Keith was growing up!

April 16, 2015

Keith’s first years where in International Falls, Minnesota one of the coldest cities in the United States.  Here he is in a buggy with furs to keep him warm.

Keith in a Buggy as a baby

Keith in a Buggy as a baby

I know that my Dad was well-loved, and it looks like his sisters would take care of him on occasion including him in their play. He was very close to them over the years and stayed in touch.  In later years he would honor them by naming the boat he built by adding their make-believe friend Mrs. Scubalub to the boat’s very long name.  I will share the boat’s name in a future post. I think it is funny to see the sisters in the various photos holding Keith.  I like to think they had to restrain him from being curious about the camera.  A hobby he took on in his later life.

Keith with his sisters

Keith with his sisters Jean and Eddie

Keith is in the living room of the house in International Falls in the photo below.

Keith at the Window probably at the house on Riverside drive in International Falls

Keith at the Window probably at the house on Riverside drive in International Falls

The photo below was taken about 1915 and Keith is with his siblings.  The writing on the back reads that he was the one responsible for poking his eyes out. You have to click on the photo to make it bigger to see that his eyes are a bit odd. Keith is on the left, next is Jean, Eddie, Miriam, Gordon and Vivian.

McDonald children in 1915

McDonald children in 1915

If we compare Keith in the photo above which is dated 1915, we might be able to figure out how old he was in this next photo.  He looks very much the same but maybe a little younger.  The outfit is similar.

Keith in the Oval. I think he was about eight?

Keith in the Oval. I think he was about five or six?

There is writing on the back of the photo above but it is very difficult to figure out….It reads something about his birthday and school. It had been put in a frame and cut up and they used glue.  I was only able to get this much revealed.  I just know there is good stuff in the writing?

This is what was on the back of the Oval photograph of Keith

This is what was on the back of the Oval photograph of Keith

Here Keith is with his Uncle Alexander McDonald a fireman in International Falls.  See the post Alexander Thomas McDonald, Fireman, dated August 7, 2010.

Keith and Alex before 1915

Keith and Alex before 1915 – Keith is on the left on Alex’s lap, the others are unknown

The next picture was shared at the very beginning of this blog.  This is the one in which Miriam, Jean and Keith are dressed in Scottish outfits.  I believe these were taken in International Falls probably for some celebration, but who dressed them up is not known. Grace died in 1911 and Keith was born in 1910 eighteen months before her death, so it had to be Nellie or some other family member that was involved because of Keith’s age. If you look closely the costumes look like they are all of a different plaid? It is too bad they aren’t in color. Sigh!

McDonald Children in Scottish dress.

McDonald Children in Scottish dress.

  Keith, Miriam and Jean in Scottish dress

The time line for Keith’s earlier life is not clear, most is my guessing based on the photos that I have.  Once Ronald their father, left International Falls it gets really difficult to know exactly how long they were in Grand Prairie, Alberta and what really happened from 1915 to 1920 when they appear in Cheney, Washington.


Keith Barclay John MacDonald, father, grandfather and his love of Airplanes….

April 9, 2015

This blog was named for Keith, my dad, and his love of airplanes.  The gray background surrounding the posts is a reminder of him.  He would wear steel-gray cotton trousers with cuffs and dance around the living room to the records he played on our stereo. Sometimes he would grab me and twirl me around.

The time has come to share about Keith’s life.  Keith, my dad, was born in International Falls, Minnesota in 1910. Being younger than his siblings he went to high school at Gonzaga in Spokane.  He spent his school years from 1925 to 1929 at Gonzaga participating in several different sports and taking the mechanics course.  After graduation Keith would enlist at various times in the National Guard, the Army, and Air Corp. All this happening during the 1930’s and during the Great Depression.  While in the military he would learn about airplane mechanics. Keith would eventually become employed as a U.S. Air Force Inspector at Boeing.  He was also an inventor and a little bit of a political activist in his later years.  He would eventually make Seattle his home met his further bride, marry and raise a family.

Here is a review of the posts I have written on this blog about Keith’s early years.

Keith’s Parents: Ronald and Grace’s Marriage!,” dated February 20, 2010

Ronald and Grace McDonald

Ronald and Grace McDonald, Keith’s parents

Ronald and Grace’s Children,” dated February 27, 2010

McDonald Children circa late 1910

McDonald Children circa late 1910

A Baptism in International Falls,” dated March 13, 2010.

