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Berry and the Girl Scouts of America

By Rebecca Howells, Bloomsburg University

March 2012

Over the past week or so I have been noticing more and more Girl Scout cookie sales tables popping up in shopping centers, malls, and even outside on main roads. After seeing these stands (and buying a box of Thin Mints!), I immediately thought of this letter from Juliette Low to Martha Berry dated March, 6 1925. Ms. Low explains that her Girl Scouts are now established and that she would like to help support the Berry School as well. She also proposes the idea of having Martha Berry come visit her in the future. She shares that holding a little play and/or dance recital (and having Martha Berry speak) could possibly generate some money for them both and wants to know if Ms. Berry agrees with that idea.

Eighty-seven years later the Girl Scouts of America have expanded nationwide, and the organization is thriving. Juliette Low felt that all girls should be given the opportunity to develop physically, mentally, and spiritually. The Girl Scouts started off with about 20 girls and has a membership of over 3.2 million girls today. Martha Berry believed in educating the “Head, Heart and Hands,” and although the Berry School started off as a small school for poor children, it has grown, over time, into a nationally ranked liberal-arts college with just under 2,100 students.

Martha Berry was determined to make Berry a better place and to give children what they needed to succeed. You can tell by this letter that Juliette Low only wanted the best for her Girl Scouts, and she looked to Martha Berry for help and advice on how to achieve it.

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