Have you ever heard of Thousand Island Dressing? Have you ever heard of the Thousand Island Region of Upstate New York? This past weekend I was fortunate enough to visit Alexandria Bay, NY and if you have not yet visited then give it a try.
Let’s get back to the dressing. In the early 1900’s a women named Sofia Lalonde concocted a dressing which became a local Favorite. Sofia lived in Clayton, NY which was nestled in the Thousand Island Region on New York State. The Respite eventually made its way to a part time summer resident George Boldt who happened to own the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in New York City. He was so enthralled with the flavor of the dressing that he ordered it on the Waldorf Astoria’s Menu which catapulted the dressing to become the Thousand Island Dressing which is so famous today.
This takes us to George C Boldt and his famous castle (please see the photos above). The story goes that he builds this castle for a summer home for his wife. Four years into the project, she passes away. Mr. Boldt then halts all constructions and vacates the property. The unfinished Castle actually sits vacant for 70 years until the mid 70’s when NY State Acquires the property. They hype this as the saddest story ever told. Don’t get me wrong, love lost is a tragic event and I can only sympathize with the sorrow Mr. Boldt endured. As sad as his loss was I feel that his emotions could have been channeled in a more positive direction to lay a tribute to his diseased wife. Instead all the effort that was put forth to construct this glorious Island Castle becomes wasted along with his grief. Why not finish the castle and pass it along to charity in her honor. In the End it was Mr. Boldt’s money to waste. I truly believe that grief and intense emotions can be channeled in a positive direction and it saddens me that the man could have turned a horrifically ugly and sad situation into something positive. To let this castle just waste away for 70 years just seems criminal given that it could have been used for other such positive endeavors. Either way you look at it the story of the Boldt Castle is a sad one but it’s a wondrous site to behold and is worth the trip alone.