|French Creek Council|
|Owner||Boy Scouts of America|
The French Creek Council serves Boy Scouts in six counties in northwestern Pennsylvania and one township in Ohio. The council was organized in 1972 from a merger of the former Washington Trail Council of Erie, Custaloga Council of Sharon and Colonel Drake Council of Oil City, Pennsylvania. It has headquarters in Erie, Pennsylvania.
The French Creek Council owns and operates a 525-acre (2.12 km2)[ citation needed ] facility known as Custaloga Town Scout Reservation, located along French Creek in Mercer and Venango counties.
The area of Custaloga Town was inhabited by members of the Wolf Clan of the Seneca under the leadership of Chief Guyasutha, who served as the League Deputy or "half king" on the Allegheny-Ohio. Guyasutha was the uncle of Chief Cornplanter and, according to one account, may be buried on the grounds of Custaloga Town Scout Reservation.
Chief Custaloga of the Wolf Clan of Delawares arrived at the present site of Custaloga Town Scout Reservation in the mid 18th century and built a sizeable village here, which became his principal seat. Custaloga's name first appeared in western Pennsylvania's history in "George Washington's Journal of 1753". When Washington arrived at Fort Machault in the village of Venango (present Franklin, PA), Custaloga was in charge of the wampum of his nation.
Since Custaloga had aided Chief Pontiac in his rebellion, the white settlers were wary of the actions of Custaloga and asked Guyasutha to live among his people at Custaloga's Town to maintain a watchful eye on Custaloga's actions.
On November 29, 1778, Colonel James Smith led an expedition from Fort Pitt to Custaloga's Town, but found the Indian town evacuated. After this date very little is recorded about Custaloga. Captain Pipe had become Custaloga's successor as leader of the Wolf Clan of the Delaware. Some believe he lived in Ohio after he left Custaloga's Town.
The first log cabin on site was built in 1794 and the Heydrick Homestead was started by Dr. Charles Heydrick in 1820. This nearly 200-year-old building is still in use by the French Creek Council. The Heydrick farm continued to be operated through 1946.
In 1963, the Mercer County Council purchased the land for the development of a camp to replace Camp Kiondashawa. Jim Dunlop was president for four years during the fund drive and construction of the reservation. Carlton Hutchison was chairman of the camp fund drive. John Gross, the person who found this site, was the architect of buildings and camp layout. Vern Smith was camp development chairman for Mercer County Council.
Custaloga Town Scout Reservation opened to Scout camping in the summer of 1967. A year later, in 1968 the first Scout summer camp season was held, with Dr. Frederick J. Brenner serving as Camp Director. Custaloga Town Scout Reservation was officially dedicated on Saturday, July 19, 1969.
In the summer of 2018, Custaloga Town celebrated its 50th Anniversary with a camp-wide celebration. Concurrent with this was the official ribbon cutting ceremony for a newly remodeled bridge that crosses Deer Creek.
A Scout reservation refers to a camping facility that include more than one camp. As such, Custaloga Town includes Camp Hank Forker—which is and has always been the only camp. It is for this reason that the name Hank Forker is almost always ignored on promotional materials, patches, and programs. Plans for a second camp on the reservation have been in the making for many, many years. However, camp is always referred to as Custaloga Town.
Mercer County Council, which had been renamed the Custaloga Council, would later merge with Washington Trail and Colonel Drake councils to form the French Creek Council. After the closings of the other two former council camps, Sequoyah- on the shores of Lake Erie, and Coffman- now a YMCA camp in Venango and Clarion counties, Custaloga Town became the main camping facility for the French Creek Council.
Each year Custaloga Town Scout Reservation hosts hundreds of Scouts from all over the United States. Mostly the Northeastern part of the United States.
The Order of the Arrow Lodge for the French Creek Council is Langundowi Lodge #46. This Lodge came into existence in 1972 with the merger of the former Eriez Lodge #46 (Erie, PA), Hoh-Squa-Sa-Gah-Da Lodge #251 (Sharon, PA) and the Skanondo Inyan Lodge #256 (Oil City, PA). The name "Langundowi" means "Peaceful One" in Lenape. The Lodge totem is the Iroquois Great Tree of Peace. Langundowi Lodge has been a strong and integral part of the French Creek Council since the merger and continues to be a leader in the local, sectional and national levels.
