West Beach, circa 1920 V. Blanden/©Fredrik D. Bodin
The West Beach photograph evokes fond childhood memories from local visitors to the gallery. The beach, on Route 127 in Beverly Farms, is privately owned, although open to the public for nine months during the off-season. It runs about a mile from Prides Crossing through Beverly Farms to Beverly proper. It has been administered by the West Beach Corporation since 1852, after being bequeathed to the residents of Beverly Farms and Prides Crossing by John West, who acquired it in 1666. The pier was originally built for docking boats, later evolving into a popular place for jumping into the water and swimming. The sign at the pier’s entrance reads: “This Pier for the Sole use of the Members of the West Beach Corporation and Subscribers.” Great Misery Island, pictured in the distance, and now owned by the Trustees of Reservations , had structures such as the Governor’s Cottage, the Casino hotel, and Bleak House, complete with sea plane hanger. The pier at West Beach was destroyed in the blizzard of 1978, and now has only a few pilings remaining. This beautiful beach was painted by Gloucester’s Fitz Henry Lane 1855.
Printed from the original 5×7 inch negative in my darkroom. Image # FS-001
Fredrik D. Bodin
Bodin Historic Photo
82 Main Street