Gloucester Through
                  Time and Art

                              My Paintings       
  Set into the History of  Gloucester, Massachusetts
                        between 1910 to 1925            
                          

                                          

1910

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

          Canvas #12 The Michigan Bears

                                      Gloucester Magazine Vol. lV No.1
Winter 1981
The Michigan Bears
By William D. Hubbard
The fishing method of gill netting originated long ago in Norway but arrived in Gloucester 70 ago by a most roundabout route. In the hazy, humid pre-dawn of August 14, 1910, five small boats slipped out of the harbor at Charlevoix, Michigan, and began a voyage destined to shape the future of every man aboard. The little fleet, not a vessel over 35 feet in length, would sail more than 2,200 miles eastward in the next 24 days. While the men headed out across Lake Michigan, their wives and children left the waterfront and returned to lakeside homes and farms to await the return of their men in the spring.
The acknowledged leader of the expedition was Captain Albert Arnold whose Mindoro led the group. With Arnold aboard Mindora as crewmen were Oliver (Cy) Tysver, Herman Tysver and Gerry (Mike) Shoares. The Hope, Weasel, Prince Olaf and Eagle followed, skippered by Jack Genet, Ed Weiderman, Sam Halberson and John Nordrum. In all, some 20 pioneer fishermen left Charlevoix that day bound for Americ's most famous fishing port, Gloucester, Massachusetts. There, these inlanders would introduce gill netting to the skeptical Yankees.
The men from Michigan were all experienced in Norwegian-born gill netting. Many of their fathers had set these nets in the Skagerrak and North Sea before immigrating to the American Midwest in the early 1800's. Although the U.S, Fish Commision sponsored successful tests of the gill nets in Ipswich Bay in 1880-81, and Gloucesters's own Captain George Martin took the Northern Eagle netting in the winter of '81, the locals remained chary of new ways. It remained for the tough little crew from Michigan to prove that gill netting was a viable fishing method and to write another page of Gloucester's prominent fishing history.
Fishing on the Great Lakes in the seasons just prior to 1910 had gone from bad to worse. Always a tough way to make a living, it became nearly impossible when the whitefish failed to school in their usual locations.
While facing bleak prospects for the coming season, Arnold and the other men learned of the Fish Commission experiment. Bill McInnis, the young Midwestern salesman for Cape Ann Net & Twine Co. who sold them their gear, was popular with and respected by the Lake's fishermen. On several trips to Charlevoix, he urged them to follow up on the Commission's experiment by putting their proved netting methods to work off Gloucester. Also Booth Fisheries Co., a Chicago fish processing firm, had recently opened a plant in Gloucester. They too urged the men to try it. It was either stay at home with little hope of a good catch or gamble their skills in new waters.
The little fleet passed south of St. Ignace and through the Straits of Mackinac late the first day. Good weather held and they sailed south, entering lake St. Clair and the Detroit River and on into Lake Erie. At Buffalo, New York, they entered the barge canal and proceeded east to its juncture with the Hudson River at Troy. From there it was a fast passage downstream to New York City and their first taste of salt spray as they ran out through Hell Gate and into Long Island Sound.
When the little boats left the sheltered waters of the sound at Montauk and entered the North Atlantic, Captain Arnold set a course ENE across Nantucket Sound for the outer cape. (The Cape Cod Canal was under construction but would not open for shipping until 1914.)
On September 27, they rounded Race Point, slipped into the shelter of Provincetown Harbor, and put ashore for the night. Mooring their boats on the edge of the beach, everyone enjoyed a night ashore only 20 miles from Gloucester. But rising the next morning in anticipation of a quick passage to Cape Ann, those Michigan lads has quite a surprise, the five little vessels they had moored at bayside last night were now over 100 feet from the nearest drop of water! It took a little thought and the endurance of some good-natured ribbing from the Provincetown folks before they realized they had just experienced the effects of the ocean tides.
On arrival at Gloucester next day, they lost no time in rigging their gear and preparing the nets for the winter's fishing. Each gill net was 50 fathoms long by two fathoms deep, a fathom measuring six feet. Nets were made of flax twine and had six-inch mesh openings, or six-inch "mash" in local parlance. Fifty round glass floats buoyed up the top edge and as many bricks held down the bottom of the net. Three nets were strung together to form a "gang". The end of each "gang" was moored by a 14-pound trawl anchor, and a flag buoy marked each end on the ocean's surface.
The "mash" opening was designed to allow a fish to swim only part way through before being stuck. On attempting to back out of the opening, its gills became caught in the twine, providing the name "gill net". Six-inch "mash" was latter increased to eight when the cod and Pollack of Ipswich Bay proved to be larger than the fish of the Great Lakes. Regulating the openings allows for smaller fish to swim through and escape and while the while the larger fish are caught.
Albert Arnold cleared $12 a week in the Mindoro in the winter of 1910-11, an average figure for the five boats. By spring, the new venture was deemed a success and the men headed back to Michigan to pack up and move families and households to Gloucester before the next season.
Despite the Gloucestermen's misgivings about the effects of undertow and tides, the inland fishermen had proven that gill netting would work. Soon, local captains put their trawl tubs and jigs ashore and rigged up with the floats, gangs and leads of the gill netter. Many a struggling fisherman on Lake Superior and Lake Michigan heard of the success of the men from Charlevoix and headed east that summer. With boats and families, they left their homes in Charlevoix, Bear Island, Mackinaw, St. James and Manistee and headed for Cape Ann. The Lasleys and Joneses ad Places were joined by Dahlmers, Lafonds and more Tysvers, all bound for Gloucester and a new future. Most settled on Rocky Neck and in East Gloucester near the bustling piers and wharves of the inner harbor.

           Canvas #6  by L.A.Dahlmer  What would become Bicford Way, and what
                               had been an old fish house on Wonson Cove.

