Thursday, February 11, 2010

Boy Scout on Stamp? - Not!

According to Washington state's North Kitsap Herald,"One of the most recognizable Boy Scouts in the organization's 100-year history was never a Scout.

Reporter Tad Sooter writes, "Fifty years ago, North Kitsap's Thornton Percival's face and lanky body were made famous in prints by Norman Rockwell, who used him as a model for a series of Boy Scouts illustrations. Percival, in full Scout uniform, appeared on handbook covers, calendars and even a U.S. postage stamp painted by the legendary illustrator."

In 1957 Rockwell plucked 12-year-old Percival and a few other children from the local elementary school to use as models for magazine illustrations.

"The most widely published of the Rockwell series was a picture used on a United States Postal Service four-cent commemorative stamp. In the more than 120 million reproductions of the tiny illustration, a 14-year-old Percival is staring purposefully ahead while holding up the three-finger Boy Scout salute with his right hand," according to the article.

The stamp and prints made Percival a celebrity among Boy Scouts and stamp collectors. Requests for autographs flooded the town's post office.

The article points out "His image became a model for a generation of Scouts, but Percival was just that — a model. The boy from Stockbridge, Mass., never joined the Boy Scouts."

For more on this story, click here.
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posted by Don Schilling at 12:01 AM