The Brownie Scouts Books

The Brownie Scouts Series
by Mildred A. Wirt

The six volume Brownie Scouts Series was written by Mildred A. Wirt Benson and published by Cupples and Leon from 1949 to 1953.  The books follow the adventures of a Brownie Scouts troop and contain many references to the Brownie Scouts and the Girl Scouts.
Titles in the Brownie Scouts Series:

  1. The Brownie Scouts at Snow Valley, 1949
  2. The Brownie Scouts in the Circus, 1949
  3. The Brownie Scouts in the Cherry Festival, 1950
  4. The Brownie Scouts and Their Tree House, 1951
  5. The Brownie Scouts at Silver Beach, 1952
  6. The Brownie Scouts at Windmill Farm, 1953

The main character is Veve McGuire, whose first name mysteriously changes spelling to Vevi in the last two books.  Veve's status as main character is about equal to her friend Connie Williams in the first book, but as the series progresses, Veve takes center stage.  Veve is an impulsive girl who is restless and unintentionally gets herself into difficult situations.  Veve means well, but she acts before she thinks.

This series is aimed at a younger audience than many of the books written by Mildred Wirt Benson but is one of her more captivating series.  Even though the Brownie Scouts are chaperoned by their parents and their scout leader, Miss Gordon, they have many exciting adventures.  Some of the Brownie Scouts' adventures are even similar to those of Nancy Drew.  For instance, in The Brownie Scouts in the Circus, Veve and Connie accidentally get locked inside a boxcar and travel hundreds of miles on a train before they are discovered.

  #1 The Brownie Scouts at Snow Valley                               1949
Veve McGuire feels left out and resentful that her best friend Connie Williams is a Brownie Scout along with five other girls from her class.  Whenever the girls ask Veve to join, she says she isn't interested and acts as though being a Brownie is silly.  Veve is impulsive and restless, frequently getting herself into scrapes.  Connie does her best to watch out for Veve.

The Brownie Scout leader, Miss Gordon, announces that the Brownies will go to Snow Valley with her during the holidays.  The girls are all happy, except Veve, since she is not a member.  One of the other girls catches a bad cold, and Miss Gordon suggests that Veve go in her place as a substitute Brownie.  Veve is thrilled, even though she still doesn't want to join the troop.

The Brownie Scouts at Snow Valley
The Brownies have a wonderful time at the Gordon's home.  They enjoy sledding and hiking and solve the mystery of what happened to Mrs. Gordon's cherished locket.  They also help the poor Stone family have a happy Christmas.  Finally, Veve decides that she want to be a Brownie after all, and is initiated just in time for Christmas.  The Brownies look forward to many future adventures together.
  #2 The Brownie Scouts in the Circus                                  1949
The Brownie Scouts plan to go camping at the Girl Scout camp, but only a few dollars remain in the treasury.  The girls all plan ways to earn money for the trip, including putting on a circus in Connie's backyard.  They earn most of the money they need, but Miss Gordon's wallet is stolen.  Miss Gordon promises to make up the stolen money and so the Brownies leave for camp.

At camp, the Veve, Jane, and Eileen, are assigned to make breakfast on the first morning.  They find it very difficult and ruin a pan of bacon and oatmeal.  Since too many of their supplies were used, Miss Gordon drive to town with Veve and Connie to make several purchases.  Veve and Connie see an old circus boxcar, and Veve impulsively suggests that they go inside.  Unexpectedly, the door is shut, and the train leaves with the girls trapped inside!

The Brownie Scouts in the Circus
The girls are not discovered until the train reaches its destination several hundred miles away.  They must stay with the circus for several days until they can be picked up.  During their stay at the circus, the girls help capture the man who stole Miss Gordon's wallet and receive a reward which more than makes up for the stolen Brownie money.
  #3 The Brownie Scouts in the Cherry Festival                    1950
Restless Veve McGuire finds making a crazy quilt rather tiresome.  The Brownie Scouts plan to sell the quilt to make money, but Veve thinks she can find an easier way to earn money.  Veve searches through the newspaper and spots an advertisement for cherry pickers.  Veve suggests that the Brownies earn money by picking cherries.  Miss Gordon is at first skeptical, but finally agrees to the plan.  Veve and Connie inquire at Mr. Wingate's orchard but are rudely turned away.  The girls have more luck at Mr. Hooper's orchard and begin work the following day.

