Bald Rock

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The above exposed ledge, located in Frenchman Bay, lies just north of the Porcupine Islands and east of the Bluffs on Route 3 which happen to offer a good view of the rock as you pass by in your car. Sailing in front of it is the four masted schooner Margaret Todd. Bald Rock was given to the BHVIA by Mrs. Isabel Gurnee Montant on May 8th 1919. The previous owner was Lucilius A. Emery who purchased it in 1882. Mr. Augustus Gurnee, Isabel’s father, was one of the original incorporators of the Bar Harbor Village Improvement Association and he left 5000.00 for the VIA to maintain the How Memorial in Woodbury Park. Other donations included 25,000 to the hospital, 10,000 to the Town for a college scholarship and 10,000 to the YWCA. The Gurnee family also financed the building of the Gurnee Trail which ran from town along Route 3 atop the Bluffs toward Hulls Cove. Construction started in 1925, however, the trail was abandoned in 1960 by Acadia National Park as the highway infringed on parts of the path by this time making it impassable. Isabel’s grandfather, Walter Gurnee was mayor of Chicago from 1851 to 1853. He was an entrepreneur who worked as a land agent for the railroad. The Augustus Gurnee estate in Bar Harbor was called “Beau Desert” and was located beside what is now the College of the Atlantic.

DC 2016