Second from right Harriet Gillespie; far right, Helen Gillespie Baldwin
Courtesy of Jeannie Louise Gillespie Darrah
Born: October 5, 1866

Died: March 1968

Married: William Gillespie

Children: Lee Gillespie, J. Easton Gillespie, Helen Gillespie Baldwin

Harriet Noble Gillespie was a daughter of Levi W. and Sally Dudley Noble.  After her husband's death she operated Gillespie's Tourist Home in Bloomingdale.


Adirondack Daily Enterprise, October 5, 1961

Mrs. Gillespie Reaches 95; Saw Bloomingdale Change

Mrs. Harriet Noble Gillespie celebrates her ninety-fifth birthday today. She watched the Methodist Church being built in Bloomingdale in 1876 with logs cut from her parents' farm, recalls Dr. Edward Trudeau wanting to build Trudeau Sanatorium on the road leading out of Bloomingdale toward Gabriels and remembers when Bloomingdale was a larger community than Saranac Lake.

Mrs. Gillespie was born in Franklin in 1866 and has lived in Bloomingdale for 92 years. She has two sons living in Bloomingdale, Lee, Town of St. Armand Supervisor, and Easton. A daughter Mrs. Helen Baldwin, passed away several years ago. Her husband William died in 1897.

The Methodist Church built in 1876 still stands in Bloomingdale and Mrs. Gillespie knew the first pastor of the parish, a Rev. Beaudry. Last summer the grandson of Rev. Beaudry came to Bloomingdale to learn more of his grandfather, never expecting to meet someone who had known him personally. Pastor Beaudry's bible was given to Mrs. Gillespie to be donated to the church in his honor.

Mrs. Gillespie knew Bloomingdale when it boasted three hotels. The St. Armand House, owned by Captain William Pierce, stood on the lot of the former Greenier home and the Temperance House and the Crystal Spring House were then operating in full swing.

She is in remarkable good health, has perfect eyesight and hearing, had her first operation at age 90 and kept a 14-room house until she was 80 years old when her grandson, John, converted it into apartments one of which she now occupies. A member of the Friendship Class and the W.S.C.S. She taught Sunday school for 50 years and on occasion still acts as a substitute teacher.

With the world situation what it is, Mrs. Gillespie had this to say of Civil Defense: "Civil Defense is important because, unless we are ready, there will be no civilians left to talk about."

Mrs. Gillespie has three grandchildren and several great-great-grandchildren and says, "all my old friends have long ago passed away, but the young people fill in the vacancy, and God has been so good to me that I feel that I have had a wonderful life."


Adirondack Daily Enterprise, March 19, 1968

 Area's Oldest Resident at 101:

Mrs. Gillespie Dies

Mrs. Harriet M. Gillespie, of Bloomingdale, the area's oldest resident, died at the age of 101 at 3:30 a. m. today at Saranac Lake General Hospital where she had been a patient since Aug. 20.

Up until her last illness, Mrs. Gillespie took an active part in the affairs of the Bloomingdale Methodist Church and a lively interest in the affairs of Bloomingdale where she had lived since she was about three years old.

She was born Oct. 5, 1866 in the Town of Franklin, a daughter of Levi W. and Sally Dudley Noble. Her husband, William, died in 1897, leaving her with three children, Lee and Helen now deceased and John E., who survives. She supported her family by operating a 14-room rooming house and took care of the house until she was 80 years old when her grandson converted it into apartments, one of which she occupied until August. The house was destroyed by fire while she was in the hospital but the news was kept from her.

Mrs. Gillespie could remember when Bloomingdale was larger than Saranac Lake and said Dr. Edward Trudeau had originally wanted to build his sanatorium on the Bloomingdale Gabriels Road.

Three grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren survive, in addition to her son.

Friends may call at the Fortune Funeral Home, beginning at 2 p. m. Wednesday. The Rev. Sang-Hyun Hahn, pastor, will conduct the funeral at the Bloomingdale Methodist Church,at 2 p. m. Friday. Interment will be in Brookside Cemetery.

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