Happy Birthday, Girl Scouts! Reflecting on Our History

As we celebrate Girl Scouts’ 106th birthday, we acknowledge the creation of the very first troop in Savannah, GA.  Juliette Gordon “Daisy” Low invited a group of girls to a meeting and began teaching them the ten parts of the Law as they were stated at the time:  A Girl Scout is Honorable, Loyal, Useful, A Friend to All, Courteous, Pure, Kind to Animals, Obedient, Cheerful and Thrifty. Today, Girl Scouts take the lead in their homes, schools, and local communities in fidelity to these basic principles.

Daisy encouraged the girls to get outside and explore the outdoors, learn all about nature and be physically active, even creating a basketball court at her home so that girls could play freely in their own space. She donated her carriage house (what we would call a garage today) to serve as the first Girl Scout office. And to finance the books, patches and uniform pieces she deemed essential to Girl Scouting, she sold her pearls.

With boundless energy and an unfailing vision, our Founder advocated for girls. She refused to let her efforts be limited by her health, society’s expectations of girls and women or the word, “No.” Daisy’s fierce determination inspired others to carry on this important work, so that our Movement would grow from a handful of girls in her parlor in 1912 to more than 50 million alumnae a century later.

She extended her hand in sisterhood not only to her local community, but also to the world. After inviting Girl Guides and Girl Scouts to convene at our national training center, 26 countries around the globe sent delegates to Camp Edith Macy in 1926. Among the celebrations and folk dances, the delegates resolved to establish World Thinking Day, a tradition we uphold today. Daisy pushed for this conference as her final gift to the Movement, for she would pass away less than a year later.

While technology now connects people in a manner unthinkable in Daisy’s day, today’s girls grapple with the frantic pace of life and practically limitless choices for how to occupy their time. In the midst of this day-to-day frenzy, our Movement provides respite with a refreshing blend of outdoor fun, learning, sisterhood, and service opportunities. The “how” may have changed, but the “why” remains. Our Promise inspires all Girl Scouts to be honorable, helpful, service-minded and faithful to the Law.


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