N.C. I.O.O.F.


Above is a postcard showing an Odd Fellows’ Lodge in Beaufort, NC.  It turns out we’ve got a lot of materials relating to various secret societies and fraternal orders in North Carolina, including the Independent Order of Odd Fellows.  Interestingly, the card mentions that the lodge is over a hundred years old, which places the construction of the lodge to  ca. 1805-1815.

Below is an excerpt from the inside of the front cover of the “Ritual of a Subordinate Lodge under the Jurisdiction of the Sovereign Grand Lodge of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows,” published by the I.O.O.F. in 1908 (VC097 O22r).  While it was used in the Centennial Lodge of Elm City, it dates to roughly the same time the postcard was created.


4 thoughts on “N.C. I.O.O.F.”

  1. In New Bern shortly after the Civil War, black citizens founded an early black chapter of the I.O.O. F. Also what was probably the first black chapter of the Grand TEmplars (big on temperance). Do you have any memorabilia from these or, for that matter, from King Solomon Masonic Lodge in New Bern, the first black Masonic lodge in NC, founded in 1865 or 1866?

    For a study on African American artisans in New Bern, I’d love to find anything on such topics.

    Catherine Bishir

  2. Catherine, I can’t speak for the NCC as a whole, but I’ve never seen anything from those three — in fact, the only North Carolina black fraternal badge I’ve found was from an Elks (IBPOEW: Improved Benevolent Protective Order of the Elks of the World) temple in Charlotte.
    Black memorabilia of all kinds was scarce until the civil rights movement inspired an outpouring of pinback buttons, posters, handbills, etc.

  3. I am wondering if you have any information regarding a lodge that was in Graham (Alamance County) North Carolina? My research indicates there was a Lodge No. 3386 Odd Fellows, named Happy Retreat of North Carolina sometime after 1896. It was torn down in 1934 but during that time a black congregation of the Presbyterian Church was allowed to be built on the land of the lodge. I suspect my great great grandfather was a part of the founding of that church but I need more information about the Fraternal Lodge since I am at a dead end.

  4. Hello I’m 15 years old and am looking to seek more information about my items I recently picked up at a auction. I have a MAA (Masonic Aid Association) 1890 book about insurance and court and stuff. Also I have a what looks like a insurance booklet on a 1908-1909 card.

    If you have any information call/text me: (276)237-3341


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