Keith's baptism

Keith’s baptism

Riverside Drive, International Falls,” dated March 30, 2010

Keith and brother Gordy about 1911

Keith and brother Gordy about 1911

Ronald and Grace: Family Life!” dated April 11, 2010

Ronald and Grace's children: Vivian, Gordy, Miriam holding Keith, Eddie scowling and Jean

Ronald and Grace’s children: Vivian, Gordy, Miriam holding Keith, Eddie scowling and Jean – Keith is the little boy in the middle.

Keith was born on the 13th of March, 1910 to Ronald S. McDonald and Grace Amarilla Barclay.  He was the sixth child of this couple and second son.  His siblings were: Leola Vivian (1902), Ronald Gordon (Gordy – 1904), Miriam Audrey (1906), Edna Lorraine (Eddie – 1907), Laurie Jean (1908) and Keith (1910).  There were two babies that did not survive. One was born before Vivian and is buried in the family plot in Brainerd.  The other baby girl was born after Keith and named Grace Elizabeth. She is buried with her mother in International Falls.

The 1910 U.S. Federal census is the only census where all of the family of Ronald and Grace McDonald is listed. Keith is 1/12 of age.  He barely made it into this census.

Line 21, 59/70, McDonald, Ronald S., head, male, white, 46, married, 12 yrs., born Canada, parents both born in Canada, working, can read and write, owns house. McDonald, Grace, wife, female, white, 28, married 12 yrs, 7 children born, 6 living, born in Minnesota, father born in Connecticut, mother born in Iowa, speaks English, no occupation, reads, writes and speaks English. McDonald, Vivian, daughter, female, white, 8 yrs., born in Minnesota, no occupation, speaks, writes and reads. McDonald, Gordon, son, male, white, 6 yrs., born in Minnesota, no occupation, speaks, writes and reads. McDonald, Marian, daughter, female, white, age 4, born in Minnesota, no occupation. McDonald, Edna, daughter, female, white, age 3, born in Minnesota. McDonald, Laura, daughter, female, white, age 2, born in Minnesota, no occupation. McDonald, Keith, son, male, white, 1/12 age.

Source: 1910 U.S. Census, International Falls, Koochiching Co., Minnesota, April 15/16, 1910, FHL#1374720 ED 92, SD 8, Sht#4A, pg. 7499.

I have written about Ronald and Grace McDonald in past posts on this blog. Ronald was born in 1866 in Chichester, Quebec to Archibald and Mary McDonell.  I have shared a great deal about Archie and Mary McDonell, Keith’s grandparents, on this blog in search of their story and their ancestors.

Unfortunately Keith’s mother Grace died of pneumonia after giving birth to Grace Elizabeth, about 18 months after he was born.  I doubt he knew his mother.  This tragedy even affected me for it changed the family.  I shared about the loss of Grace in the following post.

An Unexpected Tragedy!,” dated July 18, 2010

About five years later, Ronald left International Falls and took the children to Grand Prairie, Alberta where he had a store. Keith, was only about 5 years old when they left Minnesota. How much my Dad remembered of his birth town, I do not know.

R.S. McDonald Leaves International Falls!” dated October 5, 2010

The Store in Grand Prairie

The Store in Grand Prairie

Ronald’s story Continues! Revisiting Grand Prairie, Alberta and mention of Albany, Oregon,” dated January 3, 2013.

Keith and his sisters in Grand Prairie July 4, 1916

Keith and his sisters in Grand Prairie July 4, 1916

I don’t think that going to Grand Prairie was a happy memory in my Dad’s life. As you can see from the photo they all look unhappy. After Ronald lost the store to his partner’s gambling he must have headed to Albany, Oregon. Various comments Eddie writes in her Collection of Junk indicate that they were in Oregon for at least a year.

By 1920 Keith and his family were living in Cheney, Washington and it is this part of the history of the family that is closer to me through their stories and comments.  Aunt Nellie was with the family and was now helping Ronald in taking care of the children.  It is not clear exactly when Ronald’s sister joined him, but she is there as of 1920.

R.S. McDonald Family Settles in Cheney, WA -1920,” dated February 14, 2013.

