As Bedford Square nears completion, it’s shaping up as a handsome addition to downtown. David Waldman has taken the original lines of the Bedford Building — the Tudor YMCA, built in 1923 — and extended them along Church Lane, then up across Elm Street.
But Bedford Square has nothing on the grandeur of its namesake’s estate.
E.T. Bedford — director of Standard Oil, and philanthropist of (among others) Bedford Junior High and Bedford Elementary School — lived on Beachside Avenue, next to Burying Hill Beach.
Here’s what his house looked like in 1920:
He wasn’t the only wealthy Beachside resident. This is a view of “Nirvana” — E.B. Sturges’ home (and personal dock) — in 1909:
Yet the Bedford influence was hard to avoid. That’s his windmill in the distance, toward the right side of the photo.
(Hat tip: Ken Bernhard)