Gloucester Through
                  Time and Art

                      Photographs and Paintings       
  Set into the History of  Gloucester, Massachusetts
                           between 1880 to 1909            



         In the summer of 1880 Winslow Homer boarded with the keeper and painted 50 of his finest watercolors of the encircling harbor. (14)

        In the Summer of 1880 several of the Gloucester fishing vessels had an opportunity for a race with crack Boston yachts, under favorable circumstances: July 27, sch. Alice M. Williams, Capt. Dennis C. Murphy, fell in with the yacht Actac off Cape Sable; the yacht put on all her light sails, and Capt. Murphy spread his riding sail and all the dory sails he could raise, and kept company with the yacht until he reached Eastern Point, when he came into port, the Actae proceeding to Boston.

        Five Pound Island in the center of
 Gloucester's inner harbor.  In the Google map above you can see how Five Pound Island was connested to the shore, becoming the State Fish Pier in 1933

        Park on Portuguese Hill

         1880 Sawyer School
From the Gloucester Daily Times

When school was on Friend Street

This weeks old photo shows the Sawyer School on Friend Street in 1880. The school was located on what is now the Friend Street Playground. The photo was submitted by Bob Roland, the athletic director at Gloucester High School. His family grew up on Friend Street.
Roland points out that the stone pillars to the fence in front of the school still exist as part of the wall in front of the playground.
The elm trees are just saplings in the photo. According to Roland they eventually grew into giant elms that surround the playground. They succumbed to dutch elm disease and hurricanes in the 1960s.
Note that the road is unpaved and that the children play along the street. The school was closed in the mid-1900s.

        “St.Ann’s rectory built on Prospect St.”  ….This was built on the site where in 1692 “Sixty men came from Ipswich to “Old Garrison House” to protect Town from ghostly visitations”.   Peg Wesson was accounted a witch, and lived there in 1745. The building was moved not far away to Smith St.. (18)

        The locally famous Peg Wesson story comes in here. Notwithstanding the severe lesson of the witchcraft delusion, belief in the existence of witches had by no means died out. The woman Wesson lived in what was then called the Garrison house, standing on the spot now occupied by the Catholic parochial residence, removed a few years since to Maplewood avenue, where it serves as a tenement house. Wesson was accounted a witch. Shortly before departing, several of Capt. Byles' company visited Peg and so exasperated her by their conduct that she threatened them with a visitation of her wrath at Louisburg. While encamped before the latter place, the attention of the Gloucester men was attracted by the peculiar actions of a crow which circled just above them. Fruitless endeavors were made to shoot the bird of ill omen. Finally a soldier suggested that the crow must be Peg Wesson transformed, according to the belief concerning the supernatural powers of witches. In this event, no bullet except one cast from silver or gold would possess the properties sufficiently potent to puncture her skin. A silver sleeve button was hastily rammed into a gun, and discharged at the bird, which fell wounded in the leg. Upon their return to Gloucester, the soldiers learned that at the precise time when the crow was wounded, Peg Wesson fell near her house receiving a fracture of the leg, and furthermore, that the doctor, on dressing the limb extracted a foreign substance from the bone which proved to be the same sleeve button fired at the crow before Louisburg. The truth of this happening as recounted was generally accepted at the time.” (19)

       Possibly the old Garrison House??

        The Rectory today with the Old Garrison House behind?

        The Lobster Fisherman, Salt Island

The last Gloucester-built dory to cross the Atlantic was the Little Western, also built by Messrs. Higgins & Gifford. She was 16 ft. 7 in. over all, 13 ft. 6 in. keel, 6 ft. 8 in. beam and 2 ft. 6 in. deep, clinker-built, cutter-rigged, and spread 51 yards of canvas. Manned by George S. Thomas and Fred. Norman. She sailed from Gloucester June 12, 1880, and arrived at Cowes July 28, forty-six days from Gloucester. She sailed from London June 14, 1881, on the return trip, arrived at Port Median, C. B., Aug. 28, at Halifax, N. S., Sept. 2, and at Gloucester Sept. 15, being the only one of the Gloucester-built dories to make the ocean passage both ways.

         Higgins & Gifford Boat Shop at the head of the harbor.

         Gloucester National Bank on the corner of Main Street and Duncan.
 Looking down, into Duncan St., with the harbor at the end.

        Detail of a Fitz Henry Lane painting of Gloucester's outer harbor with the Pavillion Hotel on the shore..( left)


        Western Ave. in the background, shoreside road in Stage Fort Park.

        Pavillion Beach running along Western Ave.

         the Pavillion Hotel at the end of Western Ave. today the site of the Tavern, but then, "nearly the first seaside resort hotel on the North Shore."  (14)

        Cressey's Beach with bathers

        Widows' Home
This house was built for fishermen's widows in Gloucester around 1870. It had ten apartments of three rooms each. Rent for each apartment was $3 per month.

        Gloucester's new City Hall:
   "It was built in 1870 and dedicated the following year, and has served as the main location for the city's offices since then." Wikipedia

        “CITY HALL BUILT. Immediate action was taken by the citizens to rebuild. At a town meeting called to consider the subject a short time afterwards, James Davis, Esq., moved that $90,000, which included the insurance on the old building, be appropriated for the erection of a new town house. The motion was carried by a large majority. Plans of Bryant & Rogers of Boston, were afterwards decided upon for the structure and the contract for the mason work was awarded to Albert Currier of Newburyport, and D. Somes Watson and H. Clough were awarded the carpenter's work. Its cost was $100,000; with furnishings, $110,000.” (19)

         THE BELMONT is within a minutes walk of City Hall.
                                    Population of City 19,000

        From the west end of town, looking out over Harbor Cove, toward the end of Rocky Neck with Eastern Point beyond.

        Looking down into the inner harbor
 from the Rocky Neck shore near the Paint Factory.

        On Main St., fork with Spring St. to the left and Union Hill rising to the right.

