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Our History

OA Becomes Official Experiment

OA Becomes Official Experimental Program of BSA

 For the first 17 years of its existence, the Order had operated autonomously. While made up exclusively of Scouts the Order did not report to the national office. The one nod to the BSA authority was the Scout Executive, the Supreme Chief of the Fire, who possessed the authority to terminate the lodge.

The national authority of the Order was the Grand Lodge and in 1932, led by Grand Chieftain Robroy Price the Grand Lodge sought recognition by the National Council of the BSA. Since the beginning of the Grand Lodge, virtually all officers had themselves been professional Scouters and Robroy Price was no exception serving as the Scout Executive in Schenectady, New York. When the Grand Council of the Order met with National Council representatives at the national BSA office in New York it was a very friendly audience. E. Urner Goodman along with past Grand Chieftain Arthur Schuck and four-time Grand Scribe Harvey Gordon represented the National Council. Also representing the BSA were Mr. McDonald, Mr. Wyland and Dr. Hurt.

The meeting went most favorably for the Order. It was decided that Dr. Huber William Hurt would be designated by the National Council to investigate the Order and that he would send questionnaires to all local lodges and prepare a report. The Order itself would also canvas local lodges to inquire about how to accomplish National Council recognition. It was also agreed that the Order of the Arrow would again be designated as an official experiment of the Boy Scouts of America for a period of one year. The process had begun that would lead to a “new relationship” between the OA and the BSA in 1934.