December 6, 2010

Scouting Corner – Year of Celebration

By Thomas McDermott
Scout Executive, Illiowa Council
Boy Scouts of America

Scouts put the OUTING in SCOUTING

For a century, the Boy Scouts of America has helped build the future leaders of this country by combining educational activities and lifelong values with fun. The Boy Scouts of America believes and knows that helping youth is a key to building a more conscientious, responsible, and productive society. Through a turbulent and changing century, the Boy Scouts of America has held fast to the ethical morals and principles that this organization was founded upon.

Illowa Council covers Scott, Muscatine, Clinton, most of Jackson and part of Cedar counties in Iowa and Rock Island, Mercer, Henry, Knox, Warren, McDonough, and part of Stark and Bureau counties in Illinois. We in Illowa Council are proud of the activities and advancements that our youth have made during this Celebration Year. We looked forward to the New Frontier with the old principles as our cornerstone.

And now, the final ten things of the …100 Things You Didn’t Know About Scouting

10. In May 1964, 29 of American’s 30 astronauts visited Philmont for a two-week training trip to learn geological mapping and seismographic studies in preparation for the Apollo programs.

9. The first Eagle Scout to earn all available merit badges was Leon Wallace in 1922. [ed note: This fall Illowa Council had an Eagle that earned all of the available merit badges – Zac Greve from Troop 82 in Bettendorf. He earned 129 badges. See last month’s article.]

8. Former Congressmen Alan Simpson and Norman Mineta served together from the mid-1970s to the late 1990s. They met as Boy Scouts during World War II, when Simpson’s troop from Cody, Wyoming, visited the internment camp where Mineta and his Japanese immigrant parents were being held. The two became—and have remained—close friends and political allies.

7. For all but two years from 1925 to 1976, illustrator Norman Rockwell illustrated the annual Brown & Bigelow Boy Scout calendar—for free.

6. One of Scouting’s most popular traditions, patch trading, has bloomed into a full-fledged hobby. Some rare patches are worth thousands of dollars.

5. The BSA is the second-largest Scouting organization in the world. The largest is in Indonesia.

4. James E. West was the BSA’s first Chief Scout Executive. When he took the position in 1911, he agreed to serve six months. At his retirement in 1943, he was given the title of Chief Scout.

3. Boys’ Life magazine, which goes to 1.1 million Scouts each month, was started by an 18-year-old Scout, Joseph Lane, in 1911. A year later, the Boy Scouts of America bought the magazine for $6,100—about $1 per subscriber.

2. The Invention merit badge (1911–1918) required the candidate to obtain a patent.

1. Neil Armstrong, the first man to walk on the moon, is an Eagle Scout. When he said, “The Eagle has landed,” he wasn’t kidding. In 1969, Armstrong became the first Eagle Scout to be portrayed on a U.S. postage stamp— called “The Man on the Moon.”