        Canvas #34 "Ibsen in Gloucester Harbor"  by L.A.Dahlmer

        The Ibsen in Gloucester harbor. Another of the Michigan Bears, the Ibsen's fine
 lines , and weatherly cabin arrangement, allowed the men to day fish, the small horsepower early engine easily driving the hull to make the run to the grounds and back, no longer solely relying on the breeze.

           Axel B.Dahlmer's "Rough Rider" before leaving for Gloucester
             with the rest of the "Michigan Bears".

        from Bill Hubbard...
Ed Weiderman was a"Michigan Bear", and captain of the Dahlmer vessel, "Rough Rider", which went from the Great Lakes to Gloucester in 1911. His Father was Edward J. Weiderman who brought the vessel "Weasel" to Gloucester that same year.

            Canvas #4   "Margaret D. in Smith Cove"  by L.A.Dahlmer

 John Dahlmer brought the newly-launched Margaret D. to Gloucester in 1910. He, brother Lawrence and son Ronald sailed her down the St. Lawrence around Nova Scotia and down the coast due to her draft.

           1910 Schooner Races

          Drying fish in East Gloucester

        Canvas #120           Schooner at the Wharf

         p.82
 For 50 years these two wharves were the headquarters of the John F. Wonson Company, which sent a fleet of 20 schooners as far as the fish held out, from the Delaware Capes to Greenland.   (14)   In the 1970's the long low building on the left would house my boatshop.
 (1863)…"John Fletcher Wonson, a prominent citizen, died October 21, aged 65 years. He made the first halibut trip to Georges in 1830."  (13)

        Looking down Main St. into the "West End".  Gray's Hardware store would be first building on the left.

         From the BirdsEye Presentation - 11/21/09 - Presentation by Greg Gibson


Down the block from Blackburn's saloon a young man named Frank E. Davis is busy having a very progressive, modern idea. Thanks to upgraded railroad and postal services, America now has the infrastructure to sell goods anywhere in the country by mail. And because of constantly improving packaging and preservation methods, fisheries products can withstand bulk handling and lengthy shelf time. Davis puts these two technologies together and creates Gloucester's first mail order fish company. By 1910 it has become so successful that he needs a new factory to contain it. So Davis utilizes another cutting-edge technology – a newfangled construction method called reinforced concrete – to create the Frank E. Davis factory on Rogers St. Davis' big thinking and innovative use of technology pay off. By 1915 his company is the largest such in the world. It employs 100 workers and boasts 200,000 customers.

        The Customs House, on the corner of Main and Plesant St., with the Brown building behind.

        Lookng down on Rocky Neck at was is now the Studio, bordering Smith Cove on the left, Tarr & Wonson's buildings, the Rudder, and Mad Fish.  The northern end of the fort and the entrance to Harbor Cove in the background on the right.

         Above and right, at one point Booth Fisheries later Robinson's yard and after WWII Beacon Marine.

        Salted cod drying in the sun.

        "Fishermans Wharf" by  Kathryn Bard Cherry

        "Gloucester Harbor" by Maarten Platje

        "Happy Blowing Bubbles"
  by Charles Sydney Hopkinson

        "Bathers Along the Shore"
        by Louise Upton Brumback 

        In the picture above the police station stands on the corner of Duncan and Roger streets.  Postcard shown on the right is of the Fishermen's Institute on Duncan St, next door.

  1911

                           INCREASE IN GILL NETTING FLEET

              Now a Firmly Established Branch of the Shore Fishery

          Seventeen Crafts Will Pursue the Industry Here This Season

            Gloucester Daily Times                        November 23, 1911

   Within a few days the fleet of Gill netting fishing crafts, with headquarters at this port, will number 17 sail. The business was begun here in the summer of 1910 with but a few, was increased later by the addition of several from the Great Lakes and again, increased this season by several more from that locality and along the New England Coast.
   Last season was a profitable one for those engaged in this method of fishing and has now become firmly established in the prosecution of the shore fishery. Crafts going out in the morning and returning at night with there fares of right alive fish which are generally ships to Boston and sometimes landed (there).
   The building up of this business has brought to this city many families and also brought into active use several pieces of wharf property which have lain idle for some time. The fleet gives employment to many workmen.
    Besides the men engaged on the fishing crafts, all of which are steamers or gasoline(driven), other men are engaged all the time on shore, overhauling and repairing the net's and getting them ready for the next day's fishing, and men are also required in the taking in and shipping plants to help unload the fares and ship the fish.
   The shipments each day are considerable which means the teaming and freighting and with so large a fleet of powered craft, there is always repair and alteration work to be done so take it all in all this gillnetting fleet at the present time is quite an asset in the fishing and business community.
   These boats require quite large open wharf space on which can be erected the big reels over which the nets are reeled every day and overhauled and also a shed for storing appurtenances.

                     Unused Wharf Property Benefits by Their Appearance

At the Leighton wharf on Wharf Street, six of these craft, the Prince Olaf, Weasel, Mindoro, Naomi Bruce, Ibsen, and Alice make their headquarters, while at the John J. Stanwood wharf on Commercial Street, the Rough Rider, Eagle and Margaret D. are located. At the Lantz wharf on Duncan Street are the Quoddy, Nomad and Enterprise. The Quality is now in commission and the Nomad is expected today from Stonington, Conn. and the Enterprise and the other one are expected here from the same locality with in a week.
   At the Lantz wharf are also the plants of John W. Atwood and Capt. Geo. E. Allison who ship the fish for most of the fleet.
   Across the dock on the westerly side of the wharf of the American Halibut Company, the Boston Shipping Company is to have a shipping shed space for it's two steamers, Pethulia, and Geisha which are now to go gillnetting, the former arriving here to start in yesterday.
    The steamer Willard of Portland is also to be one of the fleet and will have reel space and building on the Charles Parkhurst wharf and Capt. Patrick Murphy of this port, who recently bought a steamer at New York, which he is fitting out for the business, is to have his reels and a shed on the land of the Boston & Gloucester Steamboat Company off Pearce Street.
   Capt. Atwood has thus far had a busy season in shipping the catches of many of the fleet now going. Capt. Allison arrives here last night from Stonington and will have things ready for business when the Nomad arrives.

