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Scouting in Indiana has a long history, from the 1910s to the present day, serving thousands of youth in programs that suit the environment in which they live.

Early history (1910-1950)

Firecrafter was founded in Indianapolis, Indiana at Camp Belzer in the summer of 1920 by "Chief" Francis Oliver Belzer. Belzer also served as the first Scout Executive for the Indianapolis Council, later known as the Central Indiana Council.

In 1948 the National Order of the Arrow Conference was held at Indiana Universitymarker.

Recent history (1950-1990)

In 1950, 1956, 1961, 1965, 1969 and 1975, the National Order of the Arrow Conference was held at Indiana University, the most frequent venue for the event.

Scouting in Indiana today

There are ten Boy Scouts of America local councils in Indianamarker. All of Indiana lies within Central Region, except for Jefferson, Clark, Scott, Floyd and Washington counties, as part of Southern Region.

Anthony Wayne Area Council

Based in Fort Wayne, Indiana and covering 11 counties in Northeast Indiana - Adams, Wells, Jay, Huntington, Allen, DeKalb, LaGrange, Noble, Steuben, Whitley, Kosciusko. Anthony Wayne Area Council

  • Lincolnway District (Whitley and Kosciusko Counties)
  • Miami District (Southern Allen County)
  • Pokagon District (DeKalb, LaGrange, Noble, Steuben)
  • Three Rivers District (Learning for Life)
  • Thunderbird District (Northern Allen County)
  • Wabash Valley District (Adams, Huntington, Jay, Wells)

Features Anthony Wayne Scout Reservation with Camp Chief Little Turtle

Anthony Wayne Scout Reservation

The Anthony Wayne Scout Reservation is a Boy Scout camp located near Ashleymarker, Indianamarker, United Statesmarker. It is a local camp for the Anthony Wayne Area Council to hold summer camps, religious activities, and other events.

The reservation has three key areas: Camp Chief Little Turtle (CCLT), Camp Foellinger, and Camp Wilderness.
  • Camp Chief Little Turtle is the main camp. It has many activity centers, such as a waterfront, handicraft, outdoor skills, Project C.O.P.E., and other typical features of a Boy Scout camp.
  • Camp Foellinger is used mainly for special events, such as Cub Scout camp, National Youth Leadership Training, and Order of the Arrow events.
  • Camp Wilderness contains the Jack Zeiger Ropes Course — used for C.O.P.E. and rock climbing — and Orion, an area used for camping and wilderness survival training.

Buffalo Trace Council

The Buffalo Trace Council is a Boy Scout council based in Evansville, Indiana that serves southwestern Indianamarker and southeastern Illinois. Its affiliated Order of the Arrow lodge is Kiondaga Lodge. Buffalo Trace Council


The Buffalo Trace Council has operated three camps throughout its existence, two of which are still in existence. Camp Arthur, located near Vincennesmarker, opened in 1945 and was removed from the list of BSA-approved camping facilities for a time in the mid-1990s. Old Ben Scout Reservation (OBSR), located in Pike County, Indianamarker opened in 1985 on the site of an abandoned strip mine operated by the Old Ben Coal Company and was the council's current primary summer camp location, until a lack of funding forced the council to cease having summer camps there. Camp Pohoka was the previous summer camp location, but was shut down when OBSR was opened.


Algonkian (formerly Three Rivers)

Lincoln Heritage

Native Trails

Calumet Council

Calumet Council serves Scouts in Indiana and Illinoismarker. Calumet Council

Serving the youth of the 54 communities comprising the south suburbs of Chicagomarker and Northwest Indiana since 1917, the Calumet Council is the local entity of the Boy Scouts of America and Learning for Life Programs.

The Calumet Council, headquartered in Munster, Indianamarker, was formed in 1966. The Council is the result of a merger of the Pokagon Trails Council in Hammond, Indianamarker and the Sauk Trails Council in Gary, Indianamarker. In 1971 the Twin City Council in East Chicago, Indianamarker joined to make up the current structure. Camp Frank H. Betz, located in Berrien Springs, MI (USA) is operated by the Calumet Council. 'Betz' has served Scouts in the South Suburbs of Chicago and Northwest Indiana since 1922.

