We’ve covered work by members of Boy Scout Troop 100 to improve our neighborhood. The troop itself is also celebrating an anniversary befitting its number: 100 years. Mary Beth Ray writes about the recent reception marking the occasion.
by Mary Beth Ray
Over 100 friends and fans gathered to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Boy Scout Troop 100, the oldest in Washington, DC, on Saturday, July 1.
The keynote speaker was DC Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton, and the centennial celebration was held in Stone Hall at National Presbyterian Church on Nebraska Avenue, NW.
Norton praised the history, legacy and service of Troop 100, and she invited the Scouts to visit her at the U.S. House of Representatives, “I want these boys to sit where I stand where laws are made,” she said. “And I hope my two grandsons become Scouts.”
DC Shadow Senator Michael Brown, a former Boy Scout, also made remarks, saying “Scouts embody many wonderful traits including cleanliness, honesty, kindness, reverence, et cetera, and I am trying to live these out just as much as I can, despite the fact that I’m a politician.”
The five-hour reception included the largest display of scouting memorabilia in DC since 1937. The artifacts included a rare Troop 100 flag, one of only three Scout Troop flags known from that era. There was also an extremely rare 1910 Boy Scout uniform, and the coveted Washington Post trophy won by the troop in 1922.
Scout historian Peter Bielak explained that originally Boy Scouts had to agree to volunteer to rescue people from burning buildings, so in the early years, many members of the DC Fire Department were Boy Scouts. Scouts also served as tour guides in DC buildings.
A video made by current Boy Scout Marco Errico recounted the last 100 years of the troop with original photographs and period music. Several former scoutmasters, including Richard C. Evans, 95, delivered remarks, along with current Scoutmaster John LeMon.
Boy Scouts of America Troop 100 meets at St. Ann Roman Catholic Church in Tenleytown, and many of the Scouts, both current and former, are residents of Northwest Washington.
Troop 100 has graduated 130 Eagle Scouts, the top honor. For the first time in its history, Boy Scout Troop 100 awarded five Eagle Scouts their wings in a Court of Honor last December. The recipients had each been involved in scouting for at least seven years, and they completed rigorous requirements including a minimum of 21 merit badges, a community service project and countless hours of leadership activities. Only 2 percent of Boy Scouts go on to earn the rank of Eagle Scout. The ceremony was led by Scoutmaster Le Mon, who has served as such for the troop for 20 years. Under Le Mon’s leadership, Troop 100 has graduated 36 Eagle Scouts.
Past community service projects have included renovation of parts of buildings, parks, and parking lots across the city, from Van Ness to Palisades to Fort Totten National Park in Northeast DC and beyond. Over the years, dozens of Troop 100 Scouts have traveled to Philmont Scout Reservation in New Mexico, where many hiked over 100 miles in 10 days on a trail over 6,000 feet in elevation.
Troop 100 is the oldest Boy Scout Troop in our nation’s capital and one of the oldest in the nation. Its goal is to teach boys leadership and environmental awareness through outdoor camping activities and community service. Troop 100 was proud to serve as volunteers at the 2013 Inauguration of President Barack Obama. Troop 100 is non-denominational and welcomes all boys.