A Trip Down Sager Memory Lane Through Boston Architecture

In 1887 Sager Electronics, then known as Poole & Co., began as a small shop at 32 Faneuil Hall, located in downtown Boston, Massachusetts.  For anyone who has never been to Boston, Faneuil Hall is considered a must visit. Listed on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places and considered a U.S. National Historic Landmark, Faneuil Hall was first built in 1742 by merchant Peter Faneuil as a gift to the city. The original building was designed by John Smibert, but a fire destroyed the hall in 1761. Rebuilt a year later, the hall remained largely untouched for nearly 65 years until Charles Bulfinch expanded it in 1806. Quincy Market was later built to complement the hall in 1826 and the two were a vibrant area of business for merchants. 

The company left the Faneuil Hall location sometime around 1904 and headed to 16 Columbia Street.  Records are limited on the Columbia Street location, but by 1921, Poole & Co. was renamed Sager Electrical Supply and established a new headquarters at 201 Congress Street.  Sager remained on Congress Street until 1967 when the location was sold to make way for the First National Bank.

Today known as 100 Federal Street, the First National Bank Building is a skyscraper located within the Financial District in Boston.  Often referred to as the “pregnant building,” 100 Federal Street is famous for its unique architecture of protruding floors near its base.  According to Wikipedia, the architect, Campbell, Aldrich & Nulty, “designed the building with the bulge in order to give pedestrians a wider view of the street"¹ while accommodating the square footage First National Bank required.  Folklore at Sager has some believing the design was a means of accommodating Sager’s still existing Congress St. office, which was then located at the foot of the building. 

By 1967 Sager relocated its corporate offices to the corner of High and Batterymarch streets.  Still fondly referred to as 184 High today at Sager, the building is known as Chadwick Lead Works and was designed by Architect William G. Preston.  Chadwick Lead Works was built in 1887 – the same year Sager was established –  and designed in the Richardsonian Romanesque style. While only seven stories tall, the brick and stone building is “rich with detailing” and is considered “one of the most distinctive buildings” in Boston’s Financial District.²

Sager’s decade in Chadwick Lead Works came to an end in 1977. The company’s growth and the changing needs of the customer prompted President Ray Norton to relocate its headquarters outside of the city to a more expansive facility in Hingham, Massachusetts.


Quoted Sources:
1 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/100_Federal_Street

2 http://www.waymarking.com/waymarks/WMDM7A_184_High_Street_Chadwick_Lead_Works_Building_Boston_MA

Sources:
“Celebrating 120 Years of Distributing Confidence: A Look Back from the Beginning”, Barbara Jorgensen, 2007

http://www.faneuilhallmarketplace.com/info/history

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Faneuil_Hall

http://www.iboston.org/mcp.php?pid=chadwickLeadWorks

Photography:
Charles Bryan, etching 1840. Boston Public Library. - See more at: https://www.bostonteapartyship.com/faneuil-hall#sthash.vY6orC5o.dpuf

https://app.vts.com/spaces/100-federal-street-100-federal-street-33rd-floor-unit-3300-9a0ad7093b#space_photo_3719

https://www.flickr.com/photos/bostonlandmarkscommission/6311734205

Sager Electronics Historical Photos