“History of the Forest and Stream Club, Part II”

Carroll County Times article for 29 October 1995

By Jay A. Graybeal

Part I of this history of the Forest and Steam Club of Westminster appeared in last week’s column.

On July 11th 1896 the Club went into camp at the same place, Pinesburg, opposite the Club House on the Potomac River, etc. encampment lasted from 11th to 20 July inclusive, fishing was good but the behavior of some of the members and visitors very bad so much so that some of the members decided to fool the others before another encampment.
June 9th 1897 Club met and decided to go into camp on the Monocacy River at the old camp grounds commencing Aug. 7th for one week or longer as the portion of the members after adjournment a number of members asked consent to use a part of camp equipage prior to going into camp and decided to pitch our tents on the Potomac River near Big Pool commencing Saturday July 17th twelve members and visitors with Geo. A. Zucker [?] and the cooks accompanying us. We staid in camp one week and never had a more enjoyable time nor did we ever catch as many fish during our encampment. I must not close this year without saying the other encampment did not materialize on the Monocacy.


June 2 1898
The Club decided to go into camp on the Potomac River near Big Pool at same place, commencing Wednesday July 20th for 10 days everybody had a good time, fishing was good, the weather, all that could be expected. The boys vied with each other in making it pleasant for all and succeeded admirably. This year we were robbed of fish, rods, lines etc. In the month of October of this year all our lumber, the stove, cash and many other articles were destroyed by fire together with the barn of Jos. N. Williams at Fort Frederick. To replace the lumber etc. destroyed, the club was compelled to make an assessment and on May 24th 1879 an assessment of $3.00 beside the dues, was levied upon each member. June 22, 1899 the club voted to go into camp at the same place on the Potomac river near Point Bridge commencing July 19th for 10 days. Three new members were elected, the lumber, stove, etc. purchased and we went into camp, quite a number of visitors attended the camp and I believe all enjoyed themselves.


June 20th 1900
At this meeting the club voted to go into camp Wednesday July 18th at the same place on the Potomac River near Big Pool Station W. Md. R.R. The river was very clear and very low and few fish were caught except a few Salmon and Bass in Big Pool. Had quite a number of visitors who enjoyed themselves very much, a party of ladies encamped along the banks of Big Pool and quite a number of our members visited them, they too paid us the compliment of a visit and some of them took dinner with us. A number of photographs were taken of the camp and its surroundings, which are kept by the members and very highly prized.

July 2nd 1901 the club met at the Store of Messrs. Sharrer & Gorsuch and elected the following officers, Scott Miller, President; John J. Reese, Secretary & Treasurer; S. Carr. Wickert, Commissary and Geo. E. Baughman, Quartermaster; Jabez D. Powell, Cook and Singleton Dorsey, Assistant.

A change of location being discussed by some of the members, it was decided to appoint a committee to confer with Mr. Jno. H. Hoffman in reference to the rental of Hagerstown Bicycle Club House at Pinesburg. The committee Messrs. Roberts & Miller responded having already arranged with Mr. Hoffman for the occupancy of Club House from July 15th to 27th inclusive.

On motion decided to go into camp Wednesday July 17th and Hill Ardinger was elected Boatman.

All camp goods except tents were ordered shipped from Fort Frederick and after the meeting was stored in Club House. The meeting was not a success as few members attended it, and to those who did attend the expenses were quite heavy. This was very discouraging but those members who remained in the club decided to meet at the same place next year.


July 3rd 1902
Club met and elected the following officers, Geo. A. Miller, President; J. C. Sharrer, Secretary and Treasurer; Jabez D. Powell, Cook and Hill Ardinger, Boatman.

On motion decided to go into camp or occupy the Club House Wednesday July 16th 1902.

About six members went to the place of meeting to find everything belonging to the Club stolen, except the refrigerator and water cooler, even the stove and tables had been purloined. The Cook had to borrow cooking utensils, dishes, knives & forks from the neighbors to prepare the meals, and thus ended one of the most famous clubs, Carroll County has ever had.

The end of the Club was only temporary and the organization continues to this day. The group has a permanent site on the Monocacy River near Detour.
Photo Caption: Members of the Forest and stream Club of Westminster posed by their cabin on the Monocacy River near Detour in c. 1925. The men display a variety of fishing gear and several weapons including a rifle, shotgun and several Colt .45 automatic pistols. Two men in the front row also appear to be holding a turtle. Historical Society of Carroll County Collection.