         "Boy in a Boat"                                         "Boys in a Dory"
          "Boys Fishing" Below

        " Five Children on the Shore"   
              by Winslow-Homer

        Above….All by Winslow Homer


                         Gill-Net Codfishing in Ipswich Bay

The Winter of 1880-81 will be memorable in local fishing annals as witnessing the first successful attempt at net-fishing for cod in our waters, a method that promises to make as marked a change in the shore fishery as was wrought by the introduction of trawl fishing a few years previously. This method of fishing has long been followed by the Newfoundland fishermen, and it is said that the Norwegians take half the number and two-thirds the weight of their immense catch of codfish in this manner.
   Impressed with the importance of the saving made in the cost of bait, and of time consumed in procuring bait, Prof. Baird decided in the Summer of 1878, when the Summer quarters of the Fish Commission were located in Gloucester, to experiment as to the practicability of introducing the Norwegian methods in our waters. Accordingly, he procured a set of Norwegian gill nets, which attracted considerable attention at the laboratory of the Commission at Fort Wharf, from their novel construction and curious glass floats. When the Winter school of codfish set in, in the Fall of 1878, experiments were made with these nets on the "Old Man's Pasture," but it was found that the nets were too frail for the large cod which frequent our coast in Winter, and for the strong current and rocky bottom along our shores. The result of the experiment, however, was such as to indicate that netfishing might be made practicable, with properly constructed nets, and Prof. Baird continued his investigation of the method, and on the occasion of the International Fisheries Exhibit at Berlin in the Spring of 1880 delegated Capt. Joseph W. Collins of Gloucester to make a careful study of the European methods of deep sea fishing, the result of which has been published by the Government for the information of the American fishermen.       (15)

         "Through the kindness of Collector Babson we are enabled to give the following statistics : For the year ending Dec. 31, 1881, there arrived at the port of Gloucester, 1 ship, 18 barks, 2 brigs, and 182 schooners from foreign ports. 27 ships, barks, brigs and schooners arrived from Cadiz, Trapani and other salt ports."     (15)

         Light House and Keeper's Cottage on Ten Pound Island
 in Gloucester's outer harbor.

         "In The Studio"   by Marie-Bashkirtseff

        "Fishermens Houses, Cape Ann" by Stephen-Maxfield-Parrish


        "Group of Portuguese fishermen in front of outfitting store of John Pew and Son"

         Wharf scene along the inner harbor,
schooner hauled up on one of the early railways in the background.

         "The above engraving gives a capital view of the old Fort and Gloucester Harbor in 1837. The Grand Banker and pinkey lying at anchor look as natural as can be. There is a vast difference in the appearance of the old Fort property of today from that of forty-five years agone. Then it had but one building besides the ruins of the Fort - now it is covered with dwellings and storehouses, and its entire waterfront converted into fine wharves, forming one of the most valuable pieces of property in the city."             (15)

        "Before the house at 265 East Main St was built the lot was owned by Herbert and John Wennerberg, whose business was supplying the vessels in the harbor with fresh water. From their stone reservoir in the south corner of the front yard a gravity pipe slanted out over the cove on a trestle. When a schooner wanted water, the cook would run up a bucket in the rigging, the summons to the Wennerbergs to come alongside in their cat-rigged water boat Wanderer and fill'er up." p.81            (14)

       Georges Bank fishing schooner securing supply of water from water boat in Gloucester 1882.

       Gate Lodge at the entrance to Eastern Point, built in 1888.

        Carting salt fish up Prospect St.   From the post "Then and Now" by Brenda Davis.

        Annisquam coach

        Cape Ann National Bank, Main Street… with the Sawyer Free Library above .

        Dollivers Grocery on Main St.

        Fish Market on the corner of Main and Pleasant(?) by Corliss and Ryan Photographers.

        "Fair Breeze by Arthur Quartley


         January 1883 ... Howard Blackburn and dory mate were separated from the schooner Grace L. Fears in a storm. Five days at sea before coming to land with a dead dorymate and Blackburn loosing his fingers from being frozen to the oars.

        Methodist Church built on Prospect St.

               by Winslow Homer


         Collins School perfect attendance  award to Lizzie Wells 

        "The Castle, Dogtown"  
        by Audella Beebe Hyatt

        "Gloucester Mackerel Fleet at Dawn" by Winslow Homer

        "Gloucester Mackerel Fleet at Sunset" by Winslow Homer

The Gloucester Lyceum was formed February 2, 1830, and in
1850 a library was started in connection. It had a precarious existence
until 1871, when Samuel E. Sawyer gave the institution $10,-
ooo and the name of the Sawyer Free Library was attached to the
institution. On February i, 1884, Mr. Sawyer purchased the estate
on the corner of Middle Street and Dale Avenue for $20,000 and
deeded it to trustees as a perpetual gift to the citizens for a library
home accompanied by an endowment gift of $20,000 additional.
At his death he bequeathed the institution $100,000 more, but at
present his will is being contested.    (13)


        First (horse drawn) streetcars succeeded stage coaches.  (18)

        Gloucester stagecoach in East Gloucester Square.

        East Gloucester Methodist
 organized September 23, 1885

        Frank E. Davis Fish Company, mail order fish business, established.   (18)

        St. Ann's Catholic Church

         Sawyer Free Library from Middle St., with the City Hall in the background.

        "In the 1890s and early 1900s, 4' 10" Martha Hale (Rogers) Harvey (1862-1949) was a often seen roaming about Annisquam, lumping a mammoth box camera, tripod and a box of 11" x 14" glass negatives, taking landscape photos. She grew up on Prospect Court, and In 1884 she married artist George Wainwright Harvey, and the two of them set up shop in Annisquam."

 I grew up in the house next door to her family (Rogers) home…born the year she died. 

         Self Portrait, Farquhar McGillivray Knowles

        "Self Portrait" by Cecilia Beaux

        "The Fog Warning-Halibut Fishing"
                      by Winslow Homer

        "The Coral Divers" by Winslow Homer
           (vacationing in the islands)


        "Moorland Path, Cape Ann" by Joseph Rodefer DeCamp


The city is fortunate in the possession of two homes for the dependent
aged. The Huntress Home on Prospect Street was purchased
in 1887, for $12,000. It was erected a few years before as a
private residence and was considered the finest of the kind in the
city. Its cost was $30,000. It was purchased by money bequeathed
for the purpose by Joseph Huntress, a native of Gloucester (13)

        Canvas #97   The Explorer II and Huntress Home.      L.A.Dahlmer
        The Huntress Home with its "widow's walk" rises above Prospect Square as seen from the inner harbor today.

