I was thinking it might be fun to try a new discussion thread each week. To get the ball rolling I was digging through the Almanack archive and came across this post from 2013 titled “Where Exactly is the North Country?”, written by Herb Hallas.
In his essay, Hallas traces the origin of the term North Country back to “the author, Irving Bacheller, when his novel, Eben Holden: A Tale of the North Country, became a literary sensation in 1900. Bacheller was born in Pierrepont, St. Lawrence County, NY in 1859 and graduated from St. Lawrence University in 1882. Two years later, he founded the first U.S. newspaper syndicate and introduced the writing of Stephen Crane, Rudyard Kipling, Arthur Conan Doyle and Joseph Conrad to American readers. Bacheller retired from newspaper work in 1900 to concentrate on writing novels. Eben Holden: A Tale of the North Country was his fourth novel and it became a runaway best seller.”
While Bacheller’s “North Country” referred to St. Lawrence County, Hallas cites five varying versions of what counties and places make up the North Country.
What are your thoughts? What comes to mind for you when hearing “North Country”? Does the North Country have a distinct identity apart from the Adirondacks or are the two forever linked together?
Image from NYS Empire State Development