Today marks the Boy Scouts of America’s 109th birthday. Let’s take a look at where it all began and how far we’ve come. 

Our Long, Rich History

With over 100 years of history, the Boy Scouts of America has changed and grown so much. We’ll retrace our steps to the very beginning with William Boyce and then come full circle to where we are now. Enjoy the journey with us!

Then

William Boyce, an American businessman, got lost while walking the streets of London in 1909. A young boy offered to help him find his way. Boyce wanted to compensate him, but the boy declined. He explained that he was a Scout and it was his duty to help and Scouts never take money for doing good turns. Interested, William Boyce met with British Boy Scout founder Robert Baden-Powell. Boyce knew that boys back home in America could benefit from a program like the Boy Scouts. The official papers establishing the Boy Scouts of America were signed on February 8, 1910, which is why we celebrate today as the birthday of the BSA. 

For a brief history of the Boy Scouts of America, click here.

Now

We’ve created an organization rooted in building youth who are responsible citizens and who exemplify the character attributes we teach. Heading into the 109th year of Scouting, we have between 25 and 40 million Scouts worldwide. In the United States alone, there are more than 2.4 million youth participants and nearly one million adult volunteers. We’re making a huge impact on youth, and we take that responsibility very seriously. That’s why we continue to change and improve things in our programs and training.

This year alone we’ve seen a lot of improvements. Here are some:

  • The introduction of the Scout Me In program
  • Scoutbook is now free
  • A new and improved Youth Protection Training

Fun Fact: The Scout Law Origins

The Scout Law is based on the nine laws that are in the book Scouting for Boys published by Baden-Powell in 1908. In 1910, the Boy Scouts of America published twelve points for the Scout Law to make it simpler and easier to follow.

Birthday Fun: Quiz Time!

What are the 13 merit badge requirements out of the 21 merit badges required to become an Eagle Scout? Choose the 13 from the 21 listed below.

  1. First Aid
  2. Medicine
  3. Citizenship in the Community
  4. Communication
  5. Citizenship in the Nation
  6. Animal Science
  7. Citizenship in the World
  8. Wilderness Survival
  9. Cooking
  10. Personal Fitness
  11. Moviemaking
  12. Emergency Preparedness/Lifesaving
  13. Weather
  14. Environmental Science/Sustainability
  15. Nature
  16. Personal Management
  17. Swimming/Hiking/Cycling
  18. Scouting Heritage
  19. Camping
  20. Forestry
  21. Family Life

Find the answers below. For some more fun, check out this Boy Scout Trial trivia quiz. Tell us how well you did!

 

answers: 1, 3, 4, 5, 7, 9, 10, 12, 14, 16, 17, 19, 21

 

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is a Westminster College graduate who majored in communication and minored in environmental studies. She is currently a Marketing Associate at the Utah National Parks Council. She loves to travel and get outside as often as she can. Growing up overseas on military bases she fulfilled her desires to travel to many different countries. After high school, she returned stateside to pursue her passion for the environment and acquire her Bachelor's degree.

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