Scout history in German-speaking countries

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The scout movement reached the German-speaking area shortly after it was founded in England by Robert Baden-Powell in 1907. In almost all German-speaking countries, before the First World War, scout groups were formed, which came together in different associations, often separated by gender and denomination.

While in most countries the scout associations continued to develop evenly on the basis of Scouting for Boys and closely based on the English training system until the Second World War , the German scouting (and to a lesser extent also the Austrian) struck through contact with the Wandervogel movement a special way: The scout associations became part of the youth movement , they merged the forms of English scoutism with those of the wandering bird. As a result, different renewal movements developed within the fractions, which led to the splitting off and unification of various smaller and larger fractions. The so-called bündische youth with a variety of Pathfinder, Wandervogel and Young shaft -Bünden emerged.

After the so-called seizure of power in Germany in 1933 and 1934, the interdenominational scout associations were dissolved and their members transferred to the Hitler Youth . The denominational associations were able to last a little longer with severe restrictions on their work, but were also banned by the Gestapo by 1938 at the latest . During the Second World War , the same fate befell the scout associations in the countries occupied by the German Reich .

After the Second World War, the scout associations were rebuilt in all countries. Only in the Soviet occupation zone and later in the German Democratic Republic was the scouting work still prohibited. The only youth association allowed was the Free German Youth , whose children's organization, the pioneer organization Ernst Thälmann , used individual elements of the scout method.

The scout associations almost always joined together to form umbrella organizations or general organizations in order to enable all scouts to become members of the World Organization of the Scout Movement (WOSM) and World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS). Nevertheless, after the initial build-up phase in the Federal Republic of Germany, the scouting movement began to become increasingly fragmented, first again in the conflict between scoutist vs. to be firmly established in an alliance, later intensified in the dispute between traditional and progressive boy scouts, as many associations, stimulated by the change in social values towards the end of the 1960s, also become politically active.

In the last third of the 20th century, most boy and girl scout associations opened up for the opposite sex or merged with similarly oriented groups to form co-educational associations.

After the political change in the GDR, scout groups were also established there from 1990 onwards. To a large extent, they were inspired by the West German associations or were based on them. Most of the new groups soon joined these groups, but in some areas independent associations also emerged. Overall, the number and size of the boy scout groups in eastern Germany is still significantly smaller than in comparable western German areas.

At about the same time as the expansion into the east of Germany, various free church scout associations emerged, some of which developed rapidly. With the Royal Rangers and the Christian Boy Scouts and Boy Scouts of the Advent Youth, they also include two international associations with groups in Austria and Switzerland.


From the foundation to 1918

Maximilian Bayer , one of the founders of the boy scout movement in Germany (1916)

The first group of wandering birds was created in Berlin in 1896 .

Boy Scouts of the Christian Young Men Association prior to World War I on an early color photograph

In 1908 Alexander Lion got to know the scout movement on a trip to England . After exchanging letters with Baden-Powell , he visited London in 1909. In the same year, the first edition of “The Pathfinder Book” appeared, the German broadcast of “ Scouting for Boys ” by Alexander Lion with the assistance of Maximilian Bayer . Later editions from 1911 onwards were titled "Young Germany's Pathfinder Book". A group of the adult wandering bird met Baden-Powell and English boy scouts in England. The first German scout groups were founded in Bavaria (Munich, Bamberg).

In 1910 a delegation from the Evangelical Young Men’s Association traveled to England to learn about the scout movement, among other things. As a result, the first Protestant scout groups in the YMCA emerged in Bavaria , Württemberg and Saxony , calling themselves Christian scouts .

In 1911, the German Scout Association was founded in Berlin as the first German scout organization . Maximilian Bayer was elected Reichsfeldmeister. The first German girl scout groups emerged in Hamburg, Frankfurt, Darmstadt, Berlin and Metz.

In 1912 the German Scout Association for young girls was founded. From 1913 it was called the Association of German Girl Scouts . In 1913 Elise von Hopffgarten published the "Boy Scout Book for Young Girls".

Various academic associations and groups of migrating birds met on the Hoher Meissner in 1913 for the First Freideutschen Jugendtag (Free German Youth Day) and formed the Freideutschen Jugend . There they coined the so-called Meißner formula .

In 1914 and 1915, German scouts did military aid, for example in Brussels .

In 1916, scouting was included in pre-military education for young people in Germany.

During the First World War , most of the scout leaders were drafted into the military. Therefore some of the scout groups disintegrated, in others young people took over the leadership. The content and structures of the scout work changed significantly as a result.

