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house built as part of the Blake Park development (not counting
a handful of older, pre-existing structures), 112 Gardner Road was
one of three Blake Park houses built by the Inter-City Trust before
its collapse in scandal. Like the other Inter-City houses (80 and
150 Gardner Road), it was designed was by Clarence Thayer McFarland.
was shown in a Blake Park ad that appeared in the Brookline Chronicle
in November 1921. (See below.)
It was the
home of Albert W. Finlay (misspelled as Finley in the ad), president
of the George H. Ellis Company, a large printing firm in Boston.
Finlay was a leader for several years of a national organization
of printing companies and was active, in that role, in opposing
unionization and the introduction of the eight-hour day in the industry.
He was also a noted yachtsman, winning races into his 80s. (The
Finlay Cup, awarded annually to Boston-area sailors for a number
of years, was named for him.)
at 112 Gardner with one of his daughters, Minnie. They were listed
in the Street List from 1922 to 1928 and again from 1936 to 1940.
(Finlay had been involved in a nasty divorce case in 1913 in which
he accused his wife, an actress, of infidelity with a Boston actor.
Another daughter, also an actress, testified for her father in the
to 1935, according to the Street List, 112 Gardner was the home
of Patrick F. and Mary C. McDonald who apparently rented the house
from Finlay. Patrick was president of a steel company. Later, after
leaving Gardner Road, he served for several years on the board of
directors of the Boston Public Library and was, at one time, President
of the Boston Public Library Corporation.
Census listed the residents as: Mary C. McDonald (Patrick's mother),
77; Patrick F. McDonald, 39; Mary G. McDonald, 42; Ann M. McDonald,
1; and two servants, Mae J. Fitzgerald, 20, and Ann McNeely, 19,
both born in the Irish Free State. The family paid rent on the house
of $250 per month.
Street List had Joseph and Mary Keller and their family, formerly
on Lawton Street, living in the house. Joseph, who was born in Russia,
was a merchant, although it is not clear of what kind. The Kellers,
who were listed until 1944, were followed by Abraham and Helen Lampke,
formerly of Lawlor Street. They were listed here until 1972. Abraham
was a buyer. He died in Brookline in 2003. No other details are