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The Journals of Arthur A. Carr — Part II

Jan 1, 1943:   Without having planned it so I find that my large journal which for a decade has taken whatever my pen might translate of our life and thoughts is now at the turn of the year complete. Thus I can begin this new book on New Year’s Day. It has been a quiet day for the Streetroad Carrs. Having attended Midnight meeting at the Church I went back to bed after putting on the laying house lights at 6 a.m. Thus it was mid-morning before we were aster. I have spent most of the day getting figures of 1942 together for income tax purposes. No sunshine most of these days. Scattering snow all day.

Jan 18:   Ages ago the soldier made his fond farewells and went away to war leaving his family and neighbors in comparative peace to live much as they did before unless they happened to live on or near a place chosen for a field of battle or line of march. In this war the same fond farewells are said but the similarity ends there. Often now the soldier goes to a place of security and plenty, while his family behind are rationed, restricted, taxed, bonded and worked to the bone. Total war it is, of a truth. I attended a Exec. Com. Meeting of the Hospital this morning and this pm cleaned up the saleable cabbage to go in the morning…. Storm most of the day – a hard granular snow.

Mar. 5… Mahatma Gandhi has just completed a well press agented (?)  fast of 21 days duration.  ( A protest against British action in India)>  We Americans are just beginning our rationing of many foods.  There in lies the point to the above current cartoon.  March winds howled today.   Uncle Walt is rebuilding the Barton house on the corner across the road.  He plans to remove the porch, paint, repair and eliminate an addition which has existed on the N.E.  corner of the house.

Apr.7: ..The Grange Hall just down the road burned between 2 and three o’clock this morning.

April 19 — Some 168 years ago today great things transpired around Boston, Mass.  I am using the new book “Paul Revere and the world he lived IN” as a “pick up and lay down” copy right now.  It is not only interesting but in these troubled times in (?) in that it shows early America at war and more disorganized and self seeking that is the case now.  Warm rain starting tonight.  Started off the garden season today by getting the peas sowed.  Chickens are doing fine —

Hubbard Hen

May 7: .. What a call we have for poultry. Meat is difficult to obtain so everyone is looking for un-rationed poultry. I am dressing off the pen of Hubbards at the rate of 12 to 15 per week. We get 39 cents per lb from the customer.

Jun 14: .. Flag day exercises tonight in Ti with a meeting of the Society for the Pres. Of Indian Lore… Ray Fadden of the Mohawks at Hogansburg was made a member of the council.

Nov. 29 .. I had hoped that someday I might pick up 700 eggs in one day. Saturday I did that. They are laying near that every day. Luckily I have whole grain from last summer so I only have to by mash when it is so difficult to obtain feed. Prices of feed are not as high as they might be on an uncontrolled market but are sufficiently high. 3.55 per cwt for laying mash.

Dec 10: ….The committee of the trustees of the Methodist Church which has the matter of rebuilding the sanctuary of the church under advisement met last night.  We drew up certain recommendations to be gone over by the whole board of Trustees and presented to the Official Board.

National Lead Company

(Photo caption:  Mill buildings at the MacIntyre Development, National Lead Company’s new mining project on the shore of Lake Sanford in New York’s Adirondack Mts., which is no producing ilmenite, a previously imported titanium ore, as well as magnetite iron ore.  Undertaken in the early summer of 1941, the mine was in operation one year later. )   Carr’s note:  Search of this record of several years past I am sure will reveal photo taken near the same spot as that pictured in the attached, “Tahawis” was then a silent wilderness.

Dec 30: .. Rarely do I go to the movies. Tonight was a rare occasion. The Phantom of the Opera played. It was beautiful. The signing was thrilling. The opera scenes made me hungry for the Metropolitan.

Jan. 3, 1944 .. Great news comes from the battle fronts. Russia is driving the Germans from her soil. Berlin lays wrecked and smoking from R.A.F. raids. The world is on edge waiting for the promised invasion from England.

Jan. 30 .. “Lore of an Adirondack Country” was presented to a small group at Headquarters House (Hancock House) by Carl Longeran. This is the first of the winter series of book reviews.

