190 Commercial Street

190 Commercial Street, Spiritus after hours, by David Jarrett (1981).

190 Commercial Street, Spiritus after hours, by David Jarrett (1981).

190 Commercial Street, by Josephine Del Deo (1976).

190 Commercial Street, by Josephine Del Deo (1976).

Spiritus pizzeria is interwoven with recent history, and its home has a fascinating past life. It was built in the 1830s for Reuben Collins II. Sixty years later, his children Richard and Minnie physically divided the house between them. It was not reunited again until the 1940s. John Yingling arrived in 1978 and transformed it into Spiritus, with a free-spirited décor. Under the same roof, Gus Gutterman and Arnie Charnick ran Spiritus Ice Cream. Spiritus has long been the after-hours gathering spot for bar-goers, partiers, late diners, and hundreds of other men. (The pizza is good, too.) The scene was upended in 1986 during a three-night melee between the police and gay protesters known as the “Spiritus Riot.”


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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