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Provincetown Railroad Crossing at Standish and Commercial Street
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At the corner of Standish Street the tracks of the Old Colony Railroad (later the New York, New Haven & Hartford) crossed Commercial Street onto Railroad Wharf.

With the completion of the last stretch of railroad from Wellileet in 1873, the 120-mile trip from Boston to Provincetown became the longest run on the Old Colony line. Two trains ran daily in each direction, the trip taking four hours and ten minutes. In addition, there were many special summer excursions to Provincetown and various amenities, such as Pullman parlor-car service on the 4:15 from Boston. The tracks in this section of town were removed in the late 1920s; all passenger service from Boston was discontinued in the late 1940s.

On the left, at 301 Commercial Street, is the store and dwelling of Aylmer F. Small, merchant tailor, dealer in gents’ furnishings, foreign and domestic woolens and trimmings. The striped barber pole be-longed to John W. Myrick, who rented his building from Mr. Small. At the right-hand corner building, formerly a post office, a sign points to the pool room run by Joseph S. Fisher. Small signs farther down Commercial Street in this 1902 view mark the locations of Zelotes Smith’s bakery (at 306) and Mrs. T. L. Chapman’s dining rooms across from the library.

In the foreground, coming from Railroad Wharf, is one of Provincetown’s horse-drawn “jiggers,” a flat cart with large wheels used for hauling. The name may have derived from the nautical term jigger, the lowest sail on a jiggermast, or possibly from the jolting movement of the cart. This area is still generally referred to by everyone in Provincetown as “the center of town” and is the dividing point between the East and West Ends.

This was from the book Old Provincetown in Early Photographs by Irma Ruckstuhl, 1987.

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