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A Baden-Powell Bibliography

There are a number lists to be found of Baden-Powell's publications, so you might well think there is little need for another. Maybe so, but I have read all of the books (a rare distinction!) and so have been able to add my comments as to the content of each title, as well as an image of the cover. Readers who perhaps (like me prior to my retirement) have never seen some of the publications will be able to gain some idea of their size and contents, as well as the usual bibliographical details. Appropriate links have also been made to the relevant articles in Scouting Milestones

Afew of the publications - mainly the pamphlets - do not as yet have images or commentary. I hope to remedy this in time.

If you have a good copy of any of the missing texts, I would be pleased to illustrate its cover here with an appropriate acknowledgement and, if you wish, your description of its contents.

Similar details on publications by other authors, which have been used during the research into these Scouting Milestones, can be found in the Bibliography.

1883 On Vedette: An Easy Aide-Mémoire Major R S S Baden-Powell, 13th Hussars. Gale & Polden

On Vedette

BADEN-POWELL did not instruct this publication to be listed as a 'previous work' in his later publications, so perhaps he thought of it as a pamphlet. However, because it has a hard cover I have included it here. A later version with a soft cover is included in the Pamphlets Section.

1884 Reconnaissance and Scouting Captain R S S Baden-Powell. William Clowes, 52pp inc. fold-out map. 4" x 6"

Reconnaissance and Scouting

THIS very rare book is completely eclipsed in Scout Folklore by Aids to Scouting. This is understandable as it was published whilst B-P was besieged in Mafeking, was avidly read by young people and educationalists and spontaneously started Scouting. On the other hand Reconnaissance and Scouting, published 16 years earlier, clearly demonstrated that B-P had developed a philosophy - if not a lifestyle - around the skills of army scouting in the field. From this point on Baden-Powell's name was to be indelibly linked to the activities he described as scouting and elevated that art/science to a far greater prominence than in army circles.

"Scouts are the eyes and the ears of any army and on their intelligence and smartness mainly depends the success of all operations"
"No solder on service has such a good chance of distinguishing himself as a scout."

The book is set out in 'Lessons' in much the same way that Scouting for Boys was presented as a series of yarns. Of particular interest to those interested in Scouting are the lessons on Scouting Generally, Riding Squadron Scouts and Scouting mounted outdoors.

"Nothing should ever escape the eye of a scout; he should have eyes in the back of his head; he should take pleasure in noticing little trifles in distant objects that have not struck the attention of his comrades."

There is no doubt about it; this book can rightly be described as a Scouting Milestone.

1885 Cavalry Instruction Captain R S S Baden-Powell, late 13th Hussars. Harrison & Sons, illustrated, 40pp. 4½" x 5½"

Cavalry Instruction
The illustration is of the 3rd edition

AS the preface states this is, "A manual for the use of officers conducting a course in Military Instruction in accordance with General Order No 30 of 1884", and as such it must have had a very limited readership.

The manual is arranged as a four-week course, finishing with an 'examination' that presumably replicated the actual one that the officer candidates wanted to pass.

Given that the publication date of the book was 20 years before Scouting for Boys the topics encountered in the last two weeks of the course on 'Patrolling and Scouting' and 'Camping', were prophetic indicators of things to come.

There are no illustrations, B-P's usual cartoon line drawings being inappropriate to the technical nature of the manual, but thankfully the text is enlivened by an anecdotal style that was to become the hallmark of all B-P's writing.

1889 Pigsticking or Hoghunting Captain R S S Baden-Powell. Harrison & Sons, 211pp


BADEN-POWELL dedicated this book to His Royal Highness, the Duke of Connaught. "The first prince of the Royal Blood who has taken a 'first spear'", in other words, was the first to 'stick' a particular wild pig.

There is an introduction on the The Nature of Pigsticking and it is then divided into four parts:- Pig; What you have to contend with; Animal allies and How to succeed as a Pig-sticker. The book has 25 wonderful illustrations, each by protected by tissue paper.

Baden-Powell was well-placed to write this manual, as he was a well-known exponent of the sport and the winner of its highest honour, the Kadir Cup, (though it has to be said only by virtue of the fact that he was the owner of the winning mount, and not its rider.)

Pigsticking would today be regarded as a cruel blood-sport and B-P's critics have concluded that he was cruel to animals and hypocritical when he formulated the sixth Scout Law, "A Scout is a Friend to Animals". This, however, is ignore the 'tunnel vision' of the Victorians, who saw no conflict between blood sports and moralizing over how animals should be treated - societies for providing water troughs for carriage animals, for example, flourished in Victorian Britain. Pigsticking was as deeply embedded in the culture of the Indian army as its close relation, foxhunting, was in the life of the British upper classes. Times change however, and by the time of his death in 1941 and in other books reviewed here, B-P was to renounce the unnecessary hunting of animals and advocate conservation measures.

Long-time Milestone's reader Steve Bobrowitz informs me that a Canadian University has a version which uses just one of the chapters, Ch. 4 from Sport in Warand is given the same title i.e.The Sport of Rajahs.It was published by G.A. Morang and Company, Toronto in 1900. Chapter 4 in the original runs to 44 pages but each page has very wide margins and a pretty green border. There is then room for no more than 20 lines at an average of 7 words per line - making a total of no more than 6600 words which makes a hardly adequate chapter, let alone a stand-alone book! This single chapter book has escaped all the bibliographies I have seen and so obviously is quite rare and probably sold very few copies.

1896 The Downfall of Prempeh Lieut. Col. RSS Baden-Powell. Methuen & Co., 199pp


THE British Government decided that King Prempeh had broken treaties and was still practising human sacrifice. The Ashanti Expedition was sent to East Africa in December 1895 to re-open a roadway to Prempeh's 'palace' at Kumassi and bring the offending King to account. B-P was in charge of the native force or Levy of road makers, and he details his adventures in diary form. He is careful to compile 'evidence' of Prempeh's human sacrifices and writes as though he has actually seen one. The gold embossed graphic on the cover records the time when B-P had to overcome one of Prempeh's court officials, who had escaped to summon help through a cordon placed around the Royal 'Palace'. There is an additional chapter by B-P's brother, George Baden-Powell, on 'Policy and Wealth in Ashanti'.

(B-P, in his much later book Rovering to Success records how King Prempeh became the President of the local association of Boy Scouts, and one his sons a Scoutmaster!)

1897 The Matabele Campaign Colonel RSS Baden-Powell 13th Hussars, FRGS. Methuen & Co., 144pp


BADEN-POWELL had much to thank his mother for, not least the fact that she encouraged him to keep specially illustrated diaries for her on his trips abroad. This book is based one such diary and covers the 'campaign in suppressing the Native Rising in the Matebeland and the Mashonaland'. B-P, amongst the daily diary-like entries, extols the principals of military scouting. It was on this expedition that B-P found the Koodoo horn that was to sound at Brownsea and Gilwell Park.

1899 Aids to Scouting for N.C.O.s and Men Bt.-Colonel R S S Baden-Powell. FRGS, 5th Dragoon Guards. Gale & Polden, 138pp

Aids to Scouting

THERE is a full account of Aids to Scouting and its historic impact elsewhere on this Site. It is significantly smaller than all the other books except perhaps 'On Vedette' and was designed to be carried in uniform pockets. It measures just over 3½" x 4½" (9 x 11.6cm) and has a soft fabric cover.

