Most histories of Rowe Pond Camps start with owners Witham and Maxfield, who ran the camps in the early 1900’s. This article presents evidence of earlier owners of camps and equipment at the site in 1895, and their connection to Witham and Maxfield.
On October 21, 1895 Albion Healy of Pleasant Ridge bought a half interest in five camps that were then standing at Rowe Pond. As security, he mortgaged Lot #60 in Pleasant Ridge, known as the Levi Andrews farm, which he had purchased from George Andrews in 1890. He also mortgaged his half interest in the camps he was purchasing at Rowe to seller Amos Russell Remick, for $600 to be paid over three years (the deed is available below).
Remick was born in Starks in 1872, a son of John Dinsmore and Ann (Mantor) Remick. In 1892, he married Georgia Etta Savage of Concord Corner, daughter of Nathan H. and Sarah Jane (Gould) Savage. See the map below for location of the Savage property and their Healy and Witham neighbors. Albion Healy’s mother, Parthena Savage, was Nathan’s sister and Georgia Etta’s aunt.
Remick bought a number of properties in the 1890’s – in Concord, Pleasant Ridge, Moscow, and Anson. He bought (mortgaged) a mill property northeast of Concord Corner, south of Felker Bog, from his wife’s brother Wilbur H. Savage in 1897. The mill was formerly owned by Nason Hunnaford, whose widow sold it to Savage in 1889. Amos Remick was listed in Maine Directories in the 1890’s as a grocer in Concord, and as a millwright there.
Remick bought the Grover Andrews lot (# 38) in Pleasant Ridge adjoining the Mill (Clear) Pond property in 1898. He had a supply contract with the Marrett Lumber Company of Portland in 1899, when he mortgaged his Anson property to them as a bond on his performance.
By 1900, Remick was in financial trouble. His wife and two daughters had gone to live with her parents, who had moved to Norridgewock. They divorced and she married Jared Bates in 1909. The Savage family foreclosed on the mill property in Concord in 1899, and John Spencer foreclosed on the Grover Andrews lot in 1901. Remick had mortgaged another property in Anson to his aunt, Lydia Remick Maxfield, wife of Herbert W. Maxfield, the eventual proprietor of Rowe Pond Camps. In 1905, Amos was declared bankrupt and moved to Franklin County, where he died in 1950.
The Rowe Pond Camps property, still owned by the Westons, was leased to Laforest E. Witham and Herbert W. Maxfield in April 1900 for a period of ten years. Witham and Maxfield were married to sisters Hattie and Lydia Remick, Amos Remick’s aunts.
Albion Healy remained close to operations at Rowe Pond, as his advertising material for Healy’s Ranch indicates, but his ownership may have terminated with that of Amos Remick. The following paragraph from Albion Healy’s 1895 deed to Amos R. Remick clearly describes what was on the Rowe Pond property at the time of the sale, along with equipment on various other ponds. As the deed stipulates, the Rowe Pond land was leased from the Weston* family at the time of this sale:
…Also my one undivided half interest in and to the following personal property to wit: – Five camps, one boat house, one ice house, one store house, and one hovel all situated on land owned by B.P.J. Weston on the shore of Rowe Pond in said No.1 Range 2 W.K.R. called Pleasant Ridge Plantation. Also four boats in Jewett Pond, four boats in Bean Pond, two boats in Brandy Pond, one boat in Bog Pond, and twelve boats in Rowe Pond, anchor ropes, oars and paddles belonging to said boats – and one birch canoe, two reclining chairs, silverware consisting of one and one-half dozen dessert spoons, one-half dozen table spoons, one and one-half dozen tea spoons, four butter knives, four sugar scoops, 23 table knives, three dozen forks, twelve mattresses, 13 spring beds, 4 straw beds, 36 puffs, 30 sheets, 20 pillows, 20 pillow slips, three cot beds and sheets, 3 dozen common chairs, one dozen common chairs for boats, 7 rocking chairs, 7 stoves, ice tongs, ice saw, two cant dogs, spade, pick axe – and all axes, two wash tubs and wringer, 30 rods iron pipe, one cross cut saw, one coffee mill – and all cooking utensils, crockery, tin and glass ware and towels all now contained in and about said above described camps. Being the same property this day bought by me of said A. Russell Remick. (See the entire deed)
The deed does not say who built the five camps standing on the property in 1895. They may have been built before Remick took possession—or by him—but that is a mystery yet to be solved. It certainly sounds as if the camps were well equipped for guests by October 1895.
* Amos Remick’s aunt, his mother’s sister Ada Mantor, married John Edward Weston, son of Benjamin and Anna (Jewett) Weston of Madison.
- Somerset County Registry of Deeds
- Maine Directories, 1890’s.
- Cobb, Gary and Alfred H. Fenton, The History of Pierce Pond. Knowlton & McLeary, 1992.