Restaurants come and go. Sal’s Place came in 1962 and stayed until 2014, when its remarkable run was celebrated and its passing mourned. It was in the Union Wharf Building, an upland relic of the Union Wharf, which was built around 1830, the first 1,000-foot-plus wharf. It was the setting of Furtado’s Boatyard. Manuel “Ti Manuel” Furtado was the father of 20th-century boatbuilding in town. His alumni went on to establish Flyer’s Boatyard (Francis “Flyer” Santos) and Taves Boatyard (Frank “Biska” Taves). He was born in São Miguel, in the Azores, landing in town in 1898 as a ship’s carpenter. He fished on the Grand Banks. Around 1920, he set up shop at Union Wharf, where he was known for his “painstaking skill and craftsmanship,” The Advocate said after his death in 1945.
The Skipper restaurant was here in the ’50s. Salvatore Del Deo opened Sal’s after his partnership with Ciro Cozzi at Ciro & Sal’s dissolved. He turned the business over in 1989 to Jack and Lora Papetsas. Their son, Alexander, joined them. The little cottage next to Sal’s — at times indistinguishable from it — is A Home at Last. It served as the geographic center of gravity for much of the lovely memoir My Provincetown: Memories of a Cape Cod Childhood, by Amy Whorf McGuiggan. At press time, a proposed enlargement that would almost double its size had become the latest flashpoint in the battle between development and preservation.
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.