612 Commercial Street

Who else would be next door to Mayo than Atkins? This was the home of Mary Emma Atkins (±1858-1934) and Anna W. Atkins (1870-1920), the daughters of the celebrated Capt. David H. Atkins of the U.S. Life-Saving Service, who perished on 30 November 1880 attempting to rescue crew members of the foundering sloop C. E. Trumbull. He is buried in the old Gifford Cemetery below a monument with a fouled anchor in deep relief. The Misses Atkins, along with their mother, Ellen (1837-1913), were credited by The Advocate with having been responsible in large measure “for the growth and popularity” of the East End. Following the death of Captain Atkins, the newspaper said, “the three ladies most hospitably cared for a growing number of summer visitors, making life for them so attractive that many became annual visitors, and some eventually permanent residents.” Among those who fell for the lure of the East End were Robert R. Smyers and Mary C. Smyers (±1930-2011) of Garrett Park, Md., who bought the Atkins cottage in 1965. It is still owned by their family. [A corrective comment appears below.] ¶ Updated 2013-07-25

3 thoughts on “612 Commercial Street

  1. Just to correct the info, 612 was bought from the Atkins family by my grandmother, Virginia T. Wild, in 1946. It then transferred to her daughter and son-in-law, Mary and Robert Smyers; after their deaths, it was inherited by their four daughters and is now owned by one daughter and son-in-law.

  2. Mr. Dunlap, I think you should be given some award for the wonderful job you have done putting “Building Provincetown” together. It is a blessing for us born and raised in Provincetown. I grew up on Law Street for the first five years and then our family moved to 178 Bradford Street. Wonderful house to have grown up with three other siblings. I’m the last at age 79.

    I thank you.

    Sylvia T. Weston
    Lake Wylie, SC

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