Postcards index

Local Area Postcards

While the following cards don't feature Onteora, they should be of interest to those who have passed this route on their way to camp. Larger scans will be provided as time permits.

The Acid Factory
The Acid Factory, Willowemoc, NY

If you've studied the history of Onteora or the surrounding area you are probably familiar with the name Stoddard Hammond. He was one of the early owners of the land where the camp is today. Hammond was also a major player in the areas tanning business. This is a view of his acid factory on the Willowemoc. A history of the factory can be found here.
Arrival of the US Mail
Arrival of the U.S. Mail, Grooville, N.Y.

While not an Onteora card, it's interesting to see that Grooville was once a real town! Here's more information from Robert Oldmixon: That building served as Ranger Bill Donahy's family temporary home 1956-57 while the current home at the main gate was built. It is located just before the entrance to the lower lake road. By the way, this one way road was the only entrance to camp in 1956 and for Operation Igloos of 56 & 57. Pulling off in the mud to let an oncoming vehicle pass was risky and a pain in the butt. The current road from the rangers house was cut out of the woods in 1957.

Babbling Brook

Arrival of the US Mail
Babbling Brook, approaching Grooville, N.Y.

Dated August 9, 1907, this card features the stream we all know so well from our drives up to camp. The message on the rear reads:

"Dear Matilda: Am up here on my vacation, and am enjoying myself very much. How are you? Let me hear from you. Don't know where you are, so am sending this home. Beautiful country here. Your friend, Lillian Steuber"

The card was postmarked in Craig-e-Clare, another vanished post office in the area, and was addressed only to "Miss Matilda Koehler, Springland, Long Island." I've never heard of Springland and couldn't find any references to it.
Beautiful Scenery Beautiful Scenery near Grooville, N.Y.

A variation on the prior card. Images were often licensed to more than one publisher. This one was published by Hillig Pub., Liberty, N.Y. and was printed in Germany. Catalog #1049.
Grooville Grooville, N.Y.

This undated card shows quite a pile of wood piled off the side of the road. It would be interesting to match this angle today and see if those houses are still there.
Grooville Grooville, N.Y.

A variation on the prior card. This one was published by Otto Hillig, Liberty, N.Y. and was printed in Germany. Catalog #32981.
Lodge House Lodge House, Lake Uncas, Grooville, N.Y.

It's quite surprising to see how many cards there are for Grooville, especially considering the size of the place! Here's another one. This was apparently a hotel or inn.
Near Grooville

Arrival of the US Mail
Near Grooville, N.Y.

Another card showing that Grooville was once a real town. Postmarked there on July 1, 1924, it shows a car passing a horse-drawn wagon. This is probably along the road leading to Onteora. The message on the rear reads:

"Dear Uncle Will. I am having a fine time. I have been riding a bicycle. I can not bring you back any trout unless I can go a fishing in a lake. (signed) Howard"
Roon Bros. Factory Roon Bros. Factory, Grooville, N.Y.

This was a lumber mill, not a tanning factory as has been reported on some sites. I believe it was located next to the stream at the spot where the camp mailbox stood. A number of us explored the ruins in the late 1960s and it was full of unfinished church pews. Some of them found their way back to camp and were put to good use in the staff housing areas as benches. The factory was interesting in that the machinery was driven by a Hupmobile, with all sorts of belts laying around that had been hooked to the remnants of the car at one point.

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