Help me write a book about Fort Ticonderoga

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writer

Cobleskill, NY

#1 Jul 8, 2008
I am a Ticonderoga resident (for almost 2 yrs. now) who is starting the book people have been telling me to write my whole life. As a Pell descendant I used to live at the Fort and in the Pavilion, so my viewpoint is unique and I've got some good stories to tell. There are even more stories I want to hear, and for that I need you. I'm addicted to Topix, have gotten into some heated "debates" and expect some nasty comments from a relative or 2. But I'm sure that Topix is the best way to get started, and I plan to structure part of the book in the form of a blog. I don't want to violate Topix rules so please send personal information (such as names) only to ticonderogabook@aol.com. I'll be more than happy to credit anyone who helps, and I also assure you of complete anonymity if you wish. Don't worry about insulting me or my family, I'm used to it, and the juicier the stories, the better.
so sad

Albany, NY

#2 Jul 8, 2008
writer wrote:
I am a Ticonderoga resident (for almost 2 yrs. now) who is starting the book people have been telling me to write my whole life. As a Pell descendant I used to live at the Fort and in the Pavilion, so my viewpoint is unique and I've got some good stories to tell. There are even more stories I want to hear, and for that I need you. I'm addicted to Topix, have gotten into some heated "debates" and expect some nasty comments from a relative or 2. But I'm sure that Topix is the best way to get started, and I plan to structure part of the book in the form of a blog. I don't want to violate Topix rules so please send personal information (such as names) only to ticonderogabook@aol.com. I'll be more than happy to credit anyone who helps, and I also assure you of complete anonymity if you wish. Don't worry about insulting me or my family, I'm used to it, and the juicier the stories, the better.
Sad, go tazer yourself douchebag.
writer

Cobleskill, NY

#3 Jul 8, 2008
Charming, but thanks for contributing anyway. Are we related?

By the way, I'm not setting out to write a mean-spirited "Mommmy Dearest" tell-all. Just putting together true behind the scenes stories about an interesting place and time, and the story about how this book develops.
max mojo

Rochester, NY

#4 Jul 9, 2008
Dear Writer;

You cannot isolate Fort Ticonderoga from Ticonderoga, nor from Vermont.

What year? Which decade? 250 years contain a whole lot of stories.

Before that; 3000 years of human habitation in the Champlain Valley, before the existence of
Ticonderoga, contain stories, if heard by europeans, they would've kept Duncan Cambell at home.

Would you like to hear one of those stories?
yes

Ballston Spa, NY

#5 Jul 9, 2008
max mojo wrote:
Dear Writer;
You cannot isolate Fort Ticonderoga from Ticonderoga, nor from Vermont.
What year? Which decade? 250 years contain a whole lot of stories.
Before that; 3000 years of human habitation in the Champlain Valley, before the existence of
Ticonderoga, contain stories, if heard by europeans, they would've kept Duncan Cambell at home.
Would you like to hear one of those stories?
yes
yes

Ballston Spa, NY

#6 Jul 9, 2008
writer wrote:
I am a Ticonderoga resident (for almost 2 yrs. now) who is starting the book people have been telling me to write my whole life. As a Pell descendant I used to live at the Fort and in the Pavilion, so my viewpoint is unique and I've got some good stories to tell. There are even more stories I want to hear, and for that I need you. I'm addicted to Topix, have gotten into some heated "debates" and expect some nasty comments from a relative or 2. But I'm sure that Topix is the best way to get started, and I plan to structure part of the book in the form of a blog. I don't want to violate Topix rules so please send personal information (such as names) only to ticonderogabook@aol.com. I'll be more than happy to credit anyone who helps, and I also assure you of complete anonymity if you wish. Don't worry about insulting me or my family, I'm used to it, and the juicier the stories, the better.
What the hell do tell about a pell.
writer

Cobleskill, NY

#7 Jul 9, 2008
max mojo wrote:
Dear Writer;
You cannot isolate Fort Ticonderoga from Ticonderoga, nor from Vermont.
What year? Which decade? 250 years contain a whole lot of stories.
Before that; 3000 years of human habitation in the Champlain Valley, before the existence of
Ticonderoga, contain stories, if heard by europeans, they would've kept Duncan Cambell at home.
Would you like to hear one of those stories?
I agree with you and I'd love to hear those stories. The more layers and depth to this book the better. That's a perfect metaphor for what you describe...the layers of history that took place in the area and specifically there.

The primary focus of this book is what happened there during my life span, since 1957. I suppose I'm trying to find meaning in the chaos that is my life. Being a member of this family, and living like pseudo-royalty when in the company of my grand-parents the Pells was a pretty warping experience for a middle-class girl from California.
writer

Cobleskill, NY

#8 Jul 9, 2008
My very first impressions of Ticonderoga was the smell. My family stayed in the "Archae House", a little house built for archaeologists 100 years ago, and burned to the ground in recent years. At age 5 I didn't know if the smell was from effluence in the polluted Lake or in the air. Funny now to think of all the snooty noses in the air going to tea and dinner with that "poopy" smell permeating everything.

