Letter Re: Old Boy Scout and Girl Scout Handbooks are Available Online

Sir,
For those who don’t have an “old” copy of the Boy Scout Handbook, the 1911 edition is available from Project Gutenberg in a variety of electronic formats.

Also, they have the Girl Scout Handbook, 1920 edition.

There is some overlap with the Boy Scouts handbook, but also much that is unique, especially in regard to care of the home, growing a garden, storing food, outdoor and indoor cooking, and a good section on first aid and home health care. Regards, – Andrew H.

JWR Replies: For any families with teenagers, or pre-teens, I recommend getting hard copies of these books:




Letter Re: Stockpiling Dimes?

Sir,
I have a question what is the metal makeup of dimes [US 10-cent coins]. I am saving the nickels [US 5-cent coins, as suggested in SurvivalBlog, since 2007]. I have a small amount of dimes and was wondering if they are worth saving? – Curtis M.

JWR Replies: Stockpiling dimes would not be wise. See the base metal value data at Coinflation,com. As of Saturday, August 29th, the base metal value of a post-1964 dime is $0.01704, (less than 2 cents) but the acquisition cost fro each coin is the face value of ten cents.

Meanwhile, the base metal value of a post-1945 nickel, is 0.04811, but the acquisition cost is just five cents–nearly its actual base metal worth. So it is quite realistic to stockpile these as an inflation hedge. Unlike pennies, (which require sorting, and it requires a substantial investment to recoup … Continue reading




Two Letters Re: Precious Metal and Base Metal Composition of Foreign Coins?

Mr Rawles,s
My family really enjoys and has benefited from reading your blog. Thank you for putting together such a quality reference site. One topic I have not seen discussed (even after a search of the archives) is whether or not pre-1960s foreign silver coins have any value. As a child, I received a large number of European coins from my grandfather (circa 1920s to 1930s), many of which are silver and a few appear to be bronze. While they have little value to collectors based on condition (I have kept them for sentimental reasons), I would assume that silver is silver and they have some base value. Do you have any opinions or advice regarding using these in a SHTF situation or a suggestion for a reference I could use for more information regarding their silver content? Thank you, – J.S.

J.W.R.;
I was wondering … Continue reading




Letter Re: Bug Out Contingency Planning

[Introductory note from JWR: I normally send detailed letter replies only to their intended recipients, but in this case, I thought that this letter was a great example of terrain and obstacle analysis,a s well as “outside the box” planning, so I’m positing it for the entire SurvivalBlog readership to ponder. Do you have similar plans for off-road mobility, and contingency plans, folks?]

Mr. Rawles,
A note for Diane about her relative living on-post at Fort Riley, Kansas: First thing to obtain if you want to bug out of Ft. Riley is to get a Kansas Atlas & Gazetteer map book from DeLorme. [JWR Adds: These books are a key tool for “Get Out of Dodge” (G.O.O.D.) planning. Get one of these for your state, and if your intended retreat is in another state, for any … Continue reading




Influenza Pandemic Update:

WHO warns of severe form of swine flu. The article begins: “Doctors are reporting a severe form of swine flu that goes straight to the lungs, causing severe illness in otherwise healthy young people and requiring expensive hospital treatment, the World Health Organization said on Friday. Some countries are reporting that as many as 15 percent of patients infected with the new H1N1 pandemic virus need hospital care, further straining already overburdened healthcare systems, WHO said in an update on the pandemic.”

Gregor spotted this in an Australian newspaper: “Swine Flu Spreading at ‘unbelievable’ rate: WHO Chief”

Swine Flu’s Worst Case Scenario: Paranoia or Preparedness?

One company is diligently preparing for the worst case H1N1 Flu scenario with promising results

Fearing flu, Vermont fair cancels all swine events




Economics and Investing:

Brad H. sent this from Capitalism magazine: The Collapse of America? The Dire Message of Mr. David Walker

Detroit sets record for unemployment–28.9% (Thank to Paul B. for the link.)

Items from The Economatrix:

Arnold Holds Great California Garage Sale To Help Economy

How Goldman Sach’s Problems are Hurting You


US Economy: Spending Climbed in July Due to Clunkers Program


Japanese Economy Hit by “Double Nightmare”

Bankers’ Excesses…At Our Collective Expense

Tsunami of Broke and Desperate Americans

Fed urges secrecy on banks in bailout programs (A more accurate headline would be: “Fed Warns The Truth Will Destroy The Economy”)

Japan Unemployment Hits Record High


US Prisoners Get Cash To ‘Boost Economy’

Continue reading




Odds ‘n Sods:

Our friend Tamara posted a link to an article that illustrates that a very large quantity of ammunition can be stored in a relatively small, waterproof space.

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Failing Camouflage 101: Robbery suspect spray-paints face for disguise, dies. He should have listened to the warnings of his Greek girlfriend, Anna Phalaxis. 🙂

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Readers that enjoy finding coupon bargains might find the Coupon Chief web site worth bookmarking. This site is one of the better ones. (There are several others that you can quickly find with a web search,and the links at this SurvivalBlog article.) BTW, I predict that this decade will go down in history as a “penny pinching” one, that will rival the 1930s. Coupon clipping (or should I say more accurately, “coupon printing” or “coupon code copying”, these days), is a great way … Continue reading







Note from JWR:

Today we present another entry for Round 24 of the SurvivalBlog non-fiction writing contest.

