Martha’s Vineyard – gingerbread cottages

Recently, we spent the day on Martha’s Vineyard, an island off the coast of Massachusetts made famous by its early settlement and long history, its wonderful beaches, and for its long being the playground of the rich and famous. (For example, President Obama and his family were vacationing there on the day that we visited. And no, surprisingly, we were not invited for tea; no doubt he was not informed until too late of our presence. His loss, says I.)

The entire series of photographs comprise five postings: 1) gingerbread cottages, 2) villages, 3) beaches, 4) by the water, and, 5) Gay Head point. The ‘Like’ button is only on the first set; that way you are free to enjoy the pictures at your leisure but will not need to keep coming back to ‘like’ them one over the other.

Gingerbread Cottages

The main village of Martha’s Vineyard is Oak Bluffs. In the mid-1800s there began a tradition of a religious camp ‘revival’ meeting being held there each summer. Eventually the large revival tent was replaced by an open air meeting hall, known today as the Tabernacle (see the first picture). The smaller lots surrounding the big revival tent were where individual families pitched their smaller tents; these small, roped-off tent lots were, in their turn, replaced by tiny cottages as the families returned year after year. Over time, these cottages became both larger and more ornate with a distinctive style that came to be referred to as gingerbread cottages.

Before viewing the photographs, I would also like to invite you to visit the poetry blog, the Book of Pain. As always, special thanks to my dearest Lyn, She Of Great Taste In All Things But Men, who does most of the photo selection. Thank you for dropping by the Book of Bokeh.
















All photographs and comments ©2014 by John Etheridge with all rights reserved; not to be used without the expressed written permission of the copyright owner.


35 thoughts on “Martha’s Vineyard – gingerbread cottages

    • The easy cost has many great summer holiday places of great natural beauty. Martha’s Vineyard is only one of many places that one can visit. The interesting thing is how dead and empty they are in winter. I need to go back and document then in the cold winter.

    • You and me both! And in that place. It’s busy in the summer when it’s nice but the winters can be quite arduous. But I still would live there. Thank you so very much for dropping by the Book of Bokeh!

        • Say what?! OK, so…another spot to visit on the very long bucket list. Gee, thanks! 🙂

          All joking aside, whenever I get to Chicago my heart is centered on going to the Baha’i temple in Wilmette. It is stunningly beautiful!! Have you ever been there?

          • It looks awesome ! I’ve never been there ! I only spent a few days in Chicago last summer, but I stayed mainly in the busy city center for the architecture and the botanical gardens. If I have time, one day, I’ll probably publish about that on my blog as well.

    • John, thank you very much, you are very kind and I appreciate you taking the time to be so generous with your comment.

      On the other hand, generally all I have to do is press the button. Mr. Canon does all the rest of the hard work! 🙂

    • Us too! Funny enough, the gingerbread cottages was the first thing we did on the island and to be honest, I do not think there was anything thereafter that was more unique or more interesting. Fun and enjoyable, yes, but not more beautiful.

      There was just one issue with the entire place, to be honest. There was not one really good cup of coffee (Starbucks, where are you when I need you?!) to be had anywhere. Many high end cafes, none worth a return visit to. Truth! 🙂

        • I know! You think that the last photo would have been it, too! I think it was called the “Behind the Bookstore” café and was in Edgartown. It was a gorgeous spot, what with the two layered canvas awnings and breezy passageway, but to be honest, my usual order (two decaf espresso shots in a decaf coffee) was 1) weak (?!?) and 2) sour. Good coffee when it is strong is delicious; bad coffee when it is strong is obnoxious. The sandwich was bland too, as I recall.

          This is an interesting subject. My pet theory is that the more rich people there are around, the better the building gets but the worse the food and drink gets. When we were in west Connecticut for the Campbell Falls pictures we found the most wonderful little café in a small little town of 50 people in just about Nowhere, USA. A coincidence? I think not…

          Starbucks may be chain, but it’s at least run by people who like to drink good coffee.

          (By now I bet you have figured out that I am a coffee fanatic, huh?! Yup. That’s me.)

          • Awww…I noticed that…an obsession for cafe…a connoisseur in effect…that’s good…I love tea the same way you do coffee❤ and I agree with your theory …some of the best tea I’ve had is in little tea shops along the highway…they make it more zeal and passion than the named cafe shops 😀

    • All such places like Martha’s Vineyard, Nantucket Island, Block Island, Newport, Hyannis Port…they can all too easily fall into being a tourist trap. The gingerbread cottages really are a unique claim to fame. They are still there, still owned mostly by descendants of the original owners, still clinging to an idea that is now very old, still surrounding a building used for revival meetings. They are a fresh breath of uniqueness in a world that is becoming, I fear, too homogeneous. We loved them!

      The church in the ‘villages’ set, is, by the way, on the same green and just by the Tabernacle, although I am not sure if they are related or not.

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