534 Commercial Street

534 Commercial Street (ca 1930), from the Provincetown History Preservation Project.

534 Commercial Street (ca 1930), from the Provincetown History Preservation Project.

534 Commercial Street, by David W. Dunlap (2009).

534 Commercial Street, by David W. Dunlap (2009).

Once, you almost couldn’t see the Apple Tree Cottage for the apple tree, “a wonderful piece of living sculpture,” Clive E. Driver wrote in Looking Back. This three-quarter Cape was built between 1790 and 1820. In 1963, it was purchased by Howard Kanovitz, a pioneer of Photo Realism, and his wife, Mary Rattray Kanovitz, who made costume jewelry that she sold at the Queen of Diamonds. In the ’80s, it was home to David Garrick and Carl Ramos, who “created a beautiful, secret garden,” Driver recalled. But not too secret. “The moon-gate entrance was often left open so that passers-by could see the profusion of growth and blossoms.” The garden and moon gate appear on their panel of the AIDS Memorial Quilt. Two years after Garrick died, the ancient apple tree blew down.


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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