Unseen for Fifty Years...
The 1960 and 1961 Scout-a-Ramas

The Louis Agassiz Fuertes Council, which covered Tompkins and Tioga Counties in New York, held periodic Scout Shows or Scout-a-Ramas at Barton Hall on the Cornell University campus. The Tioughnioga Council in neighboring Cortland County also held periodic Scout Shows, usually in the Armory in Cortland. After LAF Council merged with Tioughnioga Council in 1975, the new Baden-Powell Council continued to hold these shows through the mid-80's. 

At one time the largest indoor space in New York State, Barton Hall covers over two acres. As you can see from these pictures, there was a time when a two-county Council in Central New York could not just put together a show in Barton Hall - we filled it from end-to-end! 

As I was going through one of the boxes of old negatives left over when the Baden-Powell Council office in Dryden was closed, I found two envelopes of 4x5" black-and-white negatives labeled "1960 Scout Show" - from the Tioughnioga Council show in Scouting's 50th Anniversary year - and "1961 Scout Show" from the Barton Hall Scout-a-Rama of that year. Presumably, these negatives had been printed back in 1960 and '61, but those prints were long ago scattered and lost. I scanned the negatives, and here they are, for the first time in half a century - a look at Scouting in its heyday, fifty years ago. 

- Mike Brown
Taughannock District Commissioner

A scale model of Camp Barton. It's smaller than we would expect today - the camp property stopped not far west of the last campsite. The area between there and Route 89 would not be purchased for another eight years, yet. 

Cub Scout Packs

Pack 2 in Ithaca displayed Plaster Molding.

Pack 3 in Trumansburg with a display on Fire Prevention. 
Pack 3 continues to serve Trumansburg in 2012. 

Pack 4 Ithaca ran a Pinewood Derby, still a favorite Cub activity today. 
Pack 4 is still around, one of the largest packs in the District. 

Pack 8 was in Varna. This is their display on Indian Lore. 

Pack 10 Groton, has a display on South America. Pack 10 still exists. 

Pack 22 was the Jacksonville pack in 1961. They had a display on Cub Games.

Pack 24 in Dryden did "Fun in Fitness". They're still going strong today. 

Pack 25 Ithaca, with Leather and Boondoggles. Pack 25 was sponsored by Beebe Chapel, along with Troop 25 and Ship 25 (the SSS Spear). The pack and troop are gone, but the Ship has recently been restarted.

Pack 39 in Lansing showing their mobiles. Today's Lansing pack is Pack 48.

Pack 46 in Freeville / Etna with their display on Plant Growing - note the
rustic Cub with straw hat and "Good for Nothing".
Pack 46 remains active in Freeville. 

Pack 49 in Danby with a display on the dawning Space Age - this show was only a few months after Alan Shepard became the first American in space, and the Cubs were ready to follow. 

Pack 50 Enfield with a display of birdhouses and feeders. Pack 22 serves Enfield today. 

Pack 50 in East Homer had two booths - a Country Store (above), and Model Airplanes (at right)

Pack 51 in Cortland had a display on the Cub's progress "From Bobcat to Scout".

Pack 90 Marathon were coloring Easter eggs (I think - the booth sign wasn't visible). 
Pack 90 continues in Marathon today. 

This Cub unit is something we don't have today - Neighborhood Den 25 from Blodgett's Mills. Neighborhood Dens were organized in areas which were too small to support entire Packs. 

Cortland's Armory Scout Show had a Pinewood Derby track, too - seven lanes wide!
I don't know who the guy in the police uniform was, but he managed to get himself into nearly every picture, at least until I cropped him out. 

Boy Scout Troops

Ithaca's Troop 1, with "Scouting in Miniature". 
Troop 1 survived into the 21st Century, but has been gone since 2009.

Troop 2 Ithaca built a big gateway as a Pioneering project. 
Troop 2 is still building pioneering projects today.

Troop 3 Trumansburg shows the many ways of Signaling. Both Troop 3 and Signaling Merit Badge are gone, sadly. Troop 13 carries on as Trumansburg's Scout Troop. 

Troop 4 Ithaca demonstrates Cooking techniques. 
Our district's oldest troop, Troop 4 will celebrate its 100th year in 2016. 

Troop 10 Groton Scouts with a display of Hobbies. 
Today's Groton troop is Troop 77. 

Troop 12 Ithaca and Astronomy - complete with an astronaut. 
Troop 12 continued on for many years, but did not recharter in 2010. 

Troop 17 Spencer with Tenderfoot Requirements. Troop 17 continues in the Hiawatha District.

Troop 24 Dryden put on a topical display on "Radiation and Fallout", with a chart of the effects of radioactive Iodine on the thyroid of a cow. 1961 was still in the darkest times of the Cold War (the Cuban Missile Crisis was a year later), and "Duck and Cover" drills in every elementary school kept nuclear war in the forefront of Scout-age boys' minds. 

