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I think it was about 1970, plus or minus a couple of years.
I'm pretty sure that when I joined Cub Scouts in 1969, it was two red strips that said "Minneapolis Minn." When I joined Boy Scouts in 1972, it was a Council patch.
Or maybe it was my brother's Cub Scout uniform. He was six years older than me. But I remember we had some uniform(s) in the house with the red strips. In any event, the council patches were relatively new at that time.
According to this web site: http://www.gilwell.com/firstCSP/
CSPs came into being on April 17,1970 with a memo from Alfred P. Reber, director of BSA's National Supply division, to all Scout Executives. The memo established council shoulder insignia as "official" identification on all Scouting uniforms. Attached was a sheet of cardstock with three national samples stapled to it, illustrating the 3 new shapes (in addition to the existing red and white Council Strip which was also authorized as the fourth shape). The memo included a form for notifying National Supply of the stock on hand of community strips, a template for the three additional shapes, and a price list."
I'm not sure if all councils adopted a CSP, since apparently the red and white strips were still authorized, so different councils may have switched at various times.
Every thing posted so far fits my memory banks pretty well. When I joined Boy Scouts in 1971 we had the red and white strips. I saw my first CSP around 1974 after our council and another merged. Back in those days, changes came about a bit more slowly. If a policy change occurred at national it could sometimes take several years to play out all over the country.
I don't remember any scout stores back in the 70's. Uniforms and insignia were stocked in a corner of a general store or department store. New items CSP (ugh) were stocked as the old red and white community strips (city, town, state) were sold out. Stocking one CSP patch took far less space than the dozen(s) and dozen(s) of ever-growing number of community patches; streamlined manufacturing too. Too bad, CSP all pretty much look alike from across the room and who knows where (Pick-a-name) Council is.
Transition was easier, wearing either was okay as that memo infoscouter mentioned. The Uniform Method was not added until 1980 or 81, by that time I think the transition was completed.
If you are referring to the full color patch, then the dates noted are pretty close; but the predecessor r/w council patch (as opposed to individual city and state)started much earlier, circa 1960. We had one for our jamboree troop from the old Arrowhead Area Council in San Bernardino.
That must have varied by Council as well. My 1969 Cub Scout uniform definitely had two separate pieces of fabric. The one on top said "Minneapolis" and the one below it said "Minn". I seem to recall that even small suburbs had their own city strip.
I always wondered, and never figured out for sure, whether the city name was where the scout resided, where the unit was chartered, or where it met. In most cases, those were the same city, but I never figured out what happened when a scout crossed a city boundary to go from his home to his scout meeting.
Right now, my son lives in one community, the pack is chartered by a church in another community, most of our meetings are held in a third community, and the vast majority of the other members live in a fourth community. So the Council patch does avoid a lot of confusion.
I've seen red and white council patches (as opposed to city/state strips) on e-Bay, but they definitely weren't used in our council. The name of the council didn't appear on our shirts until the multi-color patches showed up.
Just a note to clear up the community strip versus R/W council patches. The community strips were used at the same time as the R/W council patches but they existed for seperate purposes. The community strip was worn by local unit members and the R/W council patches were worn by professional Scouters and Jamboree contingent members. I do believe the dates of change varied slightly and I know that here in area it was in 1973. The funny part is I know this because of when our council was formed. By coincidence it was already mentioned, I am in the area that was the old Arrowhead Area council (I collect related items!) and our council never had a CSP. The council merged in 73 and new California Inland Empire Council (CIEC for short) R/W council patches were issued but after just a few months CSP's came out. That actually makes California Inland Empire Council R/W's fairly rare and I think the only reason that there are so many of them is that it was a Jambo year. Basically if your council ceased to exist before the early 70's there are only R/W council patches and if they came into existence after that time there are only CSP's. Only councils that existed during that time had both. On a side note, on the web there is often confusion between Inland Empire Council and California Inland Empire Council stuff. I can't tell you how many items I have had to send back after I was told that, yes, it is California only to get it and its from Washington! LOL(This message has been edited by Hawkrod)