1900 Sport in War Major-General R S S Baden-Powell. Heinemann, 202pp

Sport in War

THE publishing date gives the game away. B-P was otherwise occupied at the time in Mafeking, and unlike 'Aids to Scouting'; the proofs of this book were not run through the Siege! The book was compiled by Alfred Watkin, editor of the Badminton Magazine from articles from previously published from 1895 onwards. It was designed to exploit the enormous popular interest in B-P immediately following the Relief of Mafeking. Each page has a wide green border that looks very attractive, but in fact reduces the number of words per page to around 120! There are however sporting anecdotes not available from any other source and 21 wonderful illustrations, mainly taken from B-P's own water-colours.

1907 Sketches in Mafeking and East Africa Major General R S S Baden-Powell. Smith, Elder and Co., 183pp

Sketches in Mafeking

IF I had to choose which was my favourite B-P book it would be this one. It is certainly the most lavishly produced with gilt-edged pages and quality paper that enhances the many B-P photographs, water-colours, pen and ink and pencil illustrations. They show a power of observation that is present in all B-P's work but nowhere more than here. My favourite, of course, is the line drawing of the Mafeking Cadets, which, I think, includes B-P himself.

The book combines B-P's travels in 1906 with reminiscences of what it was like in Africa in his former army service days, and especially Mafeking. The publishing date was around the time of the Brownsea Experimental Camp and so, as we might have expected from Baden-Powell, the conclusion is a powerful summary of the need to provide boys with a scheme of training. Whilst B-P does not go on to say that he is going to provide it, clearly he had already formulated his plan for doing so.

1908 Scouting for Boys (in six parts) Lieut. Gen. Baden-Powell CB. C Arthur Pearson Ltd.

Scouting for Boys (parts)

FIRST of the fortnightly parts. A full assessment of the part-series is discussed on the Scouting for Boys Page of this Website.

Please note that from 1957 replica versions of 'The Parts' have been published. All of the replica parts are the same size 1.e. 18.2cms tall. The original 'Part I' is smaller than the rest of the 1908 set but the same size as the replica i.e. height=18.2cms. The original parts 2-6 are 19.6cms tall- over a centimetre taller than the replicas. Buyer Beware, especially cotemplating a purchase of a 'Part I' by itself!

1908 Scouting for Boys Complete Edition Lieut. Gen. Baden-Powell CB. C Arthur Pearson Ltd., 288pp

Scouting for Boys

Afull assessment of the book is discussed on the Scouting for Boys article on this Website. In 1919, Pearsons published The Scouts First Book by Sir Robert Baden-Powell Bart., an abridged edition of this, the Official Handbook, for the use of Boy Scouts.

1909 Yarns for Boy Scouts Lt. Gen. Sir R S S Baden-Powell KCB. C Arthur Pearson Ltd., The Scout Library no.2, 212pp, 29 line drawings


BADEN-POWELL explains in his preface that the book is intended as a continuation of the work began in Scouting for Boys published the previous year. 'Yarns' are collected together under various chapter headings: Peace Scouting; Path Finding; Sherlock Holmes' work; Stalking wild animals; Endurance of Scouts; How to grow strong; Campaigning; Seamanship; The Knights of the Round Table; How a boy can rise; Gallantry; Scout Texts; Good Turns; To Scout Masters and To Scout Mistresses. Nearly all had previously appeared in the 1908 editions of The Scout, and some became constant themes throughout the course of Baden-Powell’s long writing career.

The chapter on 'Scout Texts' is not, as might be supposed, a review of available Scouting Literature, but is a collection of yarns based on well-known sayings, such as "Softly, softly, catchee monkey", instanced elsewhere in these Pages.

The preface is of particular interest as it was written before the existence of Girl Guides but acknowledges the existence of girls and women within the movement - "a few special remarks will be found at the end of the book ... addressed to Scoutmasters, that is to say, to ladies, who are inclined to take up scouting for girls." This chapter only just over a page long and, although B-P is often accused of being a male chauvinist, it would be hard for a Victorian General not to be a product of his times. However, he clearly shows he is on the sides of the angels, "Girls" wrote B-P "should be brought up as comrades and helpers, not to be dolls". He proposes that girls, and the nation, would benefit if they were able to take up the principles already established in Scouting albeit via a 'slightly modified' form of training. "I am forced to this suggestion by the fact that already some thousands of girls have registered themselves as 'Boy Scouts'!"

1910 Scouting Games Lieut.-Gen, Sir Robert Baden-Powell. C Arthur Pearson Ltd., 144pp


THIS is a list of Scouting Games; some devised by B-P, some new, some as old as the hills and some, with acknowledgement, borrowed from E T Seton. In the preface B-P points out that each of the games has a physical or moral aim and are very much a part of the Scouting method of inculcating 'manliness' and 'good- citizenship'. (The fact that they were also good fun is taken for granted!)

One of the 'games' is a play which was first published in the part-series of Scouting for Boys published in 1908 - 'Pocahontas: or the Capture of Captain John Smith' which had a special meaning for B-P as he believed that he was descended from Smith. (B-P was later to exhibit a wonderful bust of Smith that he had sculpted.) In neither this book nor Scouting for Boys does B-P make any claims about Smith being an ancestor, which was just as well as it seems very unlikely that this was the case.

1912 How Girls can Help to Build Up the Empire Miss Baden-Powell and Sir R Baden-Powell. Thomas Nelson, 472pp

Empire Girls

THIS was meant to be the female equivalent of Scouting for Boys, written in collaboration with Baden-Powell's sister Agnes, but also with the guidance of his mother. B-P was not impressed with the results and was later to refer to it as 'The Little Blue Muddly'. There was a US edition edited by Juliette Lowe.

1913 Boy Scouts Beyond the Seas Lt.Gen. Sir Robert Baden-Powell K.C.B. C Arthur Pearson Ltd., The Scout Library No 19. 250pp

Beyond the Seas

THE book describes a "recent tour of inspection, not only in our overseas dominions, but also in the United States, Japan, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Holland, and Belgium." When one takes into account that the 'overseas dominions' included The West Indies, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand, the journey is really best described as a World Tour.

Though chronological, the book regrettably lacks specific dates. (I am compiling an exhaustive day-by-day B-P Chronology, which will enable the places mentioned in the book to be cross-referenced against the date.) B-P expands on his experiences to illustrate worthwhile 'teaching points', drawing on his vast repertoire of historical and geographical knowledge, whilst maintaining an interesting narrative. As I have observed before, Baden-Powell was a natural teacher.

The visit to Panama was particularly interesting, as the building of the Panama Canal was in progress and its original proposer, Ferdinand de Lesseps, is likened to a "stout-hearted Scout". (Vicomte Ferdinand de Lesseps (1805-1894) conceived the Suez Canal, which was completed in 1869. He projected the original Panama Canal, which failed. The Panama Canal finally opened in 1914.)

