Trumbull – Random thoughts on our Future Camp – Oct., 1945

 

October 7, 1945

Random Thoughts on our Future camp.

 

I have just purchased from Anna Heurlin the Lake Winnipesaukee Island which has so many pleasant memories for all of us – – a Christmas present jointly and equally to each of my six children – – legally, that is, but from a practical standpoint, to be shared, of course, with their wives and children, now and to be. (I may add by way of parenthesis that such a situation in some families might in future develop into a cause for friction between brothers and sisters and their families, but somehow I feel that in our case, I will not be sowing a seed of possible future discord but that the family spirit of unity and tolerance toward one another, which, with your mother’s spirit still present, has been with us all so far, will still guide us and prevent future misunderstandings from arising. That at least is my fervent wish.)

There are many interesting and happy problems that arise from this acquisition. I will jot down a few which immediately occur to me and will welcome others which may occur to you.

1 – Name. I neither know nor care what name, if any, the island bears on official state maps. As owners we have the privilege of calling it what we will. What is your suggestion for a suitable name. Give reasons for your choice.

2 – Living accommodations. Do each of you want to build a cabin of your own or would it be better to pool our resources, erect jointly a “camp” which would be suitable for comfortable living both for summer and winter sports? If the former, we will have to go more into detail as to parceling out lots to each of you. If the latter, some interesting questions present themselves:

a – Choice of location of the building.

COMMENTS:  Lad, who visited the island this fall with Marian, says the trees have grown surprisingly. There will undoubtedly have to be some clearing out of brush. I can see Dick and Dan just naturally taking charge of this phase of the work, with Dan perhaps doing some surveying, preparatory to choice of site.

b – Type of building.

COMMENTS: Let’s have suggestions from each of you as to what your ideas are along this line, if you alone had the decision to make. And then, with the variety of ideas to work from, we can settle on something that seems to meet the composite idea. “Six heads are better than one”.

c – Boat house, dock, swimming safeguards (with small children in mind)

COMMENT: Joint ownership would seem to be desirable under the circumstances, of canoe, rowboat (outboard motor?), Sailboat, motorboat and (for Ced) seaplane – – any or all. Ideas on this please.

d – Water supply.

COMMENTS: Dug well or drilled well? Would it be possible to get permission to pipe water from spring on mainland, and if so, would this be desirable? How about water supply in winter? Hand pump or electric pump? If we expect to have shower, toilet and kitchen sink, or possibly washing machine, a pump would save many hours of manual labor.

e – Electricity

COMMENTS: Would it be possible to obtain, at a reasonable cost, electricity from the main road (central power station supply) vs. our own diesel electric plant for light, pump, water heater, electric refrigerator, radio, washing machine and other “Modern inconveniences”. (Gas, of course, would not be available for cooking and coal would present quite a transportation problem by rowboat from the mainland, so we would have our choice of wood, kerosene or electricity, for cooking, heating, hot water and lights.

f – Heat.

COMMENTS: Shall we have an open fireplace? Wood, of course, would be available on the island. Of what material should fireplace be built? Are there enough stones on the island? Or would you prefer brick, concrete or what?

g – Sewage disposal. Cesspool or chemical toilet? We should find out state sanitary laws on this matter.

h – Boats. Which kind first and how about storage facilities when no one is occupying cottage? How about ice boat in winter?

i – Interior Arrangements. Anyone collected plans of a summer cottage? What arrangement of living room, kitchen, bath, how many bedrooms. Built-in bunks and furniture? Storage places for clothes, bedding and foodstuffs. This would seem to be a problem, especially for the girls to consider.

j – Miscellaneous

1 – Would expense of telephone be justified?

2 – Where could we garage cars on mainland?

3 – How about daily milk supply?

4 – Fire extinguishers

5 – Garbage disposal

6 – Mail arrangements

k – Job assignments.

