Historical Association of South Jefferson

Gallou & Stoney Islands

Gallou Island, Little Gallou, Stony Island and Calf Island fall in the Town of Hounsfield, but are closer in proximity to the town of Henderson.

Fishing on Gallou and Stony Islands

(JCJ 7/22/1874)

Of all the places for fishing and recreation perhaps the islands adjacent to us hold the pre-eminence. Thinking thus, and with a friend, on Friday 10th inst. we two, after a delightful ride through the rich country between ADams and the lake, arrived at Henderson Harbor. Capt. Tyler knew just what kind of a row boat we wanted and satisfied us perfectly, provided us a good oarsman, Mr. Will Hammond, picked out trolling spoons for which the fish had a special hankering, supplied us with a pail of minnows, and after a good dinner at Capt. J.S. Warner's, we were off for the Island. A row of a few hours out of the bay, across Snowshoe bar and down by the high rocks, across the channel, here about four miles wide, brought us to the head of Stony Island, which, seveal miles in length, here bathes its green sides in the waters of the Ontario.

Trolling along the head of the island and with fair success, we crossed over to Calf Island, about a quarter of a mile further on, here cooked our fish for supper. Then a troll in the vicinity brought us a number of fine bass, several weighing between two and four pounds.

After a good night's rest in the shanty on Calf Island we passed over to Little Gallou, a mile or two distant, and there to Gallou Island, two miles further. Along the shoal below Johnston's mill and down to the foot of the island the fish were abundant and we drew them in till we were tired of the sport. A dinner on the gravelly beach was partaken of with a relish, after which the wind having risen, we put back to Johnson's bay and spent the afternoon there.

Here at present are camped a party of some 25 engaged in the U.S. Survey of the lakes, and their white tents can be seen miles away. All around this and the adjacent islands at distances of a few hundred feet apart, are set up posts numbered from I up to X. On the prominent headlands of the islands points of observation are erected, and the delineation of the coast, the position of the shoals, and the depth of the water are ascertained with accuracy and mapped out for the use of the government.

About five o'clock the wind still blowing strong, we tok passage with Messrs. Alden and Albert Stevens in their fine yacht, and with out skiff in tow, at sundown were safely moored in Henderson Harbor. The ride over was very fine, and as the Messrs. Stevens are among the most skillful sailors on the lake, as well as being gentlemen in every way, our ride of 10 or 12 miles surpassed anything we had ever enjoyed before.

A good supper at the Frontier House and a good night's rest found us ready for the Sabbath. Cap Tyler generously placed one of his boats at our disposal, and Mr. Orville Stevens and another gentleman rowed us over to the Point where we were engaged to preach. We found a good company gathered in a private house at Sabbath School. They evinced deep interest in the study of the Scriptures and gave good attention. Attending prayer meetings in the afternoon and evening and having again occasion to address them we could not but admire the spirit manifested by all, and rejoiced in the benefits that religion has lately bestowed in this vicinity. Rain in the evening prevented out returning then and we enjoyed the hospitality of Mr. Hiram Harris.

In the morning, recrossing the bay to the Harbor, we were soon away again with our friend, bound for Stony Island. The wind soon came up in a gale, after after still-fishing at SnowShoe, we lay by till near evening. Mr. York, and other fishermen from Pillar Point also lay by at Show Shoe till late in the afternoon, bound for the foot of Stony Island, where they have their fish shanties and take large quantities of fish in their nets in that vicinity and off the foot of Gallou Island. Accepting their invitation to sail over with them, we took our skiff in tow and were off. We were in the "Dart," a fine sailor, and, though out companion yacht the "Comet" had nothing to tow, the Dart arrived at the Island several moments ahead. A heavy sea was rolling, and the ride over the hugh waves was exhilerating and grand. Our friends gave us comfortable shelter over night, and have our thanks for many favors.

Tuesday morning, a troll up theisland around the bay where the old wreck still lies under water, and along the head of the island gave us the finest fishing we have ever known. Before the afternoon had passed, 51 beautiful bass, many of them of large size were taken. Tired at length from the very abundance of the gamy creatures, we turned our skiff Harbor-ward, and at 10 o'clock were agin in comfortable quarters at the Frontier House. Our oarsman took good care to place out fish in Capt. Tyler's ice house, and in the morning they were packed in ice and we took the stage for home.

We have never enjoyed finer sport, had better fishing or fell into better hands. When we want a good time again we shall secure one of Capt. Tyler's boats and enjoy again the fishing and boating of Henderson Harbor and the lake adjacent.