Louis Ferreira Square (The Turn)

There was a problem facing the county commissioners as they were laying out Commercial Street in the West End in the early 19th century. His name was Benjamin Lancy. Lancy owned a salt works behind his house and it appeared his property would have to be bisected by the new street. “Whoever saws through my salt works saws through my body,” Lancy declared, according to The Provincetown Book by Nancy W. Paine Smith. To which Joshua Paine replied, “Where’s a saw?”

The result of the deflection is an infamous sharp-left-sharp-right dogleg in the road, best known simply as the Turn but also called Lancy’s Corner, Kelly’s Corner or Brooks’s Corner. Its official name since 1938 has been Louis Ferreira Square, honoring one of the men of Provincetown who died in the Great War. Louis Ferreira (1896-1918), who lived at 17 Conant Street, was the son of Manuel Ferreira (±1867-1936), a native of São Miguel in the Azores, and of Julia (Cabral) Ferreira (d 1926). He was a seaman first class aboard the Seminole, pictured, a Coast Guard revenue cutter that patrolled off the Carolinas during World War II. Ferreira died of pneumonia at the naval hospital in Portsmouth, Va., just a few weeks shy of his 22nd birthday.

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