Former Boston Mayor, James Michael Curley, built this facility during the height of the depression at a cost of $400,000. The Mayor wished to provide the working class who formed the backbone of the city a source of recreation and enjoyment. On June 15, 1931 he dedicated "The Monument to Health", and by 1951 an estimated 21 million people had passed through the doors of "L" St to use the unique facilities.
Salt water showers, handball courts, and twin glass solariums were said to be the first of their kind in the world. Renovations began in 1987 through a commitment by the City's Capital Planning Department of $7 million to restore this landmark. The facility was rededicated on February 4, 1989.