Pages

A Lakeside Estate Steeped in History

Quisisana, Cottage of Rev. Samuel Miles Hopkins c. 1885
     Samuel Hopkins Adams (1871-1958) visited Second Peacock Point on Owasco Lake, the Summer Camp of the Hopkins family, since his childhood. In 1886 the family built a bungalow/summer cottage and named it Quisisana. Construction of the main house, named Wide Waters, began around the turn of the 20th century and was completed in three stages over subsequent years. Many aspects of the home remain the same today as when Adams lived there, as documented through photographs published in Samuel Kennedy's book titled, "Samuel Hopkins Adams and the Business of Writing."
     Kennedy tells us that Adams spent more than six decades as a journalist, muckraker, novelist, biographer, and historian. Between his start as a newspaperman in 1891 and his last novel published posthumously in 1959, he averaged almost one book a year. During many of those years his byline appeared monthly on some 450 articles and short stories in the nation's leading magazines.
     Some twenty films were produced using adaptations of stories written by Samuel Hopkins Adams. The most famous of these was the academy award winning "It Happened One Night", directed by Frank Capra and starring Claudette Colbert and Clark Gable.
     Adams was a highly disciplined writer who produced two-thousand words a day without fail. The very desk he used to compose his books is still at Wide Waters today. Come see the estate in person, and you can sit where this great author produced his works and discover for yourself why this special place is a site of great and enduring inspiration.
Gathering on the veranda of Wide Waters, c. 1910

wikipedia.org/wiki/Samuel_Hopkins_Adams
Samuel Hopkins Adams (1885-1958), publicity photo c. 1930

 en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grandfather_Stories
Articles by Samuel Hopkins Adams about his grandfathers, including stories about visits to Quisisana

Quisisana (left) and Wide Waters (right) c. 1950

Wide Waters c. 1950

South East Yard, Wide Waters c. 1950