Bailey Cottage, Pigeon Cove, built 1896


This cottage sits at the corner of Ocean Ave. and Haven Ave. in Pigeon Cove. The caption indicates it was built in 1896. As you can see from the photo below, it is still there, now with its front porch screened in and different landscaping.

The cottage in a recent photo.

The cottage in a recent photo.

I  believe this was the cottage of Edward L. Bailey, a prominent builder in Pigeon Cove in the early 1900s who lived on Haven Ave. Bailey’s best-known building project was the Carnegie Library in Rockport. He also built a number of homes and cottages, such as the Eaton Cottage pictured in this postcard.

An article in the December 1920 issue of National Builder magazine included a brief article about Bailey, under the headline, “Post Card Advertising.” It said:

Edward Bailey, a builder, of Pigeon Cove, Massachusetts, uses post-cards to good effect in giving publicity to his work.

The accompanying illustrations are examples of the post-cards which Mr. Bailey uses to exploit his work. They are distributed where they will do the most good.

The article includes illustrations of four of Bailey’s postcards, including the Eaton Cottage one I mentioned above and another that I have (but have not yet posted here) of the Gilmore Cottage.

Edward Bailey had a storefront on Granite St. in Pigeon Cove around this same time. You can see it in this postcard. In a comment posted there, Dick Carlson remembered going to Bailey’s shop as a young boy and watching him and his son Newt do carpentry work.

The postcard contains no information on when it was printed, except that it was printed in Germany and has a divided back. This tells us that it was printed sometime between 1907 and 1917.


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Family Photos of Long Beach in 1920 and 1936

1920 Bill, Jean and C.A. Matthews by Long Beach sign

Grandmother Matthews 1920 LB

1920 Bill, & Jean Matthews on porch at Long Beach

1936 Inn at Long Beach

Dave Matthews is a marketing, mergers and acquisitions consultant in Stowe, Vt., who has seen five generations of his family spend a portion of their summers on Long Beach, which straddles the Rockport/Gloucester line. Dave generously sent along these photos to share with readers of Vintage Rockport.


A contemporary view of the Chicataubut Inn

Dave’s grandfather Charles Matthews was one of Vermont’s first two automobile dealers, starting in 1905. In 1920, he and his wife Eleanor, along with their 10-year-old daughter Jean and 8-year-old son Bill (Dave’s father), drove from Vermont to visit Long Beach for the first time. They stayed at the Chicataubut Inn at the center of Long Beach.

The family did not return again until the late 1930s. By then, Charles had died, but Dave’s father and mother, Bill and Kay, started a run of annual visits that lasted some 30 years. “They established a close friendship with the owners, Cyril and Florence Ellis, two Watertown teachers who had a great summer hospitality business and probably were the longest tenured owners of the Chicataubut,” Dave writes. Just as Dave’s father brought him as a kid, he brought his kids, and his kids have brought Dave’s grandchildren.

The top three photos are all from that first visit in 1920. At top, in front of the Long Beach sign (probably the one you see in this image), the man with two children is Charles Matthews with his daughter Jean and son Bill. The second photo shows Charles’ wife Eleanor. In the third photo, Bill and Jean sit with other children on the porch.

The final photo is from 1936 and shows the Chicataubut Inn above the beach. Real estate listings for the building say that it was constructed in 1900. Supposedly, Chicataubut is an Indian word that means warm or happy home.

A huge thanks to Dave for sharing these fantastic photos.

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Ice-Covered Rockport Harbor, c. 1935-1955

Harbor in Winter

Here’s one I found on the Web, showing an ice-covered Rockport harbor. In the background, you can see the old bowling alley near the foot of Bearskin Neck. The photograph was taken by photographer Arthur Griffin sometime between 1935 and 1955.

