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Lost Wonderland

The Brief and Brilliant Life of Boston's Million Dollar Amusement Park

First edition

Stephen R. Wilk (author)

ISBN: 9781625345578

Publication Date: Apr 2021

Format: Hardback

Also available as: Paperback  

If you take Boston's Blue Line to its northern end, you'll reach the Wonderland stop. Few realize that a twenty-three-acre amusement park once sat nearby - the largest in New England. As told here, the story of the park's creation and wild, but brief, success is full of larger-than-life characters who hoped to thrill attendees and rake in profits.
£70.95

Temporarily out of stock: usually despatched in 10-14 days

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If you take Boston's Blue Line to its northern end, you'll reach the Wonderland stop. Few realize that a twenty-three-acre amusement park once sat nearby -- the largest in New England, and grander than any of the Coney Island parks that inspired it. Opened in Revere on Memorial Day in 1906 to great fanfare, Wonderland offered hundreds of thousands of visitors recreation by the sea, just a short distance from downtown Boston.

The story of the park's creation and wild, but brief, success is full of larger-than-life characters who hoped to thrill attendees and rake in profits. Stephen R. Wilk describes the planning and history of the park, which featured early roller coasters, a scenic railway, a central lagoon in which a Shoot-the-Chutes boat plunged, an aerial swing, a funhouse, and more. Performances ran throughout the day, including a daring Fires and Flames show; a Wild West show; a children's theater; and numerous circus acts. While nothing remains of what was once called "Boston's Regal Home of Pleasure" and the park would close in 1910, this book resurrects Wonderland by transporting readers through its magical gates.

Reviews

This fascinating account of Revere's Wonderland Amusement Park in the early years of the twentieth century celebrates the industrial achievements of the era–mechanization and the electricity–that brought entertainment to the bourgeoning American middle class."–Maria Olia, author of Discovering Vintage Boston: A Guide to the City's Timeless Shops, Bars, Restaurants & More
Illustrations 12 black & white illustrations, 1 map
Pages 224
Dimensions 229 x 152
Date Published 30 Apr 2021
Publisher University of Massachusetts Press
Subject/s Architecture   Regional & national history   Lifestyle, Sport & Leisure   History of the Americas   Urban & municipal planning  
Stephen R. Wilk is a contributing editor to the Optical Society of America and author of How the Ray Gun Got Its Zap: Odd Excursions into Optics. He lives in Saugus, Massachusetts.

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