Girl Scout Camp Andree Clark -
The Early Years
C.A.C. Pin - enlarged
Camp Andree Clark pin
One of three know versions of the staged photographs of Ex-Senator William Clark handing deed of the property to Mrs. Ann Hyde Clark Choate, President of the Girl Scouts, in the New York City Girl Scout office.
Camp Andree Clack was the "darling" of Girl Scout camps, located in New York, only 35 miles from New York City, the headquarters of Girl Scouting AND the major newspapers. The camp was often mentioned and photographed for publication.
Sometimes simply known as Camp Andree, was the first, and now only,
national Girl Scout camp. 135 acres of prime New York land near Briarcliff, NY was donated in 1920 by William Clark (millionaire ex-Senator) to Girl Scouts, Inc. in memory of his daughter, Lillian Amelia Andree Clark (1902-1919). Located on Chappaqua Road, across the street from the Girl Scouts' Edith Macy Conference Center, it is now part of the MACY complex.
The early days of camp life at Camp Andree Clark were experimental. Girl Scouts who were chosen to attend experienced new methods of participating in camping, such as how much adult supervision was required?, how much guidance was needed in planning activities?, how do girls interact with other girls in a camp setting? Girl Scouting was ahead of it's time in studying girls and camp life.
It appears that the area was already an established camp when it was donated, but it was still a primitive camp site. In a 1922 newspaper article, the camp was valued at $50,000.
Here's a newspaper photo of the FIRST Girl Scout Troop to camp at Camp Andree, in June 1921. These girls are all from Brookline, MA. I'm sure it doesn't hurt that their leader was also the state commissioner.
This two Girl Scouts shown here, Isolde (left) and Alma (center) spent hours beating back a forest fire with just 4 other people. Both Girl Scouts were singed and blistered afterwards.
Postcards from the era
An enduring symbol of the camp is the distinctive "dinner bell"
A 21-gun salute was given "By the girls"
President Warren G. Harding died in office August 2, 1932
In the early days of Girl Scout camping earning your "letter" was an important right of passage and a high mark of your camp skills - like earning your letter in sports. Camp "letters" are hard to find.
From this article from 1924:
Camp Andree Clark's camp letter was a green "A" and was meant to be worn on a white sweater.
In an era when girls going camping was a radical idea, the public needed reassurance that Girl Scouting was not raising a bunch of Amazons.
Click on the diary to read Ruth Alden Clark's camp diary from 1928
Girl Scout campers learning the art of tapping Maple trees and simmering down the sap into syrup. 1931
By the 1930's Camp Andree Clark was well established in the Girl Scouting world as "the" camping site. Soon it was hosting national and international camping events. It even had it's own Camp Andree uniform!
The highlight of the 1930's camping era was the 1937 Silver Jubilee Camp. It's interesting to read the newspapers of the time and see how the camp was being shown to the public (below)
A silver tone Committee/Associates Pin
with SJC 1937
engraved at the bottom
was the official pin for the Silver Jubilee Camp.
Image: the Altvaters
These two postcards show "The Frog" of Lake Kinderoga on Camp Andree Clark.
Is it still there?