The Forgotten 1923
National Girl Scout Cookie Drive

According to Girl Scout lore, after years of Girl Scouts selling cookies on a local basis, in 1936 the Girl Scout Cookie program was adopted nationally.

Lost and forgotten was the 1923 national drive to raise funds for the new headquarters - this being funded by Girl Scouts selling cookies. This cookie drive was heralded in the newspapers with photos and information.

​The whole plan was simplicity in itself:

  • The Girl Scout Headquarters in NY issued a simple sugar cookie recipe that all Girl Scouts were to use.

  • It was up to the troops to finance the necessary supplies, and bakeries were noted as donating some supplies.

  • Local bakeries allowed some supervised Girl Scouts to bake in their business

  • Some local gas & electric companies allowed supervised Girl Scouts to bake in their business windows after setting up the needed ovens for the display.

  • Batches were to be baked by the Girl Scouts in batches of a dozen.

  • Special bags with the Girl Scout silhouette were to be used to place a dozen cookies in and sealed.

  • Newspapers announced the locations of the "bake sale", usually a local store.

  • 1 bag of 12 cookies sold for 20 cents, give or take.

Once the bake sale was over, the money raised was to be used to "Buy A Brick" at $10  each to help fund the $439,703 needed for the new headquarters building in New York City. (the exact amount needed varied by newspaper)

Although the bigger cities with larger concentrations of Girl Scout troop had more coverage in the newspapers, it's likely that all Girl Scout troops did their best to help out. Even troops in Hawaii participated.

In the following years, the annual cookie sales continued, but the funds raised were for local Girl Scout camps and other local Girl Scout issues. 

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First Lady Mrs. Coolidge was the honorary president of the Girl Scouts, and was photographed biting into a Girl Scout cookie for the national drive to raise funds for the new Girl Scout headquarters.

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