Re: Getting Elected to the Order of the Arrow
Michael F. Bowman (mfbowman@CAPACCESS.ORG)
Sun, 16 Jun 1996 21:13:14 -0400
Kevin, Rob, Mike Walton, et al.,
Mike suggested in one of his postings that he recalled that voting for
membership in the OA was restricted to non-members and this changed in
the late sixties. Kevin raised a question, not recalling such a change.
And Rob correctly pointed out that the literature does not reflect there
was such a change.
Mike was correct in recalling that there was a change in who could vote
in an O-A election. That change in fact did take place in 1969, but it
was a slightly different change. To understand it, a relatively short
bit of history is needed.
>From what I could find in The Brotherhood of Cheerful Service: A History
of the Order of the Arrow, there were some differing opinions on who
should vote in an election. In 1926 these differences were fairly well
resolved by determining that candidates could be voted on only by those
boys who had been associated with the candidates in camp during the time
immediately preceding the vote. At the same time the Committee on Ideals
proposed that the election be in two parts with Arrowmen compiling
ratings on each candidate and only those candidates getting a minimum
score established by the lodge were to be put up for election. Some
Councils adopted this particular suggestion. However by 1929 at least
one Region, Region 3, had declared that a Lodge does not have the
privilege of veto. This left election by Troop members as the method of
In 1946 elections were to be held in troops during the year and not at camp.
At the 1967 NOAC in Nebraska changes were approved that became mandatory
on January 1, 1969 based on E. Urner Goodman's 50th Anniversary
Challenge. Those changes were:
1. The rank requirement was restated to allow an electee six months
after an election to obtain First Class.
2. Explorers had to have six months of service.
3. There was a time limit established on induction - one year.
4. Unit leaders had to certify formally that each candidate met all of
the requirements including Scout spirit and participation.
5. The number of candidates was now to be based on the total number of
unit members, not just Scout campers in the unit.
6. The unit leader was to announce the results immediately after the
7. Eagles were given special consideration and did not count against the
Since 1969 there have been a few other changes and previous postings have
accurately described the current election rules.
Speaking Only for Myself in the Scouting Spirit, Michael F. Bowman
a/k/a Professor Beaver (WB), ASTA #2566, OA Vigil Honor '71, Eagle
Scout '67, Serving as Deputy District Commissioner for Training,
G.W.Dist., Nat. Capital Area Council, BSA - email@example.com
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City