7 Johnson Street

7 Johnson Street, by David W. Dunlap (2011).

7 Johnson Street, by David W. Dunlap (2011).

The White Porch Inn, which opened in 2007 under Thomas Shirk, cultivates a casually refined image. But No. 7 was once the rather more raffish Coat of Arms. Under Arpina (Eghigian) Stanton and Dr. Harry “Skip” Stanton, it was a groundbreaking establishment: one of only three guest houses in the first Carnival parade in 1977, declaring quite publicly that it served — and pointedly cultivated — a gay and lesbian clientele. (The others were the Ranch, 198 Commercial, and George’s Inn, 9 Court.) “We got a little razzing along the way, but they all followed us to the Boatslip and had a wonderful time,” Arpina told Sandra L. Faiman-Silva in The Courage to Connect. These guest houses were the nucleus of the Provincetown Business Guild.

More than 2,000 buildings and vessels are searchable on buildingprovincetown.com. The Building Provincetown book is available for purchase ($20) at Town Hall, Office of the Town Clerk, 260 Commercial Street, Provincetown 02657.

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