The Redwood Bowmen Association, Inc. is a non-profit organization that operates and maintains a 35 acre archery range in the East Bay Regional Park District in the Oakland hills. The archery range is for the enjoyment of the public but is financed and maintained by Redwood Bowmen members.
All skill levels and age groups are represented in our membership. Our members include archers who shoot traditional recurve bows as well as compound bow archers.
Redwood Bowmen Board Of Directors.
Contains excerpts from selected issues of Target Talk, 1956-1960
The Redwood Bowmen Archery Club was first known as the “White Company,” a name adopted for the Club in its first beginnings. The Club was founded on March 26, 1939 at Harold MacQuarrie's Archery Shop on Fruitvale Avenue in Oakland , along with the San Francisco Archers and the Tilden Archers. The name was taken from A. Conan Doyle's novel of English medieval life of the same name title.
Here is an excerpt from:
Chapter XXII- How the Bowmen held Wassail at the “Rose de Guienne:”
"I come to it, my young war-pups. Well, then, the King of France had followed us with fifty thousand men, and he made great haste to catch us, but when he had us he scarce knew what to do with us, for we were so drawn up among hedges and vineyards that they could not come nigh us, save by one lane. On both sides were archers, men-at-arms and knights behind, and in the centre the baggage, with my feather-bed upon a sutler's mule. Three hundred chosen knights came straight for it, and, indeed, they were very brave men, but such a drift of arrows met them that few came back. Then came the Germans, and they also fought very bravely, so that one or two broke through the archers and came as far as the feather-bed, but all to no purpose. Then out rides our own little hothead with the patch over his eye, and my Lord Audley with his four Cheshire squires, and a few others of like kidney, and after them went the prince and Chandos, and then the whole throng of us, with axe and sword, for we had shot away our arrows. Ma foi! it was a foolish thing, for we came forth from the hedges, and there was naught to guard the baggage had they ridden round behind us. But all went well with us, and the king was taken, and little Robby Withstaff and I fell in with a wain with twelve firkins of wine for the king's own table, and, by my hilt! if you ask me what happened after that, I cannot answer you, nor can little Robby Withstaff either."
The White Company Emblem was a Coat of Arms featuring an English Lion – a Redwood tree was added to that Emblem which is now the center piece of the current day Redwood Bowmen logo.
The Club's first open field shoot was held May 14, 1939 at the Oakland Zoological Gardens.
The Rebo Range was expanded originally by purchase of 59 acres of land between Redwood Regional Park and Oakland 's Sequoia Park . The land was acquired for approximately $43,000.00 from the Catholic Archdiocese of San Francisco. The grounds obtained contained large Redwood groves, a portion of the Redwood Bowl, an olive grove planted many years ago and historic 1608 foot Redwood Peak. The area was one of the favorite haunts of Joaquin Miller, Oakland 's famous poet.
The first “Championship Class Tournament” held by the White Company of Oakland on July 17, 1939 posted the following scores:
B. Holmes – 201
The Club's first Constitution and By-Laws were presented at the February 1946 Regular Business meeting. The new Constitution was read by then President Ben Malquist.
Before the adoption of the present “The Redwood Bowmen” name, several other names were considered. Among these were the following suggestions put forth prior to the acceptance of the interim Club name Sequoia Field Archers. It was motioned at the March 6 th , 1941 general meeting that the Club name the “White Company” be changed. Names suggested were as follows: Highland Field Archers, Sequoia Field Archers, Wildwood Field Archers, Oakland Field Archers, East Bay Field Archers, Redwood Peak Field Archers, Skyline Field Archers, and Redwood Rovers.
At this same meeting, presided over by then president Le Roy Smith, member Leo Cornell motioned that the Range be moved to the Redwood Bowl, the motion carried and arrangements were made for installation of the new range on March 23 rd , 1941.
In 1949 The Redwood Bowmen inaugurated a long-standing open shoot tradition called the April Fool Shoot. They started a cycle of one of the craziest tournaments ever staged. Initially there were 84 targets with two simultaneous 42 target tournaments going on. It boasted:
Targets in Technicolor and Cinemascope for that 3-D feeling. Again, the Carnival spirit will prevail and the members will conduct additional novelty events centered in the Redwood Bowl to supplement the fun of the tournament. The Jester, symbol of the April Fool Shoot, will be waiting to welcome you.
The first “Target Talk” newsletter was published in March of 1953. Club Meetings were held at the Dimond Sportsmen's Club, 2003 MacArthur Blvd.
At the Annual Installation Banquet Meeting on December 9 th , 1955 the White Company Emblem and History Book of Records were presented by Harold MacQuarrie to newly elected President Howard Johnson.
The 1955 California State Archery Tournament was held on the Redwood Bowmen Regional Park Range. The shoot began on July 2nd. More than 600 field archers from throughout California assembled on the Rebo Range for the 10th annual California Bowmen Hunters and Field Archers Association Championships. Local clubs in the fray included the Tilden Archers of Berkeley, the San Francisco Archers , the So-Ea-Ba Archers of Castro Valley , the Roving Archers of Richmond, and the San Pablo Associated Sportsmen Archers.
The Redwood Bowmen regularly competed with the Tilden Archers and San Francisco Archers in a friendly but spirited competition known as the Tri-City Shoot. Hosting of the Tri-City Shoot rotated among the clubs and was usually held on the 4 th Sunday of the month in the late summer and early fall months. The Rebo spirit at these early “Tri-Club” competitions was reminiscent of the bawdy medieval mood of A. Conan Doyle's White Company , evident in the “Rebo Song” sung by members at these competitions:
The REBO Song
(Tune – You Are My Sunshine)
We are the Rebos, the deadly Rebos
When on the range, or in brushy woodland,
We are the gals of the Deadly Rebos,
We are the Rebos, the Deadly Rebos,
The Redwood Bowmen have maintained the Tri-City Shoot tradition through an annual “Tri-Club Shoot” competition between Redwood Bowmen, Diablo Bowmen , and the Briones Archers . The Tri-Club Shoot takes place every year on the same day as the NCFAA Regional Field Archery Championships. Like the original Tri-City Shoot, the winning club takes the trophy home and is responsible for adding the badge commemorating their win. The Redwood Bowmen have won the Tri-Club Shoot nine years in a row as of 2007.