Sunday, August 26, 2012

Provincetown's Commercial Street Long Ago, and Very Long Ago

This old-fashioned linen finished postcard seems to have originated with a photograph taken at the corner of Standish and Commercial streets, looking east. Notice that in this photo the First National Store was where the Governor Bradford stands today, and today's Lily Pond was the A&P of that day. At the same time there were other grocery stores in Provincetown besides these two neighborhood markets.
Who out there reading this page knows their vintage autos? What year would this have been, when car windshields still were built in two pieces? Late 30s? Early 40s?
The Lobster Pot is seen just past the intersection. The big tree in the center of the photo would appear to be the old elm tree that stood in front of the original public library, at he corner of Freeman Street. Beyond that, the spire of today's public library, at that time the Center Methodist Episcopal Church, rises 100 feet above Commercial Street, having been reduced from its 162 foot height after it was seriously damaged in the Portland Gale, in the autumn of 1898.
Below is the same intersection in a photo from the 1890s. At this time the railroad, built in 1873, came through this intersection, and there was an enormous tree a bit farther up Commercial Street. Notice the old wooden four plank sidewalk, built in 1838. It's fun to look at these old photos and try to recognize a few of today's landmarks.

1 comment:

  1. Provincetown's Commercial Street stretches along the picturesque waterfront, inviting exploration and discovery. Sign Up Hulu Lined with eclectic shops, art galleries, and eateries, it's a vibrant hub of activity.