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Captain Vincent Camalier
SCV Camp #1359
Camp History


The Captain Vincent Camalier, CSA Camp was chartered on January 8, 1979 in Leonardtown, Maryland. The following members were honored to sign the charter:

• Commander Robert Lee Haskins
• 1st Lt. Commander Thurston H. Baxter, Colonel USAF (Retired)
• Adjutant Alfred F. Gough Jr.
• Treasurer Wade Gilbert Dent, Jr.
• Historian Edwin W. Beitzell
• David Hammett, Sr.
• Wade Hampton Blackistone
• Bruce Edward Blackistone
• John Berkeley Lallande
• Frederick L. McCoy
• Gerald J. Sword
• James Ogden, III
• David Hammett, Jr.
• John H.B. Gough
• Alfred F. Gough, III
• Robert E.T. Pogue

POINT LOOKOUT CERMONIES:
The Camalier Camp’s main event is hosting the annual Point Lookout Confederate Memorial Service in Scotland, Maryland at the Monument/Cemetery near Point Lookout State Park. The first memorial service was held in 1979 with only a handful of people in attendance. Since then, it has grown to almost 300 people attending with about 60 wreaths being presented. James Bentley (J.B.) Couch was in charge of the service while camp commander from 1991-1994, and for the 2002 ceremony, Joseph Leonard (Lennie) Thompson, Jr. was in charge while camp commander from 1995-1998, and John Bernard Stober, Jr. was in charge while both commander and adjutant from 1999-2001 and 2003. Camp Treasurer Douglas F. Delozier, and his wife Denise funded the 2002 and 2003 ceremonies.

The memorial service was historically held in June because the camp had to work around the Point Lookout State Park schedule. However since 2003, the camp has ended its dealings with the park service and it was suggested by Compatriot Stober that the time of year for the event should be moved to the fall season. Rationale for this was numerous. The main reason was the summer heat. It typically has been over 100 degrees during our service and with people in suits, and participants such as the color guard and the musket and artillery salute re-enactors wearing wool uniforms, was just a heat stroke waiting to happen. The other problems were dealing with snakes, ticks, mosquitoes, etc. During the 2003 Point Lookout POW Descendants Organizations (PLPOW) living history, it was reported that the PLPOW re-enactors encountered at least two snakes. This area has its share of copperheads, which as you know are poisonous. Ticks are rampant. They can transmit both Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, and Lyme’s Disease, which Compatriot Stober contracted at Point Lookout in 1996. Now, we have the dreaded mosquitoes, which now can transmit West Nile Virus. All of these health concerns prompted Compatriot Stober to ask the Camalier Camp to move the event to the fall. Working with Patricia Buck, PLPOW the camp agreed on the second Saturday in November (closest to Veteran’s Day) except in the case when Veteran’s Day falls on that Saturday, then the ceremony will be held on the first Saturday in November. (Reason for this is because some of our camp members also participate in the Veteran’s Day Parade in Leonardtown every November 11).

In May 1998, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) ordered the removal of the Confederate Flag from the Point Lookout Confederate Cemetery after it had been flying, with no incidents or complaints, for 5 years. Past Commander-In-Chief Patrick J. “Rick” Griffin, III sued the VA and won, but the VA appealed and the decision was overturned, again, bringing the flag down in March 2001. Commander Griffin filed another lawsuit in January 2003. However, because the flag is “legally” unable to fly over the Confederate Cemetery, Compatriot Delozier sought and received permission from the property owner directly behind the cemetery, Mr. Charles Brown, Sr. for us to erect a flagpole and fly a Confederate Flag. The flag was installed on June 1, 2003. The following Camalier Camp members installed the pole: Commander Frank Willis, Tommy Newton, Jr., Doug Delozier, and Past Commander J.B. Couch, who also donated the materials, pole and flag. Denise Delozier took photos, which appeared in the Confederate Veteran Magazine. However, less then two weeks later before the June 14 ceremony, the flagpole was vandalized and the flag stolen. On June 5, 2004, the camp replaced it with a much sturdier 20’ steel flagpole, which was purchased solely by Doug Delozier. Frank Willis, J.B. Couch, Tommy Newton, Jr., and Doug Delozier installed it. Denise took photos, as she did the first time, for entry in the Confederate Veteran Magazine, again.

