This young man is none other than JJ Norman. I interviewed JJ on April 10, 2018 and we discussed JJ’s time at the modern Boxwell. Specifically, we spoke about his time on Shooting sports, in the Activity Yard, as AY Director, and as Program Director at Camp Craig. We also spoke about staff traditions and working for Carl Adkins. All of this was done sitting on the veranda of Camp Craig dining hall, per J. J.’s request.
But perhaps the most important thing we discussed was JJ’s experience on Boxwell staff and in Scouting as a gay man. To say this interview “got real” would be an understatement. It is probably the most heartfelt and sincere conversation I’ve recorded.
The interview was also over three and a half hours and needs to be transcribed.
My conversation with JJ is a great example of how Boxwell has been a haven, a safe place for so many. I want to tell that story.
This young woman is Rachel Paris. I interviewed Rachel last year on July 12. We discussed Rachel’s time on the CubWorld staff, how CubWorld programs worked (wildly different from Boy Scout programs!), her long family connections with Boxwell, and what it was like to be a woman in an organization that often prides itself on its male-ness. We had a great conversation and I learned more than I could have hoped!
This was a shorter interview, but still ran a solid hour and a half. To be fair, Rachel was still working.
Rachel’s interview is one I need transcribed. Her experience provides insight into how the world of Boy Scouting–Scouting–has changed; she helps give a complete story.
Today I introduce you to the legendary Jim Barr. I interviewed Jim on June 13, 2016. We discussed Jim’s time on Craig’s and Stahlman’s Waterfront, the Great Staff Walkout in 1976, the Staff Switch in 1979/1980, Tom Willhite, and, of course, Ernie Ragsdale. Ragsdale-Barr was as much an institution at Boxwell as was Willhite himself. And oh my goodness, the stories! Jim Barr is a story-teller!
Indeed, the interview ran almost three solid hours. There was still so much to talk about, I came back a month later for another two hours.
That’s five hours of Jim Barr stories and history on the record!
Jim’s interviews are ones I need transcribed. To describe Boxwell in the 1970s and 1980s without Barr and Ragsdale is like trying to discuss early U. S. History without Jefferson and Madison; it can’t be done.