CONGRESSIONAL REPORT IN SUPPORT OF ACT TO INCORPORATE BOY SCOUTS OF AMERICA
House Report No. 130. Sixty-Fourth Congress
February 7, 1916. –Referred to the House Calendar and ordered to be printed.
Mr. Gard, from the Committee on the Judiciary, submitting the following report (to accompany H. R. 735).
The Committee on the Judiciary, to whom was referred the bill (H. R. 735) to incorporate the Boy Scouts of America and to project its insignia, having carefully considered the same, beg leave to submit the following report with the recommendation that the bill do pass.
The Boy Scout movement is not one seeking to promote a juvenile military system, but is intended to supplement and enlarge established modern educational facilities in activities in the great and healthful out of doors where may be the netter developed physical strength and endurance, self-reliance, and the powers of initiative and resourcefulness, all for the purpose of establishing through the boys of to-day the very highest type if American citizenship.
It tends to conserve to moral, intellectual, and physical life of the coming generation, and in its immediate results does much to reduce the problem of juvenile delinquency in the cities. The movement has grown rapidly during the past few years, until it is now organized in practically every community of 4,000 inhabitants and over and in many smaller communities of the United States. During the past two years Boy Scouts have demonstrated the value of the education and training they received as an auxiliary force in the maintenance of public order and in the administration of fist-aid and practical assistance in times of great public emergencies. Their services on the occasion of the Ohio floods, at the Gettysburg reunion, in the inaugural ceremonies of President Wilson, and at the recent memorable reunion of the Grand Army of the Republic in Washington attracted Nationwide attention and received general commendation, particularly from the American National Red Cross and the officials of the Federal and State Governments. The importance and magnitude of its work is such as entitle it to recognition and its work and insignia to protection by Federal incorporation.
The Scout scheme is based on the methods involved in educating the boy, it is a scheme of placing the boy on honor in addition to requiring him to live up to a standard or code of laws which insure development of character along proper lines, it requires him to study in order to pass certain tests of qualification. The passing of these various tests is recognized by the award of appropriate badges or medals and insignia.
If any boy can secure these badges without meeting the required tests, the badges will soon be meaningless, and one of the leading features of the Scout program will be lost. Likewise, with the uniform which designates the Scout. At the present time this is protected by the use of insignia–a seal woven or stamped into the cloth. All of these various badges and insignia are at present protected by the patent laws, but under the patent laws such protection is available for a limited period only. The passing by Congress of this bill will, it is believe, provide the organization with proper protection for its distinctive insignia, the integrity of which is essential to the maintenance of the movement, and protect it from those who are seeking to profit b the good repute and high standing and popularity of the Scout movement by imitating it in name alone.
The identical language of this bill was incorporated in the bill with amendments thereto, known as H. R. 19907, which was reported from the Committee on the Judiciary on February 3, 1915, with a recommendation that it, as so amended, do pass.