The Summer Resort that Started on a Shoe String

Written by Mrs. Fred (Bertha) Coburn

Part 1

On May 23, 1923, my husband, Fred Coburn, with the aid and assistance of his father, bought 40 acres of standing timber on Long Lake, 4 1/2 miles east of Fremont. His father had been living with us for a year and working at Berkey and Gay factory. All winter they had been talking about what could be done with this property (to me it sounded like a "pipe dream") but I realized Fred had been born on the other end of the lake property and his father surely knew what the lake was.

Fred had opened his first barbor shop at 700 Ottawa Avenue, March 1, 1916, with hair cuts 25 cents and shaves for 10. It took a lot of courage and perserverance to make a living for a wife and two children. First World War was on, and there was no electric, just gas lights, straight razors and a soft coal stove, with a tea kettle on top, to heat his hot water for shaves.

In 1919, he moved across the street (711 Ottawa) into a shop and the next year got the house that joined it. October 4 we all moved in, by then there were four children. Business imprved. Prices went up, 35 cents for harcuts for men and 25 cents for children. The street cars ran right by the place and probably was the reason business improved on the side of the street. In May, 1921, Fred bought his first car, a 1921 Model T Ford. Two years later he and his father went up to the lake to look the property over and see if it was for sale. It was on the south end of Long Lake and the outlet of the lake ran through the grounds making a point out into the lake. That is why he name it Point Pleasant Resort later, but there was a lot of work to be done before it could be given that name. First a road had to be built from the main road into the lake. A farmer with a horse and a scraper cut off the bumps and by dodging the pine stumps, managed to get to the Point, where a space was cleared enough to put a cottage on it.

When I said the place was started on a shoe string, I meant it!! If it hadn't been for the help and confidence or our relatives and friends, we never would have made it. My brother owned the lumber business at Kent City, 25 miles from the lake. He agreed to furnish the lumber for the cottage and take 3 lots, when we got it surveyed, for part payment. Another brother, who was a carpenter, built the cottage with help from Fred, Sam and Claude. The lumber was hauled up by horse and wagon. Then the surveyor came and surveyed the lake frontage - the lots were 50 x 100. There were 20 lake front lots and a nice area for picnic grounds. Fred advertised the place by printing all over the Model T Ford - "Point Pleasant Resort, 4 1/2 miles east of Fremont, Newaygo County. Lots for sale and boats for rent, free camp grounds." Driving back and forth from the barber shope to the lake, the car attracted attention and lots started to sell at $100 - $10 down and $10 per month. Many lots were exchanged for labor or material. Fred's father started clearing the area along the lake front. He would cut the brush and the children and I would drag it up on the road and burn it. The four children were then age 3 to 9 years.

Besides cutting the brush and clearing the grounds, my father-in-law, Charles Coburn, cug out the pine stumps by puttting two sticks of dynamite under them and so blew them loose. He would put a pry pole under the stump and I sat on the pole so as to raise the roots up so he could see them and chop them off. Later the stump was sawed and cut up into kindling, which was used in the cook stove in the cottage. I baked my own bread, and the day I baked, I gave the children a gunny sack and said, "Go and find a lot of pine knots for I need a real hot fire to bake bread!" They came back dragging a big bag of knots. In payment for their work, they each got a slice of nice warm bread and butter.

I had no transportation when at the cottage, as Fred had the car to get back and forth from the barber shop to the lake. He worked at the shop sixdays a week alone. The first year, he worked until 10 pm on Saturday and then drove up over rough bumpy roads wiith the Model T Ford. We got along fine, by going to the farmers for vegetables (potatoes, carrots, sweet corn, etc) also eggs and chickens. Every night the children and I walked up to the nearest farmer, Gerrit Smoose, and got our milk. We took 2 half-gallon fruit jars along and waited for Gerrit to milk the cows. The children really got a kick out of watc hing the procedure. They had thought milk came in bottles from the milkman. I hadn't realized how much they had missed, as I was raised on a farm and was milking cows at the age of 13. Mrs. Smoose strained the milk and filled our jars. It was still warm when we got back to the cottage, so I poured it into a large pan and dipped it with a long handle dipper until it was aired and cooled. I had seen my mother do this and then it had to be pput in the coolest place. We had no refrigeration, so I put the jars in a tub and pumped water from the well and the cold water kept the milk through the next day. Each night we went through this ritual going to the farmers (about a half-mile walk) and got the milk and vegetables. The farmers gave us all the apples we wanted, if we picked them up off the ground. "Windfalls" they called them. When we ran out of butter we ate apple sauce on our bread. The woods were full of wild blackberries and huckleberries. I picked and canned them, also canned sweet corn and by picking it myself at the farmers, it was nice and fresh. I cold packed it in my wash boiler on the cook stove.

