Scouting History

Scouting History in the Heart of America Council - November 2015

by Andy Dubill, Council Historian

Summer Camp Moves to Elk Springs in 1913

Thanks to a membership boom in the early days, Scouting in Kansas City needed to find a remote and accommodating location for its future summer camps. While Dallas, Missouri and Overland Park, Kansas served the fledgling council well in the first two summers of Scouting in the Heart of America, it was time for a more adventurous and challenging location suited to the needs of two-thousand Scouts who were now a part of the program in the Kansas City area.

Council leaders surveyed a number of locations in Kansas and Missouri and settled on Elk Springs, Missouri. Elk Springs was located along the Elk River in southern Missouri about four miles outside of Noel, Missouri. It was considered a very remote area in those days although Noel would eventually become more popular as more people acquired automobiles and could make the all day trip. The Ozark Mountain area was quite beautiful and the dogwood and redbud trees made for breathtaking scenery along southern Missouri’s Elk River. From 1913 through 1917, the Kansas City Council held summer camp in Elk Springs, Missouri. In those days, Scouts from both Kansas and Missouri generally attended summer camp together.

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