One Hundred Years Ago – June, 1914
Tragedy strikes yet one more time
Deep mystery surrounds the fate of Frank and Myron Spaulding, father and son, who started in a row boat Sunday morning for a day’s fishing on Lake George. The boat was found floating bottom upward in the lake on Monday, June 8, 1914, near the shore opposite Adirondack Camp, north of Hague. It was empty and was nearly cut in two, a rip starting within a few inches of the gunwale and extending below the water line. It had evidently been struck by the sharp prow of a motor boat, but when it was occupied or after it had capsized it was impossible to tell. No trace of the missing men has yet been found and they have without a doubt been drowned. Physicians claim the bodies would never be recovered if they went down where the boat was found as the water there is at least 250 feet deep. A diligent search has been made but not the slightest clue has yet been developed.
Sheriff Richard J. Bolton, who conducts the Trout House, at Hague, took charge of the search and has made every effort to clear up the mystery, but without avail. He went to Ticonderoga and interviewed the owner of a fast boat which was on Lake George late Saturday afternoon and which many people believed might have been the one which struck the Spaulding boat. The Ticonderoga man furnished a complete alibi by accounting for his whereabouts at all hours after the Messrs. Spaulding were last seen and no scratches or marks were found on his boat.
Frank Spaulding was about fifty-two years of age and father of Frank Spaulding Jr., who was accidentally shot and killed on Sept. 2, 1913 by young Wellington S. Morse of New York. Myron Spaulding, 23, was unmarried. When the father and son did not return home as it grew dark on Sunday evening, Mrs. Spaulding sent out an alarm and the wrecked boat was found shortly after daylight the next morning.
A brisk wind blew across the lake on Sunday night and it is impossible to tell how far the boat might have drifted.
(Note – This current 1914 tale is just part of a tragic stream of events that went on and on. In this column in the Sept. 21, 2013 Adirondack Journal was the story of Wellington S. Morse carelessly shooting Frank Spaulding Jr., 15, in Johnsburgh, with a shotgun and the boy bleeding to death, from his left leg on his way to the hospital. In the March 8, 2014 issue was the story of a Lake George jury acquitting Morse of second-degree manslaughter after which he left with his mother, Hattie M. Morse for her home in New York City. On March 11, 1914, Mrs. Morse’s boyfriend, John H. Price, 35, shot and dangerously wounded her after she had spurned his advances, grappled with her son, Wellington Morse and then ended his own life with a bullet in his right temple. Now we have the story of the apparent drowning death of Frank Sr., and his son, Myron Spaulding who was present in 1913 at his brother’s shooting.
I received an E-mail from Brenda Ross, of Hudson Falls, who said that Frank Jr., was the brother of her grandmother, Bertha Spaulding Robbins and that the drowning victims are buried in Hague Cemetery and she thinks that Frank Jr., is there also.)
Miss-step in the dark
William Lincoln, of New York, night clerk at the Fort William Henry Hotel, Lake George, fell head foremost down two flights of stairs in a cottage adjoining the hotel about 9:40 o’clock Saturday night, June 13, 1914 and sustained injuries which caused his death soon after in the Glens Falls Hospital.
Lincoln roomed in the cottage and went on duty nights at 10 o’clock. He was called by one of the office employees as usual Saturday night and said he would be in the office within a few minutes. In passing through the dark hallway to descend the stairs it is believed that he stumbled and losing his footing, plunged to the bottom of the stairs where he was found unconscious by another employee. He was injured internally, several ribs were fractured and one of his shoulder blades was broken.
The injured man was taken to the Glens Falls Hospital by automobile but little could be done for him. He was about forty years old.
Emerson causes indignation
Residents of Schroon Lake village are up in arms over the action of Senator James A. Emerson, of Warrensburgh, proprietor of the Leland House, who, incensed at the delay of the village board in removing a band stand which he claimed obscured the entrance to his hotel, took matters in his own hands and with a crew of helpers from Warrensburgh, tore down the offending structure.
The band stand was built twenty-three years ago, but of late had fallen into disuse. In answer to the senator’s demand that it be removed, a meeting of the village board was called to consider the matter, but a quorum failing to appear, action was deferred until the next regular meeting, two weeks later.
Although before its destruction, residents of the village had no particular love for the band stand, the senator’s tactics caused a reversion of feeling in many and in consequence “indignation meetings” are of daily occurrence with the end not yet in sight. (Note – It was only a short time later, Nov. 1, 1914, that Senator Emerson’s Leland House was destroyed by fire. The three-story frame building, erected by W.G. Leland, was forty-three years old.)
