•100 years ago - August, 1913•
Riverside Hotel incinerated
Herbert F. Stanley’s hotel at Riverside was destroyed by fire July 27, 1913, together with most of its contents, entailing a loss of $10,000 which only $1,000 was covered by insurance. It was owned and conducted by Mr. Stanley who is also proprietor of a general store and a bottling house at Riverside.
The fire was discovered about 3 o’clock in the ice house at the rear of the hotel. It spread with amazing rapidity and the rear walls of the hotel were soon ablaze.
About 50 men, many of whom were guests, attempted to check the progress of the flames but their efforts were to no avail. All hope of saving the building was soon abandoned and it was left to its fate while the firefighters directed their efforts to saving the Delaware & Hudson company’s station, a wooden building near by. This was covered with wet blankets and constantly deluged with water until the blaze in the hotel had died down and the danger had passed.
When the fire was at its height, George Parsons of Glens Falls had his hand cut by falling glass and J. Brady’s coat caught fire from the intense heat but the prompt action of his companions saved him from serious burns.
The Riverside Hotel, as it has been known for several years, was a long wooden three-story structure. It was conducted for a long time by Luke Martin and had long been a popular resort among summer visitors. At the time of the fire it was filled to capacity.
Man conduct lands him in jail
William Dingman’s wife had him arrested Aug. 13, 1913 and hauled before Justice Hodgson on a charge of disorderly conduct. He was given 30 days in the county jail. In the meantime, Mrs. Dingman will care for her seven children without the very little help that Bill gives her.
County centennial celebration
The Warren County Centennial celebration opened in Warrensburgh on Sunday, Aug. 3, 1013 with a union service at the Methodist Episcopal Church with pastors and people of the Methodist, Baptist and Presbyterian churches participating. The church was tastefully decorated with the national colors and with its brilliant lights and handsome fittings presented a beautiful sight.
Lewisville is not behind other parts of the village in decoration for the Centennial. Many of the residences and business places are very tastefully trimmed with flags and bunting. (Note: “Lewisville” was the name for the area of town on River St. extending from the Osborne Bridge to the Woolen Mill Bridge at Milton Avenue.)
In other news, a large crowd was present at the Historical Day exercises in Johnsburgh on Aug. 5, 1913 when a marker was erected in the center of the village.
Immigrant achieves success
In the mid 1800’s, Dennis McCarthy, an Irish immigrant, came to this area as a child and settled in Warrensburgh where he learned the tanning business.
He was a tanner who eventually turned to the shirt business and shipped his merchandise to New York city and made good. He left Warrensburgh in 1888 to go to Glens Falls and built two shirt factories there and one in Ballston Spa as well as several lumber mills under the title of McCarthy and Barnett Lumber.
McCarthy has four children, a son, Joseph and three daughters and he built a big house for himself and also one for each of his children on Goodwin Avenue, Glens Falls. Now, in 1913, McCarthy is known as an immigrant, once in the tanning trade, who is currently a successful man with three shirt factories, a family, a large house, a stable for his horses and a car. By hard work and perseverance he truly achieved the American dream.
(Note: On July 5, 1907, McCarthy was crossing the state road near Bloody Pond when he was struck and ran over by a touring car and nearly killed. Although badly injured, he survived.)
Hotel man dead
Edgar Wetmore, 83, proprietor of the Grove House at East Lake George, died Aug. 12, 1913 at the home of his daughter, Mrs. W.R. Root, 42 Grant Avenue, Glens Falls. He was well known throughout New York state as one of the best of the hotel men. Death followed a stroke of apoplexy. He had attended the Centennial celebration in the city and it is believed that the excitement was too great for him. (Note: I was startled when I read about Mr. Wetmore’s former home at 42 Grant Avenue, Glens Falls as in 1958 I lived in that house.)
Forest fires raging
The dry weather of the last few weeks has allowed numerous forest fires to gain headway at various points throughout the Adirondacks and extensive areas are being burned over,
A big fire on Orlando Bryant’s property on Harrington Hill and another near the Viele Pond have kept Fire Patrolman Robert Cunningham and a large force of men busy for two days. Both are now under control. A fire on Crane’s Mountain, believed to be of incendiary origin, has burned over 300 acres and is still raging.
Work on the Panama Canal is progressing nicely and plans are being made for its opening next year.
The Schroon River in Warrensburgh is little more than a big brook, the water having fallen lower than any dry period of previous years. The reservoir is nearly exhausted and unless the protracted drought is broken soon there will surely be a water famine. It has been very cold and dry and crops need rain badly. We are very fearful of an August frost and if we do get one the season’s crops will be pretty close to a failure.
An earthquake shock was felt in Johnsburgh at 11:30 o’clock Saturday night, Aug. 9. 1913, rattling stoves and dishes at a great rate. The report sounded like thunder.
It is estimated that there are more than 1,000 power boats on Lake George this summer.
The town has finished a reinforced concrete bridge in Knowelhurst that is the best bridge ever built across Stony Creek.
A large crowd enjoyed the stage presentation of “The Texas Cattle King,” on the night of July 26, 1913, at Remington Hall in Chestertown.
George Putnam of Johnsburgh Corners has purchased a fine carriage of the auto style with electric lights. J. Noble Armstrong recently took a load of 3,000 pounds of wool to the Warrensburgh Woolen Mill in Warrensburgh.
A son was born Monday, July 28, 1913 to Mrs. Edson Pelletier of North Thurman. A big 9-pound boy arrived at the home of John Patrick at Trout Lake, Bolton.
The Pines boarding house in Warrensburgh is full to capacity with jolly summer guests. (Note: This house is today on the north corner of Hudson St. and 4th Avenue.)
Quite a number of children in Sodom are experiencing the whooping cough. Harry Wadsworth and Kenneth Morehouse are having a hard time of it. They have been coughing for about for weeks now and are getting as poor as little crows.
Origin of Schroon River’s name
The name Schroon, as we call the East River, is a corruption of another name. Some French officers of the garrison at Crown Point in exploring came to Schroon Lake and named it in honor of a French poet, Paul Scarron, who died in 1660 in Paris. Now this Scarron was the first husband of Madame de Maintenon, (Francoise d’Aubigne) who was the wife of French King Louis XIV. This woman was the governess of the king’s children and afterwards he married her. Legend has it that the young French officer who named Schroon Lake was in love with Francoise.
Readers are welcome to contact Adirondack Journal correspondent Jean Hadden at firstname.lastname@example.org or 623-2210.