The 1960 Jamboree celebrated the 50th Anniversary of Scouting in the USA, with an additional theme of “Onward for God and My Country”.
The Jamboree was held south of Colorado Springs, CO. Unlike previous Jamborees which had some infrastructure, a state park, with roads and some facilities, the Jamboree was on open range. Everything had to be constructed from scratch. The BSA poured hundreds of thousands of dollars into the site and the US Military's various engineering divisions built almost everything. The Jamboree was a celebration of the 50th Anniversary of Scouting and everyone wanted to be there.

The site wasn’t as remote as it originally seemed. About an hour from Denver, a days drive from Dallas, or the middle west. A day and a half from Los Angeles the site was perfect for touring. It was a long way from the east coast and the south, but again a train or motor coach trip with various stops for touring. About 5,000 scouts came by air, the Denver airport was not a major hub in 1960 but handled the traffic. There were all kinds of touring opportunities including Philmont only about three hours south. As in years past university dormitories, YMCA’s and even church basements open their door to visiting Scouts.

It was held on four square miles, 2500 acres of the Reverse Diamond Ranch near Colorado Springs, Colorado. It took two years to develop the site, it was previously open range. Salt Lake City, Albuquerque, the Rocky Mountains, the Denver Mint and the Air Force Academy were popular tours, depending on where the contingents were traveling from. Many troops visited Philmont and some hiked as part of their tour. The Jamboree had 56,000 registered Scouts with 200,000 visitors often overwhelming the facilities. The influx of visitors had been a concern at previous Jamborees but in 1960 the facilities were severely strained. Future Jamborees planning would have to develop plans to accommodate such a large volume of visitors.
Scout activities at the 1960 JamboreePlus the Denver Mint and the Colorado State Capitol, Gardern of the Goded, Pikes Peak.  Some eastern train tours visited Chicago
leaders passing the tourch
In many ways the Jamboree was the passing of the torch from one generation of Scouting Professionals and volunteers to another. Chief Scout Executive Joseph Brunton, a Scout Executive in the 1940’s took the reins of the BSA from Schuck, who had been on the National Staff at the 1937 Jamboree. Brunton was the first Chief Scout Executive to have been an Eagle Scout. So it was with many volunteers and scouting professionals that had been active for 20,30 even 40 years, a new group of leaders was taking over.

About Arthur Schuck. Schuck was one of the pioneers in Scouting. An early Scout Executive in Reading, Pa. Active in the WWW and elected Grand Lodge Chief in 1921. He went on the BSA Executive Staff as Director of Operations where he served under James E West for twenty years. In 1943 when West retired Schuck became the Scout Executive in Los Angeles, CA. One of the fastest growing councils in the country. With proven managerial experience in the home office and successful field management in L.A., Schuck was the perfect candidate for Chief Scout Executive in 1948. Under his guidance the modern Jamboree theme was developed and the BSA grew in all aspects of the program.
Giant Birthday Cake 



A giant birthday cake was part of one of the night arena shows. A torch was used to light the candles and then the torch was passed from Arthur Schuck to Joe Brunton in an impressive ceremony. Many veteran Scouters were present and the symbolism wasn’t lost on them.
boy scouts from overseas 
Scouts from overseas had become a Jamboree tradition, but they really turned out for the 50th Anniversary. Six hundred and fifty Scouts from over twenty two separate countries attended.  
Entrence to the 1960 Boy Scout Jamboree 

General Headquarters and the main entrance to the Jamboree was an impressive sight. Very tall flags from each state lined the perimeter with a welcome tent in the center.
 
Regional and National Scout leaders manned the welcome center. Scouting was on full display for everyone to see and the BSA put on a great show.

Below:
Unique, sometimes elaborate Gateways had become a Jamboree tradition. Every contingent wanted to have the biggest and most unique. Gateways took a lot of effort and most were outstanding.
boy scout gateways 
boy scout gateways
The Skill-o-Rama was becoming one of the most popular events at the Jamboree. For the 50th Anniversary contingents made an extra effort to show their skills. There was cheese from Wisconsin, buffalo bites from Texas, a solar panel that would roast a hot dog, musicians, hunter safety and all kinds of displays.
skill-o-rama1960 boy scouts jamboree arena showsPrevious Arena Shows had set a high standard, but 1960 was spectacular. The stage was huge, 6000 scouts served as actors in some pageants. The theme was The Spirit of America. 75,000 people saw one show.
stage at 1960 bsa jamboree 


As mentioned in the beginning the land the 1960 Jamboree was held on was range land. Years afterwards as the city of Colorado Springs expanded south the land would become Chapel Hill Mall, strip malls, fast food restaurants and subdivisions. Jamboree Rd. is a heavily traveled road, there is a plaque to the Jamboree behind the horse sculpture at the entrance to the Bridgegate area shops. (thanks Kelly Williams)