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Freezer and Cold Storage Building of the Interstate Fish Corporation, 1918


In 1918, George W. Perkins — described in news reports as a “prominent fish magnate” — constructed this freezer and cold storage building on T-Wharf in Rockport. Perkins had scouted locations along both the Atlantic and Pacific coasts before settling on Rockport to build his freezing facility. He believed that freezing fresh fish would be a vital new industry for the town.

Such was not to be. The Interstate Fish Corporation building was used only until 1921. It then sat empty for two years until it was destroyed by fire on Aug. 2, 1923. Today, the only vestige of its existence is the brick building at the beginning of T-Wharf that now houses restrooms for tourists, but that once served as the compressor building that circulated ammonia refrigerant to the freezer buildings.

It was not a good year for the Interstate Fish Corporation. Less than a year before the plant burned, a swordfishing vessel owned by the company, the Malicia Enos, was lost at sea with five crew aboard.

This postcard is from the Rockport Photo Bureau. It is unused and undated. The caption’s description of the building as “just completed” dates the photo as from 1918.

For more on the building, see this previous post.

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Life Saving Station and Straitsmouth Inn, Rockport, Mass., c. 1915


Even though the Life Saving Station and the Straitsmouth Inn were nearby each other on Rockport’s Gap Head, it is rare to see them together in the same postcard. This view looks across Gap Cove from along Marmion Way, and shows Straitsmouth Point before other houses were built there.


A portion of the same scene today.

The Straitsmouth Inn was built in 1906 and stood until New Year’s Eve in 1958, when a fire burned it to the ground. For a view of the granite fireplace inside the inn, see this postcard.

The Life Saving Station was build in 1889. It was originally called Gap Head Station and then became Straitsmouth Station in 1902. It was active as a life saving station until 1964.

I am not certain when this postcard was published. It was published  by the Frank W. Swallow Post Card Co. Inc., Exeter, N.H. Swallow produced postcards from 1904 to 1927. This card bears a logo on the back that says that Swallow’s company was incorporate in 1911. That means this image could be from anytime in the range of 1912 to 1927.

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Boiling Spring, Pigeon Cove, Mass., c. 1912


I need your help with this one. The location depicted in this postcard is a mystery to me. I am hoping that some astute readers can provide me with more information. Some sources believe it was in the area of Pingree Park and the former elementary school on Story Street.

The card is titled, “Boiling Spring, Pigeon Cove, Mass.” There appears to be a sign on the tree, which suggests this was a place people visited.

In a discussion of this same postcard at the Cape Ann Online forum, someone suggested that the location might have been somewhere near the former elementary school.

I also saw a reference to the Boiling Spring on the blog Memoirs of a Rolling Stone, where the author mentioned that he had been searching for it. In an email exchange, he told me that he never located it with certainty, but he added that someone had given him their “best guess” that it was in back of Pingree Park.

The card was published by Charles H. Andrews of Pigeon Cove. I wrote about him in some detail in an earlier post. Andrews was the postmaster in the Cove during the years 1901 to 1917, and possibly longer.

This postcard is not dated. It was printed in Germany, which tells us that it was printed sometime prior to 1917, the year the U.S. entered World War I.

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Old Garden Beach, Rockport, Mass., circa 1935


This is a linen postcard showing Rockport’s Old Garden Beach. Although it is undated, I estimate it to be from around 1935 for a couple of reasons. For one, linen postcards were produced primarily from 1930 to 1945, so it was somewhere in that range. For another, it was published by E.C. McIntire of Gloucester, who I believe was in business from 1907 to 1937. That narrows its date to somewhere between 1930 and 1937.

Compare this postcard to one that has a very similar view of Old Garden Beach, but roughly 10 years later. the only readily noticeable difference is that the more recent view includes a tower in the background, most likely at the lifesaving station at Gap Cove.

I have been trying to determine, without success, when the stone wall behind the beach was built. If anyone has that information, please let me know.

UPDATE: The two houses above the wall were built in 1925 (5 Old Garden Rd.) and 1930 (3 Old Garden Rd.). It seems likely that is when the wall was built.

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