Mail began to be carried on the Lake in the late 1800’s, but the first official date was 1892 when Rural Free Delivery Route #7 was set up under contract to Dr. George Saltmarsh with the vessel Robert and Arthur the first mailboat. In 1896 the Dolphin replaced it in service, and in 1906 the mail contract put the newly launched Uncle Sam onto the run as the third mailboat. In 1916, by Act of Congress (the only such incident in the United States to date), the Uncle Sam became the only floating-post office. For the years 1932 & 3 the Marshall Foch took the honors, but it was displaced in ’34 by the Uncle Sam I, which ran uninterrupted until destroyed due to old age after the end of the 1961 season. 1962 saw a new Uncle Sam II, a 72 foot converted PT-Boat, brought in by rail and launched for the increased traffic from many countries.
UNCLE SAM Mailboat
Typical delivery day
Starting point and deep water terminus on Lake Winnipesaikee.
Mecca for vacation pleasure seekers.
Summer home of Dr. Maxie N. Woodring and vacation spot for the faculty of Columbia University.
Beauty spot and present summer residence of Methodist Bishop G. Btromley Oxnam and Dr. Henry Hitt Crane.
Second largest island as well as heaviest populated on Lake Winnipesaukee.
Formerly occupied by John Shepard III, President of the Yankee Network.
Three Mile Island:
From their sixty cottages and tents located here, members of the Applachian Mountain Club of Boston view one of the most beautiful combinations of lake, mountain, and shoreline scenery to be found in the world. The list of summer residents would fill a “Who’s Who” book of authors.
East Bear Island:
From here, may be had the finest view of Mt. Washington.
Privately occupied by Birch Island Associates and one of the first to be developed for summer cottage occupancy.
Over 50 years ago this island was purchased by the Boston Y.M.C.A. for a men’s camp. Today it is operated as a vacation camp for adults and families. Visitors are welcome anytime, if they make themselves known at the camp office. A five hour stayover is possible between the morning boat and the afternoon boat. Arrangements may be made for a family style lunch in the central dining hall or a snack at the lodge store.