Millions of nineteenth-century immigrants came from relatively peaceful native countries simply because America could offer more opportunity. Emanuel Maroun’s family was well-known in Tupper Lake in the twentieth century for their store, Maroun’s Market. His grandfather, Astanteen Maroun, arrived in the Adirondacks in the 1890s via Utica, where a number of Syro-Lebanese immigrants had settled as part of the peddling network, bringing linens and dry goods from New York City to geographically remote places up north. Villages like Tupper Lake were experiencing booming economic and population growth in the 1890s thanks to the availability of lumber.
Emanuel Maroun’s father, Said or Siede “Charlie” Maroun, grew up in a peaceful and stable Lebanon while his father peddled in upstate New York, but following his father’s path offered greater opportunities than sustenance farming in the mountains of Lebanon. Charlie Maroun arrived in 1909 at age fifteen and joined his father, walking to and from lumber camps in the Adirondacks with suitcases of dry goods to sell. Emanuel remembers his father selling to Italians, Polish, Russians, Swedes, and French Canadians in those camps before establishing a store in Tupper Lake in 1937. Both Charlie and Emanuel Maroun returned to Lebanon to find wives in the traditional manner.