R.S. McDonald Family circa 1922

R.S. McDonald Family circa 1922:  R.S., Jean, Gordon, Eddie, Miriam, Vivian, Nellie and Keith

Keith is the boy in the very front – right in the middle of the picture.


New York Wanderings: Heading Home…

October 8, 2014

After my tour of Boldt Castle and the shuttle back to Alexandria Bay and the pier, I headed to my lodging at Bonnie Castle.  They had huge signs for Bonnie Castle but I didn’t see any mention of the office so turn to the left of the sign as you enter.  I parked and went in.  It took a good 20 minutes to get to the desk and get checked in, it was crowded with people.  Getting to my room was not easy at Bonnie Castle.  I was to park at the rock wall near the entrance to the pub and restaurant.  Turn to the right and up some short steps through a door, down a hallway to another door, turn right through another door to a courtyard and then up some short steps to another door and my room was 2nd on the left.  Needless to say I didn’t bring all my stuff into the room.  I did do two loads but mixed it up with dinner.

My room was awesome!  It was roomy, with a desk, large bed, two chairs and table, a kitchenette with a refrigerator but I don’t remember a microwave.  The bathroom was huge except the door blocked the toilet.

Mostly importantly, I had a great view of Boldt Castle, and the St. Lawrence River and a door to a small lanai with two chairs.

Boldt Castle in the distance

Boldt Castle in the distance

The lighthouse

The lighthouse

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A brave boatman

The St. Lawrence River

The St. Lawrence River

Sunsets at Boldt Castle

Sunsets at Boldt Castle and one last tourist boat…

Bonnie Castle has several restaurants but the main one does not open till 5 pm.  So I headed to the pub.  I settled in at the bar and got a hamburger. It was fun to sit there and enjoy the view through the window of the river and the castle.  There was a lot of activity in the pub because it was the only place where there was food.  They let me take a glass of wine back to my room so I could enjoy the lanai.  Lovely…

Morning came to Alexandria Bay and I noticed they had turned the lights out on the Castle.  They did have them on into the night.

Morning - Boldt Castle

Morning – Boldt Castle main restaurant view

It was Saturday, September 27th and time to head to Buffalo.  My flight to Seattle was the next day so I had some traveling to do.

Breakfast was served in the main restaurant at 7 am of Bonnie Castle so I headed through the labyrinth of hallways to the main area and with locked doors I had to find a new route.  Breakfast was a buffet and the room was not busy at all. I settled in to just eat, enjoy the view and the sun rising over the St. Lawrence River.  Breakfast is not included in the room and was good and not bad at $13.00.  I’ve paid more.

I gathered my things and packed up the car and headed out in search of a gas station.  It was not to hard to find and I was soon on my way and back on I-81. The drive south on this highway was pretty easy being early in the morning and having done it the day before. I stopped again at the restaurant I had been to before at Exit #32.  I needed to take a break because I would be on I-90 west for quite a while.  It took about 1 hour and 15 minutes to get to Exit #32, not bad.  The restaurant was Good Golly..something like that!  Sort of like a Denny’s but a little nicer.

I have traveled down the eastern side of the state of New York through the Adirondacks and up and down the western side which is very different.  I would be driving to Buffalo on I-90 west which is slightly above the middle of the state.  I mostly in the upper area of New York State.

I have never been to New York City. I have seen New York City from the New Jersey airport and that is the closest I have gotten.  I have always wanted to attend a Broadway show, sit in at the Rachel Ray TV show, and dangle my feet at the New York Public Library.  I had forgotten that I had poked around some in New York City genealogy for a friend of the family and was looking at immigration records in the early 1900’s.  I suppose I should add the Statue of Liberty on my list and Ellis Island as well and the Empire State Building.  I would not be going anywhere near NYC this trip.

In 1985 I gave to the Ellis Island Centennial Commission.  It was not much but they sent me a certificate of Charter Membership which was supposedly signed by Gerald Ford?  I got a membership card as well. A nice letter signed by Lee A. Iacocca, Chairman.  I occasionally go online to see if there is anything of interest in the records, but my family all came over so early that I rarely do.  http://www.libertyellisfoundation.org/genealogy  It is probably time to donate again.