        "The Ten Cent Breakfast"by Willard Leroy Metcalf

        "Artist at Work"
by  Charles Courtney Curran 

        "Undertow" by Winslow Homer

"The gate lodge of friendly but firm design erected at the bend by the syndicate which in 1887 bought the Niles Farm marks the beginning of this private domain, initially of summer estates, and of Eastern Point Boulevard."    (14)

        Stream enclosed from Harbor Swamp ( Burnham's Field) to Pavilion Beach.    (18)

        St. Ann's Catholic School built.   (18)
 St. Ann's Catholic  Church dedicated.   (18)


        P. 338
THE GLOUCESTER ELECTRIC LIGHT Co. was started in 1884 and in 1888 was sold to the Gloucester Electric Co., the original equipment being one 5 horse power engine and two dynamos. The new company pushed business and in 1891 erected a fine brick building at Vincent's Point, 102x52 feet, near the old establishment. It contains many
novel improvements, gallery, bath-rooms, chambers, offices, etc. The equipment consists of two compound condensing engines, 300 horse-power each and boilers to match, two arc machines, one 1,300 incandescent dynamo and one 40 horse-power generator. Near by the company has a fine wharf, with dock of deep water, and coal sheds of a capacity of 900 tons. There is ample room for further extensions. The president is
W. H. Jordan, the treasurer and manager.

        Rogers St., Porter to Water St. with wharves running out into Harbor Cove.

        Layout of Five Pound Island from the 1888 Sanborn Map.

         Elizabeth Boott Duveneck
          by Frank Duveneck

        "Old Gloucester Shore"
                               by William Goodrich Beal

        "Eastern Point Light" by Clement Drew

                "Gloucester Seiners"

        "Alexander Harrison"
          by Cecilia Beaux 



        Gloucester to Boston.

        The High school-house on Dale Avenue was erected in 1888 and '89, the total cost, including land, being $100,000. This building, one of the most imposing and commodious of its kind in New England, is built of brick with granite trimmings. (19)

        Good Harbor Beach
 looking towards Salt Island.

        Blynmen Bridge being hand-cranked open

        "Summertime, Afternoon Tea"
            by Rhoda Holmes Nicholls 



        In colonial days a sentinel grove of oaks landmarked the end of Eastern Point for mariners. It succumbed to time and tempest, and in 1829 the government was persuaded to buy an acre and build a stone monument, a day beacon to which a whale oil lamp and a cottage for Keeper Wonson were added two years later. The lighthouse was built anew on its old foundation in 1848, and rebuilt in 1890 as it is today, 57 feet above sea level, visible on a clear night 13 miles. (14)

        Electric trolley cars introduced. (18)
First Trip of electric trolley cars made to Annisquam. (18)

        Trolley tracks come to Main St.

        Above, looking down Short St. onto Main St., pictured on the right.

        "Market Street Scene, Gloucester
              by Louis M.Woodroofe

        Centennial Avenue under construction junction of Commonwealth and Emerson Avenues

        Left...Trolley passing through Riverdale on the way to Annisquam.
 Right… over the trestle at Plum Cove

        East Gloucester Square with horse drawn carriages, but in the distance
 the electric trolley can be seen making its way to Rocky Neck.

         Looking down from Banner Hill at the end of Chapel St. intersecting with East Main St.

        Canvas # 163   East Gloucester Trolley bound for turnaround
        at Last Stop               L.A.Dahlmer

         Frederick Childe Hassam's watercolor of Rocky Neck's causeway looking towards the intersection with East Main St., pictured above at the end of Smith Cove.

        "Axel B. Dahlmer's Civil War Record from the 1890 Census of Leelanau, Michigan. He served as a Seaman on the ship USS City of New York from 5 Jul.1893 to 12 Aug.1895. Foreign nationals who served honorably in the Civil War were granted American Citizenship on their discharge. Axel was from Sweden and was my great grandfather. "   cousin Bill Hubbard  

        Schooner heading out of Harbor Cove, East Gloucester in the background

        The Puritan House with an electric trolley car passing by on Main St.


        Good Harbor Beach

        Self Portrait byJohn French Sloan

         by Winslow Homer

        "Sleigh Ride, Moonlight on the Snow"
               by Winslow Home

        "Gloucester" by Rufus Way Smith


        From Gloucester, Before the Mast
Taken in 1891 outside the Slade Gorton Company at Gloucester, Mass.,,,From left: Thomas “Tommy” Slade Gorton Sr. (the senator’s grandfather), an unidentified Gorton son-in-law, Issac Gould. a skipper and fisherman, Tom Carroll, the general manager, and Nathaniel L. Gorton, the senator’s grand-uncle. Gould was lost at sea aboard the fishing schooner Columbia in a 1927 gale.
Gorton family album

        Sayward's-Wharf-and-a-frozen-Gloucester Harbor 1891. Gordon W.Thomas Collection C_O-J 

         Loading the seine.

        The Hawthorne Inn and cottages were built in 1891 and housed up to 500 guests.

        Dining Room, Hawthorne Inn, Lodges and Cottages
                       East Gloucester, Massachusetts

        "Untitled" by Webb Elwell


        Itinerant Italian musicians stroll down Stoddart Lane playing the ciaramella (left) and zampogna (right), circa 1892.

        Stoddart Lane was named for A.P. Stoddart & Company, manufacturers of the mechanized steering wheels used on many of the Gloucester schooners. 

        Percy Wheeler photograps from Cape Ann Museum

        ADAM P. STODDART & SON, 236 Main Street, "carry on the general machinists'business, with complete facilities for constructing and building steam engines and machinery of all kinds. Their specialty is improved vessels' steering wheels, which are meeting with much success. (13)

         Iside of Wheeler's boatbuilding shop.

        Looking down into Cripple Cove, with "Parker's Hill"on the other side, beyond, the head of the harbor and the east end of town.

         Eastern Point "cottages"

        Inside the shop with what looks to be a fine"yachty" launch in storage.

        Cripple Cove today.

        Schooner drying her sails tied up to Percy Wheeler's wharf in Cripple Cove.

         The Fire Station in East Gloucester

        Fish Hatchery on Ten Pound Island in Gloucester Harbor.