          May 27, 1911 Percy Wheeler bought Sawyers Wharf.   GDT

        Looking out into the Atlantic from Good Harbor beach by Augustus W. Buhler

        "Good Harbor Beach" by Leon Kroll

        Harbor Cove…...from schooners
                                 to draggers

   1912

        On October 5, 1912 John A. and Annie Dahlmer bought the premises stated as parcel one in a deed given by Dorcas S. Foster. It would be the family homestead for the next ten years. My father, born in 1915, would live there until he started school, and the family moved across town to Hovey St., top of the hill, overlooking Gloucester's outer harbor.

        Canvas #14          Mid-Tide Smith Cove, Rocky Neck

        Parcel one, was bordered on the left, by what is now "Bickford Way" 
{see Canvas #14}, on the right by Freemont St., with the horse-drawn wagon,
and fronted by Rocky Neck Ave.. It also included the cottage on the shore, 17 Rocky Neck Ave. the former gallery of Edward Beaulier.

        Canvas #16                  17 Rocky Neck Ave.

        This is the class picture of the one room school house on Rocky Neck, around 1912

               (1) My Uncle Eber    (2) Uncle Ronald    (3) Aunt Margaret     (4) Aunt Laura
                                     and (5) my Aunt Mary  .. all Dahlmer's.

         Skating on Smith's Cove.

         Canvas #26       Grandfather in the Wheelhouse of the "Margaret D."
                                       A nice summer's day and a deck load of fish

        Canvas #23     Anticipation of the Catch aboard the "Margaret D."

        From the Gloucester Daily Times

                                           Today's Arrivals and Receipts


The arrivals and receipts in detail are:

Sch. Marsala, Georges handlining, 22,000 lbs. salt cod, 1800 lbs. halibut
Sch. Yakima, via. Portland, 10,000 lbs fresh fish, 10,000 lbs. salt fish.
*Str. Ibsen, gill netting, 2000 lbs. fresh fish.
*Str. Alice, gill netting, 1000 lbs. fresh fish
*Str. Naomi Bruce, gill netting, 2000 lbs. fresh fish.
*Str. Mindora, gill netting, 1400 lbs. fresh fish.
*Str. Rough Rider, gill netting, 2500 lbs. fresh fsh.
*Str. Margaret D., gill netting, 4500 lbs. fresh fish.
*Str. Prince Olaf, gill netting, 1500 lbs. fresh fish.
*Str. Enterprise, gill netting, 2000 lbs. fresh fish.
*Str. Venture, gill netting, 1000 lbs. fresh fish.
*Str. Hope, gill netting, 1300 lbs. fresh fish.
Str. Geisha, gill netting, 10,000 lbs. fresh fish.
*Str. Roamer, gill netting, 400 lbs. fresh fish.
Sch. Pauline, Georges, handlining, 20,000 lbs. salt cod, 5000 lbs. fresh halibut.
Sch. Belbina P. Domingoes, via. Boston, 40,000 lbs. fresh fish.
Sch. Mary E. Sylveria, via. Boston

* All "Michigan Bears"

                                                                      August 24, 1912

Capt. John A. McKinnon and his crew have killed the sea serpent, according to the Portland Argus. It was 60 feet long and had a big fin like a leg of mutton sail, put up a desperate fight, exhausting the crew,and - oh, well, here's what the Argus says:

"The sea serpent, which has been a frequent visitor to our coast for the past 20 summers, and an object of dread to all fishermen, will be seen no more having been killed on Sunday last off Cape porpoise by the crew of the Boston fishing steamer
Philomena, once the George F. West steam yacht of the same name, after a desperate combat, lasting nearly two hours.
"Capt. John A. McKinnon, the master of the Philomena, one of the best known mackerel killers on the coast, was a busy man yesterday afternoon taking out a fair of mackerel at commercial wharf which he had just secured off the lightship, but delayed his departure from the dark long enough to give a brief account of the affair, which occurred on Sunday fore noon.
"A small school of mackerel in the seine boat were pulling in the seine when a commotion was noticed among the fish, and the serpent, which had evidently been under the seine, made its appearance alongside the boat to the alarm and disgust of the crew, who had never seen anything resembling it before. In some way it became entangled in the seine, tearing it to pieces, and then started off at a 2.40 gait, with the boat, seine and everything in tow, all the mackerel estimated at about 40 barrels, getting away.
"At last one of the Philomena's Men armed with a knife a foot long reached a vital spot, and after a great splashing the serpent succumbed. Capt. McKinnon describes the sea monster as being from 50 to 60 feet in length, it's body, which resembled in size and shape an immense tree trunk being black with a rough skin coveted with barnacles.
It had what the fishermen call a hammer head and an immense fin on the back resembling a leg of mutton sail and nearly as large.
The skipper was afterwards sorry that he did not tow the serpent into port, but with a badly exhausted crew and a wrecked seine he concluded it best to cut him adrift. Called "Big Ben ." by the fishermen , and dreaded by them so much that they invariably pulled up stakes when he put in an appearance, he has been seen every summer along the coast for many years, although its existence has been doubted by many. On one occasion it ventured into this harbor, and was seen by many at the islands. the defunct serpent has been the theme of countless jokes in times gone by, and has been celebrated in poetry and prose."

