Dayton Boy Scout unveils Eagle Scout project at Rosenwald Museum

Dayton Eagle Scout candidate Sammy Wells unveiled his new sign at the Annie E. Colbert/Rosenwald Museum on June 20. The unveiling was attended by members of the museum board, Dayton City Council and Dayton ISD staff.

By Vanesa Brashier,

The Annie E. Colbert/Rosenwald Museum in Dayton has a new sign to draw attention to visitors. The purple and yellow sign – a project of Eagle Scout hopeful Sammy Wells – was unveiled at a ceremony on June 20 with Dayton city and school leaders in attendance.

Wells is a member of Trooper 8, sponsored by Eastgate Church of Dayton. The Boy Scout troop has approximately 30 members and is supervised by Scoutmaster Paul Newton. The new sign is the project that Wells hopes will help him attain his Eagle Scout rank, the highest honor in Boy Scouts.

“An Eagle Scout service project has to benefit the community. He has to work or supervise other people and work with a project sponsor. There are decisions that have to be made, plans that have to be made, budgets to work out and funds that have to be raised,” Newton explained during the ceremony.

Newton said Eagle Scout projects are challenging for young teens who have never been put into supervisory or managing roles.

“It’s quite an accomplishment to attain Eagle Scout. Sammy did the work. He and the other Scouts who helped him did the work,” said Newton, who then thanked Lynda Young for helping Scouts find community projects in the Dayton area.

“This is the second project since I’ve been Scoutmaster that we’ve had an opportunity to work with her. We had another Scout who worked on cemetery mapping of Acie Cemetery. Thank you, Mrs. Lynda, for sending those projects our way,” Newton said. “We have many Scouts who want to attain Eagle Scout status and it’s sometimes hard to find the right projects that are both a benefit to the community and the right size for a Scout to handle.”

Diane Paul, who serves on the museum board, presented Wells with a certificate of appreciation for his work. Wells explained that before the service project began, he was unaware of the museum’s existence.

“I asked people at my school and others if they knew of the Rosenwald Museum and quite a few had never heard of it and didn’t know the museum existed,” Wells said. “That inspired me to create a sign so that more people will know about it, to bring them in to learn about the history of Dayton.”

Wells added that he was honored to work on something that improves the community and the future of the museum.

Wells is one child born in a set of triplets – two sons and one daughter – to Marty Wells and Dawn Wells of Dayton. Wells’ brother, Marshall, was recognized on Friday after he attained his Eagle Scout rank. Marshall’s project involved the renovation of a bridge at Dayton High School. The bridge is used by the marching band as it moves equipment to and from the practice field.

Marshall is the 15th Eagle Scout for Troop 8 of Dayton since it was founded in 2005. If Sammy is successful in his endeavors, he will become the 16th Eagle Scout for Troop 8. He must first go before a Board of Review where his project will be evaluated. The date for that review could be set in late summer or fall.

About the Colbert-Rosenwald School Museum

The building that houses the museum today was once a school for black students. In those days, it was referred to as the Dayton Colored School. Julius Rosenwald paid for the construction of more than 5,000 schools for black children, including the one in Dayton, which was built in 1933.

In 1935, it was renamed for Annie E. Colbert, who came to Dayton in 1892 to teach black students. In 2011, the Rosenwald School was restored. It opened to the public as a museum in 2011.

The museum is located at 231 S. Colbert St. on the Colbert Elementary Campus.

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