Cape Cod’s Hyannis Harbor Lighthouse

Hyannis Harbor Light

By Mary Moran

Hyannis, a village in the town of Barnstable and the highest populated area on Cape Cod, was once a busy and successful port for both fishing and trade in the 1800’s. It is located in what is called the Mid Cape area. With maritime traffic increasing, the need for a navigational aid in the harbor became apparent. The Point Gammon Light, built at the southern approach to the harbor in 1816, guided vessels to the harbor, but another light was needed for the dangerous areas inside the harbor itself. Daniel Snow Hallett, a Barnstable local, did his best to provide his own light for the waters by hanging a lamp in the window of a beach shack that he built at his own expense. Unfortunately, his efforts weren’t very effective and in 1848, $2,000 was appropriated by Congress to erect a proper lighthouse in the South Hyannis Harbor area.

In May of the following year, the freshly built Hyannis Harbor Light, a 19-foot conical brick tower, was put into service. The structure consisted of five oil lamps and parabolic reflectors that provided a fixed white light 43 feet above the water level. The lighthouse also produced a red sector to warn passing vessels away from the dangerous Southwest Shoal.The Hyannis Harbor Light property expanded in 1851 when another $800 was given in order to build a house for a lighthouse keeper. The wooden structure was built beside the lighthouse, connected by a convenient covered walkway. The position of keeper was given to John H. Lothrop in 1871 but was soon taken over by his son, Alonzo, in 1878 after Lothrop’s death only eight years into his duty. Alonzo Lothrop remained at his inherited post for a little over 20 years. He resigned from the position in 1899. After his resignation, the keeper position was given to a man named Captain John Peak. Peak had come from a long legacy of lighthouse keepers and was known for letting the local children help with his lighthouse chores and even giving private sailing lessons to the children who were able to swim. Almost fifteen years after Peak’s retirement in 1915, the Hyannis Harbor Light was discontinued and its lantern was removed from the structure. The lighthouse, keeper’s house, and property were sold at auction to A.W. Fuller for $7,007. Fuller then sold the property and throughout the years the old lighthouse was passed through the hands of many owners. Current owners, Janice Hyland and Alan Granby, built their own unique top to the lighthouse tower. Although it is anything but traditional, it is reportedly an excellent spot to catch a glorious Cape Cod sunset. In addition to the original lighthouse, the keeper’s house (1849) and oil house (1902) both remain standing to this day, and although the property is privately owned, one can get a great view of the old tower by taking a stroll east on Keyes Beach in Hyannis.

Hyannis is just twenty miles from the Palmer House Inn. While in Hyannis one can visit the JFK Cape Cod Museum that commemorates the president’s life on the Cape. There are also harbor cruises where visitors view the harbor and the Kennedy compound buildings and grounds.


Cape Cod's Stowe Room, A
Harriet Beecher Stowe room
Cape Cod's Roosevelt Room, B
Cape Cod’s Roosevelt Room, B

While all of our rooms have their own individual charm suitable for relaxation after the most wonderful day of adventures all over the Cape, we recommend the Harriet Beecher Stowe room, the Theodore Roosevelt room or the Emily Dickinson room. These rooms feature comfortable king beds, fireplaces, jacuzzi-style tubs and a relaxing stay before and after your day.


Mary Moran is a Falmouth native and knowledgable about Cape Cod. In addition to writing for the Palmer House Inn, she’s also frequently at the inn and available  to answer quest’s questions. She enjoys reading, hiking, and spending time exploring Falmouth’s coastal waterways.

Fantastic Cape Events This Fall

3 Fantastic Cape Events this Fall in Falmouth, Cape Cod.

3 Fantastic Cape Events This Fall

Festivals, fine music, and frights for everyone.

3 Fantastic Cape Events this Fall in Falmouth, Cape Cod.
3 Fantastic Cape Events this Fall in Falmouth, Cape Cod.

Scallop Fest 2015, September 18, 19, 20, 2015

Scallops by the sea, Cape Cod
Scallops by the bay.

50,000+ Patrons over 3 fun-filled days! Famous Fried Scallop & Herb Roasted Chicken Dinners, a Food Court – Beer & Wine, Chowder, Lobster Rolls, Raw Bar, Hotdogs, Burgers, Salads, Wraps, Fried Dough, a Juried Arts & Craft Show, Fantastic Entertainment, an Inflatable Ride Park & Obstacle Course, and more. Held at the Cape Cod Fairgrounds, just 15 minutes from the Palmer House Inn.

www.scallopfest.org

JazzFest Falmouth, September 26 – October 4

JazzFest Falmouth
JazzFest Falmouth

Our second fantastic Cape event this Fall is wonderful, JazzFest Falmouth, an eight-day celebration of a uniquely American art form presented by ArtsFalmouth. There will be lectures, recitals, concerts, a Jazz Stroll, a Jam Session, and a jazz brunch. 

