Lodge History - '40s

The Forties

1945

The July 1945 issue of the National Bulletin writes of a new universal arrow pin for uniform wear. When the latest list of areas was printed, Area J, which was the same Area Ini-To would be aligned with later in the year, was the latest area. Few records regarding the lodge were kept by the Council, due mainly to the lack of record keeping space.

Mr. John M. Vantrease, Council Scout Executive at the time, was one of the chief instigators in forming an Order of the Arrow Lodge in the Flint River Council. Records indicate that an induction team from the Georgia Carolina Council, headquartered in Augusta, Georgia, conducted the original "Calling Out" ceremony on October 17, 1945, at Camp Thunder. Members of the Bob White Lodge #87 comprised the induction team. The twelve candidates were tapped by an arrow, which was never broken.

Candidates for this initial Ordeal were picked by Mr. Vantrease and their Troop peers, and were informed at summer camp to come to camp on the Ordeal date. The twelve charter Arrowmen misunderstood Mr. Vantrease when he told them they would be inducted into the Order of the Arrow. They thought he had said 'Order of the Error'.

Candidates slept under the stars with no sleeping bag. They were allowed only a mattress cover. Hazing did occur during Ordeal night. Charter candidate, Arthur Maddox recalls he was placed by the steps of a camp building and had to move during the night due to the flea infestation under the steps. Candidates were given two matches to start the fire for their next morning's breakfast.

Ordeal work consisted of building a fire altar at the location of the camp council ring of that day, and establishing the original Order of the Arrow council ring. This was located in the swamp, approximately 200 feet north of Thundering Springs and approximately 200 yards east of the lake dam. This site was in use for the next five years and was years later submerged by the construction of the now existing canoeing lake.

The large stones for building the fire altar were pulled from the hillside, near the present winter cabin, by one of the Bob White Lodge Arrowmen, and handed to the candidate to be carried to the site by the lake.

The youth conducting the Ordeal, (no adults were in the camp), each had a paddle with holes drilled in it. The paddles were used during the day to make it appear as more of an ordeal In truth, the paddles were never used. This first Ordeal ceremony was conducted in the area around the old swimming lake, now known as the upper, or trout lake.

The Charter Arrowmen did not receive an Ordeal sash, but a sterling silver dangle. An example of the dangle is pictured above. Ini-To's original name was Thundering Springs Lodge.

The twelve Ini-To Charter members were:

1. Ray Barron
2. Sammy Brewton
3. Paul Dawkins
4. Ray Howard
5. Arthur Maddox, Jr. (D)
6. Dick Mauney (D)
7. Jim Moore
8. Norman "Moose" Morris
9. Walter Murphy
10. Dick Osborne (D)
11. Ira "Dutch" Slade
12. Tee Suddith

Griffin
Thomaston
Thomaston
Griffin
Griffin
Griffin
Thomaston
Thomaston
Thomaston
Griffin
Griffin
McDonough

D = Deceased

The Initial Lodge Officers were:

Chief
Vice Chief
Secretary
Treasurer
Lay Advisor
Staff Advisor

Arthur Maddox, Jr.
Jim Moore
Walter Murphy
?
None
Mr. John M. Vantrease (D)

Griffin
Thomaston
Thomaston
?
None
Griffin

Ini-To's alignment in the Charter year was in Area J. The Area J Fellowship meeting in 1945 was held at Camp Echockotee, in the northeast portion of Florida, and was hosted by Echockotee Lodge #200. A leather patch was issued to those arrowmen in attendance. No Ini-To arrowmen attended this November meeting. An example of the neckerchief slide can be viewed in Appendix C-5 under Conclave Patches.


1946

The Lodge Officers were:

Chief
Vice Chief
Secretary
Treasurer
Lay Advisor
Staff Advisor

Unknown
Unknown
Unknown
Unknown
None
Mr. John M. Vantrease

Unknown
Unknown
Unknown
Unknown
None
Griffin

Again on November 2 4, the Area J Fellowship was held at Camp Echockotee in northeast Florida, with Echockotee Lodge #200 as host. A leather neckerchief slide was issued to each arrowman in attendance. The Order of the Arrow National Treasurer, J. Rucker Newberry was in attendance. Area J consisted of eleven lodges from South Carolina, Georgia and portions of Florida. The author has found no evidence of an Ini-To arrowman in attendance. An example of the issued neckerchief slide can be viewed in Appendix C-5, under Conclave Patches.

