I wonder if Gus (H. Cushman Anthony) ever imagined that 36 years after he wrote the very first edition of the “Belltower” (Fall of 1981) that it would still be going strong! Knowing Gus the way I did, I know that he thought with all his heart that it would be flourishing. I’m sure he surmised that with all the ‘Scouts – now men’ that he had known, some of them would ‘take the reins’ and continue operating and growing the Yawgoog Alumni Association and writing the “Belltower”. After all, Gus was their teacher, their mentor, their friend and everyone loved him.
It occurred to me that you ‘old timers’ and even you ‘newbies’ would like to see the very first edition of the Belltower, so I am reprinting Gus’s first newsletter, right now, in this Spring 2017 edition. Enjoy!!
Now, let’s all travel back in time and enjoy the next 6 pages of memories……………..
By: Judy Ferrante
YAWGOOG SCOUT RESERVATION
Rockville, Rl 02873
YAWGOOG ALUMNI NEWS
Yawgoog Scout Reservation
Narragansett Council, BSA
Concluding Yawgoog’s 66th Season
175 Broad Street, Providence, RI 02903
Vol.1, No. 1, Fall of 1981
ALUMNI REUNION WELL ATTENDED
Over 300 of Yawgoog’s Old Timers, Knights, veteran campers and friends drove through the T. Dawson Brown Gate; parked in the Tim O’Neil Field; ate in the Donald North Court; gathered in the J. Harold Williams Amphitheatre and remi
nisced all around the Bucklin Memorial. They hiked over Three Point, Medicine Bow
and Sandy Beach and had a fine day.
There were many warm greetings, a friendly “Thank You” for some old Good Turn, a tear of rememberance, and a lot of “Do you remember when?” or “Where is so-and-so these days?” On Saturday, August 22, Yawgoog Scout Reservation saw more joy, more tears, more laughs, more inspiration, more genuine friendship
and more love than it has seen since our last reunion in 1959. It is the Spirit of Yawgoog, and it still lives!
WHO WAS THERE?
Enclosed is a list of those who attended as best we could get it. It does not include many who returned primarily for the Knights Initiation nor does it include those who were “in Camp” for the week, nor the wives of the alumni or the many friendly associates.
WHO WANTED TO COME BUT COULDN’T!
Many of you sent in “Sorry, I can’t make it” cards and we missed you.
Don’t. give up; another year is coming. We are listing you because we want everyone to know you cared enough to answer. We tried to get addresses for the lists of names that we had, namely former staff men. We ran news stories, radio plugs, and paid ads, but we still had trouble getting the names with addresses of the thousands who proudly call themselves Yawgoog Alumni. No records are kept. of those wonderful volunteer leaders who have led their troops in camp or those long-term campers who spent weeks and weeks in “Vets’” Camp. We still need your help in sending us names
YAWGOOG IS AS BEAUTIFUL AS YOU REMEMBER IT
Albert E. Mink, a thirty-three year veteran, served as Reservation Director this past summer. He had a great staff and a very rewarding season. Al Gunther is serving his twenty-third season as Camp Ranger and many of the Alumni commented on how well the camp looked.
OUR REUNION PROGRAM WAS VARIED
Some arrived by 1 p.m. and after registering in with Bill Sandford’s “Over the Hill Gang” viewed the displays of Yawgoog’s early · days and then foot to.ured the camp with young staff members as · guides. The chicken barbeque was a real success thanks to George Egan and Larry Jette, our bakemaster.
Then to the Williams Amphitheatre for this season’s final Saturday Night Show. (They haven’t improved any!) Maybe next .year we can resurrect some of the old timers and their memorable acts. Wouldn’t that be fun!
Following the Show came the annual initiation of the Knights of Yawgoog. This was done with great taste by Al Mink and Company on the stage rather than down in the woods. Our ladies saw it for the first time in history. (ERA in BSA)
Then came the “Old Timers’ Remember When Party” with “Gus” as MC. We heard from some of the campers of the Teens,. TWenties and Thirties. We had some more laughs from the “old boys” who had camped in that little circle of tents.
A word from Council President Stan Turco, Scout Executive Vince Borrelli and
Camp Committee Chairman Dr. Mel Hoffman. The theme of so many short remarks really said, “Yawgoog gave me so much; I want to give a little back.”
The final ceremony with two camp trumpeters, one east of the amphitheatre and one west, played in close harmony the Boy Scout Hymn, “On My Honor.” Those who could hold back the tears joined in the singing led by the Camp Key Staff.
Re-dedication of us· all to our Scout Oath, and a fitting benediction concluded
this happy gathering.
Then back up to the Bucklin archway for doughnuts, cheese and coffee with a last chance to have a word with your old camp buddies before we started on our homeward trip.
YOU CAN HELP YAWGOOG IN FOUR SPECIFIC WAYS
Memorabilia- Old photos, snapshots, old samples of camp currancy, physical cards, letterhead, postcards, maps, brochures, etc. Yes, we really need some missing
CAMP REPORTS. We cannot find any copy of the following years: 1916 thru 1941, 1945, 1952, 19.54 and 1955.
