Park View History: Boy Scout Troop 49

Detail of photograph showing Drum and Bugle Corps Troop 49 at Mount Vernon, 1925

I’ve often wondered why the Park View area doesn’t have any chapters of Boy Scouts of America. Perhaps there are some and I’m just not aware of them. In using the BSA Local Council Locator tool, the closest match I was able to find was in Bethesda, Md. I don’t know if its an organization that fell out of favor or no longer has relevance, but I would think that area youth would definitely benefit from the scouts.

In digging a little deeper into it, I was able to find that Park View once had an active Boy Scouts troop that was well regarded. This was particularly true in the 1920s through the 1940s with Park View’s Troop 49’s drum and bugle corps which performed at neighborhood celebrations as well as more public events – including Flag Day parades and wreath laying ceremonies at Arlington’s Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and Washington’s grave at Mount Vernon.

The images shown here date to February 23, 1925, which marked the fourth annual patriotic pilgrimage to the tomb of George Washington at Mount Vernon. At that event more than a thousand scouts made the trip due to the low fare granted by the railway company and the free admission to the grounds for the anniversary ceremonies. Scouts left from 14th and B Streets, NW at 9:15 a.m.

As with previous years, Park View’s drum and bugle corp, under the direction of Scoutmaster John S. Cole and Sergeant Henry Loveless, lead the procession in the march from Mount Vernon’s gates to the tomb. At the tomb, Eagle Scout J. Wilson Leverton sounded the calls.

Following the commemorative exercises the day was spent in test passing and games outside the Mount Vernon reservation. In the photograph of the scouts in front of Washington’s home members of Troop 49 are easily identified due to their drums and bugles.

Members of Troop 49 are easy to recognize due to their drums and bugles

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