New York Counties

New York Counties

I-81 would take me to Syracuse and I really didn’t want to go through and deal with traffic in that city.  It turned out good because Exit 25A came up really quick and the lanes had gone from 2 to 3.  I turned off and came up to the toll booth, moving left to get into the correct lane and not the EZ pass lane. The man handed me a ticket and said “Have a good one.

I-90 is pretty straight and the only thing of real interest is the signage telling you what exit it is and where the service areas are.  It was very busy however, and that made it difficult to get around slower moving vehicles. Looking back in the rearview mirror and side mirror you would see a long line of cars trying to get around you.  I had a few bumper drivers on me and it was so odd because they had plenty of time to go around me but wouldn’t do it.  http://www.thruway.ny.gov/index.shtml  This is a 4 lane highway two lanes on each side with plenty of time to pass.

From Syracuse to Buffalo it was 130 miles.  I was not going into Buffalo but only to the eastern side of the airport at Exit 49.  I figured that meant I would only have 110 miles to go. Again the exits are far apart anywhere from 10 to 13 miles in between.  I came up to Exit 48 A & B and thought I would next get to Exit 49 but no I had the Ontario Service area to drive to and beyond.  I was getting impatient.

Finally, Exit 49 came and I turned off I-90…happily. I paid my $6.50 cents which surprised me and then had to get into the right lane but this red sport car was blocking me.  I wanted to go south on #78 to Genessee St. in Cheektowaga.  Yup I was in Cheektowaga!  Their website has some interesting links to a 1812 cemetery?

I stopped to fill up the car per the rental agreement and again tried to get the gooey stuff off the right side of the car to no luck.  This happened in Toronto at the Super 8.  Someone had put their milkshake or something gooey on my car and it fell and spilled all over.  It was mess.

Oh, one thing I did not mention, the Check Engine light had been on since Cornwall.  I had called the car rental company and they said I had about 1000 miles but they would spring for an oil change if needed.  If the light was steady and not flashing then I was okay?  So I had checked the oil several times and watched for overheating.  This is the second time this has happened and I really am not thrilled.  So far I have not had a flat or problems with a rental car.  The travel gods have been very kind.

I found the Quality Inn next to the Garden Hilton.  It was a funny designed Quality Inn and a little difficult to find among the other hotels.  They put me on the 3rd floor and the stairs were very steep. I was not happy but I walked over to the McDonald’s and had lunch. Food usually helps with the patience factor and on the way back to the hotel I stopped and asked for a lower floor and I got it. YIPPEE! So I moved the car, emptied it of my stuff which was a big job and had to re-pack all my things to fly home.  The room was a mess I had both beds covered but I got it all in.

Later I went over to the Garden Hilton and they had this nice restaurant in the lobby area.  This was my celebration dinner marking the end of my trip. It was a very nice steak and good.

Morning came quickly and breakfast at this Quality Inn had hot food so I was very happy.  They have a nice lobby and breakfast area.

Getting the rental car to the airport was not too bad.  The receptionist at the hotel said I could go either way when I left the hotel, left or right on Genessee.  I went left so I could turn right into the airport and followed it along. I was back at the car rental building which is on the airport grounds.

Buffalo Airport

Buffalo Airport the hotels are visible on the south side

I turned in the rental car and said goodbye to it!  I found the United counter and checked my bags.  Security was easy because I am Premier on United and so I get to go ahead.  I found the gate and settled in.  My flight was two hours away.  I had read about 3 novels this trip.  My Nook Ap and Nookcolor Reader store the books so I can reread a novel if I want.  I was content.

The flight out of Buffalo was very late and I was certain I would not make my connection in Chicago.  After landing at O’Hare, I found the Red Carpet Club for United and they told me about the Customer Service area which was down the F concourse so I stopped there and the man said “Can you walk fast you have 3 minutes.”  So I followed his instructions and once I started to recognize things I was okay.  I was moving really fast and Chicago O’Hare is not an easy airport to get from concourse to concourse.  I found B concourse and they were still loading thank goodness.  The Customer service man called to tell them I was coming.  I was huffing and puffing by the time I got to the gate. I made it to my seat and I was so happy.  The question is did my luggage, it did!  I am liking this Premier thing!

It was EPIC my trip.  My miles were 2011 the first time to Canada in 2012. This trip the total was 1964 miles.  It was a whole 47 miles less!  Still I think it was EPIC.  HA!

I was home and I was glad.  It was nice to see my hubby, my car, my cats and be in familiar territory.


