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Gateway to the Mountains

George Wireman

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.

Thurmont Jaycees

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.

Girl Scouts

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.

Cub Scouts

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.

Thurmont Grange

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 sportsmanship.

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.

Church Organizations

Each church in the community is made up of many organizations which are very active in helping to carry on the work of the church.

Ministerial Association

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."

Other Organizations

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 community.

Chapter Index | Chapter 33: The Presidential Retreat (Camp David)

If you have any Information or historical news clippings on events in the Thurmont Area, Please send them to us so we can included them in our archives. E-mail us at: history@mythurmont.net