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Subject: Jew Pond: My hometown makes the news again

Written By: MaxwellSmart on 03/15/12 at 11:51 pm

Jon Stewart's remarks on Jew Pond

Last time my old hometown of Mont Vernon, New Hampshire, made the national news the story was of a marauding band of teenagers who murdered a Mont Vernon woman in her home.  That was back in 2009.

Now the reckoning has come for the dubiously named pool in Carleton Park named Jew Pond.  This story also made "The Daily Show" on 3/15/12. 

Here is a link to the story and an unintentionally Mont Vernon funny video by a college student.

My family moved out of Mont Vernon in 1983 when I was fourteen, but Mont Vernon feels like my hometown nonetheless.  News stories often feature people, families, and neighborhoods that were not there when I was a child.  After all, I haven't lived there for nearly thirty years and the town is now an exurban bedroom community.

But this story tweaks my sentiments.  Mr. and Mrs. Carleton, Mrs. Wilkins, and Mr. Naber who was on the DS story, I'm surprised any of you are still on this side of the great hereafter!  Forgive them, they're old school.  Mr. Carleton's argument that neither Stearn's Pond nor Horton's Pond no longer named by Stearns or Hortons misses the point.  I would have ask him if he still decorates his lawn with animals he shot and stuffed himself and how is granddaughter Linda is doing, I had a crush on her in sixth grade.  BTW, I nearly drowned in Stearn's pond one winter when I fell through the ice.

I also fell through the ice on Jew Pond once.  In fact, Jew Pond was a place designated for children to fish in the summer and skate in the winter, but it rarely got used for those purposes.  My friends and I used to float miniature boats out there, which we would bombard with rocks until they sank.  Sometimes for sweet revenge we'd throw and enemies bicycle or catcher's mitt in the pond.  We crashed a few remote control planes into Jew Ponds shallow depths and rained it with ill-gotten bottle rockets and M-80s.  At night the older kids would cruise down Grand Hill Road to smoke, drink, get high, and get laid.  Occasionally the local constabulary would roust them out. Beer cans, cigarette butts, joint roaches, spent prophylactics, articles of clothing, residuals from junk food wrappers, and char marks from campfires abounded.  Carleton Park was kinda ghetto.  It was not the oasis of Thoreau as the video depicts it.

The Tribune story has it wrong.  It was always Jew Pond.  It was always, "Hey, let's go drink at Jew Pond!"  "Yeah, we'll meet up at Jew Pond."  Nobody called it Carleton Park.  Sometimes the town would stock it with fish, but the kids dumb enough to fish in there were more likely to catch a flip-flop. a boot, or a bicycle tire than a trout!

In the late seventies the Pestanas, a family who owned a prosperous pest control business and lived on Grand Hill tried to buy the property from the town to improve it, but the deal never went through. 

The video mentions two Jewish Lawyers bought the Grand Hill Hotel in 1927 and tried to rename the pond Serene Lake.  The locals didn't cotton to it, so the gentiles started calling it Jew Pond.  Thus it has been for eighty years.  I never knew the story of the two Jews until this story broke.  When I was growing up, honestly, we never thought about why it was called Jew Pond.

I did know automobile travel and the depression wiped out Mont Vernon as a summer resort town, and that the Grand Hotel was stuck by lighting on Labor Day Weekend, 1930, and burned to the ground.  No one ever commented on the connection with Jew Pond, not even an old-time family like the Carletons!

It is fun to see Route 13 with its familiar Congregational Church, town hall,firehouse, general store, and library.  Quite a blast from the past.

One often wonders how a place called "Old N*gg*r Lake," New York, could still be called that.  As with Jew Pond, the answer rests with the geezers who don't much care to call it anything else,that's what it's called, and that's that.  My guess is they will change the pond's name to Carleton Pond and be done with it.  Mrs. Wilkins and her octogenarian friends will call it "Jew Pond" until the day they die!

Subject: Re: Jew Pond: My hometown makes the news again

Written By: LyricBoy on 03/16/12 at 8:19 pm

It's like Presbyterian Hospital in the Burgh.  :P

Subject: Re: Jew Pond: My hometown makes the news again

Written By: MaxwellSmart on 03/16/12 at 9:38 pm

It's like Presbyterian Hospital in the Burgh.  :P

Don't try and Presbyterian me down on the deal!

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