From 1918 to 1945

Colonial Scouts in Cairo (1931)

When the German Boy Scout Association was to be rebuilt from 1919 onwards, there were arguments between three different groups:

  • the older leaders of the pre-war period who wanted to restore the DPB in its old form,
  • the younger leaders who met with migratory birds during their war effort and who wanted to bring both the experience of the front as well as the migratory bird spirit into the work
  • and the youthful leaders who were active during World War I and did not want to give up their positions.

Somewhat abbreviated it is spoken of the “break-in” of the youth movement into the German Scout Association. The result was the emergence and splitting off of various renewal movements, including the New Scouts and the Ring Scouts . By 1933, a large number of different scout associations were created, which in terms of content ranged from the pre-military scouting of the pre-war DPB to the groups that were strongly influenced by the Wandervogel and which politically covered almost the entire spectrum of the Weimar Republic .

In 1919, the Dansk Spejderkorps Sydslesvig (DSS), which still exists today, was established in northern Germany as a scout association for the Danish minority in southern Schleswig.

In 1920, with the Tatgemeinschaft Sachsen , a youth-driven renewal movement also arose among the Christian scouts. In 1921 the individual groups of Christian Scouts came together in Neudietendorf to form the Christian Scouts (CP). In 1922, Protestant girl scouts founded the Tatgemeinschaft Christian pathfinderinnen (TCP - from 1945 BCP ), whose work closely followed the Tatgemeinschaft Sachsen .

From 1923 onwards, the Storm Troop Boy Scouts emerged within the alcohol-free movement of the International Good Templar Order. They were heavily influenced by Wandervogel and New Scouts and maintained intensive contacts with other scout groups in the IOGT in Scandinavia and the Netherlands . At times there were efforts to found a transnational Northern European scout association within the IOGT. Due to later political developments, this could not be implemented.

In 1924, German scouts took part in a world jamboree in Copenhagen for the first time .

Salvation Army Girl Scouts in Berlin (1931)

In 1926, the Evangelical Girl Scout Association was founded within the Evangelical Reich Association of Female Youth ( Burckhardthaus ) (EMP), which was strongly oriented towards Scandinavian YMCA scouts.

The Greater German Scout Association , the Altwandervogel, the German Young Society and the Wandervogel, the German Youth Association , joined forces in the same year to form the Association of Wandering Birds and Scouts (BdWuP); after the connection of other leagues, it changed its name to Deutsche Freischar (DF) in 1927 .

In 1928 the first Catholic scout groups were founded within the Catholic Young Men Association .

In 1929 the German Scout Association was established as the umbrella organization of several interdenominational scout associations and the CP, to represent the German scout associations at home and abroad.

In 1929, the Catholic scout groups in Altenberg merged to form the German Scout Association Saint Georg (DPSG).

Within the German Freischar group, tusk - Eberhard Koebel founded "a secret conspiracy": the German Autonomous Youth Association from November 1, 1929 (dj.1.11). In 1930 dj.1.11 became self-employed after Tusk's exclusion from the German Freischar. A connection from dj.1.11 to the DPB only lasted for a short time.

In 1931, schoolgirls founded the Association of Catholic Girl Scouts in Saarbrücken . The Catholic Hildegardis scouts came into being in Aachen in 1932 .

In 1933, after the seizure of power, various scout and wandering bird associations, including the DPB and the DF, merged to form the Greater German Confederation . It was intended to secure the existence of free youth leagues alongside the Hitler Youth . That is why the federal leadership committed itself several times to National Socialism . After almost three months, the Greater German Confederation was dissolved by the “youth leader of the German Reich” Baldur von Schirach .

1933 and 1934 were under the so-called Gleichschaltung all Scout Unions, with the exception of the great confessional frets (CP, TCP, DPSG) dissolved and incorporated their members in the Hitler Youth. In order to avoid this compulsory integration, some of the frets dissolved beforehand. Others volunteered to join the Hitler Youth even before the relevant orders were issued.

An example of the conflicting behavior of many scout associations and the uncertainties towards the Nazi regime is the letter of allegiance and petition from the Reichsschaft Deutscher scouts to Adolf Hitler of June 19, 1933 , with which this association wanted to maintain its independence alongside the Hitler Youth:
We welcome the appointment of Baldur von Schirach, made by Reich Chancellor Adolf Hitler, as 'youth leader of the German Reich' as ​​well as the efforts to reorganize youth education in the new Germany according to uniform principles, because this is the only guarantee for education in the new image of man nationally conscious, socialist community people seem to exist within all strata of youth.
We are addressing this petition to the Reich Chancellor, because his minister Dr. Goebbels's expressed opinion: - 'Unity should not become monotonous! It would do violence to the colors of the German character if one wanted to make them uniform. As uniform as we want to be in the principles, we want to be polyform in the nuances' - a solution in this sense promises. (Federal Leader Frank Iden)
The Reichsschaft Deutscher Pfadfinder was banned on May 26, 1934.