JAMES E. SHELBOURNE Fisheries Laboratory, Lowestoft, England

The idea that artificial propagation could influence the yield from inshore waters originated in the New World, and was the consequence of achievements in fresh-water fish rearing. Remarkable progress in culturing and transplanting the shad (Alosa sapidis- sima), undoubtedly influenced the first U.S. Commissioner of Fisheries (Spencer F. Baird) in his decision to try artificial propagation as a possible means of counteracting depletion in the food-fisheries of the Atlantic seaboard.
Earl1 (1880) reported the successful hatching of cod, haddock, herring and pollock eggs during preliminary experiments a t Gloucester, Massachusetts, in 1878. It was not until 1885 that the U.S. Fish Commission built its first commercial fish hatchery at Woods Hole. Facilities for cod propagation were extended at Gloucester Station in 1888, followed by the construction of a third east coast hatchery at Boothbay Harbor, Maine in 1905.
By 1917, the total output of newly-hatched fry from the three American hatcheries had risen to over 3 billion per annum.

…..the American effort continued at a high level of production until 1943, when Woods Hole was taken over by the Navy Department. The Boothbay Harbor hatchery closed down in 1950, followed by Gloucester Station in 1952. The demise of American sea-fish culture was accompanied by the following terse official statement . . . “Hatchery production of marine commercial fish species was terminated in 1952 since research had failed to disclose that worthwhile benefits were obtained from such stocking.” (Duncan and Meehean, 1954).
...The Americans preferred to rely on salvaged spawn, particularly at Gloucester and Boothbay Harbor. ‘Spawtakers’, operating from New England fishing vessels, selected ripe fish from the catch, and carried out artificial fertilizations using a standard technique. Fertile eggs were transported to the nearest hatchery by first train after the ship docked.
As early as 1883, only five years after the first experimental release of cod-fry, the US. Fish Commission reported the appearance of gray cod of a size not previously seen in coastal waters around Gloucester Station. They were generally accepted as the fruits of hatchery effort and became known locally as “Fish Commission cod.” In 1898, Herdman (1889), director of the Manx hatchery, received a letter from the U.S. Fish Commissioner. which read. . . . “For about ten pears the cod work has been attended with marked success, and in Massachusetts, has resulted, not only in establishing the inshore cod fishery on grounds long exhausted, but through favorable distribution of the fry, in extending the fishery to waters not originally frequented by the cod.” As late as 1929, statements were being made to the effect that the winter flounder became more abundant after planting newly-hatched fry.

        Corner of Roger St. and Duncan St.

        Arch for the exhibition about where the Joan of Arc statue stands today.

        Eastern Point Lighthouse and fog horn.

         Arrow shows site of spring.

        Schooner "Grayling" heading out of the harbor.

        "Gloucester Morning" by Anthony Thieme

        "At The Seaside"
by William Merritt-Chase 


        Kellehers opened in Gloucester in 1893, an easy walk from the wharves.  I carved the sign for the business in the mid-1980's

Rocky Neck looms up after leaving the " Square,  and it would be well to drive across the causeway when we reach it and visit another flourishing section of East Gloucester. Rocky Neck will, this season, enter her name on the list as a summer resort. Mr. Frank Foster, a retired sea captain, has added an annex to the " Rackliffe House " on Fremont street, the old homestead
of his wife's parents, which commands a beautiful view of the outer harbor. Ten Pound Island, Magnolia and Fresh Water Cove, and with its other
natural quaint surroundings and extensive grounds, its proximity to the electrics and ferry, and its short distance from the resorts at Eastern Point, promises to become an enviable and attractive retreat for summer visitors.

        Later on to become the "Rockaway"

...      A little farther on, the popular Delphine, where for season after season such noted persons as Prof. Geo. E. Whiting, Prof. Louis C. Elson, Walter L. Dean and Childe Hassom have watched the growth and popularity of their favored resort. The charming cottage opposite the Delphine has been called Hassom Cottage in honor of its noted occupant, Childe Hassom. The Delphine is under the management of Mr. and
Mrs. Simpson Lyle, and has been greatly improved upon this season.       (20)

        The Delphine

        Looking west from the grounds of the Delphine House, Rocky Neck beyond.

        The Gate House
Leaving this locality we pass through the gate, which stands at the entrance of the Eastern Point Associates' property, by its ivy covered stone Gate Lodge, and can now enjoy a drive along the broad, smooth road, which has been built at the upper edge of what has been known as Niles' Beach,
This is the main plaisance of the whole summer colony, for here we meet the bicyclists, the promenaders, the bathers, the yachters, the driving parties and
the artists, all of whom make this their promenade.

        The Beechcroft Hotel
To our left we notice the '' Beachcroft," occupying a fine position on the upland adjoining the beach, which gets the finest ocean view of any hotel here,
and all the advantages of boating and bathing. This hotel is under the supervision of Mr. and Mrs. Thomas
E. Day, and has always been especially attractive to Buffalonians (N. Y.), such as Rev. Dr. Lobdell, the noted divine of that city. Judge Foster of the Buffalo
Commercial^ F. S. Duvernick, the noted sculptor, of Boston, and many others.

        Around 1917

         Around 1929

        Looking down Niles Beach towards Eastern Point

        Harbor View Hotel on Wonson Cove, East Gloucester

        "The Artist Doorway"
       by Laura Stroud Ladd

        "Life Saving Patrol" byEdward Moran


        Gloucester has always been America's greatest fishing port, is even tray one of the most important in the world.  Of its 24,000 population, most male adults are engaged in the fishing industry.

         Oliver Ingersol, standing in the companionway.

        "Self Portrait" by Cecilia Beaux


                            Joshua Slocum. Sailing Alone Around the World
April 24,1895,        ....left Boston for Gloucester

