The Crosby brothers came to Osterville in 1798, leased some land and set up a boat building shop and dock. Records show them building a two masted topsail schooner in 1804. Hinckley joined as an apprentice and later took over the shipyard around 1816. His boat building continued until 1857, his last vessel being the Leanara, a packet that ran between Boston and Hartford. Descendants of the Crosby brothers built boat shops in several places around the bay and in 1850 the first Crosby Cat Boat was built. It was immediately recognized for its utilitarian design and the Crosby family then built over 3,000 wooden cat boats.
The boat shops and sheds at the historical society are filled with the stories, drawings and models of the Crosby cat boat. For a boat lover, you could get lost wandering the various rooms and sheds admiring the work of the old masters.
If you are a sailor, you shouldn't miss this little stop in Osterville. The grounds are lovely and peaceful and there are additional informational displays inside the main historic society house at the front of the grounds.
I was so impressed with the Historic Society in Osterville. Usually people get bored easily in these places, but here you have things to interest almost everyone. They have a wonderful early house museum furnished in the period; a museum building with displays of glass; seaside treasures; local history, and more; plus the Jelly House and the Boatbuilding sheds filled with examples of and the history of... the Crosby boats built in Osterville for over a hundred years. The grounds are pleasant, the gardens striking. Now what else are you looking for?
What a great collection of antique cars in this parade. I especially liked that they line up on the grounds of the Historical Society before the parade, so you can walk around them, talk to the owners, and take all the photos you want. Some of them are absolutely extraordinary. One was a reproduction, but awesome. Guess my favorites will always be the Model A or Model T Fords. Especially if they have those bright orange wheels! yahooo!
The Melons own a home on the shore here...and there are interesting things like tug boats and a bridge to motor under..I enjoyed all of it. quiet spots, grasses, dunes, and sails ... old yachts. It's all good.
This is where the Crosby boat builders made their home. The large building is the more modern rendition of their headquarters. nice to see an old business like that continue into modern day. They have been in existance since the 1800's, I believe.
Some were taking sailing lessons, while others want the yacht club activities. There is a great assortment of motor and sail boats in this area. Obviously there is considerable wealth in the town...evidenced by their collection of yachts, for one thing.
I enjoyed a number of them...altho my favorite is usually a sail boat.
We were told of a closing for one of the beaches. Seems that the plovers are nesting and we cannot disturb this endangered species. The beach lovers weren't too happy about that, but I don't think the beach stays closed for very long. And it is for good reason.
Of course the gulls kept us company all along our way. There was quite a variety of gulls here. The ecosystem is very delicate but wonderful.
Even tho the weather was overcast, I thoroughly enjoyed motoring around the coves in Osterville. My friends have about a 20 foot outboard motor boat which was just right for our little outing. Several interesting points of interest along the way. Very shallow waters with a narrow channel so you have to beware when the traffic gets heavy on a busy day.
I visited a dear old friend in Osterville. She's an avid gardener even tho she's a very active member of the community and an executive in her work life. Life is lived out of doors as much as possible...and of course every garden has blue hydraengers (sp?), which are a trademark for the Cape Cod gardens.
Dowses Beach is a popular summer attraction in Osterville. Although one must have a town beach sticker to park at the beach, it is well worth the walk if you are without one. The surf isn't too rough and the water is very warm, perfect for taking the family for a day or an afternoon. Lifeguards are on duty until 4pm and a snack truck is available as well...ya know, just in case you forgot your water or you're in need of some ice cream refreshment.
Swim lessons are available to those who sign up early (beginning of summer) at the bathhouse. There's also a wheelchair accessible ramp to the water. Completely kid/family friendly, although at times a little crowded. Oh, and you might run into one of the "locals"--the ever-present seagull--trying to invade your beach blanket every now and then, but just "shoo" them away and you're set. :-)
Floaty toys may sometimes be off-limits depending on wind speed/direction and current conditions. And sorry, you have to leave that cool new kite at home--they're off limits at all times.
Happy beach day!