Happy Boxwell Day!


On July 5, 1921 the VERY FIRST Boxwell opened in Linton, TN.

A truck picked up Scouts going to camp at the intersection of the Belle Meade and Harding Road at 10am and 4:30pm.  Camp only ran for about three weeks at the time and cost less than $6 a week!

We are hoping to start a new tradition, not just here at VirtualBoxwell, but across Middle Tennessee Council by celebrating BOXWELL DAY–a day commemorating the opening of the first Boxwell.

Share this message far and wide.  If you use social media, share the post.  If you are looking on the website, share the link.  Spread the word so that everyone knows this is a new Middle Tennessee Council holiday!

Thank you to all the professionals, volunteers and staff members who have worked for 100 summers to keep Boxwell alive and flourishing!

Boxwell Day, 2020

From the Archives, May 26, 2024

Boxwell Greats: Lallie Richter

Camp Boxwell at Linton had its fair share of fascinating characters, including Coach William Anderson and Walter Whittaker. But no conversation about the first Boxwell would be complete without looking at the staff’s local basketball star, Lallie Richter.

Richter was on on the Linton staff most summers from 1922 to 1930 as one of the few paid staff. He served as Waterfront Director, Assistant Waterfront Director, and even Athletic Director. He was visible presence at camp. He refereed boxing matches between the boys. He pitched horseshoes with Coach Anderson. He organized tournaments between baseball teams of Scouts and often local boys. He taught non-swimmers how to swim. Indeed, as the _Banner_ reported on Juy 18, 1927, “Every member of the swimming class last week under the direction of Lallie Richter has learned to swim. This is the second week that every member of the class was able to swim at the end of the week.”

Born in 1904, Lallie and his younger brother Boos (yes, that was his actual name: Winston Boos Richter) left a German community in Illinois for Nashville during World War I. The boys found the tutelage of C. W. Abele (first Camp Director at Linton in 1921) at YMCA and it was here they seemed to have been introduced to basketball. Lallie attended Hume-Fogg high school and played on championship teams in 1921, 1922, and 1923. He would continue to referee high school basketball from 1924 through to the mid-1940s. He also managed the Burk & Co. baseball team. Burk & Co was a department store and Richter worked in the sporting goods department from 1925 to the mid-1940s, when he switched over to Genesco and worked with the company’s Gallatin office until his death in 1964.

Richter was probably best known as a player-coach for the Burk Terrors. After attending Vanderbilt briefly after high school (where he undoubtedly made the acquaintance of one William J. Anderson), Richter began playing for the newly formed Terrors in 1926. By 1931, he was coaching the team. He continued to do so until about 1946. This was a private company team and was the form “professional” basketball took in the days before the NBA was formed. Thus, coaching a team like the Terrors made Richter something of a local celebrity!

As for Boxwell, Richter was clearly a force to be reckoned with. In addition to the details above, Richter brought the buddy system to the Boxwell waterfront in 1928. He and his brother Boos also utilized a “spanking machine” for scouts exiting the waterfront: a gauntlet of sorts for scouts to “spank” late swimmers exiting the water. (Boos, as a sidenote, would go on to become the superintendent of the Tennessee Orphan Home in Spring Hill.)

Lallie Richter married Martha Elizabeth Smith in 1930 at the age of 24. This marriage and the move to the Narrows explained why Richter did not continue as Boxwell’s waterfront director beyond the 1930 season. The couple had two sons and a daughter. Richter died in 1964 at age 60 of cancer. But Richter’s time at Boxwell makes him one of the great staff members of the past 100 years. Richter is shown here in 1931, just after he finished his run at Camp Boxwell.

Photo from _Nashville Banner_, January 1, 1931, pg. 21.

Lallie Richter

Lallie Richter from the _Nashville Banner_, January 1, 1931 pg 21.

Boxwell History Book

For the Good of the Program: A Century of Middle Tennessee Scouting at Boxwell, 1921-2021

Looking for a gift to buy your favorite Scouter for Christmas? Think about the history of Boxwell! Get a paperback copy from Amazon (and most other book retailers) right now. If you search Amazon, search “Grady Eades” to most easily find the book.

OR, go for the super simple route and just use this link: https://www.amazon.com/Good-Program-Century-Tennessee-Scouting/dp/1734085053/ref=sr_1_1

For the Good of the Program

Website Update

Photo information

From the very beginning of the VirtualBoxwell blog, we have made an effort to note critical information about the photos we use. This included a “title” of the photo, who the photo belonged to, dimensions, and year. It is essential to the work that we do that this information be noted.

However, WordPress has updated to the point where this information is no longer publicly available. Previously, you could click on a photo and get the critical information we were providing. This is no longer possible.

So, going forward, we will provide this information as part of posting. If there is any photo in the Boxwell News blog that you would like to know the background on, please let us know. We will happily provide this information as we never intended it to not be public.

Fall Book Tour, 2022

Cookeville Presentation, October 10

Cookeville, tonight’s the night. I will be giving my presentation on the History of Boxwell at 7pm this evening at Vol State’s Cookeville Higher Education Campus (CHEC) at 1000 Neal Street in Room 224. I’ll be giving the talk and selling and signing books.

This is a great opportunity to see those of you a little outside the immediate Nashville Area. I’ll hope you’ll come out!

When: Monday, October 10, 2022
Time: 7 PM
Where: Vol State’s Cookeville Campus
1000 Neal Street, Room #224 Neal Street, Room #224

October 10, 2022, 7PM, Vol State Cookeville Campus, 1000 Neal Street, Room #224