One of the most important people at the early Boxwells was the camp cook, Walter Whittaker. Walter worked at both the Linton Boxwell as well as the Narrows of the Harpeth Boxwell. Actually, his real job was at Vanderbilt University, where during the winters he cooked for a Vanderbilt fraternity house. It is through Vanderbilt that William Anderson, head of Vanderbilt’s Track team and Executive of the Nashville Council, discovered him.
At Boxwell, Whittaker was know for his amazing rolls–something that is almost always written about him. But that’s not all he did. According to Boys Will Be Men, Whittaker “also doubled as music instructor, teaching spirituals and campfire songs” (51). Indeed, the story goes that Whittaker was SO good a cook that older Scouts often played a joke on new Scouts. When Whittaker left on Saturdays to go home for the weekend, the older boys told the younger that Whittaker and Anderson had had a falling out and Whittaker would not be returning. The younger boys were reported devastated by the news! (Boys Will Be Men, 52).
Of course, Whittaker didn’t just cook; he played horseshoes! Shown on the OA film “A Day at Camp Boxwell” and in the council newsletter The Bugle, Whittaker often competed with the boys… when he wasn’t making his famous rolls! Shown here is Walter Whittaker from The Bugle from October 1938.