One hundred and forty-five years ago, the toughest crewman aboard the Holmes Hole whaling ship America attacked the mate with a knife. But this confrontation led to an even more shocking incident, as the crewman revealed that he was a she.

By Tom Dunlop


Edward Trotter Wesley Junior breezed into Harlem in May of 1954, just days after the Supreme Court outlawed racial segregation in public schools, a landmark decision that Eddie was certain must conceal some sort of dirty trick. He possessed a degree from Amherst, a couple of undistinguished years of graduate work at Brown, a handful of social connections through his mother, and a coveted job on the Amsterdam News, although he quit in disgust three months after starting.

By Stephen L. Carter


In the 1950s and ’60s, Chappaquiddick was considered the backyard of Edgartown. Not many people had heard of it – before Kennedy – and the summer population was small, including a few extended families. My family spent summers here, along with about fifty relatives in seven or eight houses scattered across the island. People knew each other, and most kids could roam wherever they wanted as long as they came home at the end of the day.

By Margaret Knight


There are sandcastles and then there are trophy sandcastles. You know, the kind next to you that people ogle and applaud as they’re being built, totally ignoring the one you’re building and your pathetic attempts to get a little reed to stand up on a crumbling turret. Take heart. Great sandcastle builders are made, not born, and here are some tips to get your property values up.

By Geoff Currier


The Clintons? The Obamas? Or is this island big enough for both families to vacation here? Several months ago, when it looked like the shark from Jaws was circling the Democratic Party, I would have said “no way.”

By Kate Feiffer


Out of more than twenty-seven thousand entries, this photograph of the Island Theatre on Circuit Avenue in Oak Bluffs won second place in National Geographic Traveler’s nineteenth annual photo contest. The photographer, Bob Gates, is a Syracuse University professor who rents a house (known as Rainbow House) near Zack’s Cliffs in Aquinnah for a week every summer.

By Linda Black


“Can you give me the address of the Vineyard Playhouse?” “Oh, just drive up Main Street, turn left onto Church–” “No, please don’t give me the directions. Just give me the street address.” “But it’s really easy to find. All you have to do is–” “No, no, no! All I want is the address.”

By Shelley Christiansen


Elsie Nunes and her family bought a summer home on the Island in 1970, and she moved here year-round when she retired in 1986.

By Joyce Wagner