The Clapp Family Sylvia Lake Legacy

One of the great things about this website is that it gives people an opportunity to reconnect with their past. Those individuals who once had a connection to Sylvia Lake often email me and tell me how much the lake meant to them. Last week, I got an email from Claire Miller, the granddaughter of D'Elbert Parker. (Parker's Bay) Luckily, because I'm working on the update to the book, I had some information to send her.

It seems that every property has a special story to tell. This website has neither the time, nor the bandwidth to tell them all. But every so often, it's important to stop and look at someone else's story. It make us realize how connected we are. Sylvia Lake has given many fond memories to those who have grown up splashing around her shore.

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Last week, I received an inquiry from Mary Lynn Conner. She had discovered the website and was asking about the camp that had belonged to her family in the 1950's.

Mary Lynn (Clapp) Conner wrote:

Hello, just discovered this wonderful website and thank you for developing it! My family owned a cottage on the lake in the fifties. I cannot even tell you where it was, all I remember is that it was two stories, dark red and had an upstairs enclosed screeen porch. We were by there in 1990 and it it was still dark red then and dwarfed by more modern cottages. It looked in beautiful shape at that time.

My parents names are Carroll (Joe) and Marilyn Clapp and they owned the Coca Cola warehouse in Gouverneur. We lived at 154 Park Street from 1953 to 1959. They are both deceased now. At the time we owned the camp there were two of us kids and we had a Dalmation. We sold the camp to Dr. Arthur Head and his family of Gouverneur.

My family has some photos of the cottage taken right after the hurricane Hazel? Hilda? Audrey? one of them, as well as some others. We also have some home movies. Is it too late to send photos and where do we send them? I noticed from reading the website that Katie Pistolesi lives at 162 Park Street and I think that she is the former Katie Goulding? I lived in Gouverneur till I was 10 years old and have always considered it my real hometown.

Do you have any photos you could share or any information about this camp? I realize there is not much to go on.

Thanks Mary Lynn Connor, Salisbury, NC.

Since I am working on the book, I knew exactly who owns the camp now. Here is the entry from the new book:

The property was purchased in 1966 by Ernest and Mary Buzzell. It was purchased from Dr. Head. Now it is owned by Mark Buzzell and Maureen Cloonan with Mary Buzzell having life use. Much of the camp is the original materials and the furniture is also much of the original.

From the 1980’s book p. 79... According to abstract, the land was sold to Edward McNamara and Amelia McNamara of Syracuse, NY on June 5, 1922 by Reuben Cary of Brandeth, NY. The transfer consisted of lots 33 and 34 and were sold with the stipulation that the premises “Shall never be used or occupied for the purposes of a hotel, boarding house, saloon or restaurant, nor for the sale of intoxicating liquors, . . .”; “And in case of the erection of a building on said premises, necessitating a closet, the same shall be made sanitary. . . .” According to the deed, the cottage (or land) was formerly owned by:

1922 - Reuben Cary
1935 - Edward and Amelia McNamara
1950 - Percy and Martha Nevin
1950 - Carroll and Marilyn Clapp
1953 - Arthur and Lillian Head
1966 - Ernest and Mary Buzzell
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The Buzzell Camp, 2005

So I sent Mary Lynn Connor the pages from the new book and she sent some classic photos of the camp when she was young. Click the smaller photo to get a larger view.

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Carroll Clapp, Jr. 1951 Carroll, Jr., Mary Lynn and Marilyn Clapp, 1951 Carroll (Joe) Clapp with his ax.

Isn't it amazing... Multiply this story by the 169 properties that have an entry in the new book. That is a lot of memories. What a legacy this lake has. It makes a newcomer like me, who's only been around for 20 years, feel humble.

 

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