In 2006, over 13,000 young men and women were active members of the Scouting program in the Calumet Council. Over 4,100 adult volunteers, supported by a small staff, provide a top quality "values based" program, with an emphasis on outdoor programs and life skills.

Due to the unique demographics of the Calumet Council, a special program designed to serve the hardest to reach “at risk” youth, called Scoutreach, is used in lower income communities. In 2006, sixty six Scoutreach Cub Scout packs, Boy Scout troops and Venture Crews were active in nine different communities with over 2,600 members.

The Eagle Scout Award, the highest award a boy can earn in Scouting, was presented to 65 young men in 2006. These newest Eagles totaled over 3,000 combined service hours in the 65 different community service projects which they carried out as part of the Eagle Scout requirement.

The Council operates four districts: Crossroads, Nishnabec, Prairie Dunes, and Thunderbird. These service areas were formed in 2005 as a result of a restructuring to utilize volunteer resources better.

The Order of the Arrow is Scouting’s National Honor Society. The council's chapter is Michigamea Order of the Arrow Lodge number 110. It is youth-run and advised by adult volunteers. Michigamea lodge has over 600 active members. In 2007, the Lodge received The National Service Award for their work on the new Frank H. Betz firebowl. This annual award is only presented to eight lodges nationally.

The Council Executive board is made up of 45 local business and community leaders who guide to the year-round operation of the Council. The Council Key III is made up of President James K. Larson, Council Commissioner Albin Sporny III and Scout Executive Michael Creagh.

Crossroads of America Council

Headquartered in Indianapolis, Indiana, the Crossroads of America Council serves Scouts and Scouters in Central Indiana. It was initially formed when Central Indiana Council, Delaware County Council, Kikthawenund Council, and Whitewater Valley Council merged in 1972. Recently, Wabash Valley and Crossroads of America were merged to form the new Crossroads of America Council, serving 25 counties in Indiana, extending from the Illinois state line to the Ohio state line. As of the end of 2006, the Council served approximately 35,000 children thanks to 10,000 volunteer leaders. Crossroads of America Council

The Crossroads of America Council is served by Jaccos Towne Lodge #21, Order of the Arrow. It is also home to Firecrafter, a local Scouting service fraternity. Central Indiana Council was not home to a lodge of the Order of the Arrow until the merger of the councils in 1972. Scott Clabaugh is the current Scout Executive. The council maintains Scout offices in Indianapolis, Anderson, Hagerstown, Muncie, and Terre Haute.

The Crossroads of America Council has also served as home of the Crossroads of America Scout Band. Founded in 1917 by "Chief" F.O. Belzer as a camp band, this band has grown into a concert band that has traveled throughout the United States, Canada and England representing the Boy Scouts of America and the Crossroads of America Council for 91 years. The Bands annual summer tour takes it to as many scout camps as it can for the enjoyment of those scouts at camp. [15264]


The Crossroads of America Council currently operates seven camps:


  • Del-Mi District, serving Hamilton and Tipton Counties
  • Golden Eagle District, serving Delaware, northern Henry, and northern Randolph Counties
  • Iron Horse District, serving Hancock, southern Henry, Fayette, Rush, and Shelby Counties
  • Hou Koda District, serving western Marion County and Hendricks County
  • Northeast District, serving northeastern Marion County
  • North Star District, serving northwestern, central northern Marion, and a small section of southern Boone Counties
  • Old Trail District, serving southern Randolph, Wayne, Union, and Franklin Counties
  • Pathfinder District, serving southern Marion County and Johnson County
  • Pioneer District, serving eastern Marion County
  • Sakima District, serving Madison, and parts of Henry and Hancock Counties
  • Sugar Creek District, serving Boone, Montgomery, and southern Clinton Counties
  • T-Sun-Ga-Ni District, serving central Marion County
  • Wah-Bah-Shik-Ki District, serving Vermillion, Parke, and Putnam Counties

Hoosier Trails Council

Hoosier Trails Council



Hoosier Trails has two camps. Resident summer camp is hosted deep within the Hoosier National Forest at Maumee Scout Reservation in Normanmarker. Primitive camping is available at Camp Louis Ernst in Dupontmarker.

