Open Road Pioneers Club

The Open Road Pioneers Club was launched in October 1927 from the pages of The Open Road For Boys magazine. The club was open to all boys and men who:

  •  have an interest in outdoor life

  • a desire to develop their ability to use and enjoy the land and water trails

  •  and an eagerness to follow in the footsteps of the pioneers who, in blazing the way and in founding our country, lived on intimate terms with nature.

 (1939 Open Road Pioneers pamphlet)

The Open Road Pioneers' Club was patriotic, non-political and non-sectarian. The club had no membership dues, was only loosely organized - local chapters were on their own to format their own outdoor program. Lone Pioneers, who joined alone were also encouraged.


 Motto:  Be Sure You're Right - Then Go Ahead 

Code:  Meet each obstacle-physical, mental or moral- face to face and overcome it.


The official handbook for the Open Road Pioneers' was Deep-river Jim's Wilderness Trail Book. There was a 25 page section devoted to the club.


Open Road Pioneers' membership pin

The Club Undertakes

1) To acquaint each member with the spirit and ideals of the frontier

2) to encourage each member to adopt the principles of courage, self-reliance, honesty, sportsmanship, endurance, progress and co-operation.

3) To teach each member useful things about woodcraft and outdoor life.

4) To familiarize each member wit the natural wonders which are all about him

5) to enlist each member in helping to conserve and increase the fish, the game, the forests and the other natural resource of his locality.


solid copper Open Road Pioneers' pin



The Inner Circle Open Road Pioneer Pin, the highest honor that could be earned. This rank was earned after completing the first 4 ranks, then submitting a request to have his club record reviewed by the national headquarters in Boston, MA. If the member passed a written test, then the 5th rank was awarded.





Although the Open Road Pioneers' did not have a uniform, members were encouraged to wear the emblem (shown right) and ranks on a jacket or sweater.



Emblem of the Open Road Pioneers,

gold silk-screened on navy blue felt.

The first 4 ranks of the Open Road Pioneers' were metal pins in the shape of feathers. Each rank had several tasks. When a single task was completed and gold metal arrowhead shaped pin was awarded. After completing 10 tasks, the rank was earned.

  •  First Level - Trailsman

  • Second Level - Woodsman

  • Third Level - Hunter

  • Fourth Level -  Explorer

These ranks were earned locally.

Club information came through the Open Road for Boys magazine.

Open Road Pioneer Club pages were a part of the Open Road for Boys magazines.


Part of an article by Ed Engle that highlights the Open Road Pioneer Club - 1990


1940 Open Road Pioneers Club Membership Certificate