New York Wanderings: Boldt Castle the grounds and the view!

October 7, 2014

Apparently, Louise Boldt found the Thousand Islands to be a place where she could relax from the stress of living in New York City and her husband’s career as a hotel man.   He managed the Philadelphia Club and later the Bellevue, and later the Bellevue Stratford Hotel.  Astor built the Waldorf Astoria and Boldt was its proprietor.  I guess George had to mediate a hotel war with the Astor brothers.  The Empire State building now occupies the site of this hotel.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_Boldt

Boldt Castle rises out of the island and is surrounded by lovely landscaping and great views.  You can get right down to the water.  The pictures will show the Castle and the other structures on the island:  The Power House at the east end of the island, the Italian Garden, Alster Tower the whimsical tower, the archway, the Tower and the gazebo, views of Alexandria Bay, the Boathouse across from Heart Island.  I spent a happy 3 hours on the island.

This is a slide show so click on one of the photos and it will open, then go to the upper left corner find the x and click that to close otherwise you will close it all out and have to come back.

 


New York Wanderings: Boldt Castle…a sad story!

October 7, 2014

Why is it that a wealthy person builds something so amazing like Boldt Castle and never really gets to enjoy it?

George Boldt built the castle for his wife Louise Kehrer Boldt.  She died in 1904 and he abandoned it unfinished.  They think he never went back to the island.  So it sat exposed to the elements until 197 7 when it was purchased by the Thousand Island Bridge Authority and then they started to restore it.  They were not planning to finish it just restore it back to when George had abandoned it. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boldt_Castle

Here are two more links to explore:

http://www.boldtcastle.com/visitorinfo/ and it is also on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BoldtCastle

George Boldt was a wealthy hotel man who knew the Astors, Vanderbilts and all the wealthy influential people of the time.  He liked the Rhineland Castles designs and that gives the style.  I thought it also had some whimsy to it and even felt like I might run into a troll or fairy if I was not careful. He and his wife had vacationed in the Thousand Island area and decided they like it there so it was a joint decision to build there.  He purchased the island changing the spelling from Hart to Heart.  If you look closely you will see a theme of hearts through the island.

This is not the only time I have been to a castle.  My hubby and I took all the tours at Biltmore in Asheville, North Carolina. I have them on my Facebook.  I probably should put them out on the web they are very cool.  George Vanderbilt built Biltmore as his home and he did get to live it in a while but not long.  He basically took a very destroyed piece of land and redesigned it with the help of the famous landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted.  I also toured the castle in Trieste, Italy called Miramare and it has a sad story.  Ferdinand went to Mexico to be their king but was shot by the Mexicans.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miramare_Castle

When you visit a home like Boldt  Castle you do have to read about the history of the persons who created it and the area around it.  I knew nothing about the Thousand Islands of the St. Lawrence River when I toured in 2012.  It was a big surprise to see the all the different sizes of the islands, some with houses and docks.  To find out that someone built this castle on one of them was too good to pass up.

On the 2nd floor of the castle up the grand staircase is a room with a movie that gives an overview of the castle history and of George and Louisa’s life. It was good, a little hokey, but worth sitting for about 10-15 minutes.

The following pictures are of the interior of the castle.  You will see the entrance, staircase, living room, dining room with original furniture, bedrooms, some unfinished areas on the upper floors and the roof area from a veranda.  The roof is very complicated.  This castle will never be finished because it was abandoned so you do get to see the structure of it.  Do notice the colors of the wall paint, one room is a vivid rosy color.

Just click on one of the photos and the slide show will open for you to scroll through.  To close look to the left upper corner for the X and use that to close the show otherwise you may close out totally.  Of course, you can stop by the gift shop at the entrance of Boldt Castle and by videos and books about Boldt Castle which would give you much more detail and professional photos…of do a Google search and click on images…

 

 

 

 


New York Wanderings: Getting To Boldt Castle

October 6, 2014

It was now about 1 pm and I had my boat shuttle ticket and was ready.  I had parked my car in a gravel parking area behind the main part of the town. There are signs for parking.  I had loaded myself up with cameras so I could just have fun.  The ticket booth for the shuttle boat to the castle was at the far end of James Street.  Notice anything?  NO FOG!

