The History of Gyantwachia Lodge #255
Gyantwachia Lodge #255 was first organized as part of the Warren County Council, Boy Scouts of America in 1944 as the Chief Cornplanter Lodge at Camp Olmsted. Until 1953 the Lodge was quiet and inactive.
In 1953, Warren County Council re-organized as the Chief Cornplanter Council. At the same time the Lodge was officially re-organized.
When the Lodge members were working to expand their Indian roots in 1956, they selected a new name for the Lodge; "Gyantwachia" meaning "one who plants corn," the Seneca name of Chief Cornplanter. Cornplanter, the son of a Dutch trader from Albany, New York and a Seneca Squaw, was a prominent Seneca Chief during and after the Revolutionary War period. In the French and Indian Wars, he once fought against a British force under Braddock which included a young George Washington. Ironically, Cornplanter would later become a good friend of our Nation's first President as Chief Cornplanter dedicated the last fifty years of his life to preserving peaceful relations with our Nation.
Chief Cornplanter is highly regarded by historians for his efforts in maintaining a permanent peace and preserving the Seneca culture. Camp Olmsted is located on land adjacent to the few remaining acres of the Cornplanter Grant, a parcel of over 600 acres given to him in 1791 by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. His village, Jennesadego, was located here on the banks of the Allegheny River.
The Lodge totem is the Wolf, which was the totem of the Cornplanter clan. Despite its small membership, our Lodge has always been effective; it had a championship dance team through the early and mid-1960's, helped build a new Camp Olmsted to replace the one destroyed to make way for the Allegheny Reservoir, and maintained a dedicated core of Brothers who have helped the Council with many events.