Boy Scout Troop 147, Philadelphia PA
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Our History

Troop 147, located at 18th and Wolf Streets in South Philadelphia, was chartered to Trinity Lutheran Evangelical Church in May of 1915. Next year, Trinity Church and Troop 147 will celebrate over 100 years of partnership! The positive support of Trinity’s pastors and the volunteerism of our troop leaders have combined to serve the youth of South Philadelphia and its neighboring communities since 1915. What a noble reason to celebrate our 103rd year!

The seminal seed of this partnership between Trinity and Troop 147 began in 1915 when Trinity’s Pastor, Reverend Frank Urich, the “Father of Troop 147”, provided the scouting spirit to cultivate this 103rd year relationship. Our Troop was chartered May 21, 1915. The leaders and scouts listed below were the first to be chartered by Trinity and registered by the Philadelphia Council, which started in 1911.

Peter H. Bower – Scoutmaster 
Dr. John E. Scheid – Troop Committeeman 
Burton C. Simon – Troop Committeeman 
Rev. Frank M. Urich – Troop Committeeman 

William Blundin
Ernest Cronlund 
Charles Edmund 
Harry Erven 
Lewis Godschall 
Charles Judick 
Benjamin McConaghy 
Harry McMillan 
Raymond Stentz 
William Stevens 
Franklin Turney 
Chester West 

Since this original charter sponsoring twelve scouts, over 1500 scouts have been part of Troop 147! During this long adventure, twenty-three scoutmasters have proudly served Troop 147 and thirty-five scouts have reached scouting’s highest rank, Eagle Scout!

As the oldest Triune District troop still functioning in the Cradle of Liberty Council, we are currently only one of two troops still providing a scouting program in South Philadelphia. In 1990, Troop 147 was the fourth oldest scout troop in Philadelphia. Troop 1, located at All Saints Episcopal Church and part of the Frontier District (now the Roosevelt District) was the oldest chartered troop in Philadelphia. Troop 98, chartered to Beth Tefilath Israel Synagogue of Pennypack Park and part of the Delaware District (now the Roosevelt District) was the second oldest troop. The third oldest troop in 1990 was Troop 49, which was chartered by the Ninth Presbyterian Church in the Woodland District (now the Triune District). None of these troops exist today, making Troop 147 the oldest troop in Philadelphia.

During World Wars I and II, Troop 147 showed its esprit de corps through the sale of war bonds and the maintenance of Victory Gardens, one of which was located at 24th and Wolf Streets and another which is still at 18th and Wolf Street. In 1930, Troop 147 led the district in the Annual Inspection and was honored by the Council Scout Executive during this time for its participation for its lead in this inspection. During this time between the two world wars and under the direction of “Pop” Bender”, the Drum and Bugle Corps of Troop 147 was created. However, this group no longer exits, but the Victory Garden at 18th and Wolf, which is now a War Memorial, is still being maintained by our Troop. The beautification and refurbishing of this memorial was part of a recent Eagle Scout project and continues to be one which honors our veterans.

Camp Wilderness, in 1960, became the hallmark of our troop. It was through the efforts of scouters like Walter Deperven and Barry C. Bunch that this camp became a haven for our scouts. Although Trinity Church owns our troop camp, they have allowed our leaders to maintain and improve the property for camping. Camp Wilderness gives our scouts the unique opportunity to camp in the outdoors, fish, hike, and to improve their scouting skills.

Our troop is active in many community and BSA events. We are strong supporters of the Boy Scout Can Food Drive, we cook meals for the elderly with the Aid to Friends program, and our troop provides service to the Friends to Roosevelt Park, commonly known as the “Lakes”, to help keep the park clean. We have assisted the Pennsylvania Game and Fish authorities stocking trout in local streams, and assist with community activities, such as annual Girard Park Vendemia Festival, the Columbus Day Parade, the Thanksgiving Day Parade.

Troop 147’s proactive long and short term camping programs give our scouts the ability to enjoy the outdoors. We attend summer camp each year and participate in the annual spring beach jam in Wildwood, New Jersey. Our scouts and leaders sometimes elect to attend summer camp outside of Council, and we have been fortunate to camp at Rodney, Roosevelt, Hawk Mountain, and Adirondack scout reservations. We regularly participate in Council and District encampments like the Klondike Derby and weekend camporees. Our scout leaders provide high adventure programs, including backpacking on the Appalachia Train, rafting on the Lehigh River, and canoe trips on the Delaware River. We have camped at Gettysburg National Park and Hickory State Park on numerous occasions and now includes Hickory Run as one of our places to camp and fish during trout season.  In the past years, many of our scouts have attended the National Jamborees at Fort AP Hill in Virginia, and, this past year, two of our scouts and one leader attended the premier National Jamboree at Summit Bechtel Scout Reservation in Mount Hope, West Virginia. One of our scouts, in 2007, attended the 21st World Jamboree in Hylands Park, Essex, England.  The dedication and efforts of our leaders, coupled with the cooperation of our scouts, continue to make our outdoor scouting program a vibrant one that enriches our troop’s scouting experience.

Each year, in February, we salute Scout Sunday with a service at Trinity Lutheran Church. We follow this service with a coffee hour sponsored by our troop. Scout Sunday gives Troop 147 the opportunity to thank Trinity and their congregation for their support, for providing a place for our troop to meet, and for giving the youth of South Philadelphia the opportunity to enjoy a great scouting program.

Troop 147, for our 2014 re-chartering year, has registered fourteen scouts and fifteen adult leaders. We are proud of our partnership with Trinity Lutheran Evangelical Church and the support the church has given Troop 147 as we move into our 100 year anniversary. With Trinity’s continued partnership and support, Troop 147 plans to continue the work of bringing more boys into the adventure of Scouting!

Peter H. Brower                      1915-1916
Addison F. Bender, Jr.           1916-1929
Howard C. Alford                    1929-1937
John F. Bruce                          1937-1940
Edwin S. Hays, Jr.                  1940-1941
Herman Gould                        1941-1943
Albert Thielen                          1943-1946
Edwin S. Hays, Jr.                  1946-1947
Albert Thielen                          1947-1950
Walter Deperven                     1950-1970
William LaMonacca                1970-1972
Alex McClain, Jr.                      1972-1976
James Doyle, Sr.                     *
Silas Green                              *
Kevin Kelly                                *  
Anthony Curtosi, Sr.                *
Michael Aruffo                          *
Matthew Giannone                 *  
William Gahagan                   1980-1995  
Anthony J. Tangi                     1995-1998
Charles Diem                         1998-2000
George Schaefer                    2000-2003
Christopher J. Menna            2003-Present

*These Scoutmasters served between the years of 1976-1980.