4-H Camps in North Carolina

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Anita-Alta—Opened in 1975 in Caldwell County, the camp was named after Mr. and Mrs. Luther Robinson's children (Anita and Alta) who died of polio. After the children's death, the couple donated their 375-acre farm to the 4-H organization for other children's enjoyment.

Betsy-Jeff Penn 4-H Center—This facility near Reidsville was dedicated in 1964. It was originally owned by the Consolidated University of North Carolina. Chinqua-Penn Plantation, on which the center is located, had been given to the university by the Penn family in 1959.

Carteret County 4-H Camp—The land at this site was purchased in 1962 by the 4-H development corporation.

Manteo/Roanoke Island—This camp was established in 1946 in Dare County. The site was previously a Naval Air Station. It was acquired from the federal government after World War II and converted to a 4-H Camp by R. S. Smith (the local farm demonstration agent) and the state 4-H organization. The camp was also home to the theater troupe that renacted The Lost Colony, a symphonic drama by Paul Green that depicted the story of Sir Walter Raleigh's colony on Roanoke Island. In 1971 4-H relinquished control of the camp after the beach began to erode, and the facility became a Marine Science Center.

Millstone—Colloquially referred to as "The Rocks," the camp was developed in 1936 by the Resettlement Administration on part of the 60,000 acre Sandhills Resettlement Project. It was completed in 1938. Millstone was situated on land previously known as Camp Hoffman, and it derived its name from the huge granite stones in the area. It became the official site for the Wildlife Conservation Camp in 1939.

Mitchell—The camp opened in 1956 for African Americans on Hammocks Beach near Swansboro in Onslow County. The Negro 4-H Foundation had been founded to raise the money for it. Before it was officially named, it was designated as the "Hammock's Beach Project."

Schaub—This camp was named for Ira O. Schaub, long-time agricultural leader and director of the North Carolina Agricultural Extension Service for twenty-six years. The camp opened in 1950 near Waynesville in western North Carolina. It was located at the Mountain Branch Experiment Station, which adjoined the State Test Farm.

Sertoma 4-H Camp—This camp is located in Stokes County near Danbury. It was dedicated in 1982. It is adjacent to Hanging Rock State Park, twenty-five miles north of Winston-Salem. This is an official 4-H camp.

Swannanoa—This camp is located in Buncombe County. It was originally twelve agriculturally marginal acres that were part of the Swannanoa Branch Station, and these were turned over to 4-H in 1928. They became the site of the 4-H camp a year later.

White Lake—This camp was established in 1926 in Bladen County. It was one of the first 4-H Camps in North Carolina.

Wildlife Conservation Conference/4-H Forestry Camp—For several years 4-H held a week long camp that was specifically focused on wildlife and forestry management. It was held at various 4-H camps, including Indian Springs in 1938 and Camp Millstone in 1939 and later years.

Other Camps

In the historical records of 4-H in North Carolina, several camps have been mentioned. Some of these are listed below, but no additional information could be found regarding them.

Bertie County Camp—There is a photograph of this camp dated 1941.

Buncombe County 4-H Camp—There is a photograph of this camp dated 1921. This date is too early for the camp to be Swannanoa.

Caldwell County 4-H Forestry Camp—There is a picture of this camp dated 1930.

Chowan Camp—Documents show that preparations were made to conduct a 4-H camp at the Naval Air Station in Edenton in the spring of 1947.

Crabtree Creek Camp—There is a photograph of this camp dated 1935. It began as a recreation area and was controlled by the National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior. The camp could be rented out and was not used for purely 4-H camp purposes.

Davidson-Rowan 4-H Camp—There is a photograph of this camp dated 1927.

Durham County 4-H Camp—There is a photograph of this camp dated 1931.

Hicone 4-H Camp—There is a photograph of this camp dated 1928. It may have been called the Guilford-Rockingham 4-H Camp.

Indian Springs Camp—The Wildlife Conservation Conference was held there in 1938. This camp was mentioned in only a few 4-H publications.

Jackson-Cherokee Encampment—This camp was listed only in "Four-H Club Camps" (Extension Circular No. 164), February 1927.

Jamestown—This camp was located in Halifax County, according to a 1942 pamphlet.

John's River Camp—This camp was in Caldwell County, according to a photograph dated 1938.

Kerr Lake Camp—This camp was situated on John H. Kerr Reservoir, which was completed in 1953 by the Army Corp of Engineers. The reservoir spans the Virginia-North Carolina border. The Kerr Lake Camp was associated with North Carolina State College and was used as a leadership training campground and educational facility. In the early 1960s, the camp became available for recreational use.

Lake Waccamaw 4-H Camp—This camp was listed in "Four-H Club Camps" (Extension Circular No. 164), February 1927. It may have been used as early as 1920.

Leach—This Beaufort County camp was used in 1941.

Neuse Forest 4-H Camp—This Craven County camp was listed in "Four-H Club Camps" (Extension Circular No. 164), February 1927.

Polk County 4-H Club Camp—This camp was first used in 1923.

Presbyterian Point Camp—This was a church camp for Granville Presbytery and located on the shores of Lake Kerr. It was used by 4-H in 1958.

Whispering Pines Camp—This camp was located in Wake County, near Cary. It was a 4-H camp designated specifically for African Americans during the 1940s and 1950s.

Readers may also be interested in our essays on the history of 4-H in North Carolina and 4-H Short Course, Club Week, and State Congress.

[compiled by: Nathan Crowe]

Woman pouring water in a wash tub, preparing to do laundry Hazel Carris of Pitt County at her 4-H exhibit, "Drink Your Way to Health" L. R. Harrill and others launching the U.S.S. Tyrrell on July 10th, 1944 in Wilmington, N.C. L. R. Harrill revealing the plaque placed on an ambulance donated to the United States Army Medical Department in honor of former 4-H club members now serving in the armed forces