The Errett Cottage, located at 109 First Street in Bethany Beach, is among the historic Bethany Beach homes and cottages being featured on the 4th Annual Historic Coastal Towns Cottage Tour. The tour is set for Saturday, Oct. 9, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
The Errett Cottage was built in 1903 by Pittsburgh attorney William R. Errett, one of the six town founders and the treasurer of the Bethany Beach Improvement Company. The family matriarch, Jane Errett, returned to the cottage each summer with her six children, traveling two days by train, boat and horse-drawn carriage to the neighborhood near the Bethany Loop Canal that came to be known as “Little Pittsburgh.” Her husband joined them for the month of August.
They carried their belongings in a steamer trunk that remains in the cottage today. Meals were cooked on a three-burner oil stove, and they eventually acquired an icebox for daily ice deliveries to keep food cool.
Four generations of the family have lived in the home. The couple’s son, William Errett II; granddaughters, Patricia Markley and Jane Vincenti; and now eight great-grandchildren have preserved the historic charm of the house, caring for the original pine tongue-and-groove ceilings, fireplace wall, moldings and trim, stairs, built-in cupboards and hardwood floors.
The house sits on 2.5 lots and remains largely unchanged, with only the necessary modern updates to permit guests to enjoy a comfortable and peaceful visit to the shore. One exception is the garage. Originally located behind the house, it was swept away by the infamous Storm of 1962. In addition, the original kitchen was enlarged by enclosing the back porch, keeping the original clapboard siding that is still visible inside.
One of the six earliest Bethany Beach homes built from the same floor plan, this cottage is the only one still owned by the same family. Guests eat at the original oak dining and kitchen tables and can enjoy the sea breezes circulating through the tall windows, high ceilings and wraparound screened porch. Portraits of W.R. and Jane Errett grace the walls of the cottage and inspire family members to honor their legacy by preserving this family and town treasure.
A limited number of tickets are available for the Historic Coastal Towns Cottage Tour. They can be purchased at Made By Hand (Route 1, South Bethany), Gallery One (Route 26, Ocean View), Bethany Beach Books (downtown Bethany Beach), Bethany Beach Town Hall (on the day of the tour only), and online at www.thequietresorts.com. Tickets cost $25 each, and proceeds support the developing Coastal Towns Museum at 40 West Avenue in Ocean View.