In 1937 the Gestapo forbade the Christian Scouting and the Tatgemeinschaft Christian Boy Scouts to continue working . In the end, both groups consisted only of adults (see Cross Scouts ).

In 1938 the DPSG was finally banned and the Sankt Georg community was founded to continue its work .

In 1942, evangelical girl scouts founded the Casteller Ring, a direct successor to the community of Christian girl scouts . In 1945, the Casteller Ring changed its name to the Union of Christian Girl Scouts (BCP).

Excursus: German scout associations abroad from the interwar period

After 1920, various scout associations emerged outside the German Reich and Austria within the German population, which were based on the German variety of scouting movement influenced by the youth movement. At the latest with the outbreak of the Second World War , these leagues dissolved again - with very rare exceptions.

Baltic states

The German scout groups, which were formed in the Baltic States before the First World War , joined the Latvian Scout Association after 1918 . In 1928 the German scouts in the Baltic states become independent in the German -Baltic Boy Scout Association . In 1931 he joined the German Boy Scout Association. Also in 1928 the Christian Scouting Association founds a Federal Scouting Association for Estonia - Latvia - Lithuania .

Alsace (France)

In Alsace , too , there was a League of Alsatian Scouts with headquarters in Strasbourg around 1935 .

Poland and Free City of Gdansk

In Poland , some German scout groups, which in 1926 Wandervogel groups emerged after 1918 German church youth in Poland merged. This was active until the outbreak of World War II in 1939. The German-Polish groups maintained contact with Reich German groups through the area of ​​the Free City of Danzig , through which they could enter the German Reich.

In the Free City of Danzig there were no independent scout associations, the groups belonged to the corresponding imperial German associations.

Romania, Banat and Transylvania

The German-speaking scouts in Romania were founded by the Banat student Karl Becker. In the winter semester of 1924/1925 in Freiburg im Breisgau he first came into contact with the groups of the German Scout Association and when he returned during the summer vacation of 1925, his idea of ​​founding his own scout groups found enthusiastic supporters among the older students at the secondary school in Timișoara .

This first group of scouts in the Banat grew quickly and soon found supporters in neighboring towns. Three years later, a boy scout group was founded in Bistritz in Transylvania , which closely followed the style and organizational form of the DPB in Germany. The boy scout lily and scout attire were adopted as an external sign . They also attended numerous meetings with the local migratory birds. Common trips, common singing meetings and common folk dance are also occupied. In Bistritz they moved into a home in the Fassbinder Tower together with the Wandervogel. There were also numerous meetings with friendly scout groups of the DPB from Germany.

Although there were also Romanian scout groups since 1912, contacts between them and the DPB in Romania were not desired for political reasons. Nevertheless, the Romanian-German scouts also took part in the national scout meeting in Hermannstadt (Sibiu) in 1932 and, despite the ban, in Kronstadt (Brașov) in 1936 .

At the end of 1935, most of the scout groups had to disband due to political pressure. Its members joined the German Youth Association in Romania (DJR), which was affiliated with the German People's Party in Romania under Alfred Bonfert . The scout groups in Bistritz joined the Southeast German Wandervogel as Horst , which was soon banned as well. In 1937 the Romanian Scout Association was transferred to the right-wing organization Straja Țării ("Guardian of the Country"), to which only ethnic Romanians were allowed to belong.

South America

In South America , between 1925 and 1935, German scout groups emerged in almost all of the larger German settlements, mostly in German schools. In the south of Brazil they joined together for a short time to form the German Scout Association of the Rio Grande do Sul . Most of these groups soon disbanded, a few still existed today within the corresponding national scout associations (for example in Santiago de Chile ).


As early as 1913, the first German scout groups were formed in what would later become Czechoslovakia , and from 1915 to 1917 they united to form the German-Bohemian Scout Corps. In 1922, a German scout association was founded again with the Sudeten German Boy Scouts Association. He worked closely with the Sudeten German Wandervogel in Czechoslovakia , but there were also close contacts with the Imperial German ring scouts. After the Sudetenland became part of the German Reich , the Reich Commissioner for Organizations banned all youth leagues in 1938 and transferred their members to the Hitler Youth.

