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flag  History of Wellfleet, Massachusetts, USA

Journey back in time to Wellfleet, Massachusetts, USA

Visit Wellfleet, Massachusetts, USA. Discover its history. Learn about the people who lived there through stories, old newspaper articles, pictures, postcards and ancestry.

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Wellfleet, Massachusetts, USA - Oyster Point, Wellfleet, 1898  Historic Towns of New England. (1898). United Kingdom: G. P. Putnams sons.

Wellfleet, Barnstable, MA

Captain Lorenzo Dow Baker, the man responsible for mass-scale banana importing in the country, was born and raised in Wellfleet. In 1870, Baker took his ship to Venezuela, and on his way back to New York City, stopped in Jamaica to pick up a few bunches of bananas. Unfortunately, the produce spoiled by the time he reached the United States. Undeterred, Baker returned to Jamaica the following year and picked some green bananas, which ripened on his way home.

Baker earned a substantial profit from these bananas, as he could purchase a bunch for 25 cents and then sell it for $3, the equivalent of nearly $60 in 2018 prices. He would turn this practice into a very successful business where he'd make his fortune.

Wellfleet includes: Billingsgate, Dogtown, Fresh Brook, Money Hill, Packertown, and Pawmet. mass_lookup.htm

There is MUCH more to discover about Wellfleet, Massachusetts, USA. Read on!

Wellfleet Nostalgia: Vintage Photos, Ads, and Postcards

Oyster Point, Wellfleet, 1898

Historic Towns of New England. (1898). United Kingdom: G. P. Putnam
Wellfleet, Massachusetts, USA

Oyster Point, Wellfleet, 1898

Historic Towns of New England. (1898). United Kingdom: G. P. Putnam's sons.
Life-Saving Station at Wellfleet, 1898

Historic Towns of New England. (1898). United Kingdom: G.
Wellfleet, Massachusetts, USA

Life-Saving Station at Wellfleet, 1898

Historic Towns of New England. (1898). United Kingdom: G. P. Putnam's sons.
Street Scene, Wellfleet, Mass.
Wellfleet, Massachusetts, USA

Street Scene, Wellfleet, Mass.

Wellfleet, Massachusetts, USA

Street View and Congregational Church, Wellfleet, Mass.
Wellfleet, Massachusetts, USA

Street View and Congregational Church, Wellfleet, Mass.
Mayos' Beach Light, Wellfleet, Mass.
Wellfleet, Massachusetts, USA

Mayos' Beach Light, Wellfleet, Mass.

Discover Wellfleet: History, News, Travel, and Stories

Add informationAdd History/News/Story
1839 - Wellfleet
Wellfleet, Massachusetts
Barnstable county. This township lies on both sides of Cape Cod: it is bounded N. by Truro, S. by Eastham, and is 33 miles below Barnstable.

The town is on the west side of the Cape: it is neatly built, and although it is surrounded by sand hills and almost entirely destitute of vegetation, it makes a handsome appearance. Wellfleet bay sets into the town from the south, and is separated from Cape Cod bay by several islands, which form a good harbor, at a place called "Deep Hole."

In 1837 there were 120 vessels, measuring about 6,000 tons, belonging to this place, employed in the cod and mackerel fisheries, and a number engaged in the coasting trade. The fishermen took 3,100 quintals of cod fish, and 17,500 barrels of mackerel: the value of which was $128,500. The quantity of salt used was 29,350 bushels: the number of hands employed was 496. During that year there were 39 establishments for the manufacture of salt in this place; the quantity made was... Read MORE...

1845 - WELLFLEET. [Pop. 2,377. Inc. 1763.]
Wellfleet was formerly the north part of Eastham, and extends across the peninsula.

From this town to the extremity of Cape Cod, is a range of Hills, all composed of sand except one, which is of solid clay, and on the seashore.

The town has many ponds among its sands, and the harbor is a good one for small vessels.

The fisheries, and the manufacture of salt, employ most of the inhabitants.

Distance from Barnstable, 33 miles, from Boston, by water, 60.
An Elementary Geography for Massachusetts Children by William Bentley Fowle and Asa Fitz, 1845
1854 - Wellfleet
Wellfleet, a post-township of Barnstable co., Massachusetts, on the northern part of the peninsula of Cape Cod, 65 miles by water and 100 by land S. E. from Boston. The village is situated on the W. side of the peninsula, at the head of Wellfleet Bay, which affords good anchorage for vessels being protected from the sea by several islands. The mackerel fishery is more extensively carried on here than at any other port of Massachusetts, Gloucester only excepted. In 1851, 79 vessels (tons, 6411) and 852 men and boys were employed in the mackerel fishery alone ; the inspections for the year amounted to 11,367 1/ 2 barrels. Pop. of the township, 2411.
A New and Complete Gazetteer of the United States: Giving a Full and Comprehensive Review of the Present Condition, Industry, and Resources of the American Confederacy ... Thomas Baldwin (of Philadelphia.) Joseph Thomas January 1, 1854 Philadelphia : Lippincott, Grambo & Company 1854.
1884 - Wellfleet
The territory comprising this town was formerly included in Eastham, and until the period of its separation their political history is inseparably interwoven; but so far as possible the historical facts pertaining to the territory of the present town, from its first settlement, will find a place in this chapter. Prior to 1644 the territory of Wellfleet had been purchased of George, sachem, succes­sor to Aspinet, and was known as Pononakanet. Here, when the pur­chase of lands to and including Herring brook, with its meadows, had been made, the committee of whites asked the Indians whose lands were those down the Cape, to which the answer was, "Nobody's." "Then they are ours," was the reply, and Wellfleet was the last terri­tory paid for at this end of the county.

