Camp History - First Madison Bible Camp

That very first Madison Bible Camp was not held at Valley View because there was no Valley View at that time – and it could not be during June and July because time was needed to get the facilities at Short Mountain ready for the Madison boys and girls.   Short Mountain was located on 800 beautiful acres on the highest mountain in Middle Tennessee, between McMinnville and Woodbury, and about 60 miles from Madison.  It had been given several years earlier to members of the church of Christ by Woodbury physician Dr. Richard Adams.  Madison was allowed to use the camp rent-free, and the dates announced for the four three-day sessions were:

  • Sunday afternoon- Wednesday afternoon Aug. 5-8, girls, grades 4-6.
  • Wednesday afternoon-Saturday afternoon Aug. 8-11, boys grades 4-6.
  • Sunday afternoon-Wednesday Afternoon Aug. 26-29, girls, grades 7-12.
  • Wed. afternoon-Sat. afternoon Aug. 29-Sept. 1, boys, grades 7-12

Plans called for one adult counselor for every eight campers, and there would be no charge for the campers.  However, each camper would be asked to bring two quilts, six eggs, a sack of potatoes, etc.

There was much work to be done in a short amount of time, but the now familiar “Madison Spirit” was already at work as Madison members grabbed hold of Dr. North’s challenge to, “Do your part.”

In less than three months, they built a brand new section (Pow-Wow Village) in a small wooded area near the main village.  Pow-Wow Village boasted five new tents that were purchased by Madison members and named for famous Indian chiefs Dragon Canoe, Bald Eagle, Tecumseh, Black Hawk and Sitting Bull.

Dr. Robert Pettus volunteered to give each camper the state-required physical examination at no cost to the campers.   Jimmy Miller’s Sunday School Class gave a  “Plate and Bowl Shower” for the camp, and Carl Ross’ class cleared a five-mile hiking trail.  A host of volunteers turned out for several days of hard work to build platforms for the tents, set up the tents, and get the camp in shape.  The workers included skilled carpenters, electricians, common laborers and, as Dr. North put it, almost anything you could ask for.  The preacher was classified as a common laborer by the men and was permitted to “tote” the lumber and dig holes for the tent platforms.

Workers whose names were mentioned in theCaller were W.R. Dunn, W. S. Burns, Edgar Soapes, J. L. and Ruby Hunter, B. L. Hunter, Mike Goins, Charles Goins, H. H. Castleman, Perry Underwood, S. M. Gentry, S. S. Lowe Jr., Paul and Mildred Adcock, Tony Adcock and guest, Paul Nicks, Bernice Huffine, Charles Haile, Paul Holley, Alvin C. Ryan, Carl Ross, Jack Scott, Mr. and Mrs. Larry Widick, Geneva Hilliard, Doris Snow, Robert Bryan, Mr. and Mrs. Claude Coleman, Elita Faye Coleman, Claudette Coleman, Ralph Bradley, Janet Chilton, and Charles Goins Sr.

Members who volunteered to drive the kids to Short Mountain were Paul Adcock, Fred Boyce, C. H. Coleman, Mrs. Edna Head, Raymond Spear, Chester Sadler, W. H. Allen, Otho Higley, Harold Cox, Thomas C.  Brown, Glenn Burton, Albert  Goins Jr., C. H. Cron, S. R. Holt, Mrs. Cooper Qualls, C. E. Jones, B. L. Hunter, H. W. Cartwright, Charles T. Wakefield, and Hugh Lillie.