200-200A Bradford Street | Images

200A Bradford Street (Billy May, 1927), from “A Book About the Artists”

200 Bradford Street before the Millers' additions (George H. Davis's Studio, 1937), from The American Home, January 1937

200 Bradford Street before the Millers’ additions (George H. Davis’s Studio, 1937), from The American Home, January 1937

200 Bradford Street (George H. Davis's Studio, 1937), from The American Home, January 1937

200 Bradford Street (George H. Davis’s Studio, 1937), from The American Home, January 1937

200 Bradford Street (George H. Davis's Studio, 1937), from The American Home, January 1937

200 Bradford Street (George H. Davis’s Studio, 1937), from The American Home, January 1937

200 Bradford Street (George H. Davis's Studio, 1937), from The American Home, January 1937

200 Bradford Street (George H. Davis’s Studio, 1937), from The American Home, January 1937

200 Bradford Street (George H. Davis's Studio, 1937), from The American Home, January 1937

200 Bradford Street (George H. Davis’s Studio, 1937), from The American Home, January 1937

Richard E. Miller in his studio (ND), from ArtnHistory, via Wikimedia Commons

Richard E. Miller in his studio (ND), from ArtnHistory, via Wikimedia Commons

“Girl With Guitar,” by Richard E. Miller (ND), from ArtnHistory, via Wikimedia Commons

“Reflections,” by Richard E. Miller (1915), via Wikimedia Commons

“Boat and Horses,” by Richard E. Miller (ND), Town Art Collection, from the Provincetown History Preservation Project

“The White Colt,” by Irving Marantz (ND), courtesy of the Provincetown Art Association and Museum

“The Family,” by Irving Marantz (ND), courtesy of the Provincetown Art Association and Museum

“In the Museum,” by Irving Marantz (1965), also known as “Arena” or “Horses,” courtesy of the Provincetown Art Association and Museum

200 Bradford Street (Josephine Del Deo, 1976), from the Massachusetts Historical Commission Survey, at the Provincetown Public Library

200 Bradford Street (Josephine Del Deo, 1976), from the Massachusetts Historical Commission Survey, at the Provincetown Public Library

200A Bradford Street (Josephine Del Deo, 1977), from the Massachusetts Historical Commission Survey, at the Provincetown Public Library

200A Bradford Street (Josephine Del Deo, 1977), from the Massachusetts Historical Commission Survey, at the Provincetown Public Library

200 Bradford Street (David W. Dunlap, 2008)

200 Bradford Street (David W. Dunlap, 2008)

200A Bradford Street in the background (David W. Dunlap, 2008)

200A Bradford Street in the background (David W. Dunlap, 2008)

200 Bradford Street (David W. Dunlap, 2011)

200 Bradford Street (David W. Dunlap, 2011)


Read the narrative or consult the documents

200-200A Bradford Street | Documents


Chronology

Bradford 200 1880 Atlas

1880 | Barnstable County Atlas: Property of H. & S. Cook & Company. [Collection of Ken Janson and Robert Vetrick]

1895 | 20 January, Barnstable County Registry of Deeds, Book 310, Page 124: Deed to Prince I. Freeman, from Abigail R. Cook, A. Louis Putnam, and Adelaide O. Putnam.

Bradford 200 1910 Atlas

1910 | Provincetown Atlas: Property of P. I. Freeman. [Pilgrim Monument and Provincetown Museum]

1918 | 12 September, Barnstable County Registry of Deeds, Book 365, Page 116: Deed to Harriet Miller, from Prince I. Freeman.

1927 | A Book About the Artists, by Nancy W. Paine Smith and Billy May, Page 18: “Richard E. Miller.” [PHPP 4455]

1929 | Snow Cemetery, Truro: Elsbeth Miller headstone. [Find a Grave 113879276]

1937 | January, The American Home, Page 23: “Provincetown Carriage Barn Into Home / Home of Mr. and Mrs. Richard E. Miller.” [PHPP 5969]

1943 | 28 January, The Provincetown Advocate: “Cape End Mourns Richard E. Miller / Noted Artist Laid to Rest Today — Honored Here and Abroad.”

1943 | Snow Cemetery, Truro: Richard Emil Miller headstone. [Find a Grave 113879249]

1944 | 4 December, Barnstable County Registry of Deeds, Book 621, Page 547: Deed to Lilly K. Christensen, from Harriet Adams Miller.

Bradford 200

1946 | June, Barnstable County Registry of Deeds, Plan Book 100, Page 37: Plan of property drawn for Lilly Christensen by John R. Dyer.

1951 | 16 August, Barnstable County Registry of Deeds, Book 790, Page 371: Deed to Eugene J. Corrigan and Jeannette B. Corrigan, from Lilly K. Christensen.

1956 | 19 July, The Provincetown Advocate: “Recent Rentals.” The Eugene Corrigan estate has been rented to “Mr. and Mrs. Daniel Yankelovitch, author, of New York City, for the season.”

1957 | 11 April, The Provincetown Advocate: “Rentals Reported by Ethel A. Ball.” The Eugene J. Corrigan house and studio has been rented to “Robert Motherwell of New York, leader and lecturer in abstract art.”

1958 | 17 July, Barnstable County Registry of Deeds, Book 1010, Page 116: Deed to Evelyn Marantz and Irving J. Marantz, from Eugene J. Corrigan and Jeannette B. Corrigan.

1959 | 31 December, The Provincetown Advocate: “Marantz Paints as Way of Life,” by Frank Crotty of The Worcester Sunday Telegram.

