A Life Revealed

Cape Cod Life Through her art, Hella Bailin revealed some of the best and worst moments of her life. From the worst—her parents were killed in a concentration camp during the Holocaust—to joyful world travels, Bailin created her art as a way to embrace cultures, capture the essential goodness of people, and accept and express her extraordinary sorrow and loss. Read more…

The Niantic Sails Again

For as long as I can remember, a faded painting of my great great grandfather’s ship, the Niantic, hung in the parlor of our West Tisbury home. It had hung in our island house for 150 years. Every once in a while, we’d dust it or wipe off spider droppings.

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Seeing the Big Picture

Early Summer 2011

In a darkened room, wearing a surgical mask and gloves, Falmouth’s Ian Primrose inspects a subject lying on a table with a portable ultraviolet light. Under the UV fluorescence, he can see blotches.

Primrose is not a doctor, but rather a master of alchemy, mystery, and craftsmanship. He is a professional art restorer and conserv- ator. The UV light reveals paint strokes of an earlier restoration.

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Built with Love

Eric Roth

Like Russian nesting dolls, each figure tucked into the next, almost everything in the Osterville home of custom-builder E.J. Jaxtimer is a story within a story. Beyond every inch of the polished wood floors and airy rooms is an ambience that reflects touching stories of E.J., his wife, Terry, their three sons, and the extended family. Even the furnishings—from pieces the couple restored when they were young newlyweds to mementos, art, and handmade crafts—represent pages of family history. Read more…

Happy New Year from Cape Cod Life!

Love N Happiness | The Little Store in Provincetown, Cape Cod

The Little Store in Provincetown, Cape Cod

May your 2011 be filled with all the good things in life!

Collected Christmas

The small and unassuming exterior might lead one to think that the Samuel Fessenden House is just another historical home. But once inside the circa 1840 house on Main Street in Sandwich, a treasure trove of antiques and wonderful collections abound—and come Christmas, those treasures are on full display. Read more…

Architecture Through the Ages

Home Winter 2010 From Cape Cod’s earliest “half houses” to contemporary mansions, A History Through Houses: Cape Cod’s Varied Residential Architecture ($19.99) provides a glimpse into our region’s rich architectural heritage. Inspired by her fascination for Cape Cod’s historic architecture, author and native Cape Codder Jaci Conry guides the reader through this unique architectural world. Conry details the first homes that coined the “Cape Cod” style, explores Victorian and Gothic Revival homes, and gives fascinating details of two of the Cape’s first mansions: Highfield Hall in Falmouth and Fieldstone Hall, now part of Brewster’s Ocean Edge Resort. She also showcases today’s grand mansions and delves into Cape designs by world-renowned architects. Illustrated with black and white current and vintage photography, the book is a valuable resource for homeowners, historians, and students of the Cape’s quintessentially American architecture.

For more information, go to or call (843) 577-5971.

Gifts Without Season

Life December 2010 Cape Cod has more than 1,000 nonprofit organizations. Add to that number the nonprofit groups located on the islands and just over the bridges, and you have an enormous cadre of workers – many of them volunteers – who are filling gaps in critical areas that include affordable housing, the environment, hunger, and healthcare. Below are seven of these groups, a small sampling but enough to demonstrate the great work that local nonprofits are accomplishing. Now, at the threshold of the holiday season, is a perfect time to show your support for these charities and your other favorite causes. Read more…

For the Creatures of the Earth

Bourne Historical Society

“Let us first, last, and all the time keep in mind that the Baxendale Memorial Foundation is a sacred trust. The island is the resting place of the Baxendales and failure to live up to the desires of the Baxendales, to divert it to cross purposes, would be desecration of a tomb.” Animal Rescue League of Boston publication ~1944

When Thomas A. Baxendale and his wife purchased Amrita Island in the late 1890s, they must have envisioned erecting their own little principality. Crossing the stone-pillared bridge to the island, one half expects to find a medieval fortress on the other side. The ivy-covered towers more closely resemble the entrance to an English castle than the gateway to an island on Buzzards Bay in Cataumet. The ivy hides inscriptions that allude to the island’s history. At the first pillar on the left of the bridge, a panel reads “Amrita Island, 1893” and the name “Baxendale,” while the right-side pillar bears a carving of a great blue heron and the declaration, “Safe from Snares.” The Baxendales created their own version of a kingdom at the turn of the century, but their shared love for wildlife meant that the island was, and hopefully always will be, a safe domain for the area’s birds and animals. Read more…

Gripping Gunning

Life December 2010 Cape Cod native Sally Gunning’s latest work of historical fiction, The Rebellion of Jane Clark, is a gripping fireside read. The story begins in Satucket, today known as Brewster. Jane Clark, the daughter of a hot-tempered tanner, finds herself unwillingly betrothed to Phinneas Paine. Upon her refusal to marry, Jane’s father exiles her to Boston. There, Jane meets some of the American Revolution’s key figures as tensions between the patriots and loyalists reach a boiling point. After witnessing the Boston Massacre, Jane must make the most difficult decision of her life. Gunning’s elegant writing coupled with her mastery of colonial dialogue paints a riveting picture of pre-Revolutionary Cape Cod and Boston. Visit to read an excerpt and take a virtual tour of Satucket!

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