Into the street the piper stepped,
Smiling first a little smile
As if he knew what magic slept
In his quiet pipe the while.

And the piper advanced
And the children followed.


Eileen K. Wade, The Piper of Pax:
The Life Story of Sir Robert Baden-Powell
, 1924

About Eileen K. Wade

"In 1914 a young girl began her first job as a shorthand-typist at the Boy Scout Headquarters in Victoria Street, London. She was later to become Confidential Secretary to the Founder of the Boy Scout Movement, and to marry Major Wade, then Organising Secretary.

"With the coming of the war that year and the call-up, the author took on new responsibilities, and was soon working closely with the Baden-Powells in their country home. Soon after they bought Pax Hill the Chief found a cottage for the Wades nearby. Mrs. Wade would walk over to Pax Hill, often arriving on the scene at breakfast time, when the mail was opened and the letters passed over to her for reply. She watched his ideas for Scouts develop, as she worked with B.P. on his many books. Many of the best ideas came to him when fishing, or bathing—or shaving, and they would reach her on scraps of paper…."

From the flyleaf of Eileen K. Wade, 27 Years with Baden-Powell, 1957

Eileen Wade served Baden-Powell as Confidential Secretary and assistant until his death in 1941. The Piper of Pax, written in 1924, is an excellent short biography of B-P. It includes an excellent account of his early career in the army and the founding of the Scout Movement. Of special note are many selections from his diaries and his letters to his mother.


THE boys who joined the Scout Brotherhood in 1908 knew their Chief as the Defender of Mafeking. You who are joining to-day only know him as the Chief Scout. You do not remember a time when there was no Chief to sound the call of Scouting, and no boys to follow it.

You are lucky for two reasons:—
First, because you were born late enough to be Boy Scouts. Secondly, because you were born soon enough to be Boy Scouts under Baden-Powell.

Scouting has come to stay, and we hope there will always be a Chief to lead the boys of the world; but between Baden-Powell and any other Chief Scout there will always be a gulf fixed.

There can never be another discoverer of Scouting, any more than there can ever be a second Founder of Christianity. Others may carry on and spread the gospel and keep the flag flying, but they will find the game ready made for them. That is why it has seemed to me that you might like to know something about the life of your Chief.

I want here, on your behalf and mine, to thank all those kind people—Sir Alexander and Lady Godley, Lady Smyth, Colonel W. B. Winwood, Colonel Tom Marchant, Sir H. Seymour King, Mr. T. E. Page, Colonel C. Callwell, Mr. P. W. Everett, the Editors of the Carthusian, the Church Monthly, The Greyfriar, and the Scout, Mr. S. M. Ellis, Mr. E. H. Parry, Messrs. Herbert Jenkins, and many others—who have helped me to make this story as complete as is possible in so small a volume.

Above all, I would thank the Chief Scout and Lady Baden-Powell for allowing me to burrow so freely among the family archives.

June, 1924.

E. K. W.

Baden-Powell, The Piper of Pax: The Life Story of Sir Robert Baden-Powell, 1924

  Chapter VII. Swaziland, Malta and Home. A shooting trip to Knysna—first encounter with an elephant—a mission to Swaziland—an interview with Oom Paul—life in Malta—adventures in many countries—maneuvers in Ireland.
  Chapter VIII. Ashanti. The Ashanti Expedition—experiences of a native levy—the wages of a king the nigh] march to Bekwai—hoisting the British flag— how to avoid fever—Kantankye receives promotion.
  Chapter IX. Matabeleland. Special service again—troubles in Matabeleland—Sir Frederic Carrington arrives—scouting in the Matoppos—the Wolf that never sleeps—the case of Uwini—home with Rhodes.
  Chapter X. Old Places and New Faces. India revisited—Officer Commanding 5th Dragoon Guards—work and sport in plenty—a shooting trip with Sir Baker Russell—on special service to South Africa—ready for war.
  Chapter XI. The South African War, 1899-1902. The declaration of war—beseiged in Mafeking—seven months beseiged—the story of the stamps—food shortage—arrival of the relief column.
  Chapter XII. The South African Constabulary. The hero of Mafeking—Lord Roberts’ despatch—a new job—the South African Constabulary—home at last—an interview with King Edward—appointed Inspector-General of Cavalry.

  Eileen K. Wade, 27 Years with Baden-Powell, 1957.
  The Baden-Powell Library. A Selection of excerpts from the works of Sir Robert Baden-Powell and works relating to his life and career
  Return to the Baden-Powell Home Page

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