Treasured Memories Revealed: The Howard Building, Then and Now

December 6, 2013


As she walked into the old, but new again building on First Street between Fenn and Federal, Holly Stover-Howard had much to say about what she remembered about the old Howard building and marveled at the new and restored one. She told the stories of her childhood – running down the hallways and up the old staircases, counting inventory of nails and screws from the first floor to the third, she brought us back to another time and place.

The Howard

The Howard

The Howard Building was originally constructed in 1916 and supported a hardware and agricultural implement business, which catered to the surrounding farms and great estates of the rural Berkshires. The Howard family business sold tools, dairy & poultry supplies, as well as other important farming implements. However, they were best known as a seed company, annually producing a seed catalogue, which was published through 1960, and issuing 10,000 copies that year alone. These Catalogues can now be found at the Athenaeum. The building played an important role in the community, but as time changed, as it always does, so did the need for seeds and it eventually closed. It is interesting how things can change and then change back again. Holly talked about each room, each floor, and you could actually see what she was seeing —  through the eyes of an enchanting woman reliving her childhood right before us. What was once old is new again and with the same charm and nostalgia it once had, but in what is now going to be a new space, a new building for the residents of Pittsfield to call home.

The Howard

And speaking of Pittsfield Residents; Artist and Senior Clerk for the City Engineers, Sheila McKenna was also along for a tour of the New Howard. She is looking forward to the completion of the development and the positive impact it will have on the community. There are a few two-bedroom options she had her eye on and will be looking for the brochure to come out soon. Sheila loves our great City and could tell you its historical nuances all the way back to the first mention of baseball. She knows a good thing when she sees it, and this new/old building seemed to resonate to the core of her beliefs and efforts in our collective goals to continue the nurtured growth of this great community. She taught us how to keep our history... present in our future. The Howard - then and now, treasured memories and future possibilities. 







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