I hope you enjoy theses clippings found in the July 18, 1895 edition of the RANGELEY LAKES newspaper. The world is a bit crazy right now, so take a minute or two to spur your imagination as to what Rangeley was once like and be sure to have fun making some great Rangeley history of your own! Who knows, maybe someone about 127 years from now will publish it!

(Bill’s comments in Italics otherwise the copy has been reprinted just as it appeared in 1895).

Camp Among the Clouds

Rangeley, July 14th.—Prof. Frederick V. Coville, Department of Agriculture, Washington, D.C., with Frank Hewey, guide, have lately been the guests of Martin L. Fuller, at Camp Among the Clouds, Saddleback Ponds. They went over the new trail just completed, to the summit of Mt. Saddleback. Prof. Coville found many Arctic Alpine plants and showed me Greenland chickweed, Alpine holly grass, Mountain cranberry, Arctic rush, Arctic pinks, etc. and lots of others, the scientific names of which I do not remember. His aneroid barometer gave the altitude 4400 feet above sea level. He was highly pleased with his trip and was surprised to find such a large portion of the mountain so far up above the timber line and such good traveling on the summit, there being about two miles in length and one-half mile wide of bare ledge with nothing to obstruct the view. They could see the whole of the Rangeley Lake and Dead River regions, and away to Farmington, Weld and other places too numerous to mention. They found a miniature pond on the summit and a spring of very cool water in the saddle.

(Frederick Vernon Coville was an American botanist and curator of the United States National Herbarium (1893-1937). He was Chief Botanist of the United States Department of Agriculture and was the first Director of the United States National Arboretum. He made numerous contributions to botany and helped shape American scientific policy at that time on plant and exploration research).

From the article entitled “Local Paragraphs”:


The summer boarders are late this season, but the hotels have all their rooms booked for the last of this month and all of August. (To this day, so goes the tourist driven economy, so goes Rangeley).

Many Rangeley folks took the narrow gauge line to Farmington to attend the “well advertised” Sells Bros. Circus.

Sells Brothers Circus was the best advertised show of the season. (Hmmm? I guess the show itself was not all it was cracked up to be.)

A little excitement on Saturday morning was gotten up, by a couple of dogs who imagined they wanted to fight. (Hilarious that THIS would make the paper).

The Rangeley Mineral Spring water is gaining in sales, those who have used it know its good quantities and continue it. (And as Poland Spring might say…You ain’t seen Nothing Yet!)

The rain Saturday caught lots of hay out. It had threatened rain so many times of late, that farmers had begun to think of the old wolf story, so kept on cutting. (Just imagine the work necessary in the time before mechanized farming the man hours required to cut the hay with a sickle, rake it, pitch fork it onto a wagon and then pitchfork it into the hayloft of a barn! So YES, rain which can cause a crop to mold was a BIG deal and thus newsworthy).

In the hearing Monday, regarding the two gallons of alcohol libeled by Sheriff Esty, Justice Smith ordered that it be held and turned over the country (dumped on the ground) as the law directs. Mr. Ross appealed the decision. (Truly a crime of wanton waste by the government!)


(Below a story from away, that shares the common amusement by the locals at the expense of the greenhorn sportsman).

A Boston Nan’s Adventure with a Bear

He was new to the woods, and his nerves lacked the steadiness that is so necessary to personal courage. He had an elegant fishing rod which must have cost a handsome figure, and many yards of silk line with which he expected to make such artistic “throws” that the eyes of the countrymen would stick out in wonder. Having been taught by an expert in the privacy of his Massachusetts home, he thought he knew how to do it. It was so near nightfall when he got into camp with his guides that he had time for little more than his bearings. But early the next morning he was astir and thought he would take a run down to the lake while the guides got breakfast. He walked leisurely through the dewy forest, putting his rod together and adjusting the line as he went. He ran over in his mind the instructions in the manner of holding his line, lasso-like, to make a throw, and reeled it off in loops, about fifty or sixty feet of it, so as to be all ready for a cast when he came to the shore. His pleasant anticipations were suddenly interrupted by back object that came with long strides into the path a few feet ahead and rose upon his haunches, sniffing the air with the peculiar sound the hunters call “whistling.” His whole attitude seemed to say, “I smell the blood of a Boston man.” With a shriek of terror, the fisherman turned and ran for the camp. His gold-mounted fishpole got between his legs and alas broken in pieces, and the silk line— well, when he broke out of the woods into the presence of the guides, his broken rod dragging behind him, they unwound him as well as they could and in about half an hour got him free of the tangled mass. He was frightened nearly out of his wits, and nothing would do but they must pack up and leave the woods at once. He made a beeline for Boston, and won’t visit Maine again till the bears are exterminated.

Have a great week everyone and don’t let them bears spook you as you make some great Rangeley history of your own!

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