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Camp Emerald Bay - Felt Patches 1925-1946  
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           Insignia for Camp Emerald Bay goes all the way back to the first year of the Camp in 1925. The first "badges" were actually what are known today as pins, issued as awards of merit to outstanding scouts. The award, known as "Camp Veteran", was symbolized by a three-part logo that consisted of a tent atop the letter "V"; surrounded by a crescent that symbolized Crescent Bay District Council. The Camp Veteran program started at the Council's first summer camp at Temescal Canyon in 1922 and continued at the 1923 summer camp at Russell Ranch and 1924 at Kee-Koo-Too-Yeh. Veteran was also used briefly at Camp Josepho in the mid 1940's and at Camp Slauson through the 1950's.

Camp Manual
Crescent Bay - Centinela District Councils
Pages 4 & 5



           It is a little known fact that Scout Camp at Johnson's Landing on Catalina Island was not originally called "Camp Emerald Bay". Between 1925-1928, the camp was simply known as Catalina Camp or Crescent Bay Camp. Equally obscured from common knowledge is that at least in 1926, Crescent Bay Camp was the camp for two Councils: Crescent Bay and Centinela. Centinela District Council, headquartered in Inglewood, California, and lead by Scout Executive, D. Scott Field, had formerly been the southern portion of the original Crescent Bay Council until it split off to form it's own Council in 1925. Centinela District was short lived, merging into Los Angeles Metropolitan Council in 1927.
          Also of note on the 1926 Crescent Bay Camp staff was new Scout Executive F. R. Hill (before he became known as "Uncle Bob"), W. Bernarr Bates (Crescent Bay Council's first "Super Scout") and Mart Bushnell who started leading pack trips in Sequoia National Park for Crescent Bay scouts in the late 1920's. Those summer trips to Sequoia led to the establishment of the Crescent Bay High Sierra Camp in 1939, also known as Camp Wolverton.
          Bushnell would go on to serve as the National Director of Health & Safety for the B.S.A. and the Eagle Scout Bicentennial Celebration during in 1976. Walter Wescott, the only Crescent Bay Scout to have attended the 1920 World Jamboree in England, served as Camp Emerald Bay's first waterfront director.
Late 1920's- Early 1930's
Camp Veteran "Badges" (Pins)

           Awarded to Scouts who showed the proper spirit in cooperation, advancement, entertainment, and camp improvement. Points won at previous camps (prior to the Crescent Bay Camp at Emerald Bay) counted towards the more advanced "badges". There were five different pins in all, each color signifying a different level of achievement. No record is known that defines how points towards Camp Veteran badges were earned but it appears the final determinations were made by the Camp staff.
          The five levels of Camp Veteran changed in 1929 when the Good Camper designation was created. From that point forward, Camp Veterans were selected by the staff (with a maximum of three recipients per camping session) instead of by earning points; suggesting that five different pin colors were no longer necessary. It remains unclear which color or colors of Camp Veteran pins were awarded to the small number of Scouts who were selected from 1929 onward.

100 Points
200 Points
300 Points
500 Points
1,000 Points

      camp emerald bay patch badge         
  White cloisonne on metal. Hallmarked on reverse.
Shown on original manufacturers card.
  Red cloisonne on metal. Hallmarked on reverse.

  Copper or Bronze. Hallmarked on reverse
(image courtesy of Bill Topkis)
  Silver. Hallmarked 'Sterling' on reverse.

  Gold. Hallmarked
on reverse.


During the 1920's and 1930's, Scouts that did not meet the Camp Veteran or Good Camper requirements during the camping
session,did not get a patch for attending camp. This tradition continued at Emerald Bay through the 1946 summer camping season.
Camp Veteran and Good Camper badges were akin to a high school letter. Only those that qualified received the insignia.

Camp Veteran
Camp Veteran

Felt. Monogram style patch.
This patch has historically been labeled as the first patch from Crescent Bay Camp at Emerald Bay. The badge is the shape of the Camp Veteran logo and is presumed to
camp emerald bay patch badge

Silk screened on felt.
Like the 1925-26 patch, the design
shows the Camp Veteran logo and
have been awarded to Scouts and Scouters that met the requirements for a Camp Veteran pin. It is thought this patch was used in 1925, again in 1926 and possibly
into the early 1930's, suggesting that it
was issued concurrently with the Camp
pins. Example shown above
was a copy made in 1971 for the
Emerald Bay Patch Board.
   was likely awarded for meeting
Camp Veteran
requirements. This patch was used concurrently with Camp Veteran pins which are known to have been pinned directly to the front of the badge over the Camp Veteran logo..

