Stephenson Smyth Baden-Powell, 1st Baron Baden-Powell of Gilwell,
was a lieutenant-general in the British Army, writer, and founder
of the Scout Movement. He was born 22nd February 1857, at 6
Stanhope Street (now 11 Stanhope Terrace), Paddington in London,
son of Reverend Baden Powell, a Savilian Professor of Geometry
at Oxford University, who already had four teenage children
from the second of his two previous marriages. After attending
Rose Hill School, Tunbridge Wells, he was awarded a scholarship
to be educated at Charterhouse School, after which he served
in the British Army from 1876 until 1910 in India and Africa.
In 1899, during the Second Boer War in South Africa, Baden-Powell
successfully defended the city in the Siege of Mafeking. Several
of his military books, written for military reconnaissance and
scout training in his African years, were also read by boys.
Based on those earlier books, he wrote Scouting for Boys, published
in 1908 by Pearson, for youth readership. During writing, he
tested his ideas through a camping trip on Brownsea Island that
began on 1 August 1907, which is now seen as the beginning of
his marriage with Olave St Clair Soames, Baden-Powell, his sister
Agnes Baden-Powell and notably his wife actively gave guidance
to the Scouting Movement and the Girl Guides Movement. Baden-Powell
lived his last years in Nyeri, Kenya, where he died in 1941.
- Robert Baden Powell - follow link for full biography]
from "British Commanders in the Transvaal War 1899-1900"
published by W.D. & H.O. Wills Ltd:
R. S. S. BADEN-POWELL.
Was born February 22nd, 1857, his father being a well-known
professor at Oxford. From his earliest days industry, natural
ability and frankness of spirit never failed to gain a high
place for him in the affections of his companions. And so it
is at present, for a correspondent from the beleaguered town
writes:—"To see B.P.' go whistling down the streets
of Mafeking deep in thought, pleasing of countenance, bright,
and confident, is cheering and heartening. Had any man in whom
the town placed less confidence been in command, disaster might
have befallen Mafeking, and if we are able to place the name
of Mafeking on the roll of the Empire's outposts which have
fought for the honour and glory of Britain, it will be chiefly
because Baden-Powell has commanded us."
has had a varied experience since he entered the 13th Hussars
in 1876, first coming into prominence as a campaigner in the
Ashanti Expedition of 1896. Popular satisfaction was created
by his promotion to the command of 5th Dragoon Guards to act
in Rhodesia, but all previous achievements have been eclipsed
by his gallant defence of Mafeking, already referred to, against
pamphlet, entitled "Aids to Scouting," was of such
intrinsic value that the German Government gratuitously put
a copy into the hands of every German soldier.