Running the Gauntlet




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By Dan Beard

tbp361.gif (19193 bytes)
Fig. 361. 
Running the Gantlet. 

After you have tested your skill in these two games you may all run the gantlet, and I promise you that it will be as noisy, hilarious, and boisterous as any sport upon the calendar. 

It frequently was the custom of the old red-skinned warriors, when they had a prisoner, to arm themselves with tomahawks and war-clubs and then form in two lines as if they intended to dance a reel. When everything was ready the prisoner was started down between the lines, and as the poor wretch passed each warrior endeavored to strike him with his tomahawk or war-club. 

It would seem that it must have been impossible for any one to run this gantlet and live; but Simon Kenton and many others among the pioneers succeeded in doing so and some in making an escape. We, however, do not intend to kill, maim, or even hurt the ones who are running the gantlet; we want only to mark them; so in place of deadly weapons, the two lines of the Sons of Daniel Boone can arm themselves with stockings in each of which a handful of flour has been placed. When you are all ready, form two lines facing each other. 

Then Daniel Boone calls out, "Attention! Are you ready? Go!" At the word "Go" the two men facing each other at the foot of the line start pell-mell, dodging to escape the stockings (Fig. 361), to positions facing each other at the head of the line, where they halt. just as soon as they have got in line they both shout out " Go, " and the next two men at the foot of the line follow, in their turn running the gantlet, until they reach the head of the line. 

This is continued until every man has run the gantlet (Fig. 361 A shows how the men are arranged and how they run); then all are lined up for inspection, and the scout who is found to have the least flour upon his person is awarded a nick. To make this decision, Daniel Boone goes down the line and examines all the men; then he asks the three or four men who have the smallest amount of stocking marks upon them to take three steps to the front, and Appleseed Johnny comes up and decides which one of the three is the winner. 

Whenever any one boy is announced a winner, do not fail to immediately give him three cheers. Never dispute the decisions of your judges and umpires. Remember, you are all in this for the fun of it, and if you should be so unfortunate as to not have competent officers it can all be remedied at the next election. Every member of each Fort must stand back to back and support each other in every way possible, just as fellow-freemasons do among the men. The uniform or button of the Boy Pioneers or the Sons of Daniel Boone must bring the wearer a cordial welcome from all his brother scouts.

" Gander- Pulling" and "The Goose Hangs High"

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The Boy Pioneers






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Last modified: October 15, 2016.