Sanhican Lodge of the Order of the Arrow was first created in February 1919 as the 'Trenton Lodge'. William Durling, with Harry Biles, Edwin Fisher, Frank Groom and J. Oliver Smith went to Treasure Island Scout Reservation, a camp owned by the Philadelphia Council in the Delaware River near Frenchtown, NJ, for induction into the Order of the Arrow by Unami Lodge #1.
On August 6, 1920 a business meeting was held on Park Island in the Delaware River, across from Sanhican Drive in Trenton, NJ. Lodge officers were elected and the lodge was officially named the 'Trenton Lodge'. It was decided that a candidate must spend fourteen nights at camp with at least eight boys from his troop.
In 1922 a constitution and by-laws were adopted and a totem was selected (the coiled rattlesnake). In accordance with a directive from OA Founder, Dr. E. Urner Goodman, the name of the lodge was changed at this time from 'Trenton Lodge' (the name of the city) to 'Sanhican Lodge' (which means "along the water" in the Lenni Lenape Indian Language). This series of dates: 1919, 1920 and 1922 has created confusion as to just when Sanhican Lodge was established. Within the Lodge, the year 1919 is commonly accepted. Patches and flaps proudly display the year 1919; the 50th anniversary was celebrated in 1969, the 75th anniversary in 1994 and 1999 was designated as the 80th anniversary. The only exception to using 1919 as the 'creation year' is a patch produced in 1965 which celebrates the 45th anniversary. This patch has long been considered an error.
On October 16, 1922, William Durling was the first member of the lodge elected to the Vigil Honor. By 1926, the total membership of Sanhican Lodge was 105.
1930s reference to Sanhican Lodge
An early reference to Sanchican Lodge in the Camp Deeerbone Camp Manual. Worth the visit. This information was provided by David Patterson.