The Grand Old Lady of Ocean Avenue
Chris Burrell
It’s been called the flagship of Ocean avenue. When it was originally built in 1891, it belonged to Philip Corbin, a manufacturer of household hardware and locks from New Britain. Conn., who got his start as a locksmith apprentice and grew his business until it employed 15,000 people.
 
His house was a Queen Anne man­sion, three stories tall and with eight bedrooms. It was a sign of the changes taking place, the transformation of a re­ligious retreat called Cottage City into a full-fledged resort called Oak Bluffs.
 
Not surprisingly. Mr.
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Fire Destroys a Community Treasure; Corbin-Norton House will be Rebuilt
Mark Alan Lovewell

One of the Island's most historic mansions, the Corbin-Norton house on Ocean Park burned to the ground in the midst of a heavy gale Monday night.

By the time firemen arrived, the house was fully involved, fanned by northeast winds as high as 40 miles per hour. Oak Bluffs fire chief Dennis P. Alley said it took firemen from three towns more than four hours to gain control of the fire and prevent it from spreading into the neighborhood. Mr. Alley said he determined the cause of the fire to be electrical wiring in an outlet behind the wall in the first-floor living room.

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Touring Oak Bluffs, Paranormal Boom Town Ablaze With Spirits
Sam Bungey

More and more ghosts are being drawn to Oak Bluffs’ attractive summer housing. “Some spirits have a sliver of their psyche attached to some place where they were happy,” explains Holly Nadler, Haunted Island author, bookstore owner and part-time ghost-hunter. As these properties change owners more frequently, some are becoming crowded. “This place is gooey with ghosts,” said Ms. Nadler, conducting a tour of the Camp Ground last weekend.

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