Welcome to the Firecrafter Historical Center

Okaw Valley Council in East St. Louis is known to have a Firecrafter "fire" that is still active. Here is what a brother had to say:

Here is some info about the Firecrafter organization in Southern Illinois. I have been talking to some other brothers and may have some more info for you in the future. I think that this is a good start. If you need any other info, let me know.

Yours in Scouting,
Derek Lake

Firecrafters moved into Southern Illinois from Central Illinois through the efforts of a group of men. George Dickinson, as a youth, was on staff at Camp Robert Farries in Decatur, Illinois. Firecrafters was an active part of camp as it had been brought to that area from its origins in Central Indiana. In the late 50's, George moved to Flora, IL, and became soutmaster there. He brought Firecrafters with him. At first George took Assistant scoutmasters with him to Decatur to be initiated into the organization. The first one to have this honor was assistant scoutmaster, Tom Barbre.

Others followed including scouts and scouters from the Flora area. In the 60's the organization was then large enough in Southern Illinois that rituals and projects were held in the area, thus the beginning of the Southern Illinois Firecrafters. Since then, the organization in Decatur has ceased to exist.

The group in Southern Illinois has grown to include more than 7 scout troops in the Okaw Valley Council. It is composed of two embers: Rock River Ember and Wacca Lake Ember. The group is not officially recognized by the Okaw Valley Council, but relations with it and the council's Order of the Arrow are good.

The Southern Illinois Firecrafters operate somewhat differently than our brothers in Central Indiana, but we are still dedicated to the same ideals: Friendship, Leadership, and Service. In the past few years our relationship with the crafters in the Crossroads council has strengthened. Each group has sent members to each others rituals. We have both offered assistance to one another and enjoyed the fellowship of the gatherings.

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