The Extended Family

Lucy tells the stories of her extended family and the times they had together, especially in Harbor Beach, Michigan.

Summers at Harbor Beach, MI

  • Meanwhile we were going to Harbor Beach every summer. My grandparents have a cottage, and the cousins are all there. And we have wonderful summers there. There is a clubhouse, and everybody has dinner in the clubhouse. It was wonderful, wonderful food. There were big family tables, and everybody knows everybody. There’s a big swimming pool. You’re on the lake but nobody ever swims in the lake, but there were little sailboats. My best friend’s name was Tracy. My cousin who was my age was Susan, and my grandfather would get us mixed up and he would call us both Slucy because he couldn’t tell us apart. We did sort of look alike. There were a lot of cousins. Aunt Juliet had 5. Aunt Betty only had 2. And my mother had 3. We had reunions, and we had good times. The kids wouldn’t always eat at the clubhouse. Sometimes the kids would eat on the back porch of the cottage. And they had a sleeping porch on the second floor. There was a screened-in sleeping porch. There were like 3 cots. My dad would come for a little while and mother would come with us. They were great summers. We lived at the swimming pool. There was a swimming pool right along the edge of the lake. You would go there and stay in the water all day until your skin was all crinkly. The club burned down, and they built a new one a few years back and I haven’t seen it. All the houses were log. People had ice boxes on the back porches, and somebody would deliver a chunk of ice. Even when people had refrigerators, at Harbor Beach, they still had ice boxes. I don’t know why. I mean we had electricity.

  • Elizabeth and Kenneth Crawford (Uncle Ken) took it and they used it. They came and spent the summers in Harbor Beach. We have had one big cousin reunion. It’s (the house) been sold. It belongs to the association. We would drive from Larchmont to Harbor Beach, and we would have to go through Canadian customs. They would always say, they’d roll down the window and say, “Is everybody American? Is everybody born in the United States in this car?” My father would say, “Yes,” and I would say, “Daddy, you’re lying!” But, you know.

  • My grandfather had gone to medical school when he was 40 and had 3 daughters. He was a dermatologist. He was very well thought of in Lansing Michigan, and he was also involved in civic things in Lansing. His wife was Maggie Bartholomew. She was this tiny little bird of a woman. Perky. A housewife. To my knowledge, I don’t even know if she went to college. But all three of his daughters did. My mother went to University of Chicago. She was bright. Grandpa was very serious and spent a lot of time at his desk with encyclopedias and crossword puzzles. He was very academic - I don’t know if that’s the right word. He wasn’t intellectual, but he was always looking at books, reading books. I have a stack of my grandfather’s letters. I think a few of them start “Dear favorite daughter’ and most of them start “dear daughter”. They were just folksy. He was very bright. He was a physician. He was a multi-faceted person. He loved to garden. He loved bird watching. He loved nature. He did crossword puzzles every single day of his life. My mother was in South America when most of these letters were written. I told you the first 11 years of my life were spent down there. They are priceless. You almost can hear him talking when you read them. I was glad that they didn’t get discarded.


Dear Favorite Daughter

Kate and Ned

  • My mother and father were great, great people. You know, we could bring anybody home to play, and they would be welcomed. That was true even when we had boyfriends in college. Anybody that was a friend of ours, they welcomed into the household. My father was not strict, but I remember one guy I was dating who went to Trinity College in Hartford, and he came downstairs in his bathrobe in the morning for breakfast, and my father sent him upstairs to put his clothes on. As a matter of fact, he gave me his fraternity pin. I was driving to college every day, and I put the pin on my sweater after I left the house and then would take it off (before I got home). I’m not sure why but they just didn’t think I was old enough. When you were pinned in those days, it meant you were going steady, and they didn’t like that idea.

  • They moved from Larchmont to Vermont. They opened a business – they opened a store called Carriage Trade. My father gave up this job that he hated after we were all educated, and they moved up there and they bought a barn and a house across the street on route 7 - a house that they made into another kind of store eventually. They had a store of gifts and artwork. They were the representatives for the local art people, and they sold fabrics. My mother and father went into business. My mother wrote these wonderful ads. And then eventually, they lived above the store for about 2 years, and then they built a house way back on the property. They had - I don’t know how many acres - 70 or something – with a pond. We used to go up there when the kids were growing up. Carriage Trade is something else now. It’s not Carriage Trade anymore. I’ve got pictures and postal cards of it.

  • They sold off the business, and they moved to Southbury Connecticut to a retirement community. They had a house, then they started having ailments. But they lived there quite a long time. I think they retired in their 70s, and they didn’t die until they were in their mid to late 80s. My mother died in the Waterbury Hospital. She had the same thing I have. She had Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. But she had a different kind. She had it for years. I think she had follicular lymphoma, so she would have lumps removed. I think she had it for 10 or 15 years. And then she got where she had to have platelets. They put her on chemotherapy, and the chemotherapy killed her. He died first, and she died just a few months after. She just lost her will to live. My father died of colon cancer in New Jersey in a nursing home right near where we lived.

