Original merit badges

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In 1910, the Boy Scouts of America announced 14 "Badges of Merit" in the temporary "Original edition" of the BSA Handbook:

  1. Ambulance
  2. Clerk
  3. Cyclist
  4. Electrician
  5. Fireman
  6. Gardener
  7. Horseman
  8. Marksman
  9. Master-of-Arms
  10. Musician
  11. Pioneer
  12. Seaman
  13. Signaller
  14. Stalker


In 1911, Master-of-Arms was dropped, the others were retained with changed names, 44 new ones were added, and all became know as "Merit Badges".


This is a list of the original 57 Merit Badges issued by the Boy Scouts of America in 1911, with the surviving 1910 "Badges of Merit" in bold:

  1. Agriculture
  2. Angling
  3. Archery
  4. Architecture
  5. Art
  6. Astronomy
  7. Athletics
  8. Automobiling
  9. Aviation
  10. Beefarming
  11. Blacksmithing
  12. Bugling
  13. Clerk -> Business
  14. Camping
  15. Carpentry
  16. Chemistry
  17. Civics
  18. Conservation
  19. Cooking
  20. Craftsmanship
  21. Cyclist -> Cycling
  22. Dairying
  23. Electrician -> Electricity
  24. Fireman -> Firemanship
  25. Ambulance -> First Aid
  26. First Aid to Animals
  27. Forestry
  28. Gardener -> Gardening
  29. Handicraft
  30. Horseman ->Horsemanship
  31. Interpreting
  32. Invention
  33. Leatherworking
  34. Lifesaving
  35. Machinery
  36. Marksman -> Marksmanship
  37. Masonry
  38. Mining
  39. Musician ->Music
  40. Ornithology
  41. Painting
  42. Pathfinding
  43. Personal Health
  44. Photography
  45. Pioneer -> Pioneering
  46. Plumbing
  47. Poultry Farming
  48. Printing
  49. Public Health
  50. Scholarship
  51. Sculpture
  52. Seaman -> Seamanship
  53. Signaller -> Signaling
  54. Stalker -> Stalking
  55. Surveying
  56. Swimming
  57. Taxidermy
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