Baden-Powell was often received by the Heads of State of countries he visited. On this occasion he met President Taft, one the many US presidents B-P was to meet, to review United States Boy Scouts at the White House on February 3rd, 1912.

There are 9 black and white plates, some photographs, and some of B-P's watercolours. In addition, there are numerous B-P line drawings and illustrations, some of which I believe to be unique to this book.

Unfortunately, but understandably, nobody seems to have had the time to add up just how many miles B-P covered, Scouts he met, or even the countries he visited. Most of these statistics are now beyond recall, but my tally of counties visited is 21.

1914 Indian Memories Lieut.-Gen. Sir Robert Baden-Powell. Herbert Jenkins, 363pp

Indian Memories

THE book is a compilation of the author's everyday experiences while stationed as an officer of Her Majesty in India, as recollected from his letters and diaries sent to his Mother, who fortunately kept everything, knowing that her son would one day become famous. No wonder B-P dedicated this book to her. B-P reminisces at length, his stories are sharply-drawn observations and never boring, sometimes humorous, sometimes designed to shock, always with a point. There is no doubt B-P would have made a fine teacher!

In the book, we are introduced to the B-P's lifelong friend, Captain 'the Boy' McLaren. A new doctor had arrived in India and B-P was to accompany him to his regiment. "But what", B-P asked him, "will you do with your son?" The doctor replied that the other person present - who looked like a lad of fourteen - was in fact McLaren, another officer also gazetted to the 13th Hussars. (Some of B-P's biographers, who should have of course have read this book, choose to ignore this account in their innuendo as to why McLaren was called The Boy!)

There are twenty water-colour illustrations and one hundred line drawings, reproductions of those he sent home to show what India was like and "...have the virtue of being done on the spot." B-P last served in India in 1884; the reminiscences were in print, thirty years later, in July 1914. Publication however was deferred owing to the outbreak of WW1. My own copy was given as a Christmas present (not to me!) in 1915 and is entitled Memories of India and is an American edition. Perhaps the slight change in the title was to differentiate between the sub-continent and the indigenous peoples of America.

1914 Quick Training for War Lieut.-Gen. Sir Robert Baden-Powell. KCB. Herbert Jenkins, 112pp

Quick Training

BADEN-POWELL uses his long military experience to distil soldering down to 'the four C-s'. Courage, Common sense, Cunning and Cheerfulness. These qualities, B-P wrote, were well-regarded in the German Forces and were what would win the war for us. In the British forces, he maintained, much value was placed on the need for individual mental intelligence, in contrast to the sheep-like qualities encountered in the enemy who had been drilled to march blindly into the guns. (I am not sure that the casualty figures on our side actually bear this out.)

The book is full of practical hints and became a standard, but privately bought, survival guide for many of our troops. 60,000 copies were sold within the first month of publication. Compare that to the fact that at the time of the Boer War the German Army issued B-P's Aids to Scouting (in German of course) to all their soldiers.

1915 Marksmanship for Boys Lt Gen Sir Robert Baden-Powell. C Arthur Pearson Ltd., 64pp


THIS small book was written within a year of the outbreak of the First World War. It contains details of how Boy Scouts could win the newly-introduced Scouts Defence Corps 'Red Feather'. (White feathers were a sign of cowardice and, during the WW1, were sent to some non-combatants. This was nothing to do with Scouting.)

One of the requirements for the Red Feather was the ability to drill with and shoot small arms. Instruction in these matters comprise the rest of the book. B-P was well-suited to give such instruction, not merely from his army experience, as he himself had been in a prize-winning school rifle club team.

The book would seem to provide the perfect ammunition (forgive the pun) to those who knew all along that Scouting was militaristic, but it should be remembered that it was produced at a time when it was by no means certain that Britain would win the Great War and that to be a member of the Scout's Defence Corps you had to be 16 years old. Many 16 year-olds on both sides were fighting on the front line, as instanced by the Scout V.C. Jack Cornwell.

1915 My Adventures as a Spy Lieut.Gen. Sir Robert Baden-Powell. C Arthur Pearson Ltd., 159pp


BADEN-POWELL yarns about his exploits as a spy and talks about 'the sport of spying'. The butterfly illustrated on the cover is referred to in the 'Englishmen as fools' chapter, where B-P writes how useful it is to the English spy that our stereotypical image abroad was seen as being eccentric and foolish. On one occasion B-P, pretending to be an English gentlemen butterfly collector, appeared to making field sketches of the delicate pattern of a butterfly wings (used as the cover graphic). This bumbling foreigner did not apparently alarm the local guards to 'sensitive' military installations. But B-P was actually recording a plan of an enemy fort with gun emplacements, camouflaging their shapes amongst the delicate details of the wings. Even more ingenious, I feel, was a field sketch of the fort concealed in a drawing of the head of a moth.

The book was republished as The Adventures of a Spy in 1936.

1916 The Wolf Cub's Handbook Robert Baden-Powell. C Arthur Pearson Ltd. 256pp

Wolf Cub

See the Milestone Scouting for Younger Boys - The Wolf Cubs

THE book is arranged in a series of fifteen 'bites' or chapters. The first half-dozen rely very heavily on Rudyard Kipling's The Jungle Book. The imagery from these stories provides the basis on for the rest. This was not just a handbook for pack-nights, but for life, though it has to be said that it was more for Akelas than for boys who, after all, might have been as young as eight. The qualifications required to pass the proficiency badges and progress through the training scheme are detailed and what cub did not want both eyes open and a Leaping Wolf, bright gold against his green jersey! As usual, the text is illustrated throughout with wonderful B-P line drawings.

1916 Young Knights of the Empire Sir Robert Baden-Powell. C Arthur Pearson Ltd., 210pp

Young Knights
Image courtesy of the Collection of Attilio Grieco, Italy

THE full title is Young Knights of the Empire, their code and further Scout Yarns. Chapters explore each of the ten Scout Laws, travelling abroad, Sea Scouting and 'How to become Backwoodsman', and there is a further chapter on Tracking.

On the cover of the book, written on the transoms of the cage are the slogans Honour God and the King, Obey the Law of the Scouts and Do a Good Turn to Somebody Every Day, whilst on the bars there appears two precepts hidden by the Knight himself (whose shield bears the motto Be Prepared) and then: Courtesy; Kindness; Obedience; Cheerfulness; Thrift; Purity and Honour.

There is a letter in the UK Scout Archive from B-P to Pearson's dated February 12th, 1916:
"I am very disappointed in Ford's Drawing for 'The Young Knights' cover. I am redrawing it myself."
I am not certain at this point whether the image you see on the book cover is Ford's or Baden-Powell's. And there is further confusion caused by the initials, presumably those of the artist's, of H (or N) J in the bottom right-hand corner of the cover...

1918 Girl Guiding. The Official Handbook Lord Baden-Powell of Gilwell. C Arthur Pearson Ltd., 180pp

Girl Guiding
The illustration is of the 1931 edition

A Handbook for Guidelets, Guides, Senior Guides, and Guiders.

THIS book replaced the earlier How Girls Can Help manual (reviewed above) written by Baden-Powell's sister, Agnes. B-P was later openly critical of it calling it "The Little Blue Muddly". Agnes was President of the Girl Guide Association and B-P's wife, Lady Olave Baden-Powell, had been just been appointed Chief Guide by the time this book was published - so one can imagine that the Chief had to tread warily.

