Hyde Bay Logo Checked back into Camp
Don McPherson

Back to The Lodge
Back to Checked Back Into Camp


Donald P. McPherson, III
U.L. in 1957

Don McPherson and  Ann Teaff

     My only season at Hyde Bay was 1957.  My long-time camp was Camp Shohola in Greeley, Pennsylvania – a camp associated with Sidwell Friends School in Washington, D.C.  I was a UL and lived in the Annex to the UL tent.  Don Abbott, a fine gentleman, later to be Head of Millbrook School in Millbrook, New York was one of my UL tent mates, as was Stan Heuisler, a Gilman colleague.  I sailed and jumped horses with Walt McManus, performed in a murder mystery play with Stan Heuisler, and learned how to drive the pickup truck to take garbage to the dump and the tractor to pull tree stumps.

     The thrill of the summer was to steal home with the winning run in a 9 to 8 score against the baseball team from Camp Chenango in Cooperstown’s Doubleday Stadium.  Unfortunately, the opposing catcher cleated me in the right leg and caused a scar, a badge of honor, which took years to disappear.  In 1992, in watching the movie A League of Their Own about a woman’s baseball team, I cried at the opening scene of the movie filmed at Doubleday Field.

     Another great adventure that summer was attending the induction into the Baseball Hall of Fame of Joe Cronin of the Boston Red Sox and Hank Greenburg of the Detroit Tigers, and watching the annual Hall of Fame game.  Ty Cobb, whom I admired for his base running skills, not his nasty and illegal style of sliding with spikes up, was in attendance.  I obtained his autograph.  I still have the autograph.

     Other adventures included learning to sail and race Comet-class sailboats with Walt McManus, a student at McDonogh School in Baltimore; learning, also with Walt McManus as teacher to jump horses over jumps up to about two-feet high; water-skiing occasionally, although I did not have great interest in that activity; playing basketball with counselors in the Cooperstown High School Gymnasium and bouncing on the trampoline to grab trapeze rings approximately 18 feet above the gym floor; and overnight canoeing on the Susquehanna River which originated at a narrow spillway at the end south end of Lake Otsego.

     I remember four of us in two canoes paddling out of bounds of the camp to explore an unoccupied house across a bay of the lake.  We entered by crawling in an unlocked window.  One of the cohorts took an object from the house, like a plate, or something similar, which I refused to do and asked him not to do.  A bull chased us over part of an open field when we were returning to our canoes.  Paddling back to the camp dock, we saw George Chandlee, the Gilman lacrosse coach and one of the more formidable disciplinarians, standing on the dock with the binoculars with which he had been watching us and waiting for our return.  I do not recall the punishment, but it was not severe.  Mr. Chandlee was much more formidable at school than at camp.

    Another adventure was the production of a murder mystery play the ULs produced.  Stan Heuisler, a colleague from Gilman, delivered the classic line in the Charlie Chan mode when sticking the suspected murder weapon knife into the lifeless victim saying: “By Jove, it fits.”  Years later in 1984, I showed Stan, who then was the Editor of Baltimore Magazine, on our Roland Avenue Number 61 commuter bus, a copy of the playbill for the play which Daddy had saved in a file of my activities.

     The first class sailor at Hyde Bay was Christopher Jencks, a brilliant student and later professor at Harvard University.  Chris worked with Lewis Mumford, the American dean of sociology.

     A. J. Downs, a favorite English teacher of mine at Gilman and my advisor one year, was a Hyde Bay counselor.  He was a counselor there with his family.  Jack Garver, the practical art teacher at Gilman also was a counselor.Don McPherson

     I do not have any pictures of when I was at  Hyde Bay.  Accompanying this biographic statement is a picture in my Hyde Bay year 1957 on as a sophomore on the Gilman School Varsity Basketball Team.  I am number eighteen at the upper right.  Our beloved coach John “Nemo” Robinson is in the center of the first row.  On the first row right is Frank Deford, prolific author and long-time writer for Sports Illustrated.

