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318 Elmer L. Andersen Library, University of Minnesota, 222 21st Avenue South, Minneapolis, MN 55455

An Inventory of its Records

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Creator: Young Men's Christian Association of Metropolitan Minneapolis
Title: Camping services records
Date: 1914-2008 (bulk 1955-1975)
Collection Number: Y.MPL.005
Abstract: Records documenting the administration of the camping programs of the YMCA Minneapolis are contained, including Camps Icaghowan, Ihduhapi, Menogyn, Warren, and various day camps. Available records include committee minutes, finances, evaluations, annual reports, and marketing materials.
Quantity: 16 cubic feet (16 boxes)
Location: See Detailed Description section for box listing.


1885 In 1885, Sumner F. Dudley, a YMCA secretary from Newburgh, New York, takes seven boys to nearby Camp Baldhead on Orange Lake for eight days. Within a few years, the camp becomes known as Camp Dudley, and is the oldest organized camp with a continuous history in the United States. From this modest beginning, the YMCA camp movement grows and expands all across the United States.
1899 The first attempt of a Minneapolis YMCA boys camp is held on the Baptist Assembly grounds in Mound, Minnesota. In the following years, it is held at the Muskey Farm, a part of the Longyear estate 1930-1939.
1900 The first Minneapolis YMCA Boys Camp is held on the shores of Lake Minnetonka, with 47 boys attending. The following year, 1901, the number increases to 85 campers.
1902 The Minneapolis YMCA Boys Camp moves to Lake Francis, Elysian, Minnesota, but the distance discourages campers.
1903-1905 The venue changes once again, this time to Clear Lake, Minnesota. It is becoming very clear to the organization at this time that without a permanent camp site and proper equipment, it will be impossible to develop a camping program in any substantial way.
1906-1907 The YMCA leases a summer club house along the southern shore of Lake Calhoun in order to establish a young men's residential camp; but has to be abandoned after the first year due to the encroaching urban sprawl.
1907 The first Minneapolis YMCA-owned resident camp, Icaghowan, opens with five acres on Green Lake near Chisago City, Minnesota.
1915-1916 In the summer seasons at Camp Icaghowan, four camps of two weeks each are conducted with a total attendance of 103 boys.
1919 In the summer season, a group of 380 working boys camp in a rented shack on Cedar Lake.
1919-1923 A group of young men camp at Bush Lake in 1919 and 1920, but by 1921 the rented site is taken over by the General Offices from the Young Men's Division, and run on a city-wide basis serving 311 boys from various groups, including the Americanization group, dormitory boys, church groups, and working boys.
1922 Camp Menogyn, Chippewa for "to grow everywhere", is added to the YMCA Minneapolis camping program. Wilder than Camp Icaghowan, this camp is located 35 miles north of Grand Marais, Minnesota. It is designed for use in August only as a long-term camp with a city-wide enrollment.
1924 An attempt to purchase 10 acres of the E.J. Fairfield property on Lake Minnetonka is made, but the plan is quickly abandoned when adjoining property owners (several of whom are supporters and contributors to the Minneapolis YMCA) object to having a camp on that site. For the summer, an alternative site on Lake Minnetonka is lent to the Young Men's Division by former Minneapolis Mayor J. E. Meyers – Enchanted Island.
1925-1926 Camp Menogyn is closed for summer seasons in 1925 and 1926 due to lack of enrollment.
1927 Camp Warren is purchased through the generous Dayton Endowment, two hundred acres of virgin timberland near Evelyth, Minnesota, near Half Moon and Pleasant Lakes. The property is purchased from a Mrs. O.B. Warren and the camp is named on behalf of her husband. Six cabins are initially built on the property to provide overflow from Camp Icaghowan. Camp Warren fills to capacity from the very first year.
1929 Camp Warren is officially dedicated on July 8, 1929.
1929 Camp Ihduhapi, (EE-doo-hop-ee), of Lakota origin for "Independence," is established on land purchased from Mrs. Annie Forbes. Totally 31.18 acres, the heavily wooded site located on Lake Independence has a 600-foot bathing beach.
