Independent Order of Odd Fellows



The Independent Order of Odd Fellows (I.O.O.F.) is a fraternal organization derived from English Oddfellows orders of the mid-1700s.

The Patriotic Order in England was followed by the Union of United Orders and the Loyal Order. In 1813, various lodges of the Union Order organized the Manchester Unity of Oddfellows. Several unofficial lodges existed in New York City, but American Odd Fellowship is regarded as being founded in Baltimore in 1819, by Thomas Wildey, and the following year affiliated with the Manchester Unity. Within a few years the new American Lodges separated from the English Orders and formed the Independent Order of Odd Fellows.

Its ladies' auxiliary is known as the Rebekahs. Both the Odd Fellows and Rebekahs have higher branches known as Encampments and Patriarchs Militant.

Today, some branches of the order (i.e. some countries) allow women to join the Odd Fellows itself, leading the Rebekahs to have declined in importance. Also, the higher branches and their degrees are, in some countries, becoming regarded as being of less importance or too time-consuming, and (in those countries) are gradually being abandoned.

The most widely encountered symbol of the Odd Fellows - on signage and gravemarkers - is the three-link chain ("the Chain With Three Links", "Triple Links") with three initials, 'F', 'L' and 'T', one each inside each link, signifying Friendship, Love and Truth.

Odd Fellows Lodges, Rebekah Lodges, Encampments, Cantons & Auxiliaries, Junior Lodges and Theta Rho Girls' Clubs


Grand Lodge of Oklahoma, IOOF
Daniel Barton, Grand Secretary
PO BOX 588
Perry, OK  73077-0588
United States of America

Tel: 580-336-4076
Fax: 580-336-4093

Rebekah Assembly of Oklahoma, IOOF
Evelyn Pyles, Assembly Secretary
PO BOX 15197
Del City, OK  73155-5197
United States of America

Tel: 405-672-1491
Fax