Veve discovers that picking cherries is not as much fun as she thought it would be and spends more of her time looking around than picking cherries.  Veve learns that Mr. Hooper will soon lose his orchard because his sister's last will leaves it to Mr. Hooper's cousin, Mr. Wingate.

The Brownie Scouts in the Cherry Festival
Mr. Hooper thinks the will was forged, but he cannot prove it without a sample of his sister's handwriting.  Meanwhile, the Brownies plan a quilt show and borrow quilts to display at the show.  They combine the quilt show with a cherry festival and invite many people.  During the cherry festival, Veve makes a surprising discovery that solves Mr. Hooper's troubles and guarantees that he will not lose his orchard.
  #4 The Brownie Scouts and Their Tree House                    1951
Miss Gordon and the Brownie Scouts enjoy walking the trails at the nearby park.  One day while they eat their lunch, Veve and Sunny wish that a tree house would be built by brownie fairies in an old oak tree.  They ask for a door, windows, and even a staircase.  Nobody expects for a tree house to be built for the girls, so everybody is surprised two days later when they return to find a tree house in the old oak tree.

Miss Gordon is uneasy, since the builder is unknown and the tree house is on public property.  However, after the park superintendent gives permission for the girls to use the tree house, Miss Gordon finally agrees that the girls may use the tree house.  The girls put up curtains and display dishes in the tree house.  They make plans to come to the tree house on a regular basis.

The Brownie Scouts and Their Tree House
During the Brownie Scouts' trips to the park, the Brownie Scouts uncover several mysteries.  Why does poverty-stricken Mrs. Myles refuse to accept any charity from nice Mr. Vincent?  Who are the mean boys who vandalize the park?  And who built the tree house for the Brownies?  The Brownie Scouts have many exciting adventures as they learn the answers to these questions.
  #5 The Brownie Scouts at Silver Beach                               1952
The Brownie Scouts begin an exciting stay at Silver Beach by picking up interesting shells and watching the many different sea birds.  Vevi plans to enter a turtle race when she learns that the prize is $10.00.  Vevi convinces Connie to walk with her to a nearby pond to search for a suitable turtle.  The girls are unsuccessful, and get lost in the fog.  While wandering around, they discover a house built like a ship and explore it.

Vevi and Connie meet friendly Captain Tarwell, the owner of the house, who lost his son many years before at sea.  Captain Tarwell helps the girls find their way home.  Another new acquaintance, Raymond Curry, is the disagreeable lifeguard at the hotel.  His son, Jamie, is continually running away from home.  Jamie hints at the reason, but will not disclose it.

The Brownie Scouts at Silver Beach
As the Brownie Scouts' vacation continues, Vevi captures a wounded carrier pigeon whose owner no longer wants it.  Vevi cares for the bird and finally acquires a turtle for the turtle race.  Vevi and Connie accidentally discover Mr. Curry's secret, and Mr. Curry sets them adrift on a boat headed out towards sea.  Quick thinking on Vevi's part saves the day and helps bring Mr. Curry to justice.  All ends well as Jamie plans to make his home with Captain Tarwell.
  #6 The Brownie Scouts at Windmill Farm                           1953
The Brownie Scouts, Miss Gordon, and Miss Mohr, the librarian, help Mrs. Langley plan the annual tulip show.  The plans become complicated when a fast-talking promoter convinces Mrs. Langley to allow him to take charge of the show, a decision that Mrs. Langley quickly regrets.  The promoter, Mr. Piff, approaches Mr. Van Der Lann, owner of a tulip farm, and tries to get him to donate money to the show.  Van Der Lann refuses as he has no extra money.

Meanwhile, Vevi and Connie become acquainted with Mr. Van Der Lann's niece, Hanny, who tells them many things about growing tulips.  Hanny confides that her uncle has a special kind of bulb that she hopes will make him rich.

The Brownie Scouts at Windmill Farm
Vevi notices a strange man loitering near the flower show and on Mr. Van Der Lann's property.  The man asks many questions about Mr. Van Der Lann and his neighbors, as well as a woman named Mrs. Gabriel.  The Van Der Lanns worry that someone might steal the valuable bulbs.  The bulbs do get stolen, but the Brownie Scouts help to recover them and also help investigators crack a smuggling ring.
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