Tuesday, July 11, 2006
7/11/06- A Tragic Anniversary
Well, it's here at last. Today is officially the 100th anniversary of Grace Brown's tragic murder at Big Moose Lake at the the hands of her one-time lover, Chester Gillette, an event that historians have referred to as "The Murder That Will Never Die."
Today, thousands of people from all over the country will be at the site where Grace was killed. The events that they have planned include the unveiling of a historic marker at the site of the Glenmore Hotel where Chester and Grace embarked on their fatal rowboat ride, as well as a stamp cancellation where a stamp commemorating the murder's anniversary will be revealed. There will also be boat tours on the lake during the day following the route that Chester and Grace took in the rowboat. There will also be a book signing by Craig Brandon, the leading expert on the case and author of the books "Murder in the Adirondacks" and most recently, "Grace Brown's Love Letters."
The main event will happen in the afternoon when boats will gather at the site where Grace's body was found on July 12, 1906. The final letter will be recited and a memorial wreath will be placed in the lake by a descendant of Marjorie Carey, the woman who heard Grace's final scream. Descendants of the key players in the case will be in the boat, including Grace's descendants.
Sadly, I will not be up there due to work commitments that I could not get out of. That is why I am online here at the library instead of up there. However, I decided to make a last minute addition. I arranged to have a dozen red roses sent up to be put in the lake along with the wreath. I got this idea from her letters in which she stated that she loved red roses. The roses are basically to let Grace know that even though I could not be up there for her memorial, it will at least let her know that I haven't forgotten her.
When I delivered them to the Historical Society yesterday morning, I was told that by buying the roses, I had done the best thing possible for Grace. Even though I could not be up there, I may still have another chance to pay my respects to Grace in August when I go on the bus trip because one of the stops is to her grave in South Otselic. Then I was offered the suggestion that if I ever did go to Big Moose Lake that it would be best if I went alone so that it would be a private matter between myself and Grace. In some ways, I do think that it would be the best thing for me to do.
Tomorrow is another anniversary of sorts. Tomorrow is the one-year anniversary of the day I became involved with the Gillette Case when I stumbled upon that newspaper clipping. Since then I have learned enough via the books on the case and the Internet to launch this site. Also in the process, I found myself developing feelings for Grace, especially after receiving a copy of the final letter. It is like she has become a permanent part of me.
In closing, I would like to say one more thing. To Grace, wherever you are, I hope that you like the flowers that I sent up for you. May you continue to rest in peace.