Part II: Old York County Boy Scout camp still teaching lessons
A group of Scouts sits along Conewago Creek in Strinestown-area’s Camp Ganoga in this undated photograph. The old Boy Scout camp, which closed after World War II, accommodated diverse groups of Scouts. (See additional photo below.) Background posts: Old Ganoga Bridge: ‘It is a highly unusual sight in York County’ and Once popular Ganoga Bridge now lightly used York County landmark and Big Conewago serves as physical, symbolic divider of York County culture.
The Boy Scouts were in the news locally in their quest for a world knot-tying record.
That prompted me to link the post Old York County Boy Scout camp still teaching lessons to that story telling about how Camp Ganoga near Strinestown was an place where white and black young people camped in the summer.
This prompted local student of history and scouting enthusiast George Hay Kain III to give some interesting background about diversity in York County Scouting:
Workers build a frame for the new Ganoga Bridge over the Conewago Creek between Newberry and Conewago Townships. The old bridge will be taken down once the new bridge is open. For years, the area near the old Susquehanna Trail bridge was known as the location of Camp Ganoga. Today, it’s the site of a new bridge.
As a youth member and later as Scoutmaster of Troop 37 in York PA, I am proud to tell you that we were a mixed-race, multiple-cultural troop of Boy Scouts from the first day of our founding in 1941 by Rabbi Alexander D. Goode. We’ve had well over 100 Eagle Scouts since then, and many were Black. We were the first Boy Scout troop in the United States to have boys earn religious awards in the Protestant, Catholic, and Jewish faiths. The troop continues those traditions to this day. Rabbi Goode later gave his life to save others as one of the Four Chaplains during the sinking of the troopship Dorchester in World War II.