U.S. Boy Scout Book: Matching Mountains with the Boy Scout Uniform (1929)

Figure 1.--The title page illustration quotes the Chief Scout Executive who was James West, "The Uniform Identifies the Scout with Our Ourdoorsmen".

U.S. Boy Scout official Edward F. Reimer published an informative book, Matching Mountains with the Boy Scout Uniform. Edward Reimer was on the National Editorial Staff for the Boy Scouts of America. The title is based upon a poem by Sam Walter Foss. The book is loaded with information about Scouting and the Boy Scout uniform. As stated on the inside dust jacket flap, "This beautiful Book was the only work on the Uniform authorized by the Boy Scouts of America". This book is loaded with over a 100+ Photos and Color Illustrations. It Measures 5 in x 8 in and has over 190 pages. It was published by E. P. Dutton & Co., Inc in New York City during 1929.


The author has compiled a great deal of information with his exhaustive research on Scouting. He covers in great detail and with numerous photos and illustrations the history, romance, and the honor of the Official Boy Scout Uniform. Also covered is the history of the Badges, Insignia, Awards and Neckerchief. There is a wonderful fold out between pages 78 and 79 that details all the Merit Badges, Patrol Emblems, General Scout Insignia, Local Council Officials, National Council Officials and the Silver Buffalo. There is so much in this book. There are maps, songs, poems, original vintage photos, Color Illustrations, Illustrations of Boy Scout Uniforms from around the world, the Lone Scout Catechism, Chapter on Sea Scouting and so much more. There is one portion that details the life of John Peter Gabriel Muhlenberg and his decision to fight! The dust jacket has the same graphic design has the hard cover.


Edward Reimer was on the National Editorial Staff for the Boy Scouts of America. He was also a Chautaugua Lecturer and Executive Director of the Thirteen States. I think the later refers to the Chautagua movement.

Figure 2.--The caption reads, "Scouts Swinging Down the Street with Fife and Drums".

Foreign Scouts

While the book is primarily about American Scouts there is a full color section about the uniforms in amany different countries in 1929. Many other Scout also wore khaki uniforms, but several are more colorful. Blue seems to have been an especially popular color. American Scouts in one way had a different uniform than all other Scouts. The American Scouts were the only ones that wore mostly knockers rather than short pants.


The book has many quotations about both boys and Scouting. One such quotation explains the title. "Bring me men to match my mountains, Bring me men to match my plains." [Sam Walter Foss, "Coming Americans".]

The Uniform

As the title of the book suggests, the emphasis is on the Boy Scout Uniform. The author points out persons of importance who wear uniforms: soldier, sailor, engineer (I think he is referring to a locomotive engineer here), policeman, and band leader. The author states on the dusk jacket flap, "When a Boy Scout puts on his uniform, he expresses a feeling of power and pride. Now why is this so. Reimer of course goes on to explain why. We note that this concept, is one of the reasons that many in the South were against black boys participating in the Sout movement and in particular wearing uniforms. [Macleod, p. 214.] For details see the discission of American Scouting and race. This was an issue that the BSA was only beginning to address when this book was publishedd in 1929.

Figure 3.--The author provides a very detailed target chart in which he describes the official Boy Scout ranks and insignias. The author provided an image of an Eagle Scout to show how awards and insignias should be worn.

Target Chart

The author provides a very detailed target chart in which he describes the official Boy Scout ranks and insignias (figure 3).


Macleod, David I. Building Character in the American Boy: The Boy Scouts, YMCA, and Their Forerunners, 1870-1920 (The University of Wisconsin Press, 1983), 315p.

Christopher Wagner

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Created: August 5, 2002
Last updated: August 5, 2002