Croatan Lodge 117 History – the 1950’s
Less is known about Lodge leadership and activities during the 1950's.
Stratton Murrell became Lodge Chief in 1950. He led some members of the Lodge on an exciting 200-mile canoe trip down the Tar River.
In 1952 Jack Mentus took over the position of Lodge Chief. He served on the Camp Charles staff for a few years and he was from New Bern. Other Lodge Officers include Vice Chief Johnny Stallings from Wilson, Treasurer Lee Denny from Wilson, and Secretary Charles Duffy from New Bern. The Lodge became divided into three areas. Area One covered Wilson, Nash, Rocky Mount and Edgecombe Districts. Ed Griffin from Nashville was the Chief and Charles Boone from Rocky Mount was the Secretary. Area Two covered Halifax, Roanoke Chowan, Wasmaty, and Pitt Districts. The Chief was Warren Wayne from Roanoke Rapids and Jimmy White from Colerain was the Secretary. Area Three covered the Cra-Ja-Pam, Contentnea, Onslow, Carteret, and Beaufort-Hyde Districts. The Chief was Roy Fagan from New Bern and the Secretary was Jimmy Willis from Morehead.
The 1952 Lodge Chief is not known. Bill Wall became the first Vigil Honor recipient of Croatan Lodge during this year at the 6-A Area Conference. Lester Dollar served as the Lodge Staff Adviser from 1952 until 1955.
The 1953 Lodge Chief was Charles Duffy from New Bern. He served on camp staff at both Camp Charles and Camp Croatan. The first Lodge pocket patch was issued this year. The patch was in the shape of an arrowhead and depicted a deer jumping toward the left within a blue circle representing brotherhood and a red arrow faced to the right crossing over the deer representing purpose. The arrowhead was issued with a one per life restriction.
The Lodge Chief for 1954 was James Willis of Morehead. The Lodge Chief in 1955 was Steve Farrish from Ayden. The Lodge Secretary during this same year was Richard Verone. Carl Knott served as the Lodge Staff Adviser from 1955 until 1959.
In 1956 Ed Tyndall of New Bern took over as the Lodge Chief. In 1957 Floyd "Flossie" Bryan of Ahoskie was Lodge Chief. He also served a few years on the Camp Charles Staff. The Lodge Secretary in 1956 was Eddie Stallings and in 1957 was Alex Warren. The now Dr. Stratton Murrell served as the Lodge Lay Adviser from 1957 until 1964.
Robert Rhodes from Kinston was Lodge Chief in 1958.
Tommy Gray from Ahoskie was Lodge Chief in 1959. During this period the Lodge was involved with sectional conferences. The Lodge actually hosted the 1955 6-A Conference at Camp Croatan near New Bern. Ed Tyndall served as the 6-A Area Chief. Sectional activity increased in the years after hosting the 1955 6-A Conference.
At the community level, the Lodge played an important role in a Wilson Scout Exposition held in 1959. Croatan Lodge presented a dramatization of the Legend of the Order of the Arrow which was directed by Stratton Murrell. Richard Auger and Tommy Gray organized the Lodge's involvement in the Scout Exposition. The first Fall Fellowship was held at Camp Charles during, this year.
The first Lodge neckerchief was issued in 1959. The neckerchief was white with red letters and had a place reserved for the Lodge arrowhead to be sewn onto the neckerchief. The restriction was one per life.
Submitted by Lodge Editor Wayne Miller
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