Beginning roughly with Sir Leonard Tilley and Sir Charles Tupper, who purchased summer homes in St. Andrews in 1871, and extending through the first two decades of the 20th century, with such notables as Sir William Van Horne, Sir Thomas Shaughnessy, Sir James Dunn, Senator Robert MacKay, C. R. Hosmer and many more, St. Andrews became truly a hangout for the rich and famous. Though perhaps the most notable figures were connected with the railroad business, there were others as well: architects such as Edward Maxwell, painters such as George Innes and William Hope; Harvard professors and big city editors; millionaire baseball players and glamorous movie actresses. In the days before the automobile, many arrived by private rail car piled high with steamer trunks. They would stay at the Alqonquin for the entire summer--or rather, the families would, the husbands tended to be workaholics who only peeped in now and then to see how everyone was getting along. The summer people represented a different class from the locals. At the Algonquin and in their luxurious summer homes, they were accustomed to running water and electricity, of which the regular townspeople had neither. They had a private swimming beach at Katy's Cove; their own tennis and golf tournaments. The Saturday evening hops at the Algonquin were not for the locals, though they might stand on the verandah and listen to the music.
Although there was class division and no doubt class resentment, the summer people were a necessary evil, and not even evil. Many were nouveau riche wo at heart were decent and "regular folks." The summer people were also fairly philanthropic. Olive Hosmer, Marguerite Shaughnessy and Adaline Van Horne all took a philanthropic interest in local events and contributed to the local economy.
The summer people over the years were a substantial crowd of interesting and influential people. What follows is a partial list of some of the more colorful of them.