Skaneateles, 1869

On June 18, 1869, the Episcopal Bishop of Central New York wrote to his son:

“My dear boy, You will remember this as the place of beauty, lying seventeen miles southwest of Syracuse, which we were to have for our rural retirement, and to which you were sometimes to walk of a Saturday?  Well, I drove over the road yesterday with a fine pair of sorrel horses, fresh from the stable, and a light open barouche, having for companions a former Governor who lives here and two doctors of divinity (Clarke of Syracuse and Wilson of the Cornell University), and a splendid ride it was, along noble slopes, covered with thriving farms. But, although you have got a pretty good pair of legs and know how to use them, I think you would find them a little tired at the end of the walk. The Village nestles in a Valley, on a hillside, at the end of a lovely lake – tho’ the whole region is high and open to the light. As we drove in just before sunset nothing could be more perfect in appearance. The centre of the lake, surrounded by graceful shores, partly wooded and partly dotted with settlements, was still, and reflected the sunlight in many brilliant and more delicate colors. The little boats lay on the water, with their sharp outlines, and here and there a man was pulling across with his oars.Then as we walked home from the little Church down by the water-side, at ten o’clock, after a very animating service, the moon was bright, and we had a scene of another kind, but equally picturesque.”

— From Memoir and Letters of Frederic Dan Huntington, First Bishop of Central New York (1906) by Arria Sargent Huntington


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