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Talidandaganu' #293 Lodge History

Talidandaganu' Lodge, as it is known today, was chartered in February 1957, but it was preceded by both another OA lodge and a local honor campers society. Five councils in Tennessee, including ours, formed the honor campers society known as "The Tribe of Chickamauga" around 1926. Then in 1939 the council, known as Chattanooga Area Council, began inquires about forming an Order of the Arrow lodge. The council's application for a charter, possibly delayed by World War II, was approved on May 1, 1945.
 
The first lodge was named Chickamauga, which means "river of death," and was taken from the band of renegade Cherokee Indians by that name, led by Chief Dragging Canoe. The totem for this lodge was a beaver. Chickamauga Lodge was basically inactive and disbanded in 1947.
 
In the fall of 1956, new interest in the Order of the Arrow caused local scouts to petition the National Council in New Jersey for another OA charter. The name "Tali-danda-ganu’" was proposed with an eagle in flight as the totem.  In Cherokee, Tali-danda-ganu’ means "two looking at each other," referring to Lookout Mountain and Signal Mountain, which face each other, This application was approved on February 4, 1957. Scout Ron Stulce then sent a letter on February 18, 1957, to all Scouts in the council who met the requirements for membership, asking them to contact the council office if they were interested. On June 28-29, 1957, twenty charter members of Talidandaganu' Lodge were inducted at Camp Cherokee in an ordeal ceremony performed by members of Pellissippi Lodge 230 from Knoxville.
 
The first Brotherhood ceremony was held in July of 1958, performed again by a team from Pellissippi Lodge of the Great Smoky Mountains Council. Eleven Talidandaganu' members were inducted into the brotherhood at that time. In 1963, the lodge's first Vigil Honor ceremony was held to present Tommy Chamberlain and Ron Stulce with the Vigil Honor. Later that same year, the Vigil was presented to James T. Pierce.
 
Our lodge members conducted the second Ordeal ceremony at Camp Cherokee on November 8-9, 1957 with nine new members being inducted. Then on July 18-19, 1958, another 25 new members were inducted during the lodge's third Ordeal ceremony. The second Brotherhood ceremony on October 11, 1958 saw eight members sealing their membership in the order. The fourth Ordeal ceremony inducted 35 new members and the fifth, held in September 1960 at Camp Tsatanugi, added another nineteen. At the Spring Ordeal in June of 1989, our lodge inducted its first female member, Jo Ann McKinney. At the Fall Ordeal in October 1995, she became the first female member of our lodge to be awarded the Vigil Honor.
 
Talidandaganu' Lodge has had active dance and ceremonial teams at various times throughout the years. At the Area V-D conclave in 1972 at Boxwell Scout Reservation, Middle Tennessee Council, a newly formed Talidandaganu' Lodge dance team performed the Hopi Snake Dance using live snakes. It was a very impressive presentation and created quite a stir. The judges were set to award our team first place when it was pointed out that the snake dance is a religious ceremony and therefore not allowed for competition.
 
In 1988 the lodge ceremonial team competed at the National Order of the Arrow Conference  in Colorado.  The team received the award for fourth place overall in the nation. The team consisted of Teddy Shelton as Allowat Sakima (2nd place individually), Brad Pope as Meteu (3rd place individually), Billy Durkin as Kichkinet (1st place individually) and Brian Glover as Nutiket.
 
In 2007 the Lodge celebrated its 50th Anniversary with a reunion held at Chester Frost Park.  Members from every decade, including three charter members, were in attendance.  The keynote address was given by the National Vice-Chief.
 
2010 welcomed the 100th Anniversary of Scouting in Chattanooga.
 

Charter Members

Tom Ainsworth

Bill Goins

John Jenkins

Paul Rouse

Byron Baker

Tommy Green

John Newell

Sid Shelton

Dean Biskey

Neal Grove

Jim Noel*

Tom Simmons

Cliff Bowers, Jr.

Jesse Gunn*

George Norris

Ron Stulce

Pierce Corden

Robert Hines

Butch Quarles

John Wilson

*These were members of the council professional staff.