1960 | Snow Cemetery, Truro: Harriet Adams Miller headstone. [Find a Grave 113879259]

1972 | 15 June, The New York Times, Page 44: “Irving Marantz, 60, Painter, Sculptor.” [TimesMachine]

1972 | Town Cemetery, Provincetown: Irving J. Marantz monument. [Find a Grave 52875928]

1975 | Town Cemetery, Provincetown: Evelyn M. Marantz monument. [Find a Grave 52875959]

1977 | 15 December, Barnstable County Registry of Deeds, Book 2653, Page 333: Deed to Gabrielle Ponek and Stefan P. Ponek Jr., from Robert F. Ebin, as executor of the will of Evelyn Marantz.

1981 | 2 February, Barnstable County Registry of Deeds, Book 3235, Page 96: Deed to Gabrielle Rilleau (formerly Ponek), from Stefan P. Ponek Jr.

2014 | 10 July, UMass Boston Archives: “Gabrielle Rilleau at the Provincetown Mass. Memories Road Show: Video Interview.” [Vimeo 100451206]


Town records

Assessor’s photograph | Parcel 12-4-146-0
Assessor’s photograph | Parcel 12-4-146-A

Assessor’s summary | Parcel 12-4-146-0
Assessor’s summary | Parcel 12-4-146-A

Property card | Parcel 12-4-146-0
Property card | Parcel 12-4-146-A

Historic survey | 200 Bradford Street [PHPP 4151]
Historic survey | 200A Bradford Street [PHPP 3750]


Read the narrative or view the images

200-200A Bradford Street

200 Bradford Street (David W. Dunlap, 2013)

200 Bradford Street (David W. Dunlap, 2013)

Not much imagination is needed to picture 200 Bradford Street, built around 1850, as a barn or a stable. At the end of the 19th century, it was part of a complex of buildings serving H. & S. Cook & Company, a large shipping and fishing enterprise that had its own 1,000-foot-long wharf at what is now 481 Commercial Street.

An 1880 atlas shows a stable at the head of Cook Street (No. 200), a fish house immediately to the west, and a wagon house west of that. In 1895, Adelaide O. (Cook) Putnam; her husband, A. Louis Putnam; and Abigail R. Cook sold the property for $300 to Prince I. Freeman — one of the many Prince Freemans descended from Mercy (Prence) Freeman, herself descended from Gov. Thomas Prence of Plymouth Colony and William Brewster of the Mayflower — and Maj. John Freeman. According to A Book About the Artists, by Nancy W. Paine Smith, Freeman used the stable as a barn.

Richard E. Miller (Billy May, A Book About the Artists, 1927)

Richard E. Miller (Billy May, A Book About the Artists, 1927)

Its days as a landmark of the art colony began in 1918 when Harriet Adams Miller (1880-1960), the wife of the American Impressionist Richard E. Miller (1875-1943), purchased it from Freeman. Smith said the Millers had been drawn to the property by “the willows and the little hollow behind them; a fertile little hollow, a sheltered little hollow which defies the winter winds, and very early in the spring brightens the yard with pussy willows and green grass.”

Richard Miller’s studio was located in the smaller structure at No. 200A, to the east of the main house, which can still be glimpsed through the arched gateway on Bradford Street. Of this building, Smith wrote that it had been brought across the harbor by scow from Long Point. “The big pine timbers, now brown as a nut, are fastened together by wooden pins,” she wrote. She added that the walls had been heightened to accommodate the mural panels Miller painted for the Missouri State Capitol, including Assembling of the First Legislature. “For the historical subjects depicted, Provincetown young women acted as models,” she wrote, meaning there might be some familiar faces out there in Jefferson City.

We’re lucky to have a detailed description of the Miller property from the January 1937 issue of The American Home, which makes it sound idyllic. The article describes the residence as a former carriage house, which is not necessarily a contradiction of the earlier description of it as a barn. It also makes it sound as if the barn door or carriage door was originally on Bradford Street, which may explain what seems today like the odd proportioning of the south facade.

A hedge now shields it from passing traffic, picket gates open into the yard at either end of the house, and in the rear there are French windows opening onto a wee flagged terrace, a stretch of grassy turf, and a garden pool under the willow, with Mr. Miller’s atelier, where he spends many busy hours, close at hand. …

After closing up the wide doorway, which originally opened on the street, and clapboarding to match the rest of the exterior, windows were cut where necessary … an outside chimney was built against the center of the end opposite the ell … an entrance doorway arranged at its right and another directly across in the other end. The harness room ell became the kitchen, and the upper floor … was partitioned off to provide for bedrooms and bath.

… [I]t has been found desirable to add a small room at the rear in the angle between the ell and the main house to protect the rear entrance from the winds which sweep down across the dunes. The ell has also been extended to provide for a breakfast nook with a fireplace at the end, which is so delightfully inviting as to cause one to wish that every household might have a similar one to enjoy the year around.

A native of St. Louis, Miller studied at the College of Art at Washington University in St. Louis (now the Sam Fox School of Design and Visual Arts). He was awarded a scholarship to continue his studies in Paris at the Académie Julian (now ESAG Penninghen) and then spent time at the American art colony established in Giverny, around the home of — though not directly connected with — Claude Monet. The works of one Miller’s friends from Giverny, Frederick Carl Frieseke, bear a remarkable similarity to his.

In Paris, he met Harriet Adams of Rhode Island. They were married in London in 1907. Two years later, they had a daughter, Elsbeth.

Of all the artistic expatriates who settled in Provincetown as World War I consumed Europe, Miller “was the most coloristically impressionist in style, yet the most bitterly anti-modern in attitude,” Dorothy Gees Seckler wrote in Provincetown Painters, 1890s-1970s.

