• seperator

GAR and BSA

I have never thought of the Grand Army of the Republic and the Boy Scouts of America together in the same thought. With this group however that has changed. Illustrated below left is a delegate’s medal from the Department of Wisconsin’s 63rd annual encampment held in Beloit in 1929. This medal features the Wisconsin Commander George H. Pounder’s portrait. During the Civil War he was a blacksmith with Co k of the Wisconsin 2nd Cavalry. 1929 was sixty-four years after the Civil War ended and the surviving GAR members were getting on in years with most being in their eighties. Many would have mobility problems and needed assistance. Here is were the second medal comes in. It is a five armed cross design used for many local WWI service medals. The reverse is blank except for the makers mark (Whitehead and Hoag, just like the GAR medal) so nothing on the medal indicates the reason it was issued. In this case fortunately someone attached this medal to a piece of 3×5 card on which is written “issued 1929 by G.A.R. to L. Raymer scout as Aid to C.W. Vets. At conv. At Beloit Wis.” This is the place a research project could begin, I would start looking in the Beloit newspapers from the time of the convention.

About Fred Borgmann

Retired from KP after nearly 31 years as new issues editor and the Standard Catalogs.
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