The Pines is a sixteen acre tract of pine woods located near Mount Baker on the south side of Moody Pond. It was part of Jacob Moody's original purchase in 1819, and stayed in the Moody family until 1911, when it was sold to Edith R. Bucklin, who sold it to Walter Cluett and Alex Stanley in 1920. In 1927, the land was given to the T.B. Society; in 1943, the Society decided that the pines should be left standing as a memorial to Dr. Lawrason Brown. The property included a lodge and a barn that were razed in 1943. 1
Walter Cluett and Alex Stanley started the Pines Club, also known as the Moody Pond Sliding Club; it featured a bobsled run off of Mt. Baker and skating and curling on the ice. 23 During Prohibition, it became a speakeasy run by Jersey Joe Garbachio. "...the wealthy families of Cluett, Stanley and Col. Scott started a resort known as The Pines Club, which ceased abruptly following the mysterious death of a maid on the premises." 4
Adirondack Daily Enterprise, June 3, 2006
The Pines, a 15-acre stand of white pines between Pine street and Moody Pond, was deeded to the Saranac Lake Tuberculosis Society in 1937, the gift of Walter Cluett and Mrs. Alex Stanley. The old Pines Club was demolished and the SLVHA, successor to the TB Society, eventually dedicated the area as a park in memory of Dr. Lawrason Brown.
Undated, unidentified news clipping
AGENTS SWOOP DOWN UPON SARANAC CLUB
The Pines, Once Rated as Most Exclusive, Scene of Prohi Raid
SARANAC LAKE, Sept. 6. — The Pines, at one time rated one of the most exclusive clubs in the Adirondacks, was raided this, afternoon by prohibition agents, who seized a store of beverages which they said ranged from grain alcohol to Italian vermouth.
Cora Mack was charged with possession in violation of the Volstead act, and was ordered to appear tomorrow morning before United States Commissioner George Utting In this village. The raid was made under authority of a search warrant issued, on complaint of Agent Arthur E. Byrnes.
The Pines was long reputed one of the smartest clubs in this section, where there are many exclusive organizations maintained by wealthy visitors. Recently its members have allowed the management to take tourists and entree, it is said, has not been so limited as in the past.
The agents listed among the confiscated goods 36 pints of Canadian ale, 136 pints of home brew, a gallon of alcohol, a quart and a half of Italian vermouth, a quart of French vermouth, two quarts of gin, two quarts of whisky and 15 gallons of home brew.
Adirondack Daily Enterprise, November 14, 1969
A History of Moody Pond By a Resident Who Knows It
During the War of 1812 the Northwest Bay Road ran from Westport, New York to Fort Covington on the Canadian Border passing by the West side of Pine Pond before it passed over the Baker Bridge Section of Saranac River, and continuing on the Old Military Road location Northerly through property that later became Trudeau Sanatorium.
A certain Jacob Moody, purchaser of property, in the year 1819 at Keene, New York, on the site of the Hulls Falls House later traveled over the Northwest Bay Road and some ten years after his purchase of property at Keene, N.Y., did also purchase a large tract of land in the Town of North Elba which included Pine Pond, then shown on maps in the Essex County Clerk's Office, and renamed the body of water, "Moody Pond."
He cleared the land for farming and located a temporary residence on the East side of it next to the property now owned by Dr. Richard P. Bellaire.
His son, Cortes Moody, and other sons, were supposed to be the first white settlers born in this area.
After Dr. Edward Livingston Trudeau established his practice in Saranac Lake and made a start in 1892 with the working girls curing in "Little Red" on the side of Mt. Pisgah, there came another famous personage named Robert Louis Stevenson, who stayed at the Baker Cottage in the year 1887, and wrote so the world could know that the only enjoyment he had in the miserable weather around the hamlet of Saranac Lake was in his act of skating on Moody Pond.
The Moody Pond Sliding Club, set up on the East shore, created a bobrun off the side of Mt. Baker which ran down Southwesterly on to the ice of the pond and the rich "sports" of the time also set up a curling rink outdoors. This club later became a nightspot during prohibition run by "Jersey Joe" Garbachio.
The original Fish and Game Club was located at the place owned now by Dr. Richard P. Bellaire and it was headed up by Dr. Charles C. Trembley. Across the pond in "the pines" the wealthy families of Cluett, Stanley and Col. Scott started a resort known as The Pines Club, which ceased abruptly upon the mysterious death of a maid on the premises.
In the 1920's the sports complex continued with trotting races held upon the track on the ice, headed up by a horseman named Phil Adler, and subsequently the Moody Pond Sports Club built a skating house and ski area and sponsored a semi-pro hockey team under the guidance of Francis B. Cantwell.
All of the stone for the walls built at Saranac Lake Village by the W.P.A. in the 1930s was quarried from the side of Mt. Baker and moved out past Moody Pond. It now exists as a privately owned residential area attracting attention only when there is a lost mountain climber who has descended on the wrong side of Mt. Baker.
1. Phil Gallos, By Foot in the Adirondacks
2. John Duquette, "Saranac Lake's history in winter fun and games", Adirondack Daily Enterprise, February 26, 1994
3. John Duquette, "Early Boys club was center of SL youth activities", Adirondack Daily Enterprise, September 2, 1995
4. Thomas B. Cantwell, "The History of Moody Pond By A Resident Who Knows It", Adirondack Daily Enterprise, November 14, 1969