Billingsgate was an early name given to the present territory of Wellfleet, which unexplained cognomen still clings to some of its surroundings. At Billingsgate point, where the first lighthouse was subsequently erected,... Read MORE...

Wellfleet Massachusetts, 1890
Wellfleet is an interesting fishing and commercial town in the northeasterly part of Barnstable County, and near the middle of the outer arm of Cape Cod, 106 miles from Boston by the Old Colony Railroad. The stations are Wellfleet, (village and centre) and South Wellfleet; which are also the post-offices. The other villages are Billingsgate, Dog Town, Fresh Brook Village and Painsville.

The population is 1,687. The boundaries are Truro on the north, the ocean on the east, Eastham on the south, and Cape Cod Bay on the west. The assessed area is 5,450 acres; and nearly one half is devoted to woodland; but the actual forest, consisting of oak and pine, is but 833 acres. The territory is about 8 miles in length, and from two to four between ocean and bay. It consists of hills and knolls of sand; and in the hollows between them lie as many as fifteen fresh-water ponds. Of these, eleven are situated almost in a straight line north and south. Gull Pond, the largest and most beautiful, is... Read MORE...

1895 - Wellfleet
Well'fleet, a post-village in Wellfleet township, Barnstable co., Mass., on Cape Cod Bay and the Old Colony Railroad. It is about 65 miles by water and 106 miles by railroad S.E. of Boston. It contains a high school, a savings bank, and 3 churches, and has about 100 vessels employed in the mackerel-fishery, which is the main support of the inhabitants. The township is bounded on the E. by the Atlantic Ocean, and is a part of the peninsula of Cape Cod. Pop. of the township in 1880, 1875; in 1890, 1291.
Lippincott's Gazetteer of the World: A Complete Pronouncing Gazetteer Or Geographical Dictionary of the World Containing Notices of Over One Hundred and Twenty-five Thousand Places ... Joseph Thomas January 1, 1895 J.B. Lippincott
1903 - First Trans-Atlantic Radio Broadcast
First trans-Atlantic radio broadcast between President Theodore Roosevelt and King Edward VII of Great Britain at Marconi Station at Wellfleet countrys/namerica/usstates/ matimeln.htm
Wellfleet, a post-village in Wellfleet township (town), Barnstable co., Mass., on Cape Cod Bay and on the New York, New Haven and Hartford R., 60 miles (direct) SE. of Boston. The town is bounded on the E. by the Atlantic Ocean and is a part of the peninsula of Cape Cod. Pop. of the town in 1900, 988.
Lippincott's New Gazetteer: A Complete Pronouncing Gazetteer Or Geographical Dictionary of the World, Containing the Most Recent and Authentic Information Respecting the Countries, Cities, Towns ... in Every Portion of the Globe Publisher J.B. Lippincott Company, 1906
2023 - Whether you're into outdoor adventures, exploring art galleries, or indulging in fresh seafood, Wellfleet has something for everyone. Here's a list of places to go and things to do in this delightful town:
Cape Cod National Seashore: Start your journey by exploring the Cape Cod National Seashore, which covers a significant portion of Wellfleet. Enjoy pristine beaches, hiking trails, and stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean.

Marconi Beach: This beach is part of the Cape Cod National Seashore and is famous for its large waves and impressive sand dunes. It's perfect for swimming, sunbathing, and surfing.

Wellfleet Bay Wildlife Sanctuary: Nature enthusiasts will love this sanctuary. It offers hiking trails, birdwatching opportunities, and chances to spot local wildlife. Don't miss the beautiful salt marshes.

Wellfleet Harbor: Stroll along the harbor and enjoy the picturesque views of boats and fishing vessels. You can also try your hand at shellfishing or take a scenic boat tour.

Wellfleet Center: The heart of town, Wellfleet Center, boasts charming streets lined with galleries, boutiques, and restaurants. Explore the local art scene and pick up unique souvenirs.

Wellfleet...

Discover MY Roots: Wellfleet Ancestry

Ancestors Who Were Born or Died in Wellfleet, Massachusetts, USA

We currently have information about ancestors who were born or died in Wellfleet.

View Them Now (sorted by year of birth)

male ancestorJohn TREAT (17 May 1693, Eastham, Massachusetts, USA - 1762, Wellfleet, Massachusetts, USA)
female ancestorSally LOMBARD (1779, Wellfleet, Massachusetts, USA - 13 August 1867, Dana, Massachusetts, USA*)
male ancestorMichael COLLINS (1794, Wellfleet, Massachusetts, USA - 22 June 1886, Eastham, Massachusetts, USA )
male ancestorPhillip COVELL (1796, Wellfleet, Massachusetts, USA - 5 February 1863, Dana, Massachusetts, USA*)
male ancestorSylvanus NICHOLSON (1801, Wellfleet, Massachusetts, USA - 9 November 1886, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA)
male ancestorGideon Atwood HARDING (1812, Wellfleet, Massachusetts, USA - , )
male ancestorSimeon BAKER (1818, Wellfleet, Massachusetts, USA - 16 January 1886, Melrose, Massachusetts, USA)
male ancestorWarren Kendrick FREEMAN (1819, Wellfleet, Massachusetts, USA - 1 December 1897, Brookline, Massachusetts, USA)
female ancestorMelissa A. RICH (1843, Wellfleet, Massachusetts, USA - 13 January 1905, Boston, Massachusetts, USA)

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Updated: 10/6/2023 4:33:23 PM