MEDALS AND KNOTS
BRUCE C JOHNSON (JOHNSON@MAIL.LOC.GOV)
Thu, 26 May 1994 07:51:07 GMT
I'm sure that 98 % of the Scouts-L readership is now
thoroughly tired of the military medals and knots issue, but here
goes. First of all, I stand (actually sit ;-) ) corrected about
the maximum number of knots wearable until the early '70s. For
what it's worth, for most of that period, there wasn't more than
5 knots that one could wear!
Ribbon bars were in use at least as early at June of 1934
(see SCOUTING magazine, June 1934, page 20):
"A ribbon bar 1 3/8" long and 1/4" wide, bearing a section
of the decoration ribbon will be provided for certain official
decorations or awards of the Boy Scouts of America. This bar may
be worn by the Scout or Scouter to whom the decoration or award
has been presented, upon the left breast of the Uniform coat, or
shirt, below the Service Stars, whenever it is not proper to wear
the decoration or award itself. Both should not be worn at the
"This shall be available for wearers of the Honor Medal,
Silver Buffalo, Silver Beaver, Scoutmaster's Key, Scouter's
Training Award, Eagle and Quartermaster Badges and similar awards
made to our Scouters by foreign Scout Associations for which
ribbon bars are not provided."
Ribbon bars were in use until 1946 when they were replaced
by knots. To my knowledge, there was never a ribbon bar for
Skipper's Key (the award being available since 1938), but there
was a ribbon bar for Silver Antelope, which was first awarded in
1943. I also believe that neither the Ranger Award nor the Ace
Award had ribbon bars since neither actually had pendent awards
until about 1946. Both did, however, have square knots and are
now the most difficult knots to find.
One last thing ... upon thinking about the list of knots and
when they were first available, I neglected to mention two awards
added during the '80s: The Scoutmaster's Award of Merit and the
Distinguished Commissioner's Award. (My apologies once again if
I'm remembering the names of these awards inaccurately.)
Bruce (I wish my memory was just a little better) Johnson
Oh yes ... The Eagle, Quartermaster, Scouter's Key, Scouter's
Training Award, and Silver Beaver were all available at one time
with khaki (scout), dark green (explorer), white (sea scout), and
blue (sea scout) backgrounds. (Actually, Quartermaster didn't
have a dark green background knot.)
. Bruce Chr. Johnson Telephone: 202-707-1652 .
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