         Canvas #144   Grandfather John A.'s  "Margaret D." and the schooner "Judith" tied up off Commercial St. at the John J. Stanwood wharf.
 

         Margaret D. rafted up across town.

        Skating in Cripple Cove.

         Archie Fenton buys the property that he has been renting at 273 East Main St., East Gloucester.  He had built the "Great Republic" for Howard Blackburn here back in 1900.

          Bass Rocks…"The Back Shore"

        "Italian Quarter, Gloucester"             Gloucester's Back Shore
                                                by Edward Hopper

        "Good Harbor Beach"
     by Abraham Leon Kroll

        " Good Harbor Beach" by Leon Kroll

        Margaret D.'s seine boat on the wharf in East Gloucester

   1913

        Petition to Harbor & Land Commission for construction of breakwater between the mainland and Ten Pound Island. (18) 


   March 13, 1913
  (Thursday) Margaret D.   Landed 1000lbs of fish

 March 15 (Sat)
 Margaret D.  Landed 1000 lbs fresh fish
A few of the gill netters ventured outside yesterday during the thick fog and picked up their nets, the receipts of the day being small however, about 15,000 pounds in all being landed. the fleet of mackeral boats that went out night before last have not returned and have probably harbored to the eastward and will be in for Monday’s market.

March 17, Margaret D. lands 1000lbs of fish.


 --GDT Friday March 21, 1913

Str. Margaret D. STRUCK A LEDGE

Crew safe on Milk Island This Morning - Full of Water - May Be Total Loss - Fog Caused Mishap

While proceeding outside this morning for a day’s fishing, the gill netting steamer Margaret D., Capt. John Dahlmar, went ashore on the dangerous ledges on the south west side of Milk Island during the thick fog about 6 o’clock this morning and it is feared that the steamer will be a total loss.

With several others of the larger type of gill netting steamers the Margaret D. has been fishing off Thatcher’s Island and was headed in that direction when she struck on the rocks. The loud blowing of her whistle attracted the attention of C.K. Whittier, one of the Gap Head Life Saving patrol who was on duty at the time and he hurried back to the station and the crew of the station went to the aid of the stranded craft.
The place where she lay is a dangerous one and in a short time, her hull was full of water.
Help was summoned from this city and the tug Nellie and lighter Phillip went down, but were unable to do anything.
It is feared that the Margaret D. will be a total loss. The crew reached land in safety and are remaining by to save what they can. At low tide the tug and lighter will again go down to take off her nets, gear and such things as can be saved and moved.



HOPE TO SAVE HULL Saturday March 22,1913


March 22, 1913 Gloucester Daily Times

Hope was To Save Hull Of Str. Margaret D.

The Gill netting steamer Margaret D., which went ashore on the southwestern side of Milk Island yesterday morning during a thick fog, is badly damaged and will probably be a total loss. At low water the little steamer is high and dry among the rocks, with two large holes in her bottom, and with the wind blowing from the present quarter, it would take but a short time before she would go to pieces.

Yesterday afternoon one of the Dahlmer fleet of Gill netters visited the scene and the crews of the craft, together wrecked steamer assisted by Capt. Bearse's crew of the Gap Head life saving Station, worked the entire afternoon removing what movable gear they could on the island above high water mark.

Another visit will be made to the wreck today in order to save as much as possible, Capt. Dahlmer hopes to be able to remove her boiler and engines as well.

Should the wind haul around to the northwest it is possible that something may be done to save the hull, although the craft was badly chewed up yesterday from the heavy pounding on the rocks and all four blades of her propeller smashed.

The Margaret D. was built in Ashtabulla, Ohio, in 1899, and came from the Great Lakes two years ago to engage in gill netting. She was 32 tons and valued at about $4000, with no insurance, it is understood. Capt. Dahlmer was her owner and she was operated in connection with steamers Gertrude T. and George E. Fisher, which are owned in the family.

    
            GDT
MONDAY MARCH 24, 1913

GIVE UP HOPE OF SAVING THE HULL

All hopes of saving the hull of the gill-netting steamer Margaret D. which went ashore on Milk Island last Friday morning during a fog, have been abandoned and the craft will be a total loss. And effort will be made, however to save her boilers and engine as soon as weather conditions will permit.

At low tide yesterday, a gang of about 20 men worked on the steamer while the tide was out and succeeded in wrighting her. The craft was back so as to get at her bottom with a view of patching up her holes with canvas, but darkness stopped further operations. Some of the men were set ashore on the main land while others remained on the island to look after the wreck at high water. When the wind shifted again to the south some fears were entertained of a rough sea, but later the wind petered out and the sea remained calm.

This morning, Capt. John Dahlmar and two dory loads of men came from the island and reported that the craft had been listed badly during the night by the heavy sea which stove a number of large holes in her bottom, making it useless to make any further attempts to save the hull.

The Margaret D. Was built 3 1/2 years ago and cost $10,000, Capt. Dahlmar says. There was no insurance on the craft.

Two of the crew who were at work on the craft were cared for by Capt. Bearse at the Gap Head Life Saving Station last night. There is no shelter on Milk Island.

        Portrait of Eliza Gentry Young
    by Harriet Addams (Young) Brown

        "Eastern Point " by Abbott Fuller Graves

   1914

        Mayor authorized to have working plans made for Tuberculosis Hospital. (18)

 

        My great aunt May on the deck of "Rough Rider" pictured below at dock.

        Bill Hubbard:
    This is the Higgins & Gifford boat yard in Gloucester as it appeared in 1912 and, yes, that Is the Rough Rider docked beyond the seine boats. The company produced more seine boats than any other yard on the coast; turning out over 1,000 one year. The built them to order, up to 30 feet long. The yard was located where the east end of the State Fish Pier is now. The yard was gone then but, I remember the field on the hill in back of the yard was packed with old seine boats about the time Mooter's pakage store opened on East Main Street at the traffic lights.