The Marina and Boats

The Marina and Boats

Docked Boats

Docked Boats

Well I least I knew where my lodging was going to be that evening.  Bonnie Castle was right across the bay.  This whole trip to see Boldt Castle was just a bit of whimsy on my part.  I had booked a riverside view room so it was not cheap but it was great!  Oh, they take your money when you reserve so be aware of that fact!

Bonnie Castle across the bay

Bonnie Castle across the bay

The shuttle boat on the right and some another tourist boat on the left.  You can do other tours, I just wanted to shuttle directly to Heart Island and back.  I was seated in the front of the shuttle boat on the right so I had a great view.  The bigger boat was very quick, it actually came back twice and moored for just a few minutes?

Shuttle Boat & Tourist Boat

Shuttle Boat to the right & Tourist Boat on the left

Heart Island is right across the St. Lawrence from Alexandria Bay.  If you lean a little over the wharf and around the building you could see it in the distance.

Heart Island & Boldt Castle

Heart Island & Boldt Castle

Heart Island Coming Up

Heart Island Coming Up – I believe this is the Powerhouse!

The shuttle boat takes you around the island going to the east.  On the north side of the island are the docks and Welcome Center.  It departs going to the west around the island.  This means you get a whole tour of the island on the water by the time your done.  Very lovely.

Tour boat is moored at the island.

Tour boat is moored at the island.

Boldt Castle rises above

Boldt Castle rises above

The welcome area

The Welcome area

 The Shuttle Boat

The Shuttle Boat

The Uncle Sam’s shuttle boat took about 10 minutes to cross from Alexandria Bay.  You spend more time waiting to get on it.  Here is the Entrance where you pay for a tour of the castle $8.50 and get hand stamped and they also have restrooms, a concession stand and a gift shop…of course!  I am a senior so I may be getting a discount.

The Entrance

The Entrance

Now for a tour of the castle and would you believe, you can take pictures!  http://www.boldtcastle.com/visitorinfo/

Note:  I have followed the St. Lawrence from Kingston to Montreal on the Canadian side 2012 and 2014.  I have been over the St. Lawrence (Champlain Bridge Montreal) and now on the St. Lawrence at Alexandria Bay in a boat. HA!  I have followed the Ottawa River on both sides in Pontiac and Renfrew County in 2012.  I have crossed over it at Pont Tachereau on my way to Montreal.  I followed the Ottawa River from Hawkesbury, Ontario to Ottawa.


New York Wanderings: To Alexandria Bay

October 6, 2014

The next leg of my journey was an indulgence.  I had learned of Boldt Castle on my last trip to Ontario in 2012 when I drove the Thousand Island Parkway and became charmed by the St. Lawrence River. http://www.visit1000islands.com/visitorinfo/?page_id=12

I love castles! So my next stop was Alexandria Bay, New York.

I headed out from Johnstown in the FOG.  I got some money at the ATM at the Key Bank and was just finishing up and wouldn’t you know it someone pulls in behind me at 7:15 am?

Anyway, I turned right on Briggs and left on Perry and found the entrance to the Johnstown Cemetery.  I drove around the cemetery and it was a large so do some research about where stones are before trying to find them.  There were two men with their dogs and chatting.  As you can see it was not a day for even taking descent cemetery photos. I am sure there is a lot of history in this cemetery.  The photos are in the morning about 7:20 am.

http://fulton.nygenweb.net/cemeteries/JohnsCem.html

Johnstown Cemetery

DSC09730

DSC09731

DSC09732

Getting a descent photo of the Mohawk River was not going to happen because of the thick FOG! So I headed out on Hwy 67 west.  I went through towns like Keck’s Center, Eppie Corners and St. Johnsville. This took me onto Hwy 5 again and through Little Falls.

It then took me to Herkimer. Yup, it did!  It is a county and a town:  http://herkimercounty.org/content and the town can be studied at this link: http://www.townofherkimer.org/  I frequent town and county sites when preparing for a research trip, they can be useful but difficult to find things on.

I like Herkimer! They had this great diner where I stopped for breakfast or rather second breakfast.  What a Kick!  You do have to pay the meter so be careful and really twist the knob to get it to take your quarter in the parking lot area out front.

Crazy Otto's Empire Diner

Crazy Otto’s Empire Diner

The Empire Diner

The Empire Diner

The Empire Diner

The Empire Diner what a kick!

