The Arcady Club was owned by Joseph Lowe of Pelham, NY. In 2008 I had a conversation with Dr. Charles Upton Lowe, son of the owners, He informed me that the original club building was built on the shore of Lake George in the town of Hague, New York circa 1920 and burned shortly thereafter.
Joseph Lowe then hired Ward Grover Shippey, architect of Glens Falls, New York to rebuild the club. Construction started in 1922 and continued in phases through 1940 as additions and modifications were made to the site.
Dr. Lowe mentioned to me that the fire was started in the spring time and that his father was impressed with the speed with which Architect Shippey was able to design, supervise and hire local workers to rebuild the club. The Lowe’s were able to open the club in time for summer visitors.
The first building, the administration building, was built in 1922 and modified in 1929. Note the interesting “flying end supports” of the roof that add such an interesting architectural feature.
Attached to the Administration building was the Arcady Club Social Hall also built in the same period. In 1939, Ward Shippey did a study for the renovation of the interior lounge as shown below.
Ward Shippey was commissioned to do another study in 1939 for renovation of an addition to the lake front of the Social Hall.
As part of the original plan a common a large rectangular dining hall with hip roof was also added in 1922. Note that the exterior support braces compliment the roof line of the front porch.
A number of guest cottages of varied architectural styles were built to accommodate guests during the summer season on Lake George.
The Arcady club offered numerous venues for recreation and entertainment. A golf course was built on the property along with tennis courts. There were numerous pathways and stone stair cases built to provide access throughout the property.
Watersports and boating was not forgotten.
Ward Shippey provided an undated study for the recreation pier that borrowed from Japanese design elements.
In the end a slightly more simplistic design for the recreation pier was constructed.
Of course no lakefront summer club would not be complete without a boathouse. The collection at the Warren County NY Historical Society has only one picture of the boathouse as designed by Architect Shippey.
I was grateful to have the opportunity to speak with Dr. Lowe via phone in 2008. At the time he informed me that his father owned another camp across Lake George for children. The idea was to provide a perfect vacation for the family. The parents could vacation for a week on the west side of Lake George enjoying adult amenities such as tennis, golf, swimming and boating. Nights were filled with music and dancing in the social hall.
At the same time children of the family were ferried across to the east side of the lake for the week to Camp Mohican where they filled the day with crafts, games, hiking, swimming, canoeing and sport competitions.
They too had evening entertainment of singing and storytelling around the campfire.
Note: All photographs were taken by Ward Grover Shippey.
edited by Tom Lynch, Collections Manager
contact: [email protected]
Source: Ward Grover Shippey Collection # 28
Warren County NY Historical Society.