Stories and Remembrances

I am thrilled that so many people have stumbled across the blog.  Please share with friends and family. I wanted to have a place where all the wonderful comments could easily be found, so I started this page.  I have taken the stories and remembrances we have received about the lodge so far and put them on this page.  I will still be posting pictures on the main “blog” so fell free to comment on those as well.

From Angie (Clinch) Johnson, Littleton, Colorado:

Dr. Hawkins and his wife, “GrandMartha” took our family to their cabin at the lake during several summers in the late 1960′s and after my dad died in 1971. It’s next to the Lodge if I’m right? One of the very few photos of my family all together was on the porch or their cabin. We enjoyed boat rides on the lake, picking huckleberries, learning the names of plants and trees, and learning to swim. The Hawkins were the best neighbors and Martha in particular was THE BEST friend to my mom after my dad’s death. We all still treasure all our memories from that time. I agree with the poster who said it’s the most beautiful place on earth. Thanks for this blog!

 

From Jan Marie DeLay:

Wow, thanks so much for creating this blog and capturing the history in photos and stories! Thanks to my cousin John Bliss for directing our family to the site! Indeed, as John Bliss states, our great uncle John Stark was Cap’s son in law. Marie, John Stark’s wife, was Cap’s oldest daughter. Juanita was the younger daughter of Cap and grandmother to me, my brother, Bradley Rupert, and my Bliss cousins. I never met Tyne, although she was still living when I was born. My mother, Joan (Bliss), is the skinny girl with braids petting the black lab. I also spotted the top of her head in the middle of a picture of Tyne and Cap. For some reason, I know how my grandma braided her hair, so I can spot it in a second! This is going to be a blast to share with my children. Thanks again! Jan Marie DeLay,
Longmont, Colorado

From John Garnett:

I was fortunate enough to have visited Laird’s Lodge in the late 40s with my parents and others who worked for the same oil company my dad worked for. I remember Dick and Margaret and their two daughters whose names I can’t recall. We were usually there around Halloween and would have a big party in the lodge. I distinctly remember “bobbing” for apples in a washtub and listening to Dick play the marimba. I have a few photos my dad took that I’d be glad to e-mail to anyone interested. They are black & white and show the main lodge, the Hickey’s home (I think) and a couple of the cabins where guests stayed.

From Patricia Nell Warren:

I grew up on the Grant-Kohrs Ranch at Deer Lodge. My parents, Con and Nellie Warren, were friends of the Lairds, and the family spent many happy vacations at the Lake during the 1940s.
“Family” included my brother Conrad and myself, as well as my aunt and uncle John and Charlotte Potter, and their two children Jack and Bobby, who were living in Montana at that time. My dad had spent some time at sea before he took over the ranch at Deer Lodge in 1932. He built a catboat named “Dolly Varden” and was one of those intrepid Rocky Mountain sailors who pioneered sailing on the challenging and sometimes choppy and dangerous mountain lakes of our region. He chose the catboat because it was a type of small sailboat that was popular for sailing choppy waters on the East Coast. We always hauled the “Dolly Varden” up to Lindbergh Lake. Often, when the lake was calm, we just motored quietly around in the “Dolly” trolling for steelhead. I well remember the comfort and warmth of the place, the Lairds’ hospitality and fun-loving personalities, and the wonderful Western food. Does anybody else remember the “glacier worm” that was one of Cap’s fantastic critters out in the timber? It was crafted from a curiously corkscrewed treetrunk. He loved to take kids out to see the glacier worm — it was always good for a scream from us. I’m so glad to know that the place has been preserved with its traditions and history and charm intact.

From Kathryn:

My name is Kathryn, and I’m the Grandaughter of Sharon and Dan. (Sharon is the Daughter of Dick Hickey.) They still live across from the ranch and I see it all the time. I love the way you’ve preserved the Diamond L Bar and it’s history. Just thought I should let you know, and good job!

From John Garnett:

I remember Sharon and her sister from when my family visited the Lodge. I doubt that she will remember me since that was a lot of years ago. I mean a lot. I do rember building a snowman one year that was so big someone’s dad had to put the head on it because us kids couldn’t reach high enough. Those were fun times. I remember Nanook (sp), the Malamute. The last time I saw Margaret and Dick was when they came down to my home town in East Texas to visit the Cannons who would put together our trips to the Diamond L Bar. Coming back and visiting the Lodge is on my “bucket list.”