  • They had a store up in Vermont. They were very, very committed, and it was open Saturdays. But we would go up there and have Christmas, and they would come down. They closed the store in the wintertime for quite a while and they went - or maybe they had somebody else running it, I can’t remember - but they would go to Portugal almost every year and buy stuff for the store. They went to the Algarve. They did a lot of traveling. They went to Europe. They wouldn’t go on an ocean liner – they’d go on a smaller boat – they only have 2 or 3 cabins and you get to know the people and you eat with them every night. They were adventuresome. They spoke Portuguese fluently because they lived in Brazil.

  • I am like my mother. I look like my mother. I sometimes see myself walking by a store window, and I think that’s mother, you know. She was wiser than I am. She was a very wise woman. If I send you a letter or two, you will see from her writing that she was very wise. My mother was fantastic. She was funny. I forgot to mention that. Mother and daddy both had good senses of humor. They were devoted to each other. They had a very, very close, loving relationship. I mean, my father had a stroke at the end of his life, and she never got help or nurses. She just took total care of him and he was very debilitated. When he died, she died three months later. I mean, she was sick but she just gave up.

  • We got together - my brother had died so it was Joan (his wife) and Margaret and me. We had a lottery system. They kept getting the number that you got the first choice - they got number 1 - and I kept getting number 3. And, my sister said, “This just isn’t fair.” So, there was one necklace that I wanted so badly – an amethyst necklace - and she got it. And it was a long, long amethyst necklace. So, she took it to a jeweler and had it cut in half. No, I got everything I wanted. I have a lot of things like beautiful Mexican bowls that mother brought back from Mexico. I had that Portugal pitcher that got broken. I have some furniture that she wrote notes on the bottom. I have a footstool. I don’t think I have any big pieces of furniture but there was a footstool and my father at some point restored it, and mother made a needlepoint top. My mother did needlepoint. She made a needlepoint top and she’s written a note on the bottom that says, “I am not sure who this ever belonged to. It might have been grandma or great grandma.” But she has written a cute little note. So, I have kept it. You know, everybody says, “What do you have that footstool for?” and I wouldn’t give it up for anything.


Kate and Ned’s 50th wedding anniversary

Aunt Dorothy and Uncle Harvey

  • We went to Harbor Beach to sort of spend time with Grandma and Grandpa. While my mother was there, she got very sick and she had to be taken to Detroit hospital, and she had a hysterectomy because the tube between her ovary and her uterus had blocked off. She was very sick, and they operated on her. It meant that my sister and I who had been enrolled in boarding school and college had to get on a train and take a train to go back to the east coast and get ready for school by ourselves. Now, Mother was sick, and we were frightened. The train we got on was full of soldiers so, we sat up all night long in the last little 2 seats of the train - with our legs close together, and our arms close together. Sitting there. Not sleeping. Because we were in – it wasn’t a troop train - but it was just a lot of soldiers. I just remember that night. We went to my Aunt Dorothy’s house. My Aunt Dorothy was my father’s sister, and they had a house in the adjoining town which was named Mamaroneck. On the water. With a big boat. Aunt Dorothy got us ready for school, and then we took trains up to school, I believe, because my mother was sick.

  • Now let me tell you what happened with Aunt Dorothy and Uncle Harvey. I told you that they had a boat. He was the commodore of the Larchmont Yacht Club which is a very famous yacht club. He won Bermuda races. He was known for his prowess in sailing. He had a new boat built, and they went down to the Bahamas with this boat for the first time they had ever sailed it. He took his wife, and his son who was newly wed (just graduated from Dartmouth with 2 babies). I mean not that newly wed but they had 2 infants. And they went down on this cruise. Also, another couple that were friends of Larry’s and Lori’s (that was his wife) on his boat. The name of it was Revenoc which is Conover backwards. He was Harvey Conover. On New Year’s weekend, it was sort of their last little few days out - they were going to come back because everybody had to go back to work and school - and they went on a cruise, and the ship was lost. They never came back. Now, the girl that was on the boat, that was the friend of Larry and Lori’s, was pregnant, and she had had it with the sailing, and she went back and stayed in a hotel. So, it was Larry and Lori, her husband, and Harvey and Dorothy. And the boat was never found. If you look up any story about the Bermuda Triangle, the Revenoc is spoken about.

  • He (Harvey) had a good friend, the Du Ponts. They had a huge search for the boat. His good friends were so convinced that he was such a magnificent sailor that this could not have happened to him, and they kept searching for ages, weeks after the coast guard stopped. So that was traumatic.


Sports Illustrated (January 20, 1958) ran a detailed article about the Revenoc’s disappearance

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