Norway Boy Scout Christmas Postcard
Karen E. Johansen

In the 1920s-30s, the Norwegian Boy Scout Council printed this Christmas card projecting Scouting as being the better and Christian way for young boys to learn lessons on becoming men.  In a world that was about to be once again torn apart by war, it was the right message.  When the Nazis invaded Norway, Scouting was banned, and all references to it, such as this card were burned.  The Nazis had a passion for burning anything that did not agree with their message of the master race.

The reason for the survival of this card was my father.  As his family fled Norway with the German Army close behind, he grabbed the few personal items he could fit into a small case.  He must have thought this single card of some value.  Possibly, it was his way of remembering better times, or a hope for a better future as he joined others from his homeland in a battle for a better life.

Norway Boy Scout Christmas Postcard

I thought I would place a copy on the internet so others might remember two very important lessons.

1. The truth can never be destroyed by flame or hate.  It lives on in the hearts of man.
2. No matter how hard someone try's to destroy the truth, is always has a way of surfacing.

Collector's Comments
Hallvard Slettebø

The first/oldest advertisement of this card is from December 1926 in the "Speideren", journal of the Norwegian Boy Scout Association.  The postcard was sold by the publishers Windju Simonsen in Oslo for a price of NOK 0.15 (about 2 cents) per card.  Windju Simonsen issued many books for boys and girls, where Scouts were the principal characters.

Scouting in Norway, together with several other organizations, was banned on September 11, 1941 by a decree from the German occupiers.  The Association's assets were confiscated and all files destroyed.  Scout units were ordered to hand in all equipment and uniforms.  However, quite a lot of equipment and uniforms were saved from destruction and hidden until 1945.

Norwegian Scout postcards from before WWII are generally not very scarce, and fetch prices in the range of USD 10-30.  Postcards sent from Scout camps are worth more, especially those cancelled with a special Scout camp postmark.

SOSSI Journal, Vol. 48, No. 6, November-December 1999
Created by Keith Larson, 2000.