I've always been intrigued by archeological mysteries. The exploits of Percy Fawcett, Howard Carter, Indiana Jones, and Heinrich Schliemann have always fascinated me. The explorers mentioned above are credited with locating Kin Tutankhamun's tomb, finding the Ark of the Covenant, mapping the Amazon Rain Forest before it disappeared in 1925, and excavating Homer's Troy.
One of the explorers I referenced is totally fictional. If you can identify the fictional explorer and match names with exploits of the other 3.... well we don't have a prize for you, but I will be impressed!
I don't believe I have the temperament to be an archeologist. I have a hard time negotiating my way through a library, and I'm not into digging.
This week, I've been given the task that requires a miniscule amount of archeological skill. You have probably heard that Camp Doublecreek is moving. We have decided what stays and what goes. We have a dilemma. What do we do with our Honor Camper stones? We would really like to take them with us, but they are heavy and difficult to get out of the ground without destroying them. The solution? Make a new sidewalk at Kelly Lane out of bricks that have the names of all our Honor Campers.
This week, I've spent quite a bit of time scouring our "Walk of Fame", writing down names and dates of Honor Campers memorialized in concrete. Do I have everyone? Sadly, no! There have been several snags which impeded our search. For instance, not all the blocks are laid out in chronological order. I found some several feet away from a previous month. Also, the concrete is not uniform. Some concrete was smooth and even while other concrete was rough and rocky. The rough and rocky block were a challenge to read.
Not all the names in concrete are Honor Campers. If we had campers from outside the United States, we put their names in concrete. If we had campers and counselors who attended or worked at Doublecreek more than 5,6,7, or 8 years, we put their names in concrete. I found several names in concrete multiple times.
We've had, surprisingly, very few staff actually prepare blocks. From 1972 through the mid 1990s, Uncle Carter usually mixed the concrete, laid out iron, and poured and smoothed the concrete. In the mid 1990s, Craig and Ryan West took over for the next 15 years or so. Now, Bruce Kirtley does the prep work. Who writes the blocks? We've only had 3 people do that critical job over the 52 summers we've had Honor Campers. Aunt Trudy, Kim Palk and Rachel Chuey.
Environmental issues make it difficult to read the blocks. Over time several blocks were buried under dirt and sand. Weeds have grown over the blocks, and trucks were driven over blocks. It took a lot of cleaning, digging, and sweeping to uncover missing blocks. There was one month I couldn't find, June 1986. I saw where it should be. A dirt patch much smaller than the squares. I started digging, and under 6 inches of sand and dirt, I saw a stone! I kept cleaning, and then saw a date and a name; June 1986, Harper Luedeoke! So, this was how Howard Carter felt when he found Tutankhamun's tomb. OOPS! I just gave away one of the answers to the who found what questions. Pretend you didn't see this.
We haven't found all of the blocks. Two blocks cannot be read. On one the only word I can make out, is Matt. The other block has nothing. We are missing June 1996, and several August dates. I think there were summers when we didn't do Honor Campers in August, and some summers we had Honor Campers but our prep team had returned to school.
We need your help! All the Honor Campers are out there, and we would love to hear from you! Actually, anyone who has Honor Camper information, we would love to hear from you. You can help us fill in the blanks of our Honor Camper roll which would be great,but REALLY we would just like to hear from you!