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Emma Mead

Home Up Lunch Break The Camps

Emma Jane Camp was born in 1866 to Elijah and Elizabeth Kennedy Camp. Elijah was a grandson of Indian Lake's first settler,Sabael Benedict. They ran a lodge at Little Moose Lake where "Lige" would guide customers who had often come up on the train from the New York City area. They would be met at North Creek and driven over bumpy roads through Indian Lake and out along the Cedar River near an area now known as the Moose River Plains.

    As a young girl,Emma would help her mother with the cooking and cleaning. The summer of 1882 saw Robert Mead,a wealthy white man from Sing Sing [now Ossining] ,N.Y.,return for a stay . He brought with him Gabriel,his son,who was a heavy drinker. Gabriel and Emma fell in love,and when his father left for home,Gabriel stayed behind with Emma. They spent the winter together,and on Dec.26,1882,the Rev. G.W. Farrington,pastor of the Indian Lake Methodist Church,presided at their wedding.

    But in May of 1883,Gabriel's father and brother came to R.B. Jackson's house,located near the present Cedar River Cemetery,and sent for Gabriel. The family had disapproved of Gabriel marrying an Indian,and they were determined to put an end to this union. Gabriel was drugged and taken to the train in North Creek. He was later put in the Utica Insane Asylum.

    The Mead family lawyer arranged for a $10,000 payment to Emma for agreeing to an annulment of the marriage. She reluctantly agreed,and bought a store in town with the money.

    In 1885,Gabriel returned to Indian Lake,and they were remarried. They were together for eight months,and when Emma became pregnant,Gabriel decided he needed to see his father for money,so in May he left.

    A daughter,Bessie,was born on July 15,1886. Gabriel never saw Bessie,for she fell off an upper-floor porch in 1890,while Emma was tending the store. A distraught Emma kept her vow to never marry again. Gabriel remarried,and did not return to Indian Lake.