1929 Camp Menogyn is open for the entire summer. Due to the high enrollment organized by districts, the time-allotment each group spends here has to be shortened. By 1934, Camp Menogyn is a "post graduate camp," the only camp in the state of Minnesota to offer a wilderness experience to challenge older boys and young men.
1930 Camp Ihduhapi opens on July 31, 1930, and becomes the first fully winterized YMCA Minneapolis camp, hosting a main lodge, 14 sleeping cabins, dining hall, handicraft cabin, in addition to other buildings. Located 25 miles west of Minneapolis, the camp eventually expands to over 172 acres by 1961.
1934 Camp Menogyn moves to a new site in Cook County on the north shore of West Bearskin Lake on 35 acres. Containing a bluff overlooking three pine-covered islands, the site is more level and includes two calm bays. The site is thought to have the necessary facilities for training campers before taking them out on wilderness canoe trips. This new site is purchased through a 1933 camping operations budget surplus and a generous donation from Russell H. Bennett.
1936 Due to the interest of boys younger than 10 (the age limit set at Camp Warren upon opening), in the summer of 1936 a Cub Camp opens, and eight log cabins are built to scale for the purpose.
1948 Camp Menogyn is enlarged and made more complete during the 1948 camping season.
1949 After serving youth on Green Lake for 42 years, in 1949 Camp Icaghowan moves to a new site on Lake Wappogassett near Amery, Wisconsin.
1950 The first day camp property – Green Triangle – is established on a few acres of Camp Committee member Don Willis' farm, near Orono, Minnesota. It becomes the first day camp recognized by the American Camping Association.
1954 Camp Manitou, another day camp, is established, operating out of the North Side branch.
1955 Camp Kici Yapi, day camp, is established, operating out of the Northeast Y branch, and by 1969 serves four branches, including Hiawatha, Minnesota Valley, West Central, and Southdale.
1956 A day camp program is formed at the Kelley Farm by Roosevelt branch.
1958 Camp Christmas Tree on Dutch Lake is donated by an anonymous donor, and dedicated in the summer of 1958.
1958 The day camp program composed of 1, 727 campers through the Minneapolis YMCA in the 958 season, demonstrating phenomenal growth.
1959 The 1959 resident camp breakdown of 237,000 total participants included 65% boys, 17% girls, 11% adult men and women, and 5% YMCA leaders and staff.
1963 Camp Monticello, with 1,000 acres on Mud, Long, First, and Bertram Lakes is sold to the Minneapolis YMCA by the Lehigh-Portland Cement Company. This camp is used as the location for the Summer Work Training program from 1964-1967.
1963 Camp Kabetogama is formed, with 90 acres of wilderness land 25 miles southeast of International Falls, Minnesota, donated by Mr. and Mrs. Enoch Sward.
1968 The first co-oed camping group is taken to Camp Menogyn by Gary Lewis, executive of several branches during 1960-1979.
1970-1979 Girls are integrated into the Minneapolis YMCA Camp programs, "in order to meet the growing need for service to the total family". All camps except Kici Yapi, Ihduhapi, and Warren are now open to girls. Over the decade, the last remaining camps are also integrated.
1984 A single parent family camp is established at YMCA Camp Ihduhapi.
1985 The YMCA World Camp program celebrates 100 years, with 50 US campers and 50 others from around the world. Before departing to Camp Northland near Ely, Minnesota, the campers spend the day at Camp Warren.
2002 The Camp Streefland horse program, the Streefland Colts, is transitioned to Camp Kici Yapi.
2003 On December 22, 2003, a major fire at Camp Streefland destroys the barn, which serves as the central gathering place and program center. Between 2004-2007, renovations are completed at Camp Streefland, including a new program center with infirmary and office, sewer and water updates, and general camp ground upkeep.
2010 As of summer 2010, in addition to the long-standing residential camps, the Minneapolis YMCA also operates six regional day camps, including: Camp Kici Yapi, Camp Christmas Tree, Camp Streefland, Camp Guy Robinson, Camp Manitou, and Camp Ihduhapi.

(Information taken from Breaking New Ground, Building Strong Lives: 140 Years of Youth Work with the Minneapolis YMCA by Paul Hillmer, 2006; from Builders of Men: A History of the Minneapolis Young Men's Christian Association: 1866-1936 by S. Wirt Wiley and Florence Lehmann; and from the collection).


