Cape Cod, or simply “The Cape” as it is known to most New Englanders, is a small peninsula jutting out into the Atlantic Ocean. It is the Easternmost portion of Massachusetts. Cape Cod’s small town charm and beautiful beaches make it a destination location, especially during summer months.
But how much more do you know about Cape Cod? We thought we would give you a little background information on the alluring Cape Cod area!
Although the Cape was originally connected to the mainland, the Cape Cod Canal, which opened in 1914, technically transformed the Cape into a large island, although it is not often thought of this way.
There are three main bridges that span the peninsula to mainland Massachusetts: the Sagamore, Bourne and Cape Cod Canal Railroad Bridge.
Historically, Cape Cod was a landmark for early explorers, possibly as early as 1000 AD by Norse voyagers. Bartholomew Gosnold, an English lawyer and privateer whom helped create Jamestown, named the peninsula “Cape Cod” in 1602; the name stuck.
Cape Cod was among the first places settled by Europeans in North America. However, Barnstable, Sandwich and Yarmouth were the only towns that developed quickly, the other 15 towns remained little more than clusters of huts.
Early on forest and vegetation was cleared for heating homes on Cape Cod. A series of unwise agricultural choices lead to serious erosion on the Cape, and many harbor areas were flooded with soil eroding from the peninsula during the late 18th century. Because of these various complications and it’s proximity to the Atlantic, Cape Cod became a center for the fishing and whaling industries.
This may have hurt the waterlife but benefited the lands, and by 1950 Cape Cod was once again a densely wooded area. The Cape’s natural beauty turned it into a favorite place for harried urbanites looking for solace from nearby New York and Boston.
Now, much of the East-facing Altlantic seacoast of Cape Cod consists of wide, sandy beaches. In 1961 a significant portion of the area was made into the Cape Cod National Seashore.
We are greatful for this foresight, so now every year so many of us come to enjoy the beauty and natural history of Cape Cod. Visitors enjoy boardwalk trails, birdwatching and whale watching. Come and experience Cape Cod for yourself at our B&B soon!
Tags: Cape Cod History