Photo and Commentary by Emily Putur
Rantoul Street is one of the two central points of the downtown area in Beverly, Massachusetts. Rantoul Street is the center of many important areas of Beverly. Since 1852, Rantoul Street was a place of both public and residential buildings as well as the center for living for many immigrants. In the time of the early 19th century, Rantoul Street was a gathering ground for immigrants due to the factory and industrial work that was available at the time. During the time, the immigrants would flock to downtown Beverly and set up their own small businesses as well as organizations. Rantoul Street was a huge multi-cultural center for Beverly in the 19th century. Today, due to the fact that Beverly is no longer an immigration magnet, the significance and importance it held as a cultural beginning point and a place for different ethnicities to correspond and interact is somewhat decreased. Obviously, Rantoul’s Street still remains a stronghold in the community due to the fact that it is one of the two main connection streets to many cultural and social meeting places, the source for many housing plane, as well as the location on many important traditional building s of significance in a city, such as the post office. I believe that Rantoul Street will remain immortal to the society of Beverly due to the fact that it is a center of downtown life and activity and downtown life will always remain a center point in cultural, economic, industrial and perhaps sometimes governmental standpoints in the social structure of a society. However, businesses and restaurants will replace each other throughout time, but the essence and the cultural and ethnic "melting pot" that was and always will be Rantoul Street remains immortal and forever important to the city of Beverly.
Rantoul Street intersects with the outside world in a couple of ways. The idea that it is a main component to the downtown neighborhood makes it a highlighted area of the city of Beverly. Downtown areas are always traditional strongholds in societies and communities. Downtown areas are the central areas of economic, cultural and industrial activity for a city. They are the location of most businesses and business activity. This idea remains true to the majority of cities through out the country. Rantoul Street is a manor source of economic and cultural activity that draws people from all over (different states and cities) to visit Beverly for its historic value as well as what it offers for tourism. Also due to its industrial and economic offers and benefits immigrants were once constantly drawn to Rantoul Street causing it to be a cultural and ethnic "melting pot" for the city. Due to this historical cause, Rantoul Street still remains a cultural gathering place for many different ethnicities that were once drawn to America as immigrants, but were specifically drawn to Rantoul Street due to all the different benefits it offered.