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Boys’ Life Archives

Scout Life magazine has partnered with Google Books to archive more than 100 years of Boys’ Life magazine. You can view nearly every issue from March 1911 to December 2012 at the following links:

Once you find the issue you’d like to read, just click on the “Preview this magazine” link. You can also search within a particular issue or across all issues.

What About Issues Since 2012?

Many articles published since 2012 are available here on the Scout Life website. You can also find recent issues of the magazine on the Scout Life app.

90 Comments on Boys’ Life Archives

  1. Star Scout // July 23, 2011 at 6:29 am // Reply

    Is anyone else having trouble seeing the wayback machine? The actual viewing area for the magazines is blank? Any advice, Boys’ Life?

  2. I believe that in an issue of Boy’s Life there was a contest to win a Corvette, around a ’68 to ’72 model. I entered the contest when I was a kid but you had to be over 18 to win but I thought they would have mercy on an underage applicant and grant me the car if I won. Needless to say I didn’t win. I’d love to find a copy of contest because that’s what got me interested in Corvettes. Has anyone seen what I am talking about? I hope I don’t have the wrong magazine! Thanks in advance!

  3. This brings back really old memories on my travels back to Gilwell.

  4. SO COOL!

  5. what is the March 1911 edition of boy life worth? We have one

  6. This is priceless!

  7. Always wanted to read BL articles written by James West, E T Seaton, Uncle Dan Beard, and, of course, to re-read Green Bar Bill. Wow! Any thoughts about downloadable PDF, Kindle, or iPad compatible versions?

  8. I’m trying to get info on the 1973 national jamboree in pennsylvania where I served on the amateur radio merit badge staff.
    Which issue of Boys Life ran a report?

  9. I wonder how they get these issues and where do they keep them,becuase of so many issues?

  10. Where can I find plans to build the air car seen in the december 1989 boys life

  11. Chaplain's Aid // June 15, 2011 at 11:04 pm // Reply

    Thank you so much Boy’sLife editors for putting Christianity in every issue. Don’t let anyone put a stop to that. Please aways keep it Christian. God bless BSA!

  12. icant find the january 2010 issue. can some body help me with that

  13. This is amazing!

  14. Why dont they have any upto date issues

  15. dear bsa we have the July 1963 issue but there is no MICKEY mANTEL ARE you sure it was that issue? we have Oct.1963/nov./july/Dec./may/Sept./Aug./June. 1964/march/feb./oct./april./aug./may/july/jan./june. 1965/jan./feb./april. thats all the issues we have. i hope this gives you an idea of what we have. ihope that someone will want any of these. if not we are going to throw them away.

  16. grampy's girl // May 22, 2011 at 6:11 pm // Reply

    My grandfather was an advertising artist and I have an original painting of a boys life magazine cover. I’m wondering if it was used. I’m not sure when it was done, but it has 3 boys trying to start a fire by rubbing a stick on a block of wood, and a native american smiling and handing them a lighter. Anyone ever see that one?

  17. How do I print a copy of a cool article?

  18. THANK YOU! There’s a story I remember reading as a kid, but couldn’t find anywhere. Many people I talked to remembered the story, but not the title or author. Some remembered that it was in Boys’ Life, and I finally found it — Mission: Survival by Curt Fischer, in the Aug. 1988 issue.

  19. Umm, it ain’t workin’!

  20. John Thurman's apprentice // May 3, 2011 at 2:20 pm // Reply

    I love it! Thank you for making these available! As a Scout, I personally enjoy reading these 1911 issues more than I do the 2011 issues. On thing that impresses me is the amount of material in the old magazines. It takes me much longer to read it than it does to reading the current magazines, and that is a good thing! I throughly enjoy reading the inspiring, manly fiction, and love the practicality of the articles on useful skills. Scout Skills, Public Speaking, Survival, Fitness, and much more. I love reading how to do things much more than I do reading about other people doing them. I know you at Boy’s Life try to make the magazines to appeal to current boys, and as a Scout myself, I would like to let you know that I would love it if you would make the current Boy’s Life magazines more like the old ones. I have some experience in writing and am the Senior Patrol Leader of my Troop, and if you would like, I would be willing to volunteer some of my time to write some articles. Please reply if you are interested. I know that there are others Scouts as well who would really appreciate the return of some of the old-style content. I don’t mean outdated, rather up-to-date but written with the same practical value and spirit of rugged adventure that the old one’s are written in. Thank you again for your hard work in making these available.

  21. we werewondering if the 1963 nov. issue is worth any money? we have it and its in aone condition! please let me know. thank you.

