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John Fazel

Photograph of John Fazel's camp

Topeka Boy Scout leader and organizer

In May 1911 Topeka Reverend John Fazel organized the first city wide Boy Scout Troop which met at his Oakland Presbyterian Church. Troop 3 as they were known, eventually moved their meetings to the Westminster Presbyterian Church a year later. During this time, Scout Troops were forming all over Topeka and its surrounding areas.

A leader was needed to take charge and Reverend Fazel volunteered. One of his first jobs was to help the old American Boy Scout Association merge with the Boy Scouts of America. In 1913, on the John Carter farm south of Topeka, at a location known as "Paw Paw Bend," the local council had its first summer camp. Forty-five boys attended this first session, at a cost of $2 each. The camp continued until 1922 when Camp Todd opened.

Reverend Fazel became the Council's first professional executive in 1916 and during his tenure the Council saw its first Eagle Scouts, one of which was William Menninger. Many other Topekans and Kansans have enjoyed the benefits of the hard work put in by the likes of Reverend Fazel in the early 20th century.

Entry: Fazel, John

Author: Kansas Historical Society

Author information: The Kansas Historical Society is a state agency charged with actively safeguarding and sharing the state's history.

Date Created: December 2004

Date Modified: March 2011

The author of this article is solely responsible for its content.