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LeCastor

The Joy of a Used Uniform Item

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When I was a boy and began my Scouting journey as a Bear, my grandfather, who was a Lone Scout in rural Nebraska in the 1930s, began to give me small pieces of Scouting memorabilia.  Some include an original 1929 copy of Green Bar Bill's Handbook for Patrol Leaders, several Scouting jackknives, backpacks, and a mess kit utensil set I still use on camping trips.  Of course, the really important stuff my grandfather gave me was the woodcraft, campcraft, and general life knowledge he shared with me over our relatively short time together on this Earth.

Since I became an adult Scouter, I have taken joy in finding used uniform items on eBay or the thrift shops because, to me, they tell a story, or stories depending on the age of the item.  Who wore this or that?  Where did they do their Scouting?  As I write this post I'm wearing a vintage red wool jac-shirt that belonged to some unknown Scouter before me.  To me it's fun to wonder what adventures this jac-shirt was a part of.  Now, in a way, I'm carrying on the adventure of this uniform item with my own Scouting experiences. 

Do any of you have historical, or not quite so historical, uniform items that you wear?  Do you know the stories behind these items?  

Edited by LeCastor

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I wear a vintage BA22 patch that I got off ebay. Long story short, I was the last BA22 class my council did, and while they had enough BA22 strips for the uniform, the patch showing completion was discontinued. So the council issued Canadian B-P portrait patches instead.  I don't know who earned it, but I know the challenges they wen through to get it.

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Posted (edited)

It may not be me wearing them, but my boys are wearing my Cub scout neckers and my webelos colors from when i was a kid.

Edited by Cubmaster Pete
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I enjoy the vintage versions of things as well. I picked up a 1970's version of the SM leaders patch. Hopefully, a previous SM left some luck in it. While not something to wear, I picked up the 1938 version of the Handbook for Scoutmasters. I've been looking for the red wool jacket lately. Sadly, no stories behind them, just cool old things. 

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Tahawk, the top one is an Assistant Scoutmaster patch, right? (Since it has gold rather than silver.)

What is the bottom one?

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I carry the Scout camp knife I had as a Scout.  The only time I don't have it with me is when I am at airports since 9/11.

My service stars from my scout days are still on my uniform today.

The State strip from my scout historic uniform is the same one I had as a kid, I have changed out the community strip however.

The pup tent I used as a scout is now used as a ground cloth to protect the floor of my tent or serve as a floor to my current military pup tent.

My scout handbook is still on the shelf on my den.

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On 1/1/2018 at 10:32 PM, NJCubScouter said:

Tahawk, the top one is an Assistant Scoutmaster patch, right? (Since it has gold rather than silver.)

What is the bottom one?

 

On 1/2/2018 at 5:53 AM, RememberSchiff said:

Is the bottom one an upside down Eagle Scout (red-white-blue) ribbon?

It's French.

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Not a uniform item...

We moved in the late 70's and in the rafters of the basement of our new house were two things.

A 4-ft tall wooden obelisk with hand-carved and painted merit badge emblems and names of the patrol members that made it in the 1930's. It had about 30 years of dust on it. It happened that one of those names was the current SM of the troop I was joining. I brought it to my first meeting and it stayed in a place of honor in the Scout room thereafter. His shock at seeing it again was priceless. I can only imagine the effort it took to make it. Truly wonderful.

The other item was of the same vintage. A solid metal Vaughn BSA Saf-T-Head hatchet. Still have it, still use it.

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Very cool!       I expect there are still neat things out there to discover.

 

I went to a tiny Army Navy store in a small town.  They had a barrel of "intrenching tools."  One was a short-lived BSA experiment with such a tool - shovel and pick like a real "E Tool" but built way too flimsy for boys.  Even the steel parts were thin!  Might have lasted a couple of days in a sand box, but clay !

Denominated the "Pick & Shovel," BSA # 1374.  By Vaughn and Bushnell, which also made official BSA axes and survives today as "Vaughn Manufacturing."  And here was one almost entirely  totally intact for $5.95.

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I picked up an official BSA. sheath knife at a yard sale for 50 cents back in ' 72. i carried it on every campout and hike for the next 38 years. When my youngest son turned 18, I gave to him.  I like to think it will serve him as well as it did me long after I am gone.

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Here I am in my youth uniform, which I wore to my scoutmaster's 95th birthday party a few years ago (I'm on the left--he's the handsome guy who is seated).

Before I get any compliments about being able to fit into my youth uniform, it is a pretty tight fit, I actually got it before my Eagle Court of Honor at age 17-1/2, and I was a bit overweight at the time.

I wear this uniform occasionally to show off my bona fides as an old timer.  It has my 1973 Jamboree patch.  In this picture, I'm also wearing the neckerchief from our council contingent at that jamboree, a vintage neckerchief slide from our council summer camp made of genuine plastic, and a temporary patch from one of our council camps with the council's pre-merger name.  I think everything else was current for my position at the time.

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Clem, now you're just showing off ;)  (my wife's maternal line is Clem, out of Louisville, KY)

The ribbon bar above is the Explorer Silver Award.

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