I made for the cove, a lovely branch of Gloucester's fine harbor, again to look the Spray over and again to weigh the voyage, and my feelings, and all that. The bay was feather-white as my little vessel tore in, smothered in foam. It was my first experience of coming into port alone, with a craft of any size, and in among shipping. Old fishermen ran down to the wharf for which the Spray was heading, apparently intent upon braining herself there. I hardly know how a calamity was averted, but with my heart in my mouth, almost, I let go the wheel, stepped quickly forward, and downed the jib. The sloop naturally rounded in the wind, and just ranging ahead, laid her cheek against a mooring-pile at the windward corner of the wharf, so quietly, after all, that she would not have broken an egg. Very leisurely I passed a rope around the post, and she was moored. Then a cheer went up from the little crowd on the wharf. "You could n't 'a' done it better," cried an old skipper, " if you weighed a ton! “ Now, my weight was rather less than the fifteenth part of a ton, but I said nothing, only putting on a look of careless indifference to say for me, "Oh, that 's nothing "; for some of the ablest sailors in the world were looking at me, and my wish was not to appear green, for I had a mind to stay in Gloucester several days. Had I uttered a word it surely would have betrayed me, for I was still quite nervous and short of breath. I remained in Gloucester about two weeks, fitting out with the various articles for the voyage most readily obtained there. The owners of the wharf where I lay, and of many fishing-vessels, put on board dry cod galore, also a barrel of oil to calm the waves. They were old skippers themselves, and took a great interest in the voyage. They also made the Spray a present of a " fisherman's own “ lantern, which I found would throw a light a great distance round. Indeed, a ship that would run another down having such a good light aboard would be capable of running into a light-ship. A gaff, a pugh, and a dip-net, all of which an old fisherman declared I could not sail without, were also put aboard. Then, too, from across the cove came a case of copper paint, a famous antifouling article, which stood me in good stead long after. I slapped two coats of this paint on the bottom of the Spray while she lay a tide or so on the hard beach.

.....The weather was mild on the day of my departure from Gloucester. On the point ahead, as the Spray stood out of the cove, was a lively picture, for the front of a tall factory was a flutter of handkerchiefs and caps. Pretty faces peered out of the windows from the top to the bottom of the building, all smiling hon voyage. Some hailed me to know where away and why alone. Why ? When I made as if to stand in, a hundred pairs of arms reached out, and said come, but the shore was dangerous. The sloop worked out of the bay against a light southwest wind, and about noon squared away off Eastern Point, receiving at the same time a hearty salute — the last of many kindnesses to her at Gloucester.

        WHITE -ELLERY HOUSE   Old Ellery House                    
               photograph by Martha Hale Harvey

        In the late 1890's Gloucester had electric trolleys connecting the different sections of the city.  The picture on the left shows the intersection of Bass Ave., Hartz St. and Saywood St.. The large building was the trolley barn, later to become the bus barn.

        Largest wharf covered an acre and was owned by Atlantic Halibut Company. (18)

        "Effie Morrissey" launched at Essex

        "Summer Day, Gloucester"
         by Willard Leroy Metcalf 

        "East Gloucester-End of Trolly Line
                         by Childe Hassam 

        "Gloucester" by Frederick Childe Hassam

        "Walking on the Pier" by Childe-Hassam

        "Lal Davis" by Augustus Waldeck Buhler

        "Fish Wharves, Gloucester" by Willard Leroy Metcalf  (1896)


          Long Beach and Rockport connected by trolley line. (18)

          "Long Beach starts in Gloucester and ends in Rockport, and the Long Beach Pavilion was once a popular stop for tourists traveling from one town to the other — provided they were traveling by foot, because Thatcher Road had not yet been constructed. The electric trolley from Gloucester to Long Beach was built in the late 1800s and the trolley company constructed this pavilion in 1895. Within it were a restaurant, dance hall, bowling alley and vaudeville theater."

        The trolley company constructed the Pavilion at Long Beach, it had a  restaurant, dance hall, bowling alley and vaudeville theater.

          The trolley also ran to Rocky Neck, turning around at the "Last Stop" variety store (now Sailor Stan's).  In John Sloan's painting, the trolley has just left Rocky Neck, picking up passengers for the ride into town. 

        Corner of East Main St. and Plum St. with the trolley tracks heading over toward Rocky Neck.

          Canvas #163 Trolley heading toward Rocky Neck, passing Wonson's wharf.

        "After crossing the causeway, we turn to the right, driving up Patches Hill, pass the Harbor View Hotel, with all its modern improvements, its fine beach for bathing and its long pier, the popular and fashionable boat landing and after-dinner
promenade. This hotel is especially attractive to Washingtonians…"   (20)
  In the postcard on the left it was about 1907.

          The Trolley Barn at the intersection of Bass Ave. Hartz St. and Saywood Ave.

        Top pf Portuguese Hill.

        Above, circus parade coming down Main St.. On the right, further down in the "West End".

        Hotel Moorland: built in 1896 to house 300 guests; it burned in 1958.

        Addison Gilbert Hospital

        "Thatchers Island" done by the Louis Prang and Co. , Boston

        "Fishermans Return, Gloucester"
by Edward Henry Potthast 


             p. xxix
“… from 1880 through 1897 Gloucester lost 264 vessels and 1614 fishermen.” (9)

       Looking west on Main St.. Just beyond the carriage, Duncan St. to the left, Pleasant St. to the right.  Gray's hardware in the center.

      Gloucester National Bank on Main St. with Duncan St. to the left.

        Customs House and Post Office on the corner of Main and Pleasant street.

        Looking south down Dale Ave. from Prospect St., city hall rising at the end.  Later in 1935 the new Post Office would be built on the left, beyond the carriage.

        Addison Gilbert Hospital built.

        Addison Gilbert

        "Rocks at Gloucester" by Lewis Henry Meakin

        "On The Terrace"
 by John Henry Twachtman

        "Breakfast in Bed" by Mary Cassatt

        "Gloucester Docks"
         by Ernest Ludvig Ipsen

        Original Illustration from "Captains Courageous" by Isaiah West Taber


           View from the City Hall in 1898 from the archives of the Cape Ann Museum

        At the entrance to Smith Cove, on the eastern shore next to the ferry dock, stood the yard of N.M.Jackman. 
 Pictured here with his crew, probably relations, they stand with the tools of their trade.  Man with plank, boy on tricycle,
man with a maul, man with paint and brush, younger man with a saw, man with batten, probably N.M. himself, a boy with hat, and a man

with a sledge hammer.  The sign proclaims that they repair boats and dories and that they do vessel work on short notice. The sign also carries the insignia of the Masons, maybe to help entice new business, giving them an edge.

           The "Little Giant" steaming across Smith Cove to the ferry landing,
             Rocky Neck in the background.
 "From the public landing in the small cove by the street Captain Wonson first rowed his passengers across to Duncan's point in 1849. Then there were various small steam ferries, and the Douglasses' sailboat when the weather favored. Finally a narrow trestle walk was built 375 feet from the street into the dock between the wharves for access to the famous little steamer "Little Giant". On demand the ferry touched at Tarr"s Wharf off the end of Rocky Neck. The fare remained four cents for years."   (14)

        Ferry stop at the end of Rocky Neck….

