The rich history of Chatham comes alive in this home… See for yourself!
As with all Patrick Ahearn projects, the Pleasant Bay Overlook begins with a story. Having designed over 200 homes and buildings in Edgartown alone, Ahearn and his team specialize in “historically motivated” architecture and interior design. Within this unique design philosophy, his projects include historic restorations and the creation of new buildings. The true wizardry of his work, however, is that, as he says, “People can’t tell our antique renovations from new construction; you can’t tell a 300-year-old house from one that we built five years ago.” In order to accomplish the goals of these projects, Ahearn and his team turn to historical narrative; design decisions come about through an understanding of the ways that a home organically develops and takes on character over the years, the ways that it evolves to meet the needs of its inhabitants. The story of the Pleasant Bay Overlook also reflects some of the history of Chatham, and it goes something like this:
In 1656, William Nickerson purchased a parcel of Monomoyick land from its tribal sachem, Mattaquason, for a shallop, cloth, several kettles, axes, knives and wampum. The town was originally called Monomoit, but upon official incorporation into Plymouth Colony in 1712, the name was changed to Chatham. Soon thereafter, Nickerson’s grandnephew Thomas arrived from England and settled on the shores of Pleasant Bay, on a point that would later become known as Nickerson’s Neck. Here, he floated two small houses by barge across the bay. One would serve as the family’s primary residence, where Thomas lived with his wife Ada and their first five children, while the other would shelter their fishing shallop through the bitterest of winter months and double as a sail loft. Nickerson faced both structures south-easterly for maximum exposure to the sun. In addition, he and his sons constructed a shack close to the beach, which they used for shellfishing. Thomas stored the various tools and rakes necessary for oystering, clamming and scalloping inside; he also created a work area where he sorted his catch for market. As the family grew to nine children, the eldest son, Randall, moved into the sail loft and renovated it into a small home for his own family.
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