From 1945 to the present

BDP federal symbol from the 1950s

As early as 1945, despite Allied bans in Germany, new scout groups were founded, some of them by "old scouts" from the period before 1933. Depending on the youth policy of the occupying powers, the groups called themselves scouts or gave themselves other names.

In December 1945, Alexander Lion radioed all former scout leaders to report to him. Individual scout groups were founded, which were treated differently by the military governments: they were supported in the US zone, they were banned in the French and Soviet zones, and in the British zone they were initially not allowed to call themselves scouts.

In 1947, the "Tübinger Bund" was established under license from the French military government, made up of groups founded by members of the " Sturmtrupp scouts ". It became a collecting basin for many returning Graubünden and later formed the state brands Südwürttemberg-Hohenzollern and Nordbaden in the BDP.

From May 4 to 6, 1948, a conference was held in Barsbüttel at the instigation of the British military government. This led to controversies between the re-established denominational scout associations and the interdenominational associations, which at that time called themselves "Free Scouts" and still merged at the conference to form the "Association of Free Scouts of Germany", from which the "Association of German Scouts" in Karlsruhe in December 1948 has been. In May 1949, Kajus Roller was elected national field master. Tensions between the Scoutist and Bundist lines arose early on in this union.

In the years up to 1949, the occupation authorities then allowed scouting in all three western zones and promoted it to varying degrees. The largest of the newly or re-established fraternities were:

  • BDP - Association of German Scouts (interdenominational)
  • BDPi - Association of German Girl Scouts (interdenominational)
  • DPB - German Scout Association (interdenominational), initially as the Association of German Youth from Berlin
  • DPSG - German Scouting Association Saint Georg (Catholic)
  • PSG - St. George's Scouts (Catholic)
  • CPD - Christian Scouting Germany (Protestant)
  • EMP - Evangelical Girl Scout Association (Protestant, not in Bavaria)
  • BCP - Association of Christian Girl Scouts (Protestant, only in Bavaria)

Thus the spectrum of the leagues essentially corresponded to that of the late Weimar Republic, only in the interdenominational area an attempt was made to collect all groups under one roof with the BDP. The fact that with the DPB a second large interdenominational scout union was formed was mainly due to the peculiarities of the four-power status of Berlin , the poor accessibility of Berlin from the western zones and personal differences between the newly emerging federal leaderships.

On October 1, 1949, the BDP, DPSG and CPD founded the Ring of German Scout Associations (RdP) as an umbrella organization in Altenburg . As a female counterpart, the Ring of German Scouting Associations (RDP) was created with BDPi, PSG, EMP and BCP as members.

The initiative to found the "Association of German Scouts" on 27./28. April 1949 went from the World Association of Girl Scouts (WAGGGS), none of the leaders had their roots in the pre-war youth movement. In the same year, the Ring of German Scout Association was founded, which was accepted into the Federal Youth Association in 1952.

In 1950 the German Federal Youth Association accepted the RdP as a member, the RDP followed in 1952. Also in 1950, the Ring of German Scout Associations became a member of the World Organization of the Scout Movement (WOSM). The Ring of German Girl Scout Associations was included in the WAGGGS, the female counterpart to the WOSM.

The centralistic efforts of the BDP in the 1950s to create a uniform federation led to considerable tension. In some cases, parts of entire national brands were withdrawn and new associations formed, such as the Free Scout Association Schleswig-Holstein in 1955, the Gray Rider Scout Association in Swabia in 1956, the Scout Association of Great Hunters in Northern Hesse in 1958 and the Northern Baden Scout Association in 1960 . So far it has been possible for the groups to come together voluntarily, they could join together and organize according to their different roots, allied or scoutistic, and accept membership in a union. The reorganization of the BDP meant that tribes and Gaue regional brands were administratively assigned to which they did not want to belong.

In 1956, the Bündische Scouting Association Berlin joined the BDP, and some groups joined the DPB.

Federal camp of the CPD near Fridingen (1960)

In 1961, Kajus Roller, the Federal Field Master of the BDP, resigned and was succeeded by Pastor Jochen Senft .

At the Meissner meeting in 1963, the "Arbeitsgemeinschaft Deutscher Pfadfinderbünde" (AG) was formed from the DPB, the Boy Scout Association, the Gray Rider Boy Scout Association, the Boy Scout Association of North Baden and later the Association of German Young Scientists , which led to the establishment of the Ring of Young Associations . The working group held talks with the BDP until 1966 with the aim of reunifying the interdenominational scout associations.