Feb 13….Two bits of history came to my notice today… first. A reference to Cheney’s Street house at Ti Street. I feel rather sure that this house was built by man named Cheney. In the memory of some of the older ones here a bar room was housed in an ell running north from the rear portion of the house. Thus Cheney’s Street House would seem to be this house… reference made about 1842. ..Second came in answer to a question which I put to Amos Blood at the Headquarters House this afternoon. He had been telling a Sun p.m. group of his boyhood here about 80 years ago. Afterwards I asked him about the tradition of treasure at Osman Rock. He claimed to know all about this but in presenting it I must mention the fact that a bit previous he had told of his father’s father coming to this country with Burgoyne (1777) and deserting into the wilderness of Vermont to later join Ethan Allen in the capture of Fort Ti, (1775) an event that occurred before the arrival of Burgoyne. With that I put down his version of the old story of Osman Rock.

During British occupation of the lake three British boats put up the creek that carries the water of Lake George down our valley into Lake Champlain. They were hiding a pursuing enemy craft and thinking that they would be captured they sank an oaken chest of gold with which the troops of the fort were to have been paid. This chest of gold was placed on the creek bottom near the rocks which borders the creek. The creek bottom being of soft mud the heavy chest settled into the ooze and could not be recovered by the British. Some many years ago a stranger came here and hiring men to help he proceeded to locate this chest with long iron rods shoved into the mud and with an augur to prove the find an oak chest when it was located. Having located the chest this stranger proceeded up the lake to Plattsburg (I think Amos said) and bought an old iron smoke stack. This he transported here and up ended it over the chest in the mud. Two men one of whom was Mike Cossey, went inside this tube or pumped the water and mud out while on the outside. On€ night when the mud was nearly down to the chest this stranger went down and retrieved the gold. He there upon disappeared leaving only the upended stack in the mud where it still is. Now on its side and under water…. This does not seem all plausible but that is as Amos says it was.

Apr. 13:  The fulfilment of the above has just taken place with out any particular difficulty.   …A & S (Adkins and Scotts) are selling the “Corner Market” to Frank McDonald, “Stub Stewart is soon to leave for the navy and we can get a fair price for it so it seems wise to unload.

Apr 14: Mt. Defiance Lodge #794 F. &A.M. has been the fortunate recipient of two legacies recently. Time will dim the memory of the situation set forth in one item the situation  as it is.  Therefor I will attempt here to concisely set it forth, that in the future one interested may know why things transpired as they did.  (Lengthy notes about the organization’s “Temple Fund” transactions and activities thereto.)

Apr 25.. Milton Grinnell started the freezer plant today.

June 11 .. W.P.B. (War Production Board) priorities are troubling me now. I have the freezer building ready but now to get govt. permission to install the machinery is the problem. .. went to Albany, Sat.. (met) with chief of priorities dept, asked a few questions and gave me a form to fill out and send to Utica Office.

Jun 16.. Permission to install refrigerating machinery.

Feb 19, 1945:  I ran across this excellent photo of L. H. Bailey in a John Deere advertising magazine.  He was one of the men at Cornell some 32 years ago who inspired me with increased love of the country and country life. He was then retired and an “old” ma to us….

(Photo text:  At eighty-six, Liberty Hyde Bailey symbolizes nearly a century of progress in American farming.  Mellowed by the wisdom of years, he is still keen, erect, confident, and youthful in his viewpoints.  He was learned to season daily living and thinking with the philosophical wealth of four generations.  Michigan farm boy, pioneer land-grant college educator, horticulturist, scientist, author, traveler, human benefactor – Doctor Bailey has maintained a love for the soil and for farm life.  None can speak with truer wisdom of events in rural America.)

Yesterday I laid down my genealogical work and breathed a satisfied sigh.  After nearly 15 years of plugging at it I had at last typed the last of Gen. XII.  Now to get it indexed.  Then I will lay it aside for this winter.  I am again toying with the idea of buying the Dan McCaughin place.  I looked in the windows of the house today and was surprised at the good condition of the building.  It would make a goo place for Frances to live.  I could then erect a broader house there and do my rearing down there.  My dream goes further, and includes a four story laying house here.

Mar 25:  ..Exciting news from Europe. Thousands of Allied warriors across the Rhine.  Some radio commentators are predicting only 30 days more of war in Europe.

Mar 30:  ..Considerable bad feeling has been caused in Ti of late by an anti-Catholic outburst by our (Methodist) Rev. Fugate.  I do not like such things.

Apr. 7:  ..Things have wintered in exceptionally fine condition.  All of the new set perennials seem to be coming thru.  We set the rose garden with 12 new bushes the other day.

Apr. 13:  Every year when I work the south garden I think over the quality of the soil.  So soft, so fine, such good earth it is that it is a joy to work it.

