It's about more than cookies: Girl Scouts mark 100 years of inclusiveness, empowerment

By: The Associated Press
By: The Associated Press

Saturday, March 3, 2012

SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) -- Put candles on the cookies: The Girl Scouts of the USA are celebrating a big birthday.

It's been 100 years since Juliette Gordon Low recruited the first Scouts in Georgia. Low's original registration book from March of 1912 shows 102 recruits. Now there are 2.3 million active Girl Scouts nationwide.

Historian Mary Rothschild says the Girl Scouts' core has changed little. They emphasize cooking and domestic skills while also pushing girls outside traditional gender roles. Early Girl Scouts were taught to shoot rifles. Today they get lessons in forensic crime-solving.

The Girl Scouts also have a history of inclusiveness. Early troops were formed for black girls and those with disabilities. Last year, a Girl Scout troop in Colorado admitted a transgender child.

(Copyright 2012, The Associated Press)

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