. From the context and from frequent similar references to “the Athenaeum” in the following
months, this appears to have been a news shop and periodical reading room in the area
of what is now Harvard Square. Since CFA often visited it between morning classes
and between afternoon classes and prayers (and could hear the Harvard chapel bell
as he read), it could not have been the famous Boston Athenaeum, incorporated in 1807
and located at this time in the James Perkins house, 13 Pearl Street, Boston. CFA
was later to frequent that institution, both before and after it moved, in 1849, to
its present building at 10 1/2 Beacon Street; see Whitehill, Boston: A Topographical History
, p. 117–118. Nor could it have been the Cambridge Athenaeum, which was not founded
until 1849 and was eventually absorbed by the Cambridge Public Library; see Arthur
Gilman, ed., The Cambridge of Eighteen Hundred and Ninety-Six,
Cambridge, 1896, p. 228. CFA’s “Athenaeum” is probably the same as “the reading room”
he so often mentions passing a little time in to see the latest news and magazines.
It was clearly not the same as “the Bookstore,” evidently William Hilliard’s (see
entry for 14 Sept.
, and note
, below), also in Cambridge but at a little distance from the Yard and the Athenaeum.