Genealogy Society Meeting Focuses on Camp Solidarity - The Missourian: Local News

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Genealogy Society Meeting Focuses on Camp Solidarity

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Posted: Wednesday, July 9, 2014 6:32 pm

How well do we know our own community?

As part of its ongoing efforts to make local history come alive, the Meramec Valley Genealogical and Historical Society (MVGHS) will host a presentation on the history of Camp Solidarity, the lakefront community of homes tucked into the woods along the Meramec River off Highway O, south of Pacific.

The carry-in supper meeting at the Pacific Presbyterian Church, located at Fourth and St. Louis streets, will be held Wednesday, July 16. It will start at 6:15 p.m. followed by the Camp Solidarity program.

Camp Solidarity grew out of a desire of 1930s working families to have a place for weekend visits to the country.

It took years of summer camps for children, annual picnics, weekend building parties and fund-raisers to turn the dream into a year-round residential community.

How it all happened will be the feature of the talk and slide presentation, part of its MVGHS series on local history.

Camp Solidarity resident Jeanette Sladek will talk about the 1930s movement that purchased a Pacific farm and developed a weekend retreat that grew into a year-round community.

Both of Sladek’s grandparents were involved in the development of the community and she has been involved with it since childhood.

As early as 1928, a meeting was called to organize a recreational society of the Workmen’s Benefit Fund, St. Louis. Due to the Depression, the idea was put on hold, but in the mid-1930s a farm committee was formed. By 1937, the committee had $236.

On July 11, 1937, two members drove to Pacific to inspect the farm that became the site of Camp Solidarity. On Aug. 12, the deal was closed to buy the property.

The public is invited to the supper meeting and program. There is no cost, but patrons are asked to bring a covered dish. Drinks and paper goods will be furnished.

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