Alan Scherer Photographer

Posts Tagged ‘towns’

Our love for the ocean and it’s seas!

In boats, cape cod, memories, ocean, photography, thoughts on February 9, 2011 at 4:16 pm

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Boats and the ocean are beautiful and enjoyable to us all… Even if you have never dipped a toe in the ocean you are still drawn to it and the secrets it keeps.

I think we take for granted the amazing wonders that the sea provides us with and what lies beneath its waters too…

~Alan

The Immense Ocean
Imagine that you are an ant on Mount Everest. That’s about the size relationship of one human being to the ocean.
Everything about the ocean is immense — it has the tallest mountains in the world and the deepest valleys. It covers 72 percent of the Earth’s surface. That’s 139 million square miles or 139 with 19 zeros after it. And it’s not just wide. It’s deep — 12,460 feet deep on average. That’s 10 Empire State buildings stacked on top of each other!
Oceans Alive
Most scientists think life began in the ocean over 3 billion years ago. Today, the ocean contains an amazing array of life at every depth. Over 1 million known species of plants and animals live there, and scientists say there may be as many as 9 million species we haven’t discovered yet.
Marine animals come in all kinds of weird shapes, sizes, and colors; and they live in all kinds of different environments within the ocean. Theblue whale, the largest animal in the world, lives in the open ocean, along with millions of tiny drifting organisms calledplankton. In the tropical seas, silverygreat barracudaspursue colorful coral reef fish. Then there’s the deep sea — where it’s as dark as night and icy cold. At depths as great as 7,000 feet below the surface,tubewormslive in the most extreme environment in the world — hot sea vents. There, the water temperature changes from scalding hot to icy cold in the space of a few feet. No matter where you go in the ocean, you will always find life.

Gimme Energy
Life in the ocean depends on energy. No animal can move or grow without energy. Most ocean animals get their energy by eating plants or other animals. The connection between organisms based on the transfer of energy is called a food chain or a food web. Most food webs start with the conversion of sunlight into food through a process called photosynthesis. Photosynthesis is an important process that occurs at the surface of the ocean. But deep within the ocean, at hydrothermal vents, food chains are based on the conversion of chemical energy into food. This process is called chemosynthesis.
You’ve heard of “one world?” Well, technically, all the world’s oceans and seas are part of one continuous mass of seawater. But because the ocean is so big, humans have divided it up and named the different parts. There are five oceans and several dozen seas.* Seas are usually smaller than oceans and are partially enclosed by land. But otherwise, they’re exactly the same thing.
What’s the Difference Between an Ocean and a Sea?

Harwich, Ma.

In cape cod, memories, photography, thoughts, Uncategorized on February 7, 2011 at 2:42 pm

fishing boat on the cape

in for the night


I am from Cape Cod and still enjoy it but not as much as I truly would like, living in Watertown…
I grew up off of Queen anne rd. on a little dead-end street called Hillcrest Dr. #35 to be exact it was my Nana’s house and we lived there till I was 11 greatest years of my life just being able to enjoy being a kid.  The beaches in the summer, the ball fields in the spring, the snow in the winter and the smell of apple pies in the fall bring me back to yesteryear and the joy of it all…

The Town of Harwich is a quiet resort and agricultural community located on the south side of the Cape peninsula, with an extensive shoreline on Nantucket Sound. The year-round population is approximately 12,677 with a seasonal increase to 37,000. Harwich encompasses 20.93 square miles of land area with 10.9 miles of tidal shoreline. It is located in the 10th Congressional District, the Plymouth, Cape and Islands State Senatorial District. With miles of rivers and marshes and a coastline of sandy beaches dotted with the town’s four (4) picturesque harbors, Harwich has the unique ability to provide every form of aquatic activity available: quiet canoeing through the great marshes of the Herring River, water skiing on Long Pond, deep sea fishing out of the harbors, fly fishing in several of the smaller ponds, or swimming and sunbathing on the sandy Nantucket Sound and Pleasant Bay beaches.

Harwich has many different types of scenic landscapes, which include; almost eleven (11) miles of tidal shoreline along Nantucket Sound and Pleasant Bay; four (4) harbors, where Round Cove is the only naturally occurring one and Wychmere, Allens, and Saquatucket were once pond and/or marsh areas, dredged out to the Sound to provide protection for sea vessels; many bogs which are scattered throughout Harwich providing scenic enjoyment and agricultural production; twenty-two (22) freshwater ponds and two (2) reservoirs; two (2) scenic river corridors: Herring River and Muddy Creek; and over 320 acres of forests, water, and wetland in the Bells Neck Road/Salt Marsh/Reservoir area.

HISTORY
Harwich was settled around 1665, and incorporated in 1694. Its early economy included agriculture and maritime industries and its history has included boom and bust cycles from the earliest days of the community.

The upper Cape towns of Sandwich, Barnstable and Yarmouth were incorporated by 1639. The ‘Pamet Lands’, including the outer Cape towns of Orleans, Eastham, Wellfleet, Truro, and Provincetown were purchased in 1644 and incorporated as Nauset in 1646. The territory in between these towns included Indian land and part of the land known as ‘Purchases or Old Comers Reserve’. John Wing appears to have been the first settler in this new territory in 1658 in what is now Brewster. In 1667, Indian Chief Sachemus gave John Mecoy a thirty-six (36) acre parcel of land in what is now Harwich Center. Gershom Hall, the first white man to reside in Harwich, settled on this land in 1668. By 1694, there were enough settlers in the territory to support a minister, this being a requirement for application for incorporation by the General Court of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. This large tract of land, the largest in Barnstable County, remained intact until 1772 when the southeastern part was set off to Eastham.

In 1775, when Separatists and Baptists outnumbered Orthodox Congregationalists, Harwich burghers felt independent enough to refuse to support a minister with public tax monies and they continued refusing to do so for 18 years. The town showed religious diversity from the first, including residents who are Baptists, Methodists, Reformed Methodists (anti-episcopal), Wesleyans and Catholics, among others. In 1803, after a bitter struggle, the north parish and south parish separated into the Towns of Brewster and Harwich.

When the whaling industry collapsed with the discovery of oil, the community’s emphasis shifted to cod fishing. By 1802, 15 to 20 ships were shore fishing and another four ships were cod fishing in Newfoundland and Labrador, and by 1851, there were 48 ships employing 577 men and bringing in thousands of tons of cod and mackerel. The eventual decline of the fishing industry in Harwich by the latter part of the 19th century was caused by increases in the size of ships which eventually outstripped the shallow port’s ability to house them. Residents turned to the development of cranberry bogs and resorts for summer visitors, working side-by-side with Portuguese immigrants. The first resort hotel opened in 1880 and both the cranberry and the tourist industries remain substantial parts of Harwich’s economy in the present.

For more information about the history of Harwich, please visit the Harwich Historical Society at Brooks Academy Museum.

the cape fishing boats

peaceful