amaTravelers from across the map make their way to Cape Cod each and every year with good reason. This area’s appealing climate, beautiful scenery, and proximity to Eastern seaboard fun make it a wonderful place to enjoy a great getaway year-round. While modern marvels like delicious dining stops, festivals, and entertainment venues make the Cape a place where you can indulge interests of all types, it’s also an area rich in the Cape Cod history that speaks readily to those with a passion for pursuing the past. Taking some time to look into its origins paves a unique path to its present-day beloved place in the hearts of travelers from just about everywhere!
Cape Cod History: Glacial Origins
While it may be hard to envision today, the area known as Cape Cod that’s filled with sand and sun was once a glacier-covered peninsula that took up the vast majority of what is now Barnstable County. The very first inhabitants of what is today known as Cape Cod were in fact the Wampanoag people. They lived on the land for thousands of years before European settlers ever arrived on the shorelines. By the early 1600s, explorers were making their way towards present day Cape Cod. In 1602, Bartholomew Gosnold made his way to its shorelines and was said to have found the waters filled with codfish. This discovery led the English explorer to subsequently name the area Cape Cod. A mere 18 years later in 1620, Provincetown would become the landing site of the pilgrims. While they continued onto Plymouth, Cape Cod played an important role in the establishment of the country as we know it today.
According to the history of Cape Cod, it’s generally understood that the first areas of Cape Cod to be settled were the bay-side regions. This would include present day Yarmouth, Barnstable, and Sandwich. Each of these areas was officially incorporated in 1639. Fishing and farming turned the area into a thriving place for villages to grow. Today, much of the area’s economy focuses on tourism, but it’s hard to overlook just what a pivotal role the sea still plays.
The beauty and abundance of Cape Cod wasn’t lost on early inhabitants or European settlers according to the history of Cape Cod. It’s certainly not lost on modern residents and visitors. Preserving the area’s natural resources has become a priority for many who have a heart for this area. In fact, the northern and eastern ends of the Cape were designated Cape Cod National Seashore as recently as 1961. Today, Monomoy National Wildlife Refuge can be accessed on the islands that sit just off the southeastern edge of the cape.
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When you’re planning a trip to Cape Cod, the team at New England Vacation Rentals has the accommodations you need and deserve. Reach out today to learn more and to start planning! Check out the best restaurants in the area.