Historic Pathfinding Merit Badge Booklet Historic Pathfinding Merit Badge


Requirements were valid effective April 1, 2010 - December 31, 2010 ONLY.

This Historic Merit Badge could be earned only during calendar year 2010, in honor of the 100th anniversary of the Boy Scouts of America.
It was first offered in 1911 and discontinued in 1952.


BSA allowed additional time until March 31, 2011, for those at the local council who enter advancement based on forms submitted,
 or unit management software file uploads provided. It also applied to unit advancement processors using Internet Advancement.
This was not intended as an extension of time to earn the badges; only as additional time for data entry
. Troops could submit advancement reports for Historic Merit Badges earned by Scouts before December 31, 2010 through March 31, 2011.

BSA had a special program in honor of the 100th anniversary of the founding of the BSA, which included the reintroduction, for 2010 only, of four Historical Merit Badges - Carpentry, Pathfinding, Signaling, and Tracking.

The basics of the 2010 Historical Merit Badge program included:

  • An overall goal of the program was for a majority of the BSA’s registered Boy Scouts to earn one or more of the merit badges during the centennial year, 2010.
  • The badges offered had a history that can be traced back to the origins of the BSA.
  • The original requirements were used, as well as supported by scanned pages of the early merit badge pamphlets so a Scout could view what a Scout 100 years ago used. Supporting the scanned pages of the original pamphlets were information guides for each merit badge that explained what a Scout of 1910 might have experienced, along with background information to assist a Scout in understanding what may be unfamiliar terms.
  • The contemporary merit badges closely resemble the original designs of their counterparts with the exception of the border, which is gold. The unique border will immediately identify them as 2010 historic merit badges.
  • The four historical merit badges could be used toward a Scout’s rank advancement if they were earned by December 31, 2010.
  • The effective date for earning these new merit badges was April 1, 2010, and requirements had to be completed no later than Dec. 31, 2010..
  • The BSA did not reprint the pamphlets for these merit badges. Reprints of the original merit badge pamphlets were posted to http://www.scouting.org/BoyScouts/AdvancementandAwards/MeritBadges.aspx

Download a pdf of the Original Merit Badge Book  

Download a pdf with the New Information for This Merit Badge

These are the original requirements written in 1911.


To obtain a merit badge for Pathfinding, a Scout must:

  1. In the country, know every lane, bypath, and short cut for a distance of at least two miles in every direction around the local scout headquarters; or in a city, have a general knowledge of the district within a three-mile radius of the local scout headquarters, so as to be able to guide people at any time, by day or by night.
  2. Know the population of the five principal neighboring towns, their general direction from his scout headquarters, and be able to give strangers correct directions how to reach them.
  3. If in the country, know in a two mile radius, the approximate number of horses, cattle, sheep, and pigs owned on the five neighboring farms; or, in a town, know, in a half-mile radius, the location of livery stables, garages and blacksmith shops.
  4. Know the location of the nearest meat markets, bakeries, groceries, and drug stores.
  5. Know the location of the the nearest police station, hospital, doctor, fire alarm, fire hydrant, telegraph and telephone offices, and railroad stations.
  6. Know something of the history of his place; and know the location of its principal public buildings, such as the town or city hall, post-office, schools and churches.
  7. Submit a map not necessarily drawn by himself upon which he personally has indicated as much as possible of the above information.

NOTE: These requirements differ from the original draft requirements previously posted on this web site.

BSA Advancement ID#: 140
Requirements last updated in: 2010
Pamphlet Publication Number: 00000
Pamphlet Stock (SKU) Number: NONE
Pamphlet Revision Date: 1927

Worksheets for use in working on these requirements: Format
Word Format PDF Format

Blanks in this worksheets table appear when we do not have a worksheet for the badge that includes these requirements.

Page updated on: May 08, 2022

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