July 16, 1906 – Growing Fond of Lake Housatonic
Lake Housatonic is getting more popular every year and one sign of the appreciation with which it is regarded is shown by the great number of people who are camping out along the banks and who make almost daily trips as far as Squantuc, Zoar Bridge, Otter Rock, the Log Cabin1, Stevenson, and even further up. Since the first of this month2 hundreds have camped along its banks and a great number of working people, who have heretofore gone to far away pleasure resorts, have passed their vacations on the lake, and have returned regretting they could not spend more time there. At the present time the banks on either side of the water are well populated with pleasure seekers.
Everybody is enthusiastic. Men who have traveled considerably and have been up the Hudson, to the Catskills, to the Adirondacks, and in Main, and out west say they prefer Lake Housatonic as a pleasure resort to any place that they have ever been.
An Old and True Saying
Distance lends enchantment is a true saying, and it is applicable to Lake Housatonic. It is so near Derby, Ansonia, Shelton, and Seymour that the inhabitants of these communities do not realize what a treasure they have lying at their doors. A well known citizen of Derby, whose boyhood was spent in the Adirondacks, says that he always wondered what brought tourists to those mountains, for while he lived there he failed to see their fascination. He said that the people of Derby seemed to have the same unappreciative spirit he had.
The river is a large body of water, deep and broad here, shallow there, the current being swift in one place and slow in another. It flows between rich fields of corn and hay, and fine meadow land, between heavily wooded sections and grassy hills, which rise sometimes gradually and sometimes abruptly. Along either bank are cold, bubbling springs of the finest water that can be found anywhere.
It contains the sportiest of fish, including green, black, and rock bass, which afford the fisherman the best of sport. The river is an ideal body of water for sailing, canoeing, rowing, or for rides in power boats. The scenery is magnificent.
Beauties It Can Offer
The lake has been here for years3, yet until lately its beauties, and the pleasure that it can offer to one and all have gone unrecognized, which is a mystery, for people from this locality have been pouring year after year into the famous resort throughout the country without a thought for Lake Housatonic, which was ready to give them everything that any other like resort could furnish.
It looks, however, as if Derby people were beginning to aware to the joys they have been passing blindly by for so many years. This year the lake has been crowded, camping parties are consistently breaking camp and pitching camp, fishermen are visiting the shores each day and there are more boats being used now than there have been in all the history of the lake. Row, sail, flat bottom and round bottom boats, as well as canoes and launches, are to be seen on the waters in great numbers any day of the week, but they are more numerous Saturday afternoons and Sundays. People even snatch a morning or an afternoon or a night off and go sailing on Lake Housatonic, and they always express themselves as well satisfied with the pleasure that they set out on their trip.
In fact, there is no reason why the lake should not become more popular each succeeding year. A party of campers who spent their first vacation above the Log Cabin said on returning that they would spend any summer vacation on the lake, and a man who had drunk beer all his life and who likes it said that while he had had the magnificent water from the springs near the lake he never thought of beer and would be satisfied to get along without it permanently.
- The “Log Cabin” appears to have been on the Shelton side, in the area of today’s Indian Well State Park.
- At the time this article was printed, most Valley factories were on summer vacation shutdown.
- Lake Housatonic was formed when the Ousatonic Dam was completed between Derby and Shelton in 1870.