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Big Lake

 My grandfather, W. L. Ford, owned and operated the Big Lake resort referred to previouly. I'm unsure about the years, but know it was as early as the mid-to-late 1930s because my parents worked there during summers. I'm unsure when W. L. either sold or closed the operation -- probably in the late 1940s or early 1950s.  My family moved away in 1954, and I haven't been back since. I wonder if any part of the big old ''hotel'' still stands.  It was a fun place,
    as described , for a kid to visit. Says Bill Pogue

My dad, brother Frank, uncle Joe Bartkus and I spent two weeks every July camping at Big Lake in the 40s and early 50s. My dad's vacation time from Sears, Chicago. My mom spent
the time in Harrisburg with relatives. Joe and dad would stop on the way in at old Shawnee town for their houch. Still recall the wet weather ditch we crossed in Joe's old Model T. We all had to get out and reset the 2 x 6 planks coming and going. My dad was in heaven for those two weeks running trot lines for cats all night. Frank and I fished the shore all day for blue gill and crappie.that was dinner with a can of beans. Still can't believe we never got  
    snakebit by all the moccasins there. Still recall the hotel, dance hall, and juke box there playing the ''Fish Tale Boogie.'' Says Marty Pullam

My 4 siblings and I would wander all over that area. We learned a lot about trees,
 snakes, red mud, fishing etc. This is particularly strange since we were city kids from Chicago. We shoveled gravel, dug holes for posts, and used an outhouse. In the winter we pumped water and brought in wood and coal. As Mr. Dawson states the cypress trees were beautiful and if you were there when the lake was frozen the sounds were magnificent. It was so noisy at night with the hoot owls and insects and to this day cicadas will put me to sleep on a hot summer
day. The only bad thing I can think of was the humidity! Says Debbi Knox Hummel

Had many many good times there as a kid from late 60s till early 90s I remember the old hotel and the rental cabin. My parent's owned a cabin there.I knew that lake like the back of my hand Says Mark Knox

Big lake is a beautiful lake surrounded by lage cypress trees.In the 1940's and 50's it was called Big Lake resot, several cabins and a lage hotel, kept full duing the season. Boat rentals and a bait shop and grocery/cafe were also here. Now there ae just a fe cabins left and the hotel is gone, but the memories are still there. Says Jon L. Dawson


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