Program administration, correspondence, reports, memoranda, articles, newspapers, pamphlets, photographs, scrapbooks, and other records documenting the programs devoted to the development of Camping Services in the Minneapolis YMCA, covering the years of 1914 to 2007.


These documents are organized into the following sections:
Camping Administration Records
Camp Christmas Tree Records
Camp Guy Robinson Records
Camp Icaghowan Records
Camp Ihduhapi Records
Camp Kici Yapi Records
Camp Menogyn Records
Camp Tamarac Records
Camp Warren Records


Use of Materials:
This collection is protected by the Copyright Law of the United States (Title 17, U.S. Code). It is the user's responsibility to verify copyright, ownership, and to obtain all the necessary permissions prior to the reproduction, publication, or other use of any portion of these materials.
Preferred Citation:
[Indicate the cited item and/or series here]Camping Services Records. Young Men's Christian Association of Metropolitan Minneapolis. Kautz Family YMCA Archives. University of Minnesota.
See the Chicago Manual of Style for additional examples.
Processing Information:
Processed by: Jesse Harpestad and Kathryn Oosterhuis, May 2012.
Catalog Record ID number: 6448596


Note to Researchers: Please see the separate inventories for the individual series listed below for more detailed information on the contents of each box.

Camping Administration

Box 67 Accident and health insurance, 1972.
Annual Camping Reports:
Box 67 Annual camping report, 1965-1966. 2 volumes.
Annual camping report, 1966-1971. 7 folders.
Annual camping report, 1972-1975. 3 volumes.
Annual camp reports, National Council reports, 1965. 3 volumes.
Annual report, ads, 1965-1970.
Board of Management:
Box 67 Board of management, 2002. 4 folders.
Board minutes, 2002-2003. 3 folders.
Miscellaneous, 1999-2001. 3 folders.
Camper insurance brochures, 1972.
Camper insurance policy forms, 1972.
Campership campaign, 1991.
Camping committee, 1970-1971.
Camping services, 2004-2005. 4 folders.
Capital campaign, 1993-1994. 4 folders.
Capital campaign, 1993-1994. 4 folders.
Clippings, undated. 3 folders.
Day Camp:
Box 67 Board of management, 2002. 4 folders.
Brochures, 2000-2009.
Grandma Jean endowment fund, 2007.
Content Note: Includes materials on the endowment fund created in memory by family of "Grandma Jean Goss."
Insurance, 1967-1970. 1 volume.
Insurance, 1967-1971. 2 folders.
Insurance, 1971.
Box 68 Development plans, 1960-1979.
Endowments, 1972. 2 folders.
Family camp, 2000.
Final report, customer survey, 1997.
Green Triangle day camp, 1950.
Last day song, 1980-1989.
Letters, brochures, articles, 1958, undated.
Long range camp study, 1970-1980. 1 volume.
Long-range study for camping services, final reports, 1970. 1 volume.
Camp Manitou, 2003-2007.
Marketing and Public Relations:
Box 68 Articles, 1914.
Brochures, 1930-1939.
General brochures, 1990-2009.
Miscellaneous marketing, 2001.
Newsletters, 1976-1985. 3 folders.
Box 69 Press releases, 1988.
Promotional material, 2000-2009. 2 folders.
Stories and quotes, 1999-2001.
YMCA camping, 1990-1999.
"Measuring character development in camping" research project, 1962.
Metro program camp report, 1977. 1 volume.
Miscellaneous, 1970-1979. 3 folders.
Camp Naivasha, miscellaneous, 1997. 2 folders.
National camping standards, 1970. 1 volume.
Osaka Japan exchange program, 1996.
Pecos River contracts, 1991.
Programs, smores, 2000-2009.
Prospects, capital campaign, undated.
Research project, "Can Camping Make a Difference?", 1963.
Camp Streefland, 2004-2007.
Secretary manual, undated.
"Self Concept Changes in Adolescents Participating in Summer Adventure Camping Experience", 1978.
Staff applications, 1953.
Statistical reports, 1955-1966. 4 folders.
State of summer programs report, 2006-2007.
Summer camp rosters, 1980-1996. 2 folders.
Summer camp reports, 1976.
Summer programs, 2000-2007. 6 folders.
Various camp documents, rosters, mission statements, essays, work forms, 1960-2004.
Voyageur program, manual, 1980-1989. 3 folders.

