Rockport 1905 From Jim Clyde

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Good Morning Joey!
I don’t know if this would be of any interest to your readers???
Normally I send you shots of me kilted up in Scotland but here’s a different
one…. I would love to know where this shot was taken on the beach in
Rockport around 1905 (I think it’s Front Beach?).  The lady is my
great-grandmother, Ida Marion (Grimes) Burkhard. The three kids (l to r),
are my grandfather, Marion Grimes Burkhard, Stanley Burkhard and Russell
Vietor Burkhard.  Ida’s parents were Marion Grimes and Lucy Foster Pool,
both of Rockport.  (Ida was a descendant of both John Pool and Richard
Tarr). Some old-timers might remember Stan Burkhard… he had demolished my
great-grandmother’s summer cottage on Thurston & North Streets on Bearskin
Neck around 1990 and built a new home on the same spot (at the tender age of
93!), and lived there until he died (there), at the age of 101!  Most people
at 93 don’t even buy green bananas.
Jim Clyde

There is another connection to Cape Ann/Gloucester with this photo… Marion
Grimes (Ida’s father), owned shares in at least three schooners out of
Gloucester in the herring fisheries and owned shares in a schooner built in
Essex called the “Marion Grimes”.  His two brothers, Alden Bradford Grimes
and Manley Grimes were both schooner “masters”.  Manley was lost with all
hands in 1869 on the “John W. Lowe” out of Gloucester in a blizzard off
Newfoundland.  His name is on the cenotaph on Gloucester harbor….Manley’s
grandson, Cal Grimes, was a police officer in Essex for many years.

28 comments

  • Two minor corrections: The “John W. Lowe” was lost on its maiden voyage in 1867, not 1869 and Cal Grimes was Manley’s great-grandson, not grandson.

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  • My father’s name was Manley Bradley Grimes. He was born in Rockport and was a brother to Cal Grimes’ s father Calvin Grimes. Cal and I are 1st cousins.
    This clipping was interesting to me.
    Thank you, David Grimes–Keokuk, Iowa

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    • Wow, David! Iowa’s a long way from Rockport! (That’s west of Framingham, isn’t it??)
      Glad you enjoyed the post. Manley is an unusual name… I have wondered if Manley was named after the Revolutionary War captain from Marblehead, John Manley, skipper of the privateer “Lee”?? …….(or somehow related to him?)

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  • And…..Manley was also my great grandfather ..Cal is my brother and David is my first cousin.. who btw Fred Bodin featured in one of his blog posts here a while back…
    Thanks, Jim Clyde for posting this.
    Brenda Grimes Davis

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    • Hi Brenda! Cal’s a great guy! He was very surprised when I chatted him up one day in Essex and told him details of his great-grandfather and our common ancestors.
      I often contemplate the horrifying experience it must have been for Manley and his crew to be caught a blizzard off Newfoundland in January, knowing they were doomed…..courageous men. Manley was only 27 at the time of the sinking. By the way, if you’re interested, I can show/tell you where Mark & Abigail Grimes (parents of Marion, Manley & Alden), lived in Rockport (and where they’re all buried)….

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  • I’ll take the photo and walk front and back beach this weekend. Looks more of a match to Back beach but one has to add trees which have probably filled in since 1905. just have to match those rocks that are definitely to big to have been pushed around by storms.

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    • Thank you, Paul! You might notice a “structure” (?) at the top of the photo…someone had suggested that it might be a “chimney”(?) of the old Rockport Granite Company??

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      • You know, I took the photo and cranked the contrast trying to figure out what that was. A water Standpipe long since gone but it is the exact right shape for the tip of the Tool Company Chimney. And now the shore starts looking more of a match further north nearby. It may be on the shore behind the post office in Pigeon Cove along the shore there somewhere down to the QuarterDeck Inn. They could have been going to any number of churches along that stretch that are now houses. It might have to wait to take a slow trawl in a boat along the shore imagining where the chimney was. It’s gone now but still fresh in our memory where it was.
        I like treasure hunts like this and will not rest until I find that big rock on the right with the crack. That should still be there. The sand they are standing on is likely long since gone. No sand along there today.

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        • And now that I look a little more closely, I see a “fence” above them? Access road to a pier? Ida was a big fan of the UU church (see my comments below), so I can’t imagine them going anywhere else…. Thanks for your interest, Paul!

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  • Jim… Your great grandmother looks like a strong lady. I enjoyed the picture and the story, and I enjoyed being Stanley’s next door neighbor in the final years of his life. Thanks.
    Peter Goodwin
    Rockport

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    • Thanks, Pete! Stan certainly was a character! He used to tell me: “Jim… you marry the right woman… there’s nothing like it! ……… You marry the wrong woman….there’s nothing like it”. I miss him.

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    • From what I have heard, Ida was a character too…. people would ask how her (3) boys were and she’d respond very seriously, “They’re fine thank you….. and they’re all out of jail”. She was a seasonal member of the Unitarian Church in town (where her parents, Marion and Lucy were married in 1860), and was a dedicated contributor to the the church’s clothing drive. The constant worry was that if you inadvertently left any pieces of your clothing lying around the house, they would disappear. Ida would scoop them up and take them to the church! Her sister, Jennie Foster Grimes, was a teacher (on the lower East Side of Manhattan), and in 1940 wrote the opening poem for the publication celebrating the 100th Anniversary of the founding of Rockport.

