Order of the Arrow

Klahican Lodge #331 History

The Klahican Lodge, Order of the Arrow, Boy Scouts of America was chartered on January 22, 1946. From 1946 until 1948 the Lodge held their Ordeals with Occoneechee Lodge. The first Lodge Chief J.D. Barnes was elected in 1947. In 1950 Joe Barnes and Dick Auger coined the name "Klahican". Klahican means Venus Fly Trap in the Delaware Indian language. The Venus Fly Trap is indigenous only to the Cape Fear Council Area. It is a meat eating plant that is known the world over for both its uniqueness and beauty.


The first Ordeal was held at Camp Klahican (at Salters Lake, near Jones Lake, Bladen County) in 1948 Salters Lake (Camp Klahican) was the Cape Fear Council's first Summer Camp and was used between 1948 and 1949. In 1950 Camp Tom Upchurch was opened for Summer Camp and the Lodge's activities moved to Upchurch until it closed in 1974.

In 1978 the first Ordeal at the Cape Fear Council Scout Reservation was held (also known as the Rice Property). Camp Bowers, located on the Cape Fear Councils Scout Reservation was opened for Summer Camp in 1981. Camp Bowers is named for the late Lawrence Bowers of Whiteville, N. C., the former President of the Southeast Region BSA.

In 1968, Klahican Lodge hosted its first Section 6A Conclave. The gathering was held at Camp Durant in Neuse, N. C. Although Klahican hosted this Conclave there were only 6 Lodge members in attendance and the total Conclave attendance was 38 Arrowmen In 1969 there was no Conclave held so the Lodge hosted a Lodge Fellowship at Camp Tom Upchurch

Klahican hosted its second Conclave in 1978. The Section 3A Conclave took place at Fort Caswell Baptist Assembly at Fort Caswell, N. C. Approximately 500 Arrowmen were in attendance. This was a unusual Conclave because the Arrowmen were quartered in houses and did not camp. E. Urner Goodman, founder of the Order of the Arrow was the honored guest. Dr. Goodman delivered a most impressive speech after the Section Elections on Saturday night. Rick Burton, National Vice-Chief and a member of Nayawin Rar Lodge was also present.

In 1988 the Lodge hosted the Section 7 Conclave at Camp Bowers. Over 1,000 Arrowmen were in attendance.

Since Klahican Lodge was founded, eight members have held Section offices. Mike Simmons was Vice Chief in 1961 for Section 6A, next Billy Farmer was Section 6A Chief in 1969. Trip Ruth and Brad Starr held the 3A Section Chief job in 1975 and 1978 respectively. Martin Willard was the SE Region Chief in 1980 and Craig Buffkin was Section 7 Vice Chief in 1984 and Section Chief in 1986. Patrick Boykin and Jack Kittinger have both been Section 7 Vice Chiefs.

In 1980, Brad Starr was elected as the National Chief of the Order of the Arrow he served in this capacity until December 1982. At Rutgers University in New Brunswick, N. J., he passed the bonnet to the next National Chief Bob Wade