Manpower - No matter where you live there is Scouting. You can volunteer to help sell troops on how to get more Scouts to camp; help troops raise money for camperships; help Al Gunther (Camp Ranger) in maintenance jobs like making tent floors, painting boats, canoes, etc; serve on troop and district committees to get troops to camp.
Money - To date, we have received two generous gifts to help Yawgoog. Our present camp fee ($72 per week) is a lot of money and yet it is far less expensive than most camps. What we really hope we can do is to establish a “Yawgoog Alumni Fund” from which we will use only the interest for the maintenance and operation of camp. Yawgoog receives NO funds at all from the United Way, so we make ends meet from the Rhode Island Boy Scouts endowment, the boys’ fees and a few special funds. We really don’t need camperships as they generally are cared for by the boy’s own troop. We would welcome Memorial Gifts in any amount. · These gifts will add to the “Yawgoog Alumni Fund” and in this way your gift will support Yawgoog as long as Yawgoog exists. Our best financial thinking is to keep the boys’ fees down by having more invested funds used to maintain the present facilities.
Membership - If we are to have an ongoing Alumni Association, we must have ember ship fees for printing, postage and some secretarial help. We now have a mailing of about 750 names with addresses and would like more. We are using bulk mailing to keep the costs down. Those who sent in their money for the chicken barbeque have paid the expenses so far. We are thinking of a sliding scale of membership fees; the Bronze CY Alumni member would be $10 per year, the Gold CY Alumni would be $25 per year and the Silver CY Alumni would be $50 per year. Anything above that would be most welcome. Each membership will be acknowledged with a special CY Alumni card. The enclosed application for membership is for your use.
NEWS AND VIEWS FROM MANY OF YOUSE
Russ Larkin, CY ’19, sent us a beautiful enlargement of the 1919 Camp Staff, all eight of them. See page 5 of your “Yawgoog Story” by Chief. (Incidentally, everyone who attended the Reunion received a FREE copy of the printing of this historic document. They still are available at $2.00 each.)
Chet Worthington, CY ’16, still serves on the Council Advisory Committee of the Executive Board and attended the Reunion with Diana.
Paul Slade, CY ’16, our famous Slade’s Bridge engineer and builder, was with us in full glory.
Dan O’Grady, CY ’24, of athletic fame and ex-Scoutmaster of Troop 27 Provi-dence (the “campingest” troop), had about six of his old boys there.
Frank Toste, CY ’60, (Rev. to you guys), was able to breeze in late in the evening and we only wish we had the time for him to put on “The Operation” or his rendition of “You Only Hurt the One You Love.” (Bang!)
Steve Charlton, CY’61, came all the way down from Canada and he looked as young as ever. (Incidentally, we had over fifty that came from out of state.)
Don Dewing, CY ’21, famous Scoutmaster for over fifty years of Troop 82 Providence and now Council Treasurer, was there again having spent two weeks with his troop at “Camp Dewing” on Church Rock beside the dam earlier this summer.
Bill Dwyer, CY ’40, famous for his service as an Outpost Guide in our famous camping Trails Program.
(Incidentally, Tom Whittingslow, Trails Guide Director in ’55, writes a long letter of praise about Yawgoog and its influence on him to enter professional Scouting in ’57. (He now serves as Deputy Regional Scout Executive in our Southeast Region.)
Ray (Squidgett) Horton, CY ’58, was in his old pep and enthusiasm.
Dave McKenzie, Poet Laureate of Narragansett Council, heard his famous poem “The Scoutmaster” read at the Knights’s Initiation Ceremony.
Don Fowler, CY ’65, Director of Yawgoog from 1969-71, was there to meet many of his old staff men. He is now with the Providence Chamber of Commerce and helps the BSA with their publicity.
Ben Latt, CY • 34, is now a top man in Washington with the Department of Health and Human Services.
Win Nagle, CY ’17, still blends his voice when it comes to singing as well as swinging his golf clubs.
Charlie Randall, CY ’21, with his wife came early and knew so many people from those founding days.
The Powers Bros., David and Don, CY ’50 , were really renewing old friendships.
The Francis Bros., Phil and Paul CY ’5 , were also remembering when with all their buddies.
Murray Massover, CY ’60, has grown taller and his hair is redder; he still has a
good sales pitch. (?”)
Winthrop Richardson, CY ’24, EB to some of us, had a great time meeting some really
“Gus” Anthony, CY ’16, probably had as much fun and satisfaction as anyone there; he had this thing grow from an idea.
Charlie Lawton, CY ’52, teaches at Rhode Island College and was a prize address
finder on the Reunion Committee.
Artie Matteson, CY ’55, fifty pounds lighter, was also a real worker to make this reunion happen.
There were far too many happenings to print in this letter. We’ll save some for the next letter. In the meantime, God Bless …•. and Keep the Yawgoog Spirit.
OLD TIMERS REUNION
August 22, 1981
(Attendees noted with * -All others “wanted to come, but couldn’ t”)