139A Bradford Street

139A Bradford Street Condominium (Unit 2)

139A Bradford Street. [2018, Dunlap]

139A Bradford Street and 5 Freeman Street were part of the same lot until 1936, when the separate Bradford Street parcel was created along the red dotted line. [Map by Dunlap]

Left: Liberty Belle was the last of three fishing boats owned and skippered by Capt. Henry Henrique Passion. [Collection of Capt. Anthony L. “Tony” Thomas III] Right: Captain Passion. [2012 Provincetown Portuguese Festival booklet]

139A Bradford Street in 2004, before it was purchased by Scott Caldwell and Jonathan Williams. [Massachusetts Historical Commission]

Text last updated on 7 October 2019 | This parcel was once the rear portion of the 5 Freeman Street lot. The Freeman Street property was acquired in 1930 from Joaquin Silveira Goulart, of São Miguel in the Azores, by the sisters Florence Elizabeth (Macara) Passion (1909-1980) and Mary Carmen (Macara) Tarvis (1903-1991) and their husbands, Capt. Henry Henrique Passion (1907-2006) and Ernest Manuel Tarvis (1901-1997). In 1936, the Tarvises transferred the Bradford Street portion of the parcel to the Passions.

Captain Passion stood among the legends of the 20th-century fleet. He was not only a “highliner” — a fisherman who invariably brought the biggest catch to market — his people were also mainlanders, sitting atop the informal (but sometimes passionately observed) class system of the Portuguese diaspora. Passion was born in town to parents who had immigrated from Fuseta, Portugal, on the southern coast. Their name was Piaxion, Henry told Carol Leonard La Duke for an interview in the 2005 Provincetown Portuguese Festival booklet, and it was pronounced PA-shon. Henry said the Anglicized version of the family name was conferred upon him at Town Hall.

As an adolescent, Henry shrimped in St. Augustine, Fla., but he returned to the Cape when he was 20 and fished on Francis & Marian and Richard & Arnold.

On 9 July 1928, he and Florence Macara were wed in Provincetown and moved into the house at 5 Freeman Street, which was known then as “Mariflor” — after Mary and Florence Tarvis. Some time before the Tarvises and Passions divvied up the Freeman Street lot, Henry built the house at 139A Bradford Street. Their daughters were Diane Theresa Passion, who married Cpl. Frank V. Motta Jr. in 1952, and Brad Sage subsequently; Eileen Passion, who married Dennis Aresta; Sonya Passion, who married John Santos; and Carmen Florence Passion, who married Clifton H. Wade Jr. in 1965.

Captain Passion owned and skippered three principal boats during his years in the fishery: Liberty, a 51-foot, 32-ton vessel with a cypress hull that was built for him in 1940 by New Augustine Boat Building in Florida; Liberty II; and Liberty Belle. He also owned the 35-foot sport boat Sinbad. During World War II, Captain Passion was the junior vice commander of Auxiliary Coast Guard Flotilla No. 617, a group of fishing vessels that stood ready to assist the U.S.C.G. in emergencies. As the war neared an end, in January 1945, he was elected president of the Provincetown Fishermen’s Association.

When he brought in 85 boxes or 101 boxes or 125 boxes of fish from a trip, it was news in the Advocate. But his own one-trip record, he told La Duke, was a secret 175-box haul from three tows aboard Liberty II during the war. He could not land at Provincetown with that many fish — way above allowable quota — so he steamed to New Bedford to offload the excess at midnight. “Don’t write that down,” the captain instructed his interviewer some six decades later, as if he were still anxious about getting pinched.

With Florence, he owned and managed the Fore ‘n’ Aft Motel and Cottages, 402 Shore Road, in Truro, which stood (in a state of dereliction) until 2016. The Passions retired to Florida in 1971. She died in 1980. His second marriage was to Roberta Earle.

Captain Passion sold 139A Bradford Street in 1982, for $62,000, to Tiago C. Avelino and Juvenalia N. Cruss. They sold the property four years later, for $135,000, to the hair stylist Peter J. Tompkins, who moved his Peter Tompkins Hair Deezines, from 8 Freeman Street, to the retail annex in the front of the house. Tompkins sold 139A Bradford in 1997, for $239,000, to Joseph M. Neumeister and Michael H. Mitchell. Neumeister owned it for the next eight years, before selling it to Christopher Bogart and David Kucher for $950,000.

Bogart and Kucher converted the property into a condominium in 2006. Unit 1, the retail annex, was purchased in 2006 by Scott Caldwell and Jonathan Williams, for $410,000, as the home of the Jonathan Williams Salon and Spa. A year later, the couple bought Unit 2, the residential part of the house, for $483,000.

In memoriam

• Florence Elizabeth (Macara) Passion (1909-1980)

Find a Grave Memorial No. 192470711.

• Capt. Henry Henrique Passion (1907-2006)

Find a Grave Memorial No. 192470718.

• Ernest Manuel Tarvis (1901-1997)

Find a Grave Memorial No. 190627673.

• Mary Carmen (Macara) Tarvis (1903-1991)

Find a Grave Memorial No. 190627655.

¶ Republished on 23 September 2023.

139A Bradford Street on the Town Map, showing property lines.

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