        ""Our Lady of Good Voyage, 1924." The church of the Portugese community was dedicated in 1893. Our Lady of Good Voyage church on Prospect Street was rebuilt after a fire in 1914. (below) In this photo, the carillon bells are only a few years old"….Fred Bodin

        The original statue from Our Lady of Good Voyage church can be seen in the Cape Ann Museum.

        Gloucester Electric Company Office on Main St.

        Looking west down Middle St. at intersection with Dale Ave.

         The Surfside Hotel formerly the Pavillion would burn down in 1914.  In the photograph, above right, the houses on Western Ave. can be seen, these would be torn down/moved when Stacey started the "Boulevard" project in 1923.  The Tavern would later be built on the site of the Surfside.

        "Gloucester" by Alice Beach Winter

        "Rocky Neck" by Alice Beach Winter

        "Red Warehouses at Gloucester
             by John French Sloan

        "Harbor Scene" by Stuart Davis

   1915

         Our  Lady of Good Voyage Church rebuilt….(18)

       The flake yard at the beginning of the Fort at the end of Harbor Cove.

       It is 1915 and your looking down at the west end of the city, harbor cove, the "Fort", the Paint Factory to the left at the end of Rocky Neck, Ten Pound Island, and the breakwater with the Atlantic Ocean beyond.

            Gloucester's Ferry

         "Street at Gloucester", 1915 by Agnes Millen Richmond 
 Looking down the causeway on Rocky Neck towards the intersection with East Main St..

         "Gloucester Scene"
    by George William Sotter

        "A Breezy Day, Gloucester
              by John Sloan

        "Gloucester Girl"
 by Agnes Millen Richmond

        "The Coal Slip, Gloucester"
            by Kathryn Cherry 

   1916

        Schooner “Tattler” set all time dory fishing record when she hailed in with 500,000 lbs. of salt cod. (18)

 “Close to half the taxes of City were paid by summer people” (18)

“ “Studio or Gallery on the Moors” built in East Gloucester” (18)

        East Gloucester in the background, entrance to Smith Cove

        Life Saving Station at Dolliver's Neck
        in Fresh Water Cove.

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

        Life Saving Crew at Drill, Dolliver's Neck

        "Bathers" by Maurice-Prendergast

        "Helen Taylor Sketching"
           by John French Sloan

        "Evening, Rocky Neck" by John French Sloan

        "Backyards, Gloucester"
             by Stuart Davis 

        "Fishing Port-Gloucester"
        by John French Sloan 

        "Spinning Yarns, Gloucester"
             byAugustus W. Buhler 

         "Gloucester Hillside" by John
             Fulton Folinsbee

     1917

         p.xxxxiv"The sociable recluse of Ravenswood Park, Mason A. Walton, built a cabin in the woods and had a reputation as a naturalist and writer. He is remembered for "A Hermit's Wild Friends, published in 1903. Walton's search for a return of his health in the forest was rewarded: he died in 1917 at the age of seventy-nine." (9)

         In The Cabin Near This Spot
                 Mason A. Walton
          "Hermit Of Gloucester"
                 Lover of Nature
        Lived For Thirty-Three Years
 

        Trolley car business went bankrupt.   (18)
 
 Cruel winter, Harbor frozen to breakwater, Cut shut down for six weeks. (18) GDT Jan.17, 1981

The Tavern built on Windmill Hill, site of former Surfside Hotel. (18)

 1917 or 1918...  1st class of racing sailboats designed & built on Cape Ann by Nicholis Montgomery and Harry L. Friend
  (18),     GDT Oct 28, 1991

        "Beach Scene Gloucester"
               by Alice Schille

        "Gloucester Trolley" by John-Sloan

        "Main street Gloucester" by John Sloan

        "Girl Seated Chin on Hand, Gloucester" by John French Sloan

        "Main St., Gloucester" byAlice Schille.  In the west end looking up Main St with City Hall in the distance.

        "Good Harbor Beach" by Eben

        "Passing Through Gloucester
             by John French Sloan 

        Today on East Main St.

        "Our Red Cottage Lilacs"
            by John French Sloan

       

   1918

        “Order to take Eastern Point land due to barriers, etc on Shore Drive.” (18)

        Rocky Neck in winter, Smith Cove iced over, by Lester G. Hornsby 

        Heading out of the inner harbor with Ten Pound ahead

        "Gloucester" by William Glackens

        "The Church at Gloucester"
           byChilde-Hassam

        "Gloucester" by Pauline Williams

        "Gloucester Harbor" by Hayley R.Lever

        "Boat Landing in Gloucester"
          by William James Glackens 

        "Gloucester" by William Glackens

   1919

        
Gloucester, March 28 ….“ The gill net steamer Orion, Capt. John Dahlmer, lying at Rocky Neck, was damaged $2000, by fire at 9:30 Tuesday night. No one was on board the steamer at the time.

The fire started in the engine room, and the amidship section was gutted. The fireman had bank the fires and gone on shore very early in the evening.
The boat is a converted yacht, 100 feet long, and has been engaged for some time in the fishing business.

        Page 82
Next to the railways was Rocky Neck's cultural landmark for 32 years, the Gloucester School of the Theater - the beloved " Little Theater" - made over from Tarr's paint shop into New England's summer drama shrine from 1919 to 1950.       (14)

         Gloucester's outer harbor frozen over, Ten Pound Island in the upper left corner, Eastern Point beyond.

        "Filmed in Gloucester in 1919 and now lost." …Bing McGilvray

        "The Breakfast Party"
     by Charles Courtney Curran

        "Gloucester Harbor" by Stuart Davis

        "Eastern Point"
 by William James Glackens 

        "The Pretty Pool, Bass Rocks"
                 by Childe-Hassam 

,

  1920

        By George R. Sibley, son of William, grandson of George W. ...