His success in Paris was apparently based on paintings of models posed as fashionable ladies of the boudoir, or other bourgeois surroundings that would allow for the play on sunlight on comely flesh, on ribbons and ornaments. Yet when Miller could set aside the contrived artificiality of this kind of marketable fare, he was capable of considerable depth and sensitivity. This is seen in his sympathetically affectionate portrait of young Edwin (Eddie) Reeves Euler, with the stuffed owl (which Eddie still owns) crowning the subtle composition.

Befitting an artist of his station, Miller was deeply involved both with the Provincetown Art Association and its social parallel, the Beachcombers. It was here that he provided the lightning rod — or the final straw, depending on how you look at it — for the bitter and pronounced division between the modern and conservative factions at the association, which reached a head in 1926, when the work of the two camps was hung together in the same room for the last time. Ross Moffett described the precipating incident in Art in Narrow Streets:

‘Hence the Pyramids,’ signed by a purported ‘Ad Wolgast,’ was a cubist-like canvas that hung in the corner of the gallery allotted to the moderns …. Soon it became noised about the art colony that ‘Wolgast’ was none other than Richard Miller. Not all members of the Association regarded this hoax with amusement. Some blamed Miller, some the Art Association in general, and some the two members of the jury who had been counted on to defend the interests of the moderns, but who had been fooled by a fake modern picture.

John Whorf was also in on the hoax and claimed credit for having come up with the name of Ad Wolgast; the “Michigan Wildcat” was a washed-up prize fighter. “I’ll bet none of the art colony around here ever heard of him,” Whorf said. “Ad Wolgast it is!” answered Miller exultantly. Beginning in 1927, summer exhibitions of the modern and conservative schools were hung separately.

In 1929, Elsbeth Miller died in her 20th year. Miller himself died in January 1943 while in St. Augustine, Fla. All three family members are buried in the Snow Cemetery in Truro. Miller’s pallbearers included Whorf and the writer John Dos Passos, and such prominent town artists as William Boogar, Oscar Gieberich, Philip Malicoat, and Bruce McKain; and leading civic figures like Ralph S. Carpenter, Dr. Frederick Hammett, and Carl Murchison. The next year, Mrs. Miller sold the property to Lilly K. Christensen of Brooklyn. At this time, the house and studio still occupied the same tax lot.

Christensen sold that and an adjacent parcel to the east (now No. 202) to Eugene J. and Jeannette B. Corrigan, of Narberth, Pa., northwest of Philadelphia. The summer tenants in 1956 were the author Daniel Yankelovich and his wife — presumably the same Daniel Yankelovich (b 1924) who would soon establish the marketing and research firm Yankelovich, Skelly & White. The summer tenant in 1957 was the artist Robert Motherwell (1915-1991).

Conrad Malicoat sculpture on the monument in Town Cemetery to Irving J. Marantz and Evelyn M. Marantz (David W. Dunlap, 2010)

Conrad Malicoat sculpture on the monument in Town Cemetery to Irving J. Marantz and Evelyn M. Marantz (David W. Dunlap, 2010)

The abstract artist Irving J. Marantz (1912-1972) and his wife, Evelyn M. (Hurwitz) Marantz (1911-1975), a teacher, bought the property from the Corrigans in 1958, renewing 200 Bradford’s role as an important art landmark in town. Marantz was graduated in 1933 from the Newark School of Fine and Industrial Art (it no longer exists); studied with George Grosz and Harry Sternberg at the Art Students League of New York, a crucible of Provincetown artists; and then studied in Hong Kong and Shanghai, until 1940. “I learned a great deal about Chinese art and became something of an authority on it,” he told Frank Crotty of The Worcester Sunday Telegram in 1959. The couple were married in 1938 and had two children: Mady and Michael.

Beginning in 1950, Marantz conducted the Provincetown School of Painting, though it was apparently not here, to judge from a 1959 advertisement in The Advocate showing it on Atkins Lane. (It had previously been at 516 Commercial Street.) “Art students, whether beginners or advanced, are presented with an understanding of technique and esthetics,” the ad said. “Emphasis is placed on experimentation, and assistance is given in the search for direction.” To Crotty, Marantz said:

One paints because one has greater empathy with shapes, colors and textures than with sounds, words or movement. … [A]ll the aspects and parts of his painting create a sense of oneness. The viewer obtains a feeling of exaltation, gratification, and a sense of participation with this oneness. It is as one enjoys the experience of seeing a bird in flight, or the movement of a fish in water, or existence itself.

Irving Marantz died in 1972. Evelyn survived him by three years. They are both buried in Town Cemetery under a monument that includes a sensuous stone sculpture that Mady Marantz, a psychologist practicing in New York City, told me in 2015 was the work of Conrad Malicoat (1936-2014). The property was sold in 1978 for $77,500 to the writer and poet Gabrielle “Gaby” Rilleau Ponek, of the Rilleau sandal-making family, and her husband, Stefan P. Ponek Jr., a radio announcer and producer. After they were divorced, she became the sole owner in 1981 and remains so today, both of the main house and studio parcels.

200A Bradford Street (David W. Dunlap, 2011)

200A Bradford Street (David W. Dunlap, 2011)

 


View the images or consult the documents

204 Bradford Street

The little outbuilding on the front lawn is the main event here: a neo-Classical folly that was a garage until 1977 when the ornamentation was added and it was converted to a cottage. The property — cottage and main house — was owned until 1944 by the artist Nancy Ferguson (1869-1967). It was purchased by Fredric “Fritz” Varady (1908-2002), an artist and magazine illustrator, who brought a smart-set 1950s style to Norman Rockwell-like vignettes. It’s been owned by the O’Hara family since 1968. [Updated 2012-02-03]

208 Bradford Street


Berta Walker Gallery

Within this unremarkable roadside building (1972) is one of the most respected and pedigreed showcases in town: the Berta Walker Gallery. Berta Walker was the founding director of the Graham Modern Gallery in New York. Her father, Hudson D. Walker, was an influential art patron and one of the forces behind the Fine Arts Work Center. Her great-grandfather Thomas B. Walker was the original benefactor of the Walker Art Gallery in Minneapolis. Her gallery, which opened in 1989, specializes in Provincetown artists. Walker currently represents Donald Beal; Varujan Boghosian; Romolo Del Deo and his father, Salvatore Del Deo; Elspeth Halvorsen; Robert Henry and his wife, Selena Trieff; Brenda Horowitz; Penelope Jencks; John “Jack” Kearney; Anne MacAdam; Erna Partoll; Sky Power; Blair Resika and her husband, Paul Resika; and Peter Watts; as well as the estates of Hans Hofmann, Herman Maril, Nancy Whorf and others.