Sports – Hunting and fishing – Zeke

Winter sports, skiing, etc. – Ced

Mechanical installations and upkeep – Lad and Ced

Clearing of grounds, maintenance of landscaping,

fruit tree planting, garden? etc. Dan and Dick

Supervision of building erection – Dick

Schedule of occupancy, assignment of boats, troubleshooter,

Smoother-over, etc. – Dave

3 – Finances. How is all this (outside of cost of island itself, which I have taken care of) to be financed. If we get a government housing loan or bank loan or building and loan arrangement for building and equipment, how are payments to be met? Should each one contribute a stated amount monthly? What is the limit of total cost which should be set and how many years should payments be spread over? Taxes, which are now about $3 a year on $100 assessment, would naturally increase. There will also be insurance and running expenses for food, fuel and mechanical upkeep. When should work be started?

4 – Future Considerations. What arrangement for future sale of property should be made, if that ever becomes necessary or desirable? A jointly owned property invariably brings problems of one sort or another, if one or more of the joint owners desires to liquidate. Some arrangement agreed to by all in advance to cover such a contingency should be thoroughly understood and agreed upon in advance. What is your idea on this?

Grandpa never ceases to amaze me. He says: “I will jot down a few which immediately occur to me…” This is the result, in one evening!

Tomorrow and Friday, another letter filled with news of the family and friends associated with Grandpa and Trumbull.

On Saturday and Sunday, more Special Pictures.

Judy Guion

 

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Trumbull – Dear Members of the Clan Guion – Dick and Jean Are Home – Oct., 1945

Spring Island, with a very low water level

Trumbull, Conn., October 7, 1945

Dear Members of the Clan Guion:

Again events this week have combined to cut down my correspondence time, but late as it is now, I must take time to at least hit the high spots and some of said spots have considerable altitude.

First, Dick and Jean are home. Yes sir, the clan is beginning to gather. The first inkling I had was a telegram the first part of the week from Dick announcing they were in Miami, ending with the cheering words, “See you soon.”, And as good as his word, he and Jean dropped into the office Friday in a surprise visit. He looks well, has a miniature mustache and has not put on any weight, and outside of a cold, is the same old Dick. Jean says she has put on a little weight but it is not noticeable. Gosh, but it’s good to have two boys home at once with their wives, but I, apparently, cannot be satisfied – – all I need now is Dan and Paulette, Ced and Dave, and then I will admit to a maximum of satisfaction.

The same day Dick and Jean arrived, Britta, Anna and young Peter Bagshaw visited us and stayed to supper. Biss, Zeke and the two boys also came over for supper so we put three leaves in the table and it began to look like old times again. Later, we showed pictures, movies and stills, of Alaska, Venezuela, etc. I got Anna aside, found out she was willing to sell the Island, so, as a novel Christmas present to you children, I decided to buy it for you all. This will practically clean me out of cash put aside for Christmas gifts, and then some, but I figured it would be worth it to you all. I will have something more to say on the thing a little later.

Martin and Flor Williams visiting Trumbull

Then yesterday, the date of Lad’s meeting, planned five years ago in Venezuela, came around and he and Marian went down for their reunion with the Venezuelan crowd. They stayed overnight in New York and today brought Mr. and Mrs. Williams back with them, and again we showed movies of Venezuela, Alaska, etc. Jack Fillman and his wife, and Red (Sirene) and his fiancée, dropped in to see Dick and Marian and later my cousin Dud (Dudley Duryee) and wife from Brooklyn drove up to see us and stayed to supper and the movies. Incidentally Dan, Martin Williams asked me to be remembered to you when he saw that I was writing a letter to you. They are staying overnight, so I have just left the party to write this note to you all.

No letters this week from Ced or Dan, but Dave wrote a short note commenting on some of my previous letters. He says: “Rumor has it that GHQ will be moving out sometime in October, but doesn’t know whether or not he will go along. He may stay in Manila or go to Korea or possibly to Yokohama.

Now let’s get back to the Island proposition, which, I admit, has got me all excited. Ever since your mother and I first went up there with Rusty, landing late one night and sleeping out on the island, which it was too dark to see until next morning, I have been hoping that someday events would work around so that we could own the Island and perhaps build a little cabin on it where we could spend summer vacations. And at last this dream has materialized. I am attaching a sort of snap shot of my thoughts on the subject and invite you to do the same, so that from the combination of thoughts on the subject, we ought to arrive at some final solution fairly acceptable to all. Therefore I will close this brief letter and proceed to the Island subject.

