Scouting Hall of Famers
By Jim Gates
Scout units across the country will be celebrating the 100th Anniversary of the Boy Scouts of America throughout the 2010 calendar year. Those of us who live in upstate New York recently saw a jamboree of more than 650 scouts, hosted by the Otschodela Council, which recognized this centenary under the leadership of Troop 1 of nearby Unadilla, N.Y.
The National Baseball Hall of Fame has also been involved with scouting for several years, as we sponsor a special patch via the Otschodela Council which Scouts earn by completing a scavenger hunt during their visit to the Museum. Throughout the year, we see scout units from all corners of the country working on the patch, and we recently hosted a group from Troop 28 of Chatham, N.J. This unit, headed up by Scoutmaster Steve Woodall, arrived in the area on Friday evening, May 21st, and spent the night at the local scouting reservation, Camp Henderson.
They were up bright an early on Saturday morning for a day-long visit to the Hall of Fame, and as it just so happens they found the date of their visit to coincide with our special World Series Championship weekend. Many members of this Troop are die-hard Yankees fans, and in addition to earning the patch, they had their photo taken with the 2009 New York Yankees World Series Trophy.
Troop 28 also received a behind-the-scenes tour courtesy of yours truly, who serves as a Scoutmaster for Cooperstown Troop 1254. The unit was able to learn about the archive operation, both how we take care of material and how we build the collection. As part of their visit, the boys had the chance to wear the white gloves and hold one of the bats from our collection, this one being a Derek Jeter model from 1998.
Following their day in Cooperstown, Troop 28 returned to Camp Henderson for another night of camping out, before heading to Howe Caverns on Sunday and then the drive back home to New Jersey. We hope that this visit is one which they will all remember for many years to come.
Scout units interested in learning more about the Hall of Fame patch are encouraged to contact the Otschodela Council. We look forward to seeing you in Cooperstown.
Jim Gates is the librarian of the National Baseball Hall of Fame Library.