History of the Red Men

The Improved Order of Red Men traces its origin to certain secret patriotic societies founded before the American Revolution. They were established to promote Liberty and to defy the tyranny of the English Crown. Among the early groups were: The Sons of Liberty, the Sons of Tamina, and late the Society of Red Men.

On December 16, 1773 a group of men, all members of the Sons of Liberty, met in Boston to protest the tax on tea imposed by England. When their protest went unheeded, they disguised themselves as Mohawk Indians, proceeded to the Boston Harbor and dumped overboard 342 chests of English tea.

During the Revolutionary War, members of secret societies quenched their council fires and took up muskets to join with the continental Army. To the cause of Freedom and Liberty they pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honors. At the end of the hard fought war the American Republic was born and was soon acknowledged among the nations of the world.

Following the American Revolution many of the various secret societies founded before and during the conflict continued to existence as brotherhoods or fraternities.

For the next 35 years, however, each of the original Sons of Liberty and Sons of St. Tamina groups went their own way, under many different names. In 1813, at historic Fort Mifflin, near Philadelphia, several of these groups came together and formed one organization known as the Society of Red Men. The name was changed to the Improved Order of Red Men in Baltimore in 1834.

At Baltimore, Maryland in 1847, the various local tribes came together and formed a national organization called the Ground Council of the United States.

With the formation of a national organization, the Improved Order of Red Men soon spread and within 30 years there were State Great Councils in 21 states with a membership of over 150,000. The Order continued to grow and by the mid 1920s there were tribes in 46 states and territories with a membership totaling over one –half million.

Today, The Improved Order of Red Men continues to offer all patriotic American an organization that is pledged to the high ideals o Freedom, Friendship, and Charity. These are the same ideals of which the American nation was founded. By belonging to this proud and historic organization you can demonstrate your desire to continue the battle started as Lexington and Concord to promote Freedom and protect the American Way of Life.

Goals of the Red Men

To promote patriotism and the American Way of Life, to provide social activities for the members, and support various charitable programs. Our activities include;

  • Flag Recognition Program-A program to honor those patriotic Americans who display the flag regularly
  • Faith of Our Fathers Chapel-Chapel erected at Freedoms Foundation, Valley Forge, Pennsylvania, to memorialize the ideals and principles of our founding fathers.
  • Annual pilgrimage To Faith Of Our Fathers Chapel-Annual meeting to renew and strengthen our beliefs in the American Way of Life.
  • Children with Cognitive, Intellectual, and Developmental Disabilities Program-Support of various projects and programs of the ARC (formally Association for Retarded Citizens) and Special Olympics.
  • Red Men’s Day At Arlington National Cemetery-Annual ceremony to honor our unknown soldiers and all brave Americans who have fallen in battle to protect our Freedom.
  • Red Men’s Week- Week of December 16th, designated as National Red Men’s Week, Commemorating the Boston Tea Party in 1773.