The planning and organization developed for the canceled 1935 Jamboree was built upon for 1937. Much of the engineering and layout was done and plans were made for an even bigger and better Jamboree in 1937. 26,000 Scouts would attend and it would be an opportunity for Scouts from all over the country to visit the capitol and tour the historic landmarks. The Jamboree design was changed from the Capitol Dome to the Washington Monument, but badges and neckerchiefs were about the same.

The 1937 Jamboree was unique, the city of Washington and surrounding historic sites was the attraction. Scouts would be touring rather than doing things in camp. Wonderful Arena Shows were planned and there were displays, Washington DC and the historic sights was the event.

 

1937 bsa jamboree
1937 Boy Scout National Jamboree


Most came by railroad, semi-locals came by motor coach. Overseas visitors usually came by ship with a very few arriving by air. The interstate highway system wasn’t build yet and motorcar travel was difficult.

1937 bsa jamboree attending baseball game

Scouts took in a major league baseball game, some with President Roosevelt.
 
Scouts visiting bureau of standards 1937Scouts visited the Bureau of Standards and most government buildings.
How strong does cable have to be to pass be approved?
Scouts visiting bureau of standards 1937
President Roosevelt seemed to be everywhere and was highly accessible to Scouts. Thousands met him.  
1937 bsa jambore and president Rosevelt 
1937 scouts visiting Arlington 
1937 BSA jamboree scouts in Washingtion DC 
Above - Visiting Arlington and laying a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown awakened patriotism in every scout.


Every department of the government was available to the Scouts. Senators and Congressmen held receptions for contingents from their districts. Many mingled freely throughout the camp and attended the Arena Show. J. Edgar Hoover personally lead some tours at FBI Headquarters. Scouts visited the House and Senate chambers, the Lincoln Memorial, the Washington Monument, Arlington, Mt Vernon, and all the historic sights.

Part of the Jamboree experience was to send the Scouts home with a good feeling and understanding that the American system was working and the future was bright.
1937 bsa jamboree activities 
The Arena Shows were another highlight of the Jamboree. They occurred during the day and at night with Stage lighting and fireworks the type of which most Scouts had never seen. Dignitaries visited the shows.
1937 bsa jamboree activities 
1937 scouts visting Naval academy
Sea Scouts took a cruise to the Naval Academy, toured the facilities and had lunch with the mid-ship men.
1937 bsa jamboree exibits
Large circus type tents sheltered the exhibits. Scouts toured them at leisure.
1937 Boys Live exhibit at jamboree
Boys Life Magazine had their own display tent. There was a stamp exhibit. SOSSI wasn’t yet formed.
1937 Boys Live exhibit at jamboree
 
 



1937 Patches and Neckerchiefs

The shoulder strips of 1935 were replaced with a shoulder hanger. There is an attachment that pierced the uniform. A Roman Numeral identifies the region. A letter identifies the subcamp, and a numeral, the troop. Staff camped in subcamps, but not by troop, the troop number was removed.





Red neckerchiefs were for “in camp” wear. Blue were for out of campsite wear. Scoutmasters kept the blue
neckerchief and gave them to scouts who had permission to leave the contingent camp site.
1937 BoyScout National Jamboree ID
Sea Scouts camped by Ships. They had their own separate camp by the water. They could fully participate in the Jamboree, but had boating and a trip to the Naval Academy separate from the Jamboree. Sea Scouts wore both the white and navy blue uniform, but the shoulder strip was only available in blue.

These items are considered the basic 1937 Jamboree collection. The difference between a good collection and a better or great collection are the other items that were available at the Jamboree.
1937 Boy Scout National Jamboree Patch
 
Authentic 1937, 3” badge. Two shades of gold in the starburst. Gauze backing. Rounded O’s. Most fakes have the sunburst points in a different position. Compare compass points in relationship to the position of the letters.
Fakes and Reproductions of the 1937 pocket badge 
 
Fake 1937 Boy Scouts National Jamboree Patch 1937 Boy Scout National Jamboree Fake
Gauze on back is different. Red starburst
between the S & C. On the real badge it
points to the C. 1980’s, Bates fake.
   
Fake B 1937 Boy Scouts National Jamboree Patch The J in Jamboree has a cross bar on top, the authentic badge does not. The top of the Washington Monument is left, not centered. Date unknown.

This badge has been laundered which simply means the faker hoped to make it look more authentic.  
   
 Fake C 1937 Boy Scouts National Jamboree Patch Lettering does not extend to the edges.

O’s are square not round. 1980’s, Bates Fake.

The gauze backing is wrong.  
   
Fake D 1937 Boy Scouts National Jamboree Patch  A good fake, starbursts are correct.
Circa earlier than 1965

But, only one line of water beneath
the Washingtonn Monument. 
Fake D 1937 Boy Scouts National Jamboree Patch  Patch is oversize almost 5” around with wide
felt border beyond the embroidery. 
page 5 of 5
 
Paul Myers Goshen, Indiana
gimogash@comcast.net