Sunday, July 31, 2011

Watertown-Alexandria Bay-Thousand Island

The purpose for heading into northern New York was for two reasons, one, to see the St. Lawrence Seaway and the Thousand Islands, and two, to see the Adirondacks and Lake Placid. Lake Placid is still to come, but we did visit Thousand Islands.

We took a Thousand Island Ship Tour, leaving from Alexandria Bay.

We got there early so we could get good seats up on the top deck.

This little house is located on one of the smaller islands. They say it was built by Mr. Boldt for his mother-in-law, so it is called the mother-in-law house.

Looking at Boldt Castle from across the bay. At the end of the tour we will get off there and visit the restored castle before returning to Alexandria Bay.

This home was built by a man from Colorado. He owns a home down in Texas, in the Colorado Mountains, as well as this home. All the homes are identical. Asked why, he said he wanted to feel at home whereever he goes. Rumor was, Alan Jackson almost bought this house last year, but the deal fell through.

I'm glad I'm not driving the boat. I could get lost in all these little islands. Actually there are over 1800 islands in this area of the St. Lawrence seaway.

The shortest international bridge in the world, only 46 feet, but each of these two islands are in separate countries, Canada and the U.S.

Boldt Castle is located on Heart Island. This building is the only building actually lived in. It was the home of the Boldt family while the castle was being built. George C. Boldt started work on the castle in 1900, but abrubtly stopped work following his wife's death in 1904. It was never finished and Mr. Boldt never stepped foot on the island again. Only 3 floors of the 5 floors of the castle were complete at the time of Mrs. Boldt's death.

The castle had its own power house and generating station.

The house itself was six stories and 120 rooms with 365 windows.

A picture of the castle during winter when the St. Lawrence Seaway is frozen over.

The stained glass dome over the staircase. The Seaway Authority now owns the Boldt Castle under the stipulation all fees and revenues must be returned to the castle for the purpose of restoration. The castle lay in ruins for 73 years and vandalism and storms destroyed much of the buildings. They have been restoring the ruins for over 20 years and are still not through.

The parlour as it would have looked and likely been furnished in the early 1900s. The dining room and 3 bedrooms, the ballroom, indoor pool and staircase are all restored.

The grand staircase.

Mr. Boldt's yacht house was across the water on Wellsley Island.

Saying goodby to the Boldt Castle and the end of our Thousand Island Tour. What a great day.


Diana said...

Wow, that looks like a beautiful place. Why haven't I been there? I'll have to add it to "The List."

Barbara and Ron said...

I guess the water level doesn't change. What a cool tour. I never even heard of the 1000 Islands.