President Chester Arthur visits the Thousand Islands and Staples Island

By: Susan G. Mathis

Volume 18, Issue 7, July 2023

While President Chester A. Arthur often stayed at the Crossmon House Hotel and enjoyed fishing when he came to the Thousand Islands, I imagined that he visited the Staples Island entertainment pavilion, as it was the best in the area. In my latest story, A Summer at Thousand Island House, the President was instrumental in helping a child and resolving a terrible situation.

Born in Vermont to a Baptist preacher, Chester A. Arthur graduated from Union College, taught school, then became a lawyer in New York City. During the Civil War, he served as Quartermaster General of New York State, and in 1871, President Grant appointed him as Collector of the New York Port.

Chester A. Arthur was known to be honest, honorable, and faithful to his work. But in government, honesty often brings attacks by opponents, and Arthur received many. While Vice President under President Garfield, Arthur often stood against the President as well as his own party machine when he disagreed or went against his conscience. As a Republican reformer, he worked to reunify the nation after the Civil War.

Chester A. Arthur, President of the United States, Published 1882; Photograph by C.M. Bell, Wash., D.C. No. 8.- NOS 11/96. Library of Congress.

Chester A. Arthur looked like a President—dignified, handsome, tall, with huge side-whiskers, and was known as a champion of civil service reform. He became America’s twenty-first President, succeeding President James Garfield upon his assassination and served from 1881-1885. His wife, Ellen, had died before he took office, so his sister, Mary, served as the unofficial First Lady and cared for his two sons and a daughter, William, Chester, and Ellen.

In 1883, the Pendleton Act protected employees against removal from their jobs for political reasons. Arthur also signed the Tariff Act of 1883, lowering egregious tariff rates. His administration also enacted the first Federal immigration law excluding paupers, criminals, and lunatics.

Unfortunately, Arthur suffered from a fatal kidney disease and he died at the age of 56. But he lived large. He visited the Thousand Islands often, was an avid fisherman, and in 1883, took a fishing trip to Yellowstone National Park that convinced many to protect the park.

Susan G. Mathis' lastest book that takes place in the Thousand Islands. 

About A Summer at Thousand Island House, by Susan G Mathis

She came to work with the children, not fall in love.

Part nanny, part entertainer, Addison Bell has always had an enduring love for children. So what better way to spend her creative energy than to spend the summer nannying at the renowned Thousand Island House on Staples Island? As Addi thrives in her work, she attracts the attention of the recreation pavilion’s manager, Liam Donovan, as well as the handsome Navy Officer Lt. Worthington, a lighthouse inspector, hotel patron, and single father of mischievous little Jimmy.

But when Jimmy goes missing, Addi finds both her job and her reputation in danger. How can she calm the churning waters of Liam, Lt. Worthington, and the President, clear her name, and avoid becoming the scorn of the Thousand Islands community?

By Susan G. Mathis

We have met Susan G Mathis several times over the year, each time as we introduce her lastest book set in the Thousand Islands, her childhood stomping ground in upstate NY. Susan has been published more than twenty-five times in full-length novels, novellas, and non-fiction books. She has ten in her fiction line including, The Fabric of Hope, Christmas Charity, Katelyn’s Choice, Devyn’s Dilemma, Peyton’s Promise, Sara’s Surprise, Reagan’s Reward, Colleen’s Confession, Rachel’s Reunion, Mary’s Moment, and now A Summer at Thousand Island House. Her book awards include two Illumination Book Awards, three American Fiction Awards, two Indie Excellence Book Awards, and four Literary Titan Book Awards. Reagan’s Reward is a Selah Awards finalist. Susan makes her home in Colorado Springs and enjoys traveling around the world but returns each summer to enjoy the Thousand Islands. Visit for more.

Website|Author Central|Facebook|Twitter|Pinterest|Blog|Goodreads Instagram|Book Bub|

[Editor's Note: Susan G. Mathis gives us her latest well-loved book information, and also a her preceptoin of President Chester A. Arthur's visit to the Thousand Islands.]

Posted in: Volume 18, Issue 7, July 2023, Book review

Please click here if you are unable to post your comment.

Submit an Article

Do you have an article you would like to submit? Click here to participate.