1940s: Classic New England summers at Cape Cod's Provincetown


Nestled on the far northern tip of Cape Cod, Provincetown, Massachusetts is a tiny resort town which swells from 3,000 to 60,000 residents during the summer months.

Its deep harbor provided shelter for the Mayflower in 1620 and was the site of the Mayflower Compact's signing.

After the American Revolution, the town grew with the whaling and fishing industries and became home to a sizable community of Portuguese seamen and their families.

By the turn of the 20th century, Provincetown had become a popular summer destination, with thousands of tourists taking day trips from Boston by car and boat.

In the summers of 1937 and 1940, Farm Security Administration photographer Edwin Rosskam visited the town, walking its handful of quaint thoroughfares and documenting the residents, fishermen, souvenir shoppers and beachgoers.