About the Scouting Movement
The Scouting movement was started in England in 1908 by Lord Robert Baden-Powell, a hero to the British public for his resourceful defense of the South African town of Mafeking during the Boar War. During the war, Baden-Powell discovered that his men did not know basic skills such as woodcraft, first aid, or wilderness survival, so he wrote a handbook called Aids to Scouting which emphasized resourcefullness, adaptability, and the qualities of leadership that frontier conditions and reconnaissance missions demanded. When Baden-Powell returned to England after the war, he found to his surprise that his little handbook had caught the interest of English boys, who were using it to play the game of scouting.
Baden-Powell realized that this boyish game could have far-reaching benefits and decided to test his ideas. In August 1907, he gathered about 20 boys and took them to Brownsea Island off the southern coast of England for a 12-day camp to determine if Baden-Powell’s vision would work. It did. The boys divided into patrols and played games, went on hikes, and learned tracking, pioneering, and more—and they loved it. The next year, Baden-Powell published his book Scouting for Boys and the movement took off. Just two years later, over 30,000 English boys were Scouts, and the number was rapidly growing.
One foggy London day, a Chicago businessman and publisher named William D. Boyce had lost his way in the dense clouds when a boy appeared and offered to take him to his destination. When they arrived, Boyce tried to tip the boy, but the boy refused and courteously explained that he was a Scout and could not accept payment for a Good Turn. Intrigued, Boyce asked the boy about Scouting and was taken to meet with Baden-Powell himself. Boyce was so fascinated by the idea of Scouting that he brought the movement back with him to America, where American boys were seeking the same types of adventure.
From that point forward, the Scouting movement in America took off. The Boy Scouts of America was officially founded on February 8, 1910, and since that time hundreds of millions of young men and women have been Scouts. The Scouting movement is unique in the history of our nation: to youth, it is simply a game they have fun playing; but to those watching, Scouting is a game with a purpose—and that purpose is teaching youth the values of good citizenship and character development. For over a hundred years, Scouting has trained America’s future leaders, and the Blue Grass Council is committed to continuing this mission for many years to come.
About the Blue Grass Council
Scouts from areas as widespread as Lexington, Georgetown, Winchester, Maysville, Pikeville, Barbourville, and Somerset call the Blue Grass Council home. For nearly a hundred years, the Blue Grass Council has continuously served youth and supported the Scouting movement across 55 counties in central and eastern Kentucky. To read about the council’s rich history of serving youth, click here.
For the over 6,800 youth served by the council, Scouting is an exciting adventure which they get to live. In addition to the activities held by packs, troops, and crews, Scouts also get the chance to visit the McKee Scout Reservation, our council camp. Behind the scenes, a dedicated team of hundreds of volunteers and professional Scouters work tirelessly to bring the Scouting program to youth.
Scouting is fun, and the Blue Grass Council is dedicated to supporting and providing the best possible Scouting experience. From summer camp at McKee to unit activities held throughout the year, Scouts in the Blue Grass Council are doing exciting things and living Scouting’s adventure. To find out how to join them, click here.