  Silk screened on felt.
The only Emerald Bay patch to use the original name of "Crescent Bay Camp".
The design of the patch is unclear,
possibly a Ram's head. The actual
 totem or logo used remains a mystery.


circa 1929
Camp Emerald Bay Manual

  Page 13
  Page 14

Staff man John Prentiss' personal copy.
Late 1920's-Early 1930's

Requirements for Good Camper Badge
are very similar to the requirements for
the Camp Veteran "Badge" from the mid 1920's suggesting the name of the
 Camp Veteran award was changed
to Good Camper in 1929.

Honor Veteran
requirements suggest
 that a new award was created to
establish an honor above Good Camper.
Of note: a maximum of three Honor Veterans would be awarded per session. The insignia for Honor Veteran could
have been the Camp Veteran pins above and medals indicating Honor or Best Camper.
see Honor Veteran medals

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Good Camper
Small Patch
Good Camper

camp emerald bay patch badge

Silk screened on felt.
Silk screened on felt.
Believed to be the first Good Camper badge. Also shows the Camp Veteran logo. The Camp Veteran program from
previous years was replaced by the
Good Camper and Honor Veteran programs in 1929. Because of its size, this patch was probably designed for wear on a neckerchief or scout sash and not the shirt pocket of the uniform.
Recent discoveries document the 1929 Crescent Bay Good Camper patch was also awarded to Good Campers at High Sierra Camp in Sequoia during 1929.
  A second patch was awarded
in 1929. This badge is the first 
to officially use Emerald Bay

as the name of the camp .
The patch is known to have
been worn on the right upper
arm of the scout shirt but the requirements for earning it
 remain unclear.

    Silk screened on felt; sewn on felt & troop numeral.
  A pirate logo is used for the very first time and the symbol of Camp Emerald Bay can be traced back
to this point.
Because of its size, this patch was
probably designed for wear on a neckerchief or
Scout sash and not the shirt pocket. It is thought
that troops attending camp as a unit put their own
troop number on the pirate’s hat, a practice seen
at other BSA camps during the 1930's.
Example shown is from the couts of Troop 51,
Beverly Hills, California. It is also possible that in
1930, troop contingents made their own troop
patches for camping at Emerald Bay.
see varieties of this patch in the

Excerpt from Crescent Bay Council Annual Report
Report of the Camping Commitee p.9

Camp staff awarded 148 Good Camper badges in 1931, approximately 25% of the total number of Campers that year.
Only seven campers earned the Camp Veteran pin, the same number of scouts that earned the Senior Red Cross Life Saver badge.
see  >  Life Saving patches

1931 & 1932
Good Camper

good camper

Silk screened on felt.
Evidence documents that Crescent Bay
Council was feeling the pinch of the great
depression. The Council's 1932 budget was cut by 15% over the previous year and saving money was the order of the day. It is believed that remaining Good Camper patches from 1931 were also used in 1932. Overall camp attendance dropped 35% from 599 campers in 1931 to 388 in 1932. The number of scouts earning Good Camper in 1932 likely dropped a corresponding amount
(see patches marked '32')
The design incorporates the Camp Veteran logo but replaces the "V" with a canoe.
see varieties of this patch in the

Good Camper

Pen & ink on leather.
In the decade of the Great Depression,
money spent on manufactured patches
and awards was a luxury. Hand drawn
badges on leather scraps could be made
in very small quantities for almost no cost.
Crescent Bay Council had already been
 using leather awards for Pow Wows &
Field Meets
and the staff decided to use leather Good Camper patches in 1933.
One story has it that the patches were
made by Emerald Bay Handicraft Director, Frank "Pop" Pudney although this has
never been confirmed. A treasure chest design continued the pirate/nautical theme started in 1930 and marks the first time a
skull and crossed-bones is used on an
Emerald Bay patch.
see varieties of this patch in the

Good Camper

Silk screened on felt.
Sail boat design may have been
inspired by the Endymion, a yacht
owned by aircraft  builder,
Don Douglas Sr.  Douglas and family
were frequent visitors to Emerald Bay
during the 1930's. Donald Douglas Jr.
went on to become Crescent Bay Area Council president during 1950's-60's.


