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An early leaflet (1910-1911?) - anyone has seen the same one?


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#1 fleep

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Posted 05 March 2016 - 09:00 AM

I am unable to date this old leaflet... I suppose that is from the very early years, because on the back side is specified the date (February, 10th) which makes me think that later only the year (1910.) has been important is such a kind of ephemera. But, that is just my thought. Any idea about the year from which is this ephemera?

 

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#2 Stosh

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Posted 05 March 2016 - 12:40 PM

First of all, welcome to the forum. 

 

This is an interesting piece, but might not be as significant as one might wish it to be. 

 

Although it refers to 10-FEB-14, one also must note that it makes reference to the Boy Scouts of the World numbering over 2 million boys.  That gives one the clue that it might be only as old as the mid-1930's.  According to THE HISTORY OF THE BOY SCOUTS OF AMERICA, by William D. Murray, copyright 1937, the active world membership in 1935 was 2,472,014. (p. 531)  This would mean that the membership would need to be at least 2 million when these pamphlets were first being handed out. 

 

Therefore my guess would date this piece mid to late 1930's  With the Great Depression taking it's toll on the program, they might even have been still floating around into the WW II era.

 

It is interesting to note the boys needed to be proficient in semaphore, Morse and MEYERS.  Most scouts don't  even know what a Meyers flag looks like.  :)  Thumbs up to the mess kit cooking reference too.  Try that nowadays with your plastic mess kits.

 

Nice historical piece!


Edited by Stosh, 05 March 2016 - 12:44 PM.

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#3 fleep

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Posted 05 March 2016 - 01:19 PM

Hi! Thank you for the welcome and for the detailed observation.

 

Yes, I have also noted the high number of the world members ("enrollment over 2 million boys" and "active world membership" are not exactly the same terms)... also, it is refered to the "Boys Scouts of the World" organization (?)... nowhere is mentioned the official name or abb. of the World organization founded in 1922. ... which should be mentioned if the card is printed after that year (especially so late in 1930-ies.

 

The leaflet (in fact it is a card, about 1mm thick) is printed by "Powers Eng. Co" from New York... it is also pretty large (a 1/4 dollar is on the 2nd scan for compare).

 

What is also interesting... the back side is printed "upside-down" to the front.. I am not sure is that some kind of error or was a usual practice for that days.


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#4 Krampus

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Posted 05 March 2016 - 03:53 PM

@fleep, there is a guy on the Internet named Clarke Green. He does a podcast for Scouters and those interested in Scouting. He did a podcast a while back with an author named David C. Scott who did ten years of research for a book he wrote about the early days of Scouting. If you want to track down the date of this document you might try there.

 

You could also try the National Scout Museum. They have an archive there where someone might be willing to help track down the publication date for you.

 

If those sources don't know, I am at a loss for who might know. ;)


Edited by Krampus, 05 March 2016 - 03:53 PM.

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#5 RememberSchiff

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Posted 05 March 2016 - 04:03 PM

That is an interesting treasure.

 

Going by the stated second class requirements, my guess is the leaflet was printed  between 1911 and 1915 when the Myer (not Meyer as spelled) code was a Second Class requirement. The Myer code requirement was dropped/restated in the 1915 revision of Second Class requirements in favor of the International Morse Code.

http://www.troop97.n...n/bsa_ranks.pdf

 

"Boy run"  troops also meant "boy started" back then! Scoutmasters "commissioned" by Headquarters.

 

I like it. Simple but challenging.


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#6 Stosh

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Posted 05 March 2016 - 05:28 PM

Hi! Thank you for the welcome and for the detailed observation.

 

Yes, I have also noted the high number of the world members ("enrollment over 2 million boys" and "active world membership" are not exactly the same terms)... also, it is refered to the "Boys Scouts of the World" organization (?)... nowhere is mentioned the official name or abb. of the World organization founded in 1922. ... which should be mentioned if the card is printed after that year (especially so late in 1930-ies.

 

The leaflet (in fact it is a card, about 1mm thick) is printed by "Powers Eng. Co" from New York... it is also pretty large (a 1/4 dollar is on the 2nd scan for compare).

 

What is also interesting... the back side is printed "upside-down" to the front.. I am not sure is that some kind of error or was a usual practice for that days.

