Donate Now

History of the Takodah YMCA

The Takodah YMCA has come a long way since being organized in 1913. In 1916, our camp was named Takodah and we established our motto “Friendly to All”, reflecting our commitment to fostering belonging, achievement, autonomy, and relationships. Many things have changed, but we are still guided by our values, traditions, and dedication to youth.

TIMELINE

Dec. 8, 1913

Cheshire County YMCA (CCYMCA) formally organized

1914

First County Y Camping Program, “Camp Primitive” running for two weeks on Swanzey Lake under the leadership of Howard T. Ball

1916

Daniel Lorentz leads Cheshire County YMCA summer camp on Tolman Pond

First American flag given by Elgin Jones

1919

First summer on present site in Richmond, NH

1920

Purchased first 60 acres on Cass Pond

1921

Uncle Oscar and Aunt Frances Elwell join CCYMCA serving for 50 years

1922

Aunt Frances starts Girls’ Programs

1938

Hurricane destroys hundreds of pine and hemlock trees; much of the wood was used to build new cabins

1946

Martha Fisher joins CCYMCA, serving for 47 years as Registrar and Administrative Assistant

1953

Y Parent/Child Programming, Navajo Indian Guide Tribe founded to become the longest continually operating Guide Tribe in the country

1971

Fred Toot becomes Director of CCYMCA, focusing efforts on providing programming to all Cheshire County communities

1973

Know Your Government Tours began, would eventually morph into the American Heritage Tour

1975

New England Heritage Tour begun by Vernon Young of Peterborough Middle School

1976

Day Camp program designed by Bill Allen

1978

“Buffalo” Bob Smith becomes first year-round resident on Takodah property; Bob served from 1975-1985

1978

Under the leadership of J.E.F. Craig, Hornet’s Nest Day Camp is developed along with soccer and tennis camps, Mini Camp, a computer camp, and horsemanship

1993

Outdoor Education for local schools developed and expanded by Mike Hoefer, David R. Dahl, and William E. Parkman

1999

Craig Dining Hall completed

2004

The corporate name changed from the Cheshire County YMCA to the Cheshire YMCA

2011

North Camp built to offer concurrent boys’ and girls’ programming

2016

Centennial Celebration on the shores of Cass Pond and name changed from Cheshire YMCA to Takodah YMCA