Thursday, April 25, 2013

Start of FOA/Acadia NP's 2013 Volunteer Season
This Tuesday a group of volunteers raked drainage ditches, cleaned culverts and removed forest litter from the Kebo Brook Trail in Acadia National Park. This was the first day out for the volunteers this year and there will be many more days until the volunteer season ends with the arrival of next winter's snow.

The volunteers are under the aegis of Friends of Acadia, an independent nonprofit located in Bar Harbor, ME, with work projects selected by Acadia National Park. They meet at the flagpole outside Park Hq off Route 233 at 8:15 Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, depart for their assignments at 8:30 in Park-provided and equipped vans and return by noon. The work varies from easy to difficult, non-technical to technical and can accommodate physically fit youth to seniors. Contact FOA for additional information and other ways to volunteer (

Work break

Finished and smiling

Tuesday's task had the volunteers working on one of the Park's newest trails. The Kebo Brook Trail, a gently rising 1-mile trail, starts at Kebo Street beside Holy Redeemer Cemetery and ends near the Park Loop Road bridge over Route 233.*1

It parallels then crosses Kebo Brook, which originates in The Gorge between Dorr and Cadillac Mountains, and runs along the base of Kebo and Cadillac Mountains. Completed in 2012 by the Park's trails crew and FOA volunteers, it sets up access to several loop hikes by use of the Strath Eden Path, the Kebo Mountain Path, the Gorge Path, and the Cadillac North Ridge Trail.*2

Kebo Brook Trail (purple)
Strath Eden Path stone at trail junction

A nice feature of the Kebo Brook Trail is its easy accessibility from downtown Bar Harbor via the Great Meadow Loop Trail. It is a pleasant1-mile walk from the village green to the trailhead on Kebo Street.*3  Plans are in the offing for transportation this summer to the Park Loop Road end of the trail by the Island Explorer, a free shuttle bus service.

This FOA/ANP volunteer effort is fun and social and a unique way to get into the heart of one of America's best hiking and most beautiful national parks and contribute to its care and well-being. The physical exercise and exertion are also welcome personal benefits.


1 Kebo Brook Trail GPS coordinates:
Kebo Street: N44° 22.555'  W068° 12.827'
Park Loop Road: N44° 22.773'  W068° 13.930'
2 Strath Eden Path - an engraved stone identifying this path is at its junction with both the Hemlock Trail and the Hemlock Road near Sieur de Monts. GPS location:
N44° 21.997'  W068° 12.765'

3 See blog post "A Memorial Walk: Bar Harbor to Sieur de Monts," dated June 24, 2012.

Monday, April 15, 2013

The Satterlee Window
During my research of J.P. Morgan's 1910 purchase of Great Head and Sand Beach on Mount Desert Island, ME for his daughter Louisa Morgan Satterlee, I learned there was a Tiffany stained glass window depicting Great Head above the altar of the Episcopal Church of the Holy Innocents .*1

Church of the Holy Innocents

Holy Innocents is located in Highland Falls, NY. Church construction started in 1842. Robert Walter Weir, an artist of the Hudson River School and a 42-year professor of art at the U.S. Military Academy, West Point, provided the design and financing.*2
Among its parishioners were the Morgan, Satterlee and Tracy families. [Recap: J.P. Morgan married Frances Tracy; their daughter Louisa married Herbert Satterlee.] Morgan had bought a nearby summer home, "Cragston," overlooking the Hudson River, in 1871. He served the church as a vestryman and warden and provided financial support, including the building of a new rectory in 1897.
Window in Chancel
The Louis Comfort Tiffany-signed window, entitled "Creation," was installed in the church's chancel in 1922. It was the gift of Louisa in memory of her father. It states the opening to the Benedicite hymn of praise: "O all ye works of the Lord, bless ye the Lord: praise him and magnify him forever." It depicts massive Great Head and the sun rising above the ocean's horizon.
Closeup of Window
After a request to President Roosevelt by Interior Secretary Ickes to promote the national parks during National Parks Year, the U.S. Government issued a 7-cent "Acadia" stamp in October 1934. It featured the Great Head promontory and mirrored Holy Innocents' window.
The scene from which the stamp was produced was taken from a coastal ledge just west of Great Head, as shown in the March 2013 photograph below.*3
Great Head
Louisa and Herbert Satterlee's daughter, Eleanor, donated the Great Head and Sand Beach estate to Acadia National Park in 1949. A memorial, attesting to this, is at the top of the parking lot steps to Sand Beach.*4
Postscript: Tiffany stained glass windows can be seen on Mount Desert Island in Bar Harbor's St. Saviour's Church (10 windows) and Hulls Cove's Church of Our Father (1 window).

1 Regarding the Morgan purchase, see my February 5, 2013 blog post "Great Head, Sand Beach and J. P. Morgan."

2 It was artists from the Hudson River School, like Frederic Church and Thomas Cole, whose landscapes of Mount Desert Island in the mid 1800s inspired influential people to visit, reside and ultimately establish Acadia National Park.
3 GPS location from which the Great Head scene was taken: N44° 19.616'  W068° 10.514'

4 GPS location of memorial at Sand Beach steps: N44° 19.765'  W068° 11.028'