First Prize: A.) A course certificate from onPoint Tactical. This certificate will be for the prize winner’s choice of three-day civilian courses. (Excluding those restricted for military or government teams.) Three day onPoint courses normally cost between $500 and $600, and B.) Two cases of Mountain House freeze dried assorted entrees, in #10 cans, courtesy of Ready Made Resources. (A $392 value.) and C.) A HAZARiD Decontamination Kit from Safecastle.com. (A $345 value.)

Second Prize: A “grab bag” of preparedness gear and books from Jim’s Amazing Secret Bunker of Redundant Redundancy (JASBORR) with a retail value of at least $350.

Third Prize: A copy of my “Rawles Gets You Ready” preparedness course, from Arbogast Publishing.

Round 24 ends on September 30th, so get busy writing and … Continue reading




Forest Fires and TEOTWAWKI, by J.B. in Florida

Often in reading survivalist material, one comes across instructions on how to use fire in a camping or retreat setting for cooking, cleaning, sterilizing, and the like.  There is also quite a bit of information on how to protect ones self and belongings from the threat of fire, particularly wildfires.  Much of the information I have found is good information, and will be useful in a The End of the World as We Know It (TEOTWAWKI) scenario.  The purpose of this writing is not to further expound on those things most of us already know, but rather to use us to think about the other ways fire will impact our lives during TEOTWAWKI and look at some possibilities for actions that we should take now.

Without question, fire has played a vital role in shaping every ecosystem in existence on every land today.  That … Continue reading




Economics and Investing:

From Reader GG: Poll: 34% of U.S. Workers Surveyed Have Only One Week or Less of Savings to Cover Expenses if Laid Off from Work. We are a nation of debtors, not savers, and someday that’s going to bite us.


Regulators Shutter Three U.S. Banks, Bringing 2009 Total to 84

Reader A.C. kindly sent all these items that he gleaned from News Max Money News:

Not All Stimulus Needed

Global Recovery Not the Same as Equity Recovery

The Deflationists Just Do Not Get It

Germany and France Not So Hard-Hit by Recession

China Meltdown Could Boost the Dollar

And these two items are courtesy of Karen H.:

Newspaper Slump Deepens and 2nd Quarter Ad Sales Fall 29 Percent

The Weak Dollar is Pushing Energy Prices Higher

Items from The Economatrix:

Continue reading




Odds ‘n Sods:

A reminder that the new Surviving Disaster series premieres on Spike TV on Tuesday, Sept. 1st. Meanwhile, I’ve been enjoying The Colony, on The Discovery Channel (via online streaming–I don’t own a television.) Four full episodes of the latter are still available online.

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Eric S. sent us this every useful link: How to Move Heavy Objects with Simple Tools

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Bill would give president emergency control of Internet. (Thanks to H. for the link.)

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Ben M. flagged this: Fresnel Lens Solar Distiller. JWR Adds this Proviso: Keep in mind that distilled water should be used for no more than a few days, only for emergency drinking water, since it lack crucial minerals for human health!







Note from JWR:

Today we present another entry for Round 24 of the SurvivalBlog non-fiction writing contest.

First Prize: A.) A course certificate from onPoint Tactical. This certificate will be for the prize winner’s choice of three-day civilian courses. (Excluding those restricted for military or government teams.) Three day onPoint courses normally cost between $500 and $600, and B.) Two cases of Mountain House freeze dried assorted entrees, in #10 cans, courtesy of Ready Made Resources. (A $392 value.) and C.) A HAZARiD Decontamination Kit from Safecastle.com. (A $345 value.)

Second Prize: A “grab bag” of preparedness gear and books from Jim’s Amazing Secret Bunker of Redundant Redundancy (JASBORR) with a retail value of at least $350.

Third Prize: A copy of my “Rawles Gets You Ready” preparedness course, from Arbogast Publishing.

Round 24 ends on September 30th, so get busy writing and … Continue reading




Real-Life Inspiration for Preparedness, by K.P.

Background Information:

My interest in preparedness started in earnest really just a few months ago.  Before that, I had been an avid backpacker, rock climber, and other sports which require self-sufficiency and forethought.  I am also a Red Cross volunteer.  I was at hurricane Wilma, and I have done local search and rescue, amongst other things.  This February I was dispatched to the south-western region of Kentucky for the Ice Storms.  What I learned there changed me in a lot of ways.

I was aware of the pending economic collapse, but hadn’t really thought of practical things to do until then.  As a pre-1840s Re-enactor, I was pretty sure I could comfortably live in a pre-industrial setting.  A little hubris, maybe, but at 23 sometimes that goes with the territory.

While we drove into Kentucky, parts of it looked like a war-zone.  Downed trees and power lines, roofs collapsed, the … Continue reading