When washday came, I carried water from the lake and heted it on the cook stove in the boiler, with a hand bench wringer and washboard; everything came out fine. The old flat irons also heated on the stove and took care of the ironing.

The first summer we had no refrigeration at all; but, that fall Fred and his brother built an ice house. Saw dust was put in and then in the winter when the ice got about 20 inches thick, they cut it out of the lake with a saw and with ice tongs and a toboggan sled hauled the ice blocks, which were abou 20 x 40 inches plus the thickness, and packed them into the saw dusta and kept it until the next summer, when we got an ice box.

The first few years the place was really wild. The children having lived in the city until we got the cottage, really enjoyed exploring the woods and the wild life. They saw animals and birds they had never seen before. The first summer were were there, a bald-headed eagle sat on the top of a big tree in front of our cottage. But the next year when Fred got some boats to rent and people started coming around, the eagle flew away and we never saw it again. There were several whooping cranes flying over the lake and many wild mallard ducks simming on the lake. It was beautiful to see how the baby ducks followed the mother all around the lake.

Don, our yougest son, like to fish. At the age of five, he learned to dig his own worms, bait the hook and catch the fish. At first he didn't like to take the fish off the hook because it wiggled so. I told him if he wanted to be a fisherman, he had to learn how to do everything. I liked to fish too and learned when I was quite young. We lived on a farm a mile from Kent City. A creek ran through the pasture. It was quite deep by the bridge over the road, and I caught blue gills, horned ace and perch, also some bullheads. One day fishing I caught a black snake, but he got away as soon as he hit the ground.

Don and I always planned to have a nice mess of fish for Sunday morning when Daddy would be there. Pancakes and fish was the regular Sunday morning breakfast. We seldome had less than 14 people for meals on Sunday. Fred's sister, Inez, and her husband and two children came a lot, as there was so much work to do. Fred's father was there all summer, but he couldn't do everything alone. The first thinkg they had to do was build a dock. We didn't have any boats yet, but Fred rented one from Mr. Sims (the farmer across the lake). He had four boats to rent and a picnic grounds with a well on it. We didn't have a well for the first two weeks, so for drinking water someone had to row across the lake, which wasn't very far, and get a pail of water from the well on Sims place. I would use water from the lake for all other uses. We kept the resevoir on the cook stove full at all times so we had hot water.

Fred and his brother, Sam, got the pipes and drove our well. They hit water at 20 feet, as the lake was fed by springs, it was easy to find water.

A big log lay across the yard between the cottage and lake. A big oak tree must have blown over and had laid there a long time. I had to climb over it every time I went for a pail of water from the lake. That was one of the first jobs to be done. With a cross cut saw, Fred and Sam and their father finally cut it up into stove wood size and cleaned the front yard. It really improved the looks of the place.

Part 2

One day a neighbor whose farm joined ours saw Don come in with a nice string of fish. Mrs. Meese said to Don, "If you will bring me a mess of fish like that, I will give you a chicken for them." So Don took a nice string of blue gills to her, expecting a nice hen in return, he liked chicken and biscuits, but instead of a hen, she gave him a 6-week old baby chicken. She said, "Now you feed it good and it will catch all the grasshoppers and crickets in your yard." The chicken would come and became such a pet that it would sit in Don's lap. Mrs. Meese was right, it chased grasshoppers alright, but I think it ran it's legs off during the summer. When Labor Day came, we had to go back to Grand Rapids as the children had to be in school. Fred said, "We can't take that chicken back to Grand Rapids, the street car will run over it." So he killed it and we had it for dinner, but Don wouldn't touch a bit of it. He said, "You can't expect me to eat my pet."

Our oldest son, Bud, came home one day with a dob. He said a woman gave it to him. It was a female, a real nice small bench Collie, and so we let him keep it. The next summer when we went to the lake Teddy had five puppies. The children enjoyed them so much, but wen it gottime to go back to Grand Rapids, Fred gave the pups to anyone who wanted one as we couldn't take them back to the city. People who came up to rent a boat to go fishing admired them (they were real cute) and we felt they would all have a good home. Every summer Teddy had pups usually in June, so it worked out fine. The children could enjoy them through the summer.