 

I find it difficult that an organization of over 2 million boys that would not have a recognizable name.  The founding of the WOSM did not necessarily mean organized scout movements throughout the world would join it right away and be counted in the WOSM's membership either.  So knowing in 1922 the WOSM has lets just say, 1M scouts and there might be yet another 1M out there that aren't joined in but are part of BP's scouting principles,, what would you call the WHOLE of scouting in the world at that point? See the problem?  There are still countries today that have scouting movements that have yet to join the WOSM.

 

That would place it pre-1922 in that case, but then Who is the "chief" designated as recipient of the message? 

 

And to throw a wrench into everyone's thinking - the uniform shown in the picture is pre-1917.  I know the world wide numbers in 1935 as 2.4M members, but what was it in 1917?  from 1900 (Britian) to 1935 steady growth to 2.4M means the numbers only were 1.2m  at the halfway point 1917.  I didn't hear of any major numbers tapering off in the Great Depression to skew the trend.  Maybe others have more information on that.


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#7 fleep

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Posted 05 March 2016 - 05:50 PM

@ Krampus -  thank you for the tips. I am not sure is it smart to contact an bestselling author (as Mr. Scott is) about this single one, probably unsignificant, paper? I will need to think about it :) But, thank you for the advice!

 

@ RememberSchiff - thank you for the details which I didn't find out. On the printing is visible publisher: "POWERS ENG CO"... which is also known as "Powers engraving company" from New York. I have tried to Google out "Boy scouts" and "A message to the chief" together... and I didn't find any other sample of this card mentioned anywhere. Also, they way that it is printed (front to back in upside down position) possible suggests that this could be just a trial printing or something... in that position printed as an error? I found interesting how emblems are printed over the photgrapy, and the photography is still visible under the bottom of the right emblem. All looks very crude for the later printings (1920-ies, 1930-ies), especially when it was made by a respectable company which Powers was.

 

@ Stosh - it looks that a lot of info on this leaflet is not reliable... possibly written and prepared in the very early years when the real numbers and data have not been available. So, possibly was a gossip that already are "over two million boys" in the world are scouts, and, who has prepared this leaflet, didn't have a source to check it. That will also explain other mistakes in spelling (Meyer - Myer, which RememberShiff notice). In the very early days, the reliable sources (as almanacs or so) didn't exists, and that will explain why the numbers are not correct.

 

 

When we are talking about mistakes errors... please, excuse me for my insufficient English... I am from Central Europe :)

 
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#8 Stosh

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Posted 05 March 2016 - 06:13 PM

The picture seems to be a crude photoshp image of multiple layers of printing.  So the engravers could be doing some fancy techniques for the era or printing on old stock of some sort.  The two tones of coloring indicate it is not a photograph with printing superimposed over it.

 

The style of the hat on the boy on the left is also unique.  The crease of the hat should be centered over the ear if it was American and the "dip" if it were European.  It doesn't appear to be either.  The other scout's hat is a bit obscured with the logo, but if the shadows are correct it would seem to be a European style hat.

 

I don't see this as an official BSA publication in that the logo is incomplete (no Good Turn knot).  I don't know if that was omitted at one point and added later or not.  But with all the questionable historicity to it, I'm thinking it was made by a local organization at one point to publicize BSA and give instructions on how units can be formed in the different areas of the country. 

 

Don't worry about your English, from where I'm sitting, it's spot on perfect.


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#9 qwazse

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Posted 05 March 2016 - 06:38 PM

@fleep, I'm friends with some scouts from Central Europe. They stay at my house on a school breaks. Your English compares well to theirs.

 

"A Message to the Chief" is merely a text depiction of the activity: a scout relaying a message to his leader.

 

But, it could also be an excerpt of text from a national report: the equivalent of what chosen scouts now present to our President as "The Report To The Nation" (http://blog.scouting...-to-the-nation/).

 

One reason for the inverted printing may be this was a cover to a flip book (bound at the top). The text seems incomplete. It looks like the bottom margin was trimmed. So it leads me to think there may have been more pages. I know of no such book, but maybe someone else could comment to that possibility. Could this be a notebook about signalling?


Edited by qwazse, 05 March 2016 - 06:40 PM.

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#10 fleep

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Posted 05 March 2016 - 07:11 PM

@ quazse - It could be a front cover of the flip book, but I will place my bet on a blank flip note-book... not on the any entirely, or partial printed manual-type "notebook".

 

Possibly a flip note-book with a blank papers, which should have been torn-out at some time and used for a message to the "chief" to be written on them??

