Married: Florence


Halsey Brulliea was a World War I Veteran; after the war he operated a garage in Gabriels.

Historic Saranac Lake board member Kirk Peterson interview with Paul Smiths College library director Neil Surprenant, 2014:

Born in Paul Smith's on his family farm, according to Halsey his family had operated a stage coach station for the Paul Smith's Hotel before the railroads came to the resort (Paul Smith built an electric railroad from the Lake Clear Station to his hotel in 1906).  Halsey told Neil that as a boy he live trapped small animals such as squirrels and skunks and kept them in cages as the station, and that when the stage coach arrived its driver, George Meserve, would tell the sports/passengers that Halsey had the only zoo in the Adirondacks and that he would be happy to show them his animals.  Halsey said he often made more in tips from the sports than his parents made running the station.

Halsey was drafted in World War I and trained to fly Jenny biplanes in Texas; however, the war ended prior to his training and he made his way to New York City to find work.  With a nest egg from his city job he returned to Gabriels in the 1920s and purchased a garage. The garage was across Route 86 from the old hotel that was on the corner to the left of Ted’s Grocery.  It is long gone; there are houses on that lot now. 

As Gabriels was a hub of bootlegging at this time, Halsey told Neil that he soon made the acquaintance of Legs Diamond and other rum runners, assisting them in evading police by secreting their cars in his garage, for which he received a bottle of whatever they were hauling and a twenty dollar bill.   To this day Gabriels is the only local community with a road named after a bootlegger, Bert LaFoutain, who operated his speakeasy from the twenties into the fifties, when Paul Smith's College students often availed themselves of his services on Sundays, when other such establishments were closed.   Halsey and his wife Florence passed away in their nineties in the 1980s according to Neil.


Adirondack Record, April 4, 1919

Sgt. G. Halsey Brulliea Writes of His Experiences — Has Again Been Promoted

The following letter has been received from sgt. G. Halsey Brulliea, a former resident of An Sable Forks:

Dear Mr. McKee [? (illegible)]

I have not received my paper for two weeks and miss it very much. I hope you haven't forgotten me. It may be due to my change of address; if it is not too much trouble please change it to 272 Aero Squadron. I haven't much news only I cannot send just these few words, so will tell you about a little experience I had last week. I am assigned as cross country trouble shooter from Headquarters to the E. & R. and last Friday three ships were leaving for a trip to Kelly Field and I was in the leading ship with the Frenchman and we got off all O. K. and were carrying a special tank with fifty-five gallons of gas on board. When we were just over the city of Houston, about thirty or forty miles, as we were well on our way, our gas tank burst and as I was in the front seat and had the stick or controls and was being pappered [sic] with gas, and so was the Frenchman in the rear seat, I got rather nervous, and so did he, as we knew when we shut off the motor to come down, one back-fire and we would be all afire in a minute, so it wasn't pleasant thinking about it; but we did not land as the fog was bad and we lost the field and it took us over twenty minutes to find it, then to come down over four thousand feet in half a gale that was blowing on the ground wasn't encouraging much, but a level head sometimes helps so we made the field all O. K. I fixed the tank that night and we telephoned ahead to the other ships to carry on and we would leave in the morning, but it rained hard so we were unable to go. But no one knew we had come back, only a few in the squadron, and thought we had gone. The other ships both had forced landings but made the trip and had no trouble.

But here's where the fun comes in. Sunday night at midnight a telephone call came in and Monday morning a report came out that Frenchie and I had come down at Richmond, a small landing field about seventy miles from here, and both were killed instantly, but I knew I wasn't dead and so did Frenchie, so they had to blame it on someone else. But they found our two ships at Eagle Lake, a small landing field about a hundred miles away, and they were all O. K. and were gassing up for their return home. But at ten o'clock we got the real report that two lieutenants, Mosback of Wisconsin and Davidson were smashed almost beyond recognition and killed instantly. Lieut. Mosback was a fine flier and single, but Lieut. Davidson was a ground officer in Headquarters and has a wife and baby living here on the post. I well knew Lieut. Mosback and it came as a shock to hear of his death as he was a fine aviator but a little wild. I had a motor to install that he was experimenting on and he had made some changes I had suggested, but the poor fellow never got a chance to try them out.

Well these things are frequent to me but suppose they are new in Au Sable yet as there are not many ships in town yet, but there may be some day soon now. Here's good luck to you all in Au Sable. I have received my second promotion this month; nearly forgot to mention it, but not so bad to receive two in less than a month.   I got it for 100 per cent efficiency in installing and testing Liberty motors, also Hispano-Suiza and Curtis, as I have charge of all motors on the field in this respect. I have been rated sergeant so I am not quitting but am going after more, and will get it if I am here very much longer. Well, please remember me to all in the office. I remain as ever,


Sgt. G. H. Brulliea, 272 Aero Sqdn. Ellington Field. Houston, Texas.

P. S.—Please excuse me for writing so much, but I haven't anything else to do today.

Adirondack Daily Enterprise, November 11, 1970

Belated congratulations to Mr. and Mrs. Halsey Brulliea of Paul Smiths who celebrated their 49th wedding anniversary yesterday. They were married in Gabriels by Father Joseph Murtagh. Elizabeth (Bessie) Keegan was maid of honor and best man was Dennis Riley.

Friends may recall that there was a heavy snowstorm that November day in 1921. What a great time to leave on a honeymoon for Florida which is exactly what Florence and Halsey Brulliea did. May the years ahead be filled with hapniness.