First Boy’s Club and the Tunnels of Salem

Have you heard of Fagin and the Artful Dodger?

Tunnel under Downing Block

Tunnel under the Downing Block in Salem. In this building the Boys & Girls Club was founded. The building on top was recently removed exposing where the tunnel went beyond the iron door. In every location this club was in, the buildings gave these poor boys access to the tunnels in town. Also rooms off of this tunnel was used for the Underground Railroad.

Read Salem Secret Underground The History of the Tunnels in the City to find out more. The book everyone digs!!

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Tunnels turned into sewers on Bridge Street Salem, MA.

Sewers, Utilities, and Tunnels

Well I came across these old photos I took a few years ago when they were working on Bridge Street. No thanks to an angry little Napoleon yelling at me from the hole.  Here is part of the tunnel on Bridge Street now running electrical cables by Coffee Time.

Bridge_Street_Tunnels Tunnels turned into sewers on Bridge Street Salem, MA. Tunnels turned into sewers on Bridge Street Salem, MA. Bridge_St_Tunnel_1 Tunnels turned into sewers on Bridge Street Salem, MA. Tunnels turned into sewers on Bridge Street Salem, MA. Tunnels turned into sewers on Bridge Street Salem, MA. Tunnels turned into sewers on Bridge Street Salem, MA.

After the 50’s the tunnels started getting turned into conduits. Many were used for the sewers. Why dig a new hole? A friend of mine had pictures of the sewers on Bridge Street, but I can’t find my copies. In the pictures below is a tunnel entrance in the old Naumkeag Savings building on Essex Street. Below the rug is where the sewer lines enter the building.  Why did a new hole?

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My friend Steve Dibble was the City Engineer.  He told me on an old sewer map it showed a tunnel in front of the armory that was marked off for transporting black powder from the South River. When I went to see the map, that was the page missing from the map book. Plus I am still waiting for the Assistant Building Inspector to let me see the photos and the video of the tunnel coming out of town hall. I guess that is why some one created the Freedom of Information Act…

For more about the  tunnels read Salem Secret Underground: The History of the Tunnels in the City .

Then book a tour on the Salem Smugglers’ Tour to learn more about the tunnels in town.