     The first class sailor at Hyde Bay was Christopher Jencks, a brilliant student and later professor at Harvard University.  Chris worked with Lewis Mumford, the American dean of sociology.

     A. J. Downs, a favorite English teacher of mine at Gilman and my advisor one year, was a Hyde Bay counselor.  He was a counselor there with his family.  Jack Garver, the practical art teacher at Gilman also was a counselor.

     After Hyde Bay, I graduated from Gilman School, Baltimore, Maryland in the Class of 1959, Princeton University in the Class of 1963, and Columbia Law School in the Class of 1966.

     I have retired from my firm DLA Piper LLP (US) known as Piper & Marbury when I first came to the firm.  From 1966 to 2009 I practiced real estate and municipal law and headed the real estate practice group for fourteen years. For twenty eight years, I headed or served on committees for the firm’s pro bono practice.  Since retirement, I volunteer at a low income clinic at the University of Maryland School of Law to mentor students and provide legal advice to persons who visit the clinic.  I also serve on the board of directors of the Mount Vernon Place Conservancy, Inc. and assist on legal matters for that organization in its program of restoration of Mount Vernon Place, the historic square in downtown Baltimore.  As my wife, Ann Teaff, is in her fifteenth year as Head of The Harpeth Hall School in Nashville, Tennessee, I generally commute to Nashville on weekends.  We have not missed a weekend in all those years, and cherish both the Baltimore and Nashville communities and our friends in each.

     In the past several years, Ann and I have travelled to China, India, Bhutan (hiking), Argentina (horseback riding), Corsica (hiking and bicycling), and Greece (hiking).  We have chaperoned educational travel and service trips with Harpeth Hall’s between semester program called Winterim to South Africa and to Kenya.  My retirement gift from DLA Piper LLP (US) was a European bicycle trip.  Despite having organized and taken approximately a dozen long distance bicycle trips in parts of the United States, Canada, and Eastern and Western Europe, we had never taken a commercial bicycle trip.  We took a bicycle trip with VBT to the islands of Hvar and Brac in Croatia and plan another VBT bicycle trip this coming summer to the Czech Republic.  Last summer, sparked by Ann’s desire for many years to investigate family roots in Lebanon, we traveled to Lebanon to meet Ann’s second cousin and visit the small villages of Deir el Ahmar and Hadeth el-Joubbeh in central Lebanon from where Ann’s mother’s parents emigrated to the United States in the late 1880’s.
Winterim 2013 provided the opportunity to engage in community service in Lwala, Kenya, a community of about 3,000 residents who live in mud huts lacking running water and electricity.  Lwala has benefitted from medical and educational improvements initiated by two graduates of Vanderbilt Medical School who grew up in Lwala, received scholarship assistance to attend Dartmouth College, and wanted to give back to the community by effecting the dream of their parents to establish a community medical clinic, now expanded to a hospital.

     This summer, we took another VBT bicycle trip – this time in the Czech Republic, Germany, and Austria.  In this picture, my wife Ann and I are standing on a bridge between Neuburg, Germany and the Wernstein, Austria sides of the Inn River.  Wernstein, Austria is in the background.

     Our children David and Cindy live in Berkeley, California, and we have had recent adventures with them in Scottsdale, Arizona and Death Valley and San Francisco, California.  Our grandson Tyler resides in Portugal with whom we Skype on a regular basis.

     To preserve for our children's knowledge of family past and people, I wrote a book about my childhood, my parents, and the people involved in my childhood.  Last year, I self-published the book as Growing Up in Gettysburg – Lessons Learned in a Small Town to bring to date family material we already had from about 1740 to 1900.

     One of Princeton’s gifts to me was the excitement of intellectual learning.  I have continued taking courses which a group of us organizes of literature, music, and art study, which are a great delight, and now number 130 courses over 24 years.

     Because we are blessed with good health, life is fabulous and continues to allow us to spend time with family and friends, engage in outdoor adventures, enjoy frequent travel, and contribute to our work in our Baltimore and Nashville communities.

Donald P. McPherson, III

Back to Checked Back Into Camp
Back to The Lodge