Tag Archives: Avery Place

Friday Flashback #326

The year was 1803. Thomas Jefferson was in the White House. The Louisiana Purchase doubled the size of the United States.

And — nearly 180 years ago — Westport did not even have a legitimate Main Street.

The other day, Morley Boyd and Wendy Crowther were in the Westport Library, researching our town’s stone bridges. They stumbled on a remarkable map — one that even they, despite their years as diligent historians, had never seen.

They note that while Elm Street and Avery Place are connected close to the river, Main Street is still just a “proposed road” (outlined with dashes, left side of the map).

Myrtle Avenue was part of the “King’s Highway.” There were just a scattering of houses throughout the area.

The forerunner of what later became the Westport Hotel — at the corner of State Street (Post Road) and Main Street — was called the Nichols Hotel.

That makes sense. The village on the map was still “Saugatuck.” It would not become “Westport” until 1835.

That’s another 32 years, 4 presidents, and 7 states admitted to the union later.

(“06880” has been around far fewer years than Westport. But since our founding in 2009, we’ve never missed a day of posting. Please click here to help us continue our work. Thank you!)

Pic Of The Day #1786

Contemporary art on Avery Place (Photo/Tracy Porosoff)

Photo Challenge #372

Westport is not really a gun town.

And the last place you’d expect to see thousands of spent shells is by Main Street.

But there on Avery Place — just a few yards from the Westport Museum for History & Culture — sits a colorful work of art.

Look closely, and you’ll see it’s made from thousands of shotgun shells. (Click here for the photo.)

I have no idea why. Nor did any readers who recognized it as last week’s Photo Challenge.

Fred Cantor, Jane Daily, Andrew Colabella and Lynn Untermeyer Miller all knew where to find it.

Now, if you’ve got the back story on this shotgun shell mystery: Fire away.

And then, if you know where you’d find this week’s Photo Challenge, click “Comments” below.

(Photo/Patricia McMahon)


Pics Of The Day #1210

How did you spend your post-Isaias Day 5?

Doerte Inett’s family was visited by a “fantastic crew” from Nova Scotia. They took care of a tree that fell on the power line on their Sturges Highway property — and restored power. Their 10-month old supervised, from the screen porch. 

Cleaning up in the Old Mill neighborhood (Photo/Lauri Weiser)

Pleading for help off North Avenue (Photo/Ed Paul)

A few smiles at the Colony Road/Pumpkin Hill intersection (Photo/Christie Stanger)

Flying kites at Sherwood Island State Park (Photo/Ilene Mirkine)

This was the scene late today, at the corner of Fairport Road and Westfair Drive (Photo/Lauri Weiser)

The traffic light works at Main Street and Parker Harding Plaza. But Avery Place is still blocked by downed wires and limbs. (Photo/Lauri Weiser)


Wrong Way, Myrtle!

At first glance, there’s nothing wrong with this photo:

(Photo/JP Vellotti)

But look closely. The car is cruising the wrong way down the 1-way stretch of Myrtle Avenue, between Avery Place and Main Street.

After never in my life seeing that happen, I spotted it twice in 2 days recently. Alert “06880” reader/photographer JP Vellotti saw it too — a different time — and snapped this photo.

Then yesterday evening — while standing with 100 or so people outside the Westport Historical Society, at the opening of the (fantastic) new exhibit on our town’s African-American past — we all watched another car zip past Town Hall, headed the wrong way. (For good measure, it blew past the stop sign at Avery Place.)

I have no clue why there’s this sudden epidemic of driver cluelessness.

But it gives me a chance to ask a question I’ve thought about for years:

Why is Myrtle Avenue 1-way in front of Town Hall?

There’s no logical reason. The road is wide enough for 2-way traffic (if there’s no parking on the street next to the stone wall). It’s a waste of time — and a teeny bit of gas — to send people leaving Town Hall on a 180-degree loop from Main Street to Avery Place, just to go south on Myrtle toward the Post Road.

With 2 traffic lights on the way.

I know why Myrtle Avenue is one way at the Main Street/North Kings Highway light. There’s not a lot of room there, and traffic from Myrtle heads left, straight and right. All I’m talking about is 2-way traffic from the Town Hall exit, back toward Avery Place.

If someone has a good argument for keeping Myrtle Avenue 1-way, I’d love to hear it.

Otherwise, let’s make this little-but-big change now!

Traffic coming out of Town Hall should be able to turn left as well as right — right? (Photo/Alison Patton)