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Homeletter 1945 19th Season, No. 1

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HYDE BAY HOME LETTER           19th SEASON              Week of June 28 - July 4

Introduction. For the benefit of the parents of new boys, some explanation of this sheet is in order. It has always been my custom to write each week to all parents the sort of letter which a boy ought to write, but seldom does, It endeavors to give a picture of the events of the week at camp. The director is the author and editor. Errors and omissions may, therefore, be charged to his account.
The Status Quo. We have enrolled at the moment seventy-four boys. Four of these have not yet reached camp; two have been having mumps, one has been exposed to this malady, while Old Camper Blaise de Sibour is coming in today. We have a staff of 25 councilors and teachers to supervise this group, Jimmy and Silas have returned to their duties in the kitchen. To our great joy, Theodore Chapman, who has been with us for many years, has returned after two years’ absence. Isaac is a new member of this department although he is known to many Gilman School boys. On the council, Head Councilor Guerry is with us for his third season. Swimming and Dramatics are being covered once more by Mr. McGown and Mr. Barriskill. The handicraft, for a second year, is under the supervision of Mr. Larry Williams. Mr. Richard Williams, who was a ten-year-old camper during the 2nd and 3rd seasons of the camp’s history, has returned to supervise the younger boys, maintain the marine motors, and to give his supervision to riding. He already has the Hacker, (our motor boat), and the little outboard, known to the boys as the S.T.37, in excellent running order. The faculty of the summer school is intact. Mesdames Guerry, McGown, Mercer, Russell and Williams are back at camp, accompanied by Cookie McGown, and Carolyn and Tommy Mercer, and David Williams. They are all living in the adjoining cottages, as they did last year. Mr. Clapsaddle comes up four days a week, as in former years, to supervise the manual training.

The Trip Up. Five boys left Washington at 7 a.m. under the director’s supervision. Twenty—two boarded the train at Baltimore; two joined us in Philadelphia. We enjoyed ample coach space reserved for us at the end of the train. Arriving in New York on time, we crossed to the Grand Central by subway in thirty minutes, to find the New York group of twenty-five rapidly assembling under the supervision of Dick Williams assisted by Alan Pearce, of the council. Presently, an official appeared to take us to the half of the coach reserved for us. We arrived at Ft. Plain only a few minutes late, to find the busses awaiting us. Our arrival at camp before seven o’clock, terminated the easiest of the wartime trips. We found numerous other campers had come in by car.

Bills. In order to save postage, time, and trouble, the bills which should have been sent you at the start of camp are enclosed herewith. They cover half of the season. Another bill will be sent each parent at the start of the last half of the camp. Following the departure of the boy, bills will be sent covering the authorized personal expenditures of each camper.

Reports. You will find enclosed also, the first reports from councilors and teachers, covering the activities of your son since camp started. You will receive a similar report each week during the camp season.

Apology. It has been my custom to answer letters, acknowledge checks, and generally to communicate with parents in the space on the reports reserved for Comment. I hope you will continue to pardon this informal treatment of your communications. I believe you can visualize the difficulty of writing personal letters when one is dealing with such a relatively large number.

Reaction. Nothing is more helpful to a camp director than to receive from parents the reactions of the boys to the camp. This is especially desirable where boys have criticisms to make. Frequently, the cause of complaint can he corrected easily. Sometimes, it is a purely imaginary affair which can be banished with a few words.

Accident Insurance. All parents should have received application blanks for the accident insurance coverage which we have had for several years. The individual parent will be advised of the receipt of the signed application. This is a coverage which has shown itself well worthwhile in the previous history of the camp.

Ration Books. If you haven’t sent in a ration book for your son, it is long since overdue. We have to take out the proper number of stamps to cover the stay of each boy at camp.

Letters Home. Each boy is required to write a letter to his parents in order to gain admission to Sunday night supper. If you do not receive such a letter, please advise the director promptly as we make every effort to make this a complete coverage.

Weight. All boys are weighed, on either Saturday, or Sunday morning, preceding the required soap dip in the lake. Our males are not above reproach, and human beings are never infallible. If you find, some very startling discrepancy in your son’s weight, don’t become alarmed at once. Just let me know the figures, and I will investigate. A boy normally loses a little weight when he first comes to camp, as he is living a more active life than is his normal experience.

Events Omitted. Many interesting and amusing events have occurred since your sons arrived in camp. Those will be covered in the next home letter. Of necessity, this is filled with routine explanations.

June 9, 1945.

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