Hidden Cape Cod: Fascinating, Little-Known Facts About Every Cape Town

There are 15 towns on Cape Cod and each one has its own story. Some of them are well known – some not so much. Here are 15 fascinating facts – one for each town on the Cape – that might make you see this sandbar a little bit differently:

Barnstable: A Famed Writer’s Failed Business

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Before he wrote “Slaughterhouse 5” and “Cat’s Cradle,” Kurt Vonnegut opened the country’s first Saab dealership in West Barnstable. Saab Cape Cod opened in 1957, but wasn’t in operation for long. Back then, the Swedish vehicles required what was essentially an oil change every time they were gassed up, making them difficult to sell. The shop closed in 1961, but the slow business afforded Vonnegut plenty of time to write in the showroom. Word is, that's where he composed another acclaimed work, “The Sirens of Titan.” The odd stone structure that once housed his failed dealership is still standing at the corner of Route 6A and Plum Road. (AP Photo)



  1. When I was a kid in Hyannis, helping work at a gas station behind my house, a guy pulled up to the pump and wanted some gas. He handed me a “can of OIL” that he said needed to go in the gas tank, before the gas. I NEVER heard of such a thing!. I opened the can, poured the oil in then put the amount of gas he told me to. I asked AL (the proprietor) what that was about. He told me it was a Foreign car, called a SAAB, and it used oil with the gas.

    • I owned one of those old Saabs with the 3 cylinder 2 stroke engine. Got great milage but not a lot of power and always started on cold Cape Cod mornings. Mine was a little blue station wagon and I had to replace the transaxle (transmission) 3 times. I gor pretty good at changing it out in a few hours. The little engine was so small I was able to just pull it out of the engine bay and set it on the floor. The body pan finally rusted out.

  2. What about Marstons Mills !

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