Known as the “Godfather”, the late Hal “Moose” McCarney (1926-2008) spent his life on the St. Lawrence and around the 1000 Islands. As a fourth-generation river-rat, Hal was heavily involved in various boating ventures, including as co-partner of the Gananoque Boat Lines, a tour operator with several vessels offering sightseeing and local history discovery cruises.
Hal was a serial entrepreneur, and a heavy investor and promoter of the 1000 Island region and the Town of Gananoque. His knowledge of the region—and its lore—was extensive and is captured beautifully in his historical fiction novel Chess with Violence: Rum-running in the 1000 Islands, which is about the region’s social history during the prohibition period.
He writes in his Acknowledgements “Although this is a work of fiction, I have tried to maintain both historical and geographical accuracy wherever possible.”