You’ll notice some strange phone numbers on this page. Before the area codes and exchanges of today, Burlington’s predominant phone prefix was “BU” in the 1950s and “BR,” or “Browning,” in the 1960s. When the phone companies dropped the letters and went strictly numeric, some users decried the loss of personality. An all-numeric phone number seemed cold, impersonal.
You’ll also notice some advertisements without street numbers. They were superfluous information. The town was so sparse that everyone knew where every store was located. Houses didn’t receive numbers in earnest until the late 1950s, when the population grew to the point where ambulances needed specifics. In 1957, the town started a new residential numbering process for freshly-built neighborhoods with plot plans. The first fully-numbered streets were Florence Road, Crawford Road, Sylvester Road, Frances Road, Foster Road, Bradford Road, Luther Road, Alma Road and Sunset Drive.
Burlington Diner, located where the Prime Energy station is now, on Cambridge St. The black and white photo is 1956. Color one looks to be earlier. Parker “Sully” Sullivan ran the place, followed by the Duncan sisters.
Wildwood Elementary School. This is now Wildwood Park.
St. Margaret Parish, construction and grand opening, late 1950s.
Early Dale Pharmacy ad
Mercury Cleaners, roughly where Papa Gino’s is now, at the corner of Cambridge St. and Terry Ave.