Unlike Scouting for Boys, this book is a catch-all, with specific sections for every branch of the Guide Movement. That said, the mixture of anecdotes, woodcraft teaching, listings of proficiency badges and so on, are a parallel of those contained in Scouting for Boys, some being imported directly from it.

Baden-Powell was to later apologise for earlier editions of this book for "not sufficiently emphasising the importance of nature-lore and its essential place in our programme". "As a consequence", he wrote, "there may be a tendency, especially in towns and during the long winter months, to attach in its stead too great a value to signalling and drill, etc." Though B-P was critical of "drill for drill’s sake" in the Scout movement, his remarks underline his view that Guiding was not to be thought of as slightly watered-down version of Scouting, but a special training specifically designed to suit the different needs of Girls and Young Women in the early part of the 20th century. Some may feel this sounds very 'non P.C.' in the 21st Century, but B-P, as he often did, had a wider vision. It has been proved beyond doubt that boys and girls do indeed benefit from forms of single sex teaching and learn, not to mention succeed, in different ways.

In 1920 an abridged version of this book was published under the title Steps to Girl Guiding.

1919 Aids to Scoutmastership Sir Robert Baden Powell [sic] (Chief Scout). Herbert Jenkins. 125pp


Aslim volume, but of a length that B-P thought might prove too long for his audience! Scoutmastership, he insists, 'is a jolly game', not a 'difficult science'.

The book naturally is written for the adult Scouter and goes deeply into justifications and explanations of the 'philosophy' (my words not B-P's) of Scouting. It is illustrated by many line drawings. The success of the volume can be judged by the fact that it became the standard work in all Scouting Countries. Written the year after 'The Great War for Civilisation', the record death toll, particularly of former Scouts and serving Scoutmasters, played heavily on B-P's mind and the book concludes optimistically that if each 'plays the game' the end will result would be Peace and goodwill among men.

1920 Brownies or Bluebirds Lord Baden-Powell of Gilwell. C Arthur Pearson Ltd., 60pp

Brownies or Bluebirds

THIS slim volume is often described as a booklet, but it has a soft cover like the Cub Scout Handbook and, I think, needs to be on a par with it, so is included here in the Book section.

The first chapter is freely acknowledged by B-P as being an adaptation of Mrs Ewing’s Brownies. I am uncertain as yet as to whether the word 'Brownies' in the title came from the junior part of the Guide Movement, or whether the junior section was named after the book title. I suppose that B-P hoped that this story would do as much for Brownies as Kipling’s Jungle Book had done for Wolf Cubs. However, it has neither the length, the substance or the magic of Kipling’s creation. The other chapters are in the main what you would expect to find in a Brownie handbook, much enlivened with B-P's own line drawings.

1921 An Old Wolf's Favourites Sir Robert Baden-Powell. Bt. C Arthur Pearson Ltd., 126pp

Old Wolf

THE book was designed to be read by Wolf Cubs. The sub-title is Animals I Have Known, and B-P yarns about his favourite animals that he had encountered in his already extensive world travels. His horses, pet elephants, wild and pet birds are all described and sketched. There are yarns about other animals that B-P had hunted such as moose, boar, bear, jackal and panther.

1921 What Scouts Can Do - More Yarns Lord Baden-Powell of Gilwell. C Arthur Pearson Ltd., 173pp

More Yarns

THE book, illustrated by Baden-Powell, starts with an appraisal of what was wrong with the 'modern youth' (not Scouts!) of his day. This, as intended, forms a complete contrast to the activities related later on in the book. The Chief Scout describes adventures he had himself as a youth and what Scouts of the day were doing at the time the book was written.

I thought my own youth reasonably adventurous. I can instance, for example, how a friend and I cycled around the cathedral cities of Northern France in 1967. How tame this seems compared to B-P's bike ride in 19th Century in Bosnia, where he encountered people who had never seen a bicycle before!

The cover illustrated is the 4th Edition of 1936.

1922 Rovering to Success Sir Robert Baden-Powell. Herbert Jenkins, 253pp


CLEARLY written for the newest section of the Movement at that time, Rover Scouts. The title continues on the preface page as A Book of Life Sport for Young Men. The Young Men in question were between 17 and, I think, 25. The introduction on 'How to Be Happy - Rich Or Poor' portrays life as a canoe journey and later on the book deals with such 'rocks' as Horses, Wine, Women, Humbugs and Cuckoos and Irreligion. From the 21st century it is very easy to laugh its moralistic tone and outdated advice, but it is still a fascinating read. The last chapter deals with 'Rovering'. The book is illustrated by B-P with over 60 pen-and-ink drawings.

1927 Life's Snags and How to Meet Them Sir Robert Baden-Powell Bt. C Arthur Pearson Ltd., 127pp


THE book looks at the motives in life and examines one B-P's favourites, 'sticktoititus' - which I used to know as 'stickability' - or as it is called in more mundane terms - perseverance. There is also an interesting chapter, considering the date of publication, on Climbing as an Education. The book is illustrated, as usual, with B-P's line drawings.

1929 My Hat Sir Robert Baden-Powell. Basil Blackwell 13 pp out of 40pp

My Hat

THROUGHOUT his life, Baden-Powell periodically added to a series of short stories which he began whilst still at school under the general heading 'My Hats'. Each story was written through the eyes of a fictitious character, each from different trade or profession, so each wore a different 'hat'. Some of these stories were published in Greyfriar, the Charterhouse school magazine whilst he was still there, but he contributed others long after he had left the School. As he progressed through his life, The Founder had a wide range of experiences, and some these in reality required different hats. So stories were added as seen through the eyes of soldiers, spies and even a plumber. B-P had undertaken a stage role as a plumber and to prepare adequately for it had gone into the East End of London, dressed appropriately and pretending he was a plumber. He made friends with a real plumber and was been taken back to the tradesman's home to meet his wife. Later, whilst dressed in full regalia of a Major, he met the couple at Military Review and astounded them when he introduced himself. B-P's 'plumbing experience' led to another story in 'My Hats'.

I am not aware that any of these stories were published, other than in the Greyfriar, until 1929 - some 55 years after B-P left Charterhouse - when this story was published. The hat Baden-Powell wears on this occasion is one he often used and indeed it had become his trademark, his famous 'cowboy' hat. Not that the story is about cowboys, B-P took his old hat off its peg to go exploring the plains of Africa and encounter its wildlife. It is these experiences that he relates as himself in this publication. This was a very unusual venture for B-P, as the publishers decided to run his story alongside a more substantial work by another author, Nicholas Palmerston, entitled A Gentleman of Burgundy and this title also appears on the book's cover.

My Hat is one of B-P's least-known titles and because of this and the fact that the book contains the work of another author, it is often missing from other Baden-Powell Bibliographies.

1929 Scouting and Youth Movements Sir Robert Baden-Powell. Benn's Sixpenny Library No. 82. No Illustrations. Ernest Benn, 79pp

Scouting and Youth

IN his preface, B-P points out that the public are generally occupied with "cinema stars, Test Matches, Cup Finals and murders". These "false values" he lays at the heart of the nation’s ills. Baden–Powell hoped to show in this book that the work of organisations such as the Boy’s Brigade, Church Lad's Brigade, the YMCA and of course his Scout Movement could make a difference.

