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Goodman - Early Years of OA

Urner Goodman enjoyed much success in the early days of his career as a professional Scouter. Good with people, a gifted writer and speaker and an effective organizer, he knew how to motivate volunteers and staff.

Early on he attracted the attention of national BSA leadership. Only on the job for a year, he and Carroll Edson attended the national meeting as observers. During one of the large sessions, he was pleasantly surprised when Chief Scout Executive Dr. James E. West called on him to describe the success Scouting was having in Philadelphia.

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:

First Officers Elected

The Constitution of Wimachtendienk defined the Offices of the Order. The Camp Director was assigned the office of Medu, Chief of the Fire. The Assistant Camp Director was the Vice-Chief of the Fire called Pow wow. These two offices along with the Scout Executive and any past Camp Director or Assistant Director made up the Advisory Council. These were the adult leadership offices of Wimachtendienk.

George Chapman

George W. Chapman is most remembered for being the first Chief in the Order. He was elected Sakima, Chief of Wimachtendienk in 1916. E. Urner Goodman had felt that it was important that a youth leader led the WWW.

Goodman Influenced - Story of Billy Clark

When the Treasure Island staff planned the first induction, Urner Goodman had one Scout in mind as the model of cheerful service he wanted for its members - Billy Clark.  Billy was a member of Philadelphia's Troop 1, led by Scoutmaster Goodman and is listed in their records as an “Assistant Scribe.” Years later Goodman described a troop campout at Treasure Island.

One time during our stay there, one of our charges came with a minor sickness. There was no medicine, no hospital on the island at all. So he had to stay in his tent and he had to be taken care of. Billy volunteered to be our live-in nurse for the two or three days he had to be there. And he did a good job of it.

Treasure Island

Treasure Island Scout Camp (also known as Treasure Island Scout Reservation) opened as a Philadelphia Council summer camp in 1913. The name Treasure Island had come from the popular Robert Louis Stevenson pirate novel of the same name published in 1883. Philadelphia used the pirate motif on some of their early promotional material. Treasure Island would become the longest continuously run Scout camp in the BSA and most notably, the birthplace of the Order of the Arrow.

Goodman & Edson Camp Directors

In April of 1915, E. Urner Goodman and Carroll A. Edson both were hired by Philadelphia Council and entered Professional Scouting at the age of 23. Philadelphia Scout Executive Walter S. Cowing appointed them both as  Field Commissioners (now called Field Executives). The following month the Philadelphia Council Camp Committee appointed Goodman as Camp Director at Treasure Island Scout Reservation and Edson as his Assistant Camp Director in charge of commissary.

WWW Founded

Goodman and Edson had explained their plans for the establishment of a camp honor society to camp leaders at Treasure Island.

The date of the first induction had been set, July 16, 1915. Two of the Troops on the island had held an election of members.  George Chapman described the event in The Arrow and the Vigil as follows:

Birthplace of WWW Opens

The island on which Treasure Island Reservation is located has been the topic of several historical investigations to confirm the ownership and the state to which the island belongs.

In 1783, commissioners appointed by the legislatures of Pennsylvania and New Jersey entered into a treaty, one of the purposes of which was to allocate to each State the islands lying in the Delaware River north of the falls of Trenton. The treaty was ratified by both legislatures in 1783. The part of the treaty that speaks to the island known as Treasure Island was that each island was annexed to the State to which it was physically closest.

W. D. Boyce

William D. Boyce was an American businessman and millionaire who owned numerous newspapers in the United States and Canada as well as a publishing company. In the early 1900s, he started to focus more on philanthropic projects than on business matters. It was during this time, as he was traveling around the world, that legend has it he was shown his way in London by an unknown Scout. The story goes on that the Scout refused gratuity, merely doing his duty as a Scout. The Scout is said to have then directed Boyce to the Scout headquarters.

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