 

It is pretty large... 20 x 13 cm (8 x 5 inches).

 

I am not sure that both emblems and the official name of the BSA should have been used without their permission?

 

If it has been made by some local organization, I suppose that info will be placed somewhere on the front cover, too.

 

 

Thank you for the nice words about my English, folks! :)


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#11 SSScout

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Posted 05 March 2016 - 07:46 PM

I agree with the observations about the vintage being pre 1920, at least.  Some Scouts would have used any hat they could get, not just the flat, wide brim campaign hat. Look at the leather strap "puttees" on those legs.

I like the idea,, as has been suggested,  this is the cover of a "notebook" to write "messages to the chief".

Another idea:   one of a set of trading cards, from Cereal, or bubble gum or even tobacco cards. Each card of the set  (ten?  20?)  might have a picture of a Scout activity on it.   I myself have a collection of cards that came in Shredded Wheat boxes of an Straight Arrow  Indian Guide Skills set. This might be a remnant of something similar.


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#12 CalicoPenn

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Posted 05 March 2016 - 08:29 PM

There is a name written in pencil above the photo which would indicate to me that this is indeed the cover to some sort of booklet or notebook.  The name starts with an E, perhaps Eric, and the last name looks like it is Trout.  I believe he would have been the owner of this booklet/notepad.

 

Powers Engraving is likely to be also known as Powers Photo Engraving of New York - the Power's brothers held a number of patents for the photo-engraving process.

 

I believe the title of the artwork is Message to the Chief, and though it could be interpreted as the Scout delivering a message to his Scoutmaster, based on the pointing by the Scoutmaster (yes, making an assumption on the relationship here), I suspect that it is a message the Scoutmaster is giving the Scout to relay to someone else - some unseen Chief.

 

What's interesting is the requirements - those are the 1910 temporary requirements.  In 1911, the cooking requirement was changed from cook the ingredients with the regulation kit to cook the ingredients without using regular kitchen equipment.  The First Class reqiurement to train a Tenderfoot in 1910 was changed in 1911 to train a Tenderfoot that the Scout has recruited.

 

It's unlikely that this was printed in 1910 - I don't believe there would have been time to start fully outfitting boys, and by late 1910, the BSA was being operated by the YMCA for a time until it was big enough and strong enough to go out on it's own.

 

I think folks are on the right track that this is the cover to some kind of blank page notebook.  I suspect that, despite the use of present tense, it was not printed with current requirements but with historical requirements.  Based on the membership numbers presented, which I interpret as the number of members in the "Brigade" of Boy Scouts of America and not of the entire world, I'm guessing this as printed sometime between 1946, when membership first reached the 2 Million plus mark and  1952 when membership reached the 3 Million plus mark.  Also, the background color being used - that light greenish-blue - is consistent with color printing from the late 40's and 50's and not from the 1910s-1930's. (Ok, your saying to yourself, Calico is really going out on a limb here but one way that folks can tell how old certain things are like quilts, and posters, and postcards (and other printed materials) is by the colors being used - every decade or so can be said to have a color palette - remember the 1970's with Avocado Green, that hideous Orange, and that equally hideous Yellow?  Color Palette.  Take a look at car colors - you can tell the difference between a 1950's car color and a 1960's car color.  The same holds true for printing.  There is even a whole color palette associated with Frank Lloyd Wright that can be used to identify his peak period.  Now I could be wrong, but I've seen that shade on other things from the late 40's and early 50's but not on things from earlier). 

 

ps - it's just occured to me - you know what else comes in size 8 x 5 (technically 5 x 8)?  Junior size Notepads.


Edited by CalicoPenn, 05 March 2016 - 09:03 PM.

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#13 Stosh

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Posted 05 March 2016 - 11:56 PM

:)  If one ever does find out for sure anything on this poster, be sure to let us all know.  I have my bet placed on the early to mid-1930's based on the World membership comment of 2+ million boys in scouting world wide.

 

If I win send my winnings to a scout troop in central Europe that made his a fun thread for a change... :)


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#14 Miki101

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Posted 06 March 2016 - 12:47 AM

It's 1914. That was the year that BSA botched up the Scout emblem on the new Lyendecker artwork Handbook and printed it the same way on everything else.

 

David C. Scott


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#15 fleep

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Posted 06 March 2016 - 08:40 AM

Thank you very much (once again) for the help, Mr. Scott!!

