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Catalog Number WF 0789
Caption Fraternal organization
Description View of a fraternal organization in Anacortes. The badges appear to be Order of the Knights of Pythias Secret Society Triangle pins. This group was one of many fraternities that took root in Anacortes during the 1890s and early 1900s and played crucial roles in the community. Benevolence is one of the principles of the Knights of Pythias, which would explain the "B" on the podium. Fraternal organizations, also known as "secret societies" were an integral part of American society at this time. Men paid into their chosen fraternity and attended meetings often shrouded in secret rituals. When sickness, injury or death struck the member, or his family, the fraternity stepped in to assist. Fraternities provided important social services (support for the elderly, ill, dying, widows and orphans, establishing cemeteries) in the years before Social Security existed, and communities devised publicly funded solutions for societal problems. These lodges included, among other the Oddfellows (IOOF), Eagles (FOE), Masonic Lodge, Elks (BPOE), Ancient Order of United Workmen (AUOW), Knights of Pythias, Woodmen of the World (WOW). There were fraternities for immigrants and union workers as well. SEBRING'S SKAGIT COUNTY ILLUSTRATED in December 1902 stated, "It is claimed that Anacortes, in proportion to her population, is the strongest city in the U. S. as to Fraternal orders; and it is very certain that all of the well-known societies have strong lodges here." See also WF 0074, 0153, 0155, 0284, WF 1196, 1751.
Date 1890s c.
Photographer unknown
Collection Wallie Funk Collection
Subjects Place - Anacortes, WA
Organization - Fraternal
Credit line Donated by Wallie Funk, Wallie Funk Collection
People Unknown
Place Anacortes, WA
Search Terms Fraternal organization
Brotherhood of America
secret societies
social services
Oddfellows (IOOF)
Eagles (FOE)
Masonic Lodge
Elks (BPOE)
Ancient Order of United Workmen (AOUW)
Knights of Phythias
Woodmen of the World (WOW)
Object Name Print, Photographic