Apr. 21:  This will go down in history as the year of the great meat famine.  Little is to be had.  The demand for poultry is therefore very great.

Apr. 23:  No doubt we that are living these days should pause and try to realize what is going on about us.  It would seem that we are witnessing a unique thing.  For the first time in history a great industrial state is being totally destroyed.  Germany is doomed.  Berlin is in the hands of the Russians tonight (or nearly so).  It is not the first time however that those old words (he “that taketh up the sword shall perish by the sword.”)

May 1:  The people of earth are holding their breath these days.  Italy is all done.  Mussolini dead.  Germany tottering and no today comes the Nazi broadcast fo Hitler’s death.  We expect every moment that the work will come that the long bloody conflict in Europe is over.  Personally I am inclined to accept the story of Hitler’s death only with reservations.  How easily now, with radio and plethora of published phots etc. the public mind and the public taste can be changed.  Only a matter of a couple of years ago the pictures that are now common in print would have been with held as too shocking for publication.

May 10:  Right now, which is late in the afternoon, it is snowing outside.  For more than a week it has been cold and sunless most of the time.  The temptationof a diarist these ays is to fill page after page with the tremendous things that are transpiring.  I refrain from it.  Like enough thse days will be much written in the coming years.  I wish only tor record that V-E days, was not a jubilant one in this part of the country.  The war is not by any means over for us of the U.S.A.

July 14:  ….Masonic services were held tonight for Mr. (Pop) Jeffers. He will be greatly missed in the community.  He hled many of the offices in our town that serve the public without pay and few if any of the paying political jobs.

Aug 6, . Momentous, the commentators are calling this day. It is the day when the release of an atomic bomb on Japan… Momentous in the world and busy here in Ti. For some time changes in the Hospital set up have been indicated. Today everything happened. Steve Potter declined to be President again and Miss Tuttle who has resigned agrees to stay on. The nominating committee are to meet at Mr. Spalding’s Wed. night. Mr. Moses has given Mr. Spalding the whole financial picture for use of the Exec. Committee.

Aug 15:  V-J Day:   Another historic day.  Since of last night when Japan’s agreement to surrender was announced the whole world has been rejoicing.  We who remember Nov. 11, 1918 can not feel that the coming of peace solves everything.  Then we made the mistake of thing that peace just came and stayed without any effort on our part.  I hope that now we will bend over our efforts toward peace as heartily as we have toward war.

Sept 12.. It seemed good tonight when I sat in my accustomed place and participated in the dignified ritual of the Mason Lodge. The first meeting of the fall. Plans for the new Temple ae complete but bidders are few. We man have to wait until labor and materials are more plentiful.

Sept 21.. Much building is projected in Ticonderoga and I seem connected with a great deal of it. The hospital is to be enlarged, The Methodist Church rebuilt, Adkins & Scotts addition put up and an addition made to Wilcox’s store…Several polio cases in town have disturbed people no end. The Elks Club have ..raised $2,000 for an iron lung.

Oct 20.. The two houses at the rear of A.& S. (Adkins & Scott) store are now torn down. We hope to break ground for the freezer, storehouse, etc next week.

Oct. 28:   Notes on the current scene…..Wm Petty (age about 75) and Mrs. Rich were married today.  Mr. L.F. Perry (age about 80) was married a week past.  Wm Petty is the 3rd …..    Hope springs eternal in truth.

Nov. 19:   The building project at A. & S. grows as most such projects do.  Grows in projected size and probable cost.  It almost frightens me when I think what it will cost.  We members of the Corp. got together at Grant’s (Johnson) last Fri. night and went over many things.  We decided to issue the 100 shares of stock that are authorized but not issued and give the employees an opportunity to buy some.  To make such an announcement I went down Sat. night and gave the employees the story at 6 P.M. which is now closing time on Sat. night. I am working most of the time now on killing and freezing chickens…

Dec. 3:  Building costs are certainly expanded.  At a hospital meeting tonight Chas. Hunt reported that a new boiler house with boilers, stacks etc will cost about $30,000 instead of the $15,000.  Had conference at the Community Bldg. this morning with Walter McDonald and Sheldon F. Wickes in regard to fitting out new quarters for the Surrogate’s Office which S. F. Wi. Will occupy.

Jan. 1, 1946:  I am planning to make an onion cleaning machine that has been growing in my mind for some time.  My present methods of t hopping and cleaning are too slow.  At the present price of $3.50 per 50 lb bag.  I can afford to put sometime on them but when they get back to $1. a bag I will have to grow and prepare them very cheaply.

