Scouting History

Scouting History in the Heart of America Council - August 2016

by Andy Dubill, Council Historian

The Great Photo Contest of 1915

Both McCleskey Photo Supply and K.C. Photo Supply (located close to one another and the Scout Headquarters at 10th and Grand) encouraged Scouts to purchase a Kodak camera, film and supplies to take advantage of the photo contest announced in the previous edition of the The Mid-West Scout magazine. Ralph Baird, the famous newspaper photographer would judge the contest classes:

• Class A—Wild animals, birds or fish in their native habitat.

• Class B—Boy Scout activities.

• Class C—Landscapes, interiors and portraits.

The prizes for the contest were a silver Scout honor medal for the best picture entered and $2.00 worth of photographic supplies for the best picture in each class.

It was also announced that McCleskey, the photo merit badge instructor, would be in camp to teach Scouts how to capture the perfect shot of a thrush or ground squirrel. Scoutmaster Allen of Troop 19 was a merit badge examiner for the toughest merit badge to earn—stalking. He would be in camp to help Scouts get enough animal and bird pictures to qualify for the merit badge which had only been earned eight times in America

If you have questions about Scouting history that would be good topics for future columns email Andy Dubill at