GIRL SCOUT HISTORY TIMELINE 1860-2002  
  Oct. 31, 1860 - Birth of Juliette Gordon

December 12, 1886 - Juliette Gordon Marries William Mackay Low

1910 - Girl Guide movement begins in England

1911 - Juliette meets Sir Robert Baden-Powell, founder of Boy Scouts in England, and his sister, Agnes Baden-Powell founder of Girl Guides in England.

Juliette starts a Girl Guide company (troop) in the Scottish valley where she is spending the summer

1912 - March 12, Juliette Gordon Low establishes the first Girl Guide troop in the U.S. with 18 girls Margaret Daisy Gordon, Juliette's niece, becomes the first registered Girl Guide in America. 108 girls enrolled as members following the first troop meeting

The Tenderfoot Pin, (the trefoil), is chosen as the symbol to be used by Girl Guides

Camp Juliette Low is established in Georgia - only camp personally established by Juliette Low

Thanks Badge, an adult award, is introduced.

1913 - Girl Scouts becomes the new name for Girl Guides in America

W.J. Hoxie prepares the first official G.S. handbook, "How Girls Can Help Their Country"

June 1, National Headquarters established in Washington, D.C.

1914 - Trefoil design for membership badges is patented and becomes the official membership symbol. By now, 22 proficiency badges are in existence

1915 - Girl Scout membership reached 200 troops, 5,000 girls

Juliette Low sells her pearls to support the Girl Scout Movement

A Constitution and Bylaws are adopted at the First National Convention held in Washington, DC

Juliette Gordon Low is elected National President of the Girl Scouts, 1915-1920

National membership dues of 25 cents adopted

1916 - G.S. national headquarters is moved to New York City

Juliette Gordon Low introduced the Golden Eaglet of Merit Award - the highest award for girls in Girl Scouting

The first Brownie-age troop is organized in Marblehead, Massachusetts

1917 - Mrs. Woodrow Wilson, the country's First Lady, becomes the first honorary president of Girl Scouts, a tradition that continues today

Editorial Department is established at National Headquarters

The first issue of The Rally, a monthly publication for girls and leaders begins

First troop of physically disabled girls in the United States is organized in New York City

The first National Training School for Girl Scout leaders is established in Boston

1918 - Design of the Girl Scout Pin to include the letters "GS"

1919 - Concept of an International Council of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts began

Taps introduced at the First International Conference in Oxford England

The Golden Eaglet Award replaces the Golden Eaglet of Merit Award (they were different)

The Golden Eaglet, a black-and-white silent film, premiered in New York City's Fine Arts Theater on January 16th. Believed to be the first motion picture produced by a public service organization

First nationwide celebration of Girl Scout Week; the week beginning on the Sunday that included JGL's birthday, October 31.

First Blue Book of Rules published

1920 - At this time there are nearly 100 Girl Scout Councils in 11 states and the territory of Hawaii, with almost 70,000 girl members and over 3,000 troops

Juliette Low retires as President of Girl Scouts and takes the title "Founder of Girl Scouts"

October 31 becomes known as Founders Day in Girl Scouts

First International Conference of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts held in England

The U.S.A. introduced the song "Taps" to the Girl Guide and Girl Scout movement

Scouting for Girls, new handbook is published. This was the first handbook prepared by the national organization rather than by Juliette Low. It included sections on map making, sewing an American flag, and marching according to U.S. Infantry drill regulations.

American Girl magazine is published, titled changed from The Rally

Camp Andree Clark established as the first national Girl Scout camp, Briar Cliff Manor, NY

1922 - Field News, a monthly bulletin for Girl Scout leaders, began publication

1923 - The name Field News changes to The Girl Scout Leader

Formal training is made a requirement for leaders

Design of the Girl Scout pin changed - the eagle's shield now had seven stars, placed in two rows and seven stripes

1924 - Nov. 6 - Norman Rockwell draws Girl Scout cover for Life Magazine

International Conference of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts held in England

1926 - Camp Edith Macy at Briar Cliff Manor, NY is opened as a national training center

Fourth International Conference held at Camp Edith Macy with representatives from 29 countries

Program to include Brownie Girl Scouts, ages 7-9

Brown Book for Brown Owls published as the first official leader's guide to program for USA Brownie Girl Scouts

1927 - First group of U.S. Girl Scouts goes to an international event in Switzerland

Juliette Gordon Low dies

Juliette Low Memorial Fund is established in her memory to support projects and events promoting international understanding

Girl Scout handbook is revised

First United States Girl Scout Troops on Foreign Soil are registered

First celebration of Thinking Day, February 22

1928 - International Council is replaced by the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS) is formed

1929 - At the end of the year there are over 200,000 Girl Scouts

1930 - World Flag design is adopted

First all-Native American Girl Scout troop registers at the Indian Boarding School in Pawnee, Oklahoma