        Above left, the end of the ferry pier, and right, you can see the pier running out from East Main Street, just off East Gloucester Square.  Behind it sits what is known as "Pirates Lane", the two large buildings are: the Art Association to the left and condominiums to the right.

        Steam Ferry "Little Giant" model  byJohn Gardner

        Storm damage, looking down into the inner harbor from Rocky Neck

         Pinkey anchored off Five Pound Island, and the "Mary" in 1905 off of the Surfside.

        Chief Hollow Horn Bear, Sioux


        August 18, 1899
Howard Blackburn sails the Great Western from Gloucester, Mass. to Gloucester, England.  The Great Western was built by Hugh Bishop.

         from the 1899-1900 Gloucester Business Directory
Fenton Archibald, ship carpenter and boat builder, 56 Rocky Neck av. house 51/2 Radcliffe

Blackburn Howard, billiards and pool, 2931/2 Main, house 289 do.

-------A portion of Issac Patch's land opposite
Niles Beach. 

         Good Harbor Beach

        Hotel Thorwald opened in 1899 with rooms for 200-250 guests; it burned 1965

         Packing Cod

by Frederick Childe Hassam 


         The prosperity of Gloucester’s fisheries declined in the beginning of the 20th century. The use of steam and internal combustion engines, increased foreign competition, and changing target species decreased fishery productivity and affected Gloucester’s economy. (8)

               Eastern Point Lighthouse

        Launch of the Schooner Helen Miller Gould in Vincent Cove March 29, 1900.

        "Howard Blackburn was a portly Gloucester saloonkeeper of forty-one when he had Archibald Fenton build the twenty-five foot sloop "Great Republic in 1900 for his second single-handed crossing of the Atlantic, to Portugal the next year. (6)

         The Blacburn Building
Built in 1900 by Gloucester's all-time
fisherman-sailor hero, Howard Blackburn, for his saloon and home.

         The tower in the photograph above is the second tower from the left in the photograph above that. Blackburn's building is just out of the picture to the left. Vincent Cove has been filled.

                                           BLACKBURN’S BLOCK

                    New Structure on Main Street Practically Completed.

                  Will Be Used by Owner for Business and Residence

Mr. Howard Blackburn’s brick and stone block, No.289 Main Street, is practically completed, and he has moved his licensed saloon business to the first floor of the block and will open this evening at 7 o’clock. The building is 40 feet-deep, with a frontage on Main street of 21 feet and rises three stories above the ground.
The ground floor and rear basement will be used by Mr. Blackburn in his business. The ground floor is finished in antique oak and mahogany with steel ceiling and mirror 15x41/2 feet at each end of the counters.
The second and third floors will be used by Mr. Blackburn as a residence. Comfortable and well lighted staircases lead to each flight. On the second floor is the kitchen fitted with set tubs etc. also the dining room and parlor.


The second and third floors are finished in natural light wood, varnished and shellacked except the parlor which is of white enamel, with fine fireplace, boarded by enamel work of pretty and attractive design. The apartments are all well lighted and airy. The building is heated through out by hot water and fitted with gas and electricity.

............The new block is a fine one in every particular, and Mr. Blackburn's many friends wish him a long life to enjoy it.

        Blynman Bridge over the Annisquam River on Western Ave.

         1900 - 1973
 "Lifesaving Station at Coast Guard base on Dolliver's Neck."     (18)

         Canvas #155 Dolliver's Neck Life Saving Station.

        The Return from the Wreck, Life-saving Crew,
               Dolliver's Neck, Gloucester, Mass.   

        Canvas #159   Building Last Stop, on East Main St. opposite one of Isaac Patch's ice houses, before Ledge Rd. was put in.               L.A.Dahlmer

             from the Gloucester Daily Times               August 14, 1900

                                              Burned At Last

                   Patch's Ice Houses Totally Destroyed Last Evening

                     Flames Shot High in Air and Endangered Dwellings

The two old ice houses belonging to the Patch estate on Mount pleasant Avenue East Gloucester, were leveled to the ground Monday evening by fire and all that remains of the relics of the former flourishing industry in that locality is a mass of charred and smouldering ruins.

Fires in those buildings have been frequent……..The department to extinguish the flames…...
The same box those buildings. …...
Four times the firemen were successful in either extinguishing the flames, or at lease checking their progress, but lost night the fire had too much of a hold on the buildings, and swept through them with lightening like rapidity and seemingly fiendish delight in the destruction they were accomplishing.
Mr. Charles Blake first saw the smoke issuing from the building about 10 minutes of seven. He hastened to the box; and sent in the alarm. It seemed but a moment from the time of his seeing the first streaks of smoke until the buildings were a roaring, crackling mass of flames, and before the alarm could be sounded, the blaze had reached proportions with which it was impossible to successfully cope. The ice houses were doomed.
It was than a question as to whether destroy the adjacent buildings. The flames leaped high in the air, the smoke rose skyward in a dense black mass, and from the points of vantage in the city proper it seemed as if the entire locality would be swept clean of buildings before the fire was extinguished.
But if the blaze was rapid in its movements, the firemen were not slow, and water was poured into the blazing mass by the Defiance and N.M. Jackman engines.
The northerly wall being wrested of its supports fel outward, carrying with it a sheet of fire which communicated with the house across the street, burning the upper front portion considerably. This building is owned by Mrs. Roland Brewer and occupied by Capt. H. D. Mallett and family. Just five minutes before the alarm sounded Capt. Mallett was walking on his piazza and saw no sign of either smoke or fire, and had just sat down to supper when he heard a boy cry "fire " and looking across the street saw the ice house a mess of flames.

As the front of the ice house fell over it carried the electric light wire with it, and shortly after Chief Engineer Crowe's horse in passing that point, stepped upon the wire and sustained a shock which through the animal to its knees, but quickly recovered and was led away. The electric light pole to the eastward of the ice house had a small pyrotechnial display all to itself, where the wire had parted and clung to the support.

At 7:20 o'clock the ice houses were leveled to the ground. The sparks from the fire were carried a considerable distance, many finding a lodgement on the houses at Rocky Neck. The residences of Archie Fenton and John G. Mehlman at the Neck caught on the roof, but sustained little damage.

           Proposed new YMCA,
 corner of Middle and Hancock streets.

