Voices of Saranac Lake: Helen Munn
Today we’re featuring Helen Morgan Munn on the Voices of Saranac Lake! Helen (1931 - 2010) spent most of her life in Saranac Lake, where her mother took the fresh air cure for TB. In an interview with Tammy Morgan, Hellen talked about her mother’s experience with TB at Gabriel's Sanatorium and the State Sanatorium at Ray Brook. She shared about some of the misadventures of her brother Dewdrop Morgan and spoke about the family farm. Helen’s parents ran the Morgan family farm. They had 426 acres and milked 40 cows, by hand and by machine, and delivered to restaurants, cure cottages, and Fish Creek campground. To read the transcript of our interview with Helen visit https://www.hslstories.org/munn-helen.html
The Porch: A retrospective
It's time for our weekly Cure Porch on Wheels retrospective! In many ways, the Cure Porch on Wheels began with this photo. In the fall of 2010, Historic Saranac Lake staff heard about a project by Bryony Graham at Salem Artworks. Bryony had built a model of a Victorian porch on a trailer and traveled rural upstate NY. In 2011 Executive Director Amy Catania (pictured above) had the opportunity to visit Salem Artworks and learn more about the Bryony's traveling porch. And so began the idea for what would become the Cure Porch on Wheels.
Drawing on the American cultural tradition of the front porch as a public and private community space, we wanted to create an intimate venue where residents and tourists alike could celebrate arts and heritage. But this venue wouldn't be just any porch! We wanted to create a model of one of Saranac Lake's defining architectural features and symbols of local history, the cure porch.
Today we are featuring William F. Madden Jr. (1928 - 2013) on the Voices of Saranac Lake! We interviewed Bill for the Oral History Project back in 2010. The conversation, which ranged from bootlegging to tuberculosis, centered around the family business. Bill’s grandfather ran a delivery business that grew into Madden’s Transfer and Storage. Bill spoke about the early days of the business and its expansion when his father bought a Model T Ford in 1914. When Bill was a junior in high school, Madden’s bought the 1931 Curling Rink on River Street for use as a storage facility. In the interview, which takes place in that facility, he describes the dances that used to be held at the curling rink and talks about some of the antiques there at the time of the interview.
To listen to the interview and read the transcript visit https://www.hslstories.org/madden-william-jr.html
The Porch: A Retrospective
We’re approaching the one year birthday of the Cure Porch on Wheels' first outing! Looking back, it’s amazing how far this little mobile museum has come. The dream for the Cure Porch on Wheels started way back in 2010. The original plan was to build the Porch on a flatbed truck. Over the next few weeks we’ll be doing a little retrospective on how the Porch came to be. Today we have an early design sketch and one of the first design mock-ups of the Cure Porch on Wheels!
Introducing: The Voices of Saranac Lake! Historic Saranac Lake’s oral history project works to preserve the voices of our community. Every Saturday we will be featuring a different community member on our facebook page! Read a little about them here and head over to our website www.hslstories.org to listen to their interview!
Today we’re featuring Nancy Howard Heath! We interviewed Nancy in May of this year, as part of our Saranac Lake in the Time of COVID project. Nancy was one of the many volunteers who helped sew personal protective equipment for medical workers Adirondack Health. “I figure that’s the least I can do. … This is how I can help.” She sewed some 88 PPE head covering for Adirondack Health in addition to many masks.
Nancy is also the 2020 Winter Carnival Queen! She has always loved Winter Carnival. When Nancy was 11, she met the Winter Carnival Queen, Miss New York, in the ladies room at the Pontiac Theater. “I couldn’t believe my sisters were talking to the Queen just like she was a regular person.” Of her own experience as Queen, Nancy said, “It’s truly been an honor. I have loved every minute of it. I don’t know if I can say thank you enough. … It will be one of those wonderful memories that will be with me always.”
Listen to Nancy’s interview on our website: https://www.hslstories.org/heath-nancy-howard.html
From the Porch
We're posting all the latest news, videos, and stories from Historic Saranac Lake's oral history project and Cure Porch on Wheels here. Stay tuned for Talking Points on Sunday, Live from the Porch on Tuesday and Saturdays, and other weekly offerings!