MV Obsession

My obsession with Martha's Vineyard.. phototography..genealogy and life in general and this and that…


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Once Upon A Time There Was A Train From NYC To The Vineyard (really)…

Mid-June every summer of my childhood my mother and I would start our trip to the Vineyard.for the entire summer There was no I-95, not that we had a car anyway… no, our train travels would begin in Newark, New Jersey and end in Woods Hole. Yes, WOODS HOLE, trains used to go right to the ferry.

We would take a train from Pennsylvania Station in Newark, NJ to Pennsylvania station in New York city where we would have to run from one end of the station to the other to board the New York/New Haven & Hartford’s train on the Old Colony line called the Day Cape Codder, which would take us all the way from New York City to Woods Hole, MA. That’s right, all the way to Woods Hole. Pennsylvania Station was built in 1910, covered nearly 8 acres, extended 2 city blocks and was one of the largest public spaces in the world. Its 3 year demolition began in October 1963. It was replace with another Penn Station which Madison Sq Garden sits atop… it’s functional but not as beautiful as the original.

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Penn Station – NYC 1940’s
Penn Station – NYC – current

The trains had dining cars with each table dressed in fancy tablecloths and crisply ironed napkins.  The waiters and conductors were always the same and seemed to remember me from year to year… made me feel special and grown up. Train service to Woods Hole ended in the 1960′s.

Dining car of the Day Cape Codder train – 1940’s

The train stopped at what is now the staging area for cars waiting to get onto the ferries. The tracks ran under the overpass in the left corner of this photograph. It was literally only steps from train to boat. A comfortable and luxurious way to travel in the days when lots of people didn’t have cars and the road system left a lot to be desired anyway.

(Woods Hole circa 1890’s)

(circa 1950’s)

The ferry, the Nobska/Nantucket would take us to MV.

We’d land in Oak Bluffs and our relatives would be there to greet us, and three glorious months on the Vineyard would begin.

We traveled light, I would have my favorite doll, Beverly, and my teddy bear with me and my mother would have a small suitcase with a few belongings in it, the rest of the things… like ALL my toys we sent to and from the Vineyard by Railway Express.

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It took days for the rest of our things to arrive and Beverly and I would watch every day for the Railway Express truck to arrive at our house…

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…and then summer on the Vineyard would officially be under way 🙂

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RDP Friday – Carousel…

The Flying Horses in Oak Bluffs on Martha’s Vineyard are the oldest platform carousel in the United States. It was made in 1876 by early American carousel manufacturer, Charles Dare. The Flying Horses Carousel was originally built for the Coney Island amusement park in Brooklyn. In 1884 after eight years there the Flying Horses Carousel moved to the town of Oak Bluffs on Martha’s Vineyard where it still remains in operation as one of only two surviving carousels fabricated by Dare. The carousel became a National Historic Landmark in 1986, the same year it was acquired by local conservation organization the Martha’s Vineyard Preservation Trust.

I flew on these beautiful horses every day when I was a little girl. The ticket taker was a young man who would never take my tickets ! We tried everything to get him to take them… we brought him candy and cookies and tried slipping the tickets in with them… nothing work. At the end of the summer I said I wanted to buy him a gift, so off my mom and I went to purchase what I thought was a novel idea .. a tie. I was 5 years old, what did I know about buying gifts for men… he, by the way was about 13 but in my eyes he was a grown up. We put the tie in the box with all of summer’s uncollected tickets. As he came around to NOT collect my ticket I handed him the box. He smiled. Ah ha, success… or so I thought. As we were leaving the Flying Horses he came over and thanked us for the tie and as we turned to leave he handed us the tickets.

There are two ring dispenser arms situated next to the carousel that offer gold rings and the lucky rider who grabs the coveted brass ring gets a free ride

The last time I flew on the Flying Horses a few years ago my granddaughter Tiffany was with me.  I thought it might be my last time ever to ride them (I think that every time anyway)… and as my horse came around to the arm shooting the rings out I could see that the next one, the one waiting for me was the GOLD ring.  What a fantastic way to possibly end my Flying Horses ride…

 But I missed it … my fingers slipped and I couldn’t grab it.  But… right behind me was my granddaughter and she got it.  She offered me the free ride but it meant more to me that she should have it.  Perfect ending, if indeed it was.

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Rings of gold are good luck I’m told…

as for riding Flying Horses you’re never too old 🙂

Two other carousels…

New York city’s Bryant Park

Newark, New Jersey’s Military Park

https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2021/06/04/rdp-friday-carousel/


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Challenge Your Camera: #4 Churches…

The Old First Presbyterian Church, the oldest church in Newark, NJ was established in 1666 by the founders of Newark, NJ. My 10 times great-grandfather Robert Treat from Bradford, CT was one of the founders of Newark and member of this church. It wasn’t until 2018 when I joined a walking tour of Newark that I found out the history of the church and my connection to it.

1644 Org. Brandford, Connecticut – 1666 Robert Treat Leads Settlement (my 10th times gr grandfather) – 1668 First Meeting House – 1745 Church Temporal Rule Ends – 1748 Princeton’s 1st Commencement – 1753 Charter From King George II – 1775 British loot manse – 1791 Present (3rd) Church dedicated – 1952 Chapel & (4th) Parish House.

Among the noted pastors of the Church was its 7th pastor from 1736-1755, the Rev Aaron Burr Sr father of Aaron Burr Jr, the 3rd Vice President.

One of these days I hope to get back there and take a tour of the inside of the church.