  22. SEPTIMUSHEAP // April 26, 2011 at 7:05 pm // Reply

    Kinda useful

  23. Woww! These old issues are just golden history. It’s great that they are available..

  24. NC SCOUTER // April 25, 2011 at 5:09 pm // Reply

    Us old scouts remember those great black and white illustrated Boy’s Life reprint pamphlets we use to devour as kids.
    This site reminds me of what a treasure trove of great stuff is in these back issues….Green Bar Bill, W. Ben Hunt, Whittlin’ Jim’s Slide of the Month.
    What a resource that isn’t being tapped by national…get the presses rolling guys!!!

  25. This is kinda boring…..

    • some parts are, but the ‘think and grin’ and the hitching rack and the comics isn’t.
      that’s why I skipped some ywars, and started reading from jan 1947

  26. I hope that BL has the newer issues on the site soon.

  27. When do you expect to include the ability to print individual pages? I am working on an article about an event held by the BSA every year from 1920 through at least the mid-1930s and there are about 20 different pages I would like to print out to use as references.

  28. no 2010!

  29. I haven’t seen Boys’Life in years. Going here and pulling up some of the old issues from my youth brought back memories of simpler times. I was a cub acout and then worked my way to the rank of Life as a Boy Scout. Thanks for posting the magazines here.

  30. How do you order a specific issue of a magazine if you have lost an old one and would like a copy? September of 2009 to be specific.

  31. how do you order a specific issue of this magazine if you lost an old copy?

  32. when does the Hitching Rack and when does the Scouts in Action comics start?

  33. I like. Especially the Get Fit not Fat magzine. Why on some of the pages the pictures a cut off? can we still get the Get Fit not Fat magzine? Overall I like it.

  34. Troop 373 SPL INDY // March 24, 2011 at 7:10 pm // Reply

    Wasnt there any Magazines from 1910? or was that before it started?

  35. Scout Crazy // March 17, 2011 at 2:04 pm // Reply

    i have the best of boys life so i might have all the best ones anyways

  36. persoon who likes wayback // March 14, 2011 at 11:10 am // Reply

    I can’t look at 1920 October. is there a problem?

    the wayback machine isvery interesting and historical. I get to see the old jokes in the think and grin, old jokes can be good too, but some of them are not easy to understand.

  37. Cubmaster Jeff // March 14, 2011 at 5:51 am // Reply

    Is there a way to print a page of a magazine. I would like to share a page with my cubscouts.


    • Boys' Life // March 15, 2011 at 9:55 am // Reply

      We’re sorry, but printing is not available at this time.

    • If you have a Macintosh you can copy anything on the screen. Command/shift/3 captures the whole screen and command/shift/4 captures a section you select. I don’t know how its done on a windows machine

  38. Any luck finding Vol. 1 #2, which apparently was mid-March 1911?

  39. Scout Crazy // March 9, 2011 at 6:04 pm // Reply

    ya know what thats hard to read but only if you click the zoom in button

  40. amazing glimpse of history. I will look at it again and agoin.

  41. Mr Retired Boy Scout // March 5, 2011 at 4:55 pm // Reply

    This thing is awesome! BL, I hope you find the missing magazines soon- I’ve asked my Grandpa, Dad, and looked in my attic but can’t find any.

  42. boyscout wannabe // March 4, 2011 at 7:36 pm // Reply

    terrific. really cool

  43. where does the first pee wee comic start

    • Boys' Life // March 8, 2011 at 10:01 am // Reply

      The first Pee Wee Harris comic appeared in the September 1952 issues.
      But, you’ll also find short stories about him, starting in April 1920.

  44. Where is May 1911?

  45. why can’t you downlond the mags

  46. Boys' Life // March 3, 2011 at 4:41 pm // Reply

    PLEASE HELP! Boys’ Life needs to find the October 1911 and January 1912 issues to complete its archives. Search your attics, dig through those old boxes. Surely, somebody must have a copy of these missing issues!

  47. A Scout uses the resources he has and makes due with them. Take whats given to you and make it work and stop complaining about what you do not have. After all this is the Boys’ Life Wayback Machine.
    2009, 2010 is not way back

  48. ok, i can get not having 2011, but why not up to 2010?

  49. someone who used to be a boy scout // February 28, 2011 at 7:53 pm // Reply

    interresting, how come there aren’t any 2009 and 2010 and 2011s?

    • Boys' Life // March 3, 2011 at 4:42 pm // Reply

      We still have a few issues missing, but hopefully they’ll be added soon. Watch for 2009 in the next few weeks.

  50. AWESOME!

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