Saturday, March 17, 2012

Sepia Saturday #117 - Scouts - Saluting Grandpa Howard Wilson

Howard M. Wilson ca 1920
In this month celebrating the 100th anniversary of  Girl Scouts what better time for Sepia Saturday to have a weekly theme about "scouts."  In my childhood in Mt. Vernon, IL, I spent a number of years first as a Brownie then as a Girl Scout, but I realized that, sadly, I have no pictures of those wonderful years I spent with my friends in all those great activities that taught us young women many important life lessons.  I don't even have the badges I earned,  I don't know what ever happened to them.  

I do, however,  have this blurry photograph of my paternal grandfather, Howard Mathis Wilson in some type of scout uniform. Grandpa was born  12 Apr 1909 in Bonnie, Jefferson County, IL so I'm guessing this picture would have been taken about 1919-1920.  I don't have any information about Grandpa's scouting experience, but he looks quite serious and is using the proper three finger salute.

Incidentally, my youngest son spent a few years in Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts and enjoyed all the experiences the Scouts offered, but he went on to other activities.  His oldest son who is seven is enjoying his first year of Cub Scouts and my youngest grandson, age four, tags along on many of the activities.  I have saved all of my son's badges in hopes that my grandsons might want them someday.

For more scouting stories and adventures check out this week's Sepia Saturday.


  1. Your grandfather's posture looks very military. I doubt that today's scouts look so serious and military.

  2. That’s a picture to treasure indeed. Yes you must hold on to those badges. How sad that you don’t have your own. I don’t have any because I wasn’t in any of these noble organisations, although my mother and daughter were.

  3. I'll say he looks serious. Bet he was a great scout. It's wonderful to hear of all the generations of scouting in your family even the little 4 year old tagging along. The traditions continue.

  4. Replies
    1. What a wonderful photo. I wonder if he was getting a huge award or something when it was taken.

      Kathy M.

  5. Howard obviously took his scouting seriously.

  6. I've been surprised by the number of people with OLD photos of scouts in the family and equally surprised at the number of us who were scouts and yet have no pictures. I'm glad you have this photo and are saving those badges. I've seen old badges for sale on eBay, but it's difficult to see ones like mine described as "vintage." Hrmph~

  7. Fantastic photo! Funny and sort of sad commentary about the can find entire badges and vests on ebay. I have been trying to collect the missing pieces of my insignia and the local GS council referred me there....since what I need is considered "retired" aka vintage. Sigh, when did that happen?

  8. It might be a blurry photograph, but that somehow adds to the atmosphere.

  9. Great photo. I only wish there had been photos of you in brownies and girl scouts, but perhaps you were just to busy having a good time and learning things.

  10. Though there is a military aspect to scouting, and it was one reason why I gave up as a cub scout, your grandfather demonstrates the part I liked. His determined salute says more about scouting as a moral and ethical compass. A real treasure.


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