        "Eastern Point" by Winslow Homer

        "Gloucester Fishermen's Houses"
              by John Henry-Twachtman

        "Dockside" by Henry Snell

        "Gloucestermen Going Home"
                 by Warren Sheppard

        "That Summer Afternoon, In My          
           Garden" by Frank Duveneck

        "Gloucester" by Paul Cornoyer


         July 18, 1901
Howard Blackburn sails the Great Republic from Gloucester to Lisbon Portugal in 39 days, a voyage of 2800 miles (2)

          Canvas #143       Howard Blackburn sailing "Great Republic"  down Smith Cove, with Rocky Neck in the background.         L.A.Dahlmer

        Lower Main St., Gray's Hardware would be first building on the left.

        "Bertha Hallowell Vaughan by Cecilia Beaux

        "Jetty at Low Tide"
 by Joseph Rodefer DeCamp

        "Fish Sheds" byJohn Henry Twachtman

        "Twin Lights from Bass Rocks"
 by Harry Spiers


         "First large steam-powered fishing vessel built."     (18)

        Rocky Neck at the turn of the century.  Electric trolley crossing the causeway.
 Paddle wheel ferry tied up to the Wonson pier.

        "Echo and Narcissus"
 by John William Waterhouse

        "Mrs. Ernest Major"
 by Joseph Rodefer DeCamp


         "America" -  Capt. Blackburn on his way to France

         Photos of Capt. Blackburn and his 15.5 foot dory, taken at Clark's Harbor on his way to Havre France June 27th 1903.  This is his third voyage across the Atlantic. And this boat is the smallest that has ever attempted to cross it.  He left Gloucester on the 7th of June 1903.

             Capt. Blackburn     The Lone Voyager

          Drying Gill Nets on their net reels in Charlevoix, Mi.. When the fishermen migrated to Gloucester they brought along this design, and some are still be used today. Back then the nets were made of linen threads that had to be dried out. Modern nets are synthetic but they are still reeled to take out any snarls and repacked so that they can be set out again.

        The net reels on the wharf in                 East Gloucester

       Reeling nets back in Michigan

        Capt. John A. Dahlmer's fish tug, "John Smith". Shown here gill netting on Lake Michigan.

        Canvas #16        17 Rocky Neck Ave.,  built by Frank Foster in the winter of 1903.   Gallery of Edward Buhler, and one of the first art galleries on Rocky Neck.                            L.A.Dahlmer

  "In 1885, he began spending summers in Gloucester, and historian William Gerdts describes Buhler as an artist who "best represents the resident Gloucester painter."" from

        This painting by Buhler was the inspiration for Gloucester’s “Man at the Wheel” sculpture by Leonard Craske.

        Above left, and below, Buhler sitting in his studio, and on the right his wife in front of 17 Rocky Neck Ave.

         Intersection today.

         Intersection of Rocky Neck Ave., Freemont St. and Wonson St.
          Winter, before 17 Rocky Neck Ave. cottage was built. 

        Looking down ice-bound Smith Cove toward Rocky Neck.The Pier was Wonson's, now (2014) it's long gone but the stubs of the pilings can still be seen protruding from the mud-flats at low tide, from the parking lot at the entrance to Rocky Neck.

        In the picture on the left can be seen the remnants of the pilings that made up the pier in the photograph above.

        Skating on a frozen Smith Cove.

        Looking out to 10 Pound Island and right what today is the Building Center


         Dog Bar Breakwater was constructed between 1894 and 1904 by the Army Corps of Engineers to provide sheltered waters in the outer harbor. The breakwater protects outer harbor waters from southerly storms. The breakwater is 2,250 feet, running west from Eastern Point towards the western shore. (16)

        Dog Bar Breakwater under construction

        Eastern Point Light showing Mother Ann.

        "A" shows 141 Main St. today

         Charlevoix Sentinal        May 5, 1904
   The fishing tug L. W. Knapp arrived here last week from Dunkirk, NY in charge of Capt. John Dahlmer, to do summer fishing at Beaver Island.
  From Charlevoix Sentinal, 100 Years Ago

        “Dale Ave. was named for Dr. Ebenezer Dale, who died in 1834. The physician”s house, on the site of the town whipping post of a less permissive age, was moved to Grove Street.”

        The-Schooner Forrest Belle at Wheelers Wharf, East Gloucester.
 Slade Gorton's building can be seen  in the upper left.
….from "Gloucester Before The Mast" and the Gordon Thomas collection.

        The Colonial Arms Hotel built on Eastern Point.

        Listed as the oldest house in Gloucester in 1904.


“… Congress approved a more realistic breakwater at the entrance to Gloucester Harbor, to extend from the ledge at the Eastern Point Lighthouse about a half mile out over Dog Br toward Round Rock Shoal. It had been proposed as early as 1866. Construction began in 1894, and Dog Bar Breakwater was completed in 1905.” (9)

            1905 Gloucester Money from the Cape Ann National Bank

        First National Bank

         Main Street with Hancock to the left

        Gloucester's High School

        Fishermen's Institute on Duncan St.

        post office on the corner of Main and Pleasant street.

        post office trucks.

       Looking northwest down Smith Cove           in 1905.

        Canvas #151 The End of Rocky Neck and City. Just to the right of the photograph above.            L.A.Dahlmer

        The Surfside Hotel in 1905.

        What is today Beacon Marine Basin.

           "Little Giant" is heading to the East Gloucester ferry dock to unload passengers.  The Railways can be seen at the end of Rocky Neck, middle left, and a schooner heads toward the outer harbor under foresail and head sails.  The far shore above consists of the wharves on the right below, as you look down into the outer harbor.

        Looking into Harbor Cove

        "Volant" at the wharf.

          Tunnel dug under the Annisquam river to carry utilities.

         "ANOTHER DAHLMER BOAT The picture above was sent to me by a friend who works on the "Charlevoix (Mich.)Sentinel". It depicts three Mackinaw (aka Mackinac) boats in the harbor of Twin Rivers, Wisconsin on Lake Michigan in 1905. The reverse is marked that the boat far right was owned by my grandfather, Capt. John A. Dahlmer. I also have a 1905 clipping from the" Beaver Island Beacon" which states, "Johnny Dahlmer arrived in his sailboat yesterday for the Spring Fishing. Note the gillnets and reels on the shore, beyond the three boats. Mackinaw boats were fore and aft rigged with one or two masts and a crew of 3-5 and were used in the Lake gillnet fishery from the early 1800s till replaced by steam power in the 1900s. "    from cousin Bill Hubbard
    Grandfather was 29 at the time.

