Order of the Arrow

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The Order of the Arrow (OA) is the national honor society of the Boy Scouts of America (BSA). It uses American Indian-styled traditions and ceremonies to bestow recognition on scouts selected by their peers as best exemplifying the ideals of Scouting. The society was created by E. Urner Goodman, with the assistance of Carroll A. Edson, in 1915 as a means of reinforcing the Scout Oath and the Scout Law. The goal was to establish these as lifelong guidelines, and to encourage continued participation in Scouting and camping. Influenced in part by camp traditions, and Indian folklore, the OA uses "safeguarded" symbols, handshakes, and ceremonies to impart a sense of community.

Inducted members, known as Arrowmen or Brothers, number more than 180,000 youth and adults. They are organized into local youth-led lodges that harbor fellowship, promote camping, and render service to Boy Scout councils and their communities. Members wear identifying insignia on their uniforms, most notably the OA sash, and are eligible for special OA awards. The OA program sponsors several events, awards, and training functions.



Founding and development of the society

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