change in our family's way of life —
namely, The Dump and the sequence of events leading up to it are roughly
We visited our friends the Davises in South Orleans on Cape Cod in
1914. It was always fun there. Dr. Davis took the whole summer off,
which meant that days were passed in a most leisurely
manner — breakfast about ten, luncheon about three and
dinner at nine — in other words about two and a half hours later than
our usual schedule. We boated and we swam and in
the evening we played games, and there was never a dull moment.
It was during this visit that my father became interested in
buying land in South Orleans and building a summer house there. He had
always liked that part of the Cape for its simplicity and
its comfortably warm water. In his younger days he often
visited the Paysons on their island in East Orleans, hunting and
fishing, and on one such occasion he developed a severe tooth-ache and,
as no dentist was available to relieve his suffering, he extracted the
tooth himself with a gadget on his pocket knife
that was intended for pulling stones out of a horse's hoof. He dis-infected
the wound with whiskey and thus avoided complications.
In 1915, we visited the Davises again and by now we had
bought land next to them and had sunk an artesian well to be
sure of an adequate water supply. Mrs. Davis's brother, Mr. Holy-oke,
was drawing plans for our house — "The Dump", my
father called it because he was dumping so much money into it.
The next summer, 1916, The Dump, though still unfinished,
was far enough along to be lived in, and we moved down in time for Aunt
Margaret Davis's wedding to Uncle Mon Cochran.
I was invited to the prenuptial party, and as I walked along
the beach towards their house with Mary, Aunt Sophy and my