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Good Camper
Good Camper
Good Camper
Silk screened on felt.
Emerald Bay Good Camper patches throughout the 1930's depict a variety of nautical themes but the  camp had not yet settled on a logo or mascot. The 1935
patch returned to a pirate design like the one used in 1930. Catalina Island, including Emerald Bay, had a rich tradition as a pirate base during the early 1800's.
  Silk screened on felt.
In 1936, Region 12 selected
Camp Emerald Bay as the location
for a year-round Regional Sea Scout
base. The Sea Scout influence was
evident in choosing a skipper's
wheel as the design for the
1936 Good Camper patch.

   Silk screened on felt.
For the second time since 1933,
a treasure chest was the symbol for
Emerald Bay in 1937. Stories of
buried pirate treasure in Smuggler's
Cove have abounded since the 1850's.
To date, no pirate treasure
has been found.

Crescent Bay Gazette
May 1937, pg. 3
Adventure Patrol
  Crescent Bay Gazette
May 1937, pg 4

good camper

        Felt on felt with crossed canoes.
       In 1936 a special camp program for select older Scouts called Adventure Patrol was developed at Camp Emerald Bay. Purchase of two war canoes were used to create a unique adventure experience in 1937. 16 top campers per period were invited to circumnavigate the entire island for 8 days, camping at empty island beaches along the way.
       After WWII, Adventure patrol morphed into a special session at the end of the regular camping season called the Senior Aquatic Camp. It lasted in that form through 1951 when Adventure Patrol was tried again in 1952 during each camp period.
Between 1957-63 the annual special session Explorer Camp was used again as a final week for the summer.
      In 1964, Emerald Bay returned to a program for older Scouts during each camp period, similar to Adventure Patrol. This time, it was called "Rugged E", the "E" referring to "Explorer". Rugged E proved so popular, it became the model for all Rugged Adventure programs used at Camp Emerald Bay today.

Two new war canoes inspired the design
of the original Adventure Patrol patch.

jump to  > 1950's Adventure Patrol patch

Good Camper
Good Camper


Silk screened on felt.
An anchor served as the nautical theme
for the 1938 Good Camper patch.

Silk screened on felt.
A sea horse was used as the 1939
Camp Emerald Bay totem. This year,
Crescent Bay Council opened High
Sierra Camp
(Camp Wolverton) in
Sequoia National Park and scouts had
two summer camps to choose from.
(Minor varieties exist in the shapes of the segments along the sea horse's back.

      1940 was a pivotal year in Crescent
Bay Council Summer Camping. The
lease for Camp Emerald Bay would not
be renewed. A week later, Anatol
Josepho offered to donate a tract of land
in Rustic Canyon along with $32,800 for improvements on a camp that could
open the following year.  Crescent Bay
used Camp Wolverton High Sierra exclusively for one summer in 1940 until
the opening of Camp Josepho in 1941.
      Stories persisting to this day
claiming that Camp Emerald Bay closed because it was taken over by the military
in 1940 as a demolition training base
are unfounded
      While it is true that the U.S. military
took over the camp and most of Catalina Island in 1942, Crescent Bay had already transitioned its summer camping
program to the new Camp Josepho
being built in Rustic Canyon. Sea Scouts and limited troop use of the the Emerald Bay location went on in 1941 but was
off limits from 1942-45.

  Camper & Sea Scout
War Years
Good Camper
camp emerald bay patch badge            The evidence does not support reports
that Camp Emerald Bay was taken over by the military in 1940 and 1941. If, in fact, they had taken over Catalina Island in the beginning of 1940, (almost two years prior to the bombing of Pearl Harbor), it raises some contradictions in American History. The commonly held belief that the Japanese perpetrated a surprise attack on the United States on December 7, 1941 could be suspect if it were known that the Military was actually preparing for war by taking over Catalina Island months, if not years, before the attack. This chapter of American history intertwines with the history of Emerald Bay.
Blue flocking on dark yellow felt.
A skull over crossed swords returned the 1941 patch to a pirate motif. While full summer camping programs had been discontinued at Emerald Bay in 1940, different troops and Sea Scouts used the Camp in 1941. That year, the camp did not have a resident staff, organized program
or structured sessions.

