We sent the summer at Atwood Lake between 1961 to 1973.  My Dad built an A-frame cabin with the help of family.  We went swimming every day and did paper routes all around the lake to make money.

New Cumberland - Country Store

Dairy Queen


Paper route

Sunset Valley

Paper route


Atwood Lake Dam

Lakeshore Dr (Paper route)

Completed A-frame cabin with master bedroom in apex

One tree per kid and the a cabin overlooked the lake

Christmas at the cabin in the early 70’s

Spiral staircase up the bedroom

Same cabin in the 2013

My dad enlisted his father and uncle to help him build the an A-Frame cabin with a steel frame.  They were steel workers and understood building with steel (See video below).  The house was up on the side of the hill and my grandfather told my father to ground the steel structure to the well because it would get hit by lighting.  It was at least once, we were standing on the balcony during a rain storm watching the pouring rain and lighting and the peak of the house was “HIT”.  We only lost a few shingles.


Living on a lake required boats and we had a small motor boat and a Sunfish.  The lake was a designated sailing lake and boats were limited to a 20 HP engine.  My Dad said “Boats were a hole in the water in which you throw money” but he did enjoy them.  I learned to ski and use the Kipsled.   Rebecca was particularly good on the Zipsled (See video below).


All summer long, we went swimming every day.  We had half dozen different choices.  Mom named the cabin “Hungry Hill” because she was always feeding us.

My dad volunteered us to be paper boys and girls for the Cleveland Plain Dealer and the Canton Repository.  It started with Jeff and I doing Lakeshore Drive.  As we got older and had more help, it expanded to the campground across the lake and the neighboring development called Sunset Valley.  I used to drive the boat across the lake and deliver papers in the campground everyday.  The weekends were a big deal in the campgrounds and the Cleveland Plain Dealer had a huge Sunday edition.   We got a good workout.  One time, the station wagon was so full, the rear tires went flat.

Jeff and I lived on our bike and made frequent trips to the dam to catch crawfish, the Dairy Queen for ice cream and New Cumberland for candy.  New Cumberland was three miles but we did not care.

The cabin did not have good laundry machine, so we went to a laundromat in New Philadelphia.  It helped Mom to get the laundry done quickly and we loved the freedom to run around the plaza, go to Burger King and eat the new “Whopper” and buy candy corn.  

My Dad liked to tease and on the way to the cabin was a swamp he called the “Black lagoon” to scare us.  He also used to drive fast, so we would go flying over the little country road humps and hills, and squeal with delight.

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