On September 24, 1966, four members of the Burton family, Stephen Winfred Burton, Patricia Lynn Burton, Susan Jane Burton, and Mrs. Melva Sue Burton, were baptized in Ten Mile Creek by Elder M. H. Rossier, becoming members of the Malvern SDA Church. Mrs. Burton had become a Seventh-day Adventist a few years before this but she became lax in church attendance and discouragement followed. In 1960, she, with her husband, Winfred, and oldest daughter, Susan, joined a Mormon church. Mrs. Burton relates that this move was against her better judgment, but it was the first time her husband, Winfred, had shown any interest in a church so it seemed best for them at that time. Soon she realized that she couldn’t allow her children to be taught untruths, and each week when they would come home from church, she would explain the right way to them (Rossier, 1966). Mrs. Burton finally decided it would be better to join the Seventh-day Adventist church in spite of her husband’s lack of interest in it. Twenty-four years later, on December 29, 1990, Winfred was also baptized into the Seventh-day Adventist church.
The first efforts to establish a church in Lafayette were in 1969 and 1970, by Pastor and Mrs. Wallace Burns and Mr. and Mrs. L. E. Scoggins, as literature evangelists. In this strong Catholic community which Seventh-day Adventists had never been able to penetrate there was a major breakthrough that got the attention of high officials. In conjunction with a federation (now Adventist Community Services) meeting there, the Adventist group put on a mass-feeding demonstration at noon, at which time they fed more than 300 people in less than ten minutes. Afterward, they had a panel discussion with the Red Cross, Civil Defense, fire department, and city officials giving them information on what their agencies do and how Adventist could better cooperate in times of disaster. With newspaper and television coverage of the event, before the day was over the entire city knew of the community service work of Seventh-day Adventists (Voss, 1969).
Lafayette Company Organized in 1974
In 1973, a two-and-three-quarters-acre plot was purchased on which to build a church. Adventists living in the city at that time were a veterinarian and his wife, a male nurse and his family, a layman and his wife from California, and the pastor of the district, Keith McNabb and his family. Soon a couple from New Orleans joined them (McKnabb, 1973). The group was meeting in the Grace Lutheran church. On July 13, 1974, a covered-dish supper was held to celebrate their recent organization as the Lafayette company. About fifty members and visitors came to join the celebration (McKnabb, 1974).
It Takes Teamwork
In late 1974, the conference sent their dark county* team, Pastor Eugene Ryan and Tom Patzer to Lafayette as literature evangelists, determined to build a strong church in that city (Elder, 1975). They were assisted by students from Ozark Academy (now Ozark Adventist Academy) and Southwestern Union College (now Southwestern Adventist University) in conducting a Vacation Bible School. In the fall of 1975, an evangelistic team of Cline Johnson and Bill Tucker held a series in the Gabriel room of the Travelodge Motel. With an average attendance of 100 nightly and approximately forty non-Seventh-day Adventists the meetings continued for four weeks, with interests followed up by Elder Ryan (Record, 1976a).
A New Church in 1976
Early in 1976, the Lafayette members began building a church on their property just off Highway 167 on Rena Drive. The new church seated 125 with space for Sabbath school rooms and a fellowship hall (Griffin, 1976).
Lafayette Church Organized in 1976
On the afternoon of September 4, 1976, Elder Haskell officiated in the organization of the Lafayette church with thirty-three charter members. The nominating committee did a portion of its work during lunch, then presented a list of names for the principle offices and these were voted by the church members (Jackson, 1976).
*A dark county was an area where no active Adventist work was being done.
(1976a, Jan. 24). Southwestern Union Record, p. 8.
In 1946 a small home church school was being taught in Harrison by Mrs. Evelyn Winters. A few years later, in 1952 the Harrison church was ready to build their first church and the members included a classroom in the building. The Harrison school opened in 1960, closed in 1963, reopened for the 1965-1966 school year, and reopened again in 1968 (Report, 1959-1980). For the next few years, some of the teachers included Mrs. James Madison, Addie Lewis, Linda Malmede, and Lauel Burton. In the late 1960s, because of an increase in the number of students, the room in the church was no longer adequate so a school was built on property donated by Frank Cox, outside of Harrison in the White Oak community. Roby and Charles Hightower were the teachers at that time (History, 1981).
A Country School in 1974
Following the Hightowers, teachers included Richard Garver, Dale Williams, Dorothy Cox, Dr. Edwards, and Dr. Harlyn Blake. Dr. Blake bought a bus and his wife, Karol, transported the children to and from the school, as well as serving as an assistant teacher. A new school out in the country was completed by the 1974-1975 school year. During that time, Wilma Ritchey was in charge of the school library and Clarence Quarnstrom provided employment for some of the older students, packaging honey and making frames for his hives. From 1961 to 1978, Marion Allen Bearden was connected with the school, teaching much of the time, sometimes the entire term, other times part of the term, filling in, or as an assistant or as a substitute (History, 1981).
A New School in 1981
It became more and more difficult to have a church school so far out in the country, so after building a new church at Capps, a trailer house was purchased and converted into a school for two years. The teachers during that time were Betty Strout, Connie Hall, and Suzanne Boyer. Mr. Quarnstrom, Mr. Lauer and his family, the Allen family, and James Lanning helped in many other ways as well. Because of their dedication and work, a new school was built in 1981, with Arlin Monroe as the teacher (History, 1981). The school had abundant playground space, a large all-purpose room, kitchen, two restrooms and a classroom. An addition to the facility in 1997 gave additional classroom space, a separate library, a computer room, and a work area for the teacher’s aide (Hevener, 1998).
(1959-1980). Teacher’s Opening Report. Shreveport, LA: Arkansas-Louisiana Conference of SDA.
(1981). History of Harrison church and school. Provided by Patti Castellano. Unpublished.
Hevener, Don. (1998, Mar. 1). Southwestern Union Record, p. 5.
In November 1906, Elder Griffin baptized a few people and organized a church of eight members at Lucky, Arkansas. The group had already built a little church in which they had begun meeting although it was not quite finished (Griffin, 1906). Almost immediately they realized they needed a church school for their children (McCoy, 1907). From 1907 to 1910, they had such short school years that the school was not reported in the SDA Yearbook for those years. For the 1910-1911 school year they planned to have a much longer and better year (McCoy, 1910), and they did, with twenty-six students taught by Dewey Kinzer.
Around this time, the Jim and Genie (McConnell) Wilson family moved to this area with their seven children. Their concern had been to find and live near a church school. James, the oldest son, wrote, “There we found a home on a small farm of 60 acres. It was fairly level and not too rocky. There we grew corn and oats and peanuts for feed and cane for molasses. All kinds of garden truck to feed the family. Cows too, of course, for milk and butter. There were several acres in cultivation and we cleared some more. A crop that was new to us was cotton but we soon learned how to do that one, too. It was our principal money crop even though the price was disappointing sometimes….But that church school, how we loved it! Even though it was 2 miles from our home. We didn’t mind the walk. Took a lunch with us, of course. It was here that we began to prepare for some future line of service – teaching, preaching, colporteur work, mission service in some part of the world field. Our search for a church school was ended” (Wilson, n.d.)
The little community of Lucky no longer exists, but by 1931 the school became known as the Bonnerdale school (Hopkins, 1931).
A New School in 1937
The 1937 school year began in a newly built three-room school for the Bonnerdale students (Pound, 1937). In 1942, they went to eleven grades. Edith Ewing was the lower grade teacher and Mr. and Mrs. W. M. Ladd taught the upper grades (Pannell, 1942). The grade levels taught fluctuated with the needs of students.
