Brant Rock - Green Harbor - Ocean Bluff

...Welcome to Brant Rock, Green Harbor and Ocean Bluff in beautiful South Coastal Marshfield...... A mostly nostalgic look at three seacoast villages.....ENJOY YOUR VISIT!... is a non-profit venture that nostaligically celebrates the way things were "back in the day". Brant Rock, Ocean Bluff and Green Harbor are three sleepy seaside villages on barrier beaches that bloomed into bustling vacation spots for the summer folk throughout much of the earlier part of the twentieth century complete with bowling alley, movie theater and many fine restaurants. The advent of the railroad brought many visitors to the area. Eventually, with the proliferation of cars and the opening of Rt. 3 in 1963, these villages morphed into bedroom commuter communities with many of the summer cottages winterized and becoming year-round homes. The building of the seawalls prevented much of the flooding in the esplanade section of Brant Rock and the buidling of Dyke Road in the 1890s made transportation much easier so these villages were no longer the "end of he line". As vacationers and daytrippers came to area less many of the businesses that catered to them were lost. Eli's Linen Store burned in 1960. Estes Cany kitchen burned in 1971. The movie theater and bowling alley burned in 1973 and Charlie's Clam Shack closed in 1970. The great Ocean Bluff fire of 1941 changed the landscape forever. The last train to Green Harbor, at Webster's Place Station, crossed the North River Bridge in 1939. Scroll through the image gallery (try the slide show feature) to view images of many of these events and establishments. Please add your memories of a time gone by. You may comment on each of the photos in the gallery and are welcome to do so! Enjoy your visit!

1893 U.S. Geological Survey Topographical Map
-before the building of the dike road-

IN OUR PARENT'S TIME - by Bob Cheeseman

Hotels were built in the south part of town; Churchill Hotel 1866 – 1909, Brant Rock House 1874 – 1938, Ocean House 1875 – 1973, Fairview Hotel 1874 – 1998, Atlantic House 1789 - ?, Peace Haven Hotel & Annex 1903 - 1940
1867-1939 Railroad serves town of Marshfield - Stations at Green Harbor, Marshfield Center and Duxbury. 1871 Railroad Duxbury & Cohasset extended service to; Littltown (Sea View)- 53-Station St. So. Marshfield Center- town parking lot. Webster’s Place- North side of Careswell St. Near the Duxbury line.

Green Harbor Village & Green Harbor Beach started being developed, Green Harbor Park started in 1947.

1872 Dyke Road Built - improved in 1879)...connecting Green Harbor to Brant Rock.

6-4-1878 Post Office (Brant Rock) established.
1879 Hotel- Atlantic house

1880 Sea Wall- in pictures show as wooden sea walls at Brant Rock and Ocean Bluff.

5-24-1886 Post Office (Green Harbor) established.

1892 Bridge, there was no bridge before this date, joining Humarock.
1893 US Life Station built on Ocean St.
1894 Brant Rock Fish Market, Charlie Phillips 1894 – 1960, Hank Dunbar 1960 - present

1895 Union Chapel- Brant Rock was built

1899 Sea Walls " Jetties " were built in Green Harbor

Marshfield 1800
By: Robert F Cheeseman (781) 837-3709
June 23, 1999
Revised: December 31, 2000

1900 Ways
Abington Village was Built by Bradley Brant
(Shawmut Ave to St. Ann’s Church).

Green Harbor Village - (86) Houses, (3) Hotels, Webster Hotel (Carsewell St.), Hotel Johnston (north side of Beach St near Careswell St.), Riverside Inn (old Sears building end of Landing Rd.) Also Green Harbor Beach - (73) houses (1) Hotel, Winslow House near (Beach St. & Careswell St) Burned 1940

Wooden Water Tank (50,000 gals.) Hancock St, part of the Bradley Brant mineral spring and pumping station.
1900 Street Lights were installed in Brant Rock.
1900-1971 Estes Candy Kitchen (Ocean St.) opened., burned down on?
1900-1907 S. G. Capen Store - Ocean St at Ocean Bluff.

Hotel - Peace Haven Hotel & Annex 1903 – 1940, Building taken down to build houses in that area.
1903 South River Street Cranberry Bogs where built.

1905 - 1915
Professor Reginald Fessenden makes the World First Radio Voice Broadcast (1906) at Brant Rock-Part of Marshfield,Ma.

1907 Ways Webster Park (Number Roads area) builders Bradley Brant (Marshfield), John Foster (Hanson), Hoarse Maglathlin (Kingston) and in 1918 H.S. Kelsey. Webster Park House Lots, Water front $250.00, Row back from the ocean 175.00, $150.00, $100.00 Rest of the lots were #1.00, Houses cost $1,600.00. In 1929 H.S. Kelsey set aside 10 water front lots for the use of the neighborhood between 3rd and 5 th. Rd.

1913 Post Office - (Ocean Bluff) established 7-14

1915 - US Coast Guard took over the US Life Saving Station, on Ocean St. (built in 1893), Station closed in 1947, and was taken down by the Town in 1967.

