A Town Named Sandwich

 Posted by at 12:54 am  Nick's Blog
Jul 182012

We spent yesterday visiting the Cape Cod town of Sandwich. How can you not like a small seaside town named sandwich? I mean, it’s a small town, it’s on the water, and it’s named after food! What more could you want in a town?

Actually, Sandwich, incorporated in 1639, was named after a town in England with the same name. Settled by European immigrants nearly 150 years before the American Revolution, Sandwich is the oldest town on Cape Cod and one of the oldest towns in the United States.

Our friends John and Chris Hallock are workamping at the Corps of Engineers Cape Cod Canal Visitor Center. Dug between 1909 and 1914, the Canal provides safe navigation for boats and ships so they can avoid the treacherous waters of the open ocean off Cape Cod.

The Visitor Center has displays on the history of the canal and its role in navigation, including the retired Coast Guard patrol boat Renier, a collection of nautical knots, and a video that tells the story of the canal.



It’s also a good place to watch boats and ships traveling up and down the canal. Visitors can sit on the rocking chairs on the porch, or on the grass, to watch the parade of vessels.

Rocking chairs

While we were there we were fortunate enough to see the Amistad pass by on the Canal. A replica of the La Amistad slave ship that was seized by its captive cargo in a revolt in 1839, the ship was headed for Nova Scotia. Unfortunately, she wasn’t under sail, which would have been an amazing sight to see, but it was still pretty awesome.

Amistad 5

After the Amistad passed, we spent some time visiting with John and Chris in their fifth wheel. Chris is the graphic artist who designed our Gypsy Journal logo, which we use on the front page of the paper and our T-shirts. We had not seen them in several years, and it was fun to have an hour so to spend with them before they had to go back to their duties.

John Chris Hallock

Our next stop was at the Sandwich Glass Museum, housed in the building that once was the Boston and Sandwich Glass Company. For much of the 1800s, Sandwich was a major glass-producing town, and several glass factories operated here.

Sandwich Glass Museum outside

The museum has a wonderful display of art glass, blown glass, pressed glass, fused glass, etched glass, and any other kind of glass you could ever want to see. The galleries hold decanters and other items dating back to the early 1800s that were made locally.

Colorful glass

We watched a young lady demonstrate the art of glassblowing, starting with heating the glass in a kiln at over 2300° and then working it into a decorative glass pumpkin. As she worked she explained the process, and when she was finished she answered questions from the audience.

Glass blower

In oven 

Stretching glass

By the time we left the museum it was after 5 PM and we were hungry. And if you’re on Cape Cod, how can you not have seafood? We drove back to a place called Seafood Sam’s, which has some good reviews. It was almost across the street from the Canal Visitor Center. The food was very good and plentiful, although I wasn’t impressed at all with the service. The self-serve soda machine was putting out flat drinks because they needed to recharge the carbonator, they had run out of ice, and the iced tea was just water, not tea. Myself and several other customers complained to the folks at the counter, but 20 minutes later they still hadn’t done anything. So I went up front to where they had a cooler with bottled drinks and brought two of them back to our table. I’m not sure what they were supposed to cost, but when I told one of the young ladies behind the counter what I was doing because I was tired of waiting for them to do nothing, she just shrugged. So the place gets a B+ for the food, and a D- for the service and employee attitude.Though I do have to acknowledge two young ladies doing a bang up job of bussing tables and managing the trash containers.

Of course, if you’re going to go to an island, you have to either take a ferry or cross a bridge. There are two bridges across the canal, one is high, and the other is even higher. Traffic was horrendous, which was probably a good thing because it kept me from noticing I was driving over a very high bridge! Somebody told me that some of the most aggressive drivers in the world are in this region, and I have to agree. If people aren’t changing lanes and cutting in front of you without signaling, they are tailgating you, or flying up on-ramps and into traffic without even a glance backward in their mirrors. I bet insurance rates here are really high!