Mr. Charlie Smith, the first caretaker of Camp Thunder died. He served from 1938 until 1946. He was replaced by Mr. J. W. Ansley.

In the July 1946 National Bulletin, recommendations by the National Executive Committee on Brotherhood were made. They were:

(1) That at least 12 months tenure be required.
(2) That candidates have attended the majority of Lodge functions.
(3) That candidates be registered in the Boy Scouts of America.
(4) That a candidate be at least 15 years old.

The last piece of printed material the Lodges received before the 1946 National meeting was a booklet on Indian ritual costumes. It was compiled by a committee of Orville Boss, J. Faryl McChanaban, and Vincent Pokrak (all of Owassippi Lodge #7 of Chicago) . Archie Wilson of Pokagon Lodge #110 from Hammond, Indiana also contributed to the booklet.

On August 26 29 the first National Lodge Meeting saw 984 delegates from l 14 Lodges from 24 states. The National Chief was Robert H. Heistand from Baltimore, Maryland.


1947

The Lodge Officers were:

Chief
Vice Chief
Secretary
Treasurer
Lay Advisor
Staff Advisor

Paul Dawkins
Unknown
Unknown
Unknown
None
Mr. John M. Vantrease

Thomaston
Unknown
Unknown
Unknown
None
Griffin

On March 14 16, 1947, the first Area Z fellowship meeting was held at Camp Barstow, South Carolina. The meeting was hosted by Muscogee Lodge #221. Area Z consisted of the Lodges in South Carolina, and the northern half of Georgia. During this time, the Host Lodge Chief also served as the Area Chief. The scout who served in this capacity was Eugene Pate. A felt patch was issued, and the fee for the weekend was $3.00. No evidence of any of our Lodge members in attendance exists. An example of the patch issued at this meeting can be viewed in Appendix C-5 under Conclave Patches. In December 1947, the Order of the Arrow National Secretary John C. Norsk reports there were 331 active Lodges with 46, 270 arrowmen, including 40,660 Ordeal, 5,141 Brotherhood and 469 Vigil members. The first Order of the Arrow Handbook, by Rucker Newberry, was released.


1948

The Lodge Officers were:

Chief
Vice Chief
Secretary
Treasurer
Lay Advisor
Staff Advisor

Paul Dawkins
Sammy Brewton
Ray Barron
Norman "Moose" Morris
None
Mr. Fred Hayes

Thomaston
Thomaston
Griffin
Thomaston
None
Griffin

John Vantrease left our council in February 1948, to continue his scouting career by becoming the Council Executive in Augusta, Georgia, for the Georgia Carolina Council. Mr. Vantrease was instrumental in forming Ini-To Lodge, which just three years earlier, had conducted its original CallingOut ceremony. Our Lodge was constituted mainly due to the efforts of this one man. Reflecting upon what the Lodge has become, we would do well to remember what the labor of one dedicated individual can ultimately accomplish.

The first rifle range was established at Camp Thunder.

On March 29, 1948, Mr. Joseph A. Brunton, Scout Executive for the Greater New York Council, wrote Chief Scout Executive, Mr. Elbert K. Fretwell, suggesting that the Order of the Arrow be integrated into the Boy Scouts of America. In May of the same year, at the National Council Meeting, the National Executive Board approved the full integration of the Order of the Arrow into Scouting. In early July, the Order of the Arrow Executive Committee met and approved relinquishing it's authority to the Boy Scouts of America. Those individuals sitting as members of the Order of the Arrow Executive Committee became the National Committee of the Order, a sub committee of the National Camping and Special Events Committee.

Mr. Joe L. Ballanger became the Council Scout Executive of Flint River Council and the Supreme Chief of the Fire of Ini-To Lodge. Mr. Fred Hayes was Assistant Scout Executive and Staff Advisor to the Lodge. Elections for the lodge officers were held in the spring.