Feb. 11:  Leo Gayser who (we understood) is soon to marry Hazel LaFleur, was up this afternoon and asked for a job.  He wants to learn the poultry business and seems a sincere lad.  …he has had no experience. I am inclined to hire him as I certainly need help.

(Photo Caption:  This year, at the annual meeting of the New York State Agricultural Society at Albany on January 23, “Century Farms” citations were presented by Lt. Governor Joe Hanley, pinch-hitting for Governor Dewey.  Mr. and Mrs. Lawrence Jayne, left, received the citation as owners of Jayne Farm near Kelloggsville, Cayuga Country, and Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Cook, at the right, received the citation on behalf of their cousin, Miss Ruth Stafford, owner of Stafford Manor, Whallonsburg, Essex Co.  The Society awards these citations to farm families where the farm has been continuously owned by the same family for at least 100 years. — Photo was published in the Weekly “American Agriculturist”)

Feb 22:   Monday last I attended my first meeting of the Essex Co. Farm Bureau Directors at Westport.  Nothing very grave transpired but it is always pleasant to visit with others who till the soil.

Feb 25:  I hate these church politics.  Be that as it may I was forced ot indulge in that pastime tonight……Ray Nash and I took it upon ourselves to inform Mr. Parker , the Dist. Supt. who presided at our fourth quarterly Conf. tonight, of the feeling expressed at the meeting of the Finance Committee a week or so ago.  The Fin. com. recommended a continuance of the present salary of $2,200 but wished the D. S. to know that more would be paid if a “good” man came here as Pasotr next year.

April 2:  We hung the new sign today.  It reads —

Sun Up Gardens

Eggs  — Dressed Poultry

Vegetables — Gladiolus

May 23: – The Masonic Temple committee awarded a contract to Milton Grinnell to build the new Temple.  .. “Jerry” Slocum came to town yesterday for the summer and was up to see me tonight.  He has an idea of making me head of he Soc. for the Pres. of Indian Lore.  I intended to decline if possible…

May 25:  The current shortage of meat is bringing the people here for poultry.  We have sold some 25 head yesterday and today.

Aug 23:  ..This forenoon I attended my first Gladiolus Show.  Muriel (wife) and I drove down to Whitehall for the purpose. I exhibited. Corna, Mother Kadel, Bill Sowden, Com Koebl and Leading Lady.  I am hopeful of wining some prizes.  I saw some very lovely blooms —

Sept. 8:  Gladiolus ae worthy of mention this year.  We have had, and are having , multitudes of bloom and bloom of excellent quality.  Bubblets ae thriving a great deal of bloom with huge florets. …tomatoes are 100% gone with late blight which struck suddenly, about two weeks ago.

Sept. 16:  These photos were taken about two weeks back by Ruth with her new camera and show different views of the garden.  Our poultry business was immense this past week as meat is practically out of the market since O.P.A.  again rules our lives after a lapse of a few weeks.

Oct 7: ..Up here in our hills today we have smugly been listening to reports from Florida where a hurricane is tearing things apart.

Nov. 24:  I am cleaning a huge crop of gladiolus bulbs.  Friday Muriel and I drove down country half for the purpose of selling bulbs.  I saw several glad growers but found no market for my product.  I now plan to put them in packages next spring and try the retail markets.

Jan. 24, 1947 …Next Tuesday, Grant Johnson and I plan to go to New York City to interview a Mr. Dodd regarding a bakery proposition.  The new building is pretty well complete and the upper floor in good us by the Kenwood Mills.

Mar 25:  I have been giving a good deal of time lately to the Society for the Preservation of Indian Lore in an effort to get the said outfit on a firm organization foundation.  Last summer “Jerry” Slocum had the Society Incorporated  but that is an far as it has gone to date.  Last Autumn at an informal meeting of those whom Jerry considered as the “council” a committed on Bylaws was set up.  It consisted of Tom cook, Dr. Tyler Dennett and myself.  About three weeks back I succeed in getting George Spring (Chamber of Commerce) to outline what he had under stood from conversations and correspondence with Jerry that he thought proper for bylaws.  Upon studying them I came to the conclusion that we must start at the bottom and re-write the whole thing.  This I did.  Then next step was to confer with Tom who made a few changes.  Last Wed. evening Tom and I went out to Hague and sat all evening in his splendid library with Dr. Dennett.  We considered the draft that I had made in detail.  Dr. Dennett made several changes.  Mainly his change was the addition of an Exec. Comm. and changes in language.  We are now calling a meeting of the Council for next Saturday to launch the new corporation.