His chapters are clear and concise. B-P sets out, "The Need", "The Origin", "The Organisation" and "The Training" that are required to make this difference. It had to be concise, because each page averaged only 200 words and there are only 79 pages, though all are without illustrations.

Having addressed the nature of Scouting, B-P goes on to give credit to the adults already involved in the Movement and reveals the real purpose in writing the book: B-P was angling, as ever, for leaders. Benn’s Sixpenny Library was chosen as the medium for this message because, as the other 250 plus titles published up to this date demonstrate, it was likely to be read by a thinking, moral audience, the ideal target for a recruiting drive.

Later chapters deal with The Religious Aim, Is Scouting a Military Movement? and the Imperial and International dimensions. These chapter titles were chosen so that B-P could counter the main objections made against Scouting by the critics of the day. The Founder’s responses are cogently argued to cut the ground from under any would-be helper who might have had lingering doubts.

As a recruiting document the book was tour-de-force, though its present-day rarity leads one to question just how widely it was read.

1933 Lessons from the 'Varsity of Life Lord Baden-Powell. C Arthur Pearson Ltd., 316pp


BADEN-POWELL outlines his own formal education and then proceeds through a chronology of the events and activities that shaped his two 'lives'. There is a B-P water-colour, 'The Gates of Troy', and fine line drawings and photographs. The book was written as B-P's final 'message' to his Scouts, though thankfully he was to live for eight more years and write other titles.

1934 Adventures and Accidents Lord Baden-Powell of Gilwell, GCMC, CCVO, KCB. Methuen & Co., 184pp


THIS basically is a book of B-P's reminiscences. In it he gives his own account of the controversy that was said to have followed the issue of the Mafeking Blue stamps with his portrait instead of that of Queen Victoria. There is a very full account of the 1911 Windsor Rally, which will figure in a future Milestone Page. The book is wonderfully illustrated with 10 half-tone sketches and water-colour paintings.

1935 Scouting Round the World By The Chief Scout, Lord Baden-Powell of Gilwell. Herbert Jenkins, 192pp

Round the World

THE book records the round-the-world voyage undertaken in 1934 by the Chief Scout, Lady Baden-Powell and their two daughters. The journey required several ships, all normal service liners, as well as a special carriage attached to the Trans-Canadian Railway. This was the Baden-Powell's second major cruise of the year, having already been on the Cruise of the Calgaric.

As might have been expected, the Chief was welcomed everywhere he went by enthusiastic Scouts. (I am not quite sure how the other 'normal' fare-paying passengers reacted to all the Scout yells and chants from Sea Scouts who came out in their boats to welcome The Founder!) Once ashore, there were formal receptions and rallies, ranging from a single Scout troop to a march-past by 11,000 Scouts at the Australian Jamboree at Frankston, on Port Phillip Bay, just south of Melbourne, Victoria.

Amongst the highlights of book is the Chief's description of his watching through a telescope his daughters climb the Franz Joseph Glacier in New Zealand and the occasion when his wife, the Chief Guide, became an honorary Plains Indian, 'Emanis Akeor' or 'Otter Women', in Calgary, Canada. B-P met US President Franklin Roosevelt in the White House before returning home on the Majestic, which, he said, lived up to its name and was a wonderful floating hotel, although B-P made it clear that he would have much preferred a 'real ship'.

1936 Adventuring to Manhood Lord Baden-Powell of Gilwell. C Arthur Pearson Ltd., 192pp


Amixture of personal reminiscences and Scouting stories. B-P explores the full symbolism contained in the Rover Scouts ritual such as the vigil. He has a chapter on his own induction into Sea Scouting (His boyhood cruises with his brothers, see The History of Sea Scouting). Illustrated with the usual B-P line drawings.

1937 African Adventures Lord Baden-Powell. C Arthur Pearson Ltd., 191pp

African Adventures

THIS is B-P's own account of his journeys around Africa in 1937 and is scattered with reminisces of earlier tours and his military service. The book is illustrated with simple, yet charming, black and white line drawings. On this visit the B-Ps visited sixteen 'Scout Centres' and on the return cruise, the Scouting communities on Ascension Island and St. Helena

There is no conclusion but a 'Farewell'; B-P it must be remembered was 81 at the time. The 'Farewell' however is not so much a 'last message', more a giving of veiled notice of his intention to return to Africa to live. It's not that far away says B-P "If you are in a hurry it only takes four and half days by air."

1938 Birds and Beasts of Africa Lord Baden-Powell. Macmillan, 169pp

Birds and Beasts

THE book is dedicated to Eric and Lady Beattie Walker. Eric Walker served Scouting in its early years and in later life founded the Outspan Hotel at Nyeri, Kenya, and the adjacent famous Treetops Hotel. B-P had visited these locations as the Walkers' guests and this resulted in B-P taking shares and building a permanent home, Pax-tu, there. This was B-P's final residence. The book is filled with life, colour and energy. The colour comes from illustrations of B-P's original water-colours. The book recounts B-P's experiences with his animal contacts at Nyeri. Birds and beasts have personal names but never loose their animal characteristics. Their antics are based on very close observation. Particularly endearing are those of the hydrax that was to become the family house pet.

1939 Paddle Your Own Canoe Baden-Powell. Macmillan, 155pp


WRITTEN at Paxtu, his final home in Kenya, B-P was 82 when this, his penultimate book, was published. There are aspects of it that seem to be a compendium of previous ideas and the dust jacket, although it could have served well for either of the previous titles, seems to have little to do with paddling one's own canoe! (The hard cover, however, does carry a very attractive gold-blocked image of a canoe explorer.) The Chief explained his choice of title as being a core message for all Scouts, but would have been better suited to another of his books, Rovering to Success, which uses the analogy of a canoe journey for each of its chapters.

Baden-Powell uses his long and active involvement with animals to bring home the message to his Scout audience that they should be prepared to shift for themselves. I emphasise 'Scout audience', as I have a suspicion that B-P, either consciously or sub-consciously, aimed this book at younger target audience than was his norm, and although the book is amply illustrated by the usual line drawings, they too seem to be aimed at a younger audience than usual, as they are nearly all very simple humorous cartoons.

The significance the publishing date of 1939 is shown in one of the final chapters, when B-P writes about the ‘Duty of Service’. There is some very good advice to boys about mastering skills that might be useful in a war, whilst there is still peace-time left in which to practice. As was the case for the First World War, B-P clearly predicted that the forthcoming war was inevitable.

1940 More Sketches of Kenya Lord Baden-Powell. Macmillan, 152pp

More Sketches

BADEN-POWELL'S last book and very much a sequel to Birds and Beasts of Africa, continuing B-P's love affair with the animals, domestic and wild, around his final home at Pax-tu, Nyeri, Kenya. The opening line of the book states "The Nearer you are to Nyeri, the Nearer your are to Happiness." The surrounding countryside, as B-P demonstrates, is clearly 'a land for animal lovers'. In the book we meet old friends such the house pet Hyrie the Hydrax and more members of the 'bird club', with 'the big five' of African wild life also present. As usual, the book is illustrated by B-P's charming line drawings.

