Born: April 12, 1922
Died: December 7, 1997
Children: Martha Gladd, Susan Germaine, Margaret Scheller, James Jr., Fred, Richard, Steve
Edna Corsa Finn was the Historian for the Village of Saranac Lake and the Town of Harrietstown.
Adirondack Daily Enterprise, December 9, 1997
SARANAC LAKE - Edna Finn, 75, of Old Lake Colby Road, died Sunday, Dec. 7, 1997 at her home in Saranac Lake.
Born April 12, 1922 in Huntington, she was the daughter of Frederick and Hattie (Hunt) Corsa.
She married James R. Finn on Sept. 22, 1954. He predeceased her on Dec. 26, 1985.
Mrs. Finn graduated from Northport High School in 1939. She was employed by Northport High School from 1939 to 1942 and was later employed for Grumman Aircraft during World War II from 1942 to 1945; Huntington Station Bank from 1946 to 1951; and the Lake Placid Club from 1951 to 1954. She later owned and operated Currier Press with her husband from 1952 to 1984.
She was instrumental in organizing the Ladies of the Elks in Saranac Lake, serving as Leading Lady, and initiated the Ladies of the Elks Senior Tea in 1959. She helped revitalize the Saranac Lake Parent Teacher Association and served as president. She was active with the Cub Scouts and hosted CCD classes for St. Bernard's Church students attending Lake Colby School. She was also a volunteer driver for Meals on Wheels in Saranac Lake.
Finn was known for her skills as a historian and genealogist having served as Village of Saranac Lake, Town of Harrietstown, and Franklin County Historian, and on numerous historical boards and organizations. She assisted individuals from around the world in their search for their family histories. She was also a member of St. Bernard's Church.
Survivors include three daughters, Martha Gladd of Saranac Lake, Susan Germaine of Logan, Utah, Margaret Scheller of Glen, N.H.; four sons James Jr. of Cincinnati, Ohio, Fred of Bloomingdale, Richard of Saranac Lake, and Steve of Ft. Lauderdale; sister Evelyn Ketchum of East Northport; 13 grandchildren, 13 great grandchildren, and many nieces and nephews.
She was predeceased by her husband, and two sisters Alice Corsa and Jennie Corsa.
Calling hours will be from held from 2 to 4 and 7 to 9 p.m. today at the Fortune-Keough Funeral Home. A bible vigil service will take place at 8 p.m. Tuesday. A mass of Christian burial will be held at 11:15 a.m. Wednesday at St. Bernard's Church with the Rev. Mark Reilly officiating. Burial will be held in the St. Bernard's Cemetery in May.
Friends wishing to remember Mrs. Finn can make contributions to High Peaks Hospice or the Saranac Lake Red Cross Chapter in care of the Fortune-Keough Funeral Home.
Adirondack Daily Enterprise, January 9, 1997
Edna Finn to retire as town, village historian
By LARRY RULISON
Enterprise Staff Writer
SARANAC LAKE - Harrietstown's historian post will be up for grabs in the near future as one of the area's chroniclers of the past, Edna Finn, steps down after holding the job for a number of years.
Finn told town officials this week that she does not wish to be re-appointed to the historian position.
"I don't get around as much as I used to," said Finn, who is 74. She has held the unpaid position since late 1990, taking over for Janet Decker.
"You should give somebody a chance to prove what they can do," Finn said.
Tonight, the Harrietstown Town Board will be making official appointments at its annual organizational meeting. Many positions, such as those on the zoning, planning and assessment boards, have already been made.
Finn also is historian for the village of Saranac Lake and is expected to step down from that position before the spring appointments as well. She has held that post since 1991.
As town historian, a position mandated by the state, Finn was the official expert on local history and helped to answer many historical inquiries.
"You become sort of a well of information." Finn said.
She compiled a history of the Saranac Lake Winter Carnival and in 1992 compiled a list of all the elected village officials for the village's centennial, among other projects. "The history of a village or a town is really the history of its people," Finn said.
One of Finn's proudest achievements is having made clear in history's eyes that the Saranac Lake Winter Carnival, which is celebrating its centennial this year, is not the oldest winter carnival in the country and that it has not been running continuously.
"It's high time that we admitted the truth and didn't portray ourselves as something that we are not," Finn said.
According to Finn's research, St. Paul, Minn. holds the nation's oldest winter carnival, having begun in 1886. Leadville, Colo. holds the second oldest. Finn says that Saranac Lake's is the oldest east of the Mississippi River. It began in 1897.
Finn has also compiled a 50-page local history book for fourth grade students at Lake Clear, including history of Lake Clear, Rainbow Lake, Saranac Inn and Gabriels. The curriculum has been used for two years now. Finn gasps at the thought of any important records being destroyed - especially government records. She says the loss of medical records from the tuberculosis era has been tragic.
Finn was also one of the founding members of the Adirondack Genealogical-Historical Society, a group of local residents that trace family history and ancestry.
Finn's husband, James Finn, who died in 1985, also had a connection with the town before becoming Franklin County legislator. He served on the Harrietstown Town Board from 1966 to 1977.
And even though Finn is not recommending anyone; for the post, she does have advice for anyone who might get the job.
"Enjoy your work because it's the only reward you get," she said.