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Something for everyone at Ten Mile River Museum

By Mike Vreeland
Posted 8/31/21

NARROWSBURG — The Ten Mile River (TMR) Scout Museum is much more than a history of Scouting on the TMR Scout Reservation. Located on the TMR Scout Reservation at Headquarters on Crystal Lake …

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Something for everyone at Ten Mile River Museum

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NARROWSBURG — The Ten Mile River (TMR) Scout Museum is much more than a history of Scouting on the TMR Scout Reservation. Located on the TMR Scout Reservation at Headquarters on Crystal Lake Road (County Road 26), it features displays of area geology, early Native American and settlement history, as well as Scouting history and memorabilia.

Visitors can learn about the history of the area through the displays of Native American artifacts such as arrowheads, stone tools, and pottery dating back to 4000 B.C. On the TMR reservation, evidence has been found of trade between the Lenape, a coastal group known for their shell beadwork, and the Mohawk, known for their furs.

Another section of the museum is dedicated to presenting geological information of the western part of Sullivan County. Large geological maps of the underlying land structure of the area are on display, as well as rock samples.

Also on display are the results of the 2014 BioBlitz, a 24 hour period during which a large, diverse team of scientists recorded every type of living organism they found evidence of, including plants, animals, insects and more.

Museum co-director Glenn Pontier explained, “If you are a local person and want to know more about the river valley, its nature, geology, biology we have it here at the museum.”

The history, in photos and records, shows work of the Civilian Conservation Core (CCC) camp on the reservation property in the 1930s, the only CCC camp not of federally owned land.

For Scouts, Scouters and other interested visitors, the museum offers a unique look at the history of the Boy Scout camps run by the five boroughs of NYC. There is also a trading post featuring scout memorabilia, maps and clothing.

A recently added display illustrates what the Boy Scouts did to assist public health during the 1918 pandemic.
Outside, on the museum grounds, is an original 8 person open-air sleeping cabin, complete with cots and early scouting equipment. A reproduction blockhouse lets visitors get a feel for the life of settlers in the pioneer era of the 1750s.

Museum co-directors Pontier and Ira Nagel are more than happy to assist visitors and share their knowledge of area history. While Pontier’s focus is on the local history, geology and biology, Nagel, a long-time camp staff and volunteer, is a treasure trove of TMR Scout history, so much so that he was recently inducted into the TMR Wall of Fame which honors those who have had a lasting impact on the TMR Scout Reservation.
More information about museum hours, tours, and special events can be found on the museum’s website: www.tmrmuseum.org.

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