1919 - Fire/ Water Districts, Article 38 Sewer Wagon for the restricted areas of zoning - for Green Harbor, Brant Rock, Ocean Bluff. The rest of the Town was Zoned Un-Restricted areas.

1920 Green Harbor Park - 10,000 square foot lots selling for $25.00 per lot.

1922 5-28 Marshfield County Club started in 1919 on the Thomas Farm in Ocean Bluff. The land was purchased in 1921,1929, and more land was purchased in 1930. The 2nd. nine holes were completed in 1976. The Club House burned down, and a new club house was built in 1978.

Brant Rock (wooden 50,000 gal. tank) Bradley Bryant - Brant Rock Water Co., fed from a Mineral spring on Dyke Road serviced 1,000 homes. Water Tank- Tower Avenue
1923 - 1941
Church- Saint Ann’s, Ocean Bluff Burned down fire of 1941. Mass was held in the Fieldston Ball room in the summer months, and was held in the Fire station in the winter months. In 1946 - there was a temporary Church moved there from Framingham it was an old Army Chapel, and in 1957 a New church was built.

1925-1941 Fieldston on the Atlantic ballroom was opened

1927 - Ocean St widening of Ocean St, acts of 1927, Chapter 249, buildings on the Green Harbor side of Ocean St had to be moved back into the marshlands.

1927 4-8 Towns first public Water System, Article 29., Companies as follows; 1.) Brant Rock Water Co, (Bradley Bryant serviced the Brant Rock area.
2. George H. Thomas water system (serviced the Brant Rock area)
3.) Fieldston Water Co. (Joseph Spang serviced the Fieldston area. )
4.) Cedar Hill System (Howard Baker serviced the Green Harbor area)
5.) Humarock Beach Water Co. (also known as Crosby Water Co serviced the Seaview and Humarock beach areas for the Town of Scituate) All the above companies were used until 1946.

1927 - Ocean Breeze Bar & Grill (Arthur Tradd) esplanade, Venus two, 1975 Nick Drosopoulos
1928 Sandy’s Restaurant- Dyke Rd.
1928 3-23Bounds between Marshfield and Scituate established.
1928 Haddad’s Ocean Street Cafe started on the splanade.

1929 Sunrise Beach Association was established for forty years until 1967.

1929 - Population of Brant Rock, Ocean Bluff and Green Harbor were 329 houses, 4 hotels, and there were 61 fishermen / lobstermen year round.
1929 Comfort Station was built in Brant Rock.

1930 - Fife’s Grocery & Meat Market (Ocean St.) next to the Ocean Cafe. - also known as Whitman Market.1930 First National Store - middle of the esplanade
1930-1950 Eli’s Linen Store, Brant Rock, burned down in 1960

1930 - 1958 Police Station was the old Brant Rock School House on Dyke Rd

1931 Sea Walls "Jetties " were re-built in Green Harbor (first built in 1899)
Sea Walls built (Brant Rock to Fieldston) $200,000.00 1/6th. Paid by abutters (15.00) per foot of and 1/6th. Paid by town 1/6th. Paid by county And balance paid by the state Built by the (WPA) workers progress administration Hourly wages were .35 cents per hour. Waterfront owners built their own stairs to the beach with all other homes paying $10.00 each toward the expense.

1938 - 1952 - Bus Service of Marshfield Green Harbor, Brant Rock, Marshfield to the railroad station at Greenbush (Scituate)

1939 - Last train over the North River from Boston.

1940 Band Concerts were held on the Esplanade
1940 - 1970 Charlie’s Clam Snack Bar - Brant Rock.
Beacon Novelty Shop (Mrs. Cassett) Esplanade and Low Rd. by Tingley’s Restaurant.
1940 Horton’s Bakery open in Brant Rock.

April 21,1941- The Great Fire of the Ocean Bluff section of Marshfield, which destroyed in three hours claiming (456) houses, (96) garages, (12) stores, (2) hotels, (1) casino, (1) post office, and (1) church, (30) families were left homeless and in most cases escaping, only with the clothes on their backs. This brought forward for the first time better sub-division of plates of land. Because of the war, rebuilding did not really get started until 1946.

1941 Sea Walls - " Jetties " were built of Hewitt’s Point

1942 - Tower 70 feet Brant Rock built for WW- II, it was 8 stories high, 14 feet square, with 12 " reinforced walls. 1999 town is given the property, except the Tower (only) and is still going to be operated by the Coast Guard in Boston.

1945-1953 Bud’s Place opens

1945 - Lobster Claw Restaurant owned by Phillips esplanade Breakers 1986 owned by Kang Yu ? Lobster Tail ? sold to?

1945 - 1972
Mommy's Restaurant ( Harry & Helen Tigley ),1972 - 1975 Rita Jenkins owned Mommy's, 1975 - 1978 Arthur & Pats owned and ran Mummies in 1978 they changed the name to Arthur & Pat’s estaurant.

1946 - Brant Rock acres was built.