The Lodge Pre Ordeal and Ordeal Teams were composed of the following members:

Mighty Chief
Guide
Guard
Medicine Man

Paul Dawkins
Norman "Moose" Morris
Ray Barron
Ira "Dutch" Slade

Unali'yi Lodge #236 of Charleston, South Carolina, hosted the 1948 Area Z Fellowship, at Camp Ho Nan Wah. Participants during this meeting were encouraged to bring material to swap. From this was born patch trading in our area. Harold Leamond was the Area Chief. Robert H. Heistand, the National Chief, attended. A cloth patch was issued, which can be viewed in Appendix C-5, under Conclave Patches

Candidates for the Ordeal Honor were seated in a general area, off to the side of the other scouts in attendance, and were tapped out while still seated by Chief Paul Dawkins. After dancing the dance "of the dying crow", Paul would tap the candidates on the shoulder with a feather. Candidates would then return to Camp Thunder after summer camp had ended, to take on the rigors of the Ordeal. Scout Troop 62, of McDonough, Georgia, gave Chief Dawkins a double trailer Chiefs' bonnet, in kit form.

The Ordeal consisted of gathering rocks to be used in construction of the stone gate located at the gate cabin, or the caretaker's cabin, as it was known in those days. This gate is located at the walk beside the current dining hall.

Mr. J. W. Ansley, second caretaker of Camp Thunder, resigned. He served from 1946 through 1948.

September 13 marked the National Meeting, held at Indiana University. Over 1,000 arrowmen from across the nation gathered for this meeting. Seminars were held in a way to set the agenda for national meetings to come. Patch swapping took place and was even encouraged. From the time earlier in the year, when the Order of the Arrow merged with the Boy Scouts of America, the Order of the Arrow would rely on the development and use of youth leadership. The 1948 National Meeting came to a dose with H. Lloyd Nelson, past National Secretary and Chief, talking of the Order of the Arrow integration into the Boy Scouts of America. He pointed out the trend toward more youth leadership at all levels in the Order. He encouraged more use of youth leadership at the area level. The National Meeting Committees were served by a Chairman, who was a member of the Order of the Arrow Committee, and a Junior Chairman selected from the different Lodges throughout the nation. This would become more evident as time passed. Founder E. Urner Goodman gave the keynote address, speaking on "The Obligations of Select Men".

He set four objectives for the "select" of the Order:

 

(1) That true greatness is in humility.
(2) That the members seek to join our new aristocracy of service instead of the aristocracy of means and birth.
(3) That the earnest members must have "unquenchable optimism" to persevere in service.
(4) That all of us need the devotion and faith of a crusader.


J. Rucker was National Secretary. George Chapman was Chairman of the Vigil Honor. National Chief Robert Heinstand installed Kellock Hale as the first Order of the Arrow committee Chairman. Participants of this meeting were issued a metal pin, which can be seen in Appendix D-1, under NOAC.


1949

The Lodge Officers were:

Chief
Vice Chief
Secretary
Treasurer
Lay Advisor
Staff Advisor

Sammy Brewton
Ray Barron
Dick Mauney
Unknown
None
Mr. Fred Hayes

Thomaston
Griffin
Griffin
Unknown
None
Griffin

The Lodge's Indian name of Ini-To was chosen by Mr. Joe Ballanger, (Scout Executive of the Council and founder of our Lodge) Jack Langford, Jr., and Dick Mauney. Its proper pronunciation is "e natoe. " The Lodge name is in the language of the Navajo Nation, and is roughly translated "Thundering Springs". "Ini" means "Thundering", and "To" means "Water".

Mr. Tallman O. Riggins was appointed as the third caretaker of Camp Thunder in 1949.

A-1

The original arrowhead shaped lodge patch shown above was designed by Dick Mauney and Jack Langford, Jr., both of Griffin, Georgia. The Lodge ordered 200, at a cost of $0.11 each. The patch is commonly referred to today as the A-1. An example can also be viewed in Appendix E 9, under Lodge Patches.

The Lodge Pre Ordeal and Ordeal Teams were composed of the following members:

Mighty Chief
Guide
Guard
Medicine Man

Dick Osborne
Dick Mauney
Ray Barron
Ray Howard

The third and last Area Z Fellowship was held at Camp Old Indian and hosted by Atta Kulla Kulla Lodge #185 near Greenville, South Carolina. Ini-To Lodge was represented by Paul Dawkins, Floyd Brown and Moose Morris. An Area Z softball game was organized, and the Lodges present from Georgia were formed into a team with Ini-To charter member Moose Morris as Captain. A cloth patch was issued, which can be viewed in Appendix C-5, under Conclave Patches.

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The Flint River Council

Ini-To Lodge is composed of Order of the Arrow members who are registered

Scouts and Scouters in the Flint River Council.

We are located in central Georgia with our council office in Griffin.