DAD

Tomorrow, Grandpa’s “Random thoughts on our Future camp.” On Thursday and Friday, another of Grandpa’s usual letters filled with news of family and friends.

Judy Guion

Trumbull – Dear Regulars – Visiting The Heurlins – September, 1945

Spring Island at dusk, June 5, 2017

Trumbull, Conn., Sept. 30, 1945

Dear Regulars:

This will be of short duration, as it is now almost 10:30 EST and we have just arrived home from a trip to Bedford, N.Y. (Lad driving), where recalled on Brita, and Sydney Bagshaw and were lucky enough to find Anna visiting. Peter, whom you will recall Dick, as having had an accident while swinging at his home in Whitestone, has grown to be quite a boy. They have a really wonderful place – – an old mill which is been converted with truly artistic touches which you might expect of a Heurlin married to an artist – – with mill stone, a mill race which they use as a swimming pool, a waterfall, and in every sense a most attractive place. They are all coming for a visit to Trumbull next Friday, we hope, on which occasion we will show pictures of Alaska, etc. We talked about old times, the island at Lake Winn., which Anne still owns and which she is willing to sell. What do you boys think of the idea of our purchasing it and putting up a cabin for a summer camping place?

Jean, I am enclosing an important-looking registered communication from the State Department. Dan, I just yesterday received a letter from the Dept. of Justice stating it was necessary, in order for you to secure a visa for your wife, for me to furnish birth certificate or other evidence that you were actually born and not a figment of the imagination. So I immediately wrote to Mount Vernon asking for such birth certificate and as soon as it arrives (possibly Tuesday), I shall at once send it on to them.

Lad and Marian went shopping again and have practically completed purchasing everything on the list for the Rabets (the couple who have let Paulette, and sometimes Dan, stay at their house at no cost) except a pale blue striped shirt which they could not find. They have been ordered from Sears Roebuck, maybe some $35 worth, and as soon as they arrive will be re-shipped to you via the regular Army channel. As I told you in my last letter, five boxes of clothes for Paulette have been sent and yesterday I sent a new addition of the S-R catalog.

Letters this week from Marian and Dave, which I will not take time to quote due to the lateness of the hour. I also received a letter from Catherine (Warden, a former tenant, with her husband and two children,  her husband is now in the service), now with her sister in Hartford, stating that she will resume her residence in the apartment at the earliest possible moment. I had at first thought of possibly holding off renting it on the chance that Dan and Paulette would be coming home soon and would thus have a suitable domicile, but this is so uncertain now that I thought it best not to hold off any longer. Then too, the loss of revenue means quite a difference in the income. Several others have looked at it but for one reason or another, one or the other of us didn’t get together on it.

And  by the way, Lad went to Devens (Ft. Devens in Massachusetts) and next day came back again with a 15- day extension on his furlough, goes back to Devens on October 10th and then ?????

And so, my little ones, will you accept this meager offering in lieu of a full-fledged letter, minus some interesting quotes, and will try to do better next time. Oh, you will? Thank you so much.

I love you just as much.

Short windedly yours,

DAD

Tomorrow another letter from Grandpa and on Wednesday, his “Random thoughts on our Future camp”. Thursday and Friday, I’ll have another of Grandpa’s usual letter, filled with news.

Judy Guion

Special Picture # 16 – Early picture of Spring Island – 1948

ADG - Spring Island with Lad, Dick Ced and Grandpa - 1948

This picture was taken within a few years of Grandpa’s purchase of Spring Island.

Lad, Dick, Ced and Grandpa were all there in 1848.e.

It was taken in 1948. Another Special Picture tomorrow.At this point, we used tents to sleep in.

ADG - Grandpa and the boys on Spring Island (cropped) - 1948

Just look at Grandpa, with a coat and tie !!! Even Ced has a tie on.

I wonder if Dan took the picture? He would have been in Trumbull, so I think it’s a pretty good guess.

But it could have been Dave. At this point, all the boys are home and some have started  families.

Tomorrow, another Special Picture.

Judy Guion