A New School in 1980
At the end of 1976, Irvin and Evea J. Bainum donated property for new church and school. The school and Ewing Auditorium were built first. The church congregation met in the new auditorium for the first time on December 22, 1979 (Record, 1979). The 1980-1981 school year opened in the new school building which included the auditorium/gymnasium, a $150,000 gift from Irvin and Evea Bainum in memory of Evea’s parents, Albert and Florence Ewing (Shain, 1980). That school year marked the seventy-third year of continuous operation for the school. Enrollment was as low as eight students one year and as high as thirty-one students. The school and Ewing Auditorium were built first. The new school was named Florence Ewing Junior Academy, and in 2010 shortened to Ewing Adventist Junior Academy (Simpson, 2010).
(1976, Dec. 17). Minutes of the Board of Trustees of the Arkansas Conference Association. Shreveport, LA: Arkansas-Louisiana Conference of SDA.
(1979, Dec. 13). Southwestern Union Record, p. 12F.
(2010, Aug. 11). Ewing Adventist Jr Academy. Retrieved from eadventist.net.
Griffin, H. Clay. (1906, Nov. 13). Southwestern Union Record, p. 2.
Hopkins, E. B. (1931, May 6). Ibid., p. 3.
McCoy, Ava L. (1907, Feb. 26). Ibid., p. 2.
Ibid. (1910, Oct. 11). p. 3.
Pannell, G. C. (1942, Jul. 29). Ibid., p. 1.
Pound, I. C. (1937, Sep. 22). Ibid., p. 8.
Shain, Jacquelyn. (1980, Oct. 2). Ibid., pp. 4, 5.
Wilson, James Orville. (No Date). An Ordinary Family Serves Humanity, pp. 20, 28.
In 1902, Edward Louis Pickney began canvassing in Pocahontas, returning again in 1904. Pickney reported that there were a lot of Catholics. They were very kind and bought a few small books but would not buy Bible Readings for the Home Circle unless their priest would recommend it (Pickney, 1904). In 1908, Mr. Comstock also canvassed Pocahontas, reporting good success (Oppy, 1908).
Story of Two Colporteurs
Edward Pickney wrote to the Arkansas Conference headquarters telling of his and his friend, W. A. Heathcote’s, experiences one day while they were canvassing around Pocahontas and into Sharp County. At the end of a week they started for home, but there had been a heavy rainfall on the previous day. When they reached the creek they found the foot bridge had washed away, so they took off their shoes and waded through. They did not know what the temperature was, but it was very cold. Then they came across a town quarantined on account of the smallpox. They went around that and found that the river had flooded and they had to wade through water up to their knees. They finally came to a stand still. Then a man came along with a boat and took them across to the hills. They reached home about 9:00 p.m., having walked about thirty-five miles that day. They reported that they were of good courage and praised the Lord for His care, and in spite of their experience, “were anxious to continue scattering the printed pages of truth amongst the people” (Field, 1903).
The Work Continues
In 1939, the Clide L. Wickwire family moved from Colorado Springs to Pocahontas and were the first Seventh-day Adventists living there. In their hearts was a dream of an active church and school. With the passing of the years God blessed Pearl Wickwire’s ceaseless efforts and the little group of Adventists grew (Morton, 1955). By 1943, there was a small group of scattered believers who were very faithful in their Sabbath school attendance and missionary work. On June 13, 1943, Elder and Mrs. Herbert Hewitt and Charles Beeler held tent meetings in Pocahontas. Attendance was fair, but continued to increase, so the group attending Sabbath school started a building fund on June 26, in preparation for building a church in Pocahontas (Beeler, 1943).
Pocahontas Church Organized in 1946
Elder Herbert Hewitt and Leon Strickland organized a new church at Pocahontas on Sabbath, August 17, 1946. Several families had recently moved to Pocahontas and three new members were baptized the day of the organization, making a church of nineteen members (Wells, 1946). By 1947 the members had, purchased a lot for a new church building (Minutes, 1947).
A New Church in 1950
By the end of October 1948, excavating for a new church building had been completed. Most of the lumber for building was on hand, the sand for the concrete foundation was on the lot and the order in for cement, which was a little hard to get. They were delayed by a car accident and illness of the contractor, but things eventually came together and they were ready to build (Marshall, 1948). On Sabbath, April 30, 1949, the members met for the first time in their new church. In February 1950, the Pocahontas church had fully completed the main auditorium to their church. When the auditorium was completed, a porch and vestibule were added (Kretz, 1950). C. L. Beason, assisted by one of our church school teachers, Chester Jordon, and their wives began a series of meetings in a large tent in Pocahontas, Sunday night, July 18, 1954. The tent was pitched on the front of the church lot. Everyone knew it was a Seventh-day Adventist meeting, yet nearly one hundred attended the opening meeting (Record, 1954). The Pocahontas church was dedicated on Sabbath, September 5, 1958 (Evans, 1959).
(1947, Mar. 20). Executive Committee Minutes. Shreveport, LA: Arkansas-Louisiana Conference of SDA.
(1954, Jul. 28). Southwestern Union Record, p. 4.
Ancestry Family Trees. (2017, Apr. 30). Edward Louis Pickney. Retrieved from ancestry.com.
Beeler, Charles R. (1943, Jul. 7). Southwestern Union Record, p. 4.
The first services of the North Little Rock church were held on November 28, 1970, with thirty-nine present. The congregation was formally organized on January 23, 1971, and met through the years in a little building which the congregation purchased from the Jehovah Witnesses during the time Pastor Ernest Clark was the district pastor (Minutes, 1971). All activity stopped while the freight train went past, which was right as the 11 o’clock service began each week.
Sylvan Hills sDA Church
In 1976, the North Little Rock church decided to move out — not only to a more desirable building, but also farther out from the North Little Rock area into the Sylvan Hills Addition of the community of Sherwood. George Buchanan, local elder, said, “We were led to this land. Nothing was here except trees and one billy goat.” Ground was broken May 8, 1977, for the new church and they began building. Jack Williams, a new member in the fall of 1976, suggested the new name of the church, Sylvan Hills Seventh-day Adventist Church (Record, 1977). A brick-veneer building with seating capacity of approximately 250 was designed and built by an Adventist contractor, Emmet Head. In addition to several Sabbath school classrooms housed on the lower area of the building, an additional 1,400 square feet of the building was set aside to function as a community service center to serve the surrounding area of Arkansas. The members began to worship in their new church in November 1977, and the official opening took place on December 3, 1977 (Kostenko, 1978). The mortgage was paid in December 1984 and the church was dedicated the following summer.
A New Church in 2001
In March 1995, the Sylvan Hills church sold their property to the Northside Presbyterian church and were looking for a new piece of property. In 1998, they purchased land on Highway 107 in Jacksonville and around this time changed the name back to North Little Rock church. By 2000, the building plans and loans were in place and voted so they could begin the building project. They held their grand opening on December 15, 2001 (Newsletter, 2001).
Sherwood Community Church
At the end of 2011, the church members voted to change the name of their church to Sherwood Seventh-day Adventist Community Church (Mackay, 2012).
Rex Everett Callicott was born in Lane, Tennessee, on January 23, 1896, to Leonidas and Fannie Fern Callicott. He was the seventh of eight children — five girls and three boys. His family moved to Texas when he was still a young boy. Rex met Maudine Curtis at Wills Point, Texas, and they married on September 21, 1922 (Ancestry, 2019). He began baking cookies in the backyard of his Dallas home the following year. By the end of the year, it was a thriving business that developed into a million-dollar industry by the time he retired as chairman in 1962 (Advocate, 1987).