Founder's Award

1997

Mike Payne

2003

Ron Stulce

2008 Doug Wrinn

1998

Tom Miller, Sr.

2004

Kevin Martin

2009 Howard Bartlett

1999

John R. Hawkins Sr.

2005 Mike Flores 2009 Ryan Faulkner

2000

Mike Reynolds

2005

Tyler Gray

2010 Warren Diegel
2001 Harvey Raper

2006

Mary Richardson

2011 Josh Williams

2001

John Thomas, Jr.

2007

Larry Richardson

2011 Dennis Williams

2002

Bob Crawford

2008

Nick Diegel    

 

Distinguished Service Award

Dave Worland 1979

Bill Ketron* 1981

Alan Cooper* 1983

Teddy Shelton 1992

* Relocated prior to recognition

Lodge Chiefs

57-58

Byron Baker

76-77

Craig Troxler

96-98

Brian Smith

58-59

Tommy Ainsworth

77-78

Stuart Goza

99-00

Matt Murphy

59-60

John Jenkins

78-79

Gene Reece

01

John Thomas

60-61

Craig Tennant

79-80

Everette Ingram

02

Tyler Gray

61-62

Bob Hines

80-81

Adam Quirk

03

Colin Rymer

62-63

Ron Stulce

81-82

Chris Alexander

04

Josh French

63-64

Stanley Workman

82-83

Greg Roberson

05

Trey Watkins

64-65

Stan Roberts

83-84

Kendall Kaylor

06-07

Nick Diegel

65-66

Fred Yattoni

85

Brad Pope

08

Ted Hope

66-67

Bill Workman

86

Teddy Shelton

09

 Sam Steadman

67-68

Eddie Pruett

87

Michael Harris

10- Josh Williams

68-69

Sandy Smith

88

Gregory Harris

   

69-70

Jim Holt

89

Brian Glover

   

70-71

Dave Leitner

90

Steve Barham

   

71

Phil Ledbetter*

91

Kevin Martin

   

71-73

Russell Hill

92

Ian Pearson

   

73-74

Mike Flynn

93

Ken Mahon

   

74-75

Rick Pierson

94

Bryan Martin

   

75-76

David Worland

95

Adam Russell

   

*Phil Ledbetter served as interim chief after Dave Leitner left for college. 

Lodge Advisors

1

1957-

Victor Harris

 

10

1984-1989

Frank Robinson

2

 

Frank Vensent

 

11

1989

Lowell Bennington

3

          - 1970

Mike Williams

 

12

1989-1993

Tom Miller

4

 1971 - 1973

Bill Godsey

 

13

1993-1995

Bob Crawford

5

 1973 - 1975

Paul Rouse

 

14

1995-1996

Les Hall

6

 1975

Griff Martin*

 

15

1997-2004

Ray LeCroix

7

 1975-

Bill Sisk*

 

16

2004-2007

Mary Richardson

8

         - 1980

Bill Sherman

 

17 2008-2010 Tim Steadman

9

1980-1983

Richard Holmes

  18 2011 Tommy Rogers

* Co-Advisors

Service Beyond the Lodge

Dave Worland

Section Chief SE-IIA 1976; Southeast Region Chief 1976-78

Bill Ketron*

Section Advisor; Southeast Region OA Chairman 1986-91

Alan Cooper*

Section Chief; Southeast Region Chief 1980-1982

Teddy Shelton

SE-6 Section Chief; Southeast Region Chief  1989-90

Kevin Martin

SR-6 Section Chief 1993

John (JT) Thomas

SR-6S Section Chief 2003-2004

*Term served while a member of another lodge

Conclaves Hosted

Year

Area/Section

Site

1965

V-D

Patton Hotel with events on Lookout Mountain

1973

SE-IIA

Camp Cherokee

1979

SE-IIA

Skymont

1985

SE-6

Skymont

1993

SR-6

Skymont

2002

SR-6S

Skymont

2012 SR-6 Skymont