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More phone book history

January 22, 2010

Judging from the response from last week's column about names and places listed in the 1956-57 New York Telephone Company book, it ranks right up there with columns taken from the old police blotters.

Eunice Travis, the main dispenser of news at Newman's News (as in Mitzi) at 117 Main St. in Lake Placid nearly went bonkers when she saw the drawing of the Majestic Restaurant in last week's column.

She worked there as a teenager, and through the next nine years, then rose through the ranks to become one of the managers. She said she loved the Theodore family (owners of the restaurant) and was so impressed with the column, that she actually bought an Enterprise to bring home.

Article Photos

(Illustration from the 1956-57 NY Telephone Company Book)

Also remarking about the column were Paul and Cynthia Sardella, whose twin daughters, Michelle and Louisa, are two of the stars of the Lake Placid High School girls hockey team. The twins were honored for their service to the school at a ceremony in the 1932 Hockey Rink at the Olympic Center before the Placid-Oswego game.


Jan Lynch writes

"The Lynch family was well known in Saranac Lake. They owned the Carnation Bakery, located in a building behind where the Mark Kurtz' photo gallery is today. He had a sister, Nancy, and his brother's Tom and Dean were two of my best friends."

Jan lives in California and often remarks about items in the column - here are excerpts from last week ???

"Gene's taxi service in Lake Placid was owned by Gene Maquire, father of Nancy Maquire, wife of Dean Lynch. Nancy lives in Tucson and has her two children and many grandchildren all there in Tucson. I talk to her frequently.

"The Majestic was our hangout before and after a night at Freddie's. I also remember being taken outside of Lake Placid from our spot on the wall across from St. Agnes. Most of the time we hid in the shrubs until a car came and we determined it was not the police. There were times that the police brought us back to Saranac Lake; I also have walked all the way home.

"I have retired now. I am going to Dallas in a few weeks because my daughter Erin and her husband Eric are going to have my first grandson, Dean Kinkead. Erin and Eric are doing medical research at University Southwestern Medical Center. They are both molecular biologists."

Here is Jan's e-mail address:


Former SL restaurants

Many of the remarks made to me were of names and places NOT mentioned in the column, so I hasten to add that the information I used was straight from the phone book as I include the restaurants from the past, Jan also remembered Downing and Cane's and Mark Carson's Bar and Grill.


Here are some others:

The Algonquin, 33 Algonquin Ave.; The Alpine Hotel, 84 Broadway; Alta Vista Lodge, 48 Franklin; The Birches and the Brown Bear Restaurants, both located in Ray Brook; The Cedar Post, 175 Lake Flower Ave.; The Colonial Inn, Bloomingdale Road; Major Dawson's, Lake Clear; Dew Drop Inn, 361/2 Broadway; Dick and Joy's Drive-in, 35 River St.; Dickie's Restaurant, 51 Broadway; Don's Melody Lounge, 90 Broadway; Durgan's Grill, Harrietstown Road; Fitzgerald's Restaurant, Lake Placid Road; Lakeview Grill, 61 River St.; Laura's Diner, 2 Lake Flower Ave. (now NBT Bank); Miss Saranac Diner, 7 Bloomingdale Ave.; Mitchell's Restaurant, 28 Broadway, also

The Pine Grove, Loon Lake; The Porch, 153 Lake Flower Ave.; The Rainbow Bar & Grill, 14 Bloomingdale Ave.; Schroeter's Restaurant, Ampersand Ave.; The Shamrock Inn address was listed as Colby's Corners (still at the same location today, but one must remember it was then the main intersection of the highways from Bloomingdale and Saranac Lake and the site of the restaurant was the former Colby family home); The Top Hat Lounge at 81 Broadway, downstairs in the Potter Block at the corner of Bloomingdale Avenue and Broadway; I knew both owners, Abe Labas and Mike Volk quite well as they had cured with TB at 1 Pine Street, where I was a tray boy. The cottage was owned by Mrs. Margaret Gutshow, mother of John and Harry.

As the story goes, when they were deciding to open the bar and restaurant, teetotaler Mike said to Abe, if we open this business together I want you to stop drinking. Abe quit and Mike started.

And of course the most famous restaurant to generations of young people in Saranac Lake - Fran Walsemann's, later to become Bernie Wilson's, at 4 Broadway now the home of "Pink" with the address in the present phone book listed as 5 Broadway.



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