Jack’s Cookie Corporation
Around 1925 Rex and Maudine moved to Memphis, Tennessee, where their two children were born. After 1935 the family moved to Houston where Rex opened a Jack’s cookie plant. By 1941, the Callicotts were living in Baton Rouge, Louisiana (Ancestry, 2019). Rex consolidated his operations into three large plants located in Charlotte, North Carolina; Mobile, Alabama; and Baton Rouge. During a bleak business period during World War II, Rex stopped making his vanilla wafers, which was his best selling cookie. The sugar shortage threatened to cause a substandard dough and he decided it was better to discontinue production than lower the quality. The vanilla wafer was the first cookie back on the market after the sugar shortage ended (Advocate, 1987).
Photos courtesy of the Arkansas-Louisiana conference
The RX Bar Ranch
During his early years in Texas, Rex had developed an interest in cattle ranching that carried over even into his retirement years. He became a member of both the Louisiana and the Texas Cattlemen’s Association (Advocate, 1987). In 1944 he purchased a 6,300-acre ranch in Pointe Coupee and West Baton Rouge parishes along the Mississippi River. Rex ran 3,500 head of Angus and Brangus cattle, along with thirty head of registered quarter horses, on the RX Bar Ranch. Using effective pastureland management led to improvement of his cattle herds creating a very successful business (Sapp, 1980). His ranch was his love and he would go every day during the week, if possible. “He loved to make his daily tour, talk with his ranch hands, or deliver supplies. When he drove up on the levee there was a view…of the cattle grazing and the birds on wing. It was breathtaking” (Leach, 1987).
Contributions for Young People
Rex became a well-known businessman in the south and in the Seventh-day Adventist church. He served on many boards and committees, including the Southwestern Adventist College (now University) board, the Arkansas-Louisiana Conference committee and the Union committee over the years. He was instrumental in getting the Spanish Voice of Prophecy to begin broadcasting in New Orleans in February 1971. He had a strong interest in helping young people get a Christian education and many young people received financial assistance through his generosity. One of his favorite ways to help was the Youth Action Line, operated by B. E. Leach, Wayne Shepherd, and Dick Bendall. Rex was the chief source of income for this life-line that young people could call when they needed help (Leach, 1987). On one occasion when this group was going over names of students who needed financial aid, Rex soon had contributed $20,000 and the Youth Action Line had pledged $7,000 but had no idea how they would get the funds to cover this amount. In a few days they received a check for $7,000 from Rex Callicott, with a note of thanks for helping the needy students (Bendall, 1987). “Before he died, Callicott provided for the same philanthropy to continue through the Callicott Foundation. Many students at Ozark Adventist Academy and Southwestern Adventist University are still helped by grants from the Foundation” (Beeler, 1996).
The Argyle Plantation
Rex Callicott will long be remembered for his accomplishments and his dedication to the Southwestern Union. He and his wife, Maudine, and their two children, Rex P. and Bettye, gave to this church the largest gift in the history of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. “Argyle Plantation is a name that will be blazed in the eternal Stewardship Hall of Fame. The land alone is worth millions. The value of the mineral rights cannot be estimated. Already a four-mile hole, costing sixteen million dollars, has been drilled; and there they found it — GAS — with the pressure so powerful they have had to order special pipe from Japan to handle it. Approximately 50% of the land and royalties are the property of the Southwestern Union Conference, Southwestern Adventist College, Arkansas-Louisiana Conference, and Ozark [Adventist] Academy. This is a tremendous event — unprecedented and unparalleled in the entire 130-year history of our church. Thank you, Brother Rex, thank you from the bottom of our hearts. We’ll never stop thanking you. Praise the Lord! Elder V. L. Roberts (former treasurer, associate secretary and stewardship secretary of the Southwestern Union) is in charge of this project. He is known as landlord of Argyle Plantation. Rex Callicott now works for V. L. Roberts” (Leach, 1981). In the first six years alone, nearly six million dollars flowed into the church, supporting the Lord’s work (Leach, 1987).
Farewell to a Friend
Rex Callicott passed away on February 3, 1987, but he still stands out because of his sincerity, his honesty, his close relationship with Jesus, and his humility. He loved his Lord and he had a great vision of a “land that is fairer than day” (Leach, 1987).
(1987, Feb. 4). Jack’s Cookie Co. founder Callicott dies at age 91. State Time Advocate, p. 36.
In 1901, camp meeting was held at Batesville. Volner Brockway (“V. B.”) Watts, a young farmer from Nebraska, along with his wife and two young sons, had come for a year to help in Arkansas (Field, 1902). Watts secured a nice grove handy to town, and had the tent all ready for meetings. The meetings began on time, with a fair attendance. There were about forty Adventists who traveled to camp there, in addition to those who lived in Batesville. Sunday, the last day of the meeting, eight were baptized. Elder Asa E. Field remained there until Thursday, September 12, 1901, when they met and organized a church of fifteen members. V. B. Watts was elected and ordained as the elder. There were several who desired baptism, but on account of rain this was postponed to be done later by Watts (Field, 1901).
A New Church in 1902
As a result of the work of V. B. Watts and another young man, Urbanus Bender, Batesville had a strong church and a new church building that was dedicated March 9, 1902 (Field, 1902). However, the September 5, 1905, Conference proceedings dropped Batesville from their list of churches, “there being no member living at that place” (Review, 1905). In January 1906, though, Urbanus Bender reported that he visited a few that were still faithful at Batesville (Bender, 1906).
Batesville Church Revives
In 1950, the Sabbath schools at Mt. Pleasant and Batesville merged and began meeting at the Mt. Pleasant Church (Kretz, 1950). Elder Kretz held a tent series at Batesville in 1951, but it wasn’t until 1958 that the little group revived when William M. Ashton, a retired postal worker from Texas, along with his wife Olga, moved to this area of Arkansas to dedicate their lives to missionary work there. They began showing temperance films to the community. This effort gained community support and rallied the church members in the whole area (Evans, 1960).
Batesville Church Reorganized in 1961
In 1960, someone donated a lot on Highway 11 where William Ashton could build a community service center (Jones, 1963). He also built a church and on January 21, 1961, the church was reorganized and the members were able to meet in their own building (Evans, 1961). Sabbath, January 4, 1964, the church at Batesville was dedicated. Thanks to Mr. and Mrs. William Ashton, who had worked so faithfully, there was a beautiful place to worship (Evans, 1964).
A New Church in 1982
By 1980 they needed a new church and in January 1981, the Batesville members ended a long search for a suitable building site. May 17, 1981, the members held a ground-breaking ceremony to begin construction on a new 7,000 square-foot facility to be built on the two-and-a-half acre plot located on Highway 69 East and Gap Road (Rucker, 1981). The first church service was held in the new building on January 9, 1982, although the sanctuary was not yet completed. In April 1982, the church celebrated moving into their new sanctuary by having special events three weekends in a row, and by giving a special plaque to Olga Ashton, whose husband had been so instrumental in reviving the church family in Batesville (Fivash, 1982). The Batesville Church was dedicated debt free on October 12, 1991 (Record, 1991).
(1905, Sep. 5). Southwestern Union Record, p. 2.
(1991, Oct. 1). Ibid., p. 12.
Bender, U. (1906, Jan. 30). Ibid., p. 2.
Evans, I. M. (1960, Dec. 14). Ibid., p. 4.
Ibid. (1961. Jan. 4). p. 3.
Ibid. (1964, Jan. 15). p. 2.
Field, A. E. (1901, Oct. 15). Review and Herald, p. 675.
