Woman Houses Pieces Of Camp Fire History

Friday, February 1st 2008, 7:48 pm
By: News On 6

Tulsan Phyllis Raines got involved with Camp Fire when her daughter was a Camp Fire girl, and her interest has never waned.  The News On 6's Rick Wells reports she has perhaps the most complete collection of Camp Fire memorabilia in the country.

A little bit of everything Camp Fire.  A couple of decades ago, Phyllis Raines' attic became the repository for boxes and boxes of Camp Fire memories people couldn't bear to throw away.

"They learned I'm a taker of everything, and a keeper of everything," said collector Phyllis Raines.

So, she took the boxes and stored them safely in the attic.  About five years ago, she decided to find out what she had so she inventoried everything.

"I have almost 10,000 items on my computer," said collector Phyllis Raines.

With that realization, she decided she needed a place to put all that stuff.

"I cleaned out this bedroom and made a museum.  And then, I had so much stuff I didn't have enough display cases for it," said collector Phyllis Raines.

So, she started displaying items on the walls.  She has uniforms and uniform pieces dating back to 1912.  She has scrapbooks and pictures, patches and pins. It's quite a collection.

"I have every first edition of every manual that they put out starting from 1913," said collector Phyllis Raines.

Raines also has a complete display of the candy they've sold over the years.  Some may not know, in the beginning, they sold doughnuts.

"Here in Tulsa we sold our first doughnuts in 1937," said collector Phyllis Raines.

She's become a resource for Camp Fire leaders all over the country.

Camp Fire offers programs for boys and girls from kindergarten through high school.