River Travelers along the Genesee River

During the more quiet season of the Genesee River, it was a source of pleasure, not only to local people, but to the Rochester Canoe Club, as well. From the Castilian of May 31, 1897, we take this item:

“The Rochester Canoe Club, on its annual cruise down the Genesee River, made up of the following members: H.M. Stewart, Cort Avery, Al T. Brown, Wm. Patterson, Lee Rishwood, Col. C. H. Moody, Frank L. Dodgson, L. P. Newton, H. Cliff Shaw, Dr. F. R. Smith, P. P. Dickenson, Frank P. Crouch, H. B. Squire, jas. K. Hand, Chas. B. Wolters, Ed. F. Pillow, Wm. H. Burtis, Geo. P. Decker, and Wm. Stace left Belfast on Sunday morning and the trip was full of interesting and amusing incidents. Dinner was eaten at Fillmore and the merry canoeists embarked again to arrive at Portageville at 8:30 Sunday night. Several canoes were punctured in the various rapids, mended and started again.

“From Portageville, the boys took the Western New York and Pennsylvania Railroad to Lewis’s Switch and again embarked below the Lower Falls. A quick run was made to the mouth of Wolf Creek and there all disembarked and went to the Tom Marsh home at St. Helena. The Rochester Canoe Club know there is but one Tom Marsh and if anyone doubts it, read the following menu which was served for Monday’s dinner.

Olives Fruits Pickles
Roast Chicken with Dressing
Raised Biscuit Cold Ham
Potatoes in Cream Green Corn Beans
Lettuce Salad Cottage Cheese
Strawberry Short Cake
Wine Plant Pie Corn Starch Cake
Mrs. Thos. E. Marsh’s Nut Cake CoBee Iced Milk Lemonade
Perfectos a la Commodore Straight Cut Cigarettes

“The menu was printed on an exceedingly attractive birch-bark folder especially prepared for the occasion, the four pages being tied with the club colors. If anyone ever saw a well-fed and satisfied crowd, it was at the Marsh homestead. Fred Marsh, Tom’s father, came down from his home on the eastern hill, and helped entertain the boys.

“Postmaster L. S. Coleman of Castile was a guest of the Marshes. He is an old canoeist and a whole-souled genial gentleman. It was a pleasure for the boys to meet one of the old school. The members reached Mt. Morris Monday night, tired but happy. . . .“

Source: Anderson, Mildred L. H, and Marian P. Willey. St. Helena, Ghost Town of the Genesee, 1797-1954. Castile, N.Y, 1954. Print.

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