Eagle Scout Project Highlights Overlooked History

History is full people whose impact was significant but whose stories may have been overlooked or forgotten. When he learned of just such a story in his own community, Scout Jake W. knew he’d found an Eagle Scout project he wanted to tackle head on.

The Portland Tribune shares the story of Jake’s Eagle Scout project, which has its origins in the foundation of the very State of Oregon itself.

Jake learned that the final resting place of Ewing Young, a key, but overlooked, figure in the history of Oregon, was nearby in his community, but the gravesite did not feature any information on the man buried there.

Eagle Scout Project Highlights Overlooked History
Scout Jake W. stands by the marker detailing the history of Ewing Young. (photo credit: The Portland Tribune)

Through some research and detective work, Jake tracked down the owner of the land upon which Young was buried. Young’s grave was currently marked only by an enormous nearly 175-year-old oak tree growing on the spot where he was buried.

While the tree was a lovely natural marker originally planted by one of Ewing Young’s friends, Jake knew the spot needed something more to recognize the contribution of this man to the history of the state.

Jake wanted all who passed by the site to appreciate not just the majestic tree but also the man buried beneath it. He knew the site needed some type of permanent historical marker with information about Ewing Young.

After a lengthy discussion with the landowner, who provided some important historical background on Ewing Young, Jake also worked closely with local and state historical societies over the ensuing months to help ensure that his Eagle Scout project would recognize Young properly and provide value to the residents of the community and the state.

To complete the Eagle Scout project, Jake worked closely with others in researching, planning, funding, constructing, transporting, and installing a structure that provided historical information on Ewing Young. The Scout and his team placed the structure nearby the oak tree, where it would make it possible for viewers to take in the beauty of the site while learning about the historical figure of Young. Jake and the landowners dedicated the site on January 10.

If you would like to read more about Jake’s Eagle Scout project and the man whose life inspired it, visit The Portland Tribune for the full story.



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This blog is managed and written by staff of the Communications Department of the Boy Scouts of America.