Peter's Sweet Shop

Peter’s Sweet Shop is a soda fountain and lunch counter located on Merrimack Street in Duston Heights, Massachusetts. The eatery contains “an old-fashioned soda fountain with a marble counter and high stools and deep wooden booths with curly sides” and, for décor, includes “colored glass lamps, and a jukebox, plus a display case up in front with boxes of candy in it.” The kids of Duston Heights came to Peter’s all the time after school and on weekends to partake in various gooey treats and confections [The Spell of the Sorcerer's Skull; 45, 86].

Johnny Dixon and Fergie Ferguson often meet here after school [The Mummy, the Will, and the Crypt; 89] and slurp sodas and other gooey treats, including cherry coke [Spell; 45]; fudge ripple ice cream [Spell; 46]; chocolate frappe [Spell; 46]; hot fudge sundaes [The Eyes of the Killer Robot; 30]; and malteds [The Chessmen of Doom; 99].

Inspiration

Bellairs seemingly evoked the best of both worlds for this location: memories of the soda fountain at Hemmingsen's Drug Store in his hometown of Marshall as well as the Haverhill chocolate store, Peter’s Sweet Shop.

Interestingly enough, Haverhill once had a number of sweet shops downtown that were memorialized by former resident and cartoonist Bob Montana (1920-75). Montana attended Haverhill High School from 1936-36 and its students and faculty later inspired the leading characters in the Archie cartoons and comic books. Pop Tate’s Choc'lit Shoppe in Riverdale was based on a number of Haverhill locations - Crown Confectionery and the Chocolate Shop on Merrimack Street and the Tuscarora on Winter Street – and Pope Tate himself was inspired by the Greek immigrant owners of these soda shops. Furthering the connection is the replica of Auguste Rodin's statue, The Thinker, that sits in front of both Haverhill and Riverdale's high schools. One should note the high school in the comics is based on Haverhill old high school which has since become Haverhill City Hall.