POCOMOONSHINE LAKE LODGES
Men of wealth who lived in the “city” and were interested in hunting and fishing often built sporting camps. From the time of the Civil War, the locations of these camps spread farther and farther from the “city” as means of transportation improved. Steamships and rail lines brought the “sports” to our area about the turn of the century.
Louis B. Adams of New York City arrived on the shore of Pocomoonshine Lake in 1909. He acquired land from Fred Harriman on August 5, and had a set of camps built. He later acquired three more pieces of land from Harriman, in 1911, 1915, and 1919. He was a man with a dark complexion who had a heart problem, and he owned those camps until his death. It is my understanding that Charles and Lucretia Carlow of the Pokey Road named their ninth child, Louis Adams Carlow (Dec. 5, 1914 - Jan. 3, 1992] after this man, and that Lois Carlow and Juan Carlow also got their names from the Adams family.
In the spring of 1935,
Robert L. Pond of the Bronx, New York, bought the set-up from Adam’s
nephew Richard. Pond, a stockbroker, had spent time at Grand Lake
Stream hunting and fishing with Chester Yates as his guide. The
following paragraphs describe the camps between 1934 and 1948.
Herbie Fitzpatrick gave most of this information in January of 1996.
Lewis B. Adams
dressed as many city sports did at the time. The
guide was also dressed
as most local rural men. The picture is dated July 26, 1930. This picture likely was not
taken at Pocomoonshine Lake.
The camps consisted of four log buildings, three with frame additions. A frame boathouse was near the shore. A framed cook's house with sheds and the old garage were near the main lodge. Later a "new garage" was built by Charles Cousins on the way into the camp yard. A water tower stood near the old garage and a set of doghouses completed the buildings.
The main lodge had a kitchen where all the food was prepared by the cook. During Pond's years, that cook was Katherine Beaton. Katherine was from Mabou Mines, Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia, and worked year round for the Ponds. Unlike most homes in Alexander at that time, the kitchen had running water. Refrigeration was in the form of a cylindrical aluminum icebox which stood in the entryway. The ice came from Pocomoonshine Lake and Charles Cousins was the man who supplied it.
The main lodge also had a large dining/living room and a glassed-in porch.
West of the main lodge were the other three log buildings. The first two were identical, each with a porch, a large sitting room, a small bedroom, and a bathroom with running water. The last log building had only the porch and a bed/sitting room with a large stone fireplace.
The cook's house or guide's camp was in two parts. Katherine had her room, and Herbie had his.
Herbie Fitzpatrick went to work in the fall of 1934 for Louis Adams. Herbie's Uncle Zealie Smith had worked for Adams for many years. Zealie had bought Duck Lake Camps, so he got his nephew to take over his old job, and gave him some training.
Each spring Herbie had to open the camps, the battens had to be removed from the windows and doors, the boats and canoes pulled out of the boat house and prepared for the season, the water and electrical systems activated. The water system was a gasoline-powered pump with a big flywheel that moved the lake water to the tower. From the tower the water ran by gravity to the camps. The electric system was 32-volt direct current. All along one wall of the old garage were large storage batteries. A gasoline powered “Delco” generator was cranked up once a day to charge the batteries. The batteries powered lights in the camps.
When the Ponds were at camp, Herbie started his day by putting on a fire in each occupied camp, and in the kitchen. He took care of all the details such as filling wood boxes and helping Katherine with cooking and laundry. He was the chauffeur whenever the car went to town, and was Mr. Pond's guide whenever he went fishing or hunting. He would paddle the canoe, or run the big boat which had a four cylinder marine engine. Whenever he was out with Mr. Pond, Herbie carried a pocket full of cookies for Pond was a diabetic.
Robert Pond was a gentleman and a serious upland bird hunter. Pliney Frost remembers him as the only one to ask permission to hunt on the Frost farm at the foot of Lanes Hill. Pond had a number of hunting dogs, including one that cost $500. The dogs spent the winter at St. Stephen with Charles "Chic" Middlemiss.
The fishing was good in those days. Five-pound pickerel were common and the white perch were enormous. This was still in the time of Fred Harriman and the commercial fishing on the lake. Herbie never caught a trout, but there were eels to no end. One day he took a Mr. Davis fishing. Davis, a friend of Pond's, was the president of the American Locomotive Company and not much of a fisherman. Out around the first point, Davis hooked onto a large fish. He never set the hook, he yelled at Herbie to "Watch the boat!" (they were in a canoe), but dragged the fish in close enough for Herbie to net. It was a small mouth bass that weighed about five pounds and was the first Herbie had seen taken out of Pocomoonshine Lake.
One of the interesting things in the main lodge was a stuffed "Arctic" or snowy owl. Arthur Harriman had shot the owl down river and Mr. Pond had had it stuffed.
Other people who were at the camp included Mr. Pond's aunt, Mrs.Hibbet, Mrs. Pond's niece Miss Tewksbury, their friends, Mr. And Mrs. Burns of New York, Harley Andrews who helped at times with jobs, and Cecil Hatfield who repaired the Delco and engines when needed.
Robert Pond died and his widow, Eleanor sold the camps on April 8, 1949 to Eldon and Beatrice Embleton of Harvey, New Brunswick. They changed the camps into a commercial sporting camp, renting camps and boats by the week.
Herbie and Ethel Fitzpatrick were long time residents of Baring. Later they resided at Sun Rise Apartments in Calais. They were members of the Alexander Grange. Herbie helped with this history.
On October 8, 1949, Eldon P. and Bea Embleton of Harvey, New Brunswick acquired the property of Robert L. Pond from his widow. The Embletons made several changes to the buildings to create a public sporting camp.
The new garage was converted into a two-unit rental and the former guides and cooks camp was made into one rental. The three log camps along the lakeshore became units 4 – 6 and were unchanged except for a bathroom being added to unit 6.
Commercial electric power was available from Dennys River Electric Coop so the old 32-volt generator and batteries were abandoned. Also an electric water pump was easier to maintain than the old gas pump, so the old water tower was taken down.
In May 1953, Eugene Moriarty and
Egbert “Bert” Inman brought the property and business
from Embleton. In June of the following year, the Moriartys became
sole owners of the Lodges.
Pocomoonshine Lake Lodges #3 “the guides camp” and #6
Gene and Estelle made one major change over the years in the operation of the camps. They had purchased a Continental Plan business where all meals were prepared by the owners and served on the enclosed porch of the main lodge or taken up lake as picnics by the sports. They changed this to American Plan where each unit had a kitchen and no meals were provided by the owners. The two units in the new garage became one unit with one of the rooms becoming a kitchen. Kitchen areas were built into the other units as well.
Later the Moriartys built a two-bedroom addition onto the main lodge making it a comfortable home. They turned number 3 camp by 90 degrees so that it faced the lake, and moved the sheds back beside the old garage. Gene and Estelle spent 35 seasons at the lodges. When they started, they had to drive to Charlie Brown’s store to use the telephone.
In June 1988 Jeff Wright purchased the lodges and he continued to run them as a public sporting camp for about a decade. Recently he uses them as a family camp.