Tag Archives: Alice M. Curtis

Motif No. 1 and the Fish Boat, 1934

Motif No. 1, Rockport, 1934 Alice M. Curtis/©/Fredrik D. Bodin
Motif No. 1 is the most famous fish shack in the world, constructed around the time of the American Civil War (exact year uncertain). Initially used for storing fishing gear, it is located on Bradley Wharf, in the middle of Rockport Harbor (MA). The building soon became a popular subject for painters, including students of renowned artist Lester Horby (1882–1956), who coined the term “Motif No. 1.” Motif became an art studio in the 1930′s and was sold to the Town of Rockport in 1945, dedicated to the Rockport men and women who served in the armed forces. In this photograph, a 17′ Montgomery Fish Boat glides by. The Fish Boat class was designed in 1921 by Nick Montgomery. Six to eight hundred were made at the Montgomery Boatyard in Gloucester, and still are at the historic yard on the Annisquam River. This one probably sailed from the Sandy Bay Yacht Club. They were also raced at the Annisquam and Eastern Point Yacht Clubs. You can read more about the boatyard and fish boats in a GMG post by E.J. Lefavour here. Coincidentally, when I was traveling through the southwestern U.S., I visited Rockport, Texas – a small fishing town (mainly shrimp). In the restaurant where I stopped for lunch, there was a laminated placemat on my table with a photo of … guess what?
Printed archivally from the original 4×5 inch film negative in my darkroom. Image #A8345-196
Fred


Fredrik D. Bodin
Bodin Historic Photo
82 Main Street
Gloucester, MA 01930

Saint Anthony’s-by-the-Sea

Saint Anthony’s Chapel, 1930 Alice M. Curtis/©Fredrik D. Bodin
Saint Anthony’s Chapel was consecrated in 1925 and designed by renowned architect Edward T. P. Graham (1872–1964). Graham was considered the “dean of Boston architects,” and recognized for his mediaeval style Roman Catholic churches. This church, constructed of fieldstone in the English parish gothic style, sits at the foot of Eastern Point at Farrington and Saint Louis Avenues. Mrs. Margaret Brady Farrell had Saint Anthony’s built and donated to the Archdiocese of Boston in memory of her father, Anthony Nicholas Brady (1841-1913). Notice the Saint Anthony statue in the niche below the cross, the observation tower on the right, and vintage autos in front. The interior is equally beautiful. I’ve been in there to photograph a few weddings, notably that of George and Ellen Sibley. Because so many local couples have married in the chapel, and continue to do so, this photo is a popular present for weddings and anniversaries. I always try to have it available in the gallery, especially in the spring. Saint Anthony’s Chapel is now part of Gloucester’s Holy Family Parish, and open in the summer.
Printed archivally from the original 5×7 inch film negative in my darkroom. Image #A8557-011
Fred


Fredrik D. Bodin
Bodin Historic Photo
82 Main Street
Gloucester, MA 01930

Plum Cove, Gloucester

Plum Cove Sunset, circa 1930 Alice M. Curtis/©Fredrik D. Bodin
I’ve been saving this photograph for a year. It reminds me of Easter sunrise services I have attended, even though this is a sunset. It must have been chilly that day, because the people in the foreground are wearing coats and hats, typical of Easter mornings in the Northeast. The freshwater stream flowing down the beach is gone, and a low tide exposes rocks not visible when the tide is in. Black & white sunsets can be striking. They are abstractions, because we naturally see in color. This photo challenges our minds to fill in the colors: a visual extrapolation.
Printed archivally from the original 4×5 inch film negative in my darkroom. Image # A8945-424
Note: This post marks one year of my weekly posts to Good Morning Gloucester. It’s been enlightening to work in a new medium (for me), and I’m very grateful to have made new friends in the GMG community of readers and contributors. A special hat’s off to Joey C. and Sharon Lowe, who publish my work, help me navigate unfamiliar waters, and are always encouraging. I look forward to more creative collaboration in the future. Thanks so much!
Fred
Fredrik D. Bodin
Bodin Historic Photo
82 Main Street
Gloucester, MA 01930

Spring Outing at Cressys Beach, 1914

Cressys Beach, 1914 Alice M. Curtis/@Fredrik D. Bodin
Spring has arrived, and  spring photos are in order. In this photograph, a school outing is underway at Cressys Beach. Young boys in ties and girls in long dresses and bonnets bask in the sun, explore the rocks, and cautiously wade into the water. Only a few brave lads have ventured out to the rock. All the while, teachers keep watch on their flock. In the photo below, photographer Alice Curtis has moved her 5″x7″ (film size) view camera with heavy glass film and wooden tripod up the hill for an overall shot. On the left, players man the outfield for a baseball game. We’re fortunate to have Stage Fort Park, a public park owned by the City of Gloucester and located on the city’s first settlement site (1623). In addition to two beaches, the park offers athletic fields, picnicking, grilling, and exceptionally dramatic views.
Cressys Beach, 1914 Alice M. Curtis/@Fredrik D. Bodin

Note: The United States Board of Geographic Names (US BGN) defines the official names of everything geographic. Officially the name is  is Cressy Beach, with the variant of Cressys Beach. See my GMG post from last November: http://goodmorninggloucester.wordpress.com/?s=us+bgn
Fred
Both photographs printed archivally from the original 5×7 inch glass negatives in my darkroom. Image # A8457-086 (top) and A8657-087 (bottom).
Fredrik D. Bodin
Bodin Historic Photo
82 Main Street
Gloucester, MA 01930