208 Bradford Street

208 Bradford Street, Berta Walker Gallery, by David W. Dunlap (2014).

208 Bradford Street, Berta Walker Gallery, by David W. Dunlap (2014).

208 Bradford Street, Berta Walker Gallery, by Stephen Borkowski (2015).

208 Bradford Street, Berta Walker Gallery, by Stephen Borkowski (2015).

Berta Walker, by David W. Dunlap (2014).

Berta Walker, by David W. Dunlap (2014).

At the Sorcerer’s Apprentice, built by Freeman Forbes “Bob” Dodge and run by him from the 1950s to the ‘70s, one could find unusual pottery, driftwood lamps, and Blenko glass. As the Berta Walker Gallery, it is among the leading artistic showcases in town. Walker was the founding director of the Graham Modern Gallery in New York; daughter of Hudson and Ione (Gaul) Walker, early leaders of the Fine Arts Work Center; granddaughter of the writer Harriet Avery and the musician Harvey Gaul; and great-granddaughter of Thomas Walker, benefactor of the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis. Her gallery, specializing in important local artists, opened in 1990 at 222 Commercial before moving here. The artist Sky Power is the director. This is a live-in shop, part of a condominium complex developed in the 1980s by Kent Coutinho.


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.

211 Bradford Street


To say simply that this was once Cesco’s Italian Restaurant, while true, misses the larger point that Cesco — the “Spaghetti King of Cape Cod” — was a phenomenon in his day; witness the fact that the intersecting road is called Cesco Lane.


You’ll see the name spelled Chesco, too, as it would be pronounced in Italian. Mary Heaton Vorse’s brother, Fred H. Marvin, a student of Charles W. Hawthorne, met Francesco “Cesco” Ronga in Naples around 1910 and took him on as a kind of ward, cook, man Friday and companion. Ronga was said to have “the gay, volatile and changeable temperament of a true Neapolitan.” It was at Cesco’s in 1916 that the Beachcombers was founded. The artist Harvey J. Dodd lived here in the mid-1960s, and the sculptor Richard Pepitone ran an art school here in the 1970s.

211 Bradford Street

211 Bradford Street, courtesy of the Provincetown History Preservation Project.

211 Bradford Street, courtesy of the Provincetown History Preservation Project.

To say simply that this was Cesco’s Italian Restaurant misses the point that Cesco, the “Spaghetti King of Cape Cod,” was a phenomenon, still recalled in the name Cesco Lane. (You’ll see it spelled Chesco, too.) Mary Heaton Vorse’s step-brother, Fred Marvin, a student of Charles Hawthorne, met Francesco “Cesco” Ronga in Naples and took him on as a “valet.” To our eyes, it looks like a longtime love affair cloaked in a fairly thin veil. They were devoted to one another more than 40 years until Marvin’s death in 1942, Amy Whorf McGuiggan told me. Cesco’s restaurant, where the Beachcombers was founded in 1916, passed to Patricia Hallett after Cesco’s death in 1947. The artist Harvey Dodd lived here in the ’60s, and the sculptor Richard Pepitone ran an art school here in the ’70s.


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.

211½ Bradford Street

Mildred Greensfelder Playground

The forlorn sign doesn’t begin to hint at the pioneering influence of Mildred (Wood) Greensfelder, who was the leading force in the 1940s and the 1950s for the creation, maintenance and vitalization of the town’s principal playgrounds; here, on Howland Street, and in the West End, at Nickerson Street. Such was Mrs. Greensfelder’s identification with the issue of playgrounds that Mary Hackett proposed in 1954 that the new elementary school be named in her honor, “as her constancy and perseverance has resulted in a real contribution to the health and happiness of our children.” (“Name for School,” The Advocate, Nov. 18, 1954.)

Naturally — this being Provincetown — not even the subject of playgrounds is pure mom-and-apple-pie. Mrs. Greensfelder found herself in a nasty battle with the Recreation Commission, of all bodies. The donnybrook involved included her resignation from the committee and then a legal struggle that went to court and before the voters. The issue seems to have boiled down to how much macadam should be in a playground and who had the authority to install — if Mrs. Greensfelder didn’t aprrove. And she did not approve. “It is my firm belief,” she declared in 1950, “that such a surface, even when constantly supervised, will be hazardous, and wounds received from falls on macadam can be dangerous and dirty, and bones and skulls can be broken.” (“Pioneer Worker Quits in Protest,” The Advocate, May 25, 1950.)

Even when she and her husband, the playwright Elmer L. Greensfelder, moved to Philadelphia, Mrs. Greensfelder continued to hold a strong interest in the welfare of the playgrounds. In absentia, she urged voters before the Town Meeting of 1956 to approve the money necessary for the removal of dirty sand and the “spreading of clean sand in both playgrounds.”