Ibid., (1902, Feb. 25). p. 122.
Fivash, Marilyn. (1982, Apr. 1). Southwestern Union Record, p. 8F.
Ibid. (1982, Aug. 19). p. 12F.
Hancock, J. Wayne. (1982, Apr. 1). Ibid., p. 8E.
Jones, Mike A. (1963, Jan. 28). North Pacific Union Gleaner, p. 1.
Kretz, R. L. (1950, Feb. 22). Southwestern Union Record, p. 4.
December 11, 1958, was the first organizational meeting for the Hot Springs Navy League Council (hereinafter “Navy League”), part of a national organization of men voluntarily seeking to keep the American public informed of our Navy’s needs, included veterans of the various military services, and non-veterans, too (Sanders, 2017). The original idea for the camp began when the Navy League needed a base on Lake Ouachita for training its Sea Cadets. This program, the Naval Sea Cadet Corps (NSCC) was for boys ages fourteen to seventeen. Also included, the Navy League Cadet Corps (NLCC), was for boys ages twelve to thirteen, to promote interest and skill in naval disciplines while instilling strong moral character and life skills through leadership and technical programs modeled after the Navy’s professional development system (Corps, 2005). Peter Dierks Joers, president of the Navy League and vice-president of Dierks Forests, Inc., offered to donate sixty acres of land for the project, and the U. S. Corps of Engineers, which has jurisdiction over lakeshore property, agreed to lease the remaining fifty-three acres to the Navy League, which was a non-profit organization, giving them a 113 acre site on which to build the camp. The name Camp Yorktown Bay was chosen, named for the second U. S. Aircraft Carrier Yorktown, bombed by the Japanese in late 1944 off Okinawa during World War II, and for the town of Yorktown, Virginia, which was the scene of a major naval battle during the American Revolution. The president, Peter D. Joers and George Earnshaw, secretary at the time the idea for the camp was conceived, had both been officers on the carrier, Yorktown (Council, 1962).
In 1960 the Navy League sponsored a Navy Day celebration with the theme “Arkansas Salutes the Navy.” Top brass from all parts of the country were in attendance. Leading the celebration were L to R: Honorable John L. McClellan, U.S. Senator from Arkansas; Commander Peter D. Joers, Navy League President; and Brigadier General J. C. Munn, USMC Assistant Commandant.
USS Yorktown Recipe for 10,000 Chocolate Chip Cookies
The USS Yorktown carried a complement of 2,600 men, so this recipe made enough for three to four cookies per person.
112 pounds of chocolate chips 165 pounds of flour 500 eggs 100 pounds of white granulated sugar 87 pounds of shortening 75 pounds of brown sugar 12 pounds of butter 3 pounds of salt 3 cups of vanilla 4 cups of water 1 1/2 pounds of baking soda
Cream white sugar and brown sugar with shortening and butter. Add eggs, mixing. Incorporate flour, water, salt, and baking soda. Add vanilla and chocolate chips. Drop by measured scoops on greased cookie sheet. Bake at 350 degrees 12 to 15 minutes.
Posted in the USS Yorktown Naval Museum in Charleston, S.C.
Navy League Camp Construction Begins
As the Navy League began work on the camp, the idea of the project grew to not only serve the Sea Cadets, but hundreds of other Garland County youth as well. The first project was to put in a three-and-a-half mile gravel road joining the access road from Hwy. 270 to Ouachita State Park. By 1962, the Council had cleared two large areas. On one area they had built a 27′ by 90′ mess hall and five 20′ by 20′ cabins. On the other, an administration building had been built and they had plans to build five additional cabins. Pressure treated lumber was used on all the buildings and they all had concrete floors. When completed, the camp would include an office, mess hall, ships store, sick bay, amphitheater with open-air chapel, waterfront development, program equipment and camp water system. Electrical power lines were being installed and telephone service was added shortly. Later, the Navy League planned to construct three-sided Adirondack shelters for year-round camping, and clear trails over the area (Council, 1962). The camp motto was, “He stands the straightest who stoops to help a child.”
Navy League Camp Dedication
On Friday and Saturday, June 15 and 16, 1962, a special dedication for the camp was held, with the actual dedication ceremony taking place at Camp Yorktown Bay on Saturday afternoon. Many naval officers and dignitaries from around the United States were invited to attend and forty-five of these distinguished guests and spouses came for the dedication. Many of these men had served on the USS Yorktown.
Photo courtesy of the Navy League.
Navy League Youth Program begins
Camp Yorktown Bay opened its doors under the direction of the Navy League to young people during the summer of 1962 and beginning July 2, ran three twelve-day camps for boys and one for girls (Sentinel-Record, 1962). Because of the naval aspect of the camp’s origin, there were classes in seamanship, basic navigation, and naval terms along with the swimming, boating, hiking, nature study, first aid, softball, archery, and other sports. At first the camp could accommodate seventy campers plus the necessary staff per week. That number could double when the remaining cabins they hoped to build were completed, for total accommodations of 840 campers and staff each summer (Council, 1962). In the summer of 1963, the Navy League expanded the program to twelve sessions with ten for boys and two for girls. They also donated 192 scholarships for young people to attend (Sentinel-Record, 1963).
Corporal Missile Presented to the Camp
Flyer Advertising the Navy League Youth Camp
Navy League signs five-Year Lease with the Arkansas Boys Club
The Navy League never felt that they were doing an adequate job of operating the summer camp program so in June 1964, the Navy League and the Arkansas Boys Club officials signed an agreement turning control of Camp Yorktown Bay over to the Boys Club for a period of five years, effective January 1, 1965 (Sentinel-Record, 1964). The Boys Club operated a summer camp program in 1965 (Abilene Reporter-News, 1965) but news that the Boys Club members were not taking care of the camp nor upholding the values and high standards upon which the camp had been founded soon reached the Navy League and they rescinded the lease after the first year.
Dream for Our Own Camp
The Arkansas-Louisiana Conference had never owned a youth camp, but had dreams of having one that would be well-suited to their needs. In 1965, the youth director, Elder Wally D. Welch, stopped at the Meyers Realty Company in Hot Springs and asked if they could show him some property on the lake that might be used for a camp facility. The owner, Lawrence Meyers, spent most of the day with Wally looking at various lake properties. The properties were very expensive and the conference didn’t have any money to invest in a youth camp—they had just completed a new girls’ dorm and were starting to build the gymnasium at Ozark Academy. At the end of the day Wally explained this to Mr. Meyers and Mr. Meyers asked, “Well, let’s just say you had some property on the lake somewhere; what would you do with it?” So Wally explained to him the kind of youth camp we would like to have, if and when we had the funds to buy such a facility (Welch, 1968).
Mr. Meyers thoughtfully said, “Well there is only one camp like that in this whole country and that’s Camp Yorktown Bay out on Lake Ouachita.” He continued, “But you couldn’t touch that at all because a group of men who were formerly in the Navy built this camp and they have invested a whole lot of money in it. Several of those men served on the aircraft carrier, the Yorktown, so that’s why they call their camp ‘Camp Yorktown Bay.’” But Meyers said he would go talk to Peter Joers, vice-president of Dierks Forestry, and also president of the Navy League. Dierks Forestry owned some lake property and Meyers thought they might be willing to give the Arkansas-Louisiana conference a long-term lease on it (Sherrill, n.d.).