With Confederate Memorial Park on the left flank of the cemetery, complete with Confederate Flags and the Camalier Camp bringing up the rear with the flag on Mr. Brown’s land, the cemetery is quickly being surrounded by the beloved Confederate Flag, as it should be. Even the VA Director of Cemeteries, at the time, Ken Stoner stated, “That’s one way to get back at the VA.”

SPECIAL EVENTS & FUND-RAISERS:
• Members of the Camalier Camp also participates at other events such as: Lee-Jackson Day in Baltimore, Maryland Day, Memorial Day Parade, Flag Day Parade, Independence Day (July 4) Parade, Blessing of the Fleet, Veteran’s Day Parade, and other such events.

• On October 2, 1993, the Camalier Camp, along with the Private Wallace Bowling SCV Camp #1400 in La Plata, and the Colonel Richard Thomas “Zarvona”, United Daughters of the Confederacy Chapter in Charlotte Hall erected a plaque honoring Confederate Admiral Raphael Semmes at the Charlotte Hall Veterans Home, which used to be the Charlotte Hall Military Academy from where Admiral Semmes graduated. The Camalier Camp’s portion for the plaque was paid for from a fund-raiser single-handedly operated by Compatriot Stober. He personally sold almost 100 copies of “Religion in Lee’s Army” booklets and earned over $200.00 profit towards the purchase.

• On September 8, 2001, the Camalier Camp dedicated a headstone provided by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to Captain Camalier. This mainly came about through the efforts of Compatriot Couch. Even though the headstone took about a year to receive, the word “Signal” was misspelled as “Signol”. Compatriot Delozier has made an attempt to get a replacement headstone from the VA since October 2001, thus far, without success.

• In January 2003 when Compatriot Stober became treasurer, he single-handedly held the Camalier Camp’s second fund-raiser. He was able to acquire a replica Confederate Cavalry Officer’s Sword at a wholesale price and sold raffle tickets. He mailed out over 600 advertisements and sold enough tickets for the camp to receive over $1,000 profit. This literally doubled the camp treasury. The drawing was held during the May 15 camp meeting and the winner was Maryland Division Adjutant John P. Zebelean, III.

• During the July 2003 meeting, Compatriot Doug Delozier made a motion that the camp to create a “Friends of the Camp” within the Camalier Camp. It was voted and agreed that the “Friends” yearly dues would be $7.00 and they could vote on only camp matters (activities), and not on national issues such as amendments. Denise Delozier became the first “Friend” the next month. .

COMMANDERS:
The following is a list of camp commanders and the year(s) they serviced in that position:

• Robert Lee Haskins (1979 – 1980)
Also was the first Maryland Division Commander (1981 – 1982)

• David Hammett, Jr. (1981 – 1983)
Also was the third Maryland Division Commander (1986 – 1988)

• Christopher M. Wilson (1983 – 1985)

• Clinton B. Duke, Sr. (1985 – 1991)

• James Bentley (J.B.) Couch (January 1991 – January 1995)

• Joseph Leonard (Lennie) Thompson, Jr. (January 1995 – January 1999)

• John B. Stober, Jr. (January 1999 – January 2001)

• Robin East (January 2001 – May 2001)

• James Bentley (J.B.) Couch (May 2001 – January 2003)

• Frank A. Willis (January 2003 – May 2004)

• Robert (Rob) L. Long (May 2004 – Present)

ANNUAL STATUS REPORTS:
As per annual reports, the following is a count of members of the Camalier Camp since conception:

1979 – 20 members
1980 – 29
1981 – 28
1982 – 25
1983 – 25
1984 – 23
1985 – 24
1986 – 25
1987 – 26
1988 – 26
1989 – 22
1990 – 19
1991 – 23
1992 – 21
1993 – 20
1994 – 21
1995 – 22
1996 – 23

1997 – 32
1998 – No Report in File
1999 – 24
2000 – 24
2001 – 28
2002 – 26
2003 – 29
2004 - 28


STATE DIVISION CONVENTIONS:

• The Camalier Camp hosted its first Maryland Division Convention on April 14, 1984 at the St. Mary’s College Campus in St. Mary’s City. Not much information about this convention is in the camp files.

