Wawbeek Road

New York Times, July 13, 1902

Bears Killed at Saranac Inn

Unusual Occurrence Arouses Much Interest among Summer Visitors.

Special to The New York Times.

SARANAC INN. N. Y., July 12.—One of the woodsmen of the Upper Saranac Lake country recently killed three bears on the Wawbeek Road, some miles from Saranac Inn. It was a family of mother and two cubs, and the event is arousing considerable interest here, as a bear is a rarity in this locality.

The occurrence has brought to the minds of the people here an incident of some years ago in which the late Mrs. Charles Chandler was a participant. The Chandlers owned a camp on a point about two miles below Saranac Inn, and this property is still held by the Chandler estate. One day Mrs. Chandler was being rowed down the lake by a guide, when she saw something ahead that looked like a rock. She spoke to the guide about it, but the woodsman, perfectly familiar with the shore, paid little attention to Mrs. Chandler's warning. Suddenly she called to him to turn the boat aside, as there were three rocks directly ahead. The guide was compelled to recognize the sincerity of his charge, and, turning around, saw three bears, one of which he struck with the bow of the boat. The bears were excellent swimmers, and the guide, who was unarmed, was unable to kill more than one of the cubs with an oar.

Malone Farmer, April 17, 1935


Purchases of rights of way along the Wawbeek-Saranac Lake highway will be started this week. A temporary delay is securing the required rights of way because many of the property owners along the route of the road reside outside of Franklin County, being owners of camp property. Several have agreed to come to Saranac Lake next week to meet Supervisor Dan Foster and members of the Franklin County Highway Committee to compete the final negotiations on rights of way. Others have agreed to allow the road construction to proceed across their properties and will complete negotiations when they come to their camps for their summer vacations.

Plattsburgh Daily Press, August 9, 1938


After a delay of one and a half days caused by striking truck operators construction work on the six-mile section of the Wawbeek road at the Saranac Lake end has been resumed. The strike appeared to have been broken when between 12 and 15 trucks from nearby communities were called in to resume carting off needed materials.

Archie Linn of Albany, general superintendent of the Louis Mayersohn Construction Company, builders of the new road, said more trucks would be in operation this week.

Plattsburgh Press-Republican, September 28, 1939

SARANAC LAKE—The Wawbeek road, connecting this village with Tupper Lake through a route nearly eight miles shorter than the Lake Clear road, will be opened on Oct. 10.

Construction on the Wawbeek Saranac road will begin this spring as soon as the frost is out of the ground, allowing the starting of grading work. The section of the road graded last year will be surfaced with concrete this year and next year the new grading will be surfaced.

Lake Placid News, September 29, 1939

Wawbeek Road to Be Finished by October 10

The Wawbeek highway, connecting Saranac Lake with Tupper Lake thru a route nearly eight miles shorter than the Lake Clear road, will be completed and opened for use by October 10.

When the finishing touches are made it will mean the end of a 10-year campaign that included a long and hard fight to get the construction work started, a fight with the New York State Highway department to keep the work going and a fight with the contractors to speed up construction.

One contractor went bankrupt during the building period, a bank lost a large sum of money backing the contractor and numerous Saranac Lake and Harrietstown men were in various ways involved in the work. Former Supervisor Daniel S. Foster, who initiated the fight to obtain the road, made it the principal issue of his campaign in three elections.

More than 10 years ago, civic leaders, business men, office holders and other residents of the community appealed to Supervisor Foster to back the project. He carried the fight to the county board of supervisors that was hostile to the project and in favor of a road between St. Regis Falls and Moira.

Twice the Wawbeek road was displaced on the county road building program by the St. Regis Moira road. On each occasion, Supervisor Foster, the late Samuel D. Matthews, Mayor Thomas P. Ward and many other local residents appeared before the county board. When they received no remedy from that body, they carried their fight to Col. Greene of the New York state highway department. Col. Greene ordered the road replaced in its former position on the building program and he notified the county board of supervisors that no state road will be built in the county until the Wawbeek road was started.