If you’re interested in the history of the Old First Presbyterian Church of Newark, NJ CLICK HERE

https://nowathome.wordpress.com/2021/01/26/challenge-your-camera-4-churches/


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Our Family Santa…

For many of the years my dad was a police officer in Newark, NJ he worked in the Emergency Squad division. During the long hours between calls the guys would keep themselves busy in various ways like cooking. Near the Christmas holidays they always came up with a special project, like candle making for instance.

In 1956 they made Santas.  I still have ours.  Santa stands about 3 and 1/2 feet tall and is made from press board. After the outline was drawn the guys cut out the Santas and my dad set to work drawing the features, clothing and bag of toys.  At that point our Santa came home and my mother and I painted him.  I’m not sure how many coats of paint we used but Santa was spread out on our kitchen table for about a week before he was completely dry.  I don’t know what kind of paint we used either but here it is 64 years later and he’s not chipped or faded.  This was the only time I ever remember the three of us doing a family project together.

I love everything about this Santa, even the buttons being on the wrong side… but the thing I love the most is that he looks like my dad… a self portrait so to speak.

My creation

Below is my daughter Patty age 2 and 1/2 in 1966…… and her daughter (my granddaughter) Tiffany age 2 and 1/2 in 1991.

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Here’s to Christmas memories, old and new ❤


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2020 Photo Challenge #16…

Converging Lines

Top photo is Route 80 in New Jersey heading west to Pennsylvania and the Delaware Water Gap.

Bottom photo is Plimouth Plantation in Plymouth, Massachusetts

4_20 collage

Below are photos from the island of Martha’s Vineyard in Massachusetts.

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Miscellaneous

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https://nowathome.wordpress.com/2020/04/19/2020-photo-challenge-16/

https://traveltalk.me.uk/2020/04/19/2020-photo-challenge-16/


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Friendly Friday Photo Challenge – Art Unexpected…

Clockwise from upper right:  tree sculpture in PA – easels in windows – statues and metal cows at the Field Gallery on Martha’s Vineyard – sidewalk art – mural in NJ – piano in Greenwich Village, NYC.

My daughter and I are deeply into our genealogy and have been visiting cemeteries where our ancestor are buried.  I’ve always found cemeteries to be interesting places, especially the older ones where grave stones and markers are indeed works of art.  We have several ancestors buried in Mt Pleasant Cemetery in Newark, New Jersey, which is Newark’s oldest cemetery and in my opinion the most beautiful and interesting one.  The cemetery has a special section for the firemen of Newark and that is where my great, great grandfather is buried.  The unexpected art connection to me are the fire hydrants that surround this section.

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https://thesandychronicles.blog/2020/03/06/friendly-friday-challenge-art-unexpected/

 

 


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Downtown Newark, NJ Walking Tour…

What a fun thing to do on a gorgeous April Saturday.  A walking tour of downtown Newark, NJ with Have You Met Newark tours.  Newark is where I was born and grew up and it’s exciting to see what’s going on there.  Here are some pictures of our tour.

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Pictured below is the Prudential Center arena (The Rock) and the NJ Performing Arts Center (NJPAC)

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The Old First Presbyterian Church was established in 1666 by the founders of Newark, NJ.  My 10 times great-grandfather was one of the founders of Newark and he, along with some of my other ancestors were buried there.

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The City Hall, and Broad and Market streets, known as the 4 corners.

 

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The Prudential buildings. The Prudential came to Newark in the late 1800’s, the original building was demolished in 1956 to make way for Prudential Plaza which opened in 1960.  A few blocks away in July 2016 the Prudential Tower opened.

Prudential Plaza                                                          Prudential Tower

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Right in downtown Newark are three lovely parks.  Lincoln Park, Military Park and here is Washington Park.  The Newark museum and library are located on one side of the park.

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Newark always had lots of department stores.  Pictured here are Bamberger’s (which became Macy’s).. and Kresge (which is the K in K-Mart ), there was also Orbach’s and S. Klein all within a two block radius.

But the department store that was always a bit above the others, literally and figuratively was Hahne & Co Hahne’s closed its doors in 1987 and sat empty for 30 years, it has been totally renovated and is gorgeous.  In addition to retail space the new renovation includes 160 apartments.  Note the original Hahne & Co sign.

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I’m a big fan of Newark, not just because I was born and raised there but because it’s a terrific place to visit.  Learn about what Newark is planning for the future, like this beautiful new park. IMG_4200 But also learn about Newark’s place in our history. A fun way to do that is with a group from Have You Met Newark.

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Weekly Photo Challenge: Tour Guide…

The prompt:   Share with us an image, or two, or three, (or more!) of where you live. For bonus points, tell us what it is about the photo(s) that you love. I can’t wait to go on a fantastic virtual tour of the world, courtesy of photo challenge participants. Away we go!

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Rather than share where I live now I want to share where I was born and raised and lived until I got married.

My home town… Newark, New Jersey

Court House - Newark NJ

Above is the Essex County courthouse.  In the forefront is a statue of Abraham Lincoln called the Seated Lincoln sculpted by Gutzon Borglum who was the creator of the Mount Rushmore sculpture of Presidents Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt.

 

 

Surprising to many who don’t know much about the city of Newark, it has some beautiful parks in it. Washington Park, Lincoln Park and the newly revitalized Military Park. Here sits another of Gutzon Borglum’s works,  one of his most compelling : Wars of America. He created this magnificent sculpture over the course of six years, completing it in 1926. It memorializes all the major conflicts in which Americans participated up to and including the First World War.

 

Thus ends a short tour of two of the beautiful sculptures you can find in Newark, New Jersey 🙂

 

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/photo-challenges/tour-guide/