Crescent Bay Historical Project       CONTACT   Page Finder INDEX
Camp Josepho - Murals  
About the Camp Josepho Murals
 
Artist: Teresa (Tess) Razalle Carter (1888-1972)
9 individual panels, each 8 feet tall.
Overall dimensions: approximately 40' W x 8' H
Oil on wood, unframed

 
 
1                         2                           3                           4                    5            6                 7                                8                          9

(click on any panel number to see close-up)
 
          These murals flank the stage in the lodge at Camp Josepho. They depict local Crescent Bay Scouts saluting, with the Pacific Ocean in the background. Panel no. 4, the best known panel, shows Alden Barber (later to become Chief Scout Executive of the BSA) as 1943 Camp Josepho Director. Each panel is bordered by trees painted to serve as frames.
          Artist Teresa Sylvia Razalle Carter, the daughter of artist Emma and Johnathan Razalle, was born in Los Angeles on August 8, 1888. She moved to Pasadena, CA in 1909 and had a painting studio in the Blanchard Building until 1932 and later at 1942 Fourteenth St. in Santa Monica. She married a man named Carter and moved to Thousand Oaks, CA where she resided until her death on March 15, 1972. The subject matter of the Camp Josepho murals is unique amongst her other works which consisted largely of mythological themes and a fascination with the spiritual, as seen in her California Mission series.
          It is not clear how Razalle Carter came to paint the Camp Josepho murals or who commissioned the paintings. One theory is that her work had come to the attention of Anatol Josepho, perhaps during the exhibition of her paintings at the Santa Monica Women's Club in 1939. It is not known if Josepho had purchased or commissioned any of her paintings for his personal residence and then later commissioned her to decorate the lodge after it opened in 1941. The mural panels may not have been painted at Camp Josepho. According to a 1999 interview with Bill Mac Beth (Scout in lower right of panel no. 1), photos of Scouts in camp were taken and then rearranged as they were painted on the panels. (Note: the Pacific Ocean vistas depicted in each panel cannot be seen anywhere from the camp's location in Rustic Canyon.)
          Work on the  murals is presumed to have started in 1943 and completed in 1944. The order in which the panels were completed and attached to the lodge walls is not known and remains the subject of much speculation.


The Panels
 
    Panel 1
 
  Panel 2
 
  Panel 2
Close-Up
                   

  Larry Miller wears 1944 Camp Josepho patch, wings & another patch marked "Douglas" on his pocket. Purpose of this later patch is unknown. Larry was the son of "Skipper" Al Miller.
   
Troop 11 Scouts from Santa Monica, CA, wearing green & white neckerchiefs. L-R: unknownunknown • Len Smitz •
 Bill Mac Beth
wearing 1944 Camp Josepho patch.

   
Troop 11 Scouts wearing green & white neckerchiefs. L-R: George Keatly •
 Phil Ortle • Larry Miller
in the center with Blue neckerchief (possibly Troop 63, Venice, CA). Two scouts on right are unidentified.
   



  
Panel 3
 

  Panel 4
 
  Panel 5
 
     Panel 5
Close-Up
                 






 


Scout is depicted wearing Tamet Lodge OA insignia on pocket flap. This is the earliest documented evidence of OA insignia being worn on the flap for any Lodge in the country.

Unidentified Sea Scouts. The Commodore could possibly be Crescent Bay Council Executive F.R. "Uncle Bob" Hill. Uncle Bob was Camp Josepho Director in 1944 and was photographed many times wearing the exact Commodore's uniform seen here. This panel was mounted to the wall differently than the other panels on the left side, leading to speculation that it covered or replaced an unknown original panel. Other differences in the painting style (especially in the faces) fueled folklore over the years that panel 3 was not only completed at a different time but may have been painted by a different artist. Actually, there are similarities between this panel and panel 8, both of which have light green trees.

 
1943 Camp Josepho staff members wearing yellow staff neckerchiefs. Features Alden Barber, 1943 Camp Director, wearing Order of the Arrow sash. Barber, who went on to become Chief Scout Executive of the BSA, served his first professional scouting duties in Crescent Bay Council.
 Other staff members are thought to be:
Back Row L-R: Al McCluney • Dave Hyler. Front Right: Bob Smith
 






 
Unidentified Scout, possibly from Troop 63, Venice, CA.

   


 
      Panel 6
 
  Panel 7
 

  Panel 8
 
     
    Warren Spear from Troop 11, Santa Monica, CA




 
 
Unidentified Cub Scouts from Pack 82, Westwood, CA and a Scout who is thought to be Johnny Sheffield, the child actor who played "Boy" in the original Tazran movies (1939-47). It is well documented that Sheffield's parents enrolled him in multiple summer sessions at Camp Josepho in the early 1940's while they traveled abroad.
 
Unidentified Scouts and a Cub. Like the Sea Scout panel no. 3, this panel has light green tree tops and is attached to the wall differently than the other panels on the right side. Judging from the qualities of the paintings themselves, it would appear that panels 3 and 8 were painted as a pair at a different time than the other panels.
 


 
         Panel 9
 
                                                 Panel 9
                                              Close-Ups

       
  
 
       
       

Scout is from Troop 48, Culver City, CA

 
Cub is from Pack 19, Culver City,CA and 

 
Unidentified Scouts and Cubs.
This panel is the farthest to the right of the stage and its right side was up against the 2nd floor balcony. When the balcony railing was replaced with a wall in the late1940's, the wall was built over the panel, covering part of the artist's signature.

 
       

       
         

 
back to top

 
Website Builder