In 2005 a core group of Scouters scattered across the country sought permission from Philmont to post recent Itinerary Guides and Guidebooks to Adventure on a dedicated website on the Internet. The driving motivation for this effort were numerous requests from Scouters on the Philmont List-Serve who wanted information on their boyhood treks. The professional staff granted permission in November of 2005 and the “PEAKS PROJECT” was initiated, at: http://philmontdocs.watchu.org/
What began as a modest effort to post select “trek” documents rapidly grew far beyond the original expectations. In addition to a complete set of all dated Itinerary Guides and Guidebooks to Adventure 1965-2010, the site now offers a variety of other Philmont-related documents as well as newspaper and magazine articles. Most of these items are long out of print and are currently available only in the Philmont Museum and Seton Memorial Library or in private collections. Scouters from all over the country have submitted items to be scanned and posted, and subsequently either returned or donated to the Seton Library depending on the owner’s wishes. Many other items have been purchased off of eBay or craigslist; these have all been donated to the Seton Library after scanning. These donations have helped Philmont recover from the loss of many documents in the 1965 flood at Fish Camp (which had been the repository for many Philmont records). In appreciation, the Seton Library has also allowed complete access to their archives, helping to fill in various gaps.
The posted archives cover a wide range of topics; however, there are still many gaps, especially operational guides from 1938 through about 1950. We encourage everyone to explore the site, and anyone with unique documents not already posted on the site to contact Tom Wills (2004 Logistics staff) at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss contributing items of interest. Items of interest are any official document that is not already posted, including but not limited to Leader’s, Advisor’s, Planning, Ranger, Staff, and Camp Director Guides, maps, promotional flyers, just about anything to do with Cavalcades, and articles about Philmont from the mass media.
All PSA members are encouraged to visit the site and enjoy the posted material, and also to let others know of this resource. Do a little research, learn more about Philmont’s colorful Scouting history, or simply re-live that trek you took in your youth.
~Dr. Bob Klein