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First Missionaries Leave for Hawaii: October 23, 1819

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articles & blogs: history

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  • Where Is the Mayflower?
    The Mayflower made many trips back and forth across the ocean before finally slipping into oblivion. But does anyone know what became of her?
  • Cape Cod and the Pilgrims
    Although Cape Cod is perhaps more commonly thought of as a vacation spot, this part of New England is rich in the early history of the Pilgrims, that courageous group of Englishmen and women who sailed…
  • Seagoin’est Town
    That Provincetown “is the seagoin’est town of New England, past and present,” is the contention of Howard Mitcham, writing in The Provincetown Advocate half a century ago, Mr. Mitcham…
  • Great Wreck Off Nantucket 1909
    Almost a century ago this winter, the famous White Star Steamship Company’s ocean liner Republic was rammed and sent to the bottom by the Italian steamship Florida, off the Island…
  • Cape Cod Moraine
    A moraine is a ridge or heap of earth and stones collected by a glacier and deposited. Long Island farther south is a moraine.The Grand Banks and the Georges Banks to which many a Cape Cod schooner…
  • Cool but Smelly
    It was in 1873 that a Cape Cod newspaper declared during a spell of hot weather: “We pity the denizens of the city in their brick ovens, especially at night when they retire to rest nominally…
  • Trees Became Coffins
    A Pilgrim settler, hewing logs to make his rude dwelling, and gazing at the virtually untouched…
  • Sandwich and the Past
    Settled in 1637 and incorporated in 1639, Sandwich is the oldest town on the Cape and one of the most beautiful.
  • Dentium Conservator
    Cape Cod colonists suffered greatly from tooth decay. Tooth washes and powders were used as early as 1718, but the toothbrush had not yet been invented.
  • The Cape Cod Canal
    There had to be a Cape Cod Canal. The long projecting arm of the Cape adds miles to coastwise traffic, 70 miles from Boston to New York, not to speak of the peril from violent storms that rage around…
  • The British Set Fire To Falmouth
    In the War for American lndependence, Falmouth on Cape Cod was burned by a Captain Mowat under the orders of the British admiral at Boston.
  • Lure of the Marshes
    Getting started in the new land was no job for one who shied away from hard work. Chopping down enough trees to get some sort of a shelter built was just the beginning. The land had to be cleared for…
  • 1,000,000 Years Ago
    Geologists tell us that microscopic examination of the famous clays of Gay Head, Martha’s Vineyard show evidence of animals that…
  • Prairie Schooners
    When the West began to call to the venturesome men of the East there was need for vehicles to carry families and their possessions to the frontiers of the West.
  • When the Cape Cod Canal Was Begun
    The first shovelful of earth to start the making of Cape Cod Canal was dug on June 29, 1904. With that shovelful was inaugurated one of the most important coastal developments ever undertaken in the…
  • Swimming From the Vineyard to Falmouth
    Several men have attempted to swim the five-mile distance of choppy Vineyard Sound between the Vineyard and Falmouth. In the summer of 1950 on June 26th, George Fraser of Dennisport made a valiant try…
  • Down to the Sea in Ships
    No stories have ever been written that can compare with the logs and journals of New England whalemen, telling of battles, tragedies, adventures, and heroic deeds. Nor do many of us realize how much…
  • A Whaling We Go!
    When spring arrived at Cape Cod in the years that saw Cape Cod and Nantucket sailing vessels everywhere on the seas, the whalers belonging to the Cape were to venture forth on new voyages for whales.…
  • Flour And The Sea
    Marion Crowell Ryder writing in the Yarmouth Register, tells of an incident in her grandfather’s life as a Cape Cod seafarer in the days when sailors went to sea without benefit of radio, radar,…
  • A Fine Cleere Pond
    Between North Truro and Pond Village lies a little valley. Here we are informed by the historians of the Pilgrim Fathers, an armed force of the Pilgrims, under Captain Miles Standish, spent their second…
  • The Water and the Rock
    Before the Pilgrims laid their eyes and put their feet on historic Plymouth Rock, they drank their first New World water from what is now called Pilgrim Spring, in Truro.
  • That Pilgrim Spring at Truro
    According to Arthur Wilson Tarbell, writing in “Cape Cod Ahoy,” the site of the Pilgrim Spring at Truro was discovered in later years by a Bostonian named Dr. William H. Rollins.
  • Nerviest New England Skipper
    Known as the “nerviest” skipper along the entire coast of New England, Parker J. Hall once sailed alone from Nantucket to Gloucester in a 96-foot packet.
  • Curious Falmouth Facts
    The old town records (1894) of Falmouth yield the following curious facts…
  • Old Cape Cod Kitchens
    Old Cape Cod kitchens were always fresh and cool, open to all work in the summer, and used for storage and common work in the winter.
