Daisy was always into something. Naturally curious and creative, and a bit a klutz, she had no shortage of interests and injuries as a child. She wasn’t exactly a troublemaker, yet trouble did arise throughout her life. As a little girl born in Savannah, Georgia right before the breakout of the American Civil War you could imagine what trouble could have found her. Fortunately, her uncle was buds with a certain Union general on a march to the sea, and when Sherman came calling in Savannah, the city’s hospitality – and more importantly, surrender without resistance – saved it and its residents from the infamous burned to the ground fate that places like Atlanta had suffered. Daisy’s family was permitted to take refuge from the rest of the war and some of the South’s recovery from it in Chicago, and as she grew, she expanded her interests throughout the Eastern seaboard and abroad.
Poetry, painting, horseback riding, hunting, and many, many more activities were mastered by Daisy in America and Europe, the latter of which she visited and traveled around to chase a boy. She and this young man, William Low, were married in Savannah in 1886, yet while he was Oxford-educated, Daisy was the one with a more extensive set of experience that she added to constantly. She could worked with her head and her hands in equal measure in numerous fields of art and skill, and she thirsted to learn more. Unfortunately, William only had a literal thirst and knack for accruing gambling debt and and other women.
The couple suffered through a loveless marriage in a tailspin. Divorce laws at the time favored men, and when William had a stroke, Daisy ceased the proceedings of their slow separation for the reason that he could not defend himself. She felt it was the fair and just thing to do to. William died in 1905, and the rotten jerk left her little in his will with most of his wealth going to the woman he blatantly cheated on Daisy with.
Daisy was let down, but don’t think for a moment that that stopped a woman of her fortitude from continuing to seek out new educational experiences. Her continued quest to better herself stretched once more across the pond, where she met a pair of people who had started something she was quite a fan of. Already a major player in charity, Daisy was hoping to give back to others, especially girls with expansive interests like her. In 1911, she met Sir Robert Baden Powell and his sister Agnes. Baden Powell was the founder of the Boy Scouts, and with Agnes had started a branch for females called the Girl Guides. Daisy loved it. She started up groups of Girl Guides near her home in Scotland and later in London, before bringing it all back home to Savannah and the States. As the program grew in size and offerings, it was renamed. Similar to how a girl born Juliette Magill Kinzie Gordon became Daisy, and later Juliette Gordon Low, the Girl Guides she founded in Savannah on March 12, 1912, became the Girl Scouts of the United States of America. Like its formidable founder, the Girl Scouts grew into an organization that embodies eager learning of a variety of life skills. Today, almost 2 million girls participate in the program started by “Crazy Daisy”, and learn about stewardship, community, and self-improvement, and for 107 years, they’ve been doing a lot more than just selling cookies.
Thanks for reading! If you have young girls in your family, be sure to check out Girl Scouts to see if it’s a great experience for them!
Until next week,