Re: Knots with uniform or program color background
settummanque, or blackeagle (blkeagle@DYNASTY.NET)
Sat, 22 Nov 1997 17:43:59 -0600
Dave Loomis asked:
>What can you tell us about the older practce of having many of the
>knots, like the Eagle, Scouter's Key, and Scouter's Training Award
>supplied on blue, khaki, and green, to match the color of the uniform
>currently being worn?
A lot. The practice started in the middle 50s, when the BSA had as many as
five different youth uniforms out there:
*a skyblue shirt for Air Explorers
*a navy blazer for formal wear by Sea Explorers
*a while jumper for informal (regular) wear by Sea Explorers
* a dark (kelly) green shirt for wear by all other Explorers (and later on,
by Leadership Corps members of Boy Scout Troops)
* the khaki shirts associated with all other BSA programs and which could be
worn by Explorers in crews
When the BSA moved to the newer khakitan uniforms, there waa a lot of
discussion on whether or not to continue those other knot emblems for
"unforming which eventually nobody wears anymore". Sea Explorers were the
only Exploring "group" that wore special uniforms, and those few Explorers
that wore the kelly green shirts, were really either youth officers, members
of outdoor posts, or adults.
So, that's why at first, the Explorer shirt went away and with it, the other
square knots on various backgrounds. They were still being made available,
but as time went onward, there were new uses for the older knots. For
instance, the Heroism Award knot is actually the Honor Medal knot on white
for the Sea Exploring whites. It was decided that any new awards would
first use the existing older knots if possible before new designs were made
That didn't satisfy the BSA's programming divisions, which wanted new and
distinctive knot emblems for their programs. The Exploring Division fought
to keep kelly green as its background for the Spurgeon Award and won. The
original design for it called for the older Silver Beaver on kelly green
knot to be used for the knot. The Cub Scout Division wanted to use its own
colors and not the older Sea Exploring nor Air Exploring backgrounds.
It is my understanding that the Ranger knot and the Silver Award knot are
coming back as part of the Exploring Divisions Advancement Program, to be
announced at the end of this month or the first part of next!
It's a good thing that the programming divisions won out, because if they
didn't, there would be a lot of confusing knot emblems being worn today.
Which brings me to....
>I know I had an Eagle knot with green B/G when I was an AA in the 60's,
>but I couldn't find any reference to it.
I am still looking for those knots on kelly green because there's a lot of
Explorers and Exploring leaders that are wearing the shirts today and the
newer knots don't look too great on that dark background!!
Your memory was correct:
*The Eagle Scout Badge was available on khahi, kelly green, dark blue and
*The Scouters' Training Award and Scouters' Key Awards were also available
with those same backgrounds, as well as the Silver Beaver Award.
*The Honor Medal was available with khaki, dark blue and white
backgrounds...the same went for the Merit Medal.
You may continue to wear them on the Explorer shirt if you are registered as
an Explorer or Exploring leader and if you can *find the knots with the
appropriate background* (you can wear the current knots as well, but like I
said, it really looks strange!)
>Also has there been any guidance on changes in earning the Scouter's
>Key and Training Award. Loosely speaking the Key was reserved for
>"command' positions, and the Training Award for non-command work, >thus
Scoutmasters worked for the Key, and SAs, MCs, etc. worked for >the Training
The "key" is that word "Key" . The Key Scouter is the lead Scouter in that
*Cubmaster, Scoutmaster, Varsity Coach, Explorer Advisor, Sea Explorer Skipper*
The BSA has also reaffirmed that the District Commissioner and his or her
Assistants along with Unit Commissioners are also "key Scouters" as well as
All of those Scouters are able to earn the Scouter's Key Award in their
program EXCEPT CUBMASTERS. They have a new training award not tied with the
Key called the Cubmaster Award.
All other Scouters in a unit may work toward a Scouters' Training Award,
except for Cub Scouting leaders, whom have five other training awards for
Den Leaders and Assistants, WEBELOS Den Leaders and Assistants, Tiger Cub
Coaches, Den Leader Coaches and "all other Cub Scouters", called the Cub
>Now I am being told that new Scoutmasters may earn the Training Award
>in two years, and then use these same two years of tenure, double
>dipping so to speak, as two of the three required for the Key. I looked
>at a recent Training and Awards BA pub, but it wasn't very specific
>about these last two points.
Scoutmasters earn in this progression currently the Scoutmaster Award of
Merit and then the Key. Assistant Scoutmasters earn the Training Award.
The BSA's Leadership Development booklet states that "tenure used to earn a
Key cannot be used to earn a subsequent training award", but I've heard and
read here that other Scouters have done exactly as you've indicated....but
that's not the way the training program works for Scoutmasters, at least
that's not *my understanding* of how it's supposed to work!
The Scoutmaster Award of Merit is designed to fit in that first two years of
a Scoutmaster's tenure and makes the way for him or her to earn the rest of
the Key. The Training Award only takes two years, and I've never been able
to use those two year for any other training award or key.
The Leadership Development booklet is going revision and updating now, so
let's see what it's says in January when it's supposed to be released!!
Hope this helps out with both questions, Dave....
(c) 1997 Mike Walton ("no such thing as strong coffee,...") (502) 827-9201
(settummanque, the blackeagle) http://dynasty.net/users/blkeagle
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