Camp Leatherwood was the “dream come true” of David Mosley, minister at White Bluff Church of Christ from the 1960s through most of the 1970s. Previously he had been involved with the organization and construction of Camp Indigan in Indiana. He had also served as director and counselor in many other Tennessee Christian camps.

In 1975, he organized Mid-Summer Bible Camp with the help and support from members of White Bluff. Their first week of camp was conducted at Natchez Trace State Park in 1975. For the next several years, Mid-Summer Bible Camp was moved to Montgomery Bell State Park.

During these years, Mr. Mosley was searching for property in the White Bluff area to build a camp. In 1982, two prominent families in the White Bluff area donated two tracks of adjoining land of 10 acres each to form the current camp known as Camp Leatherwood. Through the generous donations of the Spann family and the Larkins family, the dream became a reality.

In 1986, the first weeks of camp were conducted at the new facility. It took about five years to complete the construction of the camp. Most of the work was done by volunteer labor and donated materials. There are way too many donating individuals and business to try to mention. Many of the key people who were instrumental in the construction of the camp have moved on to their reward. A debt of thanks is owed to all involved.

Soon after the first year, other congregations began asking about the possibility of using Camp Leatherwood. The Brentwood Hills, Crieve Hall, Columbia, Tusculum, Meads Chapel, and Waverly churches soon began to hold their camps at Camp Leatherwood. During the fall of each year, the camp was also used for youth retreats, hay rides, family reunions, cookouts and other types of activities. There have even been a couple of weddings. The Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts held several camp outs as well.

Through the years, several improvements were made to the camp. In 2000, a swimming pool was added. A pool house to protect the mechanical equipment and provide rest rooms was added in 2003. Until that time, all camps using Camp Leatherwood had to rent time from Hillmont Camp to use their pool, so the addition of the pool made life much simpler for Camp Leatherwood users.

Other improvements included the addition of three new cabins. There were major renovations made to both the boys’ and girls’ bathhouses. Brentwood Hills provided funds for an additional bathhouse and sleeping area. Most of the cabins have had the roofs replaced. Through the years, air conditioning units had been donated to relieve the heat in the kitchen and dining hall. Also, the snack shack has been remodeled and air conditioned.

Then tragedy struck in February of 2016. In the middle of the night during a storm, the dining hall burned to the ground. The cause of the fire was never determined, but it is believed to be electrical. It was a total loss, as the dining hall was uninsured. Insurance could not be obtained due to the lack of a fire suppression system in the kitchen and the camp sat empty and unattended for 9-10 months out of the year.

Since 2016, camp cooking and serving meals has been conducted under a big tent. The tent was erected on the original concrete slab and a temporary kitchen was constructed. Camps continued, and camp users know the rest of the story.

The good Lord willing, construction for the new Lodge will begin in the fall of 2018 and the new facility will be open for business in June of 2019.