Rat Alley Reminiscence (1959)

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From Paul Noble

Now, here’s a really choice photo, from Brooks Leffler.

It’s the entrance to Fred Barzyk’s and Tom McGrath’s dreadful little hovel in "Rat Alley," 1959. It was literally in a back alley which ran from Massachusetts Avenue out behind the Zebra Lounge.

The hundreds of resident rats were the size of house cats.

Fred and Tom’s apartment was the scene of many questionable after-hours gatherings, including the party of the "infamous, exploding plaster-of-paris birthday cake."

This was also the launching place for the WGBH Halloween procession of cars which wound through the streets of Boston. Dave Nohling played Dracula, sitting erect and waving, periodically, from a coffin mounted atop the seats of Frank Vento’s red convertible.

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