From around 1965, the change in social values also reached scout work. Many groups were looking for new methods and content. Most associations called for a co-educational orientation of the groups. The political neutrality of the scout movement, which supporters of the extra-parliamentary opposition described as being conservative in its effect, was highly controversial .

On March 19, 1966, the Ring of Young Bünde (RjB) was founded, an association of self-employed, independent and self-responsible scout and wandering bird associations with the purpose of representing their common interests to the outside world and promoting their connection with one another. The RjB and all the youth associations represented in it committed themselves to the basic declaration of the young associations on Meißner's day in 1963.

On October 21, 1967 the Association of German Old Scout Guilds (VDAPG) was founded.

Opposition regional associations formed the "Working Group" in the BDP in 1969/1970. The International Scout Office threatened to suspend the German scouts from the World Association WOSM and the ring partners therefore suspended the BDP from the ring.

In 1970 the first groups split off from the BDP because of increasing politicization, which was perceived as socialist infiltration, and founded their own scout associations, which a little later merged under the name of German Scouts eV . In 1971 the German Scout Association (DPB) merged with DP eV to form the German Scout Association (DPV). The DPB-Westmark and other leagues had also joined the DPV . The DPB resigned soon afterwards; the DPV then remained as an umbrella organization.

In 1971, after a narrowly lost board election, the “working group” left the BDP due to irreconcilable differences over the political orientation of the BDP and founded the Association of Scouts (BdP).

The World Association of the Scout Movement WOSM had signaled that it would no longer tolerate this violation of the principle of the international scout movement to be politically neutral. As a result, the ring of German scout associations dissolved in May 1971. With the DPSG, the BdP, which was split off from the BDP, and the Association of Christian Scouts and Boy Scouts (VCP), which was created through the merger of the three evangelical scout associations , the umbrella organization was re-established on January 1, 1973 as a ring of German scout associations . In a somewhat simplistic way, this process was the exclusion of the BDP from the international scouting movement. The two confessional associations preferred an interdenominational individual association instead of the DPV umbrella association as a partner. The new "Ring of German Scout Associations" was recognized by WOSM in 1973.

Singing Girl Scouts of the Christian Scouting Society in Germany

In 1973 the Association of Christian Scouts and Boy Scouts came into being through the merger of the Association of Christian Scouts, the Evangelical Girl Scout Association and the Christian Boy Scouts of Germany.

In 1976, the Association of German Scouts and the Association of Scouts merged to form the Association of Scouts and Scouts . With the re-founded Christian Scouting Association of Germany (CPD eV; split off from the VCP) and the Catholic Scouting Society of Europe (split off from the DPSG), two smaller denominational scout associations emerged, some of which rejected the reforms of the sixties and seventies in their associations of origin.

In 1981 Richard Breite founded the Christian Scouts Royal Rangers Germany in Bremen , which have their origins in the USA. Also in 1981, groups that had left the Union of Scouts and Boy Scouts (BdP) founded the Boy Scout Association of Bavaria, which was eventually renamed the Scout Association of World Travelers (PbW).

In 1982 the federal assemblies of the DPSG and PSG met together on questions of co-education. As a result, the PSG decided to remain an association only for girls and women.

Postage stamp from Deutsche Post AG for the centenary of the boy scout movement (2007)

In 1977–1989 the Union of Scouts and Boy Scouts and the German Scout Association negotiated unsuccessfully about a merger of the two largest interdenominational scout associations.

From 1990 on, scout groups were founded in the area of ​​the former GDR . This resulted in some independent scout associations, but most groups were founded by West German scout associations, which the groups then joined.

After 1995, there was also a growing tendency in Protestant scouting to found various smaller associations, most of which had a free church background. They included the Baptist Scouts (BPS), the Scouts of the Free Evangelical Churches (PdF), the Christian Scouts Royal Rangers (RR) and the Christian Scouts of the Advent Youth (CPA).

In 2010 the Association of Muslim Scouts and Girl Scouts in Germany was founded. In October 2018, it was admitted to the Ring of German Scout Associations and the Ring of German Scout Associations.


In 1927, scouts from Austria and Switzerland helped with clean-up work in Liechtenstein after a Rhine flood.

In 1931, at the request of the princely couple Franz I and Elsa von und zu Liechtenstein, scout groups were founded in Liechtenstein. Scouts from Austria and Switzerland supported the establishment of the groups.

In 1932 the scout groups merged to form the Princely Liechtenstein Scout Corps St. Georg (FLPK). The first groups of girl scouts were founded.

In 1933 the FLPK became a member of WOSM.

