Wilbert Bernshouse
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Wilbert Holladay Bernshouse (1913 - 2007)

Wilbert Holladay Bernshouse
Born in Sumter, Sumter, South Carolina, United Statesmap
Ancestors ancestors
Brother of and [private sister (1920s - unknown)]
Husband of — married 26 Feb 1938 in Sumter, Sumter, South Carolina, United Statesmap
[children unknown]
Died in Sumter, Sumter, South Carolina, United Statesmap
Profile last modified | Created 4 May 2020
This page has been accessed 17 times.


Wilbert was born in 1913. He passed away in 2007.

  • A write up about Wilbert in the local Sumter newspaper, The Item, the issue of 1 June 2003, indicates that he joined the Boy Scouts at age 14 and became the 3rd Sumterite to become an Eagle Scout (pic of him & Werber Bryan getting awards in 1930, HERE). He was educated in the city schools and was a Sumter High School class of 1931 (http://www.edmundshigh.com/3131.html) graduate. In his day, Wilbert was the southeastern USA dean of scoutmasters, Boy Scouts of America! He had an amazing, positive, male impact on hundreds of Sumter boys as additions to the impacts that their own fathers made. Another Sumterite making this kind of impact on boys was Burke Watson.

The first newspaper mention that I have seen about scouting in Sumter was in the 29 May 1920 issue of the Watchman & Southron, image 5, column 2 one-third down the page (https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn93067846/1920-05-29/ed-1/seq-5/) which included an appeal for scoutmasters. The first Eagle Scout in Sumter County, S. C. was Sam Harby who was in Troop 1, W. M. Levi, scoutmaster.

  • Mr. Bernshouse was thoroughly involved with scouting for over 40 years. Therefore, his family was thoroughly involved. First, he was cubmaster of Cub Scouts Pack 338 for 3 years. Then he became scoutmaster of troop 38 and then of troop 336 for 25 years & on troop & district committees for another 10 years. By the time he retired from scouting, he was an awardee of the Silver Beaver award & had produced 75 Eagle Scouts, more than any other scoutmaster in the southeastern USA.

During Great Depression times, he was with the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) building fire towers. An avid photographer, Wilbert documented a segment of the history of Sumter's Trinity United Methodist Church (the church archives are rich with his contributions).

Otherwise, he was a longtime, valued employee of the Sumter Pigeon Plant and member of Trinity United Methodist Church. He and Virginia lived and raised their family on Morgan Ave. close to the Pigeon Plant. Their children, a boy & a girl, are W. D. "David" Bernshouse & Wilbur B. Shumaker (Mrs. N. "Jeff", Jr.).

  • As a personal aside, Wilbert's mother, Elizabeth, was renowned in my family for her "chocolate cake roll desert" (http://www.theeffectivetruth.info/chocolate_roll.html). My mother, Mildred Brown Shaw, helped her for years with a health issue and was often rewarded with a roll.


  • *Find a Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed 04 May 2020), memorial page for Wilbert Holladay Bernshouse (10 Sep 1913–26 Jul 2007), Find a Grave Memorial no. 100363365, citing Sumter Cemetery, Sumter, Sumter County, South Carolina, USA ; Maintained by Ervin Shaw (contributor 47632367) .

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