One day I saw one of the pups down by the lake. It looked like it was trying to catch something. The pups liked to chase frogs, toads or grasshoppers, anything that moved. but this time it was a crab. It had sum up to the shore and was moving right at the water's edge. I went down to see what the pup was after, just in time to see it wallow the crab. I picked it up and tried to get the crab out of the pup's mouth but didn't succeed. The crab's sharp claws must have hurt the puppy badly. I tried to get it to vomit but that didn't work, so I tried and enema but that didn't help either. The puppy didn't die right then, but wouldn't play with the other puppies. Because it was weak, the other puppies kept picking on him. I took him in the cottage and put him in a box and tried to get him well, but we finally had to have him taken care of.

The first summer at the cottage everthing was so wild. My father-in-law was still chopping brush and clearing the lake frontage. There was a big brush pile on the picnic ground and one evening the children and I were on our way to the farmers to get the milk and one of the children hollered, "Look at the snake!" We all said yes, we see it, but we were all looking at a different snake. They were sure thick around there, but we weren't afraid of them. One day Don found one about 8 inches long and was carrying it in the pocket of his shirt. I didn't like that.

The fishing was real good in Long Lake. The next year after we got started, Fred had 10 boats and the word got around about the big pike and bass that were being caught. One day two men came in and rented a boat. They were not out fishing long when they came in and asked if I had a rake they could borrow, said they had lost artificial bait with hooks out in the weeks on the other side of the lake. I have them my garden rake. Half an hour later they came in with a 45 inch pike. The were carrying it with the rake handle through its gills. It took both of them to handle and carry it. They said the fish was wallowing in the weeds where they were looking for their bait. They eased up to it and it it with the rake. It stunned the fish but also broke my rake. I believe that was one of the biggest fish I had ever seen at that time. A short time later a man came in a 6 pm and rented a boat for the evening. Half an hour later he was back. I went out to see what happened. He had a big pike. He said he just threw out his trowling line and started for the Point just a little way across the lake. He said the fish hit it as soon as he got into deeper water. He knew he couldn't land it alone in the boat, so he kept on rowing until he got to shore and hung on to the line and pulled the fish right up on the bank. He hit is with an oar and stunned it. He was so excited. We measure the fish and it was 42 inches long. He had a Model T Ford roadster with a small trunk on the back and he put it in there and said, "I got to go home fast, my brother-in-law won't believe his eyes when he sees this." It was a cheap fish for him as boats rented then for 50 cents.

There was only one cottage on Long Lake we we first started there. Tibbets owned it, and it was on the farm Fred's father had owned years before and where Fred was morn in 1895. They built next to the flowing wall, so they didn't need to drill a wall. My father-in-law told me that well was where he got all his water when he lived up on top of the hill, known as Hines Place. He said he took a stoneboat with two barrels on it and drawn by a horse and hauled water fromt he flowing well up that steep hill. He must have had to do it every day with eight children and the need for washing, cooking, etc.

The same year we started ont he Point, a "Y" camp from Evanston, Illinois, bought 40 acres on the east side of the lake. The first year the boys had tents but later built cabins that would sleep six boys. The boys would often come over to our place with their canoes. The next year Fred built an outdoor stand where we sold candy and ice cream. Fred would bring a five-gallon tub of ice cream up Saturday nights, when he had finished at the barber shop. We now had the ice house so we kept the ice cream alright. We sold a lot of ice cream cones to the "Y" boys across the lake. Anyway it never went to waste. With four children and the company, we always had on Sundays. Our children always wanted to bring some of their friends up for weekends. Most of them had never been to a lake and seeing the wildlifein the woods and fishing and swimming was a real treat to them.

There was a small farm house by the road when we purchased the land, so it gave us a place to say in and get our meals while the road was being built and the place cleared for a cottage. The next year Fred, with the help of his brother, Sam, and his cousin, Lee Peckham, tore the farm house down and used the materials to build a cottage on the Point next to ours. We rented it out for three years. In the pring of '27, the farmer next to us called Fred and said the fence was broken down and his cattle were getting over into our side and asked if he would come up and help fix the fence. Fred took a man with him, and they went up the night before. The next morning he built a fire in the cook stove (they had sausage and pancakes to fix for their breakfast), but it took a little while for the stove to get hot enough to make pancakes, so they went up the outlet a little ways to see if the suckers were running. Early in the spring they could spear the suckers. when they came back they noticed the cottage was on fire. It had started by sparks getting into the wood box in fron of the draft on the cook stove. They couldn't get inside the cottage. Fred had parked his car right up next to the kitchen so they started to move it but were so scared Fred couldn't start it so the pushed it over next to our cottage. The wind from the west was very strong and blew the flames away from our cottage. Fred said it was completely down in half-an-hour. The farm house was quite old and the siding was cedar wood so it burned fast, so no sausage and pancakes that morning.