1932 - March 12 is designated as the official Girl Scouts birthday

Our Chalet opened in Adelboden, Switzerland, a gift of Mrs. Helen Storrow of Boston

1933 - The Girl Scout handbook is transcribed in large type

1934 - Mariner Scout program officially launched

The first documented council-wide cookie sale of commercially baked cookies, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

1936 - First nationally franchised Girl Scout cookie sale

1937 - 25th anniversary of Girl Scouting in the United States

National and International Silver Jubilee encampment held at Camp Andree Clark; 100 girls from the USA and 26 other countries came together to celebrate

1938 - Girl Scout membership reached one half million

Girl Scout program reorganized into three separate groups: Brownie Girl Scouts, ages 7-9, Intermediate Girl Scouts, ages 10-13 and Senior Girl Scouts ages 14-17

Over 1 million boxes of Girl Scout cookies are sold

1939 - The Girl Scout Chalet, a replica in miniature of Our Chalet in Switzerland, opened at the New York World's Fair. Served as a headquarters for Girl Scouts and their friends. Displayed and sold Girl Scout Equipment

Our Ark opens in London, England

Over 2 million boxes of Girl Scout cookies are sold

1940 - Curved Bar award introduced. The Curved Bar was the highest award in Girl Scouting from 1940 until 1963. Open only to First Class Girl Scouts, it served as a bridge to Senior Girl Scouting. The embroidered arc patch was used at first because of metal shortage during the war. The Curved Bar pin, introduced in the fall of 1947, was used until 1963, when the award was discontinued.

First Girl Scout troops for mentally and socially handicapped girls are registered (in institutions)

1941 - Wing Scout program developed for Senior Girl Scouts - emphasis on the study of flying and aviation

1943 - First Girl Scout calendar is produced for council fund raisers

"A Million or more by 44" was the membership objective

1944 - Girl Scout check for 15,430,000 hours of service given to FDR

Senior Girl Planning Conference held at Camp Edith Macy

1 million members register in Girl Scouts

A Liberty Ship, "S.S. Juliette Low" of the Merchant Marines is launched

More than 1/4 million girls go to Girl Scout camps

1945 - First Lou Henry Hoover Memorial Forest is dedicated

1946 - The World Badge adopted at the 11th World Conference in France

1947 - The name of the organization officially changes to Girl Scouts of the United States of America

1948 - The U.S. Postal Service issues a 3 cent commemorative stamp honoring Juliette Gordon Low. 750,000 stamps are sold in Savannah on the first day of issue

Design of the World Badge was adopted at the 12th World Conference in Cooperstown, NY

1949 - WAGGGS Pin introduced in the USA

Almost 1.5 million are registered in Girl Scouts

1950 - GSUSA is re-incorporated under a Congressional Charter

1951 - First Brownie Girl Scout Handbook for girls is published

North Atlantic Girl Scouts (NORAGS) established

1952 - Rockwood, in Potomac, Maryland dedicated as a National Girl Scout camping center (1952-1979)

1953 - GSUSA purchases Juliette Gordon Low's birthplace in Savannah, Georgia

Site of Our Cabana is acquired by WAGGGS

Annual Girl Scout week celebration is changed from October to March

1956 - Juliette Gordon Low's birthplace is dedicated, October 19

First Senior Girl Scout Round-Up in Michigan: 5,000 girls attended

1957 - 3 million members in Girl Scouts

The first world center for Girl Guides and Girl Scouts in the Western Hemisphere , Our Cabana, opens in Cuernavaca, Mexico

1958 - The Girl Scout headquarters in New York City are dedicated (not the present headquarters)

1959 - Our Ark moved to Earls Court, London, England

2nd Senior Roundup near Colorado Springs with 10,000 people in attendance

1960 - Juliette Low Centennial is celebrated

1962 - 50th anniversary of Girl Scouts

The Girl Scout Rose and Brownie Girl Scout Marigold developed to honor Girl Scouts

Post Office issues a 4 cent commemorative Girl Scout stamp

3rd Roundup for Senior Girl Scouts is held in Vermont, 10,000 people attending

1963 - Girl Scouts are divided into 4 age groups:

Brownie Girl Scouts, ages 7-9

Junior Girl Scouts, ages 9-11

Cadette Girl Scouts, ages 12-14

Senior Girl Scouts, ages 14-17

Under the new program introduced in 1963, the old Intermediate Girl Scout badges were divided into two groups to fit the interests and abilities of Junior and Cadette Girl Scouts. Junior Girl Scout badges (green borders) were aimed at exploration, rather than concentration on any given skill. Cadette Girl Scout badges (yellow borders) emphasized intensive work in particular areas of specialization.

