Family History

I have been a 3 ½  Season Cottager in Honey Harbour since 1993 when my wife Nan and I bought her uncle’s property in the North Bay of Honey Harbour.  Uncle Peter (Haeberle) was very well known in the community as “ that flower guy”.  Peter grew plants and flowers for the Honey Harbour and eastern Georgian Bay communities while also looking after the gardens at the Delawana Inn.  We have so many great stories from so many neighbours about uncle Peter and how he made his mark in Honey Harbour.

Nan and I are now retired with a home in Newmarket and trying to live in Honey Harbour as much as possible.  Water access does have its limitations though.  Winter Cottaging with no running water and only an outhouse adds some ruggedness to the experience, but it is still a winter paradise.

We are blessed with having 3 wonderful adult children, Amanda (& Matt), Eric (& Robyn), Bryan (& Denise) and 5 grandchildren ranging in age from a few days to 5 years.

Nan’s side of our family is where the very long history of being on the shores of eastern Georgian Bay come from.  Family archives speak of long travels up from Rochester NY to Midland and then from there to the Honey Harbour area.  Early visits in the 1860’s to 1900’s were spent on the Minnehaha floating houseboat travelling from the Honey Harbour area to the mouth of the Moon River. The first property was purchased in 1910 on the north shore of the North Bay of Honey Harbour.  This was the site of so much family history here in the Harbour.  Nan’s grandparents, father, uncle and aunts spent full summers there exploring and enjoying the magic of Honey Harbour.

1948 saw the purchase of 2 more properties on the south shore of the North Bay, a few lots over from The Schoolhouse at Pleasant Point.  Nan’s grandfather and grandmother, George and Gertrude Haeberle were expanding from the Tuttle and Kendal families that had started on the north shore and wanted to make room for their growing family.

In about 1960 Nan’s parents sought out a new location for their family cottaging and found a lot they liked on Go Home Lake.  Coincidentally, my parents were also looking for a cottaging property and had found a lot they liked on Go Home Lake.  Back in the 60’s the world seemed big and travel on waterways was slow so even though Nan & I were only about a mile apart we did not meet until our mid teens.  That was the beginning of a new relationship and after college and university we married in 1977.

We thoroughly enjoyed our cottaging on Go Home Lake, but made many trips out to visit with family in Honey Harbour and trips up to Henry’s.  We longed to find a place on Georgian Bay.  When uncle Peter called in 1993 and told us he was selling and asked if we were interested, we had no hesitation, we said yes.  This has been the best decision we have made.  When we bought our kids were 8, 9 and 11.  Nan would pick up the kids at the end of school in June and live at the cottage all summer long.  What an incredible experience for the kids and our entire family.

When we bought in Honey Harbour, Nan’s parents had already sold their property on Go Home Lake and moved to Florida. My parents sold a year later and moved down to be with us in the Harbour.  We are currently involved in an expansion to our property so that we can provide comfortable accommodation for our expanding family and so we can continue the family legacy that started so many years ago.

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