Popular summer camp performer Pete Seeger dies at 94

American folk singer and popular summer camp performer Pete Seeger died Monday at age 94. Seeger was an alumnus of Camp Rising Sun, a summer leadership camp in Red Hook, New York, he attended in 1936 and a regular presence at camps either as a performer or as an influence on campfire sing-alongs.

He released a 1955 recording called Camp Songs under the moniker Song Swappers with Erik Darling on Folkways Records. Check it out HERE. He was also a regular visitor to the interracial left-wing camp Camp Woodland in New York.

Seeger’s older brother, John, was a longtime camp director at Camp Killooleet in Hancock, Vermont. One of Pete’s final performances with his sister Peggy was at a benefit last May for the camp’s flood recovery in memory of his brother (John died in January 2013).

Seeger last visited Camp Rising Sun in 2012. Below is a video of him playing his signature banjo and singing with the campers. Surprise Lake Camp also has some videos of Seeger performing with campers in 2011.

For more on Seeger’s life, you can read his obituary in the New York Times.

Matt Ralph

Matt Ralph

I'm the editor of Summer Camp Culture and also blog at Tangzine.com and MatthewRalph.com. I live in the Philadelphia area and went to camps and camp meetings growing up in Ohio, Maryland and New Jersey.

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