• The camp hosted its second Division Convention on April 28, 1990 at the Christ Church Fellowship Hall in Chaptico. This convention was dedicated to the late Past Division Commander and Commander of the General John Henry Winder Camp #1416 Martin “Mike” Morris and also to the following Camalier Camp members who had passed away:

o Robert Lee Haskins, Past Division & 1st Camp Cmdr, and charter member
o William Thomas Bailey who was a REAL SON
o Thurston H. Baxter, Colonel, USAF, (Retired) and charter member and Recipient of the UDC Cross of Military Service
o Edwin W. Beitzell, charter member & author, Point Lookout Prison Camp
o Blair Evans
o Frederick L. McCoy, charter member

After the 1990 convention, the members moved to Deep Falls, the home of Colonel Richard Thomas “Zarvona” for the dedication of a grave marker, which before Colonel Thomas was laid in an unmarked grave. The “Zarvona” MOSB Chapter sponsored this dedication.

• The Camp hosted its third Division Convention on April 13, 1996. It was held at the Olde Breton Inn in Leonardtown. It was dedicated to the memory of Compatriot James “Sam” Clark who was a member of both the Bowling SCV Camp and the “Zarvona” MOSB Chapter. Approximately 60 people were in attendance. The Convention Committee was made up of the following camp members: Commander Lennie Thompson, Jr., Adjutant David Braziel, and Chaplain John Stober, Jr.

CAMP NEWSLETTER:

The newsletter of the Camalier Camp is called “The Camalier Dispatch”. Its first issue was March 1991 and was created and edited by J.B. Couch. He performed the task of editor for almost 10 years. During this entire period, he copied and paid for postage out of his own pockets. The Camalier Camp owes a great debt of gratitude to Compatriot Couch for doing this.

CAMP INCORPORATION:
The Camalier Camp became incorporated on May 8, 1995 by the advisement of Compatriot Stober. It was incorporated with six “directors”:

• Commander Joseph (Lennie) Thompson, Jr.
• Lt Commander Robin East
• Adjutant David R. Braziel
• Treasurer and Past Commander Christopher Wilson
• Chaplain John B. Stober, Jr.
• Past Commander J.B. Couch

MEETINGS:
The Camalier Camp meets every third Thursday of each month, except for January and December. In January, the camp holds a luncheon to celebrate both General’s Lee and Jackson’s birthday and the anniversary month of our camp’s charter. The camp meets at 7:00pm at the Garvey Senior Center in Leonardtown, Maryland.

HASKINS/CLAGGETT AWARDS:
The Maryland Division created the Haskins/Claggett Award in 1988 for the most outstanding division member. It was named after Robert L. Haskins and Robert E. Claggett. Only one award is allowed to be given annually and is considered the highest honor that can be bestowed upon a Maryland SCV member by the Maryland Division. The following is a list of recipients of this most prestigious award:

• 1988 – Garth Bowling, Jr. (Charter member of the Bowling Camp)
• 1989 – Michael K. Williams (Colonel William Norris Camp #1398)
(Past Maryland MOSB Society Commander)
• 1990 – Martin “Mike” Morris (Winder Camp)
• 1991 – James “Sam” Clark (Bowling Camp)
• 1992 – David Hammett, Jr. (Charter member of the Camalier Camp)
• 1993 – Michael Rybikowsky (Bowling Camp)
• 1994 – Patrick J. “Rick” Griffin, III (Norris Camp & later became Cmdr-In-Chief of the SCV.
• 1995 – James Bentley (J.B.) Couch (Camalier Camp)
• 1996 – Harold Ford (Norris Camp)
• 1997 – Joe Wright (Bowling Camp)
• 1998 – Jim Kuropka (Colonel Harry W. Gilmor Camp #1388)
• 1999 – G. Elliott Cummings (Gilmor Camp, Past Div Cmdr & MD MOSB Cmdr)
• 2000 – John Sawyer (Maryland Line Camp #1741)
• 2001 – No Recipient
• 2002 – Charles Goolsby (Jeff Davis Camp #305) (Past Division Commander)
• 2003 – No Recipient
• 2004 – Donald E. Beck (Norris Camp)

Data for camp history was compiled by Past Commander
and Past Adjutant John B. Stober, Jr.

 

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Copyright © 1999 Sons of Confederate Veterans, Vincent Camalier Camp # 1359
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