March 20, 2002 - Scouting Museum

A nostalgic tribute to the Boy Scouts, featuring original paintings by Norman Rockwell, is visiting Baton Rouge. The Old Governor's Mansion on North Boulevard has seen many a moving day. But on this day it wasn't a Long moving out or a Davis moving in.

The big truck was delivering 30 priceless paintings, eight of them originals by Norman Rockwell. This nostalgic traveling exhibit is sponsored by the National Scouting Museum. Elizabeth Brantley of the Scouting Museum explains, "This is the Duty to God and Country Tour, so we selected a group of Rockwells that really fit patriotic images, typical American images."

The Rockwells and all the rest of the artwork is just part of the permanent collection of the National Scouting Museum. The museum is fixing to open in a brand new home near Dallas, and Elizabeth Brantley, originally of Port Allen, is its brand new curator. She says she finds inspiration in the artwork which is now in her care. "A lot of them do remind you of home. They have the hometown image of small town kids doing big things for their community", she says.

The exhibit also offers a rare look into the creative process of the genius, from the first rough draft to the detailed charcoal rendering to the finished painting by Norman Rockwell. The exhibit is at the Old Governor's Mansion through Friday, March 22. Admission is free -- a good deal. It normally cost four bucks to get into the mansion.