Cherokee Council History
The Cherokee Council was founded in 1923. Originally it was comprised of Alamance, Rockingham, Caswell, Stokes, and Orange counties. One of the Council’s longest continuously active troops is Troop 39, which has been headquartered in Burlington at the Macedonia Lutheran Church for the past seventy-five years. Cherokee Council’s first president was
R. S. Montgomery. He put a large emphasis on the summer program. Shortly after the Council was formed, the first Scout Camp was created near Wentworth in southern Rockingham County. In 1936, the dining hall was completed as part of the work relief project under the guidance of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. The Works Progress Administrative (W.P.A.) was active across much of the South, bringing jobs and much needed construction to many impoverished areas. Only three years after Camp Cherokee became a reality, a new Order of the Arrow lodge was established. The Order of the Arrow lodge is a group of National Honor Campers of the BSA dedicated to cheerful service and camp promotion.
The Tsalagi Lodge was chartered in 1938. Since that time, the lodge has functioned as an extraordinarily vibrant part of life in the Cherokee Council. This is due in no small part to Allen “Doc” Lewis, who actively worked with the Order of the Arrow Lodge from 1941 until his death in 2004. He has embodied everything for which Scouting stands, while working with the Scouts, his community, his church, and local historical societies. Another prominent longtime Cherokee contributor is Lindley Butler. Mr. Butler is a prominent North Carolina historian and professor emeritus who received his Eagle Award from Troop 8 in Eden in 1954. In 1994, the Cherokee Council joined the Old North State Council to become one of the most prominent and historically rich Scouting Councils in the nation.
General Greene Council History
The General Greene Council was founded in 1947. For nearly thirty years prior it was known as the Greensboro Council. Its first president was C. W. Gold, who presided during the council’s first two years, 1918-1919. As one of the oldest councils in the region, the Greensboro Council was started just before American soldiers began returning home from Europe when World
War 1 ended in November 1918. Although Troop 1 of Greensboro predated the formation of the Council by eight years, it was operating and serving the local community by 1912. The Greensboro/General Greene Council has a rich history of Scouting and Scouters, which included former Greensboro Mayor Victor Nussbaum, who served as president in 1983-84.
Summer programs at Camps Graystone, Wenasa, and Nikwasi provided Scouts with opportunities to learn, strengthen, and reinforce skills and values that would help them throughout their lives. A generation of scouts obtained training in nautical skills at the Sea Scout base on High Rock Lake. Area Scouts have also received a historical education through their affiliation with Guilford Courthouse National Military Park. For more than seventy years, the Council actively contributed to the education and enrichment of its Scouts and community. General Greene eventually merged with the Uwharrie Council to form the Old North State Council in 1992.
Uwharrie Council History
The Uwharrie Council was founded in 1923 and named for the beautiful Uwharrie Mountains, one of the world’s oldest ranges in North America that were once part of a volcanic chain that stood almost 20,000 feet high.
The first president, H.A. Millis, served for eighteen years, from 1923-1941. No one has contributed as much to the professionalism and organization of the Council as Weaver Marr. Bunn Hackney took this foundation and contributed greatly to the growth of the Council and the development of Camp Uwharrie near Jamestown. Today the Uwharrie National forest covers more than 50,000 acres in Randolph, Montgomery, and Davidson Counties. Just outside the boundaries of this forest is the first permanent location for year-round Cub Scout programming, Woodfield Scout Preservation.
One of the most well-known structures at the Old Camp Uwharrie was the Berlin Lodge. Irving Berlin is said to have written “God Bless America” while staying at Camp Uwharrie.
Whether the story is apocryphal or not, the Lodge is named for one of America’s most significant composers. In 1992, the Uwharrie Council became part of the Old North State Council. Today it anchors the southern most boundary of the Council, where it straddles the dividing line between the Piedmont and Sandhills.
Old North State Council History
The Old North State Council was formed in 1992 from the General Greene and Uwharrie Councils. The Council’s first president was George McLarty. Two years after its inception, the Old North State Council added the Cherokee Council. Today the forward-looking Council incorporates much of the past into its everyday life. It includes Woodfield Scout Preservation on Lake Reese and Camp Cherokee camps as well as Hemric Reservation on Kerr Lake (which can only be reached by boat) and Hagan Sea Scout Base on High Rock Lake. The Old North State Council serves much of central North Carolina and includes areas ranging from Mebane to Mocksville and everywhere in between in the Akela, Alamance, Battlefield, Cherokee, Conestee, General Greene, Hycotee, Randolph, and Uwharrie districts.
The Old North State Council hopes to build upon its past legacy of achievement by reaching out to new generations of young Scouts. By doing so, the Council is attempting to secure a more promising future for its Scouts, community, and nation. The Mission Statement of the Boy Scouts of America is to prepare young people to make ethical choices over their lifetimes by instilling in them the values of the Scout Oath and Law. Surely those efforts have paid off for the tens of thousands of Scouts who have contributed to and gained from participating in Scouting in the North Carolina piedmont.