Goodman

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Five Chicago Lodges Merge

On May 18, 1929 E. Urner Goodman Scout Executive acting as Supreme Chief of the Fire merged together the five Chicago Lodges initiated by his old Assistant Camp Director Carroll A. Edson. The Grand Lodge had maintained a rule that councils could have one lodge for each of their Scout camps. Goodman constructively ended that rule, as Chicago was the only Council remaining with more than one lodge.

WWW Threatened with Extinction

In 1922 the BSA was 12 years old. It was still a young organization. To improve the Scout program and to train the professional corps, the BSA held Biennial National Meetings of Scout executives. In September 1922 the Scout executives gathered at the Blue Ridge Assembly near Asheville, North Carolina.

First Vigil Honor Sash

The only known photograph of the original sash for Third Degree (Vigil Honor) members is from the rededication council fire at Camp Biddle during the 1921 first meeting of the Grand Lodge. The photo shows the three part “bib” type sash around both E. Urner Goodman’s and Carroll A. Edson’s necks. One side of the triangle had an arrow pointing over the right shoulder signifying the First Degree. One side of the triangle had an arrow pointing over the left shoulder signifying the Second Degree. The third side of the triangle had an arrow pointing to Goodman’s left as he wore it. The third arrow and side completed the triangle, which was the sign of the Third Degree. There are no other known pictures showing this bib; nor are there any known bib type sashes in collections or displays. There is also no evidence that anyone other than Goodman and Edson ever wore this sash.

First Modern Vigil Honor Ceremony

According to Edson, he recalled returning to Treasure Island at the end of camp in 1916 where he and Goodman wrote the ritual for the Second Degree (then equivalent to Vigil Honor). Edson further recalled that Goodman was put through that ritual. It is presumed that this is the ceremony that Edson experienced when he kept his vigil.

There is no known copy of this ritual. Presumably the Second Degree ceremony was evolving just like both parts of the First Degree ceremonies were evolving.

First Grand Lodge Officers

The first elections for officers of the Grand Lodge were held at the first Grand Lodge Meeting pursuant to the newly ratified constitution. There were three offices: The Grand Chieftain (Eluwak Kittakima), The Grand Scribe (Eluwak Lekhiket) and The Grand Treasurer (Eluwak Mawachpo).

OA Charter Members

The Constitution of the Wimachtendienk approved in June 1916 states in section IV – Membership:

Charter Membership – The directors of Treasure Island Camp for the season of 1915 together with all those who, elected to membership in the order during that season, have previous to the 1st day of July 1916, signified their wish and intention to maintain interest and membership in the order, shall constitute its charter membership.

Organizational Meeting

Following the success of the Wimachtendienk W.W. during the summer of 1915 and reflection upon the experience at Treasure Island it was decided that this new Honor Campers Society needed to be formalized and moved forward.

To that end, he wrote an invitation to all 25 inductees from that summer at Treasure Island. It was a short letter dated November 4, 1915 and signed by Goodman as Nuwingi – Chief of the Fire. It said:

Spring Formation Meeting - First Constitution

In order to perpetuate and better establish Wimachtendienk W. W., a meeting of the members was held on November 13, 1915 at Camp Morrell.

The following committees were appointed (with respective youth chairmen):

First Ceremony

There is no written copy of the ritual used for induction of members into the Order throughout the 1915 Treasure Island camping season.

In 1965 the Unami Lodge released a copy of a ceremony purported to be the first ceremony. However, after discussions with Arrowmen active in the Lodge in 1965 and with the 1975 Lodge Chief, Phil Hittner, it is clear that the “first ceremony” released was a composite of later ceremonies and editorial license was taken based on what was believed to have happened. Factually the following is known:

First Vigil

The founders had intended that the first Vigil Honor should be for a youth who achieved an outstanding accomplishment or performed a heroic deed. At the close of 1915 Treasure Island summer camp season a small group including Carroll Edson, Harry Yoder and non-member Horace Kern decided that Goodman should be selected for what in 1916 would be called the Second Degree and today is recognized as the first Vigil Honor.

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