1947 Green Harbor Park started being developed

1947 - Sea Walls " Jetties " built between Webster Ave and the old Life Station.
1952 - Rexham Town Beach opened, purchased from the Sea River Association - see 1950
1952 Brant Rock Supermarket- Dyke Rd.
1952 Blackman’s Trailer Park opened on Green Harbor Point

1956 Life Guards- established at Town Beaches.
1956 Town Pier & Bulkhead was started
1956 Green Harbor Tidal Basin started.
1957 Green Harbor Marina- opened Dyke Rd. 1962 sold to Lovell & White 1986 sold to Connolly

1959 - School- New High School built (Furnace Brook) replaces the old school at Main St. this school was planed in 1957 $1,685,000

1960 Brant Rock Fish Market (Hank Dunbar)- Ocean St.
1960 Green Harbor Yacht Club opened

1962 - Coast Guard Station purchased article # 48 $2,000.00 (Brant Rock) 1893 - 1915 was used as a Life Boat Station 1915 - 1947 was used as a Coast Guard Station. The town tore down the building in (1976).

1963 - Route 3-Southeast Expressway opened joining the Expressway in Hanover to Kingston

1965 - Green Harbor Golf Club open -Manual Francis bought the land in 1965 (165) acres, front nine was opened, and in 1977 the back nine holes were opened.

1989 Harbor Park and Parking Lot built. (Brant Rock) Way Town Pier Rd
1989 Park built on the old Brant Rock Dump

1994 Humarock built sand dunes to help the area dunes cost $650,000.

1998 Fire- Fairview Inn burns down, hopes to rebuild in the year of 2000.
11/2000 The Fairview Inn 133 Ocean Street has started to be re-building with
the foundation already has been completed and hopes to open in the summer of
12-23-01 This is the 101st anniversary of the very first time that voice was
conveyed by radio wave. It was the prelude to the world's first radio
broadcast, which took place on Christmas Eve from Brant Rock in 1906...

St. Anne's in Ocean Bluff was built in 1923 as there were nearly 100 houses and most of the residents were Catholic. In the 1920s there was an influx of Irish Catholics from Boston and the South Shore prompting many to call this area the "Irish Riviera" In March of 2014 WCVB ranked Brant Rock/Ocean Bluff with 41.2% Irish and Green Harbor/
Cedarcrest with 43.1 beaten only by White Island Shores in Plymouth with 49% having kissed the Blarney Stone!

link to - EARLY HOTELS and GUESTHOUSES - of a bygone era

Brant Rock Aerial by Chris McDonald


Early Map of the Area - Note the footpath to Webster's Dock
Daniel Webster died on October 24, 1852 at his home in
Marshfield, Massachusetts, after falling from his horse and suffering a crushing blow to the head, complicated by cirrhosis of the liver, which resulted in a cerebral hemorrhage. He is buried in the "Old Winslow Burial Ground" section of the Winslow Cemetery, in Marshfield. Daniel Webster (January 18, 1782 – October 24, 1852) was a leading American senator from Massachusetts during the period leading up to the Civil War. He was also the 14th and 19th United States Secretary of State. His estate is located off of Webster Street.
CLICK HERE to learn more about DANIEL WEBSTER - The Gentleman Farmer of Marshfield 

Yes, Dan’l Webster’s dead-or, at least, they buried him. But every time there’s a thunder storm around Marshfield, they say you can hear his rolling voice in the hollows of the sky. And they say that if you go to his grave and speak loud and clear, “Dan’l Webster-Dan’l Webster!” the ground’ll begin to shiver and the trees begin to shake. And after a while you’ll hear a deep voice saying, “Neighbor, how stands the Union?” Then you better answer the Union stands as she stood, rock-bottomed and copper sheathed, one and indivisible, or he’s liable to rear right out of the ground.


References, Resources and Further Reading
Descendents of William, of Plymouth and Marshfield, MA - Benjamin Shurtleff - 1912 
History of Marshfield - Lysander Salmon Richards - Memorial Press - Plymouth, MA 1901-1905
Finding the Old Coast Road; Getting Around in Plymouth County - Edwin S. Dethlefson - Project Lighthouse - Marshfield, MA - 1969
Marshfield - The Autobiography of a Pilgrim Town - Joseph C. Hagar - Marshfiled Tercentenary Committee - 1956 (original printing 1940)
"Warnings Ignored! The Story of the Portland Gale - November, 1898" - By Fred Freitas and Dave Ball - November 1995 - No Publisher - pp. 83-85. 
"MARSHFIELD - A Town of Villages 1640-1990"  Cynthia Hagar-Krusell and Betty Magoum-Bates - Historical Research Associates Marshfield Hills, MA - 1990 - page 62.  
 Marshfield   70 degrees – 40’W: 42 degrees –5’N   The Autobiography of a Pilgrim Town – Marshfield Tercentenary Committee, 1940 reprinted 1977, Rapid Service Press, Inc


link to page - HOTELS and GUESTHOUSES

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