Scouts

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NMAI-The-Scout—Apache-1906.-EdwardS.Curtis.-Northwestern-U-Library.jpg

Origin

Middle English, from Anglo-French escuter to listen, from Latin auscultare

Definitions

  • 1: A high overhanging rock. (Old Norse skúte (in Icelandic ‘cave formed by jutting rocks’, Vigfusson)
  • 2:a. The action of spying out or watching in order to gain information
b. One sent out ahead of the main force in order to reconnoitre the position and movements of the enemy. Hence in wider sense: One sent out to obtain information.
c. A bee searching for a new site for a swarm to settle or a new source of food.
  • 3: A local name for various sea-birds native to Great Britain; as the Guillemot ( Alca troile), the Razor-bill ( Alca torda), and the Puffin ( Fratercula arctica). green scoot n. a local name for the Green Cormorant ( Phalacrocorax Graculus).
  • 4: An observer of (a team, a company, etc.) with a view to recruiting suitably talented persons to one's organization (esp. a sports club); to assess (an individual) with this purpose.

Description

Traditional

Scouts were members of the Apache tribe who engaged in scouting, either for game or during time of war. Only Lipan, Chiricahua and Mescaleros had scout societies. The scouts' original purpose was to protect his people from enemies, and to locate game and new campsites.

The scouts trained their own clansmen in an intense process that lasted over ten years. Young children within the clan would be closely observed by current scouts and elders. Those who showed promise in skills—such as awareness, tracking and hunting, physical fitness, and selflessness—would be selected to undergo the training process.

Training included advanced techniques of camouflage and invisibility as well as of observation and stalking. These skills led to their nicknames as "shadow people" and "ghosts". The scouts became masters of wilderness survival, excelling beyond the skills of the lay clansmen. This was necessary, for they often had to leave the clan for extended periods of time with little more than knives.

Moreover, the upcoming scouts were taught a highly complex system of tracking, utilizing miniature topographic features within each footprint. These features could tell the trackers anything from the speed at which the animals were moving, to the directions the animals, or humans, were looking at the times they left the track. Some tracking experts, such as Tom Brown, Jr., assert that scout-trained trackers could know whether the makers were hungry, pregnant, or had to urinate, and to what degree.

The word clan was not used back in 1150 AD, nor 500 BC with the Apaches, they were all tribe members starting at the age of eight to ten years old. They had to be aware, able to track, hunt, become physically fit, and undergo rigorous training with the adult "tracker Apache". The camouflage wasn't used while training, only actual hunting, and battle. The nicknames were based on when they were born, and what their birth name was, also how well they came through training, then they were given a name.

See also