The sign in the antique photograph says “Delight Private Beach” and it looks like everyone is having a fun time in their bathing costumes. A boardwalk built out over the water, enables visitors to dangle their legs over the edge without actually going swimming. On one side are cabanas for changing and on the other side a gazebo for shade. Delight Cottage was located at 113 Commercial Street, on the West End of Provincetown near the bend in the road by where is currently the Coast Guard Station. Times have changed, and usually even at high tide the bay side is not as crowded as it was in approximately 1910 when this photograph was taken. Old photographs and postcards were a passion of the murder victim Sonny Carreiro in the mystery novel Remaining in Provincetown by S.N. Cook. Do the antique postcards figure into the plot in some shape or form? You’ll have to read the story to find out. Now available in bookstores and online. Autographed copies are at the Provincetown Book Shop or purchase your trade paperback or ebook at Amazon.com Like us on Facebook and join the conversation.
This lovely antique postcard shows Long Point light on the tip of Cape Cod, once the location of a fishing village. The postcard was published by H. A Dickerman and Son. . It’s a handsome color lithographic print from the late 19th century. at a time when it cost just a penny to mail a postcard and two cents if you wanted to send your card outside the United States.
Today, no one lives on Long Point, which makes it a quiet and secluded spot for clothing optional bathing and picnics. If you don’t have a boat, you an hike across the breakwater at the far west end of town, by the Provincetown Inn. The further out you are willing to hike, once you arrive at the point, the more secluded you’ll be. But watch out for the tides, or you may get stranded. If you like Provincetown adventures, don’t miss out on reading Remaining in Provincetown by S.N. Cook. Autographed copies are currently available at the Provincetown Book Shop on Commercial Street. Or you can buy a copy online. The books are available in trade paperback and as an ebook. Like us on Facebookand join the conversation. Send questions to the author via comments on this website. Thank you!
This antique postcard, circa 1900, was not as popular a card as the one tourists arriving from Boston to visit Provincetown. That’s when the excitement begins. These folks, although they are so nicely dressed with those handsome hats, long dresses, vests, and waist coats, look a little downcast. Their friends are on their way to Boston after a fun time in Provincetown. They’re leaving. Hope they get to come back soon. Times have changed, but a boat– the Fast Ferry– still travels the same route. And some of us still send postcards, although often we do so by email. The Fast Ferry is having a postcard contest, so check it out on their website. Meanwhile, if you haven’t visited the Remaining in Provincetown facebook page, we are also having a contest. We want you to like our page, if you haven’t already, and tell us your favorite month to visit Provincetown and why. We’ll be sending the winner a signed copy of Remaining in Provincetown by S.N. Cook specially inscribed to the winner. So play the game and enjoy the town.
A rare antique postcard shows two of Provincetown’s early 20th century Town Criers together in one photograph: George W. Ready and Walter T. Smith. George Washington Ready wore regular street clothes while practicing his profession, clothes that gradually became more old and dilapidated as he advanced in age. He was known to have a remarkable vocabulary, but in his official capacity as Town Crier, restricted his language to what he was contracted to recite.
Walter T. Smith, known as “Hoppy” Smith served as the Provincetown Town Crier for 27 years and at age 78 resigned his post due to lameness in 1927. (Perhaps he walked with a hopping gait and thereby the nickname?) The July 16, 1927 Farmers Advocate newspaper published in their weekly issue that “he is believed to be the last Town Crier in the country” But of course her was not the last Town Crier, because Amos Kubik went on to succeed him, as documented in a 1938 Provincetown Advocate article about Kubik making a trip from Provincetown, Massachusetts to Washington D.C. to perform at the National Folk Festival on the Mall.
In the 1980s Gene Poyant went on to revive the Town Crier Tradition on Cape Cod and now the calling of being a Town Crier has been revived in many cities globally. There is a World Invitational Town Crier Championship from August lst to August 5, 2013 in Kingston Ontario.
And while Provincetown doesn’t currently have a Town Crier it might have been an inspiration for the name of a local magazine because freedom of the press and breaking up the monopoly of one small town newspaper is a big issue with the characters in the new Provincetown book Remaining in Provincetown by S.N. Cook. Antique postcards are also important in the story. Native son Sonny Carreiro is an obsessive collector. Haven’t read the book yet? Signed copies are for sale at the Provincetown Bookshop and copies are also available online in trade paperback and on kindle. Find out what people are talking about on our Facebook page.
