And so began a story that would enliven the trailside or campsite for those who had the privilege to spend time with Willard Howland. Little has been written about the life of this woodsman beyond bits and pieces of the stories he told. It could even be said that his tales, everything from experiences in the woods, to amazing fantasy creatures that inhabited his wilderness, tell more of who Willard was than anything a written history could reveal. [Read more…] about Woodsman Willard Howland and his Amazing Critters
In 1774, Daniel and his family immigrated to the colony of New York and settled with four or five other Scottish families in what is now Broadalbin in Fulton County, NY. [Read more…] about Archibald McIntyre’s Life In Lotteries, Politics & Adirondack Mines
History often makes a muddle of people’s lives. One such example is Charles H. Smith (ca. 1832 – 1911) of Petries Corners in the town of Watson, Lewis County, NY. Charles was well known as an Adirondack guide in the Beaver River/Stillwater area of the Western Adirondacks.
He lived to a ripe old age as an elder statesman of the guiding fraternity. But confusing reports of his age, a story about guiding for royalty, and a common first and last name have obscured his actual accomplishments. [Read more…] about History Corrected: Adirondack Guide Charles H Smith & King Edward VII
In the autumn of 1917, the well-known hotel and sportsman’s lodge Pauley Place was torn down as part of New York’s pursuit to bring her wilderness back on the path to being forever wild. The hotel was in Arietta, one of the most remote sections of the southern Adirondacks.
This town in Hamilton County spans sixty miles of wilderness, with Caroga Lake to the south and Tupper Lake to the north. The town was so sparsely populated during those years that the 1915 census listed less than four hundred permanent residents, only one physician, and more wilderness guides than farmers. [Read more…] about A Place Called Pauley: An Adirondack History
Jack Sheppard came to the Fulton Chain region of the Western Adirondacks after roaming the West as a youth and then served in the Union Army during the Civil War.
These experiences equipped Sheppard with the knowledge, skills, and social network to become a successful guide and enabled him to shift his occupation from guide to innkeeper, to builder, to businessman. He never married or raised a family, but when he left the Adirondacks in 1892 he left behind a long list of devoted friends that reads like a virtual who’s who of Adirondack history. [Read more…] about Jack Sheppard: Civil War Vet, Panther Hunter, Adirondack Guide & Steamboat Operator
The institution of a permit system at the Ausable Club’s Adirondack Mountain Reserve surprised and confused some hikers and would-be hikers. Many didn’t realize that third most popular High Peaks Wilderness Area access point, through the Club’s lands in the Upper Ausable Valley, was privately owned.
A similar situation holds at the Johns Brook Valley, another popular access point just northwest. That area is owned by the Adirondack Mountain Club (ADK), it faces similar parking challenges and is just as susceptible to a future permit system. [Read more…] about Adirondack Park Permits: Could Johns Brook Valley Be Next? Some History
Many of the lakes in John Brown’s Tract had guides who took their sporting parties to their own fishing or hunting camps north and south of the Beaver River. This is how lakes like Hitchcock, Beach, and Salmon got their names. [Read more…] about Hiram Burke, Noted Adirondack Guide of Twitchell Lake
Sunday, October 22, 1916, seemed like a good day for a deer hunt at the Adirondack League Club, near Old Forge. Walter D. Gelshenen of Manhassett, Long Island, and his brother-in-law William S. Lawson of New York City hired two local guides, Alexander White and Howard Stell.
They started out early for Fernow Mountain, east of Little Moose Lake and just south of Mountain Pond. [Read more…] about The Shooting of Adirondack Guide Alex White
In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, three generations of the Crego family worked as wilderness guides in the Western Adirondacks. Along the way, they raised families, worked for prominent employers, adapted to new forms of transportation, and helped lay the groundwork for the conservation movement in New York State. [Read more…] about The Crego Family: Three Generations of Adirondack Guides
The Club Camp is often mentioned as the first permanent structure built on Big Moose Lake in the Adirondacks. The word permanent is rather ironic as this hunting and fishing establishment had a relatively short history of just 28 years. Today the camp’s origins, visitors, and sad end seem largely forgotten. [Read more…] about The Union Club’s Camp on Big Moose Lake