Much if it can be found online here:
Dan Beard was instrumental in Scouting...here's a little background.
DANIEL CARTER BEARD had a fun filled boyhood in Cincinnati, Ohio. His ideal men were the frontiersmen who blazed the trails for settlers - men such as Daniel Boone, Davy Crockett, Simon Kenton and Johnny Appleseed (John Chapman).
He was a surveyor and mapmaker and later became an author and illustrator for books and magazines.
Beard published his most popular book "The American Boy's Handbook" in 1882. It was full of ideas for swimming, camping, boat building, fishing and making snow forts.
That is from this webpage that contains references to the begining of Scountind as well as a few other boy's books.
All three of my kidz, including my now married-to-an-Eagle-scout daughter grew up with The Dan Beard book as well as my old scout books. My oldest son now runs a BP station and made both Eagle and Order of the Arrow as well as other accolades. My youngest son should make Eagle this year.
All three - and I - often refer back to the above mentioned books.
I grew up on Ernest Thompson Seton’s “Book of Woodcraft”.