In 1948 the Liechtenstein Girl Scout Corps Santa Maria was accepted as a member by WAGGGS.

In 1989 the Boy Scout and Girl Scout Corps merged into one association, the Girl Scouts and Girl Scouts of Liechtenstein (PPL).


In 1914 the first scout groups were founded in Luxembourg.

In 1915 the first groups of girl scouts came into being in Luxembourg. During the First World War, scouts supported the Red Cross in caring for wounded soldiers.

In 1916 the non-denominational scout groups merged to form the Fédération Nationale des Eclaireurs du Luxembourg (FNEL).

In 1919 Catholic scout groups founded the Lëtzebuerger Scouten (Fédération Nationale des Scouts du Luxembourg - FNSL).

In 1928 the Association des Girl Guides Luxembourgeoises (AGGL) became a founding member of WAGGGS.

In 1938, Pierre Posing founded the Catholic Lëtzebuerger Guiden (Catholic Luxembourg Girl Guides).

In 1940 the German occupation authorities banned scouting work. Some scout leaders were taken to concentration camps because they continued to work underground.

In 1945, the Lëtzebuerger Scouten and the Fédération Nationale des Eclaireurs du Luxembourg founded the Luxembourg Boy Scouts Association (LBSA) as a common umbrella organization to enable joint membership in WOSM.

In 1966, the Fédération Nationale des Eclaireurs du Luxembourg opened to girls. Therefore in 1976 it changed its name to Fédération Nationale des Eclaireurs et Eclaireuses du Luxembourg .

In 1994 the Lëtzebuerger Scouten and the Lëtzebuerger Guiden merged to form the Lëtzebuerger Guiden a Scouten (Guides et Scouts du Luxembourg - LGS).

In April 2004 the Royal Rangers Luxembourg were founded, which were strongly influenced by the influences of the Royal Rangers Germany and whose leaders completed German training courses.


The first German-speaking boy scout groups in what is now Namibia came into being in Tsumeb in 1924 and in Windhoek in 1926. In April 1928 they joined forces in Omaruru to form the German Scout Association of South West Africa . Girls' groups were founded in Lüderitzbucht in 1932 .

After founding an NSDAP organization in South West Africa in 1932, they tried to integrate the boy scouts into the Hitler Youth , which they succeeded in April 1934. After the “Day of the German Youth” in July 1934, a National Socialist rally, the Hitler Youth was banned in South West Africa.

In 1935, with the approval of the authorities, a new scout association was founded with the German scouts from South West Africa . Its members were still allowed to wear the southwest with a black-white-red cockade, the association flag was a variant of the Reich War flag with a stylized camel thorn in place of the Prussian eagle. After a short time, the organization comprised 1200 boys and girls in thirteen local groups called Horsten and a marching band. In 1937 Heinz Anton Klein-Werner wrote the Südwesterlied for the boy scouts, and it is still the official anthem of the German Boy Scout Association in Namibia. With the outbreak of World War II, the organization was again banned.

Between 1962 and 1965, with the support of the South African mandate authority, work was carried out on the establishment of a German-speaking scout association, which then took place in 1965 under the name of the German Scout Association of South West Africa . This association worked with the English-speaking South-West Africa Division of the Boy Scouts of South Africa and the Boer Voortrekkers until Namibia's independence .

In 1990 the German Scout Association of Namibia received its current name.

There are also German-speaking groups in the WOSM member association Scouts of Namibia .


Scout meeting in Austria in the 1920s

In 1910 the first Austrian scout group was formed as the Wiener Neustadt scout corps , which still exists today in the groups Wiener Neustadt 1 and Wiener Neustadt 2. In a short time, German scout groups as well as those of other nationalities developed throughout Austria-Hungary , mostly organized in national associations.

In 1912 Emmerich Teuber founded the first scout group in Vienna . At the same time the Catholic Church founded a scout organization - the "Scout Corps St. George". Emmerich "Papa" Teuber's group enjoyed increasing popularity and in 1913 they held their first camp.

In 1913 the first groups of girl scouts came into being in Austria.

In 1914 the Austrian Scout Association (ÖPB) was founded in Vienna . The girl scouts were also organized in the Austrian Girl Scout Association. In 1917 the ÖPB had 3,450 members (3,150 men + 300 women).

From 1920 groups of young boy scouts emerged in Austria , who almost always joined German associations, such as the German Scout Association , the New Scouts or the Ring Scouts .

In 1922 the ÖPB became a member of WOSM.

In 1924 Austrian scouts took part in a world jamboree for the first time.