 Grampy ( George W. Sibley) came to the United States in the 1890's as a teenager (born in 1877). First to Ludlow, Me., later to Gloucester. In the 1910's he and his wife (marries Granny in 1915 or so) came to Gloucester, built a house on Dodge St., still standing, at it's corner with Sibley St. , named for him. By this time they had a son, Charles William, born in 1919 in N.Y. city. In 1922 they bought property on Rocky Neck, and Grampy commuted back and forth to work, and the place by skiff. Eventually they sold Dodge St. and moved to 22 Rocky Neck, probably early 1930's Grampy worked at Rocky Neck Marine Railways until he retired in the early 1940's. Dad had various boats as a teenager which he kept at a float at 17 Rocky Neck. There was also a larger, cut down sailboat which the family used, kept on a mooring in the cove, I'd imagine. (there's a picture, framed, on my wall of a gang out on her in the 1930's.) Dad greatly enjoyed fishing, often with his chums; Ken McCurdy, Jackie Wonson, Jack Wisutskie, and others. He went off to the war in 1942, maybe '43, and after he came back bought a 1931 Maine dragger, the Nancy J., from a fellow in Vinalhaven in 1946 and rebuilt her on his railways throughout 1947 and 1948.
Grampa was a great help. They had had a railways of sorts in the 1930's, but did it up properly, after the war.

         Canvas #16      "17 Rocky Neck Ave."  by L.A.Dahlmer

                             The cottage before the railways was added.

        In pursuit of the real McCoy by Bill Hamlin

They flew many flags and were from many seas-tramps, one-time luxury yachts, steam trawlers, old gun boats, and large and small schooners. All were attracted to the limits of American territorial waters by the easy money to be made from catering to the great thirst for liquor after the National Prohibition Act went into effect on January 17, 1920.
Known as "Rum Row" , these vessels anchored safely outside the 3 mile limit from the population centers along the Atlantic seaboard and, to a lesser extent along the Pacific Coast. Daily quotes on case lots of liquor were chalked on blackboards and hung in the rigging for customers to see as business went on around the clock. Contact boats of every description came out to the "rum ships" from shore, took on their cargoes and returned to shore where they were unloaded.
While most smuggled liquor was either cut or impure, Bill McCoy sold high quality brand- name liquor. This fact plus his reputation for square dealing earned him the nickname
"the real McCoy", an expression in use ever since.   (21)

        The Booth Fisheries wharves on East Main Street.
 

         East Gloucester in the foreground, Five Pound Island in the inner harbor with the city beyond.

        Standing below the Eastern Point Lighthouse with Gloucester's breakwater extending out protecting the harbor from the Atlantic Ocean.

        "Autumn Gloucester" by Hayley Lever 
 Standing on Clarendon St., Rocky Neck, with the city beyond the inner harbor and a schooner heading out.

        "The Artists Wife, Bessie Wessel"
         by Herman Henry Wessel

        "Moonlight Over Smiths Cove"
          by Richard Hayley Lever

        "Gloucester Harbor" by Jane Peterson

        "Washing Day, Down by the Sea, Gloucester by Sidney Miller Wiggins

   1921

          Canvas #20    "The Colonial Inn, East Gloucester"  by L.A.Dahlmer
The original homstead of the Patch family at the top of Patch's hill.

                                     Gloucester Daily Times

ROUGH TRIP OF OVER 2000 MILES

“All fears and anxiety which have been entertained for the safety of the little steamer George E. Fisher of Dunkirk, N.Y., which left Lake Erie several weeks ago for this port, to join the local fleet of gill netters, were set at rest this morning, when the craft arrived in port safe and sound, after a rough, hard passage of 2000 miles.
    The steamer which is about the size of the steamer Margaret D., is in command of Capt. Lawrence Dahlmer, brother of Capt. John Dahlmer of the Margaret D..  The young navigator is but 21 years old, but he has lots of nerve and sailed his craft to her destination.
    On account of the draught of his craft, Capt. Dahlmer was unable to come through the Erie locks, thereby necessitating his taking the river and Gulf of St. Lawrence to the Atlantic ocean, and down the Cape Shore and across the Bay of Fundy.
   When the steamer left the lakes, she had a crew of three men, besides the engineer, but on reaching Gaspee, Quebec County, the crew left and Capt. Dahlmer was necessarily delayed until he secured a crew which were sent from here.  The little boat reached the Atlantic ocean and continued along the coast, arriving at Yarmouth, N.S., where she put in about a week ago.
   It was supposed that Capt. Dahlmer would proceed directly here, but he remained in Yarmouth several days. His delay in reaching here, naturally caused much anxiety, friends of the skipper and crew not knowing that the boat had not started. When she put in here this morning, their anxiety was quickly turned into joy.
   The steamer is owned by Mrs. A.B. Dahlmer of East Gloucester, and will fit out for gill netting right away.

         from Wikipedia....
Prohibition in the United States was a national ban on the sale, manufacture, and transportation of alcohol, in place from 1920 to 1933.[1] The dry movement was led by rural Protestants in both political parties, and was coordinated by the Anti-Saloon League. The ban was mandated by the Eighteenth Amendment to the Constitution, and the Volstead Act set down the rules for enforcing the ban and defined the types of alcoholic beverages that were prohibited. Private ownership and consumption of alcohol was not made illegal. Prohibition ended with the ratification of the Twenty-first Amendment, which repealed the Eighteenth Amendment, on December 5, 1933.

