Earl Young - His Life and Legacy

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Charlevoix Courier, December 4, 1974

The Weathervane Inn
Young Offers Another Chapter

EDITOR'S NOTE: Earl A. Young, Charlevoix realtor, is known around the world for his contributions to Charlevoix. This week he is offering another chapter from his book he is about to publish concerning his involvement in Charlevoix during the last 70 years.

With Christmas just around the corner, Mr. Young thought this chapter on the Weathervane Inn would be appropriate.

This is the second time any portion of the books has appeared in print. Last July, the Courier printed his introduction on Charlevoix.


When finishing details at Weathervane Inn in June, 1954, we moved a 15 year old long-needled pine halfway up the sloping bank of the river to the channel bank not far from our office door.

The tree looked nice just coming even with the top of the bridge railing.

Everyone interested at all expressed doubt that a tree that size moved could possibly live. We were very careful to plant the tree the same way to the weather it had been before.

We sliced up a bag of raw potatoes to put around the roots with a great deal of earth from its former location; we watched and kept it well watered.

I was confident it was going to live.

Then in late summer one , side of the tree started to turn brown. People who had been watching said, "Earl, your tree is dying," and I always answered, "the tree can't die, I just won't let it die, it just has to live."

All summer I paid special attention to the tree and before the end of October the rusty brown needles began to be replaced by new growth.

The next spring there was welcoming evidence of new needles and a few white shining pine cones started to appear.

For 16 years we watched over it until instead of being fifteen feet high, it was thirty feet high and a very definite spot of beauty at the end of the bridge near the Inn, with the background of stone work.

This unusually lovely picture was taken by friend Forrest Fowler, early one morning in March when there was an extremely heavy frost.

Another summer of enjoyable beauty and then in the storm of Ncvember 22, 1970 - a storm such as we have never seen before with waves coming in all the way from Lake Michigan washing the bank so far that the water was lapping the basement walls of the Inn and threatening to undermine the north abutment to the bridge - the eddy formed by the waves at this point tore away all of the bank and toppled our pine tree into the surging water.

For sixteen years our lively pine tree was a friend of great beauty and understanding and is now just a memory.