From Ron Ukrainetz:

I can’t begin to tell you how excited I was to have stumbled on your blog. My family owned Lindbergh Lake lodge from 1977 until you and Jim and Harry and Cricket purchased it. Mother (Lois) passed away 3 years ago and the memories she left with us of the lodge are true treasures. As you know, I lived there for nearly 11 years, and it still brings feelings of great joy, in spite of ‘moving snow’ daily during the winters. There is true magic there. We still visit, albeit strange to camp at the campground. We still keep in touch with many friends from up there including the Fitzgeralds. I don’t think I ever told you just how much we appreciate all the stunning improvements you made to the lodge. Thanks for preserving it in such fine fashion. Please feel free to contact me anytime and we can continue to add to the wonderfully rich history of ‘Laird’s Lodge in the land.chuck full of hush’.

From John Garnett:

Ron, I wrote you several years back about the Lodge. You wrote back updating me on what had transpired since I visited there in the 40′s. I told you that my wife and I want to come back and see it again, but so far we haven’t made it. When we do, and we will, we’ll be sure to stop by your studio and visit, if that’s all right. I’m looking forward to returning to God’s country, even though it will only be a brief stop.

From John Bliss:

Wendy,
Thank you so much for starting this blog and the wonderful history. I am the great grandson of Cap Laird and I believe it was you who so kindly gave my wife Maria and two of our three kids (Sam, named after Samuel Eli ‘Cap’ Laird, and Andy) a grand tour of the Lodge in the summer of 2010. John Stark was Cap’s son-in-law and my great uncle. Cap had passed away long before I was born; however, I do have childhood memories of exchanging letters with Uncle John. I was enthralled by his stories of shoveling many feet of snow off his roof each winter.
We live in Seattle and I discovered your website just today after talking by phone to a good friend of mine (Alex Diekmann) who works for the Trust for Public Land in Bozeman and was involved in the big land deal with Plum Creek a few years back that forever preserved so much of the land in your area. I tolk Alex the story of Laird Lodge and then googled the name after I was off the phone and disovered your website.
I will connect my family to this website and I am sure my father and his sister can add many stories. My father-in-law Jim Quann is our family historian and has also visited Laird Lodge (and I believe was hosted by the Wilsons). He wrote a wonderful article for ‘The Pacific Northwesterner’ – a history journal – a few years ago, telling the story of the connection he found between Laird Lodge and a WWII hero Colonel C. Ross Greening. Jim found the connection when his research for a book about alumni of Washington State University who served in our wars led him to Greening, and it was then that he discovered the connection to Laird Lodge. I believe I left the article – contained in a small booklet with many photos – with you when we visited, but if not, I would be happy to send you a copy.
Thank you,
John Bliss
Mercer Island, WA

From John Garnett:

Wendy,
Thank you so much for starting this blog and the wonderful history. I am the great grandson of Cap Laird and I believe it was you who so kindly gave my wife Maria and two of our three kids (Sam, named after Samuel Eli ‘Cap’ Laird, and Andy) a grand tour of the Lodge in the summer of 2010. John Stark was Cap’s son-in-law and my great uncle. Cap had passed away long before I was born; however, I do have childhood memories of exchanging letters with Uncle John. I was enthralled by his stories of shoveling many feet of snow off his roof each winter.
We live in Seattle and I discovered your website just today after talking by phone to a good friend of mine (Alex Diekmann) who works for the Trust for Public Land in Bozeman and was involved in the big land deal with Plum Creek a few years back that forever preserved so much of the land in your area. I tolk Alex the story of Laird Lodge and then googled the name after I was off the phone and disovered your website.
I will connect my family to this website and I am sure my father and his sister can add many stories. My father-in-law Jim Quann is our family historian and has also visited Laird Lodge (and I believe was hosted by the Wilsons). He wrote a wonderful article for ‘The Pacific Northwesterner’ – a history journal – a few years ago, telling the story of the connection he found between Laird Lodge and a WWII hero Colonel C. Ross Greening. Jim found the connection when his research for a book about alumni of Washington State University who served in our wars led him to Greening, and it was then that he discovered the connection to Laird Lodge. I believe I left the article – contained in a small booklet with many photos – with you when we visited, but if not, I would be happy to send you a copy.
Thank you,
John Bliss
Mercer Island, WA

From John Garnett:

Ross Greening was indeed a hero. He and his wife Dot would come visit from time to time since they only lived a short distance from the Lodge as the crow flies. Captain (at the time) Greening was one of the pilots in the Doolittle Raiders. In order to lighten the planes as much as possible, they removed the machine guns from the tails and upon Ross’ suggestion, replaced them with broomsticks painted black to look like guns. The bombsight at that time was the Norden which was highly classified. Knowing that some of the planes would be shot down, Ross designed one that was almost free to build and didn’t matter if the Japanese got it. It was Ross’ bombsight that was used during the raid. For a little kid, it was a real treat to sit and listen to Ross tell stories. Both he and Dot are buried at Arlington National Cemetary.