I get a whiff of it every once in a while still. Anyone know what gives the mill smoke that odor? On another forum they're talking about poisoned fields. Any info on that?
What-

AOL

#9 Jul 9, 2008
This is a set up and someone with a large axe to grind is gathering information. don't forget things are quite heated at the Fort right now.
writer

Cobleskill, NY

#10 Jul 9, 2008
What- wrote:
This is a set up and someone with a large axe to grind is gathering information. don't forget things are quite heated at the Fort right now.
Please get off my case, cousin. It's really tiresome. You're the one who goes around threatening to sue the Fort board members and management, or to send me a cease and desist for posting my thoughts on Topix. I have no interest in causing you, Fort Ticonderoga or anyone else trouble. I plan to write nothing untrue or skewed.

I'm working on a genuine personal memoire, because the facts of my dreary life are set in the surreal world of the Fort Pells, and you know that's a hell of a story even better than I do. There's insight to be had about American social history, sex bias, sexual abuse, family dynamics, the world of the ultra-rich, small town life, and more.

The more you post on here the more you will validate my story, and create interest for my book, so thanks!
Help how

Englewood, CO

#11 Jul 9, 2008
How can the residents of Ticonderoga help you?
Can you be more specific?
writer

Cobleskill, NY

#12 Jul 9, 2008
Thanks for asking me to be more specific. Because I want so much information I realize I'm being vague.

The thing I'd like most are the day to day stories of working at the Fort, especially the Pavilion. My grandparents were John and Pyrma Pell, and they were special characters. They lived in the Pavilion in the summer for most of their lives, until he died in 1987.(At that point the Fort Association took over management of everything, and my family's way of life, the garden parties and elegant country lifestyle, came to an end.) They were loved by some, hated by many. I loved them of course but am objective, and am dying to reconnect with the people who worked with them. I know there are a million anecdotes of their bizarre lifestyle and the demands they made on staff. I've always wondered how hard it must have been for the town residents to don maid's uniforms and take orders from my granny, who was not a very sensitive person, let's say.

Their "reign" at Fort Ti ended 20 years ago, which is a long time, but not so long that there's no one left living who was there. Please don't be shy about sharing your experiences.

An example: someone - in the late 70's or early 80's - wrote something raunchy in the lead trough which is still in the King's Garden, about my granny. We always assumed it was kitchen staff that she had really p***** off (as usual). And that she probably deserved it. I'd give anything to know the story behind the event that inspired it, etc. I hope it was an employee, rather than a cousin, but if it was, I really don't care. I'm not looking to pick new or pick up old fights, just to record the true history of the place and maybe even heal some old wounds.
Choose to be happy-

Cobleskill, NY

#13 Jul 9, 2008
I think it would be a much bigger honor to the fort and to the people who loved it to focus on what made it, and them, so great, and worth remembering. Why focus on the negative? If you want juicy tidbits and scandal, pick up a tabloid and dish on Hollywood; surely the legacy of the fort, this town, and all of the people involved, past and present, should be remembered as one of greatness- not gossip.
Not the point

Englewood, CO

#14 Jul 9, 2008
I believe you are missing the point. I don't think that this writer is interested in writing a grand manifesto in praise of the Pells, the Fort, its former or current employees. Honestly, hasn't that, in effect, already been done??
Good writers write for their audience. The Fort, and its people, past and present, are what they are, were what they were. I, for one, would find what this writer has proposed, so far, an interesting read.
Why your emotionally charged response??
Choose to be happy- wrote:
I think it would be a much bigger honor to the fort and to the people who loved it to focus on what made it, and them, so great, and worth remembering. Why focus on the negative? If you want juicy tidbits and scandal, pick up a tabloid and dish on Hollywood; surely the legacy of the fort, this town, and all of the people involved, past and present, should be remembered as one of greatness- not gossip.
FlippingYouOff

Pittsfield, MA

#15 Jul 9, 2008
writer wrote:
that "poopy" smell permeating everything.
I get a whiff of it every once in a while still. Anyone know what gives the mill smoke that odor? On another forum they're talking about poisoned fields. Any info on that?
it's hydrogen sulfide.
it's a gas that is given off during the paper making process and subsequent water treatment process.

no, it doesn't poison fields. It oxidizes quickly which means it disperses quickly.
FlippingYouOff

Pittsfield, MA

#16 Jul 9, 2008
i think you had better rethink the purpose behind your book because something like what you have in mind will come back to bite you in the ass.

