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TI Life in February 2013

This month’s issue is special. 

When Hunter Grimes sent his An essay which is not all about hunting and guns…, I realized right away this was a MUST READ.  And I got just as enthused when Bill Munro agreed to provide Nature/Outdoor Photography… may be just what you’ve been looking for!

History is served though Anthony Mollica’s The Era of the Hutchinson Day Cruiser, John Carter’s Patriot Chronicles: The Hickory Island Incursion; and Alan Lindsay’s Point La Morte – or Lindsay Point’s Place in History.

Tom French brings Appreciating the River in Winter; and Judy Orr shares Bucky, a special winter visitor.

Robert S. Pakan sent a special thank you note to TI Life which resulted in his writing  A Thanks Leads to Memories.

Kara Lynn Dunn gives us a“heads up” in Quilting the River Region…for those who love to create, inspire and admire the arts.

I present TI Life to the rescue…  which demonstrates how much TI Life is appreciated and  I describe the new fee structure for Parks Canada in  The Fees go up, but “How Much”?

And I also introduce a new photographic collection through The Collection moves on… that has been shared with Queen’s University and the Arthur Child Heritage Museum in Gananoque.

New Tab on TI Life – Photos
View three slide shows on Steamships, Tour Boats and Hotels on our new TI Life Section on the Tab:

Note:  Use “Play” on each slide show.

Do you have postcards or photographs to share?  Send information to

New Contributors

Bill Munro - Nature/Outdoor Photography… may be just what you’ve been looking for!
Bill Munro, a photographer with a keen eye.  He and and his wife Judy, are well-known “birders”. They summer on Murray Isle and winter in West Palm Beach, Florida, his family’s home town. They volunteer for several organizations and share their love of the River with friends and family.

Judy Orr - Bucky, a special winter visitor

Judy Orr moved from Ottawa to the St. Lawrence River when she retired after 37 years teaching. She lives with her husband David, on the Thousand Islands Parkway in the winter. This will be her 49th year at their summer home on Mudlunta Island. Both Judy and David often share photographs with their friends and neighbors.

Robert S. Pakan - A Thanks Leads to Memories

Robert S. Pakan is a recent graduate of the University of Rochester
where he studied Clinical Psychology and English.  He currently holds
a position working in the Department of Surgery at Georgetown
University Hospital in Washington, DC where he also resides.  Robert
spent many years of his childhood summering on Wellesley Island and
continues to enjoy spending time at his family’s island home during the
summer months.

River Community’s Sad News

In January we learned of the deaths of Myrna Clark and William (Bill) Browning.  Both played a major roll in promoting the Thousand Islands.

Myrna A. (nee Benson) Clark, died on January 18, 2013 at her home on Treasure Island near Kingston.  Myrna and her husband R.W. (Bob) Clark were responsible for developing Worthington Park and Aunt Lucy’s Dinner House in Kingston and the St. Lawrence Cruise Line with its popular Canadian Empress.  Kim Lunman wrote about the Clark’s in her King of the Empress,  in February issue of 2009 for TI Life.  Since 1981 this popular cruise ship has introduced thousands to the River.  Bob Clark often told friends that Myrna was the real boss… and certainly served as his first mate.  She will be missed by family and all River friends.

William “Bill” Browning III, died on January 2, 2013 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.  Bill, as he was known on the River, spent summers on Lyndoch Island near Ivy Lea.  His was a life of accomplishments  beginning as a co-founder of radio station CKLC in Kingston.  He was president of Canada Dry bottling works and Vice President of Readers Digest International.  However he is best known on the River for donating the first island for land conservation.   In the late 1960s Bill gave Ironsides Island to the Nature Conservancy to help preserve and protect the Great Blue Heron.  He also served as President of TIA (Thousand Islands Association) and I can personally attest to his drive and magnetism as he served as membership chair during my term as President.

At this time, I would like to tell you my favorite Bill Browning story as Bill was very proud to give Ironsides as a heron rookery but he also loved to down play this generosity.

