Flashing with silver
Follow the wild goose flight
Dip, dip and swing
Sang we thus, my sisters and I, as under the glimmer of the Corn Moon we paddled along the silvery shores of Asquam near Lake Winne-pe-sau-kee in the White Mountains of New Hampshire. (Listen to a delightful clip of the song complete with loon call and sound effects here, sung by Michael Mitchell.
This is the first of three posts on the topic of the origins and early practices of the Camp Fire movement that Elsie J. Oxenham so loved and which she incorporated in many of her books, including some of the Abbey Girls books. I should have written these earlier, back when Maidlin was shown as being more active as Guardian of her Camp Fire but, life being what it is, I didn’t. In this first post I’ll give a bird’s eye view of some of the social forces in America around 1900 that contributed to the founding of the movement. In a later post I’ll look at the activities and structure of a Camp Fire. Finally, I’ll look at some of the series books for girls that feature Camp Fire—books that to some extent EJO was competing with for readers. [Read more…]