Sunday, June 20, 2010

Boldt Castle on the St. Lawrence

Trey’s post made me think of another American castle, this one located in the Thousand Islands, an area of the St. Lawrence River which runs between New York and Ontario, Canada. Back in the early to mid-80’s, I visited the Islands for a week or so every summer. Some relatives own some beach front property on Carnegie Bay, and it was a short boat ride over to Boldt Castle on Heart Island. As a kid playing D&D, the place was one of the most inspiring things I’d seen.

I remember being told by my cousins who lived there during the summers that the island was quite the party scene in the 70’s before they began fixing up the place. I can imagine a ton of kids tripping through the possibly haunted (and probably dangerously unstable) ruins.

Millionaire George Boldt had construction begin in the year 1895. He even had the island formed into the shape of a heart. The whole thing was supposed to be a testament to his love for his wife. They began living there in 1900, but it was never completed - she died a few years later and he lost all interest in it. It lie in ruins for over seventy years. I went there several times, the last time being to show a girlfriend the place when I was about twenty. Back then, portions were still off limits, but the local Bridge Authority had acquired the property and were slowly restoring the entire location for tourism.

It seems they have quite the website up now for the place. Don’t miss the brochure and castle map.


christian said...

I like how our history keeps crossing paths. My brother in-law lives in the 1,000 Islands area and works as a vet. I keep threatening to go visit him in order to fish, swim and cruise around.

ze bulette said...

It was amazing how you could tool around the islands and see something new every time. I miss the fishing too.

Trey said...

Cool. This reminds me--there's a surprising large number (to me at least) of castles in the United States.

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