“One day I was walking down the main street in A-Bay when two gentleman were coming the other way.”  he told me.

One stopped and said,  “Hey are you the Browning who gave that island to save the Herons?”

“Why, yes, I am,” said Bill proudly,  thinking “at long last I am going to be recognized…”

The man stopped, and Bill put out his hand.  But the man did not take it up – but rather said,  “Well thanks for nothing… those GD birds “leave a mess” on my dock everyday…” and he kept on walking.

Readers’ Exchange 

We received some wonderful comments this issue such as:

MUSKIES---Believe it or Not, by Lynn McElfresh

Do you know how to tell if a fisherman is lying? When they tell you they caught a Muskie. Seriously, since 1958 I still haven't seen one in a real person's hands on the St. Lawrence. Lots of pictures. Lots of stories. But no real flesh. Muskies and the Abominable Snowman are two sides of the same coin. Of course I haven't seen a walleye until two years ago either. Fish On! Rob Dickover (Goshen, New York (Winters) Blind Bay wishful summers )

Winter’s update from Round Island, by Richard Withington

I was sad to see the old girl leave Canada, but I'm glad that she's made it safely to her destination.  I've traveled a lot of miles on that ferry, but I'm not sure that I would have been up for the voyage that this crew took on! The idea of taking the ferry out into the ocean was both exciting and terrifying; especially given the time of year. The steering problems that they experienced brought back memories of days of school missed due to the ferry not running for one reason or another. One particular time when we were leaving the Island the rudder locked as they were preparing to straighten her out for the crossing (the ferry had to turn shortly after leaving the dock to aim for the mainland); the crew spent the better part of two hours using the current/wind and short bursts of engine power to get the ferry back to the dock. Unfortunately (for us school kids) it was fixed later that day. Terry McGinn ( Amherst Island )








RiverQuest Discovered, by Susan W. Smith

When I first met Paul Malo, it didn't take long to realize that this remarkable man was far more than an historian and professor emeritus. He was a visionary. He believed the Thousand Islands to be exceptional but under-appreciated and was determined to make a difference. Incredibly generously, (with the help of Robert Charron), he organized several exhibitions, at which we would present together, with Paul revealing the islands’ extraordinary Gilded Age, reminding people of what this place had once been, while pointing to my images to convey what it still is. TI Life, now championed so effectively by Susie Smith, was another of Paul's strategies to make a difference, created with the sole intention of building a greater appreciation for the place. Paul would have been overjoyed by RiverQuest and its potential to make more impact than any previous initiative. He’d instantly understand how the towns and attractions here will reach a wider audience with greater impact by supporting each other while presenting their collective assets to the world. The villages in Tuscany or Provence are little known on the world’s stage, but by pulling together, these regions have become tourism Meccas. Thanks to another visionary - Simon Fuller - the RiverQuest initiative (and its Aquatarium, a $21M facility to showcase the very best in the region), the Thousand Islands has its best ever opportunity to achieve international acclaim.  Ian Coristine ( Raleigh Island )

Restoring an Outboard Engine, by Dave Whitford

I believe I have this exact motor in my boathouse in the 1000 Islands, its been sitting idle for the last 10 or 12 years. Maybe this will motivate me to revisit & rebuild mine! Your Mercury looks fantastic! Great job! Thanks for the inspiration! Mark Bond ( Bethlehem/Hill Island )


1000 Islands 130 Years Ago, by Robert L. Matthews, narrated by Jan Eliot

The images of "dining out" brought back memories of Grandmother Parkhurst's stories about earlier days in the 1000 Islands. As she told it, shore dinners were a big part of the summer experience. Canoe Point and Picnic Point on Grindstone Island into Eel Bay were the preferred locations. Both places ideal for the evening meal then to watch the sun set before heading home. As a reminder of that bygone time I have a dozen "shore dinner" Ironstone plates left from those days that still find occasional use. Deane Parkhurst ( Olathe, KS )

Frederick G. Bourne and "The Things That Matter Most", by Patty Mondore

This is the most interesting reading I have done in a long while... of course having been a pastor at Jorstadt castle you can understand why I love this story of Commodore Bourne.  It really means a great deal to me...Rev, Harvey B. Jones (Lake Placid .... Florida)  


  FACEBOOKBe sure to check our facebook page throughout the month,  as we post information and photographs .

