What follows was found on page one of the August 20,1896 edition of the RANGELEY LAKES newspaper.

(Editor’s Notes are in italics)

Upper Dam

I will not relate the details of each day’s sport, for a very lengthy article would result, as almost every day furnished an item of interest. I will merely mention some of the largest catches. B. G. Ackerman made an extraordinary catch between the hours of 10 am and 5 pm but resting from twelve until two. He landed twenty-four trout weighing thirty-nine pounds, the largest one weighing six pounds two ounces. On the same day J. B. Watkins, he secured a large can of his favorite bait the ‘Garden hackle’, (worms) made an unusual catch of fine-sized fish, the largest weighing five and one-half pounds. The last day we fished E. E. Suffern caught two trout before breakfast time x o’clock, the larger one weighing seven pounds two ounces and the smaller one five pounds four ounces. The larger one was a remarkably lively fish, at times sulky, and a determined fighter. Twice he ran around a snag at the bottom of the lake, and was each time loosened by careful management. Finally, he was towed into very deep water, and after a contest of half an hour, tired sufficiently to roll upon his side and be netted. The next fish hooked was the smaller one, and the struggle with him began within five minutes after the conclusion of contest with the other. The fish were beauties, both as to shape and color, each being males. During the ten days’ stay of our party we caught over two hundred trout, and returned many that were not severely hooked, and weighing less than one and one-half pounds, to the lake. Frequently, as we dropped one of them overboard, we pitied those Nimrods who whip a stream from daylight until dark and are very much elated if they catch one weighing half a pound, while with us it was the exception to catch a half pound trout. At the round-up it was found we had taken one trout weighing 7 pounds, two ounces, one 6 pounds ten ounces, another 6 pounds eight ounces, 7 more than five pounds, not to mention any weighing less than five pounds. As they were all spread out together preparatory to being packed in boxes of moss and ice for shipment, on the morning of our departure, they certainly presented a very attractive appearance. One that would gladden the heart of any angler. Some old guides who viewed them said they never saw as fine a lot of fish taken from the pool by any party before.

(It’s fish stories like that which make me wish I had been born in the mid-19th century and to have experienced the quality fishing that made Rangeley the finest brook trout fishing destination in the world. But never do I long to have been born in an earlier time when it comes to MEDICAL technology and treatment).

“Sixteen pounds of Rangeley Trout” -a 19th century postcard from the collections of the Rangeley Lakes Historical Society.

Fred Ashton Loses an Arm Near the Mooselookmeguntic House

A sad shooting accident and a narrow escape from a more serious one, happened at Camp Houghton on Mooselookmeguntic Lake last Friday afternoon. It seems that Fred Ashton and his sister Elsie had been out on the lake, Miss Ashton had stepped on shore and Fred in removing his double-barreled gun from the boat, took it by the muzzle, the hammers caught and both barrels exploded, the shot tearing the right hand nearly to pieces. Miss Ashton was standing in range and the charge passed so near her head that some of the shot passed through her hair. Dr. H. W. Wells, of the U. S. Navy, stationed at N. Y., was in the vicinity and rendered what aid he could till the arrival of Dr. Badger, with his surgical instruments when arm was amputated just below the elbow.

(Below an astonishing revelation found in Mrs. Etta Dill’s “A Cozy Corner for the Ladies” section via a recipe for solving the dilemma presented by packing an unexpected lunch. Was the egg salad sandwich invented in Rangeley?)

Sandwich Without Meat

If an unexpected lunch box must be prepared and there is no meat available for the sandwiches take the yolk of a hardboiled egg and mash it smooth with a tablespoon of melted butter; add half a teaspoonful each of salt, white pepper, and mustard and one-quarter of a pound of common cheese grated. Then stir in’ a scant teaspoonful of vinegar and spread between thin slices of bread. Such sandwiches will be hailed with delight.

(Here below are just three of the dozen or so “newsflashes” found in this edition from the big city just south of Rangeley)

Phillips Locals

Beedy’s telegraph line from Farmington is approaching slowly.

(And you find your slow internet connection frustrating?)

The center of attraction Thursday was at the railroad station after the arrival of the 1 o’clock train. There, came on that train a “bridal trunk,” -anyway, ono of the cards attached said: “I’m a bride”, another announced, “We are married.” There was a drawing of a loving couple with wedding bells and a cupid. But the happy couple didn’t come. There was a crowd awaiting the train at night, and again they were doomed to disappointment, but they have the pleasure of looking over the trunk just the same.

(Lost luggage? Early honeymoon? Ditching the in-laws? An unsolved mystery never to be solved.)

Bathing seems to be a fad.

(When do we ever see a one-line “news item” like this in a newspaper today? I for one am grateful that for some, this “fad” caught on).

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