Venango County is a county located in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. As of the 2010 census, the population was 54,984. Its county seat is Franklin. The county was created in 1800 and later organized in 1805.
Scouting in Oklahoma has a long history, from the 1910s to the present day, serving thousands of youth in programs that suit the environment in which they live.
Scouting in Indiana has a long history, from the 1910s to the present day, serving thousands of youth in programs that suit the environment in which they live.
Scouting in Ohio has a long history, from the 1908 to the present day, serving thousands of youth in programs that suit the environment in which they live.
Scouting in West Virginia has a long history, from the 1910s to the present day, serving thousands of youth in programs that suit the environment in which they live.
Scouting in Maryland has a long history, from the 1910s to the present day, serving millions of youth with activities that have adapted to the changing cultural environment but have always been rooted in an active outdoor program.
Scouting in New Jersey has a long history, from the 1910s to the present day, serving thousands of youth in programs that suit the environment in which they live. The second Boy Scouts of America National Headquarters was in North Brunswick, although it was referred to in BSA publications as being in neighboring New Brunswick.
Scouting in New York has a long history, from the 1910s to the present day, serving thousands of youth in programs that suit the environment in which they live. The first National Boy Scouts of America (BSA) Headquarters was in New York City, and the Girl Scouts of the USA National Headquarters is currently located at 420 5th Avenue, New York, New York.
Scouting in Pennsylvania has a long and rich tradition, from 1908 to the present day, serving thousands of youth in programs that suit the environment in which they live.
French Creek is a tributary of the Allegheny River in northwestern Pennsylvania and western New York in the United States.
Northwestern Pennsylvania is a region in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, containing 10 counties. The city of Erie is the business center and cultural hub of the region. The compiled population of the region was estimated to be 938,516 in 2015. Although the only county with population growth was Butler, the deficit for all other counties was within 3%. The region also includes the Erie-Meadville, PA Combined Statistical Area.
The Cradle of Liberty Council (#525) is a Boy Scouts of America council created in 1996 with the merger of the former Philadelphia Council and the former Valley Forge Council.
The Chester County Council is a Boy Scouts of America service council that serves members of the Cub Scouts, Scouts BSA, and Venturing programs in Chester County, Pennsylvania and Northeastern Cecil County, Maryland. It is one of the oldest councils in the nation, and is one of two single-county councils left in Pennsylvania, the other being Chief Cornplanter Council in Warren, PA.
Central New Jersey Council is a former local Boy Scouts of America council that served the central New Jersey area, spanning across the Counties of Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex and Warren.
The New Birth of Freedom Council is a council of the Boy Scouts of America serving South-Central Pennsylvania. The council was formed by a merger of York-Adams Area Council and Keystone Area Council on April 1, 2010.
Custaloga, also known as Packanke, was a chief of the Delaware (Lenape) tribe in the mid-18th century. He was a member of the Wolf Clan through his mother. Captain Pipe was his nephew and succeeded him as chief.
Seneca Waterways Council (SWC) is a local council of the Boy Scouts of America that serves youth in Ontario, Wayne, Seneca, Yates, and Monroe Counties in Western New York. The current Council President is Lew Heisman. The current Council Scout Executive is Stephen Hoitt.
Northeastern Pennsylvania Council, with headquarters in Moosic, Pennsylvania, formed in 1990 from the merger of Forest Lakes Council and Penn Mountains Council of the Boy Scouts of America. It covers the metropolitan area of Scranton and Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania. The council serves Lackawanna, Luzerne, Pike, Wayne, Wyoming counties, and portions of Susquehanna county.
The Lincoln Heritage Council (LHC) is a local council of the Boy Scouts of America serving 64 counties in four states: Kentucky, Indiana, Illinois, and Tennessee.
The Hawk Mountain Council serves over 8,000 young men and women in one of several Boy Scout programs in Berks, Schuylkill, and Carbon counties in Pennsylvania. The council has headquarters near Reading, PA.