eBay lot takes in the unknowing

Posted on June 22nd, 2014 in Fakes,Hobby Trends,Rank by ramore

Here’s the title of a recent offering on eBay (end of May, 2014)

***RARE*** Vintage Boy Eagle Scout Type 1 Or 2 Rank Patch Badge BSA Merit Award

With the following description:

This is an extremely rare vintage 1924 Eagle Scout rank patch that has been kept in excellent condition and is certainly a rare find! I’m not sure if this is a type 1 or 2 but either way it is an extremely rare patch! This patch is a collectors dream and is something that everyone desires but no everyone gets! Bid on it now to secure that you will be the next owner of this amazing patch that is part of scouting history!! Happy Bidding!!! Let me know if you have any question!

And here’s a picture of the listing and patch:

But rather than be an authentic first issue Eagle patch, it is from the modern BSA issued commemorative Eagle patch display.

Now the history of avarice and greed are not new to our hobby. At one level, one can reach more collectors more quickly than ever before but at another level frauds can be found out more quickly. Moral of the story: buy from reputable dealers who know the patches (and that really is fewer than many realize). Also, if it seems too good to be true, it probably is.


This seller is back now listing this as:

***RARE***Vintage Eagle Scout Rank Boy Scout Patch 1924 – 1932

with this description:

This eagle rank is an extremely rare find and has been passed down from my grandpa’s collection! He had it displayed and sewn onto a navy blue felt material years ago and this is how I got it from him. This is a patch is in amazing condition compared to others which is really hard to find and is a collectors dream! I have to start getting rid of his collection and this one must go! Let me know if you have any questions that I can help you with and make sure you get this for your collection today!!! Thank you!!

and here’s the picture:



I see that someone did get taken in. Bought it. Paid for it. Received it and then when pointing out that it was the modern fake/repro and tried to return it the seller tried to charge a $125 re-stocking fee. What a scam!


Cool Quartermaster Card

Posted on August 19th, 2013 in Rank by ramore

Eagle Scout memorabilia collectors, lead by Terry Grove, have both documented and driven up the interest in Eagle Scout certificates. As Terry pointed out at an ISCA Dallas National Trade-o-ree, the Eagle Scout certificates and national letter maybe the only item every Eagle Scout received. Well in today’s eBay surfing I saw a card, rarer than the Eagle, that I seldom see. Its the comparable card for Quartermaster.

Sea Scouts are the oldest program in Scouting starting in 1913 (now its 100th anniversary). The Quartermaster is their highest award and is much rarer than Eagle. My guess, and I don’t think I’ve seen them, there probably is a whole series of these cards like Eagle Scout. I find this kind of ephemera as interesting as patches and maybe more so as it documents the history. Very neat piece, IMHO.

For Your Information by Paul Myers in ASTA


Senior collector Paul Myers of Goshen, IN was at the recent Calumet Council Memorial Day Trade-o-ree. Paul is a former editor of the Trader magazine in the 1960s. In the 1990s he wrote a regular column for ASTA, the America Scout Traders Association, which merged with NSCA to form ISCA the national group today. At the TOR Paul was handing out a compilation of the articles he wrote for ASTA. It is now contained in a PDF below. It covers over 75 topics of Scouting collectibles. Not in depth necessarily but my guess is that even veteran collectors will learn something knew from going through these pages.

The topics include:

  • Amaquonsippi trail patches
  • US Grant Pilgrimage patches
  • Lincoln Pilgrimage patches
  • Contest medals
  • Henderson Award System
  • Belt Stencils
  • Colored Background Service Stars
  • BSA Anniversary Week
  • Ribbon Pin Bars
  • 100% Duty
  • Standard Church Troop Bars
  • Original Twelve Regions
  • OA Chapter Flaps
  • Early Registration Cards
  • Scout Emergency Units
  • Recruiter Strips
  • Scout Diaries
  • Boy Rangers of America
  • District Badges
  • Region 7 Hoe Down
  • Sweater, swim suit, hat and jacket badges
  • Veteran Emblems
  • Explorer Top Awards
  • Presidents Awards & Quality Unit
  • SeniorScout Titles
  • Civic Service
  • Overseas Travel Badges
  • Service Library
  • WW 1 War Service Medals
  • National Service Camps
  • Boy Scout Bands
  • Tenure in Scout Camp
  • Service Troops
  • Jamboree Staff Positions
  • Jamboree Participation Awards
  • Jamboree Contingent items
  • Jamboree Shoulder Identification
  • 1950 Jamboree Prototypes
  • Variations in Jamboree Patches and Neckerchiefs
  • Jamboree Region Items
  • Strengthen the Arm of Liberty Program
  • Take Me Home Folders
  • Scout Straight Knives
  • Scoutmaster’s Key
  • Cub Scouting
  • First Class Hat Pins
  • Patrol Identification
  • Folding Pocket Knives
  • OA Chapter Badges
  • Scout Rings
  • Pin Back Buttons
  • State Strips
  • Early Camp Honor Societies
  • Philadelphia District Badges
  • Region Standard Camp Badges
  • Philmont Contingent Patches
  • Merit Badges
  • Boycraft Co. Booklets
  • 10 Year Program Award
  • Sea Scout Ships

