From the Archives, February 25, 2018

“The Bread Cure” by Mike Brown

I believe this took place in 1985 at Camp Parnell. Sean C. Gallager was the victim of a joke he kept making worse and worse. Sean C. worked in the commissary/kitchen off and on that summer, was a world champion Ping-Pong player, played a mean French horn(the trombone/French horn duet with Rob Prytula at Camp Craig is remembered lovingly by male deer all over the reservation) , and he spoke with a lisp.

At one time he was walking through the activity yard during the poisonous plants demonstration by the instructor. Poison ivy was the subject, and the counselor had an example for showing his group. Sean C. spied the sample and insisted that this was not poison ivy, but a simple creeping ivy. When the counselor disagreed Sean C. took the sample and rubbed it on his arms, showed his arms to the group, said “SEE!!”, and walked off to be caught by Jerry Barnett for mulch duty.

The day must have been hot and he must have used his arms on his face and brow to remove sweat a few times during his labors. When the red itchy patches began to appear he made the trek up the hill toward the health lodge. The con yard site was on the way and Matthew “Peanut” Bailey was the director at the time. He was seen by Sean C. and asked what the red itchy skin was. Peanut answered immediately that it was syphilis, and the at Sean C. had best get some bread on it to draw out the poison. Sean C., being no dummy, still headed up to the health lodge to get expert medical attention from the Ft Campbell medic Steve.

Steve took a look at the situation and immediately pronounced the verdict for the medical situation- An acute case of Poison Ivy.

Sean C. immediately informed Steve that he was wrong because he had been seen by the Great and Mystical Matthew Bailey, who had declared the rash to be none other that poison syphilis. Steve, aware that there could very well be other explanations, carefully asked whether Matthew had recommended a cure. Upon hearing it he agreed that white bread was probably the best way to draw the poison out and ease the itching flesh. He also recommended changing the bread every half-hour.

Sean C. dutifully went to the kitchen and withdrew his prescription of two loaves of Bunny Bread. He sat on the back steps of the loading dock and placed slices along his arms and then held two pieces in place on his face. He explained to all scouts and scoutmasters that he had a bad case of syphilis and was taking the bread cure for relief. After four loaves, I believe that Jerry Barnett finally ordered him to the health lodge for his calamine lotion.

Jerry later asked Peanut why he had told Sean C. it was poison syphilis. The answer that still reverberates in the annals of Craig/Parnell history was: “It seemed like the thing to say.”

Announcements! Announcements! Announcements!

The Anecdotes Project
March 2018
You may have noticed that the VirtualBoxwell posts this month have all been stories by staff members. This was deliberate. I want you to start thinking about YOUR camp stories.
Next week, on March 1, I will be sending out a Camp Anecdotes Questionnaire to former staff members. I will be asking about your favorite camp stories as well what made camp meaningful for you and your opinions/recollections of the various leaders you worked for. This questionnaire is in part for VirtualBoxwell, but it is also one of the last pieces of research for a project celebrating the centennial of Boxwell for 2021.
Thus, I need as much participation as I can get.
I won’t lie (a Scout is Trustworthy!): the questionnaire is going to take you a little bit of time. It is not multiple choice, but long form answers. But let’s be honest, none of us–NONE OF US–could talk about camp stories or the people we worked with or work for with a multiple choice form. All of us as staff members were just… too unique. 🙂
I want to thank you all in advance for participating and encourage you to start thinking. The Boxwell Staff Anecdotes Project is about to begin!
Grady Eades webmaster

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays from VirtualBoxwell!

To celebrate, we give you the photo you thought you might exist, but were never quite sure about: Tom Willhite as Santa Claus.  We don’t know who the gentlemen is on his knee, but that is Tom Willhite dressed in season appropriate attire for a Council Christmas Party in the 1980s.

Your holiday is now complete.  You’re welcome.  Have a great holiday and we’ll see you in 2018.


Tom Willhite as Santa Claus as a Council Christmas party

From the Archives, December 24, 2017

1999 Reunion Campfire

This is an admittedly bad photo. It is grainy and demonstrates the limits of technology in the late 1990s. Digital photography was in its infancy, so low light photos often looked this. Sorry.

That said, this photo is part of our recent nostalgic trip through Staff Reunions. For the last two weeks, we’ve looked at photos from the 2009 reunion. This week we jump back 10 years to the 1999 reunion. You can of course see all those photos on our Flickr account.

The photo here is of the 1999 Reunion Campfire at Camp Stahlman. You’ll note that the cross tie stage is still here. It would burn down in the not-too-distant future. On the stage is none other than Stahlman legend Web Webster. Web had served the meal earlier in the day and stuck around to MC the campfire.


Web Webster at 1999 Reunion campfire, Camp Stahlman Friday Night Campfire Area

Adkins’ Retirement

Today is the last day for Carl Adkins to serve in the position of Reservation Director.  He is officially retiring.  A party is planned to give him a proper send off.

We at VirtualBoxwell would like to say thank you and good luck to Carl as he begins the next phase of his life.  Serving from 2004 to 2017 makes Carl the second longest running Reservation Director and that is quite feat.

Congratulations Carl from all of us here at VirtualBoxwell!

Carl Adkins

2007 Staff ID photo of Reservation Director Carl Adkins. Photo by Carl Head.