ABOUT THE BUILDING Listed in the National Register of Historic Places, the Hayden Building is part of a larger genealogy in the design of buildings leading up to the first skyscrapers. H.H. Richardson`s grand simple gesture of massive stone and grouped windows in sequence gave large buildings a sense of monumentality and nobility. Richardson showed architects how to express the scale of increasingly larger buildings without overusing ornament. The Hayden Building is one the last remaining and earliest built example of this significant change in the design of large buildings. -CUBE design + research, LLC ABOUT THE HISTORICAL PHOTOGRAPHS It probably boasts the most muscle-bound architecture of any building of its tiny size in Boston. It's the Hayden Building, battered but still standing at the corner of Washington and LaGrange in the Combat Zone. The Hayden replaced a drugstore that exploded on this site in 1875, killing five and leaving the debris we see in the old photo. The greatest of Boston architects, Henry Hobson Richardson (his Trinity Church, in Copley Square, was under construction at the time) designed the building as four stories of office space above a ground-floor shop. He made its burly walls of rough brownstone, and its massive arches and lintels out of equally rough granite. Richardson's client was the estate of his wife's parents, and historians think that he may have employed the Hayden as an experimental prototype for a more important commission) the famous Marshall Field Wholesale Store, in Chicago (now demolished). In recent decades, the Hayden changed along with its neighborhood, housing a peep show on the ground floor and a gay bathhouse above, until being gutted by a fire in 1985. It is now jointly owned by Chinatown businessman David Wong and Historic Boston Inc., a private preservation group. They're about to scrub a century of soot from the masonry, which, in the case of the brownstone, is a rare salmon-colored variety. T'he Hayden is an official Boston landmark and is listed in the National Register of Historic Places. -Robert Campbell and Peter Vanderwarker, "CITYSCAPES - The Hayden Building",Boston Globe, 7 August 1994

Constructed, 1875
Renovation, 1995

Old - Boston Preservation Alliance Award for Excellence in 1996