Troop 137

Troop History

We all know how scouting was started, but do you know how scouting began in the Middle Tennessee area?

In 1910, Boy Scouts began to flourish in the United States. A couple of years later (in 1912) the founder of Boy Scouts, Lord Baden Powell, visited Nashville. It was during this visit to Nashville that Troop 1, which is still active today in Brentwood, was started. On February 13, 1912, a Troop from Franklin met a train carrying Lord Baden Powell.

In 1913, Professor Hal Peoples, of Battle Ground Academy died and the scouts in his Troop marched in his funeral procession. After his death, Mr. A. C. Killeffer, Rector of St. Pauls Episcopal Church, formed a Scout Troop until 1918. Mr. Bernard Campbell, Rector of St. Paul's replaced Mr. Killeffer and served as Scoutmaster until 1928. Dr. Dan German took over from Mr. Campbell and ran the Troop until 1936, where the Troop membership was 30 scouts. At that time, a man name Mr. Jim Woolridge, a retired Pullman Chef, bought the food, planned the menus and prepared the meals on all the camping trips. The Summer Camps were on the Harpeth River near Old Town, TN. at Fernvale. The Troop met on the Square and enjoyed tumbling and boxing. The only scout to earn their Eagle rank during this time was a boy named Sam Harrison.

About 1938, Mr. William Ewin started a Troop and they met in the Masonic Hall for 4 of 5 years. Several more boys were able to earn their Eagle rank, including a friend of John Green named Jack M. Pinkerton.

Around 1942, no male leadership could be found due to the war and the Troop folded. At the end of the World War II, a man moved to Franklin as principal of the Junior High School. His name was Mr. Buddy Mills and he started Troop 135 which was sponsored by the Presbyterian Church at Five Points. He recruited Mr. Glen Davis, a teacher, to help him run the Troop for several years.

In 1950, Mr. John Green and Mr. Jack Pinkerton returned to Franklin and started Troop 131, sponsored by the Methodist Church. There was also a Troop at the St. Pauls Episcopal Church, which was run by Rector Ray. Around 1956, Mr. John Green was asked to start another Troop for several boys that were unruly in town. Troop 153 was founded and ran until 1972. It was disbanded, as Mr. John Green needed to stay at home more.

In 1975, Mr. John Green was asked to start a Troop with 15 boys. It was at that time that Troop 137 was formed and sponsored by Fourth Avenue Church of Christ. The scouts meet at Mr. Green's home where they use an old tobacco Barn as their meeting place. As years passed the Troop grew and many activities were added around the Barn. Today, 100+ scouts enjoy a climbing wall, basketball, a rip line, rappelling, bee keeping, canoeing, ham radio, gardening, woodcarving, archery, rifle shooting, an observatory, knot room, tool room, first aid station, map room, library room and much more. During the meetings you will find boys all over the Barn, especially in the balconies, overlooking the main floor. Mr. John Green has served as the Scoutmaster since the Troop was founded. He has been a role model for literally thousands of boys in Middle Tennessee and he has helped over 90 boys earn their Eagle rank in Troop 137 alone.

If you have additional information about people and events relating to scouting in Middle Tennessee, then please forward it to the Troop Committee.

21 Nov 2016 JRG