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The Lake George Mirror Archives

W.H.Tippetts – Lake George, June 14, 1890: Part 1

February 3rd, 2010


To the best of my knowledge, the Lake George MIRROR  is the only paper published that slipped before the footlights of public opinion and made a bid for public favor, without a long-winded salutatory. The first issue was not up to the standard chosen by the editor and publisher. The present issue shows decided improvement typographically.  The MIRROR will reflect the lights and shadows thrown upon its face by the passing social events during the summer. To learn where the MIRROR circulates read the third page.


-Lake George is by no means in the wilderness. Pretty Villages dot its shores and the surrounding country, and in the season, the shores and islands are lined with merry camping parties, who do not wish to get too far from civilization, typified by the hotel. A great deal of visiting back and forth is therefore carried on. Gay pleasure boats diversify the waters, and no harsher echoes of the cruel Indian warfare linger round than-

“Low sound of leaves and splash of oars,

And lapsing waves on quiet shores.”

The best society abounds, but it is not forced upon one at all hours. There may not be so much flirting of the young folks as there is said to be at Mount Desert, but it is safe to wager that more good matches are made among the poetic surroundings of Lake George in one season than elsewhere in five.

One of the interesting points for excursions is a genuine monastery, “St. Mary’s of the Lake,” a summer place of the Paulist fathers, whose headquarters are in New York city, under their director, Father Hecker. The order is largely composed of converts, and its work is similar to that of the Jesuits. The grounds here were presented to them by the distinguished lawyer, Charles O’Connor.




-In Lake George, the lake trout are seeking deeper waters and are more difficult to catch.

-An effort is being made to organize a tribe of the Improved Order of Red Men at Lake George.

-The next thing for the residents and hotel men of Caldwell to set about is a sprinkler for the dusty streets.

-The steam yachts Caprice, Daniela, Wapanak, Rover, Fanita and Minuette, owned in Bolton, are in commission.

-Basin Bay point is for sale. It is well wooded and situatued  but a short distance from the new club house of the L. G. Y. C.

-The Delaware and Hudson Canal Company are building a new pier on the east shore of Fourteen Mile island. It will be used to land excursions.

-The Lake House opened its doors for the summer on Monday. It will not be many days before the shady lawn is covered with gay damsels.

-There is as pretty a bed of pansies as one can find in a year’s journey on the Goodman house lawn at Bolton Bay. It is a homelike place, nicely situated in the village.

-The State Forest Commission will spend the summer in the north woods to supervise the purchase of a portion of the million and a half acres required for the park in the wilderness.

-E. F. Babbage, “the phat boy,” our old friend from the gay and illusive banks of the St. Lawrence, rolled into the Sagamore one day this week, remarked “It’s ‘ot. Good morning. Good bye.” He weighs five hundred pounds. May his shadow never grow less.

-P. Manning Skinner, “the doctor” and a famous landscape artist, will appear at the Kattskill house Monday.

Assembly Point, Lake George, June 14, 1890.

W.H.Tippetts – Lake George, June 14, 1890: Part 2

February 3rd, 2010
One of the New York city papers is devoting considerable space to “the way the lumbermen are destroying the trees in the Adirondacks.” It is not the lumbermen who are doing the damage. It is the pot hunter and careless sportsmen.
The lumbermen cut only the larger pines and soft woods, leaving all of the hard wood trees and the smaller growth of pines. The pot hunters go through the woods, build fires, and leave without taking proper precautions to guard against the spread of the flames.
One can travel for days and miles in the Adirondacks without coming to a clearing. Here is an illustration of the way the north woods are being “written up.” Recently I had an occasion to interview William McEchron, of the Morgan Lumber company, Glens Falls,
and a gentleman of unimpeachable honor and truthfulness.The question came up about the so called attacks of the lumbermen on the trees on state lands in the northern wilderness. Mr. McEchron said: “I visited one of the northern counties recently and while at one of the lumber camps, learned that two young men had recently traveled through the district, representing themselves as special correspondents of a New York paper. They questioned one of the men in our employ about state lands. The conversation ran something like this:
“ ‘This is all state land around here, isn’t it?’”  asked the newspapermen.
“The woodsman looked at them. Thought they were two verdant youngsters from the city and replied with a grunt, which the pair put down in their note books as ‘yes.’
“Several questions of the same sort followed, the answers to which were about the same.
“Three days afterwards a two-column article came out in the New York paper they represented, setting forth how the lumbermen were robbing the state lands of timber and leveling every decent sized stick above ground. They made no distinction, but said the lumbermen were cutting all trees above six inches in diameter.
“The truth of the matter is, that the axe men engaged in cutting were at work on our own land and there was not a rod of state land in sight. And again, the lumbermen were cutting only pine timber.”
The idea of turning the north woods wholly into a park is looked upon with little favor by people living in this region.They urge, in case the whole wilderness is turned into a park, it will prove the ruin of hundreds of worthy men depending on the lumber and mining industries for bread. The cry is raised, preserve the Adirondacks for the people. Who are the people? Is it the workingman, the mechanic, the clerk, the day laborer? Or gentlemen sportsmen, wealthy enough to take themselves and their families to the mountains and seashore and remain away from home months every summer? The average mechanic or clerk cannot afford to take his family into the Adirondacks during the summer. It is the wealthy who enjoy the mountains, and not the “people.” It is openly said the men most anxious for the welfare of the people are those who have managed to get hold of several thousands of acres of mountainous country fit for nothing on earth except deer and wild animals, which they desire to sell to the state at a profit of two or three dollars per acre. There are always two sides to every story. The public have been treated to the side setting forth “how the lumbermen were destryoing the trees.” Suppose they turn the shield and look on the reverse where, if this writer is not very much mistaken, they will find silver instead of black.
 W. H. T.
Assembly Point, Lake George, June 14, 1890.