Boy Scout Memorabilia Information

Re-Cataloging Eagle Patches

Posted on January 18th, 2012 in Insignia,Rank by ramore

With UPDATE as of 6:35pm CST 1/18/2012 – see below – new file from Terry

From Terry Grove,

Ron Oslin, Jim Erikson and I just finished an amazing day of comparing and sharing about Eagle patches.  This was a follow up to the “summit” we had in Philadelphia a couple months ago.

The new list splits the old Type 2 cut edge patches into two types

  • Type 2 – silk thread
  • Type 3 – cotton thread

We also have identified cloth used from 1924 through 1955.  The cloth with cut edge is clearly different and the patches have been embroidered unto these materials.  These materials are identified as –

  • pre-depression
  • heavyweight with printing on the back
  • depression cloth with printing on the back
  • heavyweight cloth without printing on back
  • lightweight without printing on back
  • fine twill
  • war cloth

Lastly, we have determined that there are five colors within the cut edge patches;

  • tan
  • olive
  • green
  • white
  • blue

The rolled edge patches are pretty straight-forward.

I am attachingour proposed new listing of Eagle Scout patches for your review and comments. (ED: We’ll post this at the bottom)

Our plan is to roll this out at the Dallas TOR.  Then print it in the ISCA Journal with a first article in March and then a second article in June.

Finally, the list will be included in the rewrite of my Eagle book which will be published in time for NOAC 2012.

So we have plenty of time to tweak the work and make sure we have all the pieces identified.

Terry is hosting a session at the ISCA Dallas TOR this coming weekend. You can e-mail Terry here or visit his web-site.

Eagle Scout Pocket Patches 2003

UPDATE – NEW FILE (old one deleted as this replaces 6:35pm CST 1/18/2012)  Eagle Scout Pocket Patches – NUMBERED SYSTEM

He’s also working on the Eagle Scout knots. Again from Terry:

As you know I am working on rewriting my book with new info to bring it up to date for 2012.

Tomorrow I am hosting a party to work on the Eagle patches. (ED: See the results above) I expect that I will be rolling out a new numbering system at the Dallas TOR.  I have spoken to you about this before.  I am excited.  I will be sharing with you the results of the conference and asking for your support.  I trust you will attend my workshop in Dallas.

I am also working on the Eagle knots.  I am working with Gary Whitman out of Texas.  He has done a yeoman’s job in identifying all knots and knot devices.  My interest is in the Eagle knots only for the book.

The reason I am writing is to ask a huge favor.  I am noticing that you are placing Eagle Knots on eBay.  Therefore you must have a bunch of them in stock.  My favor is this, would you please put all your Eagle knots in one place and either send them to me to look over as I work on the knots OR bring them with you to Dallas and allow me to work through them there.

I need some knots and thus would purchase whatever I need out of your pieces.  I would also like to see them to make sure that we have covered all the different types and variations.

I know it is a lot to ask and much trust, but I am hoping our years of friendship will allow you to make a decision to help in one way or other that I have suggested.

I am attaching a couple excel spread sheets to show you the work that I am doing.  It will give you an idea of the many varieties.

Knot Boards – 1

Knot Boards – 2

If you are interested in this topic and want to provide input, contact Terry. He’ll enjoy hearing from you as he wants to make this the best. (And as an aside, if you don’t agree with Terry, let him know!)


Grove on Eagle Scout History

Posted on October 18th, 2011 in Hobby Trends,Podcasts,Rank,Trade-o-rees by ramore

At this year’s ISCA Dallas Trade-o-ree Terry Grove presented one of the educational sessions on his research into Eagle Scout paper – letters, certificates, membership cards and more. We worked with Terry to record the session but have been struggling with YouTube time limits. YouTube’s now authorized us to post long form videos so here’s the both parts of Terry’s session. As an aside, these educational sessions are one of the great features of the Dallas TOR. Held at the end of January, TOR sponsors and hosts Ron Aldridge and Dave Thomas make sure folks have a good time. IMHO it is THE annual national show.


2011 ISCA Meeting presentation on Eagle Scout memorabilia — Part 1

Here’s the 2nd part:

Eagle Scout memorabilia presentation at 2011 ISCA Meeting — Part 2

Oakland Area Council K of D Eagle Pin

Posted on September 12th, 2011 in Insignia,Rank by ramore

The internet is helping the hobby slowly but surely. I just fielded a call with collector Gary Ives. He’s on the hunt for a variety of the Harmon Foundation Scholarship Award pin for Eagle Scouts. He’s put up a web-site on Eagle pins (click on the menu that says “Eagle Scout Pins). The pin he’s looking for was issued from 1927 – 1931 (5 years) with 52 awarded a year for a total of 260 making it one of the rarest Eagle pins issued.