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  • Wow great history here and I don’t know the beach but will ask my contacts and see if anyone recongnizes this…thanks :-)

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  • Jim — what a special photo. I remember Stan (via the UUSR) as a fine gentleman.

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    • Thank you, Amy! If Stan engaged you in conversation, he would inevitably get the date of your birthday (without you even realizing it), and send you a card. I remember him telling me one time that someone had called him to thank him for his card and mentioning that it was the only one they had gotten!!

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  • Love to hear these stories ~ I have enjoyed this post ~ that time period of Gloucester and Rockport must have been an amazing world of self starters ~ people who could think and “do” for themselves to add their legacy to a town so full of stories ~ including Stan’s advice!

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    • Thanks Mary! Stan actually was born and brought up in Brooklyn, NY…. his maternal grandfather, Marion Grimes, had moved down there from RP with Lucy and set up a wholesale fish brokering business at 2 Coenties Slip in lower Manhattan. Stan’s paternal great-grandfather, Peter Burkhard, had bought a coppersmithing business at 6 Vesey Street in Manhattan in 1836 (right next to the World Trade Center)… Stan was the fourth generation to run the business. But the family always gravitated in the summers to Rockport/Gloucester because that’s where the family originated…..
      I’m sure this is more information than you’d like but I find it interesting (I think I’m the only one!!)
      But, yes, you are correct. The earlier generations didn’t lie around waiting for the government to take care of them.

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  • Yea, I agree. Looks more like Back Beach.

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  • they sure don’t look very happy—–do they? I guess if you had to dress like that you wouldn’t smile much either!

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    • My grandfather (on the left), apparently never smiled for his photo! But no one looks particularly pleased! They were probably on their way to church!!

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  • Jim, looking back at the few records I could find..actually, I think Manly, who was lost on the John W. Lowe was my great great grandfather..
    as it says here .. http://www.haskellfamilyhistory.com/database/11424.html … my great grandfather (married to Grace L. Bradley) wasn’t born until 1864. I think it was Manley’s father Manly (married to Ellen Clark) who was lost at sea.
    I would love you to point me to the graves and homestead. My grandmother Grimes died when I was 6..but, I remember going to her house on Broadway, across from the fire station..could that be it?

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    • Right… Manley the son born 1864 had a shop on Broadway…. Cal had brought over a picture of him in front of the store…. so your great-grandfather and my great-great grandfather were brothers… Mark and Abigail (MacLaughlin) Grimes lived at 6 Mill Lane…. nice old house that sits sideways to the street overlooking the old burial ground….(Mike?) Costello lives there now… Mark & Abigail are buried in the Union Cemetery off upper Main Street. My gg grandfather Marion Grimes and Lucy are in Beech Grove. I also have Haskell family… I go back to both Roger and William Haskell (whose home is still standing on Lincoln Street in West Gloucester).
      I think everybody on Cape Ann is related! Give me a call and I’d be happy to fill you in!
      Call the Cricket Press in Manchester and ask for me… 526-7131.

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  • When people would call my dad “Manley” he would always correct them and say “my father’s name was Manley my name is Manley B.”.
    I saw my grandfather’s grave and stone once in a Rockport cemetery all it had on the stone was “Father”.
    I have one picture of my Grandma and Grandpa Grimes in front of the store on Broadway in Rockport.
    We came to visit Rockport every summer in the 1950′s and 60′s, about 1200 miles.
    I always loved it there.
    Dave Grimes
    Keokuk, IA

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    • It would be fun to see that picture…. After I had bumped into Cal in Essex, he stopped by my house with a shot of his grandfather Manley in front of his store on Broadway….or his house? There is another David Grimes who was Elliot Grimes’ son… had an insurance agency near the John Tarr store… is that you?? If so, we’ve met (YEARS ago!). Of course, Loring Grimes lived across from Toad Hall in the big white house down from the library… He was a cousin of Marion’s I believe.

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  • Jim, I’ll look for that picture this weekend. If I find it, I’ll scan it and find your e-mail and send it to you.
    I’m not the David at the insurance company.
    I have lived in Keokuk all my life.
    My dad came to Keokuk during WWII to protect the dam here from Japanese sabatouge. He was in the Coast Guard.
    Yes I like my cousin Cal too.
    He was my big cousin hero when I was a kid.
    He gave me Boston Red Sox hats and a Gloucester High School P.E. t-shirt I had for years.
    Last week as I was working on the Keokuk Dam I thought of my Great Grandfather Grimes and his boat off Newfoundland.
    It was 2:00 A.M. cold -15, 40 mph wind, snowing and dark and icy.
    We had to thaw gates for a quick thaw on the Mississippi.
    Dave Grimes
    Keokuk

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  • my guess , anisquam river where the railroad bridge now is …….? or nugents farm little good harbor the tidal harbor that once held many boats and a rail system that would launch newly constructed boats coming down the hill from pond road if we launched a boat from there nowadays it might land on the second floor of the new condos that are going to be built hmmmmmmmmmm .rock the caz bah

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