Spirited dash to death
William Morrison, 51, after a short but spirited dash to catch the southbound Hudson Valley trolley car leaving Warrensburgh, Saturday morning, June 20, 1914 at 7 o’clock, was stricken with heart disease just as he was about to step into the car in front of the Grand Army House and fell unconscious to the ground. He was carried into the hotel where he died a few minutes later without regaining consciousness.
Mr. Morrison had been employed at the Fort William Henry Hotel, Lake George, for some time and went to his work every morning on the 7 o’clock car. Saturday morning he was a little late in getting way from his home on Horicon Avenue and when he saw the car coming down Main Street, he made a dash to catch it and panting from his exertion, grasped the hand rail and was placing his foot on the lower step when he collapsed. He was carried into the Grand Army House by postmaster Robert Murray and Jay Griffin who placed him on a coach in the parlor. There, after a few gasps, he died.
He leaves a widow and one daughter, Miss Maude Morrison. He is survived by his sister, Miss Minnie Morrison and three brothers, Charles, Eugene and Wesley Morrison. Internment was in the Warrensburgh Cemetery. (Note – The Grand Army House was later the Warren Inn and currently it is a new building, George Henry’s.)
Boy meets hard ground
The two Johns, Hastings and Straight, a pair of live-wire youngsters, were racing on their bicycles on the sidewalk in front of Pasko’s Block one evening recently and were hitting up a pretty good pace when young Hastings’ rear wheel struck the curbing and he was hurled to the walk with considerable violence. One arm was severely injured. (Note – Pasko’s Block was just south of today’s Floyd Bennett bandstand, named for Alexander and his son, Emerald Pasko.)
E.C. “Kid” Manzer, H.C. Smith, Lewis E. Crandall, Andrew Wescott and Marshall F. Burt went by auto to Botheration Pond, in North River country, on a fishing trip and returned home with forty pounds of speckled trout.
There was a family reunion at the home of E.J. Hewitt, in East Thurman on May 31, 1914. All of the family was present, three daughters and their husbands, three sons and their wives and seventeen grandchildren, each son having a son.
Frank Allen, whose house in Bakers Mills was burned to the ground recently, has moved into the Dennis Waddell farm house. Allen’s son, George and wife, with a young child, were living with their father and they saved a little clothing and a few household effects.
Mrs. Ernest Wood, of Bolton Landing, has recently received a letter from her son, Percy Wood, who is a soldier in the United States Army and is now stationed with his regiment at Vera Cruz, Mexico. He sent a picture of his company and says that he is very pleased with army life.
Grim reaper strikes victim
Byron Merrill, of Bolton, residing in the northern part of town in the locality known as Padan Aram, died from the effects of injuries sustained when he was kicked by a horse. He was driving home alone from Horicon when the accident occurred and was found unconscious in the road and taken home by a passer-by. He leaves a widow and two small children. He was the son of Edward Merrill, the brother of Marlow Merrill and the nephew of Maroni and Nephi Merrill. Internment was in the Bolton Cemetery.
Probably the only person now living who has a clear personal recollection of the great Napoleon Bonaparte is M. Pierre Schamel-Roy, of Neuilly, France, who in August of this year will be 106 years old. M. Schamel-Roy, as a boy of 12, saw the fallen emperor in exile at St. Helena, where he was taken to visit his father, who was a faithful follower and servant of Napoleon until the latter’s death. (Note – After being defeated at the 1815 battle of Waterloo, Napoleon died in 1821 at St. Helena.)
News far and near
King Alfonso and Queen Victoria of Spain recently entertained Theodore Roosevelt at luncheon at their summer palace, La Granja, forty miles from Madrid. King Alfonzo and Mr. Roosevelt first met at the funeral of King Edward VII in London.
A son was born to Mrs. Leslie Tripp, Monday, June 8, 1914 at home on the Cunningham farm adjoining the Woolen Mill tract in Warrensburgh. (Note –
The former Cunningham Retreat, today on the north corner of Library Avenue and Milton Avenue, has been renovated into apartments.)
Mrs. Harry Floyd, of Adirondack, welcomed a 9 pound baby daughter on June 9, 1914 to the family home.
R.E. Valentine, of Friends Lake, has moved into his new cottage.
Readers are welcome to contact Adirondack Journal correspondent Jean Hadden at firstname.lastname@example.org or 623-2210