The introduction of alcohol prohibition and its subsequent enforcement in law was a hotly debated issue. The contemporary prohibitionists presented it as a victory for public morals and health, but once the laws were passed they did little to help enforce them. The consumption of alcohol overall went down by half in the 1920's; and it remained below pre-Prohibition levels until the 1940's.[2]

Anti-prohibitionists ("wets") criticized the alcohol ban as an intrusion of mainly rural Protestant ideals on a central aspect of urban, immigrant and Catholic everyday life. Effective enforcement of the alcohol ban during the Prohibition Era proved to be very difficult and led to widespread flouting of the law. The lack of a solid popular consensus for the ban resulted in the growth of vast criminal organizations, including the modern American Mafia, and various other criminal cliques. Widespread disregard of the law also generated rampant corruption among politicians and within police forces.

        

       Captain McCoy was familiar figure along the Florida coast, having operated a motor boat services and a boat yard out of Jacksonville for many years before Prohibition began. The sea was and is blood. His father had, ironically, then in the Union Navy during the Civil War, serving on the blockade of Southern coasts.

By 1921 McCoy had gained a reputation as a skilled yacht builder, having constructed vessels for the likes of Andrew Carnegie, and for all- around dependability and honesty in his dealings. He was also, according to his own memoirs, a teetotaler.

After being approached by an obviously prosperous, though not far above the law boat -owner to skipper a load of liquor from the Bahamas at a handsome daily fee. McCoy began to see the financial possibilities available to skilled sailors in the Prohibition economy. Accordingly, he determined to go with the very best and entrained to Gloucester, Massachusetts to acquire one of the legendary and fast fishing schooners for his planned circumnavigation of the 18th amendment.

        Henry L. Marshall was available for an investment of $20,000. She was a handsome Gloucester fisherman with knock- about rig and twin auxiliary engines for emergencies. She was able to carry 3000 cases of liquor, re-packed into burlap sacks or "burlaps" for ease of storage. She was 90 feet long and built of white oak. She was also all he could afford at the time.

But this was not the case for a long . Even before McCoy came to anchor in Nassau on her first voyage, a speedboat brought and entrepreneur with an offer, 1500 cases to Savannah at $10 per case. In less than two weeks McCoy had nearly recouped his vessel's purchase price.

Amazed at the ease with which this astonishing sum was made, McCoy soon had a tidy sum and a growing circle of contacts, both in Nassau and in New York. In the latter, a member of a gangster- syndicate approached him with a lucrative offer. He wanted to know if he could "import" 5000 cases at a crack.

The skipper lost no time in returning to Gloucester, this time to purchase the Arethusa, a vessel he considered the finest of the Gloucester built fishing schooners. Her owners were bankrupt and she was for sale. McCoy got her for $21,000 although she had been appraised at twice that. He paid cash.

McCoy claimed to be the originator of Rum Row: that line of floating bars and liquor "whole sellers" seen off major market cities in the early days of Prohibition just outside the 3 mile limit and therefore a mocking offense to the "drys". The rows would persist until international law was bent to scatter the fleet beyond 12 miles from shore.

         Grandfather moved his growing family to 9 Hovey St., top of the hill
overlooking the outer harbor.

          Gloucester August 7- a delegation of fishing vessel captains left tonight for Washington to confer tomorrow with George N. Peck, the agricultural adjustment act administrator, on proposals to limit mackerel catches and fix prices for the fish. The fishermen and their associates have agreed tentatively on a program which would limit the catch of each vessel to 24,000 pounds, and fix prices of three and two cents a pound for the mackerel.
Those in the delegation are Captains John A. Dahlmer, Franc Favalora, Joseph Palazolla, Henry F. Brown and William J. MacInnis, former mayor.

        from Northshore Magazine
…....the Gorton's fisherman is based on a painting by artist A.W. Bueller, acquired by Gorton's in the early 1900s. The painting sits today in the president's office. In the 1920s, when the Gloucester community wanted to build a memorial to the fishermen who died at sea, they selected the same imagery."


 “First fish class catboat built at Montgomery Boat Yard” (18)

         This is a painting of a fishboat by David Montgomery, grandson of "Nick" Montgomery who built the first.  Nick built the prototype, filled it full of cement, let it cure, and dismantled it.  He then had a mold and templates to begin mass producing this class.  My first boat was a fish boat that I co-owned with my friend Al Viator.

        The Sibley's had purchased the property
 on Rocky Neck from my grandfather in 1917.
 Henrietta Sibley sitting and reading the paper, and above a check she had written to
 my grandfather, just found by her granddaughter 94 years later.

         The Canadian's "Bluenose" in the Fishermen's Races off Gloucester.

         Hoisting Joan of Arc

        "Portrait of Anna Hyatt Huntington" by Marion Boyd Allen.  Later in life, below.

        "Gloucester Harbor" by Julius Delbos

        "View of Gloucester" by Abram Molarsky

        The launching of the schooner "Arethusa" in Essex, Ma.

         Bill McCoy on board "Tomoka"    firing his machine gun.

        "Arethusa", the first knockabout schooner built by James & Tarr, was launched at Essex in September, 1907 and remained the largest and fastest knockabout until the "Catherine" was built in 1915.

   1922

         "Where proposed Sea Wall is to be built Western Ave.  Nov.21, 1922"

        Decking in a schooner at Bishop's Yard in Vincent Cove.
 In the background the sign of the "Gloucester Electric Company"

         "Boats at Dock" by Albert Gruppe
 Looking out into Smith Cove from Rocky Neck.

        "Gloucester Harbor"
     by Harry Aiken Vincent 

        "Woman With Flowers"
             by Gertrude-Fiske 

   

         “North Shore Arts Association established.” (18)

        “W.Starling Burgess designed THE PURITAN, maybe the finest and fastest “Gloucesterman” ever built.” (18)

        Puritan heading into Cripple Cove.

        “First modern carillon in America installed in Our Lady of Good Voyage Church” (18)     The bells can be seen in the right hand tower.