212 Bradford Street

East End Market

Even neighborhood grocery stores summon history in Provincetown. The East End Marketplace is a descendant of the Patrician Shop, which was opened in 1949 by Cyril T. Patrick — he of Patrick’s Newsstand — and his wife, Philomena “Phil” (Jason) Patrick, who was also his partner in the Noel Shop. It was, together with Manuel Cabral’s Bonnie Doone (now Mussel Beach) and Basil Santos’s Captain’s Galley (now Michael Shay’s), one of the first big commercial enterprises on Bradford Street.

The Patrician was a general store, but with Eva Perry as cook, its lunch counter gained a reputation as having the best Portuguese soup on Cape Cod, Peter Manso said. After an interim as TeddySea’s Market, it became the East End, under the proprietorship of Gary and Ken. One can still see some vestiges of the past like the Patrician newsrack (visible in the photo below).


212 Bradford Street

Harvey Dodd mural (1968) at 212 Bradford Street, East End Marketplace, by David W. Dunlap (2014).

Harvey Dodd mural (1968) at 212 Bradford Street, East End Marketplace, by David W. Dunlap (2014).

Even neighborhood grocery stores summon history in Provincetown. The East End Marketplace is a descendant of the Patrician Shop, which was opened in 1949 by Cyril Patrick — he of Patrick’s News Store — and his wife, Philomena “Phil” (Jason) Patrick, who was also his partner in the Noel Shop. With Manuel Cabral’s Bonnie Doone and Basil Santos’s Captain’s Galley, the Patrician was one of the first big commercial enterprises on Bradford. It was a general store, but with Eva Perry as cook, its lunch counter gained a reputation as having the best Portuguese soup on Cape Cod, Peter Manso said, as well as a mean lobster roll and a good old-fashioned banana split. After an interim as TeddySea’s Market, it became the East End. Furthering its local legacy is a bird’s-eye view of the Cape tip, painted by Harvey Dodd in 1968, a detail of which is pictured above.


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.

214 Bradford Street

Foley House

“This house is proof that we are family here in Provincetown,” Alice Foley said in 1996 at the dedication of Foley House, a congregate home for 10 people living with HIV and AIDS. Foley cofounded the Provincetown AIDS Support Group (now the AIDS Support Group of Cape Cod), whose housing director, Irene Rabinowitz, worked on this project with the Provincetown Housing Authority. The effort began as a renovation, but the contractor demolished the existing structure in 1995. It was then rebuilt.

The original house was the home until 1952 of Jonathan C. “Jot” Small, “one of the last of the truly salty Cape Cod personages,” The Advocate said. He accompanied Admiral Donald B. MacMillan on several trips to the Arctic and returned with the skill needed to build an especially fast class of sailboat known as the Eskimo.

214 Bradford Street

214 Bradford Street, Foley House, by David W. Dunlap (2013).

214 Bradford Street, Foley House, by David W. Dunlap (2013).

Alice Foley, courtesy of The Provincetown Banner.

Alice Foley, courtesy of The Provincetown Banner.

“This house is proof that we are family here in Provincetown,” said Alice Foley (pictured) in 1996 at the dedication of Foley House, an assisted-living, congregate home for 10 otherwise homeless people living with H.I.V. and AIDS — the only program of its kind on the Cape. Foley cofounded the Provincetown AIDS Support Group (now the AIDS Support Group of Cape Cod). Its housing director, Irene Rabinowitz, worked on this project with the Provincetown Housing Authority. The effort began as a renovation, but the contractor demolished the existing structure in 1995. The house then had to be reconstructed. There are 10 bedrooms, each with a refrigerator and microwave oven, and two kitchens.


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.

217 Bradford Street

Great Italianate brackets at the front door punctuate this otherwise plain building, which was constructed between 1870 and 1880. The well-loved Elizabeth I. “Lizzie” Livingston (±1879-1945) made her home at 217 Bradford Street in the early 20th century. Around 1918, she opened a candy, ice cream and soda store at 409 Commercial Street. “She has sold penny candy during her quarter of a century to Provincetown mothers and fathers when they were children, just as she served their children,” The Advocate noted at the time of her retirement in 1943, forced by ill health. “And, she said, the older folk don’t change much. They still edge over with a hankering toward the penny candy case.” (“Old Candy Shop Now in New Hands,” The Advocate, July 15, 1943.)


Her parents were Nova Scotian: Capt. Alexander Livingston of Cape Bretton and Susan Doggett Livingston of Liverpool. Before opening her candy store, Miss Livingston had worked in the stationery, magazine and news shop run by Fred Dearborn, who was married to her sister Addie, and in a jewelry and news shop run by Henry Wippich. “One of Miss Livingston’s interesting hobbies was elephants fashioned from bone, ivory and other materials,” The Advocate reported, without noting whether she made or collected them. (“Death Removes Miss Livingston,” The Advocate, Aug. 30, 1945.)

Francis W. Stark (b ±1911) was living here by the late 1940s. As an agent for the Whitehead Brothers Sand Company in the early 1950s, he was instrumental in seeing to the delivery of the clean sand from Beach Point that the company donated to the Howland Street playground (now the Muriel Greensfelder Playground) at 211½ Bradford Street. It may be that Stark is still alive and a centenarian.

222 Bradford Street

The Tasha family is so closely associated with the Tasha Hill compound on Howland Street, and the dune shack that passed to the Tashas from the poet Harry Kemp, that it’s almost surprising to find another family landmark. But here it is, in a mid-19th-century home that has — mercifully — not yet been gussied up. This was the home of John Tasha (d 1954), a fisherman and Grand Banker who had come to Provincetown at 14 from São Miguel in the Azores, and his wife, Mary (Carlos) Tasha. It was also home to Mary Tasha’s brother, Capt. Antone “Tony” Carlos (d 1955), the foreman at the Consolidated Weir Company plant, and his wife, Catherine (Days) Carlos (d 1932).