Camp Christmas Tree

Background Note: Camp Christmas Tree on Dutch Lake was donated by an anonymous donor, and dedicated in the summer of 1958. It has served as a day camp for over 50 years, and continues to serve the community. As of 2010, the 45 acre-camp serves children 4-14 of the western suburbs of Minneapolis and offers speciality programs in horses, archery, fishing, water sports camp, and the Leaders in Training program.
Box 70 Camp Christmas Tree, 2003-2004.
Minutes, 1964-1969.
Miscellaneous historical information, 1964-1971. 2 folders.
Rosters, 1970-1971.

Camp Guy Robinson

Background Note: Camp Guy Robinson was founded through a property donation to the YMCA by Mrs. Guy Robinson in memory of her late husband, a founder of the city of Coon Rapids, Minnesota. The property was later sold to establish an endowment in his name to provide a Y-camp for youth in the Coon Rapids area. After the sale of the property, the camp moved to the Boy Scout Camp located on the Rum River in Ramsey County. In 2000, the YMCA signed an agreement with Anoka County to lease property at Lake George Regional park, the current camp site.
Box 70 Camp Guy Robinson, 2000-2007.
Camp Guy Robinson, Nate Monahan scrapbook, 2007.

[Y.MPL.005-1] Camp Icaghowan, 1910-2007.

Content Note: Available records include committee minutes, finances, evaluations, annual reports, marketing materials, history of the camp, and facilities development information from 1910 to the 2007, with the bulk of the material covering 1940-1980. Includes alphabetical camp attendee rosters from the early 1910 to 1959. Go to the complete inventory

[Y.MPL.005-2] Camp Ihduhapi, 1953-2008.

Content Note: Records documenting the administration of Camp Ihduhapi. Available records include committee minutes, finances, evaluations, annual reports, and marketing materials from 1953 to 2008. Go to the complete inventory

Camp Kici Yapi

Background Note: At its inception, Camp Kici Yapi operates out of the Northeast Y branch.
Content Note: Records documenting the administration of Camp Kici Yapi, a day camp.
Box 74 Amphitheater, 2004-2007.
Committee rosters, 1966.
Director, 1972.
Minutes, 1964-1973. 2 folders.
Miscellaneous historical information, 1962-1970.
Physical property, 1964-1970.

[Y.MPL.005-3] Camp Menogyn, 1949-2008.

Content Note: Available records include committee minutes, finances, evaluations, annual reports, staff development and marketing materials from 1949 to the 2008. Also includes both the 40th and 70th anniversary materials, facility development records, and Camp Menogyn's extended wilderness camping program. The bulk of the material covers 1980-1999. Go to the complete inventory

Camp Tamarac

Box 79 A Tamarac Smile; The Tamarac Spirit; The Tamarac Story, 1974. 1 volume.
Resident camper insurance claims, 1972.
Sickness and accident reports, 1973-1974.

[Y.MPL.005-4] Camp Warren, 1917-2010.

Content Note: Available records include committee minutes, finances, evaluations, annual reports, and marketing materials from the 1917 to 2010. Includes material on staff development, and the evolution of the camp from a facility perspective. The bulk of the materials are from 1960 to 1980. Go to the complete inventory


See also the Publications and ephemera records of Metropolitan Minneapolis, separately catalogued in the Kautz Family YMCA Archives.


This inventory contains only summary descriptions of some of the series comprising the collection. Detailed narrative descriptions and box contents lists for each of those sections are available as separate documents.


This collection is indexed under the following headings in the catalog of the University of Minnesota Libraries. Researchers desiring materials about related topics, persons or places should search the catalog using these headings.
Camping -- History -- Minnesota.
Camps -- Management.
Day camps.
Young Men's Christian associations -- Minnesota -- Minneapolis.
Minneapolis (Minn.).
Young Men's Christian Association of Metropolitan Minneapolis.
Young Men's Christian Association of the City of Minneapolis.
Camp counselors.


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