  • Follow us on Twittertwitter 2.  Send us your tweet tag and we will start to follow you.
  • Do you write about the River (next to, from above, or below), then consider submitting an article.
  • Let us know what your like about TI Life (or dislike!) so we can share more in the future.

THANKS – to our photographers who answered our call on Facebook for pictures of Winter 2013.

By Susan W. Smith, Editor

Special thanks to our editors David Ray, Georgia Barker and Jane Taylor.  We also thank those who leave comments on our articles or ask questions. The more the better.
  • Summer seating by Janet Sullins, Clayton NY

    Summer seating by Janet Sullins, Clayton NY

  • "View of Rock Island Light from the pavilion at TI Park " by Dennis McCarthy

  • TI Park colors in winter or summer by Dennis McCarthy

    TI Park colors in winter or summer by Dennis McCarthy

  • Ann Rodenbeck catches an Eel Bay Pike

    Ann Rodenbeck catches an Eel Bay Pike

  • The Rodenbeck's take no chance on freezing the beverages

    The Rodenbeck's take no chance on freezing the beverages

  • Wild River by Janet Sullings

    Wild River by Janet Sullings

  • Ice forming on the bedrock flats after the snowmelt by Janet Sullins

    Ice forming on the bedrock flats after the snowmelt by Janet Sullins

  • Gananoque on January 31, '13 by Mark Russell

    Gananoque on January 31, '13 by Mark Russell

  •  Ice in boat and ice sprayed park, by Janet Sullins

    Ice in boat and ice sprayed park, by Janet Sullins

  • TI Park in winter by Dennis McCarthy

    TI Park in winter by Dennis McCarthy

  • The River freezes by Dennis McCarthy

    The River freezes by Dennis McCarthy

  • Wild river sunset by Janet Sullins

    Wild river sunset by Janet Sullins


Posted in: From the Editor
Please feel free to leave comments about this article using the form below. Comments are moderated and we do not accept comments that contain links. As per our privacy policy, your email address will not be shared and is inaccessible even to us. For general comments, please email the editor.


Steve Daub
Comment by: Steve Daub ( )
Left at: 9:17 AM Friday, February 15, 2013
I am saddened this morning to read of Bill Brownings passing. Had the great pleasure of knowing him and spending time in his company on the River. He will be greatly missed in the islands.
Skip Tolette
Comment by: Skip Tolette ( )
Left at: 11:23 AM Friday, February 15, 2013
Susie--another wonderful edition!! I don't know how you do it---but, we appreciate it---Skip
Larry Kewin
Comment by: Larry Kewin ( )
Left at: 11:36 PM Saturday, February 16, 2013
I beleive the photo titles "Clayton's new pavilion by Dennis McCarthy" os actually a picture taken from the TI Park Gazeboo ? Looks like Rock Island light in the background. Beautiful picture none the less!
Susie Smith
Comment by: Susie Smith
Left at: 10:08 AM Sunday, February 17, 2013
Thanks to Larry Kewin and Dennis McCarthy, I have fixed the title on Dennis' photo. This was all MY fault. Dennis even pointed out my mistake before we published but I did not realize that was the photo he was referring to. Bottom line... I need all the help I can get, and I love it! Thanks to everyone who shares their photographs and those to look at them!

Susan W. Smith, Editor.
John McDonald
Comment by: John McDonald ( )
Left at: 8:36 PM Tuesday, February 19, 2013

On YouTube there is a 1916 song by Al Jolson, "I sent my wife to the Thousand Isles". The lyrics are quite funny "...she'll spend a week on every one and she will be back in twenty years..."

Found the song by accident and until then had never heard f it.

Keep up the great job that you are doing.