Tasha’s son, Herman J. Tasha, also lived here with his wife, Rose “Sunny” (Savage) Tasha. Advertisements for Sunny’s Nursery — “Swimming Lessons, Nature Study, All Things Children Like” — appeared in The Advocate in 1933. Even though the center of gravity in family life shifted over to Tasha Hill, this property remains in the family.

Its occupants left their mark. Two years after Captain Carlos died, Kemp wrote a poem celebrating him as a fixture of the Bradford Street scene, in a chair in his front yard.

Don’t take his chair in; let it stay outside
Where still the four horizons broaden wide:
He belonged there; and there he chose to sit
Till strong rain swept him, or extreme cold bit,
Or high winds rose to rock each anchored boat —
Then he would only fetch a heavier coat.

You say he’s GONE? I don’t accept your saying;
He, like our Monument, was built for staying,
For every time I walk up Bradford Street,
I find him sitting in his outdoor seat;
A thicker substance gathers out of air;
Again I feel the old man sitting there!

Historic District Survey, main house • Historic District Survey, workshop • Historic District Survey, shed • Assessor’s Online Database ¶ Updated 2013-02-10

 

226 Bradford Street

226 Bradford Street, King's Highway Stagecoach Stop, by David W. Dunlap (2008).

226 Bradford Street, King’s Highway Stagecoach Stop, by David W. Dunlap (2008).

226 Bradford Street, by David W. Dunlap (2008).

226 Bradford Street, by David W. Dunlap (2008).

A terrific vestige of early times, this three-quarter Cape is known as the King’s Highway Stagecoach Stop and is said in popular lore to have been built around 1775 in Truro to serve stagecoaches on their way from Eastham along the King’s Highway, when King George III was sovereign around these parts — to the extent that anyone ever was. The Provincetown Historic Survey is more guarded, putting the construction date range as 1790 to 1820. In the 1930s, the designer and sculptor Saul Yalkert and his wife, Ruth Dyer, meticulously restored the building.


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.

226 Bradford Street

King’s Highway Stagecoach Stop

A terrific vestige of early times, this three-quarter Cape is known as the King’s Highway Stagecoach Stop and is said in popular lore to have been built around 1775 in Truro to serve stage coaches on their way from Eastham along the King’s Highway, when King George III was sovereign around these parts (to the extent that anyone ever was). The historic district survey is more guarded, putting the construction date range as 1790 to 1820. In the 1930s, the designer and sculptor Saul Yalkert and his wife, Ruth Dyer, meticulously restored the building.

228 Bradford Street

A full Cape at 228 Bradford Street, built in 1850 in the Greek Revival style, was once the home of William Hoontis (d 2004) and Cliff Cowgill, partners in life and in business: the Cheese Market, where they were known to townspeople simply as Bill and Cliff. They operated the Cheese Market from 1978 to 1986 and also Clifford-William Antiques at 225 Commercial Street.

230-230A Bradford Street

Sweetly contrary to the gigantism of our own times, the three-quarter Cape is a vanishing species. So 230 Bradford Street is a joy to encounter. It was built between 1800 and 1830. Ric Ide and Matt Mirisola acquired it in 2003. They operate 230A Bradford Street (the house on the ridge, just visible over the roof gable) as a rental property called Ptown Cottage.

232 Bradford Street

Provincetown Bungalow Haven

A glimpse up the hillside might persuade you that some great Arts-and-Crafts Adirondack lodge had drifted down to the Cape, but then you realize it’s too crisp to be an antique. In fact, Richard P. “Rick” Wrigley‘s home was constructed above a complex called Provincetown Bungalow Haven, which includes four other houses that evoke both Stick and Shingle styles. One is a private dwelling. The others — Porch House, Treeviews and Bungalow — can be rented.

All were designed by Wrigley, a well-known furniture maker (represented in the Smithsonian American Art Museum) who acknowledges the tension in his work between artistry and craft. “I want it to be beautiful,” he said in a 2001 interview, “but it has to be functional.”


Picture essay





236R Bradford Street

236R Bradford Street, Farfalla, by David W. Dunlap (2010).

236R Bradford Street, Farfalla, by David W. Dunlap (2010).

Hidden deep in the woods — a fantasy spot for generations of neighborhood kids who called it “Mushroom House” — is one of the few serious works of mid-century Modernism in Provincetown. It is “Farfalla,” butterfly, in Italian; so named in 1953 by its 23-year-old architect, Donald Jasinski, and Warren Hassmer, with whom he spent summers in the cottage. They also named the nearby hill “Fair Phoebus.” The analogy to a flying creature is apt, since this little building (about 250 square feet) prefigures Eero Saarinen’s T.W.A. Flight Center at Kennedy Airport. Hassmer sold the property in 1995 to Richard “Rick” Wrigley, the developer of the Provincetown Bungalow Haven complex on adjoining property, as well as a large home on Fair Phoebus Hill. Wrigley recently power-washed Farfalla, and installed electricity and Internet service, intending to use the restored structure as his summer studio.


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.

236R Bradford Street


Farfalla (“Mushroom House”)

Hidden deep in the woods — a fantasy spot for generations of neighborhood children who knew it as the “Mushroom House” — is one of the few serious works of mid-century Modernism in Provincetown. And almost no one knows it’s there. (Be forewarned. You can’t see it from Bradford Street.) It is “Farfalla.” Butterfly, in Italian; so named in 1953 by its 23-year-old architect, Donald Jasinski, and Warren Hassmer, with whom he spent summers in the cottage. They also named the nearby hill “Fair Phoebus.” The analogy to a flying creature is especially apt, since this little building (about 250 square feet) prefigures Eero Saarinen’s T.W.A. terminal at Kennedy International Airport, whose shape is often likened to a gull in flight.