Nischa Chuppecat (#212) is Hoosier Trails' Order of the Arrow Lodge. It was founded in 1973 as the merger of Wazi Yata (#290) and So Aka Gha Gwa(#212) lodges. Nischa Chuppecat and So Aka Gha Gwa has hosted the National Order of the Arrow Conference (NOAC) at Indiana University ten times as of the summer of 2009, the most of any lodge in the nation.

La Salle Council

La Salle Council serves Scouts in Indiana and Michiganmarker. La Salle Council


  • Algonquian District
  • Dunes Moraine District
  • Pioneer Trails District
  • Potawatomi District

Lincoln Heritage Council

The George Rogers Clark Council was formed by Scouts of Clarkmarker, Floydmarker, Harrisonmarker, Scottmarker, and Washingtonmarker counties in 1927, and merged with Old Kentucky Home Council to form Trapper Trails Council , which serves Scouts in Kentuckymarker and Indiana.

John Work House and Mill Site|Tunnel Mill Scout Reservation

Tunnel Mill Scout Reservation is a Boy Scout camp just outside Charlestown, Indianamarker, owned by the Lincoln Heritage Council. In 1917 local Troop 3 decided to use the property as a summer camp, as it would for three summers. The George Rogers Clark Council shortly after 1927 bought Tunnel Mill from the Murphy family, who had bought the property the previous year but lost interest after a mill fire. In 1933 the three-sided wooden Pioneer Village cabins were built. In 1942 the Scoutmaster's Cabin and Evergreen cabins were completed. In 1950 the McDonald Bridge was completed across Fourteen Mile Creek. The camp saw its greatest use in the 1950s and 1960s, with 564 Scouts, the highest attendance ever, in 1960. In 1969 the swimming pool was built, to replace the creek, now-unsafe for swimming. By the 1980s the lessening attendance made the future of the camp uncertain. When the George Rogers Clark Council, which owned the property, merged with Old Kentucky Home Council, one of the conditions was that Tunnel Mill would not be closed. Since 1993 the camp has been used primarily by Cub Scouts and for winter camping. The property includes a cabin village, a swimming pool, and a dining hall built in 2000. The new dining hall replaced the one from the 1980s that once served as a steakhouse in Jeffersonvillemarker.

On November 6, 1996, Andy Campbell, a ranger serving as Tunnel Mill's caretaker, was shot to death by Roger Caldwell, "a diagnosed, paranoid schizophrenic" who trespassed onto the property while drunk. This was the first such incident in the history of Scouting. Campbell was able to drag himself to call 911. After police arrived on the scene to get information about the drunk from Campbell, they found Caldwell wandering on Indiana Highway 62. Caldwell was sentenced to 70 years in prison, with parole possible after 31 years.

Prairielands Council

Prairielands Council, previously the short-lived Illiana Council, has its headquarters in Champaign, Illinoismarker, and also serves Scouts in Indianamarker.

Sagamore Council

The Sagamore Council was founded in 1973 by a merger of the Three Rivers Council (Logansport, IN Office), Mesingomesia Council (Headquarters in Marion, IN) and the Harrison Trails (Headquarters Lafayette, IN). The council offices were eventually consolidated to Kokomo, Indiana. The camp properties of "Green Hills" was sold. Green Hills was south and west of Lafayette, IN. Camp Cary, Lafayette, IN was still used as a cub day camp. Camp Buffalo, near Buffalo, IN (north and east of Indiana Beach) was the now central camp. Mesingomesia's Camp Crossland near Columbia City, Indiana was sold to the Indiana Department of Natural Resources and is now called the Denison Property (named after DNR employee, not a scouter). It is managed through the Tri-County Fish and Wildlife.

A few things make Sagamore Council Unique:

1. Purdue University hosts several National Order of the Arrow Conferences.2. Weaver Popcorn (Trail's End Popcorn) is manufactured/packaged in Van Buren, Indiana.

3. The former military base Grissom provided several retired servicemen who served in various capacities (ie. LTC Hal Ivy).

4. Wabash, Indiana Scout Lincoln Pilgrimage is one of the longest scout presidential day events in Scouting. Its patches are highly sought after.