New handbooks and leaders' guides are published

Junior program to include the Sign of the Arrow and the Sign of the Star

Our Ark is renamed Olave House

First Class was the highest award in Girl Scouting from 1963 - 1980. To receive the award, a Cadette Girl Scout had to earn several badges and meet four challenges, each of which was recognized with a pin. A challenge was a selected real-life situation designed to test a girl's ability to use knowledge and skill based on Girl Scout ideals and values

 

1964 - First Reader's Digest Foundation Grants are provided for Senior Girl Scout troops to do community service projects

Girl Scout handbook is published in Braille

Ryukyu Islands Girl Scout stamp was released to mark the 10th Anniversary of the Ryukyuan Girls Scouts. The Ryukyuan Girl Scouts were united with Japanese organization after return of the islands in 1972.

1965 - Brownie handbook is published in Spanish

4th Senior Roundup at Farragut, Idaho

1966 - Sangam, the fourth World Center, opens in Poona, India

1968 - Campus Girl Scouts becomes an official part of Girl Scouts

National Center West, Bighorn Mountains in Wyoming is established

1969 - Eco Action, a nationwide environmental education and improvement project is launched

1970 - 30 millionth member of GSUSA is registered

1972 - New wording of Girl Scout Promise and Law are adopted

Eight new Cadette Challenges are introduced

1973 - Portrait of Juliette Low is presented to the National Gallery in Washington, D.C.

Brownie membership is extended to 6 year olds

Brownie B's introduced

1974 - Bust of Juliette Low is placed in Georgia's Hall of Fame

1975 - Over 123 million boxes of Girl Scout cookies are sold

1976 - More that 150 Girl Scouts, 14-17 are delegates to the National Convention

Edith Macy National Center celebrates 50th anniversary

1977 - Worlds to Explore: Handbook for Brownie and Junior Girl Scouts is published

The Five Worlds of Interest in Girl Scouting are introduced

Junior Aide patch and Bridge to Juniors are introduced

1978 - Contemporary version of Girl Scout trefoil is launched as the official emblem featuring three-profile silhouettes of girls' faces

From Dreams to Reality, a career exploration project for Cadette and Senior Girl Scouts is published

Girl Scouts prepare to celebrate the UN's 'Year of the Child'

1979 - Juliette Low is inducted into the National Women's Hall of Fame in Seneca Falls, NY

American Girl magazine ceases publication

1980 - The Silver Award and the Gold Award becomes the second highest and highest awards in Cadette and Senior Girl Scouts

Sign of the Rainbow, Sign of the Star, Sign of the Satellite and Bridge to Cadettes introduced into the Junior Girl Scout program

1982 - Girl Scouts celebrate 70th anniversary

Edith Macy Conference Center dedicated

April 22 is established as Girl Scout Leader Day

Lifetime memberships are offered to adults for the first time

1983 - The Juliette Gordon Low Federal Complex is opened in Savannah, Georgia. This is the second Federal building to be named after a woman.

1984 - Daisy Girl Scout age level program for 5 year olds or girls in kindergarten is launched

Delegates vote to change the wording of the Girl Scout Promise

1985 - Contemporary issues resource, Tune Into Well-Being, Say No To Drugs introduced

1986 - Brownie Girl Scout Try-Its are introduced

Contemporary issues resource, Staying Safe, Preventing Child Abuse introduced

The Sign of the World introduced into the Junior program

1987 - Girl Scout 75th anniversary celebrated; theme, Tradition with a Future

The Post Office issues a stamp to commemorate GSUSA

1989 - The National Historic Preservation Center opens at National Headquarters

1991 - Earth Education programs introduced

1992 - Pilot program began at the Maryland Correctional Institution for Women for the Girl Scouts Beyond Bars program

1996 - New wording for Girl Scout law is adopted

New, separate handbooks for Cadettes and Seniors are published

1997 - 85th anniversary of Girl Scouts

Girl Scouts from all across the United States meet on the mall in Washington, DC, to sing songs in honor of 85th anniversary

New interest project book for Cadettes and Seniors is published, stressing community service and career exploration in every badge

Girl Scouts continues to be the largest voluntary organization for girls in the world

1998 - Post Office issues a stamp honoring Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts

Over 2.5 million girls and 800,000 adult members

1999 - Thursday March 11, 1999, a new honorary troop is formed consisting of women members of Congress. The event "celebrated the fact that two-thirds of all the female members of Congress serving today are former Girl Scouts."

2000 - Daisy Program Revised, petals introduced

Brownie Program Revised

2001 - Junior Program Revised

Bronze Award for Junior Girl Scouts introduced, the highest award for Junior Girl Scouts

Independent Girl Scout are now called "Juliettes"

Cadette/Senior uniforms change from royal blue to khaki, light blue blouse for Cadettes, navy blue blouse for Seniors

2002 - 90th Anniversary of Girl Scouts

2007 - 95th Anniversary of Girl Scouts

updated by Katie Baron

 
     
 

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