One delightful difference between this concrete shell and Saarinen’s: it’s covered in vegetation. This was a green building a half-century early. “Planting on the roof was planned as a future project,” Jasinksi told me. “Never did get to it, but Mother Nature took over.”

Though it doesn’t look at all like a dune shack, Farfalla is very much in the Provincetown tradition of freewheeling, amenity-free summer dwellings without a 90-degree angle in sight, which encouraged their occupants to be creative, to commune with nature and to keep their lives simple. In July 2010, Jasinski answered my questions about the origins of the house with this lovely account. (At the time, he was still practicing, in Waterville Valley, N.H., as Jasinski Architects International.)

“There never were any drawings,” he wrote. “It was built by marking out the plan directly on what looked like the best location on the ground, and developing the ideas for the shape and size of the structure from there. … The structure is all thin-shell concrete; i.e., rebar bent to the desired shapes, expanded metal lath attached to the rebar and white, waterproof Portland cement, hand-troweled on several coats to build up a 3- to 3-1/2-inch thickness. There is no structural steel. The strong curved forms created by the sidewalls as they bend become the floors, and replace the need for standard foundation walls.”

“It never entered our heads to get a permit,” Jasinski replied to my question about how on earth could Town Hall have allowed such an unorthodox structure in the early 1950s. Besides, he added: “It was all fireproof. It didn’t fit into any category. And Ptown is/was Ptown.”

If you detect as much Gaudí in Farfalla as Saarinen, you’re on to something. Inspired by a recent trip to Barcelona, Jasinski said he added broken bits of tile and glass to the built-in concrete kitchen counter top. The sculptural medallions embedded in the pavement were also an homage to Gaudí, he said. I happen to think the sensuous curving of the exterior wall into a window box has a certain Catalan influence, too.

Deluxe, it was not. “There is no bathroom,” Jasinski said. “We used the facilities of our neighbors, Yela Brichta, Gizi and Elemir Kardos and Diana Kemeny.” The kitchen was similarly rudimentary. “We used Sterno and other portable cooking heaters. There was no electricity. It was only meant for summer use, although there is a fireplace. We did a little cooking in it too. Nestling into the slope did help keep the better part at a constant temperature.”

Its situation, partly in the hillside, earned Farfalla another distinction. “The local kids nicknamed it the Mushroom House right away, and thought we must be elves!” Jasinski recalled. He said he had used the cottage on and off for about five years before moving on and leaving his share to Hassmer, who continued to spend summers in Farfalla, with Bob Hayward, and also used the cottage to practice the flute.

Even 50 years later, Jasinski’s fondness for Farfalla is plain.

“We loved it,” he recalled. “We wished we had the money to put in plumbing and electricity and make it bigger, but it suited our needs at the time. The garden gave us some veggies and flowers — and pleasure, too. I was satisfied in that it served its purpose. It was like a student project.”

In 1959, Jasinski and Clinton Seeley opened the East End Gallery at 491 Commercial Street, which they maintained for seven or eight years, until Jasinki moved to New Hampshire. What lessons did he draw from Farfalla? “Of course, I’ve learned to insulate properly for year-round use; i.e. double low-E glass, foam or other insulation for walls, floors and roofs,” Jasinski said, “and, above all, selecting a site with good exposure to the southern sun.”

Hassmer sold the property in 1995 to Richard P. “Rick” Wrigley, the developer of the Provincetown Bungalow Haven complex on adjoining property, as well as his own large home on Fair Phoebus Hill. Wrigley actually spent one summer in Farfalla, but then converted it into a garden shed. But he’s not through with it yet, and envisions an exterior renovation and re-landscaping.

“It is a charming structure and I would like to restore it to its former beauty,” Wrigley wrote to me in August 2010. “Several friends have suggested using it as a guest cottage. If I could solve the dampness issue — not to mention obtaining permits, and installing a bathroom — this would be a perfect use.”


Picture essay











238 Bradford Street

Provincetown Theater

Against a tradition of impromptu theater spaces, a purpose-built playhouse opened in June 2004 in the reconstructed Provincetown Mechanics garage (formerly Cape End Motors). It is now the 130-to-145-seat Provincetown Theater. It was developed by the Provincetown Theater Foundation as a home for the Provincetown Theatre Company (founded 1963) and the Provincetown Repertory Theatre (founded 1995), and designed by Brown Lindquist Fenuccio & Raber of Yarmouthport. More pictures and history »

238 Bradford Street

238 Bradford Street, the Provincetown Theater, by David W. Dunlap (2014).

238 Bradford Street, the Provincetown Theater, by David W. Dunlap (2014).

Margaret Van Sant and Jane Macdonald, by David W. Dunlap (2014).

Margaret Van Sant and Jane Macdonald, by David W. Dunlap (2014).

David Schoolman, by Jay Critchley.

David Schoolman, by Jay Critchley.

The 130-to-145-seat Provincetown Theater opened in 2004 in what had been the Provincetown Mechanics and Cape End Motors garage, under a complete renovation by Brown Lindquist Fenuccio & Raber. It is maintained and managed by the Provincetown Theater Foundation, founded in 2000 to sustain, encourage, and promote performing arts. Board members Margaret Van Sant, of CTEK Arts, and Jane Macdonald are pictured. Initial support included a grant from the David Adam Schoolman Trust, named for the proprietor (pictured) of Land’s End Inn, who died in 1995. Open year-round, the theater offers its own productions, presents movies, operates as a workshop, is rented by companies like CTEK and the Gold Dust Orphans, and is a venue for the International Film Festival and Tennessee Williams Festival.


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.