Whether you are visiting Provincetown for the very first time or returning to Cape Cod for your annual summer visit, there is nothing like reading a few good books to get you in the mood. Here are some favorites!
Time and the Town by Mary Heaton Vorse
Mary Heaton Vorse (1874-1966) arrived in Provincetown in 1907. The book was published in 1942 and it is the last of the sixteen books that she wrote. An activist in the American labor movement and a roving foreign correspondent, she was a woman ahead of her time. Her book is a story of the town and its people, rich with history and interesting antidotes. Her story is both a memoir and a social commentary, with lovely descriptions of the way the town once was years ago. y If you have an interest in Cape Cod, Provincetown history, and women writers, don’t miss out on reading this classic. A reprinted version published by the Rutgers University Press and listed under editor Adele Heller is available online in paperback. Earlier collectible versions are available from antiquarian book dealers.
The Outermost House: A Year on the Great Beach of Cape Cod
By Henry Beston
Published in 1928 this beloved book that puts the focus on nature, is now available in paperback , and chronicles a year spent on the Cape Cod Beach , now known as the Coast Guard Beach in Easton. Beston describes the desolate beauty of life living on the sand dunes. You are transported. Available in paperback, hardback, and a kindle version as well as an audio version, it could be the perfect book to listen to as you drive towards the tip of Cape Cod.
Remaining in Provincetown by S.N. Cook
A perfect beach read, this recently released mystery novel set in the early 1990s, takes you inside the minds of a diverse set of characters whose lives intersect when one of the town’s leading citizens, a real estate entrepreneur and native son, is murdered. “Described Provincetown to a T” says one of the Amazon customer reviews. “Finally an author has been able to successfully capture the flavor of that quirky town on the end of Cape Cod and do it well,” says another reader review. Available in trade paperback in bookstores, online, and as a kindle version.
Located on Commercial Street, in the center of Provincetown, the recently renovated Town Hall, was not the very first Town Hall built in the town located on the tip of Cape Cod. The first Town Hall was located on HIgh Pole Hill and was built in 1853, but burned down in 1877. The 22,000 square foot Victorian era
building, completed in 1886, was constructed to serve as a community gathering place. Commonly in New England, town’s held their town meetings in churches until Town Halls were constructed to insure the separation of church and state. At one time or another the Provincetown Hall served many functions that included, dance hall, basketball court, and even rolller skating rink.
The Provincetown Art Association and Museum held their early art exhibitions at the Provincetown Town Hall until they were able to acquire and renovate a building of their own. Along the way, the town amassed a significant art collection that includes two paintings by Charles Hawthorne, “The Crew of the Philomena Manta ” and “Fish Cleaners.” Hawthorne founded the Cape Cod School of Art in 1899. Ross Moffet completed two murals in 1934 , “Gathering Beach Plums” and “Spreading Nets” funded by the Public Works of Art Project that helped many struggling artists during the Great Depression.
Visit the Provincetown Town Hall when you visit the town and see many fine paintings hanging on the walls and in meeting rooms. And yes, the Town Hall does figure into the storyline of the new mystery novel Remaining in Provincetown. There is something going on between the newly hired Town Manager and the publisher and editor of the weekly newspaper. What could it be? Get your copy of the book just released last month and now available at local bookstores and online at Amazon.com in trade paperback and as an ebook. Like us on Facebook. Keep the conversation going.
The above antique postcard shows the beauty of the Provincetown shoreline, viewing it from the harbor. While fishing boats are fewer, the beauty of the Cape Cod town known for its art galleries, bars, restaurants, and shops has gone through many evolutions through the decades, but is still a compelling place. As described in the new murder mystery Remaining in Provincetown by S.N. Cook, “Whatever their disagreements, members of the Provincetown community were united in their love of the sea and sand dunes, along with the winding, narrow streets and nineteenth century architecture that dominated this small New England town.” Want to read more? The 306 page paperback is available at a number of online sites and at bookstores including Amazon.com and is also available as an ebook on kindle. Don’t forget to like us on facebook. We’ll be giving away one more FREE book this week to a facebook fan.