Gramp’s father was Harold George Walden, most often referred to as HG. This is one of his hunting adventures that I think deserves a telling. Gramps was about 8 years old at the time of this story so this is an eighty-four year old memory!
One late fall day probably at the end of legal deer season, my father, HG Walden, went hunting. On this particular day he was by himself. HG left early in the morning from Walden Landing in one of his regular rowboats with the 1914 Evinrude motor he used back then. He boated up through the Thoroughfare to the Upper Pond where he docked the boat and headed up past the Big Rock to Scammon Ridge.
He hunted all day and the weather sharpened up considerably and got very cold. Close to dusk, he came back down to the Pond and got in the boat to return home. He was just through the Thoroughfare when he realized the Lower Pond was skimmed over with thin sharp ice. Now skim ice can cut right through a boat so HG had to think a little on what to do. He knew he could pull the boat up on shore but he did not want to carry the motor all the way home; he would have to hide it in a place where it would not be stolen.
So he deposited the motor in the Pond in 8 feet of water where there was a sandy bottom. The boat he pulled up on shore near the Muzzy Camp for the winter. Then he walked the five miles home by way of the Old Wagon Road.
In the spring after the thaw HG and I left from Walden’s Landing in one of our rowboats and headed up to the spot where he had left the motor the previous fall. He had no difficulty in finding exactly where it was. We procured the motor with a hook attached to a rope and hauled it up. Because it was made almost entirely of bronze (except for the cylinder which was iron) it had not rusted.
We rowed back down to the Landing and walked up the hill home with that Evinrude motor that had been underwater for the winter, took off the Magneto and put in the wood oven. We couldn’t let it get too hot, just hot enough to dry it out. So after half an hour, HG took the Mag out and reinstalled it. Then we went down to the Pond, put the motor on the boat and at the first crank ppppppppputppppput – it started beautifully.
They don’t make motors like they used to.