MARCH 12: The Girl Scouts are formed (1912)


You know those Thin Mint, Samoa, and Tagalong cookies your whole
family becomes obsessed with for three weeks out of the year? Did you know that they are the product of one
of the largest and longest running girls’ organization in U.S. history? That’s
right – the Girls Scouts are radical as fuck.


Source: Girl Scouts of the United States of America (x).

Although the headlines read that the Girl Scouts were
created on this day in 1912, the road to their formation was a lifelong journey
for founder Juliette Gordon Low. Born in Savannah, Georgia in 1860, Juliette was
raised on southern belle values; however, she routinely defied them throughout
her life by being active in charity work, enjoying hobbies such as woodwork and
metalworking, and even divorcing her husband later on in life. In 1911, Juliette
met Sir Robert Baden-Powell at a society party and was impressed with his
organization known as the Boy Scouts. After becoming close friends with
Baden-Powell and learning more about the “scouting movement,” Juliette was
inspired to make her own offshoot. After returning home to Savannah on March
12, 1912, Juliette made a phone call to her cousin Nina and famously said, “I’ve
got something for the girls of Savannah, and all America, and all the world,
and we’re going to start it tonight.”


Juliette Gordon Low pictured with a Girl Scout troop in 1913 (x).

While the Girl Scouts are obviously not a lesbian
or LGBT specific organization, its progressive roots and long history of supporting
the LGBT community has often made it a safe haven for lesbian, bisexual, and transgender
girls alike. Rumors about Juliette Gordon Low’s own sexual orientation (she and Agnes Baden-Powell, the wife of Boy Scouts founder Robert Baden-Powell, might have had a thing) were also rife during her lifetime, and so it
shouldn’t come as a surprise that a certain sense of progression and compassion
has been baked into the Girl Scouts organization. When it became public that
the Girl Scouts allowed trans girls into their ranks, the head of Girl Scouts
USA said, “Our position is not new. It conforms with our continuous commitment
to inclusivity.“ To learn more about the Girls Scouts’ history with the
LGBT community, check out the following articles:

CNN covers the Girl Scouts welcoming transgender girls

Gay Issues enter the World of Philanthropy 

The Girls Scouts’ allegedly radical feminist lesbian agenda