Every Monday we share a vintage image on the Essex on Lake Champlain Facebook page and invite our viewers to play some Vintage Essex Trivia. Do you recognize either of the boats in the photo above? When do you think it was taken? What can you tell us about it?
This photograph was shared with us by Christine Herrmann. Here’s what she shared with us about it when she sent it to us:
The Little Jenny was owned by Mr. Bigelow and spent summers anchored in the bay near Essex. I believe the captain’s name was Mr. Pierce. This photo was taken one summer in the early 1950s in Essex as my cousins (Bill & Blythe Bickel) and I (Christine Allen Herrmann) were sailing by on Bill’s Snipe. I wonder how many people remember the Little Jenny… ~Christine Herrmann
Take a look at the conversation below that occurred about the photo on our Facebook page to learn more about the Little Jenny or is it the Little Jennie…?
Tod Crouter: Quite sure that is my great grandfather’s Chesapeake Bay bugeye, the “Little Jennie.” Charles Bigelow sailed her on the lake in the 40’s and early 50’s. I’ll ask Mom about the smaller boat as well. http://littlejennie.com
Tod Crouter: Mom says they always used the Essex Marina (did its name change?). She came up the canal with her grandfather. The masts were stepped in a marina in Burlington.
Christine Herrmann: The Essex Marine Base is not the same as it was in the days of Jim Morse and Lawrence Palmer. The old marina is now 2 separate enterprises — Essex Marina and Essex Shipyard.
Tod Crouter: Mom says that the “Little Jennie” is moored off our old beach, below the Lakeview Cemetary and the Hoffnagle farmhouse. The small sailboat may be Fred Wardenburg’s Christine H., how did you come across this?
Christine Herrmann: Tod, I found this photo in a box of “old lake photos.” The small sailboat is not Fred’s which I think was a Star. This is a Snipe belonging to my cousin, Bill Bickel. The photo was taken in the early 1950s near the Essex bay. Bill, Blythe (his sister) and I were young teenagers and were not allowed to sail out of sight of our camps on Sandy Point. As I recall, the captain of the Little Jenny was Mr. Pierce who lived in the village and Little Jenny was moored in the bay.
Tod Crouter: You’re right! Fred, my uncle, sailed a Star. He died several years ago. I learned to sail in Fred’s Sunfish from our dock south of the Myers’ camp.
Christine Herrmann: Sorry to hear about Fred. We were friends back in the 1950s. My family still owns the camps at Sandy Point, and I have spent time there every summer except one (we lived in CA that year!) since 1947. It’s my favorite place.
Tod Crouter: You’re very lucky. Our family misses Essex so much!
If you want to learn more, then visit the website Tod Crouter shares littlejennie.com and you can read more about this boat and watch a video documentary about the Little Jennie‘s restoration.
Share Your Essex Artifacts
If you want to share your old photos of Essex (or brochures; postcards; menus; tickets; any artifact) on the blog please email us at editor [at] essexonlakechamplain [dot] com.
- Vintage Postcard: Essex, NY from Lake Champlain (www.essexonlakechamplain.com)
- Vintage Photo: Inside the Old Dock Tavern (www.essexonlakechamplain.com)
- Vintage Postcard: Essex from Lake Champlain (1909) (www.essexonlakechamplain.com)
- Vintage Photo: Essex Motor Boat Station (www.essexonlakechamplain.com)
- Vintage Postcard: Essex Bay (www.essexonlakechamplain.com)
- Vintage Postcard: Gem of the Lake (www.essexonlakechamplain.com)