Friday Flashback #311

“06880” has published some quite interesting back-in-the-day Compo Beach photos.

But this one is truly remarkable.

Click on or hover over to enlarge.

Posted first to social media by Paul Ehrismann, this 1912 photo shows:

  • One set of bathhouses, before more were added. (They were torn down in the 1960s).
  • The 2-story pavilion behind it. As noted last month, there was dining on the top floor. When the structure was damaged in a storm, the roof was salvaged. It now covers the open-air pavilion between the playground and volleyball courts.
  • A long ramp leading down to the water. It was needed, because …
  • … the beach itself was filled with rocks and grass. Rocks remained through the 1950s.
  • The seawall along Soundview Drive was much higher than today. More than a century of storms has added several feet to the beach.
  • As for Soundview itself, this scene predates the construction of most beach houses. They were built — sometime after 1912 — as summer cottages. Winterization came later. Still, for many years, they were modest homes. Today — well, you check on Zillow.

(Compo Beach has changed. “06880” has not. We’ve always been reader-supported. Please click here to help.)

8 responses to “Friday Flashback #311

  1. I look at that and know that is the way Compo was when my grandparents spent time there. My mother was born in 1917 so it had built up a bit for her generation. Them myself for the Chubb Lane era and now. Fun to look at. Thanks for that one!

    • Jack Backiel

      Diane, Was your mother born in Westport? My father was born in the Old Road farmhouse in 1918. What was her last name? In 1917, there were probably less than 3,000 in Westport and everyone knew everyone else in town.

  2. Peter Barlow

    It’s hard to tell just where that flag is. It looks like it’s coming out of the pavilion roof but that would make it hard to raise and lower. Most likely it’s beyond the pavilion – that makes it quite a large American flag!

  3. Jack Whittle

    I have postcards of when the hodgepodge of bath houses (really little shanties) were there. Compo (sometimes spelled “Campo” on old postals, as they called them) has always been the the #1 postcard topic . . .

  4. Diane Silfen

    Jack. My mother was Elise Barnes she was born and spent her entire life in the family home on Treadwell Ave. She married Gerry Haehl. And myself and my brother and sister grew up in the same house. Then my children grew up a few houses up the hill on Treadwell. Great place to grow up

    • Jack Whittle

      Diane – I share your fondness for Westport, it was a great place to grow up!

  5. Jack Backiel

    Thanks for responding, Diane. Not very many people can tell a story like you just did!