When Meyers went to see Peter Joers he asked, “Peter, how is your camp doing?” Peter replied, “Not any good at all.” He went on to explain that they had money and a dream, but didn’t know anything about running a camp. They had tried it for three years without any success, so they finally gave up on it and leased it out to the Arkansas Boys Club. They hadn’t taken care of the camp and Peter said, “I don’t know what we’re going to do with it.” Mr. Meyers replied, “Why don’t you give it to the Seventh-day Adventists?” Peter’s grandmother, LaDesha Dierks Joers, had been a Seventh-day Adventist for many years, living near Union College, so Peter knew quite a bit about Adventists. Meyers proceeded to tell Peter all that he knew about the Seventh-day Adventists’ dream for a youth camp. When Meyers finished, Peter said, “Tell those people to come see me. If they are half as good as you say they are, I think we will give it to them” (Sherrill, n.d.).
Navy League Gives Lease to Seventh-day Adventists
Meyers called the Conference office saying, “I think they are going to give you this Camp Yorktown Bay on Lake Ouachita, lock, stock, and barrel, no strings attached.” When they met with Peter he said, “As far as I am concerned, you can have the camp. About a hundred of us have invested in this camp property and it is now administered by a board of twelve, of which I am chairman. They usually take my recommendation. I don’t know if they will this time or not, but I’m going to recommend to them we give you the camp.” When Peter told the board all he knew about Seventh-day Adventists and the work they do, the board voted unanimously to give the twenty-year lease of Camp Yorktown Bay to the Arkansas-Louisiana Conference and have them come and take it over (Sherrill, n.d.). Three of the provisions given by the Hot Springs Navy League when they assigned the lease to the conference were that: 1) We provide camping facilities for under-privileged children each year, along with camps for our own members; 2) Should we ever cease to be interested in the operation of the camp, that it be returned to the members of the Board of the Hot Springs Navy League; and 3) That we retain the name Camp Yorktown Bay (Agreement, 1965).
Transfer of Lease on September 15, 1965
On September 15, 1965, a formal ceremony was held and the U. S. Corps of Engineers’ lease of the fifty-three acres of waterfront property of Camp Yorktown Bay to the Hot Springs Navy League Council was sublet to the Arkansas Conference Association of Seventh-day Adventists (Beeler, 1996). At this time, the camp included a small office building, a one-bedroom caretaker’s home, an open-air covered dining hall and enclosed kitchen with $25,000 worth of stainless steel appliances and fixtures, five 20′ x 20′ screened cabins, a restroom facility, an open-air pavilion/basketball court, horseshoes area, ball field with backstop and softball equipment still in the cellophane, a pickup truck, a motor boat, a rowboat, a canoe rack with several canoes, a roped-off swimming area, and separate boating area. The camp and facilities were valued at about $250,000 (Sherrill, n.d.). In addition to the 113 acres of camp property, there were two small islands about a quarter mile from the swimming and canoeing area. The larger island, about one acre, was the Peter Joers Island and the smaller island, about half an acre, became known as PIN Island, possibly named for Paul Irving (“P. I.”) Nosworthy, who was the conference treasurer during this time (Ray, 1979; cf. 1966 plans below). An open house for the camp was held on October 17, 1965, with about 200 in attendance (Wright, 1965). On May 21, 1968, the sixty acres of adjoining Dierks Forestry land that had been donated to the Navy League by Peter D. Joers was donated to the Conference (Warranty, 1968).
Our First Summer Camp at Camp Yorktown Bay
The first Seventh-day Adventist summer camp held at Camp Yorktown Bay was in July 1966 (Green, 1966; cf. Welch, 1966). Since there were only five duplex cabins, the camps for girls and boys were held separately, July 3-10 for girls, and July 10-17 for boys. The cost was $18.50 for the week (Welch, 1966).
Plans to Develop the Camp
First Camporee At the Camp
It was voted for the Missionary Volunteer department of the conference to conduct a Missionary Volunteer Camporee at Camp Yorktown Bay from May 5 – 7, 1967 (Minutes, 1966).
Camp Improvements 1967-1968
When the camp was given to the conference there was sufficient eating, sleeping, and meeting space for eighty campers at a time. By June 1967, several improvements had been completed to handle up to 160 campers at the camp: 1) Five new duplex cabins were added to accommodate mixed groups. The cabins had large screened windows to allow fresh air, with shutters that could be lifted to provide shade and keep out rain, or lowered to add warmth and privacy; 2) Two piers and docks were built in the swim area; and 3) To accommodate the growing numbers of youth attending our summer camps, the dining hall at Camp Yorktown bay was enlarged by fifty per cent. A large rock fireplace was added to the dining hall to add a place for indoor campfires (Record, 1967a); 4) An additional bathhouse was added; 5) New boating equipment was purchased (Welch, 1967). As a result of the new cabins, 1967 was the first year the camp program was divided by age instead of gender. June 18-25 was for ages nine to thirteen; June 25-July 2 was for ages twelve to sixteen, with twelve and thirteen year-olds allowed to go to either or both camps (Record, 1967b).
Tragedy at the Camp
The only death in over eighty years of summer camp history in our conference, occurred at Camp Yorktown Bay on Monday, June 19, 1967, in the ski area. Staff and campers alike still distinctly recall this tragic incident that took place over fifty years ago. Two campers, Stephen Burton and Lewis Cox, clearly remember their first summer camp experience. On their first day of camp activities, they looked out the back window of their cabin and saw the flashing lights of an ambulance (Burton, 2019). They were shocked to learn that a young girl, Connie Theriot, had apparently collapsed while water skiing (Dyer, 1967). Thirty-six year old Jerry Wynne, the spotter in the boat, witnessed her fall, and the boat driver, Alvin Castania, also thirty-six, turned around to pick her up. Witnesses told the Garland County sheriff that Connie was already unconscious by then (Gazette, 1967). The camp nurse attempted to revive her with artificial respiration and oxygen. Connie was taken to a Hot Springs hospital where she was pronounced dead on arrival. Connie’s father, Roy Theriot, said that “she was known to have a slight heart murmur, but the advice of all doctors had always been that she not be restricted in her physical activities.” Connie’s twin brother, Donnie, had died of a similar heart condition five years before (Banner-Tribune, 1967).
By July 1968, a large staff building directly across the road from the dining hall had just been completed. This facility provided a headquarters for the camp so that the camp director could live closer to the camping area. There was also room for a nurse’s office, camp store, and additional guest rooms. A beautiful stone fireplace was in the lobby to offer warmth in cooler seasons (Voss, 1968). Paul Irving Nosworthy had served as the conference secretary-treasurer for seventeen years and at the time of his retirement August 31, 1974, the staff building was named Nosworthy Lodge.
By the summer of 1969, our conference was running three weeks of summer camp, which included one week of Friendship Camp. This was a week that donations were given so under-privileged children could attend free of charge, as promised to the Navy League.
Summer Camp Schedule
The 1971 summer camp schedule included a week of blind camp to make the camp program four weeks: Friendship Camp — (ages 10-16) — June 21-27 Summer Camp No. I — (ages 9-13) — June 27-July 4 Summer Camp No. II — (ages 12-16) — July 4-11 Camp for the Blind — July 11-16
New Nature Building in 1972
In 1971, Peter D. Joers donated the money for a nature and craft building. Elder Sherrill organized a work bee at the camp to construct what was named the Peter Dierks Joers Nature Building (often referred to as Town Hall). The foundation and floor made of concrete was poured in the rain on a Sunday by volunteer help from men in the Bonnerdale, DeQueen, and Hot Springs churches. The pouring of the floor 30′ x 100′ was quite a task. Three giant eight-yard concrete trucks got stuck and had to be winched out. One truck had to be unloaded before it could be gotten out. Elder Sherrill met with the pastors from Arkansas and three from Louisiana along with his departmental men at Camp Yorktown Bay on the following Sunday. Work started at 1:00 p.m. that afternoon and by noon on Thursday, the exterior of the building was almost completed. The front of the building was covered with polished native stones and petrified wood. Before long, the interior was finished as well, with display cabinets completed and ready for materials to be displayed in them (Sherrill, 1972).