From Ron Ukrainetz:

I would like to share just one of the treasured events that occurred at the ‘Lodge”. One summer afternoon in the late ’80′s, a young man docked his canoe at the boat dock, and I went out to greet the visitor. His name was Ross Greening Jr., and like his father, was also an artist. We invited him to stay, have the run of the place, relax, and just relate what he could remember of his early days with his Dad at the lodge.

Ross stayed with us for several days, relating stories, many of them humorous, some very serious. He indicated he would send us some photos of Col Greening’s crew reunions at the Lodge when he returned home, which he did. I believe Cricket and Jim have those in one of the many historical albums we left there.

Ross also gave me an autographed copy of his Dad’s limited edition book entitled “Not as Briefed” (pub. Brown and Bigelow) AND the story behind the book written by Col. Greening. It is an amazing epic with over 75 color images that Col. Greening painted with hand made brushes, paints, and whatever scraps of paper they could find. It is also a story of perseverance, ingenuity, tragedy, and heroism. For any of you who are interested, I would gladly share any of this information (I scanned the entire book, along with the letters and stories, and have a burned cd copies for our family. We all love history!). The book is one of the personal treasures I still enjoy reading today.
Somewhere up at the lodge, there remains one of Col Greening’s paintings of Lindy Peak, done from the front yard of the Lodge.

8 Responses to Stories and Remembrances

  1. Jim J. Crawford, Jr. says:

    From the Land chuck full ‘o hush, I still have John Stark Classic Black Pine furniture and hand carved pear, apple, and grape cluster. I grew up listening to stories about Cap. My grandpa took me to visit Lavetta when I was little, met Juanita, and I loved Ike (Larry) and Alma’s parrots. “There goes the Rabbi”!

  2. Tom Stump says:

    My aunt and uncle, John and Kay Stump, had a cabin at Lindbergh Lake. I visited a few times in the 80s. I fish the Bitterroot River yearly and visited the lake last year. Nothing looked very familiar and I couldn’t find my uncle’s old cabin. He died in 2007. The cabin is probably long gone and rebuilt over from what I could see. We used to motor up to the top of the lake and then hike into the hills and fish the small mountain lakes. My aunt would find mushrooms to cook with the fish. Of course we had to watch for grizzlies everywhere. My uncle had a lot of stories about trying to get to the lake before all the snow melted. Sure had a great time always. Glad I found your blog with all the history. Thanks.

  3. klamb5charter.net says:

    I’m planning on visiting Lindbergh lake and will the owners let me look around the property? I’m planning to be in that area in September 2019.
    Our family spent 2 weeks every August from 1953 to 1975. My best childhood memories. It’s been 20 years since I’ve been there. I would love to see it one more time to see how it’s changed.
    I always dreamed of having a cabin there but the dream never came true.

  4. Thomas C. Hawkins says:

    Thomas C. Hawkins here, grandson of TL Hawkins and nephew of Janet Downey, cousin of Dan who now own the cabin across the river from the lodge. Many, many great memories of the Lodge and Lake. I’ll be there third week in July 2020 – is the Lodge a business or a private home now?

  5. Chuyck Greening says:

    My name is Charles Greening and was the guy who landed his Canoe at the dock at Lairds lodge in the late 80s.and met Ron Ukranetz My Dad partnered with Dick Hickey in 1946 when they purchased the Diamond L Bar Ranch My earliest child hood memories are flooded with an amazing array of experiences on the ranch until our family ended the partnership in 1962
    Ill never forget the summer of 1962 as a teenager, getting together with the Morgan girls and the Wisemans and the Corys, water skiing, floating the Swan, and hanging out in front of the Lodge until dark. It was a magical time

    • Tom Hawkins here…a few years later I was two cabins over, across the Swan, on the Hawkins dock trying to meet girls like Chris Stump on the Lodge dock! All similar memories – smell of suntan lotion, sounds of waves lapping on the dock, waterskiing. Still a Shangri La – and I’ll be visiting the lake later this September

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