As all the lake front lots were sold by 1926, Fred had all the grounds along the outlet surveyed, so there were many more lots to sell. I never thought anyone would want to build way back in the woods but they have. In 1965 a dam was put in the outlet, and it was dredged out so it was a channel deep enough so people could launch their boats and row them down to the lake, making it almost like a lake front for the people who built along the outlet years before.

Part 3

There are always some bad and unhappy experiences in everyone's lives. The third summer at the cottage Bud was ten years old. He was playing with the tire pump (he liked to see the dust fly when he pumped it), but the plunger came out and his hand went down on the tube. It split his thumb open. I was so glad Fred was there that day with the car. He took Bud into Fremont to the hospital. Infection got into the bone and Bud lost his left thumb. We called him Buddy until he was quite a big boy. The first night after he was injured, I noticed he was having a bad time getting to sleep. Finally he called out, "Mom, I can't get to sleep, I can't suck my thumb." I said, "Try the other one." He said, "I did, but it doesn't taste good." Because of the infection in the bone, Buddy suffered all summer and didn't get a chance to swim as much as he would have liked to.

It took the first summer to get the grounds cleared so one could see the lake and see what the lots were going to be, and it was not until the summer of 1924 that the place was surveyed. Three cottages were built then, and it began to look like a summer resort. Fred's brother, Sam, built one but sold it in 1928 to the Davis family of Hinsdale, Illinois. Mrs. Davis came up and stayed all summer. She had four children the same ages as ours, and they sure lived it up. Mrs. Davis still owns the cottage and comes up every summer. There was a big tree over in the Meece's pasture and the children all carved their initials on it. They called it the carving tree. As the years went by and more and more children came to the lake, they each had to carve their initials or names on the tree. After 40 years the tree met with a disaster. The Meece's had both died years before and Standish McDonald bought the farm for pasture land for their cows. That was fine for awhile, but a boy at on of the cottages had a dog, and he used to take his dog over to the pasture and chase the cows. He got a kick out of that, but McDonald's son did not. He came over and asked that we keep dogs out of his pasture because it was making his cows jump the fence and come over to his farm which was across the main road into Fremont, and the traffic was dangerous to the cows. The boy refused to obey and finally McDonald's took the cattle out. One day my grandchildren were at the cottage, and they went over looking for the carving tree, and it was gone. Farmer McDonald got even by cutting the tree down. To the children that came to the lake in the summer, that was the first thing they wanted to see, the carving tree, to see if any new names were on it. It as a great disappointment to them when it was gone.

The years were going by fast; more cottages were built, but there was no electric in there for 18 years. Everyone seemed to get along with the kerosine lamps and the gasoline lamps and lanterns. Most of the people used their cottage just weekends, but Mrs. Davis and I stayed all summer. We washed clothes together, canned (fruit and vegetables which we could get at the farmers) together and enjoyed it all.

Then came the stock market crash of 1929. Things started to change. Money was scarce, and it got worse. Soon it was welfare and WPA. We were lucky we did not have to go on welfare, but we lost the cottage on the Point by mortgage foreclosure. We felt it was better to hang on to our home and the barber shop, so the cottage had to go. Our last summer on the Point was 1932. By then our oldest daughter had graduated from Creston and was working at housework. Bud graduated in 1933 and joined the CCC. Don went into the barber shop to learn the barber trade from his Dad. He stayed with his Dad for 30 years in the shop.