Pioneers and Indians
In 1972, covered wagons had been added for “Schooner Circle” where the campers took turns sleeping overnight. Also, three teepees and a native-American-style hogan were added to the large island in Lake Ouachita near Camp Yorktown Bay. Campers and counselors took turns canoeing over to the island to spend an interesting night out in nature. Both of these overnight experiences were very much enjoyed by the campers (Bendall, 1972a).
Groundbreaking for Camp Motel in 1972
By 1972, the number of individuals using Camp Yorktown Bay had more than doubled since 1968, and the need for additional housing had become urgent. For some time, the conference had been wanting to provide more housing but funds were not available. Then, at an Arkansas-Louisiana medical retreat in September 1971, the doctors worked out a plan whereby the laymen of the conference would furnish the finances so a twelve-unit building could be constructed. Each room had carpeting and a private bath. Individual heating/air conditioning units were installed. Four of the rooms had kitchenettes. They ended up building a sixteen-unit building with laundry facilities. The motel helped to alleviate the crowded room problems at workers’ meetings, lay congresses, and summer camps (Bendall, 1972b).
Ski Shed and Boat Dock
Horses Added to the Camp in 1975
February 9 – 12, 1975, the Arkansas ministers met at the camp to construct a twelve-foot addition along the whole length of the cafeteria. This addition was winterized and air-conditioned, with room for a bakery and laundry facilities (Eccles, 1975). Probably the greatest single attraction that was added to the camp in 1975 was the horses. Dr. Bryant of Tennessee, gave four beautiful Appaloosa horses to the camp, then Stan and Punky Garret of New Orleans gave a quarter horse that was ready to foal in a few months. In addition, Holmes Goslee loaned four horses to the camp for the duration of the summer. Of course, the horses required a corral and stable which, thanks to the Good News Singers, were built in record time, since the horses were enroute to the camp. A temporary barn and stable were built during the winter of 1975-1976 by the camp superintendent, Ron Becker (Herman, 1976). Later, saddles were purchased for the horses and a permanent barn was built in 1978.
CYB Summer Camp Staff 1976
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 1977
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 1978
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 1979
Steps to the Swim Dock in 1980
The path leading from the dining hall to the swim dock was rather steep and loose rocks made it easy to slip. During camp in 1980, Rene Zambrano and the interim ranger, Stephen Burton, built steps going down the hill, using railroad ties and fill dirt to create a terraced walkway. That summer, camp staff lined the edges of the walkway with rocks to help prevent erosion.
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 1980
By 1980, there were ten weeks of summer camp programs, including several specialty camps (Rust, 1980). For the first time in the history of our conference, over 1,000 campers attended camp in one summer (Elder, 1981).
Photo courtesy of the Southwestern Union Record.
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 1981
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 1982
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 1983
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 1984
Milestones in 1985
September 15, 1985, marked the twentieth anniversary of the Adventists’ use of Camp Yorktown Bay. The Navy League, who had originally leased the land from the Corps of Engineers, had arranged for us to sublease the land belonging to the Corps. Also in 1985, Camp Yorktown Bay went through its toughest evaluations in its twenty-year history. It was inspected by the Arkansas State Health Department, Gencon Insurance Company, the Corps of Engineers, the Garland County Fire Department, The Arkansas American Diabetic Association, and the American Camping Association and came through with flying colors. At that time, Camp Yorktown Bay was one of only four Adventist camps that were accredited by the American Camping Association. (Record, 1986).
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 1985
New 25 Year Lease
As the lease for the waterfront property came due for renewal on October 31, 1985, the conference treasurer, Marshall Chase, negotiated with the Navy League and the Corps of Engineers to have the new lease drawn up in the name of the Arkansas-Louisiana Conference rather than going through the Navy League. The Corps advised Elder Chase that under the new Government Austerity Program they might have to charge as much as $1500 a year for the lease. Elder Chase and Ron Whitehead, conference youth director, pointed out the many community oriented programs operated by Camp Yorktown Bay such as Blind Camp, Diabetic Camp, and Friendship Camp. On February 12, 1986, conference president, Bill Woodruff, and Marshall Chase met Bill Miller from the Corps of Engineers in the office of Judge Henry Britt in Hot Springs. Judge Britt represented the Navy League. A new twenty-five-year lease was signed in the name of the conference with the Corps of Engineers at a total cost of $10 per year — only $250 for the entire lease period, which ran from January 1, 1986, to December 31, 2011 (Lease, 1986).
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 1986
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 1987
A Year in the Life of Camp Yorktown Bay
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 1988
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 1989
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 1990
1990 Ski Team
Summer of 1990
During the summer of 1990, a total of 730 campers attended one of the following camps at CYB: Cub, Junior I, Junior II, Teen, Diabetic, Blind, Family, Waterski, Horsemanship, Scuba, or Half-Marathon. A six-person pyramid was a new feature of the weekly ski show by the Camp Yorktown Bay Ski Team (Kostenko, 1990).
Camp Yorktown Bay Operating Board Begins
A Camp Yorktown Bay Study Committee was formed in 1990 with their first meeting held September 23 and 24 at the camp. Their purpose was to create a mission statement for the camp and to plan and recommend ways to maintain, operate, and market the camp. The committee did a walk-through of the camp, inspecting it for needed maintenance and repairs. The committee recommended to the conference executive committee that the rocket (corporal missile) be painted and the plane (jet trainer) removed (Committee, 1990). This study committee, with the addition of one more member, became the first Camp Yorktown Bay Operating Board for the camp (Minutes, 1990).
Celebration of 25 Years
Elder Frank Sherrill and Elder Richard Bendall were the featured guests at the anniversary celebration banquet on Sabbath evening, September 29, 1990, held in the Camp Yorktown Bay cafeteria. It had been twenty-five years since the camp had been donated to the conference on September 15, 1965. The celebration was part of the annual Pastor/Elder’s Retreat and a group of more than 100 persons enjoyed an inspirational review of the Lord’s leading in providing this beautiful camp for our conference (Minutes, 1990).
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 1991
A Forty Acre Gift from the Navy League
At the end of 1991, the Arkansas-Louisiana conference accepted a generous offer from the Navy League of Hot Springs to give them forty acres of land near the main camp area. The Navy League indicated that its desire to present this gift was based on its large satisfaction with the program our church had carried on at Camp Yorktown Bay since they had passed the operation over to the conference (Minutes, 1991; cf. Quitclaim, 1992).
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 1992
The Future of the U.S. Navy Jet Trainer
When the Jet Trainer was first donated to the camp it was completely intact except that the engine had been removed. Campers loved to slide back the glass and climb into the cockpit, work the controls, and crawl across the wings. Over the years the controls quit working, the glass over the cockpit had broken out and some metal had worn to become sharp. Eventually it became obvious that the trainer would need to be restored or removed. In May 1993, the Camp Yorktown Bay Board voted to retain the jet trainer plane, rather than donate it to the Naval Air Museum in Pensacola, Florida. The plane was to be restored by the time of the first CYB Board meeting in 1994 (Minutes, 1993). However, the restoration did not take place and the plane was donated to the Naval Air Museum.