        "Molly Preparing For A Trip"
                by Edith A. Scott

                     by Wilson H. Irvine

        "Good Harbor Beach"
       by Charles-Abel Corwin 

        "The Artist's Home, Wheeler Point
                        by Eric-Pape 


        "Morning News" by Ellen Day Hale

        Looking southwest, down into Smith Cove from "Banner Hill" at Rocky Neck.

        On the left a photograph from the Cape Ann Museum's archives of the cut bridge in 1905…..on the right…today

        Gate House  and Niles Beach in 1905

        Colonial Arms Motel, Gloucester, Ma.

        Cottages on Bass Rocks

        18’ prototype lifeboat sailed by a crew of four from Norway to Pavillion Beach in three and a half months.


         from the Northshore magazine:
…"In 1906, Slade Gorton & Co., John Pew & Son, David B. Smith & Co., and Reed & Gamage combined to form the Gorton-Pew Fisheries Co. Gloucester was already established as the largest fish producing port in the country and the second largest in the world. The combined company now had a fleet of 39 vessels, the largest fleet of fishing vessels operated by any company on the Atlantic Coast."

         Gorton Pew

        Reed and Gamage yards in 1892.

        East Main St. and the Wonson wharves on Smith cove, Rocky Neck beyond.

          Thacher's Island

        The High School across from
          City Hall on Dale Ave.

        The Post Office and Customs House
 on the corner of Main and Pleasant Streets.

        "Mother" by John French Sloan


        The launch of the schooner "Arethusa, September 25, 1907.

        The dedication of Tablet Rock, Stage Fort Park, August 16, 1907.

        Surfside Hotel on Paviliion Beach

                        Blynman Bridge        1907
                 In Honor of Richard Blynman
            First Minister and Leading  Citizen
                             of Gloucester
          Who in 1643 Dug This Canal Uniting
                               and Bay 

        Plan of Proposed Wharf Extension Gloucester, Mass.
 To accompany petition of A.W.Dodd & Co. to the
 Harbor and Land Commissioners  Aug.19, 1907. 
 A proposed new wharf between Burnham Brothers wharf and Gloucester Gas & Light

        Standing on Main St., in the "West End" looking
         toward City Hall.

        "Shoving Off" by Augustus W. Buhler

        "Gloucester Harbor"
         by Maurice Brazil Prendergast 



1908… “Stacy that year became a park commissioner and started laying the plans which materialized in the esplanade which bears his name.”

He died on December 9, 1928 at 68 years old. (9)

        The houses boardering the harbor side of Western Ave. can be seen on this old zoning map.

          Canvas #119        Western Ave. Before it became Stacey Boulevard
                                 This is still called "Pavillion Beach"     L.A.Dahlmer

        The Surfside Hotel is pictured on the left.

        Italian Fishing Boats hauled out on Pavillion Beach

        Looking out into Smith Cove from the shore along East Main St.

        Further north down Smith Cove looking down on what today is Beacon Marine Basin.

        Looking into Harbor Cove …the "Fort" on the left.

        Dressing fish on the wharf, the City Hall can be seen in the background.

         "Across the Harbor"
        by Arthur Bowen Davies

        "Gloucester" by Wilson Henry Irvine

        "Pier at Gloucester" by Frank Duveneck

        "The Crimson Rambler"
            by Philip Leslie Hale

        "Good Harbor Beach"
           by Childe Hassam

        "Sea Idyll" by Joaquin Sorolla



“....There were thirty-six such “Gloucester Sloop Boats” in the fleet in 1909,
       besides 196 schooners.” (6)

        The black boat, above, with the long bowsprit, is a Gloucester sloop boat.

          photo of the fish tug "John Smith" on a fishing trip out of Charlevoix, Mi., she belonged to my great-grandfather. According to Louis Kimball, the fishermen are left to right-Capt.Jack Dahlmer, Eddie Weiderman and Jack Nolan and the picture was taken off Chicago while hauling the nets.

        Launching the "Margaret D."            Date: Thursday, June 24, 1909

                     Fish Tug Launched

 - The new fish tug which Laird & Sons were building
for Capt. John Dahlmer of Dunkirk was launched this afternoon. She is named
for the owners daughter, Margaret Dahlmer who was sponsor at the launching.
The tug is 70 feet overall, has 15 foot beam and draws seven and one-half feet.
She will carry the engines of the old tug Knapp and is to be put into immediate service in this harbor.

     From Beeson's Marine Directory of the Great Lakes for 1909:
Fishtug John Smith 50'x11" Blt.1876 Axel B. Dahlmer, Dunkirk, NY
Fishtug Geo.E.Fischer 64'x16' Blt.1883 Axel B. Dahlmer, Dunkirk, NY
Fishtug Rough Rider 39'x10' Blt.1904 Manitowoc, Wi A.B.Dahlmer, Dunkirk, NY
Fishtug L.W.Knapp 57'x13' Blt.1895 John A. Dahlmer, Dunkirk, NY

         Axel Dahlmer's "Rough Rider" in Michigan before leaving
         for Gloucester.

         "Starlinc"in Charlevoix, the boat that Peter O.Tysver would bring to Gloucester with the first group of "Michigan Bears".

        Fish on Wharf, Gloucester, Mass.

        A table of "Michigan Bears"after arriving in Gloucester.
 Albert Arnold, Garret Shoares, Oliver(Cy) Tysver and Kale Tysver

        The Hawthrone Inn in East Gloucester.

        Sawyer School on Friend St.

        Leo Tolstoy telling a story to his

        "Gloucester" by John F. Stacey

        Whale's Jaw located in Dogtown

        "The Garden" by Childe Hassam 

        "Harbor Scene, Cape-Ann"
                by Jonas-Lie

        "The Claude Lorraine Glass"
       by Charles Sydney Hopkinson

        "The Pier, Gloucester" by John-F-Stacey

        "Mother and Son" by Cecelia Beaux

        "Breakers at Floodtide"
by Frederick Judd Waugh 


        “The Cut was deepened and an electrically operated draw installed in 1910.” (9)

          Fish drying on the wharves in East Gloucester

         Hulks on Rocky Neck at the edge of Smith Cove