In 1926 Catholic scout groups left the ÖPB and founded the Austrian Scout Corps St. Georg (ÖPK) under the leadership of Adolf Klarer. The Austrian Girl Scout Corps St. Georg , which is affiliated to the ÖPK, was created for Catholic girl scouts . The ÖPK was also a member of WOSM.

In 1929 the Association of Helpers was founded as the first independent scout association.

In 1938, after the so-called annexation of Austria to the German Reich, the Austrian scout associations were banned.

In 1945 the Association of Austrian Girl Scouts was founded by Charlotte Teuber -Weckersdorf, the daughter of Willy "Uncle" Teuber and niece of Emmerich "Papa" Teuber .

In 1946 representatives of the two boys' associations active before 1938, the Austrian Scout Corps St. Georg and the Austrian Scout Association , decided, under the impression of the prohibition period, the church and political situation and at the request of the World Office, to found a single organization. Thus, in 1946, the Association of Austrian Scouts (PÖ) was established, which WOSM accepted in the same year.

In 1949, the Austrian Scout Association (ÖPB) split off from the PÖ for content-related and personal reasons, in particular because the PÖ felt too closely related to the Catholic Church. However, there was still contact between the two groups.

After the disintegration of the Association of Austrian Girl Scouts , some of the groups founded the Austrian Girl Scout Association St. Georg (ÖPVSG) in 1950 .

In 1951 the 7th World Jamboree took place in Bad Ischl . In this year the old scout guilds of the ÖPB and the old scout clubs of the PÖ merged to form the Association of Old Scout Guilds of Austria, today the Austrian Scout Guild .

In 1957 WAGGGS accepted the Austrian Girl Scout Association St. Georg as a member.

In 1972 six leaders from the ÖPB, under the leadership of Karl Turetschek, founded the youth castle Streitwiesen .

1976, which closed Scouts of Austria and the Austrian Scouts Association of St. George to the Boy Scouts and Girl Guides of Austria together.

In 1985 the Christian Scouts Royal Rangers Austria were founded in Dornbirn .

In 1995 the Austrian Scouts and the Austrian Scout Association agreed a cooperation agreement.

In 2010, the Laxenburg Palace Park hosted the anniversary camp of the Austrian boy scouts. The largest camp on Austrian soil since the 1951 World Jamboree in Bad Ischl has been attended by 6,500 scouts from 20 nations. Together they celebrated the centenary of the scout movement in Austria.


In 1910, on the initiative of the doctor Karl Graeter, the first scout group in Switzerland was founded in Basel. She was affiliated with the Good Templar youth and thus part of the abstinence movement .

In 1911, the first groups of girl scouts came into being in Switzerland.

In Switzerland, the boy scout idea quickly encountered some interested educators and youth friends, so that in French-speaking Switzerland the boys' groups of the Christian Association of Young People (YMCA) recognized very quickly that the ideas that Baden-Powell had brought into the world were the boys much more enthusiastic. On March 18, 1912, the first Swiss Boy Scout Association was founded and the boy scout's motto "Always ready!", The first badge with the crossbow, the first form of the boy scout promise , the Boy Scout Law in twelve sentences, the uniform was published in the May edition of their boys' newspaper.

In Geneva , Louis Blondel , the director of the “Jeunesse Club” , and Maurice Vautier in Lausanne, together with several friends, founded a scout association independent of the YMCA.

In autumn 1912 both directions were united and in October 1913 the Swiss Boy Scout Association (SPB) was founded in Bern for German and French Switzerland , the first central president of which was Colonel William Borel , and which was headed by Walter von Bonstetten as federal field master (federal leader) until 1942 .

1913 was Scout Corps Patria in Bern by Walter von Bonstetten founded.

The Federation of Swiss Girl Scouts (BSP) was founded in 1919 .

From 1920 the BSP took part in the meetings of the International Conference of Girl Scouts; In 1928 he was one of the founding members of the WAGGGS .

In 1922 the SPB became a member of WOSM .

The first World Scout Moot took place in Kandersteg in 1931 .

After the start of the war in 1939, the scouts were also used in the scout aid service in Switzerland to support the army. Many girl scouts reported to the Red Cross .

In 1953 another World Scout Moot was held in Kandersteg.

In 1957, WAGGGS held a world camp in the Vallée de Conches.

In 1966 the 6th federal camp took place in Domleschg, with 12,000 participants.

In 1980 the first joint federal camp of SPB and BSP took place.

In 1982 the Christian Scouts Royal Rangers began their work in Switzerland.

In 1987 SPB and BPS merged to form the Swiss Scout Movement (PBS).

