Turning Back the Pages

Thanks go to my good friend, historian Franklin K. Bennett of Warrensburgh, for allowing me to delve into his research files.

A fisherman’s paradise

W.F. Reynolds and Percy Austin of Warrensburgh rode to North Thurman on their bicycles morning, May 11, 1912 and spent the day there fishing. They caught 56 speckled trout between them. Mr. Austin lost his eye glasses in a case somewhere between Athol and the top of Kenyontown mountain.

(Note…In a letter to the editor of the Glens Falls Times, on May 3, 1912, F.D. Orcutt of Chicago wrote in part, “In 1844 my father moved from Hartford, Washington County, to Lake George on what was than known as the Smith Brook place, about four miles north of Caldwell (Lake George) village on the west shore of Lake George. I was then eight, being as poor as Job’s turkey that leaned up against the barn to gobble and fish was an important item. We would bind two logs together for a boat and with a long pole get outside of the rocky point east of the Diamond Point Hotel, the late Coolidge place, here or most anywhere else we could pole this raft. Either one or two people during the early months of summer could catch in less than one hour all the fish — black bass, perch and sun fish (called Ring-Eyed Jonathans) - a family could eat in two days.

As soon as we could buy an old boat we would follow the fish out on the grass ground, 32 to 35 feet of water, where in August and September we could catch black bass up to seven pounds and perch, bullheads and eels in any quantity desired.”

(Note…Orcutt went on to say that in 1854 or 1855, one night he speared the first Pickerel caught in Lake George. It got away from him in the dark but was later found dead and it weighed 22 & 1/2 pounds.

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