Those Knots

I had an interesting discussion recently about the “Knots” I wear on my uniform.
First of all, lets clarify that yes I wear the knots that I have been awarded, presented or otherwise received. Some do not agree on the wearing of knots, and that is what this post is all about…

You see, a Scouts mom came to me and asked why I wear them. I simply replied because of your son.
“My Son” she said.. yes YOUR son is the reason I wear the knots. I wear the Scoutmaster Key knot because I provided Junior Leader training for your son, which he attended and did well and now we get to see his leadership unfolding in the Troop. I wear it because I have been to training to make me a better Scoutmaster for your son, I wear it because I continue to attend round table meetings to get new ideas to pass on to your son and his buddies in the Troop.
I wear the Scoutmaster Award of Merit, because your son and his peers along with the Troop committee felt I was deserving.
I wear the District Award of Merit because your son and his brothers in the District enjoyed Camporee and Webelos Woods and other District activities that I gave my time for to ensure that he did have a great Scouting experience.
Remember when your son was a Cub Scout and I was his Cubmaster and Den leader? Yes, those knots were given to me for dedicating time and energy into that program so your son would find a path to Boy Scouts… Oh and the real neat colored one, the William D. Boyce Award. I proudly wear it for starting up the unit.
Oh and I wear my Arrow of Light proudly too. I never earned my Eagle Award, but you know, your son and I have something in common, we both wear the AOL.. and he knows that it means the world to me.
Yes, it’s all about your son. I wear the knots, show up for campouts, teach about leadership and character, sing silly songs, and sit quietly on a starry nights, all for your son.
Other Scouters don’t feel the need to wear the knots, I like them because every time I put my shirt on and look in the mirror I see the value of the program for your son. I wear my wood Badge beads as a reminder to never stop working my ticket, which by the way had to do with your son…
Moms and Dads… it’s for your son that we volunteer in the greatest organization on Earth. And wearing a small knot on my uniform reminds me… and you, of why we do it.

Have a Great Scouting Day!


  1. Have you seen anything from National that shows knots on the new uniform?Are they going to keep knots around when they decide to issue the new insignia guide?


  2. Yes Dan- Knots do go on the new uniform exactly like they are currently on the “Old” uniform.I was at our National Jamboree meeting the other night and the folks from Council were wearing the new uniform with knots in place.. as were other Scouters. No changes there.I too anxtiously await the new insignia guide.


  3. Wow Jerry, that’s an impressive number of badges! But then if you do the work for them, you deserve to wear them. It proves you put in the work for your Troop. Wear them with pride!If a Leader has earned his Eagle Scout award, can he wear it on his uniform as a Leader?Nick


  4. THANK YOU!!!! Our Patrol Project for WoodBadge was “Earn As You Learn”. Learning about how to be a better leader for Scouts and you earn a Knot (or Patch: LNT)for your uniform. I have no idea why so many are against adults wearing the knots they have earned. It’s like asking a Scout to only put on his sash his Eagle Required ones. Plus I use it as a way to engage Scout/Adult conversations. At our BoR we have the Scout ask a question of the Adults at the end of the Board. When I prep them I tell them that the various knots means something to that Adult. Ask them what it is and you might learn something from a District Award of Merit Leader…


  5. Thanks for the explaination Jerry. I knew the knots were awarded you I just never got the chance to ask the specifics. I do believe you should wear them proudly and that you do. Being in your troop I Know that you wear them because of “Our Sons” Thank you for your continued dedication and service ~Chrystie


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