In 1992 a World Scout Moot is held for the third time in Kandersteg.

In 1994 a federal camp under the motto Cuntrast (contrast) with around 20,000 participants was carried out in the Napf area .

In 2003 the PBS gave itself a new association structure. The PBS was now run by an association management instead of a federal management and a federal board.

In 2008, the next national camp Contura took 08 of the PBS in the Linthebene instead.

South Tyrol (Italy)

In 1969 the first German-speaking boy scout groups emerged in South Tyrol within the Catholic youth group . In their work they were based on the German Scouting Association Sankt Georg (DPSG).

In 1973 these groups founded their own association, the South Tyrol Scouting Association (SP).

In 1997 the SP became a member of the Italian umbrella organization FIS and thus of the world associations WOSM and WAGGGS.



  • Robert Dollinger: History of the Christian scouts in Bavaria: 1910-1980 . Self-published, Bubenreuth 1980.
  • Christina Hebben: Scouts after 1945 - a new beginning in occupied Germany . Puls 23 - Documentation of the youth movement. ISSN  0342-3328
  • Paul-Thomas Hinkel: The scout associations in the Federal Republic of Germany . Deutscher Spurbuchverlag, 3rd edition, Baunach 1990. ISBN 3887781546
  • Elise von Hopffgarten: The boy scout book for young girls . Reprint. Deutscher Spurbuchverlag, Baunach 1991. ISBN 3887781694
  • Axel Hübner: Streets are to be crossed like rivers: a reading book on the history of the Association of German Scouts (BDP) . Verlag Jugend und Politik, Frankfurt am Main 1981. ISBN 3882030674
  • Dieter Kraeter, Hanns-Dieter Lohnes (Hrsg.): From the work and community of the Christian scouts in Germany. Path Publishing House, Kassel 1960.
  • Alexander Lion: The Boy Scout Book . Reprint. Deutscher Spurbuchverlag, Baunach 1987. ISBN 3887781643
  • Florian Malzacher: Youth Movement for Beginners . 2nd Edition. Witzenhausen, Verlag der Jugendbewegung 2004. ISBN 3882581247
  • Christoph Schubert-Weller: That's how it began, scouting as a pre-military education . Deutscher Spurbuchverlag, Baunach 1988. ISBN 3887781619
  • Reinhard Schmoeckel : Strategy of an infiltration: from the scout association to the revolutionary cell. Olzog, Munich 1979, ISBN 3789271411 .
  • Karl Seidelmann: The Boy Scouts in German Youth History (3 vol.):
  • Vol. 1. Presentation . Hannover, Schroedel 1977. ISBN 3507380374
  • Vol. 2.1. Sources and documents from the period up to 1945 . Hannover, Schroedel 1980. ISBN 3507380382
  • Vol. 2.2. Sources and documents from 1945 to the present . Halle / Saale. Pedagogical Publishing Office 1991. ISBN 3782690508


  • Thomas Ertlthaler: The history of the boy scouts and girl guides of Austria in an international context . Dissertation, University of Vienna, 1994.
  • Kurt Pribich: Log of the scout associations in Austria . 2nd Edition. Austrian Scouts Guild, Vienna 2004.
  • Horst Ziegler: The history of the Austrian scout movement from a Styrian perspective . Scouts and Girl Scouts of Austria's Regional Association of Styria, Graz 1999.


Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Letter of allegiance and petition from the German Reichspfadfinderbund to Adolf Hitler , at, accessed on October 29, 2018
  2. a b c d Golf Dornseif: Southwestern scouts between all fronts ( Memento from July 19, 2011 in the Internet Archive ) (PDF file; 3.13 MB) , accessed on April 22, 2011
  3. Allgemeine Zeitung (AZ): Always ready-the scout movement in Namibia is becoming more and more popular. February 25, 2011, archived from the original on November 2, 2012 ; Retrieved May 17, 2011 .
  4. ^ Scout group Wiener Neustadt 2 - Home. Retrieved November 29, 2017 .
  5. ^ Young Austria: The oldest German scout corps. (No longer available online.) Formerly in the original ; accessed on October 6, 2008 (year 1917, issue 8).  ( Page no longer available , search in web archivesInfo: The link was automatically marked as defective. Please check the link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Toter Link /  
  6. Die Presse: Pathfinder: A Movement Seeks Meaning , August 7, 2010
  7. ^ History of WAGGGS. World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts , archived from the original on March 13, 2015 ; accessed on March 9, 2015 .
  8. The history of the Swiss Boy Scout Association (Bubenbund) 1910 - 1945