Woods Hole

At the very tip of the town of Falmouth is a small village that is world renowned. Woods Hole is home to some of the world’s most famous marine science institutions: Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, the Marine Biological Laboratory, the Woods Hole Research Center, NOAA’s Northeast Fisheries Science Center, a USGS coastal and marine geology center and the campus of the Sea Education Association.

Woods Hole first gained worldwide notoriety as the home to the Pacific Guano Company. This private firm produced fertilizer from Guano which was imported from the Pacific, the Caribbean and South Carolina. After the firm went bankrupt the site lay dormant till Spencer Baird, a world renowned scientist and assistant secretary of the Smithsonian Institute and appointed by President Ulysses S. Grant as the first U.S. Commissioner of Fisheries saw the potential for building the center of marine science at its location.

The Village of Woods Hole is an active place year round. During the summer it busts at its seams. The Steamship Authority runs regular ferry service to and from Martha’s Vineyard. Water Street, the main thoroughfare of town, is dotted with restaurants and shops. Behind Water Street is Eel Pond, where many recreational boats are moored.

Overlooking Woods Hole is beautiful and majestic Nobska Light. The lightkeeper’s house is the residence of the commander of the Coast Guard Sector Southeastern New England. The light house tower is open regularly for tours and the grounds of the lighthouse are open to the public.

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