A New Dining Hall in 1993
The original food service building was destroyed by fire on March 12, 1991 (Daniel, 1991). One side of the gym was enclosed to house a temporary kitchen. A new building that included the kitchen, dining area, restrooms, two offices, the camp store, and an infirmary was ready for the 1993 summer camp season. The paved surface in front of the building was paid for with funds raised by the camp staff during a 1993 phone-a-thon campaign, which raised $8,500 from 352 donors. The camp staff themselves pledged $500. The new dining building was dedicated on May 15, 1994, with representatives from the Navy League, the American Camping Association, the Arkansas-Louisiana conference, and from Hot Springs and Mountain Pine who came together to celebrate not only the dedication of the building but also the history of the camp (Record, 1994).
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 1993
1993 Ski Team
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 1994
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 1995
Christian Camping International Membership
In 1995, Camp Yorktown Bay became a member of Christian Camping International/USA (CCI/USA), an association of more than 750 camps, conference centers, and retreat centers located throughout the United States. This new membership linked the Camp Yorktown Bay board and staff with more than 5,000 peer professionals in Christian camping and with the CCI/USA national office in Colorado Springs, which sponsored numerous training events designed to promote excellence in camping leaders. The result of this connection with CCI/USA was that members became better equipped in their task of shaping the lives of youth (Record, 1995).
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 1996
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 1997
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 1998
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 1999
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 2000
New 25 Year Lease
January 9, 2001, Elder James Gilley, conference president, received a letter from the Department of the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers granting a new twenty-five year lease for the waterfront property of Camp Yorktown Bay, effective January 1, 2001, and ending December 31, 2025. The annual rental of the Corps of Engineers property is now $375 per year (Torrey, 2001).
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 2001
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 2002
G50 ThunderStorm Hits Camp
On Friday, July 12, 2002, a G50 thunderstorm with winds of 58 mph, hit Camp Yorktown Bay during Tween Camp. The ski boat dock blew across the cove with damage to several boats and the dock structure, the brand new water trampoline/miniature blob ripped into the trees, the swim dock was pushed onto the shoreline with major damage caused to the dock itself, paddle boats, wave-runners and sailboats were flipped over or blown onto shore, a tree crashed through the sound shed at the campfire bowl, and numerous trees and large limbs were knocked down with other minor damage throughout the camp. A staff member, Kevin Burton, looking out the window of the camp store, saw a red streak fly past, but had no idea what it was until he later saw one of the canoes had blown into the trees at the top of the hill by the dining hall. Volunteers were called together for a work bee on Sunday, July 14, and managed to get much of the damage repaired and things back in place for the start of Teen Camp that afternoon.
From 2000 to 2003, Jan and Gary Manly spent countless hours, mostly volunteer, doing things to help the camp in various ways. Gary renovated the camp motel and lodge with new beds and furniture. Using his expertise in plumbing and construction he put new doors on the boys’ cabins, and on the motel, and put new bathroom sinks and tile throughout the motel. Jan worked as the camp cook during those years and also cooked for many church retreat weekends. The Manly’s two sons, Gary Jr. and Jeff helped around the camp as well. Gary Jr. repainted all the CYB logos on the boys’ cabins and the well house (Taylor, 2003).
New Campfire Bowl Stage in 2003
In 2003, the eighth grade class at Ozark Adventist School in Gentry raised about $2,500 for a Camp Yorktown Bay (CYB) mission trip. They used the money not only for their expenses but also to pay for the lumber, wiring and other materials needed for their project. The eighth graders spent six days at CYB remodeling the stage at the campfire bowl. This included rewiring for new lights and power outlets. In addition to the stage, many smaller projects were completed. The leaves were raked, trails repaired, handrails installed, gravel replaced, benches and the sound building painted, and the horseshoe pits were redone. There was still time for play each afternoon. The kids enjoyed wake-boarding, tubing, and sunbathing (Burton, 2003).
In January 2003, the roads from the flagpole to the dining hall, around the front of the boys’ cabins, and from the dining hall to the top of the hill was paved with new asphalt. There was a gift to the camp that made this possible (Minutes, 2003).
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 2003
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 2004
New Dining Hall Deck in 2004 and 2005
The purpose of Ozark Adventist School’s eighth-grade class mission trips in 2004 and 2005, was to build a large deck out the back of the dining hall at Camp Yorktown Bay. In 2004, Stephen Burton, along with his daughter and son-in-law, Julie and Rodney Bowes, spent spring break at the camp putting in posts and framing the deck floor for the large octagon portion of the deck. When the eighth-graders arrived for their mission trip, they installed the floor-boards, the railings, and the steps to the ground on this part of the deck. In 2005, the eighth-grade class put in the floor joists, the flooring, railings of the upper level of the deck and added steps connecting the upper deck to the lower deck.
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 2005
New Septic System
Paperwork for permits to install a new septic system began in 2006. As plans were being made to replace the thirty-five year old cabins, the consulting engineer, Jerry Williams, determined that the new cabins, which would have toilet and shower facilities, could not be connected to the old septic field leach systems. The proposed project consisted of constructing a new sewer collection and treatment facility that included two 3,000 gallon pump tanks, one 3,000 gallon grease trap tank, three steel septic tanks of 35,000 gallons total, in addition to the sand filters, chlorine tank, meters, and lines needed (Williams, 2008).
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 2006
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 2007
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 2008
CYB Summer Camp Staff 2009
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 2010
New Cabins in 2010
During 2009-2010, new cabins were built at the camp. Five duplex cabins were built for the girls and five for the boys, with heating and air conditioning in addition to restrooms and showers in each side. The girls’ cabins were completed in time for outdoor school but the boys’ cabins were not ready until camp started. Wood walkways and decks were added as well.
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 2011
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 2012
New Swim Docks In 2012
Between the summers of 2011 and 2012, the old wood and steel swimming docks that had become rusty and unsafe were removed and all-new swim docks with lifetime decks and flotation, and new diving boards were put in. Volunteers spent countless hours constructing the docks on the ball field before transporting them to the lake in time for summer camp. This made the swim area a much safer and fun place for campers (House, 2012). Another new feature for the summer of 2012 that was very popular was a gaga pit. Ray House, youth director, had the concept and he and Stephen Burton built it during outdoor school in May 2012.
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 2013
2013 Ski Team
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 2014
Renovation of the Lodge
In 2014, the work of renovating the lodge began. Eric and Linda Bray, the camp rangers, did the demolition of the interior. In a few days, they had torn down walls, removed carpet, linoleum, and tile from the kitchen, bathrooms, and bedrooms. When the renovations were completed, the kitchen was larger with new cabinets and appliances, the bedrooms were enlarged, and there was a handicap-accessible bathroom (Villegas, 2014).
Motel Renovated in 2015
In 2014 – 2015, the motel was gutted down to the studs and each room completely renovated. Two rooms were redesigned to be handicap-accessible.
Celebration of 50 Years
June 4-7, 2015, Camp Yorktown Bay hosted a fifty-year anniversary of the donation of the camp from the Hot Springs Navy League to the Arkansas-Louisiana conference on September 15, 1965. Activities were planned for all day Friday and for Sabbath. Previous camp directors and staff were especially invited to attend (Record, 2015).
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 2015
Town Hall Renovated in 2016
In February 2016, plans were approved to remodel the town hall building. It was gutted down to the studs and completely renovated. Rooms were reconfigured to create space for much-needed restrooms in the building, in addition to the renovations made throughout the rest of the building.
The roads were improved in 2016 by adding cement to the s-curves coming down the hill into the camp and in 2017 the roads within the camp were repaved. This included paving the area in front of the gym, adding parking spaces, the road to the horse barn and by the town hall, which would finalize the project started in fourteen years before, in 2003 (Minutes, 2017).