W.H.Tippetts – Lake George, June 14, 1890: Part 3

February 3rd, 2010


camping-cot-It is an indisputable fact that the bracing air and pure waters of Lake George can nowhere be exceeded in the world. Scores of the most prominent families visit this delightful region each successive summer. The high altitude of the mountains is especially beneficial to persons afflicted with hay fever and pulmonary diseases.
Aside from the curative properties of this section, the excellent hunting and fishing bring hundreds to the lake each year. Many, and in fact the greater number of visitors put up at the hotels, which are equipped in first-class style. The invalid can find here all the comforts and even luxuries that may be desired, while the social plane will compare more than favorably with most of our seaside resorts. Clothing ordinarily worn is suitable for all occasions. A soft brimmed felt hat and broad roomy shoes will complete the outfit.  The fact that no venomous snakes exist will be appreciated by camping parties.
Many campers want such home comforts as shingles and clapboards on their camps, windows with shutters on them, a cooking stove, silver or plated forks, spring beds and hair mattresses. People who want and carry all of these into the woods are not real campers, but glorified reflections of campers. Neither is it necessary to go to the other extreme and rough it too hard with a rude and primitive “lean to.” Boughs spread for your bed on the cold, damp ground, a single blanket and a single iron utensil, kettle or frying pan as the case may be, to do all your cooking in. People who know how to camp out do not stint the number of cooking utensils. As well be short of the necessary variety of food as the necessary utensils for proper cooking. One kettle and one frying pan are not enough. Our stock was ample, and we found use for every piece. We had one teakettle, one ordinary kettle, three frying pans, a broiler, a coffe pot and a tea pot. You can live in a camp with less than these, but not comfortably. Your guide that knows his business doesn’t want to keep one dish waiting while he fries another, and your real woodsman doesn’t want his dinner served in courses as he has it at home. So there need be as many frying pans as things to fry, so that eggs, trout and warmed over potatoes or onions, pancakes and an omelette may go to the table hot together. Every competent guide knows how to cook and serve these and how to make the best of tea and coffee. When you go into the woods, then, be as sure as to your number of frying pans as the number of blankets, and remember that one lacking will be as much missed as an extra suit of clothes after a wetting.
The MIRROR is in receipt of a letter from N. H. Bishop, the popular author and traveler, who is the owner of a charming summer home on the shores of Lake George:
Dear Sir.- Thanks for your copy of the bright “MIRROR” mailed to my address, you are doing good work for our beautiful lake. Enclosed find subscription price for the paper for the present season, and I wish you all the success which your energy deserves. I am truly yours,
                                                                                                                N. H. Bishop.
-It was my pleasure to meet Mr. and Mrs. Pliny F. Sexton, who were coming to the head of the lake from their charming summer home, that gem of Lake George, Recluse Island. Few people understand why those who know the island best call it “L. S. O. E.” The initial letters strike the nail on the head, for if it is not the “Loveliest Spot on Earth,” it comes close to it. Mr. Sexton was at one time treasurer of the state.
 Assembly Point, Lake George, June 14, 1890. 
Lake George Mirror Deer Head
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