 

 

 

So, folks... it looks that the mystery has been revealed :)


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#16 Stosh

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Posted 06 March 2016 - 01:08 PM

I still think it was strange that world wide scouting got to 2 million scouts within 15 years of origin.  They must have had some "special" way of counting in foreign countries.  :)


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#17 Krampus

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Posted 06 March 2016 - 03:59 PM

Thank you very much (once again) for the help, Mr. Scott!!
 
So, folks... it looks that the mystery has been revealed :)


I wonder if that's really David C. Scott, but assuming it is I told you he'd know. His book is pretty good and I'm sure his lengthy research came across this item. ;) You should read the quote book (see podcast). It's a fun read.
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#18 fleep

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Posted 06 March 2016 - 04:18 PM

Yes, that is Mr. David C. Scott. I have contacted him on his e-mail address (found  on his official web site), and he was so kind to reply me on my e-mail and to write his messege here, too. He wrote a couple of interesting books, and I will look forward to read them.

 

@Stosh - I don't know what to say... a lot of unusal facts and contradictions are connected to this paper. For example... if it is has been published in 1930-ies, or in 1940/50-ies, as CalicoPenn says, why someone will use info and standards (and a photo) which have been actual for a very limited time a decades before that?

 

That is like that I am now publishing an actual manual for the US army, and I use info from 1970-ies?? And also a photo from the Vietnam War?? In old uniforms?

 

If this paper (or cover) was printed in 1930-ies or later, a lot of almanacs and other sources have been available for the correct information... on the other side, I suppose that in that time some specifications and requirements, which have been actual for a very short time, have not been so easy available anymore?

 

Also, why to use an unusual emblem, which have been used only a several months 20-30 years before that? In the 1930-ies the actual emblem has been much easier available everywhery than a historic one (used only for a limited time in 1915.) :-/


Edited by fleep, 06 March 2016 - 04:25 PM.

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#19 TAHAWK

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Posted 06 March 2016 - 04:42 PM


... in this country a great organization which, for at least a decade. had been gathering force in small groups under various names. Incorporated, all these groups became an allied army under the name of Boy Scouts of America, a brigade of the greater army of the Boy Scouts of the World, whose enrollment is now over two million boys. Every one has heard of the Boy Scouts.

 

Comparatively few know what the name stands for.  New Yorkers, who last Memorial Day beheld three thousand boys from eight to fourteen years of age, armed with rifles. marching in the parade with members of the National Guard, may be forgiven for confusing the Boy Scouts with a militant organization of boys under the patronage of private capital.

 

If those New Yorkers were, as they should be, advocates of peace, they probably denounced the Boy Scout movement as , a  reactionary manifestation.  In point of fact. It is nothing of the kind. The Boy Scout movement has within a few years levied in our midst an army, It is true, an army which already numbers over half a million. This army extends from the Atlantic to the Pacific and hundreds flock daily to Its standard. Its slogan Is, "Be Prepared." Be prepared for what? For War? Nothing of the sort. Be prepared for service to mankind!   And Is this army made up of embryo soldiers? Not at all. It Is made up of Just boys. - Boys twelve to eighteen years old.  Rich boys, poor boys; boys black, white and yellow; Protestant boys and Roman Catholic boys and Hebrew boys; nice boys and bad boys; boys born in this "Land of the free, and home of the brave," and boys born In other and quite different lands. In fact, any and every old kind of a boy may, If he can pass the test and will take the oath, become a member of this great army, the Boy Scouts of America.

 

...

In  order to pass these tests the candidate must have an elementary  knowledge  of first aid to the injured, a like knowledge of semaphore, Myer or Morse alphabet, track half a mile in twenty, five minutes,  cover a mile in twelve minutes at "scouts' pace," lay and light a fire with not more than two matches, cook ' a quarter of a pound of meat and two potatoes  earn at least  one dollar and deposit it in a savings bank, and know the sixteen principal points of the compass.

 

 

‚ÄčHarrisburg Telegraph, September 12, 1911  "BOY SCOUTS OF AMERICA, A MIGHTY ARMY FOR GOOD, NOT FOR WAR BUT TO MAKE THE BOY A BETTER MAN"


Edited by TAHAWK, 06 March 2016 - 04:46 PM.

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#20 fleep

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Posted 06 March 2016 - 05:28 PM

Thank you, TAHAWK! You have done a great job with finding this article :)


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