We will have cranberry oatmeal cookies and cider as afternoon refreshments. By the way, the Friday evening entertainment starts at the Queen’s Buyway shops with entertainment in the shops. Then they stroll past the Palmer House to the Museums on the Green where there will be more entertainment, then down to Main Street for an evening where the shops stay open late with entertainment.

www.jazzfestfalmouth.org

Falmouth Village of Scarecrows, October 2015

Each fall for the last few years, one by one the scarecrows begin appearing throughout Falmouth Village, MA.  See if you can find all them all. We’re also looking forward to Falmouth’s annual Halloween festivities: the Trick or Treat Stroll, A Visit with the Night Watchman at the Museums on the Green, and Halloween Spooktacular at Highfield Hall.

Falmouth Village of Scarecrows, Palmer House
Falmouth Village of Scarecrows, Palmer House

 


Cape Cod's Stowe Room, A
Harriet Beecher Stowe room
Cape Cod's Roosevelt Room, B
Cape Cod’s Roosevelt Room, B

While all of the bedchambers at the Palmer House have their own charm suitable for relaxation after the most wonderful day of adventures sampling the fantastic Cape events this Fall, we recommend the Harriet Beecher Stowe room, the Theodore Roosevelt room or the Emily Dickinson room. These rooms feature comfortable king beds, fireplaces, jacuzzi-style tubs for a relaxing stay before and after your day.

Cape Cod Scallop Festival

Cape Cod Scallop Festival in Falmouth, Cape Cod, Massachusetts, USA.

46th Annual Cape Cod Scallop Festival

By Mary Moran
Photography by P.L. O’Connell

Cape Cod Scallop Festival in Falmouth, Cape Cod, Massachusetts, USA.
Cape Cod Scallop Festival.

The year was 1969 and the local fisherman from the town of Bourne and surrounding areas came together and decided to hold a Scallop Festival in order to entice more tourists to the area and also hold a fun, celebration-like event, that was suitable for the entire family. The festival was such a success that it became an annual event, that has since been taken over and organized by the Cape Cod Canal Region Chamber of Commerce. Today, the Cape Cod Scallop Festival is attended by over 50,000 visitors annually.  The amount of deliciously fresh scallops that are deep-fried to mouth-watering perfection, weigh in at over 3 tons! That is a whole lot of seafood.

In order to hold the event during inclement weather, the festival was “tented” so that no one would miss out on all that fabulous Cape Cod seafood. The “rain or shine” affair was, for many years, located at the foot of the railroad bridge at Buzzard’s Bay Park. With an exponential increase in attendees, the event was moved to the Cape Cod Fairgrounds right here in our beautiful town of Falmouth. With acres and  acres of open land and with an ample amount of free parking available, the Fairgrounds were deemed the perfect location for the popular food event.

While the Cape Cod Scallop Festival’s main focus is on the scallops, there is something for everyone. The other main course offered at the festival is an oven-roasted chicken dinner (provided by J&J Concessions). All meals are served with French fries, coleslaw, a roll, and a soda.

If those two tempting entrees STILL don’t entice you, or if you are looking for something for the kids, there is a full food court with options such as lobster rolls, salads, hamburgers, hot dogs, chicken fingers and more. You can even grab a beer or a glass of wine to wash down your hearty meal of choice.

Outside of the food court, possibilities for good ol’ family fun are endless. Local musicians and actors perform live from open to close each day, and classic carnival rides are around every corner. There is also face-painting, arts and crafts, and many other great activities too. *****New this year: an inflatable park, perfect for the kids.*****

Scallop glass ornaments on Waterford champagne glasses at the Palmer House Inn, in Falmouth, Cape Cod, Massachusetts, USA.
Scallop glass ornaments.

The Cape Cod Scallop Fest has turned into such a majorly successful and satisfying event that it has been named in the,” Top 100 Events in North America” for five years in a row!

The 46th Annual Cape Cod Scallop Festival will be held on September 18th-20th of this year, rain or shine. It’s located at the Cape Cod Fairgrounds, 1220 Nathan Ellis Highway (Rte. 151), East Falmouth, Massachusetts. Hours of operation are from 10 to 10 on Friday and Saturday, and from 10 to 6 on Sunday. For a list of this year’s entertainment line-up and for general admission and combo ticket prices, visit the event’s website at www.scallopfest.org. Children under six enter for free! Come support local Cape Cod businesses and spend a day at the Cape Cod Scallop Fest! Guaranteed fun for the whole family (and your stomach too)!


Cape Cod's Stowe Room, A
Harriet Beecher Stowe room
Cape Cod's Roosevelt Room, B
Cape Cod’s Roosevelt Room, B

While all of the bedchambers at the Palmer House have their own charm suitable for relaxation after the most wonderful day of adventures sampling the best Cape Cod’s seafood, we recommend the Harriet Beecher Stowe room, the Theodore Roosevelt room or the Emily Dickinson room. These rooms feature comfortable king beds, fireplaces, jacuzzi-style tubs for a relaxing stay before and after your day.

 


Mary Moran is a Falmouth native and knowledgable about Cape Cod. In addition to writing for the Palmer House Inn, she’s also frequently at the inn and available  to answer quest’s questions. She enjoys reading, hiking, and spending time exploring Falmouth’s coastal waterways.