Our chapter was chartered on May 1, 1979. They held the 1st organizational meeting to form a
GoodSam's Chapter in the Benton, Arkansas area on a Stormy May 3rd 1979 at the First Electric
Co-op in Benton. The organizers were John Allen, Regional Four Activity Director, and Louise
Baldwin. Those attending were Louise and Bud Baldwin, Carl and Lois Baker, A.C. & Francis
Ledbetter*, Bill and Margaret McCarty and Bill Casey, John and Marcella Allen. They braved the
threat of Tornados and donned rain gear and a Goodsam Chapter was organized. Because of
inclement weather, they decided to try again the following week, so letters were sent out, and
an ad was put in the local newspaper and on May 11, 1979, they met at The Commonwealth
Savings Loan building in Benton, and it rained and rained and rained some more, but ALL 36
potential members attended. After a sales pitch by Louise Baldwin, which was not necessary
because any one that would come out in weather like that wanted to join a GoodSam's Chapter.
Nine couples joined and they chose the name, "The Thundering Sam's", the reason, it must have
been because of the weather. The first camp out was at Arlie Moores', at Lake DeGray on June
1, 2, & 3 of 1979, and GUESS WHAT, IT RAINED. They had to be transported in shifts to the
pavillion for a Potluck and Business meeting, BUT their spirits were not dampened. The old adage
"HISTORY REPEATS ITSELF" is true, as it rained for the first seven meetings. They chose Black
for the color of their vest and the patch was designed by Louise and Bud Baldwin depicting a fish
holding an umbrella in a lake surrounded by trees and mountains on an Arkansas shaped patch.
While most of the members reside in the City of Benton, AR., We have members from surrounding areas.
Currently (as of October 18, 2014) we have 14 rigs/couples. We are one of the Best chapters in the state,
Through the years, the Thundering Sams membership has been active with support to several
Charter Members Presidents