As you will have noted from other entries in this Bibliography there are one or two books that contain a 'final' message. It is a little ironic that in this, the last of B-P's books, written only a year before his death, there is no farewell. B-P portrays an idyllic setting in which he was clearly happy, surrounded by his human and animal friends. His written words speak of a deserved contentment. Who could ask for anything more?

Books Concluded?

THE list of titles, though long, does not daunt the serious collectors of my acquaintance. The number of editions however, especially if you were to count foreign language versions, would require a very serious library indeed! Books are meant to be read, but a necessary step, particularly if the author is dead, is their preservation. Many of the titles in this list, particularly if dust jackets are not required, can be still be bought very cheaply. However, some of the earlier titles are extremely rare and command very high prices.


BADEN-POWELL was a most prolific author and, if his contributions to The Scout, Headquarters Gazette and The Scouter were to be counted, he must surely have a world record for most words published. It is very difficult to draw a line between book and booklet, booklet and pamphlet, and pamphlet and article. What follows is a listing of some of the better-known separately published but short works without a hard cover. It would be very presumptuous indeed to claim that this was anywhere near complete and if you are aware of any others we would be very happy to include them.

1896 The Native Levy in the Ashanti Expedition. 1895/6 Major R S S Baden-Powell, 13th Hussars. Royal United Service Institution. 7pp. 6½" x 9½"

"OUR frequent little wars in all parts of the globe necessitate continually the raising of native levies, and yet one looks in vain for any book that gives one details of organisation, or even the experience of previous efforts, and that may serve as a guide to similar work when occasion demands it."

So Baden-Powell describes in this pamphlet his motivation for writing his book, The Downfall of Prempeh, illustrated and reviewed above. I have read both, though at a little distance in time from each other, and my impression is that the pamphlet is far less anecdotal and tries to serve as a memo to fellow officers on what might be expected in a similar situation. B-P concludes the pamphlet by what would today be taken as an admission of guilt, but in the days of Empire-building was a fact of life in dealing with native forces under white leadership, or come to that discipline within our own armies. "Strict justice goes a very long way towards bringing natives under discipline...up to the point of shooting one’s own men."

On a happier but similar theme, B-P explains that the very best way of coping in exasperating situations was to whistle! "There this nothing like whistling an air when you feel exasperated beyond patience. 'Softly, softly, catchee monkey'. And I believe that is only by acting in this way that a man could, on the Gold Coast, organise a native levy and – live."

Twelve years later this sentiment was to be enshrined as one of the nine original Scout Laws - "A Scout smiles and whistles under all circumstances".

1897 The Campaign in Rhodesia

1900 Memoranda for Cavalry Scouts and Vedettes (Taken from 1883 On Vedette - see book section) Major General R S S Baden-Powell, FRGS, 13th Hussars. Argus C., Salisbury, 2pp


THE pamphlet is a revised version of On Vedette. It is a double-sided single sheet printed on both sides, designed to be read in the field. Note the reinforced hole at the top, and the instruction that it should "…carried inside the head-dress" Basically, it very a short manual for Army Scouts on how to give useful and concise reports.

1901 Notes and Instructions for the South African Constabulary R S S Baden-Powell Major-Genl., Inspector General, South African Constabulary. T Maiskew Miller, 99pp (excl. appendices), 4" x 6"

SA Cops

THIS, as the title implies, is a manual for the Constabulary which was set up by Baden-Powell during the Boer War, less than six months after the Relief of Mafeking. (B-P wrote the preface in Pretoria in October 1900.) As there were no inherited traditions, B-P was able apply his ideas and principals from the start, even to the extent of designing the uniform which was, without doubt, the basis for that worn by Boy Scouts in 1908. Unfortunately the booklet does not contain any illustrations.

There are seven sections with appendices that detail, chapter and verse, how the new force is to be run. Section II is headed by familiar words 'Conduct of Scouts and Patrols', though the terms 'Scout' and 'Patrol' apply to army scouting and were by no means fresh concepts, having been well-explored by B-P in his earlier books. (See book section above.)

The 'cover image' shown here is in fact that of the flyleaf. Should any reader have access to a complete copy, we would be very grateful to use a scan of it, with, of course, an appropriate acknowledgement.

1907 Boy Scouts Scheme Lieut.-General Baden-Powell., CB. 4¼" x 5½", 28pp


THE booklet has a message printed in red on its inner cover, A suggestion which may help any man who desires to do a good turn to his country, his neighbour and himself. There then follows a series of 'hints', sometimes three to a page, in which B-P puts forward the case for 'Peace Scouting' as a remedy to hooliganism. A list of "men who are best the best qualified", to run such a scheme follows: "Schoolmasters; clergymen; members of the YMCA; Legion of Frontiersmen; officers of the Cadet Corps; Boys and Church Lads Brigades; Rifle Clubs; country squires; telegraph-masters, etc." These adults were encouraged to gather to themselves a patrol of six to eight 'smart lads'. A handbook 'Scouting for Boys' is promised in the near future to assist them. Baden-Powell is careful not to "teach my grandmother to suck eggs", addressing his 'hints' only to those who had not had previous practice in teaching boys.

The 'experimental camp' on Brownsea Island is described and there are hints on how to acquire and maintain a 'club room' which would need to have a 'bright fire' in winter, and the provision of a coffee bar would help develop a regular income to offset costs. There is advice on religion and discipline and the book concludes with a further exhortation to the reader to "train half a dozen boys."

The booklet predates Scouting for Boys, and is of vital significance. Clearly the long-term future of the Movement required adult leadership to assist the rising tide of boy-initiated patrols, inspired by the author's Aids to Scouting. This pamphlet ensured their supply.

"Play the Game: Don’t look on", "The British Empire wants your help".

1909 A Trip to Sunshine Reprinted from The Graphic. Lieut-Gen. Sir R S S Baden-Powell 6" x 8", 16pp

Trip to Sunshine

THIS is surely the 'Rolls-Royce' of B-P pamphlets. Although there are only a few pages, the pamphlet is lavishly illustrated, some pages having as many as three delightful watercolours by Baden-Powell, two being full plate. As befitted the sophisticated readership of The Graphic, B-P’s style is far more descriptive than usual and although devoid of 'teaching points' there is a lot to learn!

We are told by the author that he was seeing a friend off from Southampton Docks when he "got the scent of sunshine". The "wander-lust" came over him; he bought a ticket and was on the next Royal Mail Steam Packet to South America. I wonder what Scout Headquarters made of that?

The booklet is a wonderful travelogue, but, as is usual in B-P's commentaries, no dates are mentioned. There are wonderful descriptions and watercolours of Rio de Janeiro and of Chile, though often the illustrations are not referred to in the text.

There is scant reference to Scouting, but it is clear that it was never far from The Founder's mind.

"We began our journey among Boy Scouts in Southampton, and when we reached the furthest point of it the Boy Scouts were to be found, Buenos Aries has its corps of them, and in Chile there are 4,000 of them today." (Remember this is 1909! Chile was the second country in the world to have Scouting.)

