Hello All,

We’re taking a small hiatus.  We’ll be back the first Sunday in June with regular postings.  Enjoy the nice weather and see you in two weeks with some more Boxwell history!

The VirtualBoxwell Team

From the News, March 11, 2018

Snipe Hunting at Linton, 1927

It is nice to know that the more things change, the more they stay the same. So, if you’ve ever wondered to yourself how far back snipe hunting goes, well, at least until 1927!

The article here is the second week of camp at the Linton Boxwell in 1927. The Nashville Banner ran the story from the camp scribe Thomas “Tommie” Anderson.  “Walter” in the first paragraph is Walter Whittaker, the camp cook.  Also, understand that the Linton Boxwell experience was closer to a modern camporee than it was to modern Boxwell Reservation.

As you can see, half the article is about introducing the new boys at camp to the camping experience. There were about 80 boys in camp that week, 60 of whom were Scouts who were staying for a second week. It was the 20 newbies who were being hazed here. Still, as the rest of the article intimates, it was all in good fun and everyone came together for the group sporting events in the afternoon. Still, as different as Linton seems from Old Hickory, it is nice to see that snipe hunting is a time honored Scouting tradition!

“Snipe Hunt Thrills Camp Boxwell Scouts,” Nashville Banner, June 30, 1927, pg. 7

Snipe Hunting

“Snipe Hunt Thrills Camp Boxwell Scouts,” Nashville Banner, June 30, 1927, pg. 7

From the Archives, February 28, 2018

Camp Anedotes: The Spam Run
By Eric Cole

[This story is edited from a 1998 recording.]

Either the first or second week, staff night out [1989]. Now, you know, I started late at camp, so that first year, I was 17, so that was the only year that I just went out on Tuesday nights or couldn’t drive myself. And so, it was the first time I’d ever gone out. Well, we did a Spam hunt.

Now, I don’t think another one’s ever been since then. At least, not that I’ve known about. I guess you know how it goes, but in case you don’t, I’ll tell you.

Of course, I’m from Gallatin, which is right across the river, so I was pretty much in my home town, you know, at camp. Well, we’d gone into Gallatin on our way to Rivergate. Now, this was before the by-pass was built, of course, so you had to go down, and cut through and kind of come out on the main road there. You went down pass the Wal-Mart and the Rivergate and that stuff. Well, not the Rivergate, but Kroger and all that stuff.

Well, we did a Spam hunt in Kroger. Now what we did was, we’re all, you know, this big pile of people, we’re all come in. Of course, people notice a bunch of teenage guys comin’ in, first off. And, so we start, far right side of the store. And we just walkin’ through. Kind of like creepin’ through the store. And we’re going “Spam, spam, spam.” And we just walk like that, just walk like that, all through the store, up and down each aisle. And the more we walked, the louder we get. You know, “spam. Spam. SPAM. SPAM.” You know, we’d just keep going, keep going, until we finally find the Spam. Then, we find the Spam, it was like “Yeah, we found the Spam. Spam, yeah! Spam! SPAM! SPAM! SPAM!” Okay? So, big great thing.

‘Course by this time, you know, by the time we’d got to the Spam, there’s people all over the store going “What the heck? What is going on?” You know, some people laughed, some people kind of scared. You know, maybe we were a gang or something.

So, we get the Spam and we all go rushing up to the cash register, you know. Just a can of spam. So, you get there, you’re finally in line. And they ring it up. Now, you know, I don’t talk this way or whatever, but I’ll use the words that were used, but I didn’t say it. But, they get to the cash register and they ring it up and they tell ’em how much it is. And then all, everybody looks at each other like “Too Damn Much! Too Damn Much!” And then they go runnin’ out of the, just leave the Spam can there, and go runnin’ out, take off.

So, anyway, it was really funny. But, you know, halfway through the chanting of “Spam” I was like “I can’t do this with these guys. I said I’m going go see somebody I know in here.” You know, “Just in case we get in trouble, I don’t want to get in trouble with them, you know.” Cause it’s my home town. SO, I had liked pulled off the side and actually seen somebody I knew. And, so the whole time after the found the Spam and went to the cash register, I wasn’t with them. SO, I kind of, like, met them outside. That was really funny. Funny thing to do.

From the News, March 22, 2017

Boys Will Be Men

If you are familiar with the Council’s history at all, you know that the only history book on Middle Tennessee Council is 1983’s Boys Will Be Men by Wilbur F. Creighton, Jr. and Leland Johnson.  Long since out of print, you can still find copies of it floating around here and then.  But at the time, you could buy a copy at the Jet Potter Center, as mentioned in this very favorable review of the book from 1984.

Hugh Walker, “Familiar Faces Fill Scouting’s Story,” The Tennessean, January 22, 1984, pg. F5.

Boys Will be Men

A review of Creighton and Johnson’s history of Middle Tennessee Council

From the News, May 31, 2017

Tapping Out Walter, 1947
With the start of camp right around the corner, this will be the last From the News posting for awhile. We hope you’ve enjoyed the series.
This week’s post is about an OA tap-out at Boxwell in 1947. Wa-Hi-Nasa was still in its first decade at this point and tap-out ceremonies at Boxwell were common, as were day long ordeals in the middle of camp.
This article though is important though not just because it refers to an OA ceremony, but because it inducts 65 year old camp cook Walter Whitaker, who had been working at Boxwell almost since its beginning in 1921. Indeed, the facts that Whitaker is given the honor AND is referred to by his whole name in the article (instead of just “Walter”) in a time when segregation is still going strong in Tennessee and in the Boy Scouts are pretty important moments in their own way.
“Scout Society Adds 12 to Rolls,” The Tennessean, July 29, 1947, pg. 13.
Walter Whitaker OA

OA ceremonies at the Narrows Boxwell