Remembering the Staff

The Other Boxwells, 1924-1954

As we do every year, when summer camp begins, we take a moment out each week to remember former camp staffs–the ones who make the program possible. Without the summer camp staff, there would be no summer camp program.

In 1924, Camp Boxwell opened for its fourth summer, still at the small 4 acre farm in Linton, TN. William Anderson, the Council Executive, served as Camp Director. To the best of our research, it was approximately this year that Anderson instituted his “Training School” approach to summer camp, utilizing a scout-led council, where the scouts made the rules to govern camp.  Camp opened on June 16th. Raymond Hurt was the Swimming and Activities Director and of course Walter Whittaker was the head cook. All other staff were adult volunteers. There were no staff photos.

In 1934, Camp Boxwell was in its 5th year at the Narrows of the Harpeth location. Camp was back up to about six weeks this summer, running from June 18 to July 27. Anderson was again out at camp and Talmadge Miller served as the waterfront director. Walter Whittaker was, of course, the head cook and other volunteer adults ran the rest of “Scout School.” Rev. A. C. Adamz was among these adults. Future Camp Director James Gribble was among the eight Eagle Scouts who helped run the camp.

10 years later, in 1944, the United States was in its third full year of World War II. Anderson was out at camp, as always. James Gribble were involved in the war effort and Miller, now Assistant Council Executive, was not at camp.  Walter Whittaker was now completing his 23rd summer as camp cook. Camp ran from Monday, June 19 to Monday, August 28.

By 1954, Ward E. Akers was Council Executive and Boxwell had moved to Rock Island. The Council had already purchased property near what would be Old Hickory Lake. By July of 1954, the Corps of Engineers produced a map of where Old Hickory Lake would rise to, allowing planning for a new camp to begin in earnest.  At Rock Island,  Professional Scouters Gene Tolley and Richard Parker were Camp Directors and the camp was run primarily by youth staff. Among the familiar names working the 1954 staff were John Parish, Barry Goad, and Bob Alley.

The only staff photo we have is of the 1954 Rock Island Staff, collection of Bob Alley.

Rock Island Staff, 1954

The Rock Island Boxwell Staff, 1954. Collection of Bob Alley

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