Bridge traffic

We’re supposed to have scattered thunderstorms today, some of them with strong winds and heavy rain. If it looks like they are going to develop, we may just set tight here at home instead of venturing out. We’ll just see how the day develops.

Thought For The Day – Your friends love you anyway.

Register Now For Our Ohio Gypsy Gathering Rally

Check Out Nick’s E-books In Our E-Book Store

Nick Russell

World-Famous, New York Times Best Selling Author, and All-Around Nice Guy!

  9 Responses to “A Town Named Sandwich”

  1. A couple of blogs ago, you mentioned the fact that you follow a couple of other blogs. Can you tell us which ones they are? And thanks to your readers who told us where to find replacement hub caps. I really needed some but didnt’t know where to look
    – Dona Clayton.

  2. “Dug between 2009 and 2014” ?

  3. When we visited the Cape Cod Canal Visitor Center, it was just a few days’ shy of their opening for the season. Darn-we would have loved to have seen John and Chris – met them years ago at the Escapades.

    Those are awesome shots you took at the glass museum – looks like you tried to crawl into the oven to get the pix. The young lady was quite talented – we were all disappointed when she had to ‘recycle’ a piece because it wasn’t quite the way she wanted it.

    If you have time when you move to your next MA destination, drop us an email – it would be fun to get to meet in person.

    Lu & Larry here in Otis, MA

  4. What campground are you using there on the Cape? We’re passing through there next fall and are looking for where to stay. Does the ACE visitor center have sites?

    — jc&bev

  5. I thought you would eat a sandwich.

  6. Great pics and info! Been there but just passed thru on the way to the Cape. Yes, Mass. Has some of the highest insurance rates and most national carriers do not write there. The reason is for many years they 100% regulated rates that ALL insurance companies had to charge the exact same rates. Period. No compete. Very strange. That put some companies under and made others run for the hills. Registration is even higher than CA! Yes they have their own way of doing things. But its a beautiful state filled with history and wonderful people! My Dad was a native and I am a lot of extended family there. But I am a native Texan. Have fun!!

  7. They say here where we are in central NC that the bad drivers come from the north…no doubt some do, but NOT ALL…too many here have not one shred of an idea of what a blinker on a vehicle is for…75% do not use them. And drive just as you describe the ones above. And you can count on a great number either blabbing away on their cell phones or else texting…yep, going down the road texting. Hubby and I have often talked of how we wish we had something to point at these vehicles that would seize up the engine on the spot!! I was hit on highway 1 here in 2008 by a fully loaded MACK truck…will be seeing the chirorpractor the rest of my life, but at least I am mobile and doing ok considering. Still, no matter what kind of accident you are in, IT HURTS INSIDE when you get hit!! Makes you wonder if none of these terrible drivers have ever been hit before!! We passed 2 wrecks yesterday on the other highway, just a couple miles apart and one poor guy was strapped to a gurney on his way to the hospital and not looking good!! PEOPLE are totally insane!! And they worry about people with guns…yeah right…

  8. Greg, what’s 100 years among friends?

    Dona, here is a blog post I wrote a while back on some of the many other RV blogs I enjoy https://gypsyjournalrv.com/2011/05/15-rv-blogs-you-should-be-reading/

    Lu and Larry, will try to do so

    JC, We are at Gateway to Cape Cod in Rochester. The visitor center only has sites for their workampers.

    Art, maybe a fish sandwich?

  9. Go out to visit the tip of the Cape…P-Town
    Breakfast… Post Office Cafe
    Lunch… The Lobster Pot for their award winning N.E. clam chowder( A must ! )
    Lunch or dinner at Napi’s for good food and great looking dining area.
    Stop in Wellfleet at the docks to check out the incoming boats
    Visit the Coast Guard Museum in Chatham or Orleanes and take a look around.
    We have spent a lot of time out there and envy you right about now.Just a tad busy in July and Aug. though.

 Leave a Reply

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>



Notify me of followup comments via e-mail. You can also subscribe without commenting.