Talk Given on Radio Station KBWB
I was unpacking or going through some of my old Scout Stuff the other day and ran across this -- so had to rehash the thing with Lucy (Guy Quirl's wife), and we both had a good laugh -- as she remembered that I talked too loud and didn't sound like me, over the Radio -- I remember I was scared to death as I think it was the first time I had ever been on the Air -- altho I'm up in the "Air" most of the time--
Thought you might like to see it -- I wonder where Connie Mack Hood is now and what he might be doing -- I sometimes get to thinking about all the scouts and wonder where they are etc.
I remember the time when you took me from Camp Billy Gibbons on a trip up through the "Maneuver Area" it was dark as pitch and when we got up there -- you turned the lights out -- and just kept driving -- I couldn't see the road, but I had confidence in you -- you said you could. You were looking for headlighters -- we didn't find anyone and so circled round about and went on back to Camp -- I think you were to talk to the boys the next morning.
Camp Billy Gibbons 1944
By John Wood, Game Warden and Guy Quirl, Scout Executive
Introductory remarks by John Wood, Game Warden --------
W. Mr. Quirl can you give us a description of Camp Billy Gibbons?
Q. Camp Billy Gibbons is located 12 miles south of the town of Richland Springs in San Saba County - at the mouth of spring fed Brady Creek, on the San Saba River. the camp proper is on the 11,000 acre ranch belonging to Mr. Jake Hammond of Dallas. The Scouts also have hiking and camping privileges on the Gibbons ranch which has more than 40,000 acres with cedar, and fine cattle roaming over hills and valleys.
W. Mr. Quirl what about Wild Life at Camp Billy Gibbons?
Q. Many Scouts see their first wild Turkey and Deer at Camp -- small animals and birds are plentiful --
W. What about Fishing?
Q. We estimated after camp, that the scouts had caught between 250 and 300 pounds of fish last year - the Scout cleans the fish then take it to the cook and it is placed on his table at meal time. Some tables had fish several times last camp, and we expect the same thing to happen this year.
W. Well Mr. Quirl can you tell us something bout the improvements at Camp Billy Gibbons?
Q. Yes Mr. Wood -- our improvements are few -- we have one large mess hall - this mess hall will seat 350 scouts at one time -- the tables are built so that eight scouts eat at a table. The kitchen is equipped with a large hotel rang stove, ice vault, and a 200 lb. capacity refrigerator. There is also a nice store room with concrete floor -- The mess hall has just had a concrete floor placed in it by a group of scouts from Stephens, Eastland and Brown Counties. We have an old shack that we use for headquarters and the canteen. We hope that will be able to have a better building for this next year. As for sleeping quarters the Scouts use tents each troop furnishes their own tents -- a great many have earned money this year and have their tents all ready to take with them on opening day. Most scouts just put their cots out in the open and place their mosquito bar over them and sleep out under the stars - using the tents only when it rains -- and it does rain some time at Camp Billy Gibbons -- nights have been delightful -- scouts using a light cover before morning that are now in camp.
W. Well Mr. Quirl what about the food in camp?
Q. The food is not fancy but good wholesome food and is prepared by professional cooks -- maybe I should read you the menu for the first meal -- they all won't be that good but they will carry a balanced diet through the week -- Next Sunday at noon we will have -- Steak with white gravy; mashed potatoes; buttered peas and carrots; sliced tomatoes; Ice Tea; loaf bread; Ice cream & cookies.
W. Now that we have the food situation straighten out and it certainly sounds like those scouts are in for a lot of good eats, what can you tell us of the program -- what will the scout do --
Q. The program at camp is flexible one -- we are fortunate this year in having Mr. Homer Tudor, formerly Field Scout Executive for the Comanche Trail Council, to be in charge of the Water Front Program -- where the scout will be able to pass his swimming tests -- the non swimmer will be taught to swim -- life saving and boating will be given -
Mr. H. H. Gilliam, Field representative for the American Red Cross will be in camp and conduct an instructors course for leaders -- Guy T. Smith, Assistant Scout Executive will be in charge of the program in general.
Scouting subjects will be handled by various Scoutmasters that are experts in this particular line --
Scouts will not forget the Sunday services that are held early Sunday morning and at night by the Camp Fire.
Week night camp fire will be held with Indian lore and story telling -- Hiking - fishing - swimming - exploring - stalking wild life - renewing and making new friends will be the Scouts opportunity at Camp Billy Gibbons --
W. That makes me remember Mr. Quirl when I was there as a Scout -- those are some of my fondest memories -- you will remember that I was the mule skinner when we built the Dam on Brady Creek --
Q. Yes I do remember and I could tell the audience many funny experiences that happen at that time too -- if we had time.
W. How many Scouts are you expecting this year?
Q. We have now in the office an estimate of 260 the first week and about 225 the second week -- however I think the second week will run very close to the first --
W. Who is this young man you have here with you Mr. Quirl?
Q. Mr. Wood this is Jr. A.S.M. Connie Mack Hood, of Troop 17, Breckenridge, he is on his way to camp now -- maybe you should like to ask him some questions and let me rest?
W. Connie - we're glad to have you with us this evening - how many years have you attended camp?
H. Thank you Mr. Wood I'm glad to be here - this will make my fourth year.
W. Well Connie tell us some of the things you have enjoyed and gained from being a camper at Camp Billy Gibbons.
H. That Mr. Wood is a very hard question to answer - as there are so many - one of the interesting things a scout will find at camp is the Council Ring Ceremonies - we have a every night. I like the ceremonies because they bring us in communication with the first real camper -- the American Indians. We sit around a fire while some of our fellow campers dressed to portray the red man bring us some of the old Indian ceremonies, dances, stories, and songs. These are really a high light.
W. Tell us did you learn to swim at camp?
H. Yes I did -- and
I have learned many other camp crafts and I do appreciate having the opportunity
of being a member of such a swell bunch of Scouts.
Note: Connie Mack Hood later became the first Lodge Chief of the Otena Lodge, Order of the Arrow and was involved with the Kunieh Society at the old Camp Billy Gibbons.