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US Enters Korean War

The Korean war began on June 25, 1950. The Korean peninsula had been ruled by Japan since 1910 and following the surrender of Japan at the end of World War II, Korea was divided along the 38th Parallel with United States troops occupying the Southern part and Soviet troops occupying the Northern part.

National OA Committee Red Sash

In the spring 1950 issue of the National Bulletin, Arrowmen were told that members of the National OA Committee would be available to meet with them at the 1950 NOAC. It was stated that they would be accessible to help members better understand the Order and its policies. Members were also told,

you’ll recognize these men because they will be wearing a special Vigil Honor band on which the colors will be reversed. These bands were made specifically for our Committee so that lodge members could recognize these officials and seek their help.

The Goodman National OA Committee Red Sash

In 1950 the National OA Committee created a reversed color OA Vigil Honor sash so that National OA Committeemen could easily be identified. There were as few as 15 of these special felt Vigil Honor sashes issued. One of these special sashes belonged to E. Urner Goodman. The sash was only used for a few years and after 1954 the sash retired from usage.

NOAC 1950 - 35th Anniversary Meeting

While today the 1950 meeting is called a National Order of the Arrow Conference or NOAC, back then they called it the 35th Anniversary Meeting or Convention. This meeting was like a modern NOAC. It was held for the second time at the University of Indiana, Bloomington. Approximately 1,100 delegates attended. There were group discussions and classes on topics ranging from regalia, ceremonies and lodge functions. This time many of the classes were taught by youth including Area Conference Chiefs.  The OA Distinguished Service Award was presented.

Brotherhood Barn Fireplace Completed

In 1950 a massive fireplace was completed in E. Urner Goodman’s “Brotherhood Barn” located in the Green Mountains of Vermont. The fireplace project had begun in 1948 as a tangible recognition of the admiration all Arrowmen had for the Order’s founder.

NBA Begins

The NBA was founded as the Basketball Association of America on June 6, 1946. The first game was played between the New York Knickerbockers and the Toronto Huskies. The league changed its name to the National Basketball Association, (NBA) when the BAA merged with the rival National Basketball League (NBL) in 1949.

First Modern Day African American Baseball Player

Jackie Robinson became the first African American to play modern Major League Baseball on April 15, 1947 at Ebbets Field, Brooklyn, New York. Born in Georgia, the son of sharecroppers, the youngest of five children (Brother “Mack” won a Silver Medal behind Jesse Owens in the 200 Meter Dash at the 1936 Olympics), Robinson went to UCLA and served his nation in the military.

J. Rucker Newbery

J. Rucker Newbery is best known as the editor of the first Order of the Arrow Handbook in 1948. Newbery officially joined the OA on June 11, 1936 when he chartered the Bob White Lodge, Augusta Georgia into the Order while serving as their Scout Executive. Newbery remained a member of the Order until his death in 1978.

Early in 1942 Frank Dix of the National Executive Committee tendered his resignation. Dix had been selected to the National Executive Committee as the Southern representative. When he was re-assigned by the national office as a Deputy Regional Executive to Cincinnati, he could no longer serve. It was a national BSA policy requiring balance on the lead OA committee that a Southern representative was required on the committee. Dix suggested J. Rucker Newbery as his replacement and in 1942 Newbery was appointed to the National Executive Committee.

OA Official Part of BSA

It was announced at the 1948 NOAC that the Order of the Arrow would be fully incorporated into the Boy Scouts of America. In a process that had started in 1921 with the first national organization, the Order of the Arrow had finally realized its most ambitious and desired goal. This announcement was met with some acrimony from Arrowmen concerned about the BSA taking over the Order. While the national OA leadership had been fully dedicated for over 15 years to achieving this goal, many Arrowmen took pride in the autonomy of the Order.

It had happened incrementally. In 1922 WWW was labeled an Official BSA experiment. Starting in 1932 the OA was thoroughly investigated by the BSA and made a Scout program in 1934, effective January 1, 1935. Once an official program the Order grew rapidly. The OA grew from 43 active lodges at the end of 1934 to 362 active lodges in 1948. The OA had become a true national organization operating in every region of the country.

Truman Becomes President

Truman took office as the 33rd President of the United States three months into Roosevelt’s fourth term following Roosevelt's death. It was a rough time, and World War II was still raging. Truman was the one who made the decision to utilize the atomic bomb – a controversial decision.


Harry S. Truman was a strong supporter of the Boy Scouts. In addition to being the Honorary President of the BSA, Truman personally attended and opened the 1950 National Scout Jamboree at Valley Forge, PA.

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