After losing the cottage on the Point, we didn't know what to do about the boat business. We had all the lots along the outlet and back in the woods that were clear of any mortgage. Fred brought all the boats back and piled them up by the street. It was a good thing the surveyor had put that street in when he surveyed the first plat. Fred built a dock there in the spring of '33, and we started all over again. This project was tougher than the first. Money was scarce and you couldn't borrow a dollar from your best friend or brother. I told Fred if he could borrow a tent from his cousin, I would go up and stay in it and take care of the boat business. He thought about it and one day he saw a pile of hardwood flooring that had come out of a factory piled up across the street from the shop. He went over and asked the man if it was for sale, and the man said he could have it for $5.00. Fred took it and hauled it to the lake in his trailer. First he made a floor, 10 x 12, then used the rest for siding, leaving a space up around the top for some screen. He put in rafters, but didn't have money to get roof boards, so he borrowed a tent from his cousin and put it on the top. Believe me it got us through the summer. Marian, the yougest daughter, then 13 years old, stayed with me during the summer, and we rented a few boats and at that time every penny counted. At least we hung on to our business. Fred was not a carpenter and every thing was done from "scratch." The next summer someone wanted a building torn down. It was called an ice jitney. The man said if Fred would tear it down, he could have all the lumber free and that is how he got the lumber to pu another room on the one room shack. He had managed to get enough lumber somewhere to put a roof on the first room and took the tent off before the winter snow came. The two rooms worked fine for six years. In September of '38, Fred had more ideas, and he had learned quite a bit about carpenter work, so heplanned to enlarge the place. First he built a cement foundation 12 x 34 feet; large enough to take care of the two rooms and another bedroom. He got our two sons and two son-in-laws to help him, and they jacked up the two rooms, put some rollers under them and started to push, pull and turn the two rooms around until they got them up on the foundation. Fred wanted to cottage to face the lake when done, that is why it had to be turned around, as well as lifted up and put into place on the foundation. As I watched them doing that work all by hand, I thought we are really living as the pioneers did. The enxt weekend Fred and Bud built a patio 10 x 15 in front of the two rooms. They mixed the cement by hand and was working hard trying to get it troweled and smoothed over. It was 10:00 at night, and they were working by the light from a gasoline lantern. The cement turned out real good and two years later a porch was built over it.

As soon as Fred realized he could make a new start back where we were now, he tore the ice house down and moved it back to our new place and continued putting up ice every winter unticl we could get electric appliances.

The two rooms were all set on the foundation in the fall of '38, and the next spring Fred bult a kitchen and back porch on it. It took all summer as he was only taking one day a week off from the barber shop, but his brother, Sam, and cousin, Lee, helped him and in turn Fred helped Lee with the log cabin he was bulding. In 1940, Fred added another bedroom and the front portch which kept him busy all that summer.

In June of '41, there were 10 cottages built, and Consumers Power Company agreed to come in with electricity. It was goodbye to our kerosene lamps, but I kept them anyway for we often had electrical failures from electric storms and the lights would be off for hours.

We had a disappointment with the electricity because of the wa breaking out in the Decmeber of '41. All electric appliances were frozen, and we couldn't get refrigerators for the cottages, so Fred still had to cut ice and pack it in the ice house until 1946.

During the war, lumber was hard to get (that is good, dry lumber). Driving back and forth from the lake to the barber shop, Fred had noticed a large pile of lumber in a farmer's yard. He knew it had been there two years, so it would be dry. It was in the rough, just as it had been sawed fromt he trees and was knotty pine. Fred asked the garmer if it was for sale. He said, "Yes, it was anad he could have the whole pile for $200.00." Fred took it and with his trailer, he hauled it to Newaygo to have it planed and sanded, but the man said he couldn't sand it as he was too busy, so Fred hauled it to Grand Rapids to a lumber company and had it sanded. They couldn't tongue and groove it, so he had to take it to another place to get it completely finished, so he could put it on the walls of the cottage. The summer of '46 was spent finishing the living room with beautiful knotty pine. As he was working along, he built a knick knack cupboard for my clock, radio, etc. He also built in some book shelves under the chimney. The chimney was in the center of the room and took care of the cookstove in the kitchen and the heating stove in the living room.

Part 4

Don had been working in the barber shop since 1934 when he went in to learn the barber trade. Fred was now able to take a little more time at the lake by 1940. In 1944 Don was drafted into the war and was gone two years. During that time, we coudn't go to the lake as Fred worked alone in the shop, so our daughter, Geraldine, took over the cottage and boat business. She had two boys, 3 years and 8 months. When Don had to leave to enter the war, his little girl, Judy, was 3 years old. I offered to take care of Judy so June, his wife, could work. Four years before, when all of our children were married, Fred remodeled the upstairs, which had been three bedrooms, into a furnished apartment. It had a bathroom, kitchen and combination living room and bedroom. So, June took the apartment, and I took care of Judy.

