, Salem, MA


April 23, 2013

Letter: Luck salvaged a historic mansion from Salem's fire in 1914

To the editor:

William Shepard Gray was a prosperous merchant on Federal Street in the early 1800s. He was born in Lynn in 1773 and took his mother’s maiden name in 1797, becoming Shepard Gray.

“Billy” Gray, as Salem people knew him, made money in commercial ventures on land and at sea, owning the ship Eliza before the War of 1812, in 1810.

It is likely Samuel McIntire did design work on Gray’s 179 Federal St. mansion when it was built circa 1809, the brick house still dominating its area. But the important point remains: It survived the Salem fire in June 1914.

The Gray mansion is in faded glory now, but think how close it came to destruction, along with its two neighbors at the fire’s edge. “Billy” Gray died in Cambridge in 1824, but his mansion still stands on Federal Street in Salem, thanks to luck.

Edward W. Carberg


Text Only | Photo Reprints

AP Video
Official: Air Algerie Flight 'probably Crashed' TSA Administrator on Politics and Flight Bans Raw: National Guard Helps Battle WA Wildfires Raw: Ukraine's Donetsk Residents Flee Senators Push to End Hamas Threat in Cease-Fire A Young Victim's Premonition, Hug Before MH17 U.N. School in Gaza Hit by Israeli Strike Raw: Deadly Storm Hits Virginia Campground Officials Warn of Avoidable Death in Hot Cars Death Penalty Expert: 'This is a Turning Point' House Committee at Odds Over Obama Lawsuit Raw: MH17 Victim's Bodies Arrive in Netherlands Raw: UN School Used As Shelter Hit by Tank Shell Raw: Gunmen Attack Iraqi Prison Convoy Plane Leaves Ukraine With More Crash Victims The Rock Brings Star Power to Premiere Raw: Families Travel to Taiwan Plane Crash Site Arizona Execution Takes Almost Two Hours Crash Kills Teen Pilot Seeking World Record
Comments Tracker
Roll Call
Helium debate