Saturday was World Laboratory Day, so what better way to celebrate than with a photograph of our home, the Saranac Laboratory! This photograph was taken by tuberculosis patient Fletcher Durbin sometime around 1911. The image shows how the Laboratory originally looked before its expansion in the 1920s.
Learn more about the history of the Saranac Laboratory on our wiki!
[Historic Saranac Lake Collection, 2020.2.84]
William Kollecker (seated with camera) and employees (and a strange little friend) outside of the Kollecker Kodak and Gift Shop on Main St., August 1914. Kollecker came to Saranac Lake for his health as a young man, and started his career working for Lake Placid photographer William Cheesman. Kollecker's shop sold photographic prints, postcards, gifts, and of course, genuine Kodak products. Kollecker was a prolific photographer and his shop was known for its elaborate window displays, especially around Christmastime. The store closed when Kollecker died in 1962.
Learn more about William Kollecker on our wiki.
[Historic Saranac Lake Collection, 2020.9.2.92]
It's National Library Week, so we're celebrating our favorite one, the Saranac Lake Free Library! This c. 1914 photograph of the Library shows it as it looked in its early days before the addition. We love the SLFL in all of its states!
We're so thankful for libraries and library workers, this week and always! Happy National Library Week!
Historic Saranac Lake Collection, 2020.2.79.]
In honor of Women's History Month, we want to highlight some women we have only learned about recently! Tarsilla Schuster is seated at left on the porch of a platform tent "Idle Rest," at the New York State Hospital at Ray Brook (AKA Ray Brook Sanatorium) c. 1914. The woman seated at right may be either C. or E. Rowley.
Tarsilla and her husband William were both patients at Ray Brook in the early 1900s and 1910s. The family's collection of photographs and letters has helped us learn more about Ray Brook Sanatorium in that time period, as well as shining light on the difficulties that the families of patients faced.
[Historic Saranac Lake Collection, 2021.1.76. Courtesy of John Cromie.]
March kicks off Women's History Month, so we're highlighting Stony Wold Sanatorium, which originally opened as a women-only facility. The facility offered care for women who did not have the means to pay for treatment for the disease. It was started by Elizabeth Newcomb on Lake Kushaqua in 1901, and at its peak in the 1930s it consisted of 20 buildings and a farm, and generated its own electricity. This photograph came from the album of Lillian Synoracki Wilczak, who cured at Stony Wold in the late 1920s.
Learn more on our wiki.
[Historic Saranac Lake Collection. Courtesy of Karen Jaobs.]
February is Black History Month, so we want to share the stories of some of the Black residents of Saranac Lake throughout the years! Sadie Hall (pictured at right, with Gisele Vicino) owned the Hall Cottage on Margaret Street with her husband Bill. It was possibly one of the cure cottages in Saranac Lake that catered only to Black patients. While Black patients could stay at some of the integrated sanatoria and cure cottages in the area, there were a handful of cure cottages open exclusively to Black health-seekers. The Halls were known for their elaborate meals, and the whole neighborhood was welcome at their table. Sadie died in Saranac Lake in 1966 after many years in the village.
[Historic Saranac Lake Collection, courtesy of Dawn Richardson.]
Saturday is National Hug a Nurse Day, so who better to celebrate this Tuberculosis Thursday than the nurses who worked with TB patients in Saranac Lake! This photograph shows the 1931 graduating class of the nursing school at Trudeau Sanatorium.
The D. Ogden Mills Training School for Nurses started in 1912 to train former patients as nurses, with the idea that they would less susceptible to illness, and had an understanding of the experience of curing.
Thank you to nurses past and present for all of your hard work!
Learn more about the Training School on our wiki.
[Historic Saranac Lake Collection, TCR 582. Courtesy of Jan Dudones.]
It's REALLY cold, so be sure to bundle up before you hang out with your friends outside! These unidentified tuberculosis patients are wearing fashionable fur coats, which were popular with patients because they spent most of their days out on cure porches, regardless of the weather. Socializing was an important part of keeping the patients' spirits up!
[Historic Saranac Lake Collection, 2021.6.16. Courtesy of Karen Lewis and Beth Glover.
Stay up to date on all the news and happenings from Historic Saranac Lake at the Saranac Laboratory Museum!