Did you ever read an American author named Thomas Wolfe? He wrote a book about a guy who wrote a book about his hometown. It was fairly successful and when the guy came back to his hometown, people were none too pleased about the way they were portrayed or the skeletons that had been dragged out of a bunch of closets.

It was aptly titled, "You Can Never Go Home Again". You might want to give this a read and second guess your reasons for writing this book and make sure that you are willing to take that risk of being ostracized...
Suggestions

Manchester, NH

#17 Jul 9, 2008
Have you consider setting up a blog or a website? I think it might be a good start. Also, I think you might be more feedback than you will from this site. Just some thoughts.

P.S. Didn't your grandmother have an unusual nickname??
writer wrote:
Thanks for asking me to be more specific. Because I want so much information I realize I'm being vague.
The thing I'd like most are the day to day stories of working at the Fort, especially the Pavilion. My grandparents were John and Pyrma Pell, and they were special characters. They lived in the Pavilion in the summer for most of their lives, until he died in 1987.(At that point the Fort Association took over management of everything, and my family's way of life, the garden parties and elegant country lifestyle, came to an end.) They were loved by some, hated by many. I loved them of course but am objective, and am dying to reconnect with the people who worked with them. I know there are a million anecdotes of their bizarre lifestyle and the demands they made on staff. I've always wondered how hard it must have been for the town residents to don maid's uniforms and take orders from my granny, who was not a very sensitive person, let's say.
Their "reign" at Fort Ti ended 20 years ago, which is a long time, but not so long that there's no one left living who was there. Please don't be shy about sharing your experiences.
An example: someone - in the late 70's or early 80's - wrote something raunchy in the lead trough which is still in the King's Garden, about my granny. We always assumed it was kitchen staff that she had really p***** off (as usual). And that she probably deserved it. I'd give anything to know the story behind the event that inspired it, etc. I hope it was an employee, rather than a cousin, but if it was, I really don't care. I'm not looking to pick new or pick up old fights, just to record the true history of the place and maybe even heal some old wounds.
I dont agree

Englewood, CO

#18 Jul 9, 2008
I think this writer should write this book that he/she wants to write and for a variety of reasons. And no, I'm not parading around my house with an American flag, signing the national anthem while defending the so-called freedom of the press.(Like there is any such thing in this country any longer anyway!)
The worse possible scenario would be what? Having to leave Ti? I think ANY TIME someone finds ANY reason to leave Ti is cause for celebration!!
For heaven's sake, we're not talking about author Salman Rushdie here. Are we?? ;-)
And, yes there are people who remember this writer's grandparents who are still alive, some that worked at the Pavillion and the Fort and do remember. And they are only middle-aged people. There are also interesting stories that folks were told by their parents and grandparents. Not a whole lot of secrets here. It's just not in book form. Yet...
FlippingYouOff wrote:
i think you had better rethink the purpose behind your book because something like what you have in mind will come back to bite you in the ass.
Did you ever read an American author named Thomas Wolfe? He wrote a book about a guy who wrote a book about his hometown. It was fairly successful and when the guy came back to his hometown, people were none too pleased about the way they were portrayed or the skeletons that had been dragged out of a bunch of closets.
It was aptly titled, "You Can Never Go Home Again". You might want to give this a read and second guess your reasons for writing this book and make sure that you are willing to take that risk of being ostracized...
Do Tell

Cobleskill, NY

#19 Jul 9, 2008
What about the TeReile's? Tilly and her kids I think were close enough that they could tell some good information. Maybe call Tilly and avoid all this chatter.
writer

Cobleskill, NY

#20 Jul 9, 2008
Not the point wrote:
I believe you are missing the point. I don't think that this writer is interested in writing a grand manifesto in praise of the Pells, the Fort, its former or current employees. Honestly, hasn't that, in effect, already been done??
Good writers write for their audience. The Fort, and its people, past and present, are what they are, were what they were. I, for one, would find what this writer has proposed, so far, an interesting read.
Why your emotionally charged response??
<quoted text>
Thanks for your defense of my proposal. I'm really not focusing on the negative or on gossip, though I can see why my choice of words like juicy made it seem so. I want to include all the gossip I can gather, so in some cases I can correct misperceptions, actually. I'm looking for the real, human stories, the many layers of life that went on in this interesting place during the 20th century. There is no other privately owned historical site like the Fort was then, or even now, and the people and their roles in making it work are interesting.

Maybe likening it more to "Upstairs, Downstairs", the PBS series would make my viewpoint clearer. Though I'm also fascinated by how the use of technology, the blogosphere, the dynamics of Ti Topix will tie in to the development of this book. That may take me in a completely different direction than I anticipate now.

Believe me, I loved my grandparents and adored my time there...I felt like a princess. I think they did a great job, but they weren't perfect and as I said, I will not slant this in any way, either to aggrandize or malign. Just the truth, in it's many forms, is what I'm after.

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