2014 marks the 90th birthday of Camp Timber Ridge in Mableton, GA! Now, that’s a lot of camping!
In October of 1924, the Civitan Club of Atlanta deeded 39.5 acres of land in Mableton, 12 miles west of today’s Metro Atlanta, to the Girl Scouts of Atlanta and then in November of that same year an elaborate opening ceremony was held. The establishment of the camp was largely due to the help of Mrs. Albert Thornton, who gifted $1,000 (big money back then!) for a central dining hall and recreation hall to be built on the property. The first camping season was in the summer of 1925 between June 22 and August 8 and the original buildings on the site included the office, infirmary, nature hut, art hut, rest hut, and of course, the tents!
Camp Civitania was renamed Timber Ridge in 1953 and then in 1971 the Timber Ridge Environmental Center was born. The Timber Ridge Environmental Center, known as TREC, was made up of 30 acres of wooded land, designed to teach about the history of the land as well as its use and to demonstrate natural forces at work.
Camp Timber Ridge has grown over the years and now consists of over 220 acres of wooded land (both hardwood and pine forests), natural streams and even a bamboo forest! During the summer, girls can choose between day camps or sleepaway camps, platform tents or cabins. Troops can also reserve a campsite at any time during the year for a troop bonding weekend!
Today, Camp Timber Ridge remains one of the largest girls’ camps in the South still in operation!
It’s time for Treats and Keeps! The Girl Scouts of Greater Atlanta’s fall fundraiser is in full swing! As of September 2, you can now buy chocolates, nuts, magazines, and photo keepsakes from your local Atlanta area Girl Scouts.
Like the cookies, different areas of the country are supplied by different companies. For example, if Hot Cajun Crunch isn’t on an order form in one area of the country, then instead, there’s likely to be items like Island Fruit Mix, Peanut Brittle, or Mint Trefoils. Also, some councils offer magazine subscriptions while others are featuring photo keepsakes this year too.
As well as their annual fall fundraising, Girl Scouts have always been most well known for their annual cookie sale in the early spring of each year. But did you know that for decades now there have always been various sales year-round? For instance, during World War II, Girl Scouts sold war bonds (at no profit for GSUSA) to support the war effort here on the homefront. Also during WWII, they sold calendars instead of cookies because of the nationwide rationing of flour and sugar. To this day, calendars continue to be sold annually, though no longer in place of the beloved cookies.
Recently, I found an image online of this wonderful vintage poster of a Girl Scouts salted nut sale. It looks like it is from either the 1940s or 1950s era. I would love to find more information about this poster! If anyone out there has any info, please leave a comment or message us at GirlScoutArchivesAtlanta@gmail.com!
Labor Day was celebrated for the first time in New York City in 1882. It began as a state holiday, getting voted in by individual states, but gained popularity and was voted a national holiday by Congress in 1894.
Labor Day celebrates the achievements of the American work force with a national day off on the first Monday in September.
A time for relaxation with family and friends, Labor Day is a popular time for special events and festivals throughout the country such as cooking out, camping, and parades!
Labor Day is also a chance to bid farewell to summer with a long weekend, sometimes spent camping or swimming. Pictured below are Girl Scouts all decked out in their 1920s era bathing costumes, a far cry from the bathing suits of today!
What are your plans this Labor Day weekend? Here in the Greater Atlanta Area there are tons of events and festivals happening all weekend long. Click here to browse some of the activities that are going on, and keep your eye our for Girl Scouts while you’re out and about!
One of the perks of volunteering at the Girl Scouts of Greater Atlanta Archives is to see all the pieces of history that come in to stay. We recently received this acquisition from a former Girl Scout, and the staff were excited because we did not have this bag in our collection. We had a matching mess kit, as seen below, that was produced around the same time. You can find the plaid mess kit available online in many places, but a search for the larger matching bag is not quite as easy.
This plaid bag first appeared in the 1954 Girl Scout Equipment Catalog, and was marketed as a lunch bag. Girls would have used this at camp to carry their mess kit and canteen, or other items that might be useful. When not at camp, the Girl Scout could use it to carry her handbook and writing material. These types of bags are still popular with Girl Scouts today.