In the Spring of 1910, just a few months after the Boy Scouts of America was chartered by congress the scouting movement began in Trenton
Gilbert H. Roehrig of the YMCA organized Troop 1 with Walter L. Hughes, a student of Princeton University, as scoutmaster. Troop 12 of Prospect Street Presbyterian Church, was organized in 1912 and is still going strong.
In 1914, Dr. William A. Wetzel, former principal of Trenton High School organized a second class council in Trenton. A first class council, later known as the Trenton Mercer Area Council, was organized in 1916 with Samual Haverstick as president. Other early leaders in the council were James Kerney, General Murray, Samuel Levy, Howard L. Hughes, William E. Green, J. Connor French, S.E. Kaufman, MG. Rockhill, D.W. Scammell, J.H. Sines, William E. Green, Owen Moore Jr., and William Burgess Jr.
The first scout camp was held in 1914 on Marshall's Island near Frenchtown. The fee was $3 per week with 68 scouts attending.
In 1916, William Burgess Jr. was hired as the first Council Executive at a salary of $1,500 per year. Miss Klowski was hired as the first secretary at $9 per week and the board authorized the new executive to purchase a typewriter for her. The council was incorporated in 1925.
Troop 43 of the Nassau Presbyterian Church organized in 1920, was the first troop in Princeton. By 1948 there were 10 troops and 300 scouts. In 1949 the Princeton District merged with the Trenton District to become the Mercer County District. Dr. Frank Fornoff, scoutmaster of Troop 43 for the past 26 years, was honored by his scouts on Feb. 27, 1982 for his many years of service. Still a relatively young man, he has no intention of retiring.
Scouting started in Lambertville in 1925 and by 1926 each of the Lambertville churches had a troop. Frenchtown, Stockton, Clinton and High Bridge had the scouting program by 1926.
note: Thanks to David Wolverton, Chairman, New Jersey Scout Museum, for the following information: A First Class Council had a professional (paid) Scout Executive, whereas a Second Class council was all-volunteer. Apparently, National treated them somewhat differently (one example is that a council could not obtain an OA lodge charter unless it was a First Class council).
Mall Show, Introduction
Mall Show 1982, Page 2
September 12, 1999