Mar. 27:  ..At a hospital meeting yesterday morning Pres. Hunt brought news of two gifts to the hospital form Horace A. Moses.   One of approx. $10,000 for a greenhouse and one of approx. $120,000 for some future project as memorial to his mother.

Mar 30..we launched the Society for the Preservation of Indian Lore Incorporated as a fully organized and going concern. I presided in the absence of Jerry Slocum who was made Governor and who is very ill in Charleston.

April 22, I was down on my knees just before noon.. Hearing a voice I looked up and Dr. J.P.J. Cummins was walking up the row. He stopped to tell me that he had just received word of the death of Horace A. Moses. “H.A.” has been quite an influence in this, his native town. I have been rather close to his projects here the last several years and will miss him and his frequent letters.

Apr 24:  Last Friday, Chas. Hunt, in his Packard, Miss Tuttle (Hosp. Supt.), Ben Semiloff., Walter McDonald and I with him started at 6 a.m.  for Springfield, Mass. and there attended the funeral of H.A. Moses.  Ten were there from Ticonderoga.

June 4… It is time I was in bed, but I must note a most unusual rainfall of Monday night and Tuesday morning. About 2 inches of water fell causing much damage and shattering all records for high water. Hague was badly washed out. The bridge at Crown Point is gone.

April 16, 1948.. The new Masonic Temple is nearly ready. We hope to meet there on the 28th. The new wing of the Hospital is complete and the Church (Methodist) remodeling is underway. ..thus I report on the three building projects that I have an interest in by virtue of board membership. Altogether in the last two years I have been interested in approximately of $415,000 worth of building here in Ti. The projects with their approx. cost are: Adkins & Scott expansion $110,000; M-L Hospital – $250,000, Masonic Temple – $40,000 and Methodist Church – $15,000.

June 15:  Never such a wet time have we known.  Rain fell off and on all day yesterday and into the night.  Already full of water the soil sheds that surplus with the concomitant erosion of top soil.  Water lays on some of my land this morning.

(Journal note:  David, Arthur’s son, was working for Mason Smith, local photographer)  He processed some film taken of the flood at Hague during this time.  “Cobb’s Gas State at Hague during the flood.  Water in the foreground is flowing over the highway.”

June 25:  ..A photograph of the new Bakery at Adkins and Scotts.

Aug 2:  .. The Indian Pageant is underway.  Tom (Cook) and I are supervising building the new entrance.  Tom has superintended construction of an authentic reproduction of an Iroquois Long House.  The attached photo is one taken during construction.  It is now bark roofed and sided.

Sept. 5:  Sun Up is a bustle this morning in preparation for our soon departing for Cooperstown.  Tom and Ethel Cook are going with us to attend a meeting of the New York Historical Association.  I am to speak before them tomorrow morning on the Indian Festival here.

Oct. 20:   – … ceremony — the laying of the cornerstone of the Ticonderoga Masonic Temple.  (The location is the current site of their Lodge on Montcalm St., across from the Hancock House.

Dec 20: ..Tom and Ethel Cook, Muriel and I drove away from here (Ticonderoga) Dec. 4 morning and drove back at Sun Up on Thurs. afternoon Dec 11 .. in reference to trip to Washington, DC.  … Washington is a marvelous city.  The amount of money poured into monuments and public buildings is beyond all comprehending.  The rotunda of the Capital building amazed me, the Jefferson Memorial thrilled me, the National Art Gallery tired me, the courtesy of guards and police men pleased me, the climate surprised me and I should like some day to return.  More than Washington the Pennsylvania Dutch country interest us.  Their neat farms, their broad wheat fields, the solid barns with first story of masonry all took our attention.

Dec. 31:  On the last evening of this year there lies on my desk before me a bound copy of “the Carr Book.”  It is a proud moment.  I have struck to it for almost 15 years when many times it would have been easy to quit.  I hope it will be source of pride to many people.

Members of the Carr Family and trustees of the Ticonderoga Historical Society on the occasion of the Carr family visit to the Hancock House in June, 2017 for the purpose of donating another large collection of Arthur Carr’s  journals to the Society.  Selected entries from the Journal Book covering the years from 1943 to 1962 from this donation is presented in this series.

Support the Ticonderoga Historical Society – became a member.  

9/23/17 wgd

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