I was not expecting my breakfast to be so…much!  I ate most of it…!

Three Pancakes & More

Three Pancakes & More, yeah I know cholesterol city…

I was still on Hwy 5.  In Deerfield Heights I needed to get onto Hwy 49 and that was a little tricky. The big problem was in Rome, New York.  There was a lot of construction and there is this strange U that takes you south on 49 and 365 and then back into Rome where you have to get off and drive the city to get back on 49/46 to go west.  I found Gifford Road much farther on then I expected and turned left onto 49.  I was doing just fine.

Okay, I could have taken I-90 the toll road to where I need to connect with I-81 but this was more fun.  To see the different towns along the way and just realize that New York State has a great deal of rural areas and not just big cities.  Some of these towns are lovely to see like Saratoga Springs and Warrensburg.

I have not done any genealogy in the great state of New York.  I have tried for a marriage of Solomon Goss and Olive Scott Goss in this state as suggested by a Pennsylvania Researcher who told me that they sometimes went up to New York. I am talking 1776.  I was not successful but then it was not a deep search.  I have heard that New York State genealogy is tough going.  Levi Goss he married Sophia Rummersfield in a New York county before they headed to Chatham, Kent Co., Ontario where he had a tavern on the Thames.  I wrote about all this in my blog:  Solomon Goss of Fearing Twp., in Ohio.  Levi is a son and my 4th great grand-uncle.  http://sgossfamily.wordpress.com/

Here are a few links but I am not an expert on this state so this is just be dabbling:

They have the New York State Archives in Albany, NY:

http://www.archives.nysed.gov/a/research/res_topics_genealogy.shtml

The New York GenWeb page

http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~nygenweb/

The New York Genealogical and Biographical Society

http://newyorkfamilyhistory.org/

The New York State Historical Association

http://www.nysha.org/

New York was one of the 13 Colonies so you do have to learn about Colonial history:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thirteen_Colonies

This book New York in the Revolution as a Colony and State is available on Internet Archive, hmmmm???

https://archive.org/details/newyorkrevolution01statrich

Now I could have stopped at Fort Stanwix and did consider it and there were other Forts or historical places I could have explored.  I can get diverted so I was being very strong this trip.  http://www.iloveny.com/things-to-do/history/#.VDKRiPldVqI  Let’s see they list 715 pages of historical places you could visit…So many things to do so little time!

This Hwy 49 would take me along Lake Oneida but it was still FOGGY. It was still that way in Jewell but I was seeing a little of the Lake.  Cleveland was better.  It must have been Bernhard Bay where I was able to turn off and take some photos or maybe a little further on…

Lake Oneida

Lake Oneida with a hint of FOG

DSC09740

Lake Oneida

Soon I was in West Monroe and I pulled off at the Good Golly’s for a little break before heading north on I-81.  I was pretty full from breakfast so I just had an Ice Tea and a strawberry shortcake with whipping cream. Giggle…!

Getting on I-81 was easy and I was on my way north to Alexandria Bay.  The road signs read Pulaski, Sandy Creek, Lacona, Ellisburg, Adams and Watertown. It was a 4 lane highway so I didn’t have too much trouble with traffic or tailgating.  Traffic was good except when you got near the towns of course and I was able to pass slower vehicles easily.  No FOG, Yippee!

Once past Watertown the road was pretty wide open with little traffic and it was kinda tedious because I was getting excited.  The exits are very far apart and the Garamond GPS kept telling me about rest stops and I wanted real exits.  The sign for the Canadian border said 20 miles and I was not yet to the turn off for Alexandria Bay.  Sigh, I could have come down from Kingston and visited Boldt Castle crossing the border and going back to Ontario.  I knew this but was not sure about how easy it would be to cross the border?

Exit 50N finally came up and it was just about 4.5 miles to Alexandria Bay from there and I just went right on in to the town following the signs.  It was about 12:45 pm and I wanted to get my ticket for the boat shuttle to Boldt Castle.  I paid my $8.50 and would pay for admittance to the castle grounds at the landing on Heart Island. The lady said that the boat shuttle would be back in about 10 minutes.  I was good.

Uncle Sam ticket booth

Uncle Sam ticket booth for boat shuttle to Boldt Castle

 http://www.usboattours.com/1000islands/


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