5. In the council, then-governor (Later president) William Henry Harrison defeated a large band of Indians at the Battle of Tippecanoe. Harrison was elected on the campaign phrase "Tippecanoe and Tyler too).

6. George O. Crossland, a Scout Executive, served the priorMesingomesia Council. He went on to other more notable Scouting functions including creating an honorary that preceded the Order of the Arrow.

  • Arrowhead District
  • Big One District
  • Chief Logan District
  • Meshingomesia District
  • Tecumseh District

Girl Scouting in Indiana

There are 8 Girl Scout councils in Indiana though only 5 have their headquarters in the state.

On Aug. 26, 2006, Girl Scouts of the USA’s (GSUSA) national board of directors voted to endorse a plan to realign 312 councils into 109 high-capacity, community-based councils. The new structure will make the most effective use of resources to better serve the local community and create more opportunities in Girl Scouting for even more girls. Girl Scouts of Central Indiana was the first Girl Scout council in the nation to complete the merger process.

Girl Scouts of Central Indiana

Formed by the merger of Girl Scouts of Hoosier Capital Council, Covered Bridge Girl Scout Council, Girl Scouts of Treaty Line Council, Girl Scouts of Sycamore Council, and Girl Scouts of Wapephani Council.

Girl Scouts of Central Indiana serves over 40,000 girls in 33 counties in Central Indiana.Council headquarters isIndianapolis, Indiana but service centers remain in cities that were the headquarters of former councils

Web Site:

Camps and cabins:

Girl Scouts of Greater Chicago and Northwest Indiana

See Scouting in Illinois for more information. The former Scouts of The Calumet Council and Drifting Dunes Girl Scout Council became part of this council.

Girl Scouts of Kentuckiana

See Scouting in Kentucky for more information. Serves many counties in southern Indiana

Girl Scouts of Northern Indiana-Michiana

This is a new council includes more than 18.240 Girl Scouts in northern Indiana (Adamsmarker,Allenmarker,Cassmarker,DeKalbmarker,Elkhartmarker,Fultonmarker,Huntingtonmarker,Kosciuskomarker,LaGrangemarker,LaPorte,Marshallmarker,Miamimarker,Noblemarker,Pulaskimarker,St. Josephmarker,Starkemarker,Steubenmarker,Wabashmarker,Wellsmarker, andWhitleymarker) and two counties, Berienmarker and Cassmarker, in southwest Michigan.

Formed by the merger of Indiana Lakeland Girl Scout Council, Girl Scouts of Limberlost Council, Girl Scouts of Singing Sands Council (except for a part that joined Girl Scouts Heart of Michigan), and Girl Scouts of Tribal Trails Council.



Girl Scouts of River Bluffs Council

Headquarters is Glen Carbon, Illinois


Girl Scouts of Western Ohio

Headquarters is Cincinnati, Ohio


See Scouting in Ohio for more information

Girl Scouts of Raintree Council

Headquarters is Evansville, Indianamarker

website is

Located in south-west Indiana and also a small part of Illinois. It was formed after a previous realignment in September 1957. Camps are Camp Koch in Cannelton, Indianamarker, Carmi Little House in Carmi, Indiana, and Camp Three Lakes. Camp Koch has a sycamore that is a "moon tree"; as a seed it was on the Apollo 14 mission to the moon.[15265][15266]

It serves Vanderburgh, Warrick, Spencer, Perry, Posey, Gibson, Martin, Pike, Daviess, and Dubois Counties in Indiana and White County in Illinois.

Girl Scouts of Tulip Trace Council

Tulip Trace is in the process of dissolving

, with the former area being covered by the Girl Scouts of Central Indiana and the Girl Scouts of Kentuckiana.

Headquarters is Bloomington, Indiana

website is

It serves Bartholomew, Brown, Decatur, Greene, Jackson, Jennings,Johnson, Lawrence, Monroe, Orange, Owen, Scott and Sullivan countiesand some of Morgan county.

See also


  1. Tunnel Mill: the story of an historical grist mill and an historic Boy Scout camp by Gary D. Purlee (2005)
  2. Purlee 2005

External links

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