         John D.Rockefeller Jr. visits Gloucester.

        "On The Road To Rocky Neck"
     by William Henry Dethlef Koerner

   1923

        “Stacy Esplanade construction began” (18)

“Eastern Point road proposed as public way.” (18)

“City took Ledgemere (behind Portuguese church) for public park.” (18)

        Canvas #119 "Pavillion Beach and Western Ave."  by L.A.Dahlmer
 The houses on the southern side of Western Ave. would be torn down or relocated for the new boulevard, "Stacy Esplanade".

        In 1915-16 Johnnie Morgan opened this store on Western Ave. It was later removed, along with all other buildings on the harbor side of the street, for the establishment of Stacy Boulevard (aka Stacy Esplanade).

         72 Western Ave. The last house standing.

         Many of these houses were moved to new locations all over Gloucester.

        The houses that were removed to construct the Stacy Esplanade can be seen on the left in the photograph above.

        Stacey Esplanade finished.

         The "new" Tavern…replacing the Pavillion Hotel.

        "Columbia" wins over "HenryFord" and the
           "Howard" during the schooner races.

        Above left Gardner Wonson house late 1800's, right today.

        "Gloucester Victorian"
            by Edward Hopper

        "The Yellow House"
          by Edward Hopper

        "Portrait of a Woman" by Agnes M. Richmond

   1924

        “First quick-freeze industry formed by Clarence Birdseye” (18)

“The MAINE, built in Essex 1845, last surviving pinky, dismantled” (18)

“Permission asked to run sluiceway under Rocky Neck” (18)

        Carnival at Stage Fort Park.

        "New England Homstead"
         by Theresa Bernstein

        "The Cape Ann  Shore"
         by Henry Hugh Breckenridge

         Self Portrait by Cecilia-Beaux

    1925

         Pete Tysver aboard the Anna T.

        Capt. Pete Tysver on the deck of the "Anna T."

          Finally, it was on July11, 1925, when the gill-netter Anna T was stranded on the rocks at the mouth of the Annisquam River in Gloucester. Captain Albert Arnold and his partner Philip Beaudine owned the vessel. Captain Gerry Shoares had borrowed the gill-netter to haul his gear in the bay, as his craft was on the ways being painted. For some reason, on her return trip, the Anna T lost power and took bottom on the bar at the river's entrance and drifted onto the rocks off what is known as Annisquam. It was a total loss, but with no loss of life.
Captain Shoares had a new vessel built to replace the loss, and Captain Arnold and his partner named the new craft the Phylis A. after Arnold's daughter.

         Canvas #11     "Tom Morse Aboard "Kelpie""  by L.A.Dahlmer
The "Phylis A.", is in the background at the wharf off East Gloucester Square

        Phyllis A. off Arnold's wharf

         from the Gloucester Daily Times
    Receiving a tip that a load of liquor had been landed on Croft Island at Essex, prohibition officers yesterday morning went on a hunting trip, and after scouting around the apparently deserted cottages on the island came to a place that looked as though it might have been recently receiving outside attention.
Forcing their way through the door, the officers went through the rooms and came across a quantity of wet goods. This stuff the officers seized and then requested the local civil guard in back-up and remove it. The liquors were consequently taken to Boston.
The exact amount of the seizure is not definitely known, but it is said to be around 350 cases. 75 of which are mixed liquors and the rest alcohol.

        Picture is of the Weiderman's boat "Mary A." She was built in Essex in 1925 for Capt. Edward Weiderman who was our gr.uncle. He was married to our grandmother's sister Mary A.Gordon. His son, Capt. Axel Weiderman also captained her in the late 1930s before he moved to Rhode Island. The Mary A was documented #224861 at 77X17.1X8.3.    -cousin Bill Hubbard



“Rocky Neck Wonson School Cartesian Society.” (18)

“Belmont Hotel fire on Main St.) (18)

 

       “Leonard Craske’s sculpture “The Man at the Wheel” installed” (18)

      Canvas #105 "Good Harbor Fillet"  by L.A.Dahlmer 
  
 “Birdseye fresh fish freezing plant built on Commercial St.” (18)
 The building with the tower was  originally the Birdseye plant.

        "In 1925, his General Seafood Corporation moved to Gloucester, Massachusetts. There it employed Birdseye's newest invention, the double belt freezer, in which cold brine chilled a pair of stainless steel belts carrying packaged fish, freezing the fish quickly. His invention was subsequently issued as US Patent #1,773,079, marking the beginning of today's frozen foods industry. Birdseye took out patents on other machinery, which cooled even more quickly, so that only small ice crystals could form and cell membranes were not damaged. In 1927, he began to extend the process beyond fish to quick-freezing of meat, poultry, fruit, and vegetables.

In 1929, Birdseye sold his company and patents for $22 million to Goldman Sachs and the Postum Company, which eventually became General Foods Corporation, and which founded the Birds Eye Frozen Food Company. Birdseye continued to work with the company, further developing frozen food technology. In 1930, the company began sales experiments in 18 retail stores around Springfield, Massachusetts, to test consumer acceptance of quick-frozen foods. The initial product line featured 26 items, including 18 cuts of frozen meat, spinach and peas, a variety of fruits and berries, blue point oysters, and fish fillets. Consumers liked the new products and today this is considered the birth of retail frozen foods. The "Birds Eye" name remains a leading frozen-food brand."
     Wikipedia

        Birdseye's plant under construction, off Pavillion Beach and Gloucester's outer harbor.

        Gloucester Society of Artists Gallery, Eastern Point Road, Gloucester, Mass.

         "Gloucester from Across the Water"
              by Hugh H. Breckenridge

        "Bass Rocks by Allan Freelon

        "The Man" by James E. Fitzgerald

        "Gloucester Wharf" by Houghton Cranford Smith

(