Monday, June 22, 2015

the "Build Strong" sign

This summer I'll be telling (as always) a new story. I don't want to give it away here in this space. I'll just urge folks to visit FV this summer and witness my telling of this tale around a campfire with the counselors and campers. Why not?

Anyway, at the center of this story is the sign once posted high up on the wall of the east wing of the now-gone "old" "Boys' Dining Hall": BUILD STRONG. I have been searching for a good photo of the sign on that wall, and haven't found one yet. (If you have one, please mail it to me!)

Mike Ketcham reminded me of a classic photo of the sign as it hung in the Old Wawayanda dining hall at Andover, NJ. It seems to be the same sign I remember from my years in "Thomas Lodge" at FV. I suspect that the camp people took it with them when they left NJ and brought the camp to the Catskills.

So I have that one. In a summer camp yearbook from the early 1970s I have a photo of Everett Lake and Doug Tompkins mugging for the camera below the sign, but the photo only includes a letter or two from the sign.

In this photo, taken by Ken and Mark Nathanson's mom one autumn weekend in the late 60s, and sent to me by Ken, you can see where the sign hung. I've noted that with the red arrow. And I've circled some of the many hundreds of plaques and photos that hung from all the walls of that long-lost treasure of a building. To get a closer view of the photo, click on it.