Mark Arend (arend@PEOPLES.NET)
Mon, 11 Nov 1996 12:41:49 -0600
Since there seems to be some interest in the 1935 Jamboree being canceled I
looked up this first-hand account:
"I still remembered the National Jamboree of 1935. I hadnot been
part of our local contingent for that trip, but a few of my Scouts had, and
I went to the station to see them off. The whole contingent was lined up
beside our special train, awaiting the signal to board it, when Skipper
Gunnison, who was our Scout executive at that time, came rushing up to them.
"'The Jamboree is off, fellows!' he cried, 'You can't go!'
"A roar of laugter went up from everyone. It took Skipper several
minutes to convince us that he was not joking. The Jamboree had indeed been
called off, by long-distance telephone to Scout executives all over the
country, only a few minutes before some troops were to start the trip.
"The reason was that an infantile paralysis epidemic had erupted in
Washington, D.C., the proposed site of the Jamboree. To pack thirty
thousand boys together in one huge camp while polio raged around its
borders, might have tempted fate. So, at then end of a year of ceaseless
preparation, the National Staff canceled the whole enormous project on a few
hour's notice. No one will ever know what heartburn and frustration may
have been felt at 2 Park Avenue on the day the decision was made.
...[the author attended the 1949 Jamboree]..."There was no such bad
luck this year. ... Actually, although we were ignorant of it at the time,
we did come rather close to a repetition of the 1935 fiasco. A Scout died
suddenly of polio en route to Valley Forge. If he had been in camp when
stricken, perhaps the Jamboree might have been stopped, even with Troops
--from Be Prepared
by Rice E. Cochran
Mark W. Arend
Beaver Dam Community Library
311 N. Spring St. Outside of a dog, a book is
Beaver Dam, Wisc. 53916 man's best friend. Inside of
(414) 887-4631 (fax 887-4633) a dog it's too dark to read.
Scoutmaster, Troop 736
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City