History of Camp Daggett
Nestled on the west arm of beautiful Walloon Lake in Northern Michigan sits Camp Daggett, a nonprofit organization that has served generations of summer campers and outdoor enthusiasts since it was founded in 1925.
An institution that has weathered the Great Depression and World War II, Camp Daggett’s longevity stems from its thoughtful staffing, purposeful motto, dedicated Board of Trustees, and facilities which have evolved to meet the changing needs of those we serve.
In the late 1890s, Henry R. Daggett, a local business owner in Petoskey, would often take his Presbyterian Sunday School classes to a property he owned on Walloon Lake. A few decades later, in the fall of 1924, a woman named Harriet S. Harper—Henry Daggett’s daughter—donated that same 43-acre parcel of land to be used for a children’s summer camp. The following year, a Petoskey teacher named Walter J. MacMillan opened Camp Daggett on the donated property. “Mac,” as he was known, started with a traditional boys’ summer camp.
According to Harriet Harper, her father believed strongly that “the children in a community are its richest assets, and its future depends upon the influencing of their lives for good.” It is the duty of Camp Daggett’s Board of Trustees, made of members appointed from local service clubs, to keep Henry Daggett’s beliefs alive.
Currently, the Board of Trustees consists of representatives from bi-county service organizations as well as at large representatives from Emmet and Charlevoix counties. Each member works hard to update their clubs and communities on Camp Daggett’s progress and to provide essential support so that camp may offer the best services possible to Northern Michigan children and community members.
For a comprehensive history of Camp Daggett, check out this page: Complete History of Camp Daggett
To honor Henry Daggett and Walter MacMillan’s passion for supporting youth, Camp Daggett has adopted and internalized the following mission statement, which rests at the heart of every camp activity:
Since 1925, Camp Daggett has cherished the tradition of providing quality character-building experiences through educational and recreational programs in a safe, fun environment. We serve all ages, with an emphasis on youth.