HBU has some limited information about Canadian Scout uniforms. We notice several changes over time in the uniforms at the different level of Scouting. we notice both British and American influences. And we seem to note more changes than has bern the case in either American and British scouting. Our information at this time, however, is still very limited. Hopefully our Canadian readers will provide more information on the Canadian uniforms.
We have not yet develooed information on historic uniforms. The early uniforms, howvver, seem to be copies of British uniforms. Scouts Canada has introduced new uniform (2011). They were designed by the clothing company Joe Fresh and used input from a 5,000-member survey followed by extensive focus groups and market research. The new uniforms are a range of formal and informal attire including polo tees, yoga pants, hoodies, tech tees, baseball caps, and accessories. The new uniform items were intended to be mixed and matched according to the situation. There are also redesigned badges and crests. Speaking of, these patches will now be worn on the uniform sleeves—not on a sash. The new garments are made in cotton or hi-tech polyester fabrics that Scouts Canad reports are 'comfortable and quick-drying'. Steve Kent, Chief Commissioner and chair of the Board of Governors of Scouts Canada, says his organization and its members wanted something affordable, high-quality, and fashion-forward. He reports, "The uniform revitalization reflects the organization’s commitment to innovation and to meeting the changing needs and wants of its members and Canadian youth,” Kent says. “It’s been more than 20 years since the Scouts uniform was reviewed, and the vision was clear from the outset—the uniform had to reflect not only who Scouts were but also who Scouts are today.”
There are different uniforms for the different levels od Scouting. This was a eceuon taken early on so the older youth, boys at the time, would not feel like thaey were involved in an organization for younger children.
Cub like Scout uniforms have changed over time. We do not yet have, however, comprehensive information on Canadian Cub uniforms over time. The have only limited information for the various decades The 1950s: We have only limited information at this time. We do have some black and white photographs. Canadian Cubs in the 1950s had uniforms that look very much like English Cubs. We are not sure about the colors yet, but they may have been similar to English Cubs as well. The 1990s: Canadian cubs wear the traditional cub peaked hat worn by British cubs and initially cubs in many other countries. They also wear a kind of light grey pullover with darker grey long or short pants. The boys wearing short pants wear grey knee socks with distinctive green bands at the top. Some Cub and Scout groups diverge from the standard uniform or give speial attention to the uniform. The 7th Thornhill MYSA Wolf Cub Pack is one such group. The Cub uniform that all Cubs are required to wear consists of Cub uniform: beret with cub hat badge, shirt, badge sash, belt and buckle, shorts and knee socks (please note - track pants can be worn over the shorts to and from meetings during colder weather), garter tabs (keeps the knee socks up), cub neckerchief slide, money pouch, and Cub book (badge guide).
We have some limited information on Canadian Scout uniforms. We are not yet sure about early Canadian Scout uniforms. We suspect that they were the same as Brigtish Dcout uniforms. Scouts in the 1940s were still wearing the traditional lemon-squeezer hats (figure 1). Note the badge on the front. The uniform was a light colored shirt, dark short pants, and matching kneesocks. I'm not sure about the colors. The boys seen here during the 1940s are in full uniform, including the brimmed hat, the knee socks, the polished brown shoes, the neckerchiefs, and shirt insignia. The photo shows two boys with their duffle bags, one of which is has a penant suggesting the boys were from Montreal.
No information available yet.
We are just beginning to collect details about Canadian Scout and Cub garments. A French Canadian reader who was a Scout in the late 40s and early 50s writes, "When I was a boy, knee-socks were long enough to be pulled up like long stockings. I remembver well I did that when , in winter, I went each week at my scout meeting. It was easier to do that because the only alternative in winter in the 40s and 50s was knickers for boys until 12-13 years of age. There were no long pants for Cubs and younger Scouts at the time and it could be really cold."
Another Canadian reader writes, "I was in a Wolf Cub Pack and the 94th Toronto and Boy Scout Troop uniform / 87th Toronto The Arrow Head Troop. I am trying to find some information about the uniform. I want to find out why the Scout hats were called Stetsons because it is my understanding that Stetson never made the hats. The Beaver brown colour was supplied by the Biltmore Hat Co. Guelph Ontario Canada since 1917. The same hat for the mounties. The hats for the mounties are now a buff colour." [Hamon] We think this was because Stetson set the style anbd whoever made them, the hats were called Stetsons. Another reader has provided us some images of Cub pullovers worn over time. We notice
different styles and colors.
We have found some vintage Canadan Scout uniforms anbd uniform items. The vintages items provide detaols about uniform gaments that are not readily available in Sout snapshots and portraits. We can see the material and colors wjich are oftem not available in Scout photographs. One uniform was worn by a Scout in the 1st West Vancouver (St. Stephens) from the 1950s era. Included is a photo of the Scout (John) with the troop.
Hamon, Robert Hamon. E-mil message (May 28, 2012).
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