Sir Robert Stephenson Smyth Baden Powell of Gilwell

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Lord Robert Baden Powell of Gilwell
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Dimensions 55.2 cm × 43.8 cm ( 21 3⁄4 in ×  17 1⁄4 in)



Early Life

BP, or ‘Stephe’ as he was known as a child, was born in Paddington, London, on 22 February 1857. He was the eighth of 10 children of the Reverend Baden-Powell, a professor at Oxford University.

BP preferred the outdoors to the classroom and spent much of his time sketching wildlife in the woods around his school. His irrepressible personality infuriated and impressed his teachers in equal measure.

After school, he went into the army, where he led a distinguished career through posts in countries including India, Afghanistan, Malta and various parts of Africa. [1]

Military Achievements

Chief Scout of the World

BP wrote no less than 32 books, the earnings from which helped to pay for his Scouting travels. As with all his successors, he received no salary as Chief Scout. He received various honorary degrees and the freedom of a number of cities, along with 28 foreign orders and decorations and 19 foreign Scout awards.

In 1938, suffering ill-health, BP returned to Africa to live in semi-retirement in Nyeri, Kenya, where he died on 8 January 1941 at the age of 83. He is buried in a simple grave at Nyeri within sight of Mount Kenya. On his headstone are the words, 'Robert Baden-Powell, Chief Scout of the World' alongside Scout and Guide emblems. He was later commemorated in Westminster Abbey, London.

BP is remembered on Founder’s Day, which is celebrated on his birthday (22 February) each year. To this day Scouts continue to enjoy activities in the outdoors and live out BP’s ideas.

The Scouts Movement

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  • Ashanti Star (1895)
  • Matabele Campaign, British South Africa Company Medal (1896)
  • Queen's South Africa Medal (1899)
  • King's South Africa Medal ( 1902)
  • The Boy Scouts Association Silver Wolf
  • Boy Scouts of America Silver Buffalo Award (1926)
  • Boy Scouts International Committee Bronze Wolf (1935)
  • Grand Cross of the Order of Dannebrog, Denmark (1921)
  • Großes Dankabzeichen des ÖPB (1927)
  • Großes Ehrenzeichen der Republik am Bande (1931)
  • Goldene Gemse (1931)
  • Knight Grand Cross of the Order of Orange-Nassau (1932)
  • Member of the Order of Merit (1937)
  • Wateler Peace Prize (1937)
  • Knight Grand Cross of the Order of St Michael and St George
  • Knight Grand Cross of the Royal Victorian Order
  • Knight Commander of the Order of the Bath



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  1. C. (n.d.). Lord Baden-Powell. Retrieved May 10, 2017, from