100 YEARS AGO IN WINDHAM
Eastern Illustrating photograph shows Mrs. Baker’s new cottage at the far right of the photograph.
Julia Baker Remodels Pavilion into a Cottage on Cobbett’s Pond
May 18, 1917: Mrs. Julia Baker has had her old pavilion on the shore of Cobbett’s Pond (at the lower end) transformed by carpenter W.A. Kimball into a handsome and commodious cottage. We hear she will occupy this herself for the summer and rent her spacious farm mansion. This Eastern Illustrating photograph shows the pavilion after it was remodeled into a cottage. The picture below shows Mrs. Baker’s home on Range Road with a Cadillac in the front yard. The cottage is at the far right.
Club Mirimar at Bella Vista
The famed Bella Vista dance pavilion, with its big bands and crowds was destroyed by fire in 1931. It was soon replaced by a smaller hall pictured here. Rural Oasis states, “For a short time during prohibition this building was considered the hottest place in town. It was known as the Club Mariana [sic] (Mirimar). A password was not really needed for entry, but Rene Dubois who ran the club did not want any revenue men in by mistake. Most people who filled the dimly lit hall enjoyed themselves. Dancing and food were advertised on the sign outside, but after you were allowed in you could buy a drink and watch the burlesque show. Before long the reputation of the Club Mirimar reached the authorities and the club was closed forever.”
The new Club Mirimar hall at Bella Vista
Dinsmore Cottages, Cobbett’s Pond, Windham NH
An original, real photo postcard, of this view sold on e-bay last week for $102.50. Does that seem a little over the top to you? My grandfather rented cottages and later tent platforms which paid his taxes and put extra cash in his pocket. The people who spent their summers here have fond memories of their time on these shores. In fact, a gentleman stopped by our office just last week to say hello and reminisce about the summers he spent here with his family in one of the tents as a child. Of course this was my stomping grounds as a child. I remember after school ended for summer, I rarely had shoes on my feet and spent the warm, happy days barefoot. Much of the time was spent in the water and we all liked to swim out to the giant rock that sits just under the water, where we could stand up and show-off.
EASTERN ILLUSTRATING COLLLECTION
The Head of the Pond
This photograph shows the “Head of the Pond.” The three cottages in the center were constructed very early. “Methuen Cottage” was built in 1896 and “May’s Cottage” was built in 1898. Searles Castle can be clearly seen on the crest of the hill in the background. At the time of this photograph was taken neither Dunkan Beach or Armstrong Beach are not yet in operation and the land where they would eventually open is still marsh and woodlands
Eastern Illustrating Company
COBBETT’S POND COLLECTION
Over the summer months, I will be presenting a series of photographs taken by the Eastern Illustrating Company, on Cobbett’s Pond in the 1920’s and 30’s. You will see the interior of “Club Mirimar,” the notorious speakeasy at Bella Vista and many views taken along the shoreline of the pond. The first few photographs presented were taken on the hill at the “Head of the Pond,” where Granite Hill is located today. If you see a view you like, the Penobscot Marine Museum will make fine art print copies for you.
SHADOW LAKE AND “SHADOWLAND”
“Shadowland” dance hall – pavilion on Shadow Lake. Cottages along Shadow Lake Road in Salem NH.
SHADOW LAKE AND “SHADOWLANDS”
“Shadowland” was a day resort on Shadow Lake. It was similar to many others in the area and featured a large swimming beach, store, with a pavilion over the water.