It was amazing how Fred could do all that carpenter work at the cottage and at home, for his trade was being a barber since he was 18 years old. He kept on learning more about construction work as he worked at it. In 1947 Fred saw an ad in the Fremont paper about some farm buildings the county wanted torn down, so they could get to a gravel pit. The lowest bidder for the job could have all the lumber just for tearing them down and removing all the refuse from the place. There was a two-story house, a large frame barn and a 14 x 20 chicken house. Fred put in a bid for $200.00 and got the job. In the spring of 1948, Fred got a man to help him, Lloyd Dunlap; he had a cottage there on the outlet, and he wanted another lot and some lumber to build an addition on his cottage. He agreed to work it out and so helped to tear down the buildings. The lumber was hauled over to our place on Fred's trailer, and Lloyd would spend his evenings pulling out nails.

As Don was back in the shop by then, Fred could take three days off fromt he barber shop and work at the lake. In the summer of 1950, Fred decided to use the lumber to build a two-stall garage with an apartment over it. As the electric was in and the cottages didn't need ice anymore, Fred tore the ice house down and started his new project. This was the biggest construction job he had undertaken. He first built the forms for the cement wall 24 x 28, then mixed the cement himself to make the wall. When that was done, he had gravel hauled in to fill up and get ready for a cement floor for the two-stall garage. Before that he laid piping in the gravel for water to supply the garage and the upstairs apartment (bathroom and kitchen). He had learned how to do his own plumbing as well as carpenter work. The cement floor was put in by a "Redi-Mix" construction man. Any work that could be handled alone, Fred did himself, but he had to have help putting up the rafters and roof boards. Our son, Bud, helped with that. The roofing when chingled was a two-way job, Fred stayed on the roof, and I carried the pieces up the ladder to him. I also helped nailing on the sheeting. We managed to get all the roofing and sheeting on and the window openings covered with tarpaper by November 7, 1950, before the first snow storm. Then we closed up for the winter and came back to our home and barber shop until the next spring when a new job was waiting. It took him all that summer to put on slate shingles on the outside and lay the floor in the upstairs apartment, and it took three years of work to finish the whole job. He built his own kitchen cupboards and installed the bathroom, finished with knotty pin througout and made nice big closets off the bedrooms. Fred's brother, Sam, installed the electric wiring as he was a licensed electrician. Sam also helped in Fred's next project, which was the Trailer Park. The apartment was ready to ren by '54. It took three years to build as he was still working in the barber shope three days a week.

As soon as the apartment was finished, Fred started in on the Trailer Park, which originally was the picnic grounds when we first started on the point. Fred advertised free camp grounds if you rent a boat at 50 cents a day. People came up with their tents and camped a week or more. The fishing was real good. Fred furnished picnic tables and built a stove in the center of the grounds. He gathered a lot of small stones to make the chimney, then went to a Fremont tin shop and ordered four sheet iron stoves to fit up to the chimney. It was set on a cement floor 12 x 34 with a picnic table on each end. At the time, anyone could find pine knots or wood lying around to build a fire, and they could fry their fish and make coffee. The stove was there about 20 years, Fred tore it down when he started the Trailer Park. It was the first licensed trailer park in Newaygo Coungty. He was given a special set of rules on how to build it, and he had to follow them to the letter. first he had a well driven, then his brother, Sam, helped him lay the pipes to supply water to the trailer sites. Therer were 12 in all, plus the utility building which had ladies and mens toilets. The septic tank was 8 x 12 feet deep. Our two grandsons, Dan and Jim Weller, dug the hole for their Grandpa, and we were very proud of them. Sam helped build the utility building and also put in the electric service to all the trailer sites. In the process of building the utility building, Fred was using an electric saw he had borrowed from a neighbor. He had shut the saw off and thought it had stopped running, but when he picked it up his finger hit it and was cut off. Sam took him to the hospital and had it taken care of. It was his right hand, but it didn't stop him from working in the barber shop, or in finishing the work on the trailer park. Our son, Don, surveyed and designed the plat for the trailer park, and it was recorded in the White Cloud city hall. The park was completed and ready to rent the sites the summer of 1955. We had no trouble renting all of them. One man stayed the whole time from 1955 to 1970, when we sold the trailer park to Harold Weller.

When are cottage was all finished in 1941, I opened up a store on the front porch. Fred made a sliding window at the end of the porch so the children could be served fromt he outside and not have to come into my cottage. I sold soft drinks, milk, candy and cigarettes, etc. I had the store for 30 years until Fred died in 1971 of cancer. By then I was 75 years old and decided to give up the store. I still rent boats and my apartment over the garage.