      However, it is documented that Catalina Island was closed to civilian personnel, tourists, movie studios and Scouts during most of World War II when it was used for demolition and OSS training. By the summer of 1942, both Camp Emerald Bay and High Sierra Camp Sequoia (Wolverton) were shut down. All Crescent Bay Council camping operations were transferred to Camp Josepho. Private troop camping and pack trips into the Sierra continued in Sequoia National Park utilizing the High Sierra Camp Wolverton as a base camp during those years.
  Silk screened on felt.
Shows an aerial view "pirate map' of
the camp structures at Emerald Bay.
The "A" dock, dinning hall, cabins and
 other structures are clearly seen. With
  World War II over, Camp Emerald Bay reopened in 1946 along with 
Camp Wolverton in Sequoia and
Camp Josepho in Rustic Canyon.
Crescent Bay Scouts had three summer camps to choose from. Emerald Bay was the least attended of the camps that year and did not get into full swing until 1949. 1946 would also be the last year without
 an official totem mascot for the camp.

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Norman Duff
December 7, 1934


Norman Duff, Troop 28 Venice,
on the night of his Eagle Scout Court of Honor.

  Close-up of merit badge sash showing 1932, 1933 (partially hidden) & 1934 Emerald Bay Good Camper badges. Shield shaped patch above 1934 EB patch was awarded to Scouts attending the 1934 Region Twelve Camporal at Griffith park.
see  >  trophy sash with same patches

Life Saving Patches  

During the 1920's and 30's, Camp Emerald Bay participated in the American Red Cross (A.R.C.) Life Saving program.
Junior and Senior Life Saving ranks were taught and awarded to scout campers along with the Scout life Guard designation, although these honors were not easy to earn. The staff proudly wore A.R.C. patches on their swimsuits.
These patches were National B.S.A. insignia and used by different Scout councils around the country.

Late 1929
Emerald Bay Waterfront & Junior Staff
    circa 1932    

Staff wearing Junior Life Saving Service patches in various locations on swim suits.
Future Council President in the 1960's, George Pardee, is 2nd from left. Mart Bushnell is standing, shirtless, in the back row center with Ercell Hart to his left.
The Junior staff men kneeling L-R: Roy AthertonPaul DeanJack Blanchard
Bob Ettes
Ed Butterworth and an unknown staff man. Dick Faucett is seated at left of front row. John Ingram, future Camp Slauson Ranger 1938-41, is standing
to far right with oar.
Mart Bushnell with a Yellow Fin,
wearing Life Saving patch on trunks.
  see >  Camp Emerald Bay Staff Trunks 


Late 1920's Early 1930's
                         Scout Life Guard

Embroidered on twill

      Life Saving Service
          Embroidered on twill

Late 1920's
Junior Life Saving Service

Late 1920's Early 1930's
Life Saving Service

Junior & Senior Life Saving


Embroidered on twill.
Embroidered on twill.
Embroidered on twill.

Year-Marked Patches   

Prior to the 1950's, scouts would occasionally write on patches to signify different things related to how they earned them.
Examples of older Camp Emerald Bay patches have been found with these types of markings on them.

    Marked "32" with pen on Tee-Pee.Presumably to differentiate from the same
patch earned in 1931.
 see varieties of the
1931-32 patch in the IDENTIFICATION GUIDE
  Marked "32" with pen on bottom of crescent and
right side of canoe.
Presumably to differentiate from the same patch earned
in 1931.
    Patch removed from sash or shirt.
"41" marked out with pen. One theory is
the 1941 patch might have also been used
 in 1942 or later but definitive evidence explaining why the date on this patch
was altered is lacking.


Many, if not most, of the Camp Emerald Bay patches of the 1920's and 30's were manufactured by Fisch & Co. of Los Angeles.
The labels shown have come from the backs of Emerald Bay patches.


Late 1920's

Label Remnant
Reverse of 1930 Emerald Bay Patch

Early 1930's

Mid-Late 1930's



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How the Silk Screening Process Creates Varieties
When silk screens are cut, the printer prepares two side-by-side images. This allows the patches to be screened two at a time instead
of individually.
The process is called TWO UP. Often times, this will create minor differences between the patches screened on the right versus the left.




TYPE A has a LOWER LIP that is mostly STRAIGHT ACROSS. There are very FEW LINES around the lower jaw below
the knife in the pirate's mouth. There is
NO LINE under the eye on the right.

has a LOWER LIP that is CURLED.
There are very HEAVY LINES around the
lower jaw below the knife in the pirate's mouth.
There is a LINE under outer corner of
the eye on the right.

TYPE A the front of the canoe TOUCHES the crescent.

  TYPE B the front of the canoe EXTENDS PAST the crescent.

    Because the 1933 patches
are hand made, each one is slightly different.
OF NAILS within the red straps.
  Two major types have been noted among the few 1933 patches known to exist.
OF NAILS within the red straps.

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