History from the O'Carroll Family
(part of the Bailey subdivision)
As you know everyone's perspective and recollection can differ quite a bit. I can tell you that all the O'Carroll family memories have been very fond of such a special place in our hearts. We are particularly lucky that Lake Manitouwabing is located just north of some other beautiful lakes but we do not have the crowds and are able to enjoy our lake in a more special way. John, Garry and Declan arrived from Ireland in '58 as young boys with our parents Brendan and Kathleen and never lost our love of travel.
I now live in California. Garry lives in Calgary and Brian, who was born in Canada lives just outside Jasper National Park. Declan was the only one to stay close to what we all still call home and is able to take our parents to the cottage regularly.
Each year opening up the cottage reminds us of the movie "On Golden Pond".
For years we camped throughout Ontario. My father said he would only settle for a cottage if he could have his own island. Our "uncle" John Gillan found an island at the lake and when we were up to help him plan the construction of his cottage Dad exploring the nearby island discovered a For Sale sign that had fallen over. My Mother known for never taking no for an answer called and to our delight found it was still for sale and by a divorcing couple. What great luck! This was '75 with high gas prices and everything seemed to be in our favour.
We soon settled in adding our own touches to the existing "hunters cabin" and constructing the Gillan Viceroy cottage just across from our island. Many of our friends and relatives shared in our adventures that year. We were, and may I still say the envy of those lucky enough to have spent time with us at the island.
In '78 we experienced a great shock that took time to get over. Returning to Toronto after a fun Father's Day weekend there was a call telling us that the cottage had burned to the ground. Thankfully due to very still weather there was little damage to the surrounding trees. The cottage was well insured and was replaced with a beautiful Viceroy summer home rivalling anything else on the lake.
Times have changed and the super cottages that have gone up around are spectacular but can not hold a candle to the place we all love so much and return every year to enjoy and continue making fond memories that we will cherish for our lifetimes.
The Gillan family has sold out and have since passed away only survived by 2 of their 3 children, Cathy and Joanne. Many others have come and gone as well. New memories are being created by those that are now coming to this beautiful lake and the O'Carroll brothers all hope to spend even more time at the island when we retire, which won't be too far off.