What was neat was in going through his site I saw a pin we’ve had but not really known who issued it.

As his site points out it is for the Order of the Oh-hit-e-kah pin which Kelly Williams informed him was an early Eagle recognition program like the Knights of Dunamis in Oakland Area Council (CA) circa 1926-1929. Now we can post this information, share it and learn. Neat!

The Incredible Disappearing Insignia

Posted on September 7th, 2011 in Hobby Trends,Insignia,Rank by ramore

Or sub-titled “Where have all the great rank insignia gone?”

Yesterday I fielded two separate e-mails from very senior collectors about early rank insignia. One was about a Type-3 Life patch (the red knot with HOR red embroidery circa 1919) and the other was about an early Tenderfoot Achievement 2 patch (this was the rank program for disabled Scouts in the 1930s-1940s).

My responses to each separately was the same but different. That is, these are incredibly rare and seldom seen patches. And that their values are understated in the current market precisely because they’re not seen. These can be found for less than their scarcity would indicate but even if you have an open checkbook you can’t find them when you want them. Go figure. For the first, the T-3 Life (and we’re using Paul Myers’ book on Rank Insignia in Color for catalog numbers), we’ve NEVER had one come through in the collections we’ve handled!

In the random rumblings in my head as this discontinuity rattles around I’m thinking there are several pieces/examples of Scout insignia memorabilia that come to mind that are not seen these days. Here’s some of what’s on my list:

  • Type 3-Life (red knot, HOR red)
  • Veteran patches 15yrs and above on SS white or blue
  • Life with yellow knot outside of heart on SS blue or especially SS white
  • Rover Rambler pin (do collectors even know what this is?)
  • Type 1 Tenderfoot (yes this is the lowest rank but originally the rank was represented by a pin. The patch did not come out until 1924 and the design was quickly changed).
  • Tenderfoot Patrol Leader Bugler or T’foot Patrol Leader Scribe (basically a Scout had both positions, PL & bugler or scribe, and their rank was Tenderfoot). Paul taunts us by showing one of these on the cover of his reference work.

What’s on yours?

Note, I didn’t put Type 1 Eagle (the 1924 WJ) or Eagle on Sea Scout blue or the much rarer Sea Scout white. The first patch can bring $10,000 – $15,000 alone. The first Eagle on SSwhite can be $1,500 – $5,000 depending upon condition. The thing is, these patches DO turn up from time to time (say once every few years) but not the pieces on the list above, IMHO.

Update: Here are some sleeper, i.e. rarer than folks realize, issues that you CAN find:

  • The six ranks on fine twill (used during the later part of WW2 say 1943-1945 when the heavier khaki was used for the military). The lower ranks seem to be harder to find than the higher ones.
  • The 2nd Class and Star of the 1980’s series ranks when the badges were bordered and had colored cloth back ground (green on the 2nd Class, blue on the Star) with HOR stitching in the yellow field.
  • Air Scout ‘Explorer’ ranks followed by the no words Air Scout ranks.
  • The thin knot Eagle from the 1960s (Type 5)



Off and running – 100th Anniverary Patches Ramping Up

Posted on February 8th, 2010 in Camps,CSP,Hobby News,Hobby Trends,Insignia,Jamborees,JSP,OA,Rank by ramore

Last week I was at my Scout office for a meeting and stopped by the trading post. They have the new boy rank patches out commerating the 100th anniversary year of the BSA. I think these are neat but the quality control is poor. There are at least three major varieties in this group alone. Some appear to have been made by the BSA. Others have ‘Made in China’ stickers on the back. The latter is a separate sore point but we’ll leave that for another blog. Anyway, variety collectors are going to have a field day figuring these out. I’m told there’s an Eagle patch as well but I’ve not seen it. I’ve also been told that Scout shops are to have returned their inventory of the regular items so as to be replaced with these 2010 pieces.

Then Destry and I went to the Indy TOR this past weekend. Their hospitality was great as always (except for the 9″ of snow.) Several councils now have out 2010 patches. That got me asking around how many items do you think we’ll have for the 100th anniversary? By “items” I mean regular issue pieces – CSPs, JSPs, OA items. I’m figuring it will be up to 5,000. Could be more. And this is not counting camp and camporee items or Jamboree staff items. One could spend a lifetime just to collect this year. Also, I was hearing quotes for “rare, limited edition” varieties at huge prices. Councils and lodges could kill a good thing. If you know of some egregious abuses, please pass on the comment. Thanks.

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