The Stone Sloop Albert Baldwin

Stone Sloop Albert Baldwin, 1934 Alice M. Curtis/©Fredrik D. Bodin
I’ve been waiting fruitlessly for a Nor’easter snowstorm to post a winter photograph. It looks like tomorrow’s little storm could be my last opportunity, so I’m taking it. This is the Sloop Albert Baldwin, iced in off Rocky Neck. The 90 foot long Baldwin was built in 1890 at the James and Tarr shipyard in Essex. She was designed with extra reinforcement for transporting granite along the New England coast. The pilings in the photo are remnants of the Rocky Neck ferry pier, which was at the present public parking lot. Abandoned and derelict, the sloop was still rotting away when I came to Gloucester in 1980. About ten years later, the Sloop Albert Baldwin was cut up and hauled away.
Printed from the original 5×7 inch film negative in my darkroom. Image #A8857-149
Fred
Fredrik D. Bodin
Bodin Historic Photo
82 Main Street
Gloucester, MA 01930

The Hotel on Pavilion Beach from Fred Bodin

The Pavilion Hotel, Gloucester, circa 1880 Alice M. Curtis/©Fredrik D. Bodin
The Pavilion Hotel, built in 1849, was Gloucester’s first true resort hotel. It was located between Stacy Boulevard and Fort Square, on the edge of downtown. The Gloucester Telegraph called it “the first specimen of architectural good taste ever seen here.” The Pavilion featured a two level veranda with dramatic harbor views, fine dining, a saltwater pool, bowling, and accommodated 150 guests. The beachfront of the hotel, called Crescent Beach at the time, is now called Pavilion Beach. On a foggy night in October of 1914, the 65 year old Pavilion Hotel, then named the Surfside Hotel, was consumed by fire. The building which we call the Tavern now sits where the Pavillion once was.
Printed archivally from the original 8×10 inch glass negative in my darkroom. Image #A88810-003.
Fred
Fredrik D. Bodin
Bodin Historic Photo
82 Main Street
Gloucester, MA 01930

Dog Bar Breakwater

Dog Bar Breakwater, circa 1906 (note lack of rip rap on the ocean side on right) Alice M. Curtis/©Fredrik D. Bodin
Dog Bar Breakwater extends nearly half a mile from the tip of Eastern Point across the entrance to Gloucester Harbor. It not only shelters the harbor, but also covers the treacherous Dog Bar Reef, for which it is named. Construction by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers began in 1894 and continued until December 1905. The foundation of the structure is granite rubble taken from Cape Ann quarries, and is capped by 12 ton granite blocks supplied by the Cheves Granite Company of Rockport. A total of 231,760 tons of granite were used to build the breakwater. A small tower lighthouse marks it’s outermost extremity.
Ledge Hill Trail, Ravenswood, 1919 Alice M. Curtis/©Fredrik D. Bodin
Eastern Point Light and Dog Bar Breakwater are located at the end of Eastern Point Boulevard, The adjoining  parking lot and breakwater are part of Massachusetts Audubon’s 51 acre Eastern Point Wildlife Sanctuary -http://www.massaudubon.org/Nature_Connection/Sanctuaries/Eastern_Point/index.php
Fred
Fredrik D. Bodin
Bodin Historic Photo
82 Main Street
Gloucester, MA 01930

Cape Ann – a Farming Town

Goose Cove, circa 1890 Charle E. Dennison/ ©Fredrik D. Bodin
Gloucester and Rockport have historically produced nearly everything they needed: Ships, anchors, tools, rope, lumber, granite, fish, produce, and milk. Our first farm was established in 1658 by James Babson, and was located at the Babson Cooperage property in Rockport. Gallery visitor Laura Kerr told me that she and her husband counted eighteen working dairies on Cape Ann. In my shop, I display bottles from Bass Rocks Farm (George C. Nugent),  D.J. Spittle Dairy, Doctor Babson Farm (Washington Street in Riverdale), Kerr Farm (Riverdale), Lanes Dairy (The Best Milk – From Our Dairy to You), Lanes Farms, and O’Neil & Newman (West Gloucester). I wish I had more information and bottles.
 F. Maynard Tucker’s Vegetable Truck, 1930 Alice M. Curtis/ ©Fredrik D. Bodin
Photographs printed from the original 5×7 inch glass negative in my darkroom. Images # JW-001 (Cow) and A8457-037 (Vegetable Truck)
Dr. Babson’s milk bottle, from Fred’s collection.
Fredrik D. Bodin
Bodin Historic Photo
82 Main Street
Gloucester, MA 01930

The Castle on Salt Island

 Castle on Salt Island, 1919 Alice M. Curtis/ @Fredrik D. Bodin
I encounter locals, and even Brier Neck residents whose homes overlook Salt Island, who don’t know about the castle that was situated there. Here’s the story:
In the fall of 1919, the Fox Movie Company built a wood and plaster facade of a Gothic castle for the silent film Bride 13. This was a 15 part serial, or cliff hanger. The plot revolved around the kidnapping and ransom of thirteen beautiful damsels by a ruthless Moroccan pirate and his motley crew. Action scenes included the firing of a 450 pound cannon, a hot air balloon escape, US Navy battleships and submarine, a schooner wrecked and burned in Brace Cove, and the dynamiting of the castle as the movie’s finale.

Where is this film? I’d love to know. All sources indicate that Bride 13 was either lost or destroyed, as happened with many silent films. The reference used for this post was the May 1972 Yankee Magazine article, Lights! Camera! Disaster!, authored by the late Joseph E. Garland of Gloucester. Thanks, Joe–you gave us so much–we miss you.

Photograph printed from the original 5×7 inch glass negative in my darkroom. Image # A8357-053
Fred Bodin
Bodin Historic Photo
82 Main Street
Gloucester, MA 01930