1 Bradford Street

Chelsea Earnest Memorial Playground

The Nautilus Club, an influential women’s civic group, was deeply involved in efforts at the mid-20th century to establish proper playgrounds for children, who were otherwise left to play in the streets or on beaches that were much less tidy than they are today. The Nickerson Street Playground or West End Playground, as this was originally called, came about in 1949 when the owner of an idle property at 1 Bradford Street agreed to sell it for that purpose. The Nautilus Club put up the down payment and also sponsored events, like dessert whist-bridge parties, to raise money to equip the play area. More pictures and history»

2 Bradford Street

2 Bradford Street, former Mary's Snack Bar, now demolished, by David W. Dunlap (2010).

2 Bradford Street, former Mary’s Snack Bar, now demolished, by David W. Dunlap (2010).

From the 1940s through the 1960s, this shack was Mary’s Snack Bar — better known as Mary Spaghetti’s — run by Mary Souza. Open until 3 a.m., it was a popular rendezvous with “night prowlers,” as The Advocate put it, and anathema to the neighbors. Among the night prowlers once — it is said — were Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton. Mary’s claims to fame were clamburgers and pepper steak, but the name of the joint suggested another specialty of the house — besides general uproar. Kim Oliver of Provincetown Florist, who owns the property, replaced the tumbledown shack with a Cape-style cottage in 2011.

† 2 Bradford Street

Mary’s Snack Bar (Mary Spaghetti’s)

From the 40s through the 60s, this side shack (c1880) was Mary’s Snack Bar, run by Mary Souza. Open until 3 a.m., it was a popular rendezvous with “night prowlers,” as The Advocate put it. Reportedly among those prowlers once were Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton. What made it popular among the nocturnal set, of course, made it anathema to the neighbors, including Clarence Kacergis, who had Souza hauled up for censure by the Selectmen in 1959, saying he could not sleep. Mary’s claims to fame were clamburgers and pepper steak, but the joint was also known as Mary Spaghetti’s, suggesting another specialty of the house — besides general uproar. ¶ Updated 2012-11-13

3 Bradford Street


Provincetown Welding Works

The amazingly animate yard of the Kacergis family’s Provincetown Welding Works looks like a Tim Burton movie come to three-dimensional life. The works were established in 1946 by Clarence Kacergis (born 1916). “At first, he imagined a simple welding shop until several Provincetown artists and sculptors looked to stretch themselves and embrace metal as a heightened form of expression,” Gerry Desautels wrote. (“Forging a Dynasty in Steel,” The Banner, Oct. 16, 2003.) Among them was Chaim Gross. In the present day, Desautels continued: “Maritime objects, fauna, flora and Cape characters — strumming musicians, rowing sailors and sawing woodsmen — are depicted in quirky Kacergis style throughout the chock-a-block shop.” Picture essay and more history »

3 Bradford Street

3 Bradford Street, Provincetown Welding Works, by David W. Dunlap (2011).

3 Bradford Street, Provincetown Welding Works, by David W. Dunlap (2011).

3 Bradford Street, Provincetown Welding Works, by David W. Dunlap (2011).

3 Bradford Street, Provincetown Welding Works, by David W. Dunlap (2011).

3 Bradford Street, Provincetown Welding Works, by David W. Dunlap (2011).

3 Bradford Street, Provincetown Welding Works, by David W. Dunlap (2011).

Michael Kacergis, by David W. Dunlap (2011).

Michael Kacergis, by David W. Dunlap (2011).

The amazingly animate yard of the Provincetown Welding Works looks like a Tim Burton movie come to three-dimensional life. It was founded in 1946 by Clarence Kacergis. “At first, he imagined a simple welding shop until several Provincetown artists and sculptors looked to stretch themselves and embrace metal as a heightened form of expression,” Gerry Desautels wrote in The Banner. Among them was Chaim Gross. In the present day, Desautels continued: “Maritime objects, fauna, flora and Cape characters — strumming musicians, rowing sailors and sawing woodsmen — are depicted in quirky Kacergis style throughout the chock-a-block shop. … The works are wonders of modern recycling and years of collecting parts and pieces.” Clarence’s son, Michael, succeeded to the business.

4 Bradford Street

Members of the Kacergis family could keep an eye on their Provincetown Welding Works by peering from the windows of the house at 4 Bradford Street, built in 1875 in Italianate-Second Empire style. It was acquired by Clarence Kacergis (born 1916) and his wife, Matilda A. “Tillie” Kacergis (d 2005), in 1964. Mrs. Kacergis was the daughter of Anton and Mary Jackett, née Mayo. The Kacergises also operated Tillie’s Cottages. The house at 4 Bradford Street is still owned by the family through a revocable living trust. The Second Empire part of the house was rebuilt after a fire in 1920, the historic district survey says, and the wrought-iron gates and lamppost were fabricated by Clarence Kacergis.