Sweet Point - Butterfield Lake
Theresa, New York
Near the Thousand Islands

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History of Muskalonge Point (Sweet Point) on Butterfield Lake

          When the warranty deed was purchased for this property in 1861, Abraham Lincoln was sworn in as the 16th President of the United States, the American Civil War begins with the bombardment of Fort Sumter, South Carolina, and Nevada is organized as a United States territory. This point is two acres in size and sits on the inlet end of Butterfield Lake. Butterfield Lake’s physical features are: area – 493 acres, length – 4 miles, maximum depth – 49 feet (most of the lake is under 20 feet), maximum width – 0.6 mile, and elevation – 276 feet. Muskalonge Point got its name from muskellunge, which refers to a large fish of the pike family. Common fish in the lake are: walleye, pike, bass, perch, sunfish, bluegill, and bullhead. The history of ownership of Muskalonge Point, now referred to as Sweet Point, has only gone through six families since the Avery’s purchase in 1861.


          Prior to 1931 this rustic retreat was known as Oak Lodge. On January 22, 1931 the Sweet family became the fifth owner of Muskalonge Point. People began to refer to Muskalonge Point as Sweet Point bearing their last name. Research completed by the Sweet family indicates that the cottage was constructed in 1900. By 1910, fisherman and other visitors to Redwood were mailing postcards showing a large, pleasant looking camp called Oak Lodge. It is not certain if the structure was originally built as a lodge for fisherman or for a private camp, however when the Sweet’s bought the place all of the upstairs bedrooms had numbers on the doors indicating that it had once been operated as a small hotel for campers and fisherman.


          The cottage is a two story structure with its’ foundation and fireplace made of Potsdam sandstone (used for making Redwood glass). The interior is constructed entirely of wood. A series of glass globes filled with liquid hang on the walls in various strategic locations. These were to be thrown onto a fire should one ever erupt inside the premises. Prior to 1940, the cottage was lit entirely by kerosene lamps, which hang on the walls to this day. Electricity was outfitted via utility poles in 1944 and 2012.


          Just as was the case with most of the older cottages on Butterfield Lake, there was once an icehouse there built in two tiers. Crews would go around and cut ice out of the lake every winter. They would skid the ice up out of the lake, across the pine needles and then into the icehouse where it was layered with sawdust and would last up to two years. An outhouse was built in 1936 and is still there and in use today for emergencies. Modern indoor plumbing was equipped in 1944 and 2012.


          The Sweet family owned the cottage for 79 years. Families have celebrated many happy occasions at Sweet Point. As the newest owners of this historic cottage, our hope is that many more families can continue to make their own memories.


          With that in mind, our goal is to maintain the nostalgia of the premises so we ask that you please be careful and kind.
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