Boston, Joseph

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Joseph Boston (1824-1874) came to Monterey from New York City in 1849, employed by a sutler who sold goods to the occupying U. S. Army. The "Boston Store" is now part of the Monterey Old Town Historic District.

Several family members followed Joseph to Monterey, and in 1855 he moved to Santa Cruz to partner with Richard Kirby in a leather tannery, which occupied the same land as the Mission Santa Cruz tannery. Joseph married Eliza Bull (1832-1920), sister of Thomas Bull, in 1862. The couple established Calvary Episcopal Church, whose 1865 main building survives today. Eliza subdivided the tannery property after it shut down in ~1875.

The 1866 Santa Cruz map shows the tannery property as "Boston and Jones". By that time, Kirby had sold his interest to Boston and/or Boston's friend Edmund Jones. The same map also shows that Joseph Boston owned a property on Mission Street (presumably residential), close to the tannery land. The date of Boston's acquisition of the residential property has not yet been established, nor has that of his mother's property on Church Street, so we don't yet know which Boston arrived first in Santa Cruz.

Joseph's mother, Alice C. Boston (1798-1882), owned a residential property on Church Street. That property passed to daughter Alice Anna Boston Donzel (1827-1912) after her mother's death. The early-1850s house which, according to Leon Rowland, was built/lived in by John Pinkham, was razed in 1953 to make room for today's parking lot behind the Fire Dept. building on Walnut Ave. The Church Street side of the parcel now contains offices of the city Parks and Rec. Dept., which also got part of the parking lot (the parking lots are adjacent to, but not connected to the Civic Auditorium parking lot).

In 1862, San Francisco bookseller Anton Roman was using (renting?) the house as a summer cabin, and loaned it to writer Bret Harte for Harte's honeymoon. After Harte later became famous, the house became known locally as the "Bret Harte Honeymoon Cottage".

Eliza Clark Bull Boston was a Society of Pioneers member, and has a bio there.