H&N: History of the Girl Scout Promise and Law

Juliette Photo from H&N
Color portrait of Juliette Gordon Low by Alfred Jonniaux. Historic photo provided courtesy of Girl Scouts of the USA for Hear&Now.

Hear&Now Feature: Girl Scout Promise and Law.
How they’ve changed through the years.
By: Safia and Laurann

The Girl Scout Promise and Law are the backbone of all things Girl Scout. When doing an activity with your troop, it’s always a good idea to look back at the Girl Scout Law and Promise to ensure that you are abiding by them. Although they have changed, the Girl Scout Law and Promise have still kept their positive message.

What the Girl Scout Promise and the Girl Scout Law stand for:
The Girl Scout Promise and Law is the way Girl Scouts agree to act every day toward one another and the world. When the Girl Scout Promise is said, we hold up three fingers, which symbolizes the three parts of the Promise.

Girl Scout Promise
1927 

On my honor, I will try:
To do my duty to God and my country,
To help other people at all times,
To obey the Girl Scout Laws.

Current use:
On my honor, I will try:
To serve God and my country,
To help people at all times,
And to live by the Girl Scout Law.

 

The Girl Scout Law
1912
1. A Girl Scout’s Honor Is to be Trusted
2. A Girl Scout Is Loyal
3. A Girl Scout’s Duty Is to be Useful and to Help Others
4. A Girl Scout is a Friend to All, and a Sister to every other Girl Scout no matter to what Social Class she May Belong
5. A Girl Scout Is Courteous
6. A Girl Scout Keeps Herself Pure
7. A Girl Scout Is a Friend to Animals
8. A Girl Scout Obeys Orders
9. A Girl Scout is Cheerful
10. A Girl Scout is Thrifty

1920
1. A Girl Scout’s Honor Is to be Trusted
2. A Girl Scout Is Loyal
3. A Girl Scout’s Duty Is to be Useful and to Help Others
4. A Girl Scout is a Friend to All, and a Sister to every other Girl Scout
5. A Girl Scout Is Courteous
6. A Girl Scout Is a Friend to Animals
7. A Girl Scout Obeys Orders
8. A Girl Scout is Cheerful
9. A Girl Scout is Thrifty
10. A Girl Scout is Clean in Thought, Word and Deed.

1972
I will do my best:
to be honest
to be fair
to help where I am needed
to be cheerful
to be friendly and considerate
to be a sister to every Girl Scout
to respect authority
to use resources wisely
to protect and improve the world around me
to show respect for myself and others through my words and actions

Changed from “The Girl Scout Laws” to “The Girl Scout Law.”

1996 (and in current use)
I will do my best to be
honest and fair,
friendly and helpful,
considerate and caring,
courageous and strong, and
responsible for what I say and do,
and to
respect myself and others,
respect authority,
use resources wisely,
make the world a better place,
and be a sister to every Girl Scout.

 

What does the Girl Scout Promise and Law mean to you? Leave a comment below!

2 Comments Add yours

  1. Madeleine says:

    Could the Girl Scout Law be changed again? For example, could a scout change a part of the law as a Gold Award project?

    1. Hi Madeleine,

      Thanks for reaching out to us! The Girl Scout Gold Award take action project needs to address an issue outside of the Girl Scout community. A change to the Girl Scout Law would not qualify as an issue you can address with a gold project.

      If you’re needing some inspiration, check out this awesome map to see how other Girl Scouts are changing the world with their take action projects: http://bit.ly/1NQWiUq

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