I was only six when I first went on a family trip to Humarock, a delightful little seaside community in Massachusetts where the Town of Scituate and the Town of Marshfield meet. It was then that I heard this fantastic story of a great hurricane that swept in and relocated the mouth of the local river. Making it even more fascinating to a young boy was that the brother of my maternal aunt's mother-in-law was duck hunting and was drowned at the site where the new mouth of the river was opened in the storm.
More recently I have learned that the storm was really a nor'easter, the Portland Gale of 26 November 1898, and not a hurricane. For details of the storm and of the loss of the steamer Portland one should consult Warnings Ignored! by Fred Freitas and Dave Ball. Much to my surprise and delight I found in that book a picture of Albert Tilden, the distant relative of the tale I had heard as a child, together with Fred and Bert Henderson, two of the young men that perished with him that night.
When my aunt died in the 1960s I inherited from her an antique desk with "secret" drawers. She had inherited it from her in-laws. In those drawers I found a collection of obituraries clipped from newspapers over the years. It is from those obituaries that I have assembled the following files.
|Home Card, Albert Tilden|
|http://skaneateles.org and http://web.cortland.edu/woosterk|
|27 Abdallah Avenue
Cortland, NY 13045-3302