CYB Summer Camp Staff 2016
Camp of the Year Award
In the summer of 2016, Camp Yorktown Bay received the North American Division Norm Middag Award as Camp of the Year with a commemorative plaque and a check for $2,500. Eric and Linda Bray, Camp Manager and Food Service/Hospitality Services Director, as well as Jeff Villegas who was the Conference Youth Director at the time, provided outstanding service and a commitment to excellence. This was demonstrated in three significant ways: safety provisions, hospitality and care of campers, and facility upgrades (Orian, 2017; cf. Minutes, 2017).
CYB Summer Camp Staff 2017
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 2018
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 2019
CYB SUMMER CAMP STAFF 2020
2020 CYB Virtual Summer Camp
What happens to summer camp when you have a pandemic and are required to use social distancing? Welcome to a virtual summer camp!
(2017, Mar. 9). Executive Committee Minutes. Shreveport, LA: Arkansas-Louisiana Conference of SDA.
(2017, Apr. 3). Ibid.
Beeler, Charles R. (1996). A History of Seventh-day Adventists in Arkansas and Louisiana 1888-1996. Keene: Arkansas-Louisiana Conference of Seventh-day Adventists. p. 162.
Bement, W. E. (1937, Apr. 28). Southwestern Union Record, p. 2.
Bendall, Richard W. (1969, Mar. 8). Ibid., p. 7.
Ibid. (1969, May 24). p. 7
Ibid. (1972a, Jul. 8). p. 11.
Ibid. (1972b, Sep. 9). p. 9.
Britt, Judge Henry M. (1991, Nov. 5). Camp Yorktown Bay. Letter from Judge Britt.
Burton, Stephen. (2003, Jul. 1). Newsletter, Arkansas-Louisiana Conference of Seventh-day Adventists, p. 11.
Ibid. (2019, Aug. 12). Personal interview.
Carter, Lee. (1944, Apr. 12). Ibid., p. 1.
Daniel, Ray F. (1991, Mar. 13). Letter to the Executive Committee.
Davis, Dan. (2014, Mar. 25). Ruins of College Lodge.Retrieved from flickr.com.
Eccles, Floyd W. (1975, Apr. 12). Southwestern Union Record, p. 7.
Elder, W. H. (1981, Mar. 5). Ibid., p. 5.
Gardner, Mrs. T. R. (1944, Apr. 26). Ibid., p. 4.
Green, George. (1966, Jan. 19). Ibid., p. 2.
Haas, Harold E. (1952, Aug. 7). Ibid., p. 2.
Ibid. (1953, May 20). p. 5.
Ibid. (1954a, Jun. 16). p. 4.
Ibid. (1954b, Jul. 7). p. 6. (Photo shows the Brownie Six-20 Camera model D made from 1953-1957.)
Herman, Jim. (1976, May 8). Southwestern Union Record, p. 5.
House, Ray. (2012, Jul. 1). Youth Ministry Update. Arkansas-Louisiana Conference of Seventh-day Adventists Newsletter, p. 6.
Kostenko, Peter A. (1990, Dec. 1). Southwestern Union Record, p. 7.
Naval Sea Cadet Corps. (2005). Who We Are. Retrieved from seacadets.org.
Olsen, Boyd E. (1947, Jun. 11). Southwestern Union Record,p. 4.
Orian, Stephen J. (2017, Mar. 1). Ibid. p. 10.
Ray, Ronel D. (1979, Fall). The History and Development of Camp Yorktown Bay, p. 6.
Ross, James B. (1941, Jun. 9). Southwestern Union Record, pp. 1, 2.
Ruf, A. F. (1935, Apr. 24). Ibid., p. 4.
Ibid. (1936, Aug. 19). pp. 3, 4.
Rust, Gary. (1980, May 29). Ibid., p. 6.
Sanders, Ben. (2017). Camp Yorktown Bay – Lake Ouachita. Retrieved from lakeouachita.org.
Sherrill, E. Frank. (1972, Sep. 9). Southwestern Union Record, p. 8.
Ibid. (no date). History of Camp Yorktown Bay. Unpublished.
Taylor, John E. (2003, Oct. 1). Ibid., p. 7.
The Hot Springs Council – Navy League of the U. S. (1962, Jun. 16). Camp Yorktown Bay, p. 2.
Torrey, Burke S. (Jan. 4, 2001). Lake Ouachita, Arkansas, Lease No. DACW38-1-01-18, Camp Yorktown Bay. Letter from the Department of the Army, Vicksburg District, Corps of Engineers, Real Estate Division to James W. Gilley, Arkansas-Louisiana Conference President.
U.S. Navy. (1937, Jul. 21). Yorktown (CV5). Starboard bow, underway. Retrieved from catalog.archives.gov.
U.S. Navy. (1940, Jul. 1). USS Yorktown (CV-5) embarking aircraft at Naval Air Station North Island, in June 1940. Retrieved from history.navy.mil.
Voss, H. H. (1968, Jul. 27). Southwestern Union Record, p. 3.
Welch, W. D. (1966, May 28). Ibid., p. 9.
Ibid. (1967, Apr. 22). p. 11.
Whitehead, Mrs. Hensen. (1950, Jul. 26). Ibid., pp. 3, 4.
Williams, Marvin (Jerry). (2008, Jan. 8). Camp Yorktown Bay Wastewater System Improvements. Letter from Engineers, Inc. to the Department of Arkansas Heritage Historic Preservation Program.
Winger, D. M. (1959, Sep. 30). Southwestern Union Record, p. 4.
Herbert Clifford Hartwell was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on August 7, 1876, to Fanny Charlotte Hurst and Wilbur Fiske Hartwell. Herbert was the oldest of six children (Ancestry, 2021). He became a member of the Seventh-day Adventist Church in 1899 and entered the colporteur work. Herbert attended school at South Lancaster, Massachusetts, then began his ministerial work in 1901 in the Central New England Conference (Worker, 1960). On June 4, 1902, he was united in marriage with Sarah “Sadie” Elisabeth Jones, and to this union four children were born: Raymond Herbert Hartwell, Anna Pearl Hartwell, Hazel Fanny Hartwell, and Donald Clifford Hartwell (Ancestry, 2021).
Years of Service
Herbert C. Hartwell was ordained in 1905. Elder Hartwell became president of the Central New England Conference in 1909. When that conference was divided in 1910, Elder Hartwell served as the president of the newly formed Massachusetts Conference. Elder Hartwell served as president of the Western New York Conference from 1914 to 1916, then became president of the Eastern New York Conference. Elder H. C. Hartwell served as the Missouri Conference president from 1920 until 1933, when he became the Arkansas-Louisiana Conference president (Yearbooks, 1909-1937). Because of failing health Elder Hartwell retired in 1937, after more than 28 years of administrative responsibilities (Worker, 1960).
In 1938, he and Sadie located in Florida where he served as district leader for six years, after which he continued to visit in some 40 churches of the Florida Conference (Worker, 1960). In 1957, Herbert lost his wife of 55 years. He married Mabel Lee Head in September 1958 (Ancestry, 2021).
(1908, Jan. 18). The Tabernacle. Fall River Globe, p. 2.
(1909 – 1937) Yearbook of the Seventh-day Adventist Denomination. Washington, D. C.: Review and Herald Publishing Association.
(1960, Feb. 17). Southern Union Worker, p. 17.
Ancestry.com. (2014, Sep. 21). Sarah ‘Sadie’ Elisabeth Jones. Retrieved from ancestry.com.
Ibid. (2021, May 19). Herbert Clifford Hartwell. Retrieved from ancestry.com.