Origin of the Webelos Tribe Story
A Favorite Story
This Story is meant for Webelos scouts.
Decide for yourself if it is appropriate for your younger scouts or not.
a woven leather bracelet made from a single strip of leather for each scout.
a leather medicine pouch for each scout.
s'mores or other snack.
This story/ceremony can be fun at the first campout or campfire your Webelos den does together. The medicine pouches can be used for storing rocks, sticks, animal teeth, feathers, ... found on hikes or from other stories you tell.
Long ago, in the beginning times, the first people had a hard life. Always, it was the same, work the ground, hunt animals, protect family. Many of the people died from the hard life and not many grew old.
Over time, the people slowly grew stronger and learned better ways of life. They learned to work the soil and increased the harvest. They learned to track animals and made powerful hunting tools - the bow, the snare, the net. And they learned to fight when required to ward off invaders or wild predators.
One terrible day, all of the braves were out on a hunting party up high in the mountains to secure food for the coming winter. While they were many, many miles from camp, a fierce, early snowstorm struck. They were completely unprepared and became stuck far into the wilderness.
Back in the camp of the people, the tribe could see the white blanket on the mountains and after waiting several days, they knew that none of the hunters would be coming back. Many began to wail and sing for their dead fathers, brothers, and sons. They also came to realize that without the needed food, they too would perish in the coming winter. This caused them to cry all the more.
There were three young scouts in camp, not yet old enough to be braves - Akela, Baloo, and Bagheera. Being not yet old enough to join the hunting party, they were made to stay behind. As the people grieved, these three boys talked about what they might do. They went out from the people, off onto a hilltop and set up their teepee. They built a small fire and sat around it to discuss what they could do to help their people.
For three days, they talked, argued, and discussed with no sleep or food. Very late at night on the third night, they finally reached their decision and made their plan. To celebrate, they shot a deer, gave thanks to the Great Spirit, and ate their fill. They then started working their great plan.
Baloo stayed at the fire, preparing the deer and working its hide into leather to be used later.
Bacheera went into the woods to gather many days worth of firewood and other items that would be needed.
Akela returned to the people. He went through the camp, finding other boys that were just a bit younger. Into each boy's ear, he whispered that he should come to the hilltop alone on the evening of the next day. He should tell no one that he was going.
The next night, the three scouts were waiting on the hilltop by their campfire. Soon, they saw one, then two, then a handful of boys approaching through the forest. Of the 31 boys invited, only 10 were brave enough to come here alone at night.
(here you can start speaking in the first person for Akela and Baloo as it becomes more of a ceremony than story)
Akela said, "Come! Gather around the fire and hear what we have to say.
The tribe is in danger of dying now that all the men are gone and winter is coming. If no one saves the people, they will all be lost. It is up to us to take over for the men and become the leaders of the tribe. This will mean very hard work and much danger. Those that do not feel they can handle this task should return to the tribe now."
Two younger boys, brothers, stood and said that their mother was very sick and their older brother and father were now gone. They had promised her to stay with her so they had no choice but to return home. So, they turned and left. The rest sat and waited for Akela to continue.
Akela said, "We have been forced into a hard task. But, together, we will learn. We will become strong. We will hunt. We will keep our people alive. We are only considered scouts by the people, but they will see that we are braves and can do a brave's job."
Then, Baloo stood and spoke.
"In the morning, each of you will go out with another scout, taking your bows, knives, and snares. You will stay out for 2 days and then return with food you have killed. You will never leave each other and you will protect each other at all times.
To help protect you, I present each of you with a medicine pouch made from the hide of the first deer killed by our new tribe. This pouch has strong power and will help you. On your travels, use this pouch to keep any totems of strong medicine that you find - things to remind you of your adventures.
(present the medicine pouch to each scout)
To guide your aim, I give you each a bracelet woven from the deer hide to wear on your bow wrist. The three parts are woven together just as your strength, mind, and spirit are woven together."
(present the bracelets)
Akela then addressed the new tribe.
"Tonight, we begin a new tribe. A tribe dedicated to protecting and providing for our people. But, we also teach and share. As other scouts grow, we promise to show them the ways of our tribe and help them learn.
Now, join me in a circle, facing in, close together. Put your left hand straight out in front of you with your thumb pointing to the right. Move in closer and hold onto the thumb of the person to your left to create a complete living circle.
Raise your right hand high to the sky in the sign of the wolf ears.
This is our promise to each other here on this night, alone, away from all others except our own small group and the Great Spirit. Repeat after me:
We'll be loyal to each other.
We'll be loyal to our people.
We'll be loyal scouts!
We're the Webelos tribe!
Now, join me in a feast and then we must rest before our work begins in the morning.
(break out the s'mores or other snack)
You could continue the story the next morning at breakfast or while the scouts are having their snack.
The Webelos hunted, trapped, and gathered for many weeks and stockpiled enough food for winter. They then took the food to the tribe and everyone realized that they would live through the winter. And, even though the men are gone, they will be safe with these new, brave scouts caring for the tribe.
And then, just as the sun was rising (or as the moon was rising) the people heard singing off over the hills, growing louder. Down through the woods came the hunting party, battered and weary, but all alive. They had found a cave and waited out the storm and then waiting for the snow to melt, eating the food they had killed before the storm. But, now they had nothing, and would need to go out again in the few days left before winter.
But, then they were shown the food provided by the Webelos scouts and they are amazed and proud of their sons and brothers!
And the people prospered.
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