Visit New Mexico's Only Boy Scout Museum
Boy Scout flags hang from the ceiling in the Boy Scout Museum in Raton. Courtesy photo
The Los Alamos Boy Scout Museum Society has scheduled a trip Saturday, July 13 to Raton to visit New Mexico’s only Boy Scout Museum.
It is one of only 26 such museums in the United States and privately owned by Dennis and Susan Downing. The museum has been in existence for 20 some years, or about one half the scouting experience time of Dennis Downing─40 years in scouting.
Any person who desires to accompany Society members on this trip can meet at 7:30 a.m. at the parking area at the White Rock “Y” and from there, carpool and caravan. It is about a four-hour trek through Santa Fe and Las Vegas. This will give time for lunch before the museum opens at 1 p.m. Society membership is free and one need only sign up.
The museum has an extensive collection of memorabilia on display and exhibits are rotated and replaced regularly. Most of the materials are in cases, with others as wall-displays and on manikins.
Merit badge sashes hold badges across the years, uniforms (both youth and adult) are shown as well as flags, pennants and camping gear. Items represent adult Woodbadge, Silver Beaver awards and others.
The Order of the Arrow badges, Jamboree and Philmont patches from over the last more than 80 years may bring a bit of nostalgia to older scouts and scouters. Boy Scouting is worldwide and the Downings have a collection of foreign scout items.
Philmont Boy Scout Ranch is well known and Raton was a way station for Boy Scouts headed for Philmont’s high adventure camping. The museum is located near the train station on the corner of First Street and Apache.