Did She Fall or Was She Pushed?

Did She Fall or Was She Pushed?

The Mayflower had to cross the Atlantic at the height of storm season, making the passage both unpleasant and dangerous passage. Many of the passengers were so seasick they couldn’t move, and waves were so rough that one passenger was swept overboard. Through what...
Provincetown History Snippet: North Truro Air Force Base

Provincetown History Snippet: North Truro Air Force Base

The North Truro Air Force Station was one of the first of twenty-four stations of the Air Defense Command radar network created to spy on the Soviet Union immediately after it tested its first atomic bomb. From 1951 to 1985, the mission of North Truro AFS was to...
Provincetown History Snippets: Provincetown’s Origins

Provincetown History Snippets: Provincetown’s Origins

Along with the rest of Cape Cod, the area that would become Provincetown was formed sometime between 17,000 BCE and 15,000 BCE. Glaciers had covered North America throughout the various Ice Ages; the last glaciation—called the Wisconsin Glaciation—left behind rock...
Provincetown History Snippets: The Gropius House

Provincetown History Snippets: The Gropius House

At 2 Commercial Street you can look up and possibly spot part of the Gropius House, also known as the Murchison House. Commissioned by Dr. Paul Murchison and created largely by Walter Gropius, it was based on a Japanese temple design with minimalist lines and large...
Provincetown History Snippets: The “Great Dying”

Provincetown History Snippets: The “Great Dying”

Between 1616 and 1619, a plague struck native villages of coastal New England from Maine to Cape Cod. It killed tens of thousands of people, among them hundreds of men, women, and children from the Wampanoag Nation. The exact nature of the “Great Dying,” and how it...
Provincetown History Snippets: The Mayflower Compact

Provincetown History Snippets: The Mayflower Compact

The Mayflower Compact was a set of rules for self-governance established by English settlers on the Mayflower on November 11, 1620. London stockholders had financed the Pilgrims’ voyage with the understanding they’d be repaid in profits from the new settlement. But...
Provincetown History Snippets: Moby-Dick and Other Whales

Provincetown History Snippets: Moby-Dick and Other Whales

While the home port of the Pequod was Nantucket, as we celebrate the annual reading and celebration of Moby-Dick here in Provincetown this weekend, we can remember the novel—and the whaling tradition that Ptown shares. Written in 1851, Moby-Dick recounts the...
Provincetown History Snippets: The Portland Gale

Provincetown History Snippets: The Portland Gale

On Saturday, November 26, 1898, New England was struck by a gale that killed over 200 persons and wrecked or sank at least 140 major vessels. The best-known victim of the gale was the coastal steamer Portland that gave the storm its name, lost off Cape Cod with 191...
Provincetown History Snippets: Revolutionary Provincetown

Provincetown History Snippets: Revolutionary Provincetown

Several Provincetown men served during the Revolutionary War, and you can see their graves in the Winthrop Street cemetery. Most Cape-based Revolutionary soldiers didn’t go far—they were involved in seacoast defense on the Cape. Six granite stones with brass plaques...
Provincetown History Snippets: The Provincetown Inn

Provincetown History Snippets: The Provincetown Inn

The Provincetown Inn opened its doors in 1925, with twenty-eight guest rooms and a formal dining room. In 1942 it began to be used by the Coast Guard as a training station, but resumed regular operations after the war. By the 1950s the inn had added a new section of...
Provincetown History Snippets: The Dune Shacks

Provincetown History Snippets: The Dune Shacks

Comprising nearly two thousand acres of shoreline in Provincetown and Truro, the Peaked Hill Bars Historic District is home to a number of dune shacks, some of them repurposed from the old lifesaving station, others that were cobbled together with the help of...
Provincetown History Snippets: Edwin Rosskam Photography

Provincetown History Snippets: Edwin Rosskam Photography

Edwin Rosskam took this photo of Provincetown in August of 1940, as part of his series chronicling American life during the Great Depression for the Farm Security Administration. The caption on this photo reads, “Tourists fresh off the boat from Boston. With...
Provincetown History Snippets: Lifesaving Stations

Provincetown History Snippets: Lifesaving Stations

The Outer Cape was long known as the grave of the Atlantic due to the number of shipwrecks along the treacherous coast. The winter of 1870-71 was especially disastrous and in response the United States Lifesaving Service was set up, replacing the Massachusetts Humane...
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