241 Bradford Street

It’s one of the largest buildings in town and — arguably — one of the ugliest. But 241 Bradford Street actually had a small role in a critical moment of national history. This storehouse was constructed as part of the U. S. Naval Mine Test Facilities in Provincetown, commissioned in 1942, which became a busy military post during World War II. In 1948, the town acquired a longterm lease from the United States for $1 and proceeded to rehabilitate the structure as the Provincetown Vocational School. The program was conducted here for 15 years before moving to Provincetown High School.

241 Bradford Street

241 Bradford Street, by David W. Dunlap (2012).

241 Bradford Street, by David W. Dunlap (2012).

Provincetown Vocational School (1963), courtesy of the Provincetown History Preservation Project.

Provincetown Vocational School (1963), courtesy of the Provincetown History Preservation Project.

It’s one of the largest buildings in town and — arguably — one of the ugliest. But No. 241 had a small role at a critical moment of national history. This warehouse was constructed as part of the Naval Mine Test Facilities, commissioned in 1942, which became a busy military post during World War II. The land had belonged to the Connell family. “The Navy took it with the promise of paying for it,” Jack Connell said in 2014. “We are still waiting.” In 1948, the town acquired a long-term lease from the United States for $1 and rehabilitated the structure as the Provincetown Vocational School. The “voke” program was conducted here for 15 years before moving to the high school. Arnold Dwyer, of Arnold’s Radio and Cycle Shop, purchased the building for storage.


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.

242 Bradford Street

242 Bradford Street, by David W. Dunlap (2008).

242 Bradford Street, by David W. Dunlap (2008).

Glenn Milstead, by Paul J. Asher-Best (ca 1977).

Glenn Milstead, by Paul J. Asher-Best (ca 1977).

No one calls lower Bradford Street “Cape Row,” but they could. It’s home to a remarkably cohesive ensemble of Cape houses, at Nos. 228, 230, 252, 258 and 260. The ruddy house at No. 242, a venerable full Cape, was built about 210 years ago. In the late ’60s, Benito Norcisa and his wife, Pamela, moved their Penny Farthing restaurant here, from 237 Bradford. For a time, their tenants included a number of John Waters stars: Glenn Milstead — the luminous and profane Divine; Channing Wilroy; and Cookie Mueller. Milstead even operated a shop here, called Divine Trash.


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.

242 Bradford Street

A venerable, classic full Cape built about 210 years ago, this house had an eccentric brush with notoriety. In the late 60s, Benito Norcisa and his wife, Pamela Norcisa, moved their Penny Farthing restaurant here, from 237 Bradford. For a time, their upstairs tenant was Glenn Milstead — better recalled as the luminous John Waters star, Divine — who ran a thrift shop here called Divine Trash. Channing Wilroy recalled that Divine sold old clothes, china, bric-a-brac and stuff from the Truro dump until he got caught for operating without a permit and hauled into Town Hall. At that point, Mink Stole came to his defense: “We need stores like this in town for people like me.”

“I lived in the bottom apartment from 2006 to 2009,” Darren Showers said in a November 2009 comment to Building Provincetown. “It’s a very charming house. I was told by the owner, Cindy Binder, that it is one of the oldest homes in Provincetown. I put the flag up on the fence: the Tibetan flag to show support on freeing Tibet. Also, Ryan Landry used to rent here.” Landry is a playwright and entertainer, and the “Showgirls” impresario.


Other resources


Tax map 15-2


Property record


Historic district survey


245 Bradford Street

Harbor Mist Condominium
The Old Whaler Cottages formed the kind of modest cottage colony around a central courtyard that one would expect to see out at Beach Point. But here it was near the middle of town. (Of course, it was not much less exposed to the elements; a hurricane in 1947 left one of the cottages partly upended.) Beginning in the early 1930s, the complex was known as the Old Whaler, under the proprietorship of John Perry Woods (±1897-1952), the son of John P. and Monica D’Avellar Woods. (“John Perry Woods,” The Advocate, Nov. 20, 1952.) More pictures and history »

246 Bradford Street

She knew much about history. She knew much geography. Mary Cecilia Lewis (1910-2001) was, for 40 years, a teacher at Provincetown High School, specializing in geography and history. (“Mary Cecilia Lewis, 91,” The Banner, Dec. 6, 2001.) She was popular enough that her home room class presented her with a cashmere sweater on her 49th birthday. She lived here most — if not all — of her life, so her presence would have loomed large in any event. But the fact that the house has largely been abandoned for the last decade makes it that much easier to imagine her ghost peering out from the shuttered windows.

Her parents, who also lived here, were Frank Joseph Lewis (b ±1880), a mail carrier, and Isabel Carmen Lewis (b ±1886). The house is currently owned by Darin Janoplis and his cousin, Mark Janoplis. (Darin Janoplis and his sister, Donna Hough, are children of Michael Janoplis Jr., the longtime proprietor of the Mayflower Café at 300 Commercial Street, and now run the restaurant.)

[Updated 2012-01-09]


 

 

 


248 Bradford Street


Among the foreground figures in Charles W. Hawthorne’s Crew of the Philomena Manta stands a small bearded fisherman with a big jug under his arm. The model for that figure seems to have been John J. Alexander Jr., who once lived in this house, which was built around 1830. His grandson Philip Alexander also lived here and was renowned, as Esta Maril said, for “the beauty and the bounty of his flowers and vegetable garden.” As a leader of the Highland Fish and Game Club, Phil Alexander favored ecologically sensitive land management — marshland preservation, for example — many years ahead of the popular environmental movement.


His sister, Mary Campbell, ran the Little Chowder Bowl restaurant at 252 Bradford. More recently, the property was owned by James R. Bakker, executive director of the Pilgrim Monument and Provincetown Museum.