Troop 24 is very much alive and well in Dryden, but thankfully no longer focusing on fallout...

Troop 27 McLean's Scouts show how to ensure "Comfort in Camp".

Troop 29 in Freeville demonstrates First Aid techniques. 
This troop has recently been restarted, after a forty-year hiatus.

Troop 30 Newark Valley with a display on Home Repairs. 
Troop 30 is still meeting, fifty years later - hopefully some of those home repairs lasted as well. 

Troop 33 Lodi with a knot board.

Troop 36 Nichols with a display on Electricity. 
Troop 36 still exists, now in the Hiawatha District of the Baden-Powell Council (release 2.0).

Troop 37 Owego with a general "Show and Do" display.

Troop 38 Owego with a Physics display. Troop 38 is still there, now in the Hiawatha District.

Troop 39 with Plant and Animal Conservation.

Troop 43 Apalachin's display had a Cold War emphasis, too - "Scouting and the National Defense".

Troop 49 Danby's display on "Our Flag" - Old Glory, the new 50-star flag (Alaska and Hawaii had joined the Union only two year before), and... the flags of the UN and Israel?

Troop 52 in Mecklenburg with a personal demonstration of Personal Fitness.

Troop 53 Owego with a demonstration of Celestial Navigation. 

Troop 57 Owego Scouts with Stamp Collecting.

Troop 59 Ithaca's display on Weather. 

Troop 64 Ithaca showing Emergency Troop Rescue. Mouth-to-Mouth resuscitation was something new, replacing the back-pressure and raised-arms method the Scouts had used since 1911.
CPR would not be introduced for another year or two. 

Troop 80 Cortland with a display on Electricity. The symbol on the wall to the right of the booth sign is a transistor - really high tech in 1960!
Troop 80 continued on until 2010. 

Troop 81 Cuyler's Scouts show off their "Look Out Tower". 

Troop 85 Homer with a display on Conservation and Forestry. Note the campaign hat on the third Scout from the left - overseas caps were more common in 1960, but the occasional Scout still had the traditional headgear.

Troop 86 Cortland displays Pioneering, table-top style.

Troop 87 Cortland with its pets - although the raccoon in the cage isn't really petable (the sign says he bites). 

Troop 88 Cortland had an Electricity display (above), and also a signal tower (at right).

Troop 94 Cortland with a display on knot tying. 
Troop 94 was the Tioughnioga Council's oldest troop at the time of the 1975 merger. It lasted until the late 70's, and several attempts were made to restart it, unsuccessfully, in the 1980's. The troop was restarted again a few years ago, and is presently the largest troop in Cortland. 

Troop 98 Homer with a lashings display. Troop 98 survived into the late 80's. It was succeeded by Troop 79, which is the Homer troop today. 

Troop 100 Cortland with its model campsite.

Troop 102 also had a model campsite. The Scouts are working on fire-by-friction.

Indian Dance Team at the 1960 Cortland Scout Show.

The Scout Shop at the Scout-a-Rama. Buy your Scout books here!

Older Boy Programs
Exploring - Sea Explorers - Air Explorers

In 1961 there were a number of older-boy programs in the BSA (Exploring would not start to admit girls until more than a decade in the future). 
"Greenie" Explorers wore a dark-green uniform, and the high-adventure oriented program was similar to today's Venturing. Later in the 1960's, Exploring would transition into a career-oriented program.

Explorer Post 4 - Photography

McLean's Explorer Post 27 with a display on Fly Tying

Explorer Post 56 Owego brought their bus and canoe from a canoe trop to Canada.

Ithaca's Explorer Post 59 with a demonstration of Two-way Radio. That would have been Ham Radio - Citizens' Band had just been introduced for business use, and the Family Radio and cell phone was decades in the future.

Explorer Post 86 Cortland demonstrating Physical Fitness

Sea Explorer Ship 2 Cortland, showing Underwater Exploration, complete with hard-hat diving suit. In 1961, Sea Exploring was the name for Sea Scouts, one of Scouting's oldest programs (the name reverted to "Sea Scouts" in 1995).

Sea Explorer Ship 4 Cortland, showing off their dress blues. 

Ship 25 - the Sea Scout Ship (S.S.S.) Spear - had been a fixture in Ithaca's Scouting world since the 1920's. The Spear sailed to New York City in 1939 as part of the Worlds Fair Service Corps, had been a Regional Flagship several times during the 1940's.
Ship 25 ceased operations in the late 1960's, but it has been restarted and is going strong today as our district's only Sea Scout Ship.

Air Explorer Squadron 33 Ithaca
Air Scouts started as a World War II program, and was renamed "Air Explorers" around 1950. Later in the 1960's, Air Exploring became Aviation Exploring in the new career-oriented Exploring system.

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