Gateway to the Mountains
Chapter 32: Clubs and Organizations
Thurmont has over 30 clubs and organizations, embodying fraternal, civic, educational, youth, social, religious,
business and sports organizations. Each of these have in their own way contributed to community life. Included among these are the following:
Thurmont Lions Club
The Lions Club was the first service club to be organized in the community. It was chartered by Lions International on
November 1, 1929 and has done an outstanding job in sponsoring the local boy scout organization. A more detailed account of this organization
may be found in another chapter.
The Thurmont Jaycees is a very active organization and deeply interested in community betterment. They have sponsored
many worthwhile projects and done much in developing leadership among the young business men of the community. This organization is looked
upon as the Chamber of Commerce of Thurmont and a more detailed account of this wide-awake organization will be found in another chapter. In
1967 the Thurmont Jaycees, feeling some-thing should be done to help promote and advertise the scenic, recreational and historic points of
interest in and around Thurmont, published a Visitor's Guide, which has met with great success.
The Boy Scouts
On February 8, 1939, twenty-three members of the Local Boy Scout Troop No. 11 received their membership cards and pins
in a most impressive investiture service, conducted by the scout execu-
tive for the district, in the Thurmont High School Auditorium. This marked the beginning of scouting in Thurmont.
Joseph E. Curfman was the first Scout Master. During the war scouting activities were discontinued but were resumed in 1944 and have been
active ever since. Under the guidance of different leaders, the scouts arc learning the responsibilities which are needed in building good
character and preparing them for manhood.
In May 1940, Miss Ethel Crawford was responsible for organizing the local Girl Scout troop. The interest shown was
tremendous and the first troop was composed of over forty members. In 1947 a second troop was organized and both troops were sponsored by the
Room Mothers organization.
The Thurmont Cub Scouts is an active organization and has been doing a wonderful job in preparing the younger boys of
the community for the day when they will become an active part of the Boy Scouts. Their annual paper drive and other activities together with
the sponsorship of the burning of the greens have become a regular part of community life.
Thurmont Riding Club, Inc.
Although this organization is fairly new in the community, it is already making a name for itself. In 1967 this
organization held the first annual horse show, which was very successful. During the summer and fall months, the Thurmont Riding Club sponsors
many rides which provide fun and relaxation for those interested in horse-back riding.
Early in the 1920's the Grange was an active organization. In 1946 the Thurmont Grange was organized with a membership
of 55. It has been active in constructing bus shelters for the school children, organized a health clinic in the community and in recent
years has sponsored the Annual Community Show which has be-come one of the outstanding events of the year.
Brotherhood of Jungle Cocks
This organization was first begun in April 1939, with a member-ship of 40 men. The Thurmont branch is a part of a
nationally known organization which is interested in the preservation of wild life and in teaching the younger generation the art of true
Future Farmers of America
The Thurmont Chapter of the Future Farmers of America received its charter on March 14, 1930 and has since won many
con-tests throughout the county and the state as well. They help with the Thurmont Grange in planning and organizing many of the events of the
annual Community Show.
The American Legion
The Edwin C. Creeger, Jr. Post 168 of the American Legion was organized in November 1945 with 54 charter members. It
has been most active in community life through the years and sponsors the annual Memorial Day celebration which includes a parade and the
placing of flags on the graves of all veterans.
The American Legion Auxiliary is also active in community work and is a part of the local Legion organization.
Each church in the community is made up of many organizations which are very active in helping to carry on the work of
The Thurmont Ministerial Association is active in sponsoring a number of events pertaining to the religious life in
the community which includes the union worship services held during the year. They also sponsor inter-church basketball and softball leagues
which have met with great success.
I. O. O. F. Lodge No. 46
The Good Samaritan Lodge No. 46 of the International Order of Odd Fellows was holding meetings as early as 1854. It
was in 1870 when they purchased the old Academy building on East Main Street and remodeled it for their use.
Rebekah Lodge No. 67
The Margaret Jones Rebekah Lodge No. 67 was organized in March of 1921 and records show that 114 charter members made
up the first organization meeting. This group helps to support many civic projects and the I.O.O.F. Home in Frederick, Md.
Thurmont War Memorial Commission
This organization was commissioned several years ago to work up plans for a war memorial honoring the many citizens of
the community who served in World War II and the Korean War. The Commission is made up of members of the various community organizations and
is presently engaged in working out the final plans for the erection of a memorial in Memorial Park.
The Woman's Club
The Woman's Club of Thurmont was organized back in 1906 with literary and social objectives. The first president of
this organization was Mrs. Harvey D. Beachley. Today this organization is still an active part of community life and lives strongly by its
mot-to: "Through reading comes knowledge, with knowledge a broader life."
There are countless other organizations within the community, each having its purpose and dedicated to the enjoyment
of life in a small town. All such organizations and clubs are a part of community life and have contributed much in making Thurmont a most
enjoyable place to live. The many events sponsored by these organizations provide a wide variety of events during the
year, some of which have gained wide recognition throughout the county.
Thurmont Public Library
On February 25, 1956, the Thurmont Public Library was organized. A home on West Main Street was purchased and
renovated for use as a library. Through the years this library has provided many services for its patrons and today it far exceeds the
expectations of its founders.
For eight years the library was manned by a number of volunteer workers who gave willingly of their time. In 1964 the
local library joined the Frederick County Library System and the job was taken over by two librarians who were paid by the county. In 1967,
one librarian was placed on a full-time basis.
Plans are now in the making for moving the local library into larger quarters which will provide the community with a
more up-to-date facility and enable the library to provide additional services to its many patrons. This organization has served the community
well during its first twelve years and Thurmont can be justly proud of this facility.
When organized in 1956 the First Board of Directors of the lo-cal library was composed of Jacob Bader, William Houck,
Herman Shook, Ross V. Smith, Mrs. Carl Gall, Harry Zentz, Henry Tester-man, Mrs. Victor Kifer, C. Ray Weddle, D. S. Weybright, Mrs. G. Osmum,
Mrs. Mervin Green, Mrs. Milton Carback, Mrs. Saylor Weybright, Mrs. Ernest P. Hammaker, and Miss Laura Sylvester.
Thurmont Homemakers Club
The Thurmont Homemakers were organized in 1936 under the direction of Miss Florence Williams, the Frederick County
Home Demonstration Agent. This local group is affiliated with the county organization, and has been a very active part of community life. From
time to time they have sponsored many worthwhile projects and have gained wide recognition throughout the county.
Thurmont P. T. A.
The Thurmont Parent-Teacher Association has contributed much to the community in providing many facilities to the
local schools which might otherwise not have been possible. This organization is deeply interested in maintaining a close relationship between
the parent and teacher and in working out any local problems which might arise from time to time. They have on occasions appeared before the
Frederick County Commissioners, expressing the many educational needs of the north end of the county. Together with others in the community,
the Thurmont P.T.A. has done much in helping to obtain the new Catoctin High School, now under construction just north of the community. This
new facility will be used jointly by Emmitsburg and Thurmont and will aid greatly in meeting the educational needs of this fast growing
| Chapter 33: The Presidential Retreat (Camp David)
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