Saturday, October 29, 2016

Burnside Fountain

I had a meeting at the Worcester (pronounced Wi-stah in your best Bostonian accent) Public Library in the heart of the downtown. As a Boston snob, I don't know the area well even though I've lived out here for the past 30 years. I'm not sure if there's parking and parallel parking sends me into a panic. I decided Id walk from the art museum to the library. It's only a mile, the weather was pleasant, and I know I can get parking at the art museum because of the magic parking pass on the rear passenger window of my car.

Worcester is not only the second largest city in Massachusetts, but also the second largest city in all of New England (The six state area of: Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut, just in case you're not from these parts or have forgotten)

You would have thought for a city this large, the downtown area would be crowded and bustling with people. It's the middle of a Tuesday afternoon and I'm practically the only pedestrian. There are large buildings, and I assume businesses, but few people going in and out. There aren't even a lot of people going in and out of a Dunkin' Donuts. I wondered if it's siesta time in the city.

As I approached the library in Salem Square, I remembered there's supposed to be a famous, iconic statue somewhere behind city hall and the park. I spied it, and decided to take a closer look after my meeting.

I crossed the street from the library and came face to face with Turtle Boy. Officially, the statue known at the Burnside Fountain. The fountain was dedicated to a prominent, local attorney, Samuel Burnside in the early 1900's, by his daughter. The fountain base has two large basins originally used to water horses and a smaller basin for dogs.

The bronze figure of the boy with the turtle was sculpted by Charles Harvey. Poor Mr. Harvey had some mental health issues, and he took his own life before the statue was completed. The statue was completed by Sherry Frye. You can read a history of the statue at A Rolling Crone: The Saga of Turtle Boy

I can hear you snickering. At the turn of the last century, the genteel people of the city didn't bat an eyelash or wonder what in Gawd's name is the boy doing with the turtle. They would have accepted the classical mythic faun. But time has moved on. The fountain no longer works and with the smirk on the youngster's face, he looks like he's having way too much fun with that turtle.


  1. No words.......just, no words. lol ;)

  2. Lol, bad girl. As for your accent we watch Ray Donovan which sounds very Boston to my untrained ears. ☺ Tiggy