Just in case the reader too could smell the sunshine, the inside back cover carried a full page advertisement for the Royal Mail Steam Packet Company's cruise!

1909 Aims Methods and Needs Sir Robert Baden-Powell, Bart., GCMG, GCVO, KGM, FRGS, LLD. Boy Scouts Association, 5½" x 8½", 19pp. 1 line drawing


"MANY people", B-P wrote, "still ask 'what is Scouting?'" This pamphlet is his answer. As a part of 'Aims', B-P explains that he wanted to help boys on leaving school to find employment, but to avoid 'blind alley' jobs. He opened up, for example, the possibility of employment in the 'Dominions'. (15 years later 'Scout Migration' was more fully explored in a pamphlet The Boy Scout and Overseas Settlement, also reviewed on this Page.)

Under 'Methods', the training scheme, with a description of the badge system, was outlined. A key principle was that the boys themselves should find the finance necessary for their group and it should not "be solicited". The religious dimension of Scouting is examined and every Scout was expected to "belong to some religious denomination and attend its services."

The Association’s greatest 'Need' was not funds, but Scoutmasters. The way in which people might contribute their time or money was clearly laid out with a contact address and a form to use to bequest money to the Scout Association.

Baden-Powell may well have been pleased with the pamphlet's content - but he was not pleased with the original cover. There is a note dated March 19th, 1914 from B-P to a Mr Cameron (now in the UK Scout Archives) that, when the pamphlet was reprinted, "I suggest a better cover. A few Scouting pictures (as in leaflet) to attract. If any adverts are taken I hope they will all be put at the end. But personally I am against them." B-P did not always get all his own way; later covers have 'scouting pictures', but carry adverts. at the front and back!

1909 Pocahontas. A display for Boy Scouts Lt.-General Sir Robert Baden-Powell, K.C.B. 16pp

Image courtesy of the Collection of Brian Shields, Kentucky, USA

WHILST I have never seen a copy of this, it would seem likely that is the play contained in the part series of Scouting for Boys and also published in Scouting Games in 1910. There are a few of B-P's illustrations in the pamphlet.

1910 Boy Scouts in Connection with National Training and National Service

1910 Workers or Shirkers Lt.-Gen. Sir Robert Baden-Powell. 6½" x 9¾"

Workers or Shirkers

THE pamphlet is an article reprinted from Pearson’s Magazine, which, on a monthly basis, examined "some of the most pressing problems which must be solved if Britain is to maintain her position of pre-eminence amongst the nations" by "those best qualified to do so".

The first two pages are taken up with eulogies written by the 'great and the good' of the day, including HRH, The Duke of Connaught (the President of the Scout Association at the time) endorsing B-P's every word.

Baden-Powell harangues "the idle poor", tramps who are "happy, healthy and dirty" who can lie and watch others working, just as he lambastes the idle rich "who do little else but loll, like ladies, behind a steering wheel and who are to be met in hundreds driving about the country" (presumably by B-P driving his car at the time). "The loafer is content to sit and think, or profess to think, whilst his fellows are doing the world’s work". "The workers complain only of the shortness of time available for doing their work, the shirkers complain ... of the shortness of time which does not allow them to take up their work." B-P goes on to describe "racing loafers", "woman loafers" and "rich loafers" who are blind to the misery all around them in the lower classes. Some of this misery was, however, self-inflicted as £189,000,000 was spent every year on alcohol and tobacco, resulting in "dire consequences for the National Economy", though B-P does not explain how he would make up the revenue from taxes accruing to the Exchequer on these items if they were no longer purchased. B-P quotes King George V in exhorting England to "Wake Up", and the pamphlet concludes with a description of his Scout Movement. Candidly B-P admits he started with a mistake! His principle of "Begin with the Boys" was flawed. "I believe within my heart that it should be 'Begin with the Girls', because they are to be the mothers and the character educators of the following generation."

As might be expected, there is an exhortation for men and women to join with B-P in this great work and instructions on "How to help", though, surprisingly, these are of little practical value as there is no contact address or any advice on how to join the Movement. However, there is no doubt that the pamphlet was a success. B-P was later to claim that 10,000 men had volunteered to be involved in Scouting as a result of this pamphlet.

1911 Sea Scouting for Boys Sir Robert Baden-Powell KCB. James Brown and Son., Glasgow. 4½" x 5¾"

Sea Scouting for Boys

THE pamphlet introduced a new section to the Movement. "What is Sea Scouting?" asks B-P, and he gives the answer, "... one of the several forms of work carried out by Boy Scouts in further development of their Scout Training." and the new Scheme of Training is outlined. B-P envisaged that there would be two kinds of 'Sea Scouts', Coastguard Scouts and 'Seaman Scouts'.

A Sea Scout troop was to be known as a 'Ship's Company', a term which I do not think ever gained wide usage. Patrol Leaders were to be known as Coxswains and Sea Scouts would wear a normal Scout Uniform, but a man of war seaman's cap or sou'wester instead of the usual 'wide-awake' hat.

"Boy Scouts Coastguards", wrote The Founder, "are being recognised by the Marine Department as assistants to the Coastguards and Coast Watchers". Recognition however was not to be complete until the start of the First World War.

"A club Guard-Ship is of first importance ... any old hulk would do but it would require a range of smaller workable vessels". One such vessel, we are informed, was already in operation, manned by Boy Scouts, in Vancouver, Canada.

The booklet concludes with the news that a detailed book of instruction on the subject was to be published shortly, written by B-P’s brother, Warington Baden-Powell K.C., late of the Royal Naval Reserve. His book is reviewed on The Early History of Sea Scouting Page.

1914 Report on Boy Scouts Overseas Lt-Gen. Sir Robert Baden-Powell, KCB &c.

Report on Boy Scouts Overseas

THIS pamphlet is the official report of Baden-Powell's overseas travels in 1912, more fully chronicled in his book Boys Scouts Beyond the Seas, published in 1913 and reviewed above.

The Chief Scout’s visits around the world were officially 'tours of inspection', which no doubt justified their expense. B-P's general finding was that standards everywhere were "... on the whole quite good" - which sounds to me a little like damning with faint praise, though Canada is singled out being head and shoulders above all other countries in terms of numbers and organisation.

Baden-Powell, always strongly in favour of the men that "built up our Empire", often maintained, as he does in this report that, "The overseas boy is generally more forward and self-reliant for his age than the English boy". He lists "the possible uses for the Boy Scout Movement" which might be of value, presumably to the 'mother country'. I feel some of these are well worth further exploration:- "Extinction of Race Feeling between Boers and British boys in South Africa and French and British Canadians in Canada". This was B-P at his visionary best putting into practice his finest creation, the fourth Scout Law. The same message of conciliation formed the theme for the Great Trek pamphlet (also reviewed on this Page) some 24 years later.

One of B-P's pet projects at the time was Buckhurst Scout Farm in Sussex where Scouts received residential training to fit them for a career in farming. (This will form the basis of a future Milestone). "Every Dominion", B-P reported, "was showing great interest in the scheme" [at Buckhurst Farm] "and expressed themselves willing to take its 'graduates'". This was probably the start of the 'Overseas Migration' scheme covered in The Boy Scout and Overseas Settlement pamphlet, also reviewed on this Page.

