Inverview with a 16 Year Old Documentary Filmaker

Posted on 6/11/2010 at 4:35:18 PM

At Scouterblog.com, Todd Kelly just posted an interview with Blake Cortright, the 16-year-old Eagle Scout who recently produced “The First Encampment”, a documentary about the first Boy Scout Camp in the United States, held at Silver Bay YMCA Camp in the Adirondacks in 1910.

Link to the Interview Here.  http://scouterblog.com/2010/06/11/interview-with-blake-cortright/

Link to The First Encampment Website Here

Purchase The First Encampment Here, With an Exclusive Big Rock Publishing Scouting BONUS.

Early Boy Scouts of America Headquarters – Then and Now

Posted on 5/23/2010 at 7:31:00 PM

New York City is a beautiful and old city – at least by American standards, so I went back to check on the old digs of the Boy Scouts of America offices from the earliest days of the organization.

First, the headquarters was located at 200 5th Avenue, New York, NY in a beautiful old building. Below, is a photo of the front of this headquarters building, scanned from the August 15, 1918 issue of Scouting Magazine, that included the BSA Annual Report to Congress. James E. West, Ernest Thompson Seton and Daniel Carter Beard (Dan Beard) worked here in this building in those early days. The Boy Scout National Office at that time employed fewer people (45) than many local council do today.

The entrance to the Fifth Avenue building, corner of Fifth and Twenty-third Street, New York, NY, as it looked during the WWI Liberty Bond Campaign. The Boy Scouts of America Offices occupied approximately 12,300 square feet on the sixth, eighth and twelfth floors.

The entrance to the Fifth Avenue building, corner of Fifth and Twenty-third Street, New York, NY, as it looked during the WWI Liberty Bond Campaign. The Boy Scouts of America Offices occupied approximately 12,300 square feet on the sixth, eighth and twelfth floors.

Here is  a photo of the front of the building as it appears today (taken from Google Maps Street View). You can clearly see the arch remains, but the old wooden revolving doors have been replace by modern glass ones.

200 Fifth Ave, New York, NY courtesy of Google Maps Street View

The entrance to the Fifth Avenue building, corner of Fifth and Twenty-third Street, New York, NY, as it appears on Google Maps Street View in April 2010.

In the near future, I will post some photos of the inside of the Boy Scout offices that occupied this building in the earliest days of the movement.

Please comment below and let me know what other historical photos or topics you would like to see covered in this space. Thank you for reading DanielCarterBeard.net

A Little Bit of Information about the Sons of Daniel Boone

Posted on 5/19/2010 at 7:47:04 PM

Foundation of the Sons of Daniel Boone, Boy Pioneers, and the Boy Scouts of America

As Editor of Recreation magazine, Daniel Beard created the Sons of Daniel Boone in 1905 as an organization to carry his life’s work of conservation and outdoor life to American boys.

Ranks and Application of the Patrol Method

The Sons of Daniel Boone did not use rank advancements like the Boy Scouts, although all members were considered “Tenderfoot” until they attained the level of Scout. There was also a method for identifying its members similar to the patrol method. The members were assigned to “Stockades” (similar to patrols), eight boys made a “Stockade” and four stockades made a “Fort”. Each officer within the Fort took the title and totem (symbols) of one of eight different American frontiersmen:

  • Daniel Boone -President. His totem was a powder-horn.
  • Simon Kenton – Vice-president. His totem was a tomahawk.
  • Kit Carson – Treasurer. His totem was an arrowhead.
  • John Audobon – Librarian. His totem was a bird.
  • Johnny Appleseed – Forester. His totem was a tree.
  • Davy Crockett -Secretary. His totem was a coonskin cap.
  • George Catlin – Totem Painter. His totem was a buffalo head.

Later, after Recreation magazine was sold, Beard joined the staff of Woman’s Home Companion and took the Sons of Daniel Boone with him. Later, Beard resigned from Woman’s Home Companion, but the magazine retained the name “Sons of Daniel Boone”. Beard was forced to recreate the entire organization from scratch, and called it the “Boy Pioneers” – not to be confused, as it sometimes is, with the later “Boy Pioneers” organization of the Communist philosophy.

The Development of the Uniform

For the uniform of the Sons of Daniel Boone, and the Boy Pioneers, Beard worked with Colonel Gignilliat of the Woodcrafters, another boys’ organization to adopt a somewhat standard uniform for all the organizations.

They adopted the cowboy Stetson that Beard described as being “interwoven with the winning of the Western plains”. He had long used it and felt there was nothing better as a shield against the weather. It was Theodore Roosevelt’s Rough Riders on their return from the Spanish American War that showed Beard how to fix the backstrap or barbiquejo, to keep the hat on the head.

The rest of the uniform consisted of a short sleeved woolen shirt open at the neck, shorts or flappers, with long woolen stockings.

The handkerchief around the neck, or neckerchief, also came from the cowboys.

Roosevelt Pulls It All Together

In 1907, President Theodore Roosevelt summoned Daniel Beard in Washington, DC.  At the meeting,  Roosevelt “recruited” John Muir, Joaquin Miller, John Burroughs, Admiral Dewey, and his Chief of Staff Maj Gen Bell, along with Beard and Ernest Thompson Seton to a de facto board of directors of a new organization that would become a combination of these groups, or The Boy Scouts of America.

Who Was Dan Beard?

Posted on 5/19/2010 at 5:08:11 PM

Daniel Carter Beard (1850 – 1941) was one of the founders of the Boy Scouts of America. As a famous illustrator, naturalist, author and activist, Dan Beard was already well known in the United States by the time he founded the Sons of Daniel Boone in 1905. For more information on the Sons of Daniel Boone, please click here.

Portrait of Dan Beard (1924)