Crystal Lake and Manning Lake

Camp Leo

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The Boy Scout's Camp Bell, on Manning Lake, was previously known as Camp Leo from 1946 to 1986 and had a colorful and interesting history before being shut down. Before this, it was known as Camp Manning. Follow the link below for more information.


State Removes Seven Youths from Summer Camp - Nashua Telegraph - 1986 - p.22

Court Orders Camp Charity be Dissolved - 1988 - see p. 28

Daniel Webster Council vs. St. James Assoc. a.k.a. Camp Leo

By Frederick Chesson


".....But don’t get the idea that it was all work and no play on Diamond Island! Especially when the Boy Scouts came to visit. Heavily involved in Scouting in Lincoln, Mass, Carroll Spooner invited the Boy Scouts from Camp Manning in Gilmanton to paddle to Diamond Island and spend every Tuesday overnight before paddling back to Alton Bay where the Scouts were picked up. “Dad knew that Diamond Island was a great place for the Scouts to come and I loved scouting, so it was just great! Girl Scouts from Boston also paddled to the island from their camp on Treasure Island to spend the night.”

From the History of Diamond Island - Lake Winnipesaukee Historical Society




Together Hidden Valley and Camp Bell make up the Griswold Scout Reservation which covers over 3,500 acres (14 km2) including several lakes, ponds, and mountains. The land currently used primarily by Camp Bell has been used as the homes of many other camps, most recently Camp Manning, which after being sold by the Daniel Webster Council to private owners, changed ownership several times and had previously existed as a camp run by various organization such as the YMCA who called it Camp Leo. Camp Bell was named for an attorney member of the Council's Executive Board who was instrumental in reacquiring the property for the Daniel Webster Council.

Leonard W. Francis - Founder and Director of Camp Leo

Crystal Lake and Manning Lake are located in the foothills of the Belknap Mountains in beautiful Gilmanton Iron Works

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Panorama with mountains and lakes labeled - by dcr - click on photo to enlarge
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