Lake Alice was named for deceased daughter of Medina industrialist

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 10 August 2013 at 12:00 am

Photos by Tom Rivers – Alice Swett, daughter of Medina industrialist Albert L. Swett, was only 11 when she died. She is buried in the family plot at Boxwood Cemetery in Medina.

MEDINA – Albert L. Swett was one of the most successful entrepreneurs in Orleans County’s history. In 1898, he formed the A.L. Swett Electric Light and Power Company, which brought electricity to Medina.

He built another reservoir in Carlton to provide more power to Orleans County about a century ago.

Swett also ran a massive iron works company, “A.L. Swett Ironworks,” in Medina. A quick search under “A.L. Swett Ironworks” on Google showed a list of heavy-duty items, ranging from manhole covers and barn door hangers to iron ladles.

Medina Historian Todd Bensley and County Historian Bill Lattin led a tour of Boxwood Cemetery this afternoon. They stopped by the massive monument for Swett near the back of the original cemetery. (The burial grounds has expanded east.)

They said Swett was grief-stricken about the loss of his daughter, who was only 11 when she died. When Swett had a reservoir dug in Carlton as part of a power project at Waterport, he named the site in honor of his daughter. That’s why it’s called “Lake Alice.” I didn’t know that story until today.

Mr. Swett lived from 1850 to 1924. His daughter died in 1884.

Albert L. Swett has a massive monument at Boxwood Cemetery in Medina.