1915 (Published prior to June 1916) British Discipline Lieut.-General Sir R S S Baden-Powell, CB, KCVO, FRGS

British Discipline

THIS pamphlet was published by the Duty and Discipline Movement, founded by The Earl of Meath, a friend of Baden-Powell and a member of the Scout Association's Executive Committee. He is famously depicted in the 1920 Imperial Jamboree Book standing next to the youngest cub to attend, as he was the oldest adult present, aged 80. B-P attended committee meetings of the D & D Movement.

The aims of the movement were:- "To combat softness, slackness, indifference and indiscipline, and to stimulate discipline and a sense of duty and alertness throughout the national life, especially during the formative period of home and school training" and "to give reasonable support to all legitimate authority".

As far as I am aware, the Movement was mainly active during the years of the First World War. I have letter from the Earl of Meath dated April 1917, in which he says he has 4,000 signed supporters (who had all paid a membership fee). Baden-Powell's 'essay' was no 32 in a series of 40, written by a range of prominent citizens such as Field Marshal Earl Roberts, prominent women educationalists, various bishops and the Earl of Meath himself.

Baden-Powell's pamphlet evokes icons of patriotism, such Lord Nelson, who famously called upon every man to do his duty, (B-P informs us that British sailors wear black neckerchiefs still, out of respect for his passing), the Battle of Balaclava and the sinking of the Birkenhead, a troopship without enough lifeboats, where the men were steadfast in going to their certain deaths, in allowing the women and the children to escape in the few boats available.

Baden-Powell concludes:- "So be a good brick in this great nation of ours, be strong and stick to your duty, obey orders cheerily and at once, and don't be a waster; play the game without thinking of your own comfort or safety, but in order that your own side may win - that the great Empire to which you belong may be strong and flourish for ever."

1916 Report on the Boy Scouts and Girl Guides in South Africa by the Chief Scout and the Chief Guide

Report on South Africa

1917 Scouting Towards Reconstruction Sir Robert Baden-Powell, Chief Scout. 16pp, 19 line drawings

Scouting Towards Reconstruction

1918 Today and Tomorrow

1920 Boy Scouts and Citizenship


ISSUED in Conjunction with the 1920 Wembley Jamboree.

1920 Scouting in Education Pamphlet

Scouting in Education

1924 The Boy Scout and Oversea Settlement Pamphlet, 8pp. Boy Scouts Association

Oversea Settlement

BADEN-POWELL was a fervent believer in the British Empire. From his own experience, gained from living in India and Africa and subsequent frequent 'world tours', he could visualise the benefits to be obtained, both for the nation and the individual, from encouraging unemployed young men from Britain's depressed industrial centres to help open up the outposts of the Empire. To this end he instituted a department within Imperial Scout Headquarters to encourage 'Scout Migration'. This pamphlet explains its rôle and the possibilities for migration open to older Scouts. Like the Scouts' Friendly Society, this was a case of better that the Scout Association promotes and organises Scout involvement, than commercial operators who were already targeting Scouts as potential migrants.

The concept of being a pioneer suited Scout philosophy
"there are, today, empty British Continents waiting to be populated by Britishers. Look Wide."
"A warm welcome awaits the British Scout from his brother Scouts oversea. Above all there is a certainty of work at a decent wage for the newcomer and a good chance of independence in due time for the willing worker."
Success, the pamphlet goes on, depends on a willingness to work, a willingness to learn and being patient.

One important plus that the Scout Migration Department had over any commercial organization, was that it could promise links within the worldwide Scout brotherhood to existing troops in the target country. I have no figures for the success of the scheme, but from time-to-time letters would appear in Headquarters Gazette from young men who had successfully made the transition.

If you, or a relative, were part of this scheme we would very much like to hear from you with a view to compiling a web article on 'Scout Migration' in these Pages.

1927 Hints on the Scout Tests Published by Boycraft

1927 South African Tour 1926-27 Robert Baden-Powell. Booklet, 83pp plus double-page map of the tour, 2 line drawings including goodbye card

South African Tour

Areport on the Boy Scouts and Girl Guides in South Africa by the Chief Scout and the Chief Guide, based on their visit to South Africa between September 20th, 1936 and April 1st, 1927.

1932 Rover Scouts Pamphlet

1936 The Great Trek of the Early Scouts of South Africa Baden-Powell Chief Scout. 5½" x 8½", 20pp, 9 line drawings

Great Trek

THE pamphlet commemorates the 100th anniversary of 'The Great Trek' which was a mass exodus by wagon-train of 2,000 Boer farmers or 'Voortreckers' as they were called at the time. They journeyed from the South African Cape into the interior of a Africa in order to escape from the restricting laws of the British Government, which they felt impinged on their culture - especially on their 'right' to own slaves.

Baden-Powell briefly chronicles the history of South Africa in a way which might surprise some. He describes his old enemy, the Boers, as "fine sturdy strong minded individuals" of "independent spirit" and of being "real scouts". The Great Trek is described and there several stories of 'Boy Heroes'.

Baden-Powell alludes to the ethnic origin and characteristics of the peoples present in South Africa at the time, for the purpose of informing his Boy Scout readers of "how necessary it is for all races to sink differences of the past and work together for the greater good". B-P suggests that South Africa faced "another Great Trek, this time an ideological one where people had to move from the old ways of thinking to a new beginning based on 'Love your neighbour as yourself'". He called upon the Scouts of the world bring about this new order.

The message was first propagated by B-P in a pamphlet Report on Boy Scouts Overseas, also reviewed on this Page, published some 24 years earlier. That however does not detract from the visionary nature of his words which, despite the removal of apartheid, are still relevant today.

1939 About Those Boy Scouts Baden-Powell. Booklet, printed on card, 7pp, 8 line drawings

About Boy Scouts

THIS took the form of a facsimile of an open hand-written letter, with pen and ink drawings, to prospective financial sponsors.

The document is a well-directed adult recruiting tool. The psychology is excellent as it takes the form of a very informal handwritten letter direct from Baden-Powell. To break up the pages and keep the mood light, there are eight delightful cartoon caricatures that could not fail to raise a smile.

The reader is cajoled into realising that they are just the right person to help, though some of B-P's criteria would rule many of us out today, "Can you ... stalk your own stag ... milk a cow ... stop a runaway horse?" "9 out of 10 of our workers", writes B-P had what they thought were valid reasons for not helping, "before they joined and before they found themselves up to the neck – heart and soul - in it, in spite of them."

Whatever the age or condition of the reader, there was to be no escape! B-P wanted hobby instructors, organizers, physical trainers etc, "and the number of invalids whom Scouting has led to forget their ills is very large." (this enlivened with a caricature of a very old and be-whiskered gent leap-frogging over a Scout!)

The Scoutmaster, we are told, does not need to demonstrate every virtue, the only requirement is an understanding of "the boy". "The prevalent crime throughout our nation is self–interest", claimed B-P, but goes on to say that there is something in Scouting for the individual, because, besides helping the country and youngsters, it would bring the helper, "close to God". He concludes:

"May I send you some further information on the subject?"


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