On July 7, 2018, Powder Magazine celebrated both its bicentennial and restoration. Powder Magazine is the oldest structure along the Charles River Basin. Originally constructed in 1818 to store gunpowder, the building was abandoned in the 1860s due to neighborhood concerns about building’s explosive contents. In 1899 the Olmsted brothers, sons of famous landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted, converted into a bathhouse for Charles River swimmers and created Magazine Beach. The building served this function for 50 years until Magazine Beach was closed in 1949 due to water pollution.
Johnson Roberts Associates worked with the DCR to restore Powder Magazine into a building to once again serve the community. The ribbon cutting event featured music, salsa dancing, kite flying, children’s games, a tour by local researcher Nina Cohen, and birthday cake.