History: A short history of Fountain Point

About 1860, a French fur trader, Andre de Beloit, plying his trade near the Narrows of Carp Lake – later called Lake Leelanau – became convinced of the beauty and wealth of the area and purchased a tract of land. He decided to attempt a drilling for oil on the land. After a long struggle and close to complete failure, he struck a gusher of sparkling water at a depth of 900 feet. This was in 1867. The sparking water has been flowing ever since: Thus the name Fountain Point.

After de Beloit’s failure to strike oil, the land changed hands several times until in 1887 it was purchased by Mrs. Lydia Morrison of Cincinnati. By June 1889, The Fountain Point House was a reality and guests were arriving for the summer by steamboat and buggy. The main three-story building was the center of activity with additions housing a large dining room, kitchen and lounge. Mrs. Morrison’s daughter, Mrs. Florence M. Whitfield, managed Fountain Point until 1912 when Albert Meafoy, a relative and vaudeville actor, became owner.

By his death in 1934 all cottages were built and all had bathrooms. The resort was managed for the estate for two summers. In 1936, Victor A. Gebhardt, a guest since 1917, and grandfather of Susan, the present owner, bought the Point. It has remained in the family now for three generations.

In the 1990’s, a new beginning emerged. Several changes have taken place to ensure the future of Fountain Point. The hotel now houses a small breakfast room where continental breakfast is served. There is a large game room with pool table, ping pong and foosball. There are three sitting rooms with fireplaces, and a long veranda which wraps itself around the front of the hotel that faces the lake and awaits your arrival.

This historic landmark has been placed on the National Registry of Historic Places July 2003 and continues to be an atmosphere for family time together. Come experience an old-fashioned family vacation and make Fountain Point a part of your tradition. The fourth and fifth generation are waiting in the wings.