Baden-Powell of Gilwell, Robert Stephenson Smyth Baden-Powell, 1st Baron (bāˈdən-pōˈəl) [key], 1857–1941, British soldier, founder of the Boy Scouts. He saw much active service in India and Africa prior to the South African War, in which he defended Mafeking (now Mahikeng) for seven months (1899–1900) and subsequently organized the South African constabulary. For his enduring work in organizing (1908) the Boy Scout and Girl Guide movements, he received a peerage in 1929. His writings include Scouting for Boys (1908), Rovering to Success (1922), and Scouting and Youth Movements (1929).
See biographies by W. Hillcourt and O. S. Baden-Powell (1964), M. Rosenthal (1986), and T. Jeal (1990).