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Boone in Watauga County, North Carolina — The American South (South Atlantic)
 

Stanley Harris

1882 - 1976

 
 
Stanley Harris Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Mike Stroud, 2011
1. Stanley Harris Marker
Inscription.  Boy Scouts of America leader. Founded Scouts' Interracial Service in 1926. Lived 100 yds. N.
 
Erected 2010 by North Carolina Office of Archives and History. (Marker Number N-48.)
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Fraternal or Sororal Organizations. In addition, it is included in the North Carolina Division of Archives and History series list. A significant historical year for this entry is 1926.
 
Location. 36° 13.251′ N, 81° 41.501′ W. Marker is in Boone, North Carolina, in Watauga County. Marker is on West King Street (U.S. 321/441) near Poplar Grove Connector Road, on the right when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Boone NC 28607, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Ginseng Trade (approx. 0.3 miles away); United States Post Office (approx. 0.4 miles away); 1940 Flood Ends Boone Train Service (approx. half a mile away); The Junaluska Community (approx. half a mile away); Jones House (approx. half a mile away); Councill's Store
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(approx. half a mile away); Stoneman's Raid (approx. 0.7 miles away); Historic Black Cemetery (approx. 0.9 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Boone.
 
Regarding Stanley Harris. Stanley Harris, founder and leader of the Interracial Service of the Boy Scouts of America, was born in Trade, Tennessee on October 31, 1882, the son of William and Rachel Netherly Harris. Shortly after his birth, the Harris family moved to Avery County, where Harris attended local schools. At age 18 he entered Tennessee Wesleyan College, in Athens, where he graduated in 1903. He taught school briefly at Cove Creek Academy, before taking a position with the YMCA.

While living in Frankfort, Kentucky, Harris, an avid outdoorsman, began leading hikes in the mountains for young boys. After reading of the Boy Scout movement then taking place in Great Britain, Harris applied for and received a charter from Robert Baden-Powell, founder of the Boy Scouts, in 1908 for one of the first Boy Scout troops formed in the United States. Two years later he served as one of the charter members in the official founding of the Boy Scouts of America. Seven years later he joined the Scouts national headquarters
Stanley A. Harris, in a 1975 photo, reads a telegram from President Ford image. Click for full size.
courtesy of Winston Salem Journal, 1975
2. Stanley A. Harris, in a 1975 photo, reads a telegram from President Ford
in New York City.

As a scout leader in Kentucky, Harris made significant gains in introducing African American boys to scouting. Partially as a response to this, he was made the head of the Interracial Services division of the Boy Scouts, and given the task of promoting interracial scouting across the nation. He supported the founding first all-black Boy Scout troop in 1916 and, during the 1920s, helped organize the first all-Native American troop. For his efforts, he became the first Caucasian given an honorary doctorate by Tuskegee Institute. In 1926 he organized the Scouts’s Interracial Service, an initiative to boost racial diversity.

Harris retired from the Scouts in 1947, and moved to Boone. He remained active in community events, serving as treasurer of the outdoor drama Horn in the West, and as secretary of the Boone Chamber of Commerce for fifteen years. Harris continued to work with local Scout efforts until 1975 when he moved to a nursing care facility in Greensboro. He died there on August 13, 1976, and subsequently was buried near his former home in Boone. (N.C. Dept. of Cultural Resources)
 
Stanley Harris Marker looking south, West King Street (US321/441)and Poplar Grove Connector Road image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Mike Stroud, June 11, 2011
3. Stanley Harris Marker looking south, West King Street (US321/441)and Poplar Grove Connector Road
Stanley Harris Marker, looking north along West King Street (US321/441) image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Mike Stroud, June 11, 2011
4. Stanley Harris Marker, looking north along West King Street (US321/441)
Stanley Harris Marker, showpiece at a small city park image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Mike Stroud, June 11, 2011
5. Stanley Harris Marker, showpiece at a small city park
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on April 26, 2021. It was originally submitted on June 12, 2011, by Mike Stroud of Bluffton, South Carolina. This page has been viewed 1,435 times since then and 37 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on June 13, 2011, by Mike Stroud of Bluffton, South Carolina.

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Apr. 13, 2024