Below -

President Eisenhower attended. Marshall Matt Dillon of Gunsmoke, The Sons of the Pioneers and Roy Rogers kept with the western theme. Everyone loved the Lennon Sisters from the Lawrence Welk Show.
popular entertainers at 1960 bsa jamboree

As mentioned in the beginning the land the 1960 Jamboree was held on was range land. Years afterwards as the city of Colorado Springs expanded south the land would become Chapel Hill Mall, strip malls, fast food restaurants and subdivisions. Jamboree Rd. is a heavily traveled road, there is a plaque to the Jamboree behind the horse sculpture at the entrance to the Bridgegate area shops. (thanks Kelly Williams
 
Badges and Patches
 
1960 Boy Scout Jamboree common itemsEvery Scout received a badge, a neckerchief, ID card and baggage tag. This is the basic 1960 Jamboree set. Many collectors also add a jacket and leather emblem.
1960 boy scout jamboree pocket patches
Variations of the 1960 Jamboree 3" pocket patches
 
There are two varieties and a 1973-1977 reproduction, made by BSA. With 56,000 Scouts and 200,000 visitors the demand for badges was huge. The varieties are caused by BSA using different manufacturers.

There are two varieties of the 6” backpatch. Probably caused by two different manufacturers. Type B is much scarcer than A.
1960 boy scout nationajamboree pocket patches
In addition to the eagle detailing, Type A has distinct points in the white behind the eagle while Type B is more rounded. This may indicate a third manufacturer.
1960 leather boy scout pack patch1950 boy scout pack




The leather 4 1/2” “pack patch” introduced in 1957 was sold at the Trading Posts and would be available for many Jamboree’s in the future. The leather emblem was designed to be sewn on a backpack, but from my experience few were.
1960 Prototype
1960 prototype patch





Prototype exist for the 1960 pocket and hat patch. Prototypes are collectible but because of limited distribution, they are generally very scarce.

The prototype was made by manufacturer A. The details correspond to that manufacturers punch pattern. Colorado was eliminated on the production badge. A faint image is shown on the next to last page of the 1960 Jamboree souvenir booklet.
1960 prototype patch1960 prototype patch



(to the left-) Light gold, has border tags, white beneath the FDL red on the back. Thread from crown does not go over wings.

(to the right-) Brighter gold, no border tags, No white beneath the FDL, white on the back. Slightly larger crown thread goes over the wings.
identifying fake patches
At the 2010 National Jamboree a reunion was held for Scouters that had attended the 1960 Jamboree. These semi-official reunions, sometimes spontaneous events had been happening for several Jamborees. Under normal circumstances this might be called a reproduction, but in my opinion it was made by a knowledgeable person who wished ultimately to deceive others. The design is of the 1960 prototype rather than the 1960 standard issue. There is no lettering distinguishing the 2010 reunion from the 1960 National Jamboree. A similar patch exists with the design of the 1960 Anniversary Schiff patch, but it has the wording REUNION. The authentic 1960 prototype is rare, the fake has been sold on eBay as authentic. Thank Aaron Carlson for properly identifying it as a reproduction. It’s odd that the fakes haven’t surfaced in the past 12 years, although collectors may have them in their collections believing they are authentic.




Prototype hat patches
 
1960 bot scout jamboree promotional material


Promotion was still necessary but the Jamboree didn’t need to be explained. All Jamborees are appealing, but there is something special about attending a 50th event. Some of the pioneers of Scouting were still alive and attended.
 
1960 boy scout national convention manuals


BSA probably had more experience in feeding and housing 50,000 people in a makeshift camp for a week than anyone except possibly the US Army.
 
Organization and How To manuals had been under development since 1950. The BSA seemed to have it down to a science. It’s quite a project to have 56,000 scouts and 200,000+ visitors, in what previously had been open range.
1960 boy scout golden jamboree equipment manual

Elsewhere I stress the importance of proper uniforms. Jamboree paper is often of interest to collectors and historians. Besides seeing what’s available you can see prices. The 1960 pocket patch was .40, the jacket emblem $1.00 and the neckerchief $1.00. Collectors bemoan the fact that Jamboree items aren’t valuable, yet a 1960 PP usually sells for $5-$6.00. Not a bad return on a .40 investment.
1960 boy scout jamboree community strips 
Contingents wore their community and state strip. Some used a council strip. The trend towards unique Jamboree shoulder badges continued, especially in California. 
1960 boy scout national jamboree community strips 
page 1 of 4
 
Paul Myers Goshen, Indiana
gimogash@comcast.net