For the 50th anniversary of the Morris-Sussex Area Council, scouts from several troops came together for a fall camporee at the Schiff Nature Preserve in Mendham in 1986. The camporee took place on a piece of property owned by Mr. William Hillcourt, the founder and former Scoutmaster Troop 1 in Mendham, New Jersey.
Also known as “Green Bar Bill,” Mr. Hillcourt was also a guest speaker at the event. Mr. Hillcourt was an influential leader in the Boy Scouts of America for over 60 years, writing three editions of the Boy Scout Handbook and establishing the Wood Badge adult scout leader training program, which was run for the first time on the grounds in which this camporee took place. Mr. Hillcourt was notable for his teaching in the areas of woodcraft, troop and patrol structure, and training.
The event was also important for being the last major camporee on the land that used to be the Mortimer L. Schiff Scout Reservation, which served as the BSA’s National Training Center until 1979 when it moved to Philmont Scout Ranch in New Mexico. Mr. Hillcourt is buried near the lands that are now preserved as the Schiff Nature Preserve.