  • Falmouth’s Fame for Strawberries and Turnips
    According to Chester A. Crocker, of Marston’s Mills, who was quoted many years ago by Haydn Pearson, writing in a Boston newspaper, Falmouth’s fame not only rested partly on strawberries—a…
  • An Older Harwich
    In John Hayward’s “New England Gazetteer,” published 1839, is found this account of Harwich:
  • A Peaceful Place
    Falmouth has always been a peaceful place. Except on two occasions…
  • Swiftest Ship
    In May of 1853, the village of Centerville in the town of Barnstable, Cape Cod, was delighted and excited at the arrival of the handsome ship Staffordshire at the port of Boston.
  • Furs and Wampum
    The first settlers in Cape Cod got themselves established largely by trade with the Indians.
  • Cape Cod Land Recently Made
    If you ever think of Cape Cod as an “old” place, because so much of our American history dates from its discovery by Gosnold and the settlement of the Pilgrims at Plymouth, spreading along…
  • Shiverick’s Shipyard
    Asa Shiverick and his sons built many fine clipper ships in the famous shipyard, now marked only by a plaque…
  • Drum Cellars & Witch Doors
    A Cape Cod house was sometimes built with a “drum cellar.” This is a room encircled by a brick wall, and it has a trap door overhead with steep ladder stairs up to the first floor. This…
  • Clam Shell Horse Hair Plaster
    Imagination, ingenuity, and clever hands were needed in the early days of Cape Cod, when the houses, some of which stand sturdily today, were built to stand against the elements of winter winds and…
  • Warship Sank Ten Whalers
    Down to the bottom went, in a single day of the year 1865, ten whalers of our local ports. The Civil War between North and South had in fact ended before that day, but the Confederate warship Shenandoah…
  • Ye Olde Towne Crier
    The Town Crier makes his headquarters in the Board of Trade Building, Provincetown. He marches up and down the streets, dressed in a fancy Pilgrim costume, ringing his bell, and pausing every now and…
  • Old Sandwich, New Sandwich
    Sixty-five miles southeast of London, England, there is a little town only two miles in a straight line from the sea, or four miles if one follows the winding little river Stour. It is of no importance…
  • Blackfish Ashore
    When the legislators of Massachusetts became all tangled up during the summer of 1955 in a debate on whether blackfish are really fish or a type of whale, the Provincetown Advocate waxed eloquent…
  • Cape Codders to the Fore
    From the time the Pilgrims first in 1620 stretched their legs on the friendly soil of Cape Cod, at Provincetown, to the Revolution that began in the year 1775, men and women of Cape Cod played a vital,…
  • What the Whalers Ate
    Cooks aboard the whalers served the men strong vittles. Keeping in mind that the whaling ships were often at sea for “a couple years”, the main items on the whaleship menu were:
  • Early Colonial Farmers
    A good idea of the life of the people who settled along the shores of Buzzards Bay is to be had from the diary of Isreal Fearing. He was the largest landowner in the region.
  • Cape Cod Water Cure
    A century and a half ago, according to records brought to light by the clerk of courts, Barnstable County, it was reported “that the Cape Cod Hydropathic or Water Cure Institute is now ready for…
  • Timothy Quaint
    In 1854, the Home Journal of that period contained the recorded sentiments of one Timothy Quaint on the merits of Martha’s Vineyard as he saw it. Timothy had visited the island on a fishing…
  • How Much Was Whale Oil Worth?
    When ships were outfitted, crews engaged, and long voyages undertaken in pursuit of whales for their oil, it…
  • Early Forests and Trees
    When the Pilgrims first entered the wooded areas all along the shores of the Cape, they found there a wide variety…
  • What Came of These Prisoners?
    In the year 1778, while our country and Britain were engaged in mortal combat, the large armed and hostile British frigate Somerset had the hard luck to be blown ashore and wrecked off Provincetown.…
  • Sandwich Has Oldest House
    Sandwich is a lovely Cape town, with shaded streets and well kept homes. Be certain and observe the view of the church spires as you pass along Route 6A and better yet take the bypass into the center…
  • Riding In The Old Surrey
    In the good old days of yesteryear on the Cape, people sometimes went driving or riding to meetin’ or elsewhere in a fringed-top surrey. The surrey was a light pleasure carriage, the two forward…
  • Old Wreck Hauled Ashore
    On November 28, 1951, the dragger C. R. and M. fouled its nets in the wreckage of an old wreck…
  • A Cow for the Poor
    In 1644 Andrew Hallett of Yarmouth offered a cow or a heifer in calve for the benefit of the poor of Yarmouth. The gift had to be first approved by the Court.
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