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

From the News, May 24, 2017

“With the Scouts,” July 10, 1921

Throughout the 1920s and into the 1940s, the local newspapers ran sections specifically about Boy Scouts.  These went under various names, such as “With the Scouts,” as seen here, or “Boy Scout News” or something else.  The Tennessean gave a whole page for several years called “The Nashville Scouts’ Own Page.”  The news was similar: council news, yes, but predominantly Troop news.  After all, writing articles was part of what a Scribe did!

Here is an article from July 10, 1921.  The second part is some troop news (rather brief this week), but the first part is about Boxwell.  Indeed, this article is discussing what the very first week at the very first Boxwell was like…

“With the Scouts,” The Nashville Banner, July 10, 1921, pg. 14

Linton Boxwell

From the News, May 17, 2017

Boxwell is THE camp

We’ve mentioned before how “back in the day,” the Council had more than one Scout camp.  There was Camp Fisher in Manchester.  There was the African American camp.  There was a camp for Clarksville troops too.  There were also LOTS of one week encampments that various troops called “camp.”  And, of course, there was Boxwell.

In 1932, the Executive Committee committed to centralizing council camp operations, thus essentially making Boxwell THE Council camp.  Other camps would be recognized as council encampments, but the Council’s efforts would push toward the central camp.

“Boy Scout Camps,” The Tennessean, Sunday, April 10, 1932, pg. 17

Boy Scout Camps, 1932

From the News, May 10, 2017

C. M. Cooper Heads Negro Boy Scouts

Charles M. Cooper is probably a name you haven’t heard of before, but in 1943 he was appointed Field Executive of Nashville Council’s Negro Boy Scout Troops.  As you can see from the article, he had a strong background in Scouting and had been involved in the Council for some years.  As you can also see from the article, “Negro Scouting” is not a particularly large part of the Council with only nine active troops under Cooper’s supervision.

“C. M. Cooper Heads Negro Boy Scouts,” The Tennessean, June 27, 1943, pg. C-10.

Cooper Heads Negro Scouts

From the News, May 3, 2017

Narrows of the Harpeth Sold

What happened to the Narrows Boxwell?  The Rock Island Boxwell is still owned by the council, so what about the Narrows Boxwell?  The short answer: it was bought by the state in 1978.  Here’s the article.

“Harpeth Narrows Added to State Site,” The Tennessean, July 14, 1978, pgs. 1 and 10.

Narrows purchased

Article on the purchase of the Narrows of the Harpeth