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Historical Materials

Historical Materials  »    »  Thacher Island

Thacher Island

In 1635 Anthony Thacher and his wife were the only survivors from a shipwreck off the island. As compensation for the loss of his four children and cousins, the General Court gave the island to Thacher. The island became known as "Thacher's Woe" and remained in the family for 80 years. In 1771 the Province of Massachusetts Bay Council passed a bill for the erection of a lighthouse on Thacher Island and purchased the island from the heirs of Anthony Thacher. The name seems to have been Thacher's Island in the nineteenth century, although currently is known as Thacher Island.

The name of the island is variably spelled with and without a second "t."

Related tables: Rockport, Mass. - Thacher Island Twin Lighthouses »

photo (historical)
Bass Rocks, showing Salt and Thatcher's Islands
Charles D. Brown, publisher

From Gloucester Picturesque, c.1900.

Also filed under: Salt Island »

map
1831 Mason Map
John Mason
1831
Lithograph
28.5 x 21 in.
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive

When Massachusetts decreed that each town be mapped, John Mason drew the map of Cape Ann in 1830. This drawing was sent to the Senefelder Lithographic Company of Boston (owned by William Pendleton) to be printed, and then sold in Gloucester by W.E.P. Rogers, whose Gloucester Telegraph of February 12, 1831 announced, "A few specimen copies of the map, uncolored, have reached the town" and that they cost $1.25. Perhaps this business arrangement between Pendleton and Rogers provided Lane with his introduction to Pendleton.

publication
1862 Cape Ann Advertiser 1.10.1862
1.10.1862
Newsprint
Cape Ann Advertiser
Collection of Fred and Stephanie Buck

"VISIT TO LANE'S STUDIO.

We called at the studio of this artist a few days ago, and found several new paintings had been added to his collection since our last visit. The first that arrested our attention was a view of Good Harbor Beach. . . .

A scene outside Eastern Point, during a fresh sou'wester, is full of life, and faithfully portrayed on the canvass. . . .

A fancy sketch, representing a storm scene, is also on exhibition. . . .

The Artist has now on his easel a large picture 36x60, just commenced, which we should judge would be his master-piece. It will be on exhibition when finished, and we forbear a description of it at this time. Mr. Lane, as a marine painter, ranks first in the country, and we are pleased to chronicle his success in producing such life-like pictures."

publication
1862 Cape Ann Advertiser 1.10.1862 (Thacher Island lighthouse)
1.10.1862
Newspaper clipping
Cape Ann Advertiser
Collection of Fred and Stephanie Buck

About a visit to the new lighthouse:

"VISIT TO THATCHER'S ISLAND.

On Wednesday last, the yacht Mary Bell, Capt. Merchant, made an excursion to Thatcher's Island. Availing ourselves of an invitation we joined the party and were soon on our way with a brisk breeze, which wafted us speedily to our destination. Arriving at the Island we landed and proceeded to examine the new lighthouses which have recently been erected here, and are now nearly ready for service. The towers are the most substantial that have been erected on the American coast, and reflect great credit on those who have had the superintendence of their construction. . . "

photo (historical)
Cape Ann (Thatcher Island) Light
1891
Photograph

From The Illustrated Coast Pilot with sailing directions. The Coast of New England from New York to Eastport, Maine including Bays and Harbors, published by N. L. Stebbins, Boston, Mass.

photo (historical)
Cape Ann Scenery: No. 215 Thatcher's Island
Hervey Friend, Publisher
c.1870
Stereograph card
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive
photo (historical)
Cape Ann Scenery: No. 60 Thatcher's Island Northern Light
John S. E. Rogers, Publisher
c.1870
Stereograph card
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive
photo (historical)
Cape Ann Scenery: No. 61 Thatcher's Island Southern Light
John S. E. Rogers, Publisher
c.1870
Stereograph card
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive
map
Locator map: Thacher Island
H. F. Walling
1851
44 x 34 in.
John Hanson, Publisher
Cape Ann Museum Library & Archive
map
U.S. Coast Survey Chart: Rockport Harbor
1882
Survey of the Coast of the United States, Washington, D.C.
Collection of Erik Ronnberg

Also filed under: Maps »

Citation: "Historical Materials." Fitz Henry Lane Online. Cape Ann Museum. http://fitzhenrylaneonline.org/historical_material/index.php?type=§ion=Thacher+Island (accessed July 23, 2017).
Please note that the information on this and all pages is periodically reviewed and subject to change.
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