The original Flag Hill was situated atop a small hill between the current Ad Building and the Infirmary. There were six flag poles, cemented into the ground (five for the foreign flags and a slightly taller pole out front to fly the American flag). According to an old program, what we knew as “Flag Hill” was constructed in 1945 through funds donated by the Cranston Rotary Club. A ceremony which was referred to as “The Dedication of the Flags of The United Nations” was held on August 1, 1945. The governor of RhodeIsland, J. Howard McGrath was the guest of honor who arrived at Camp Fuller by boat. Several members of the Cranston Rotary Club along with a platoon from the Quonset Marine Barracks were also in attendance. The ceremony was hosted by Camp Director, Andrew Reed. Charles Hanscomb represented the Apache Honor Society as well.
Guests were invited to use the sports facilities and participate in a regatta which was hosted by the Camp Fuller Skippers. The camp boat, “The Bobby Sea” was available for the guests or for anyone interested in a short boat ride around Salt Pond. The evening was capped with a cookout which included Cherry stones on the half shell, Rhode Island chowder and blueberry pie a la mode. All of the ingredients for the meal were gathered by campers on the grounds of Fuller. A baseball game wrapped up the day’s events with the Camp Fuller Staff playing the Cranston Rotary Club. We do not know who won the game, but let’s assume Fuller got the “W”.
Given the proximity to the official end of World War II, you could speculate that this monument was erected as a celebration to the end of the war and may have served as an olive branch to the world given the foreign flags that were meant to be flown in unison with the Stars and Stripes. The old “Flag Hill” was used daily while camp was in session. The voices of many directors standing below the hill can still be heard: “Ready on the Hill?” The reply from the top “Ready” would mark the beginning of the daily flag raising and the reciting of the Pledge of Allegiance by the entire camp during morning line up.
The recent capital improvements which have been made at camp have included a new home for “Flag Hill”. The old flag poles were removed and have been replaced with beautiful landscaping around and on top of the hill. Natural plantings and granite steps have become a part of this historic area.
The new “Flag Hill” has been upgraded and moved to the open space between the Ad Building and the Dining Hall. Beautiful wood flag poles now sit atop the slope and are accompanied by more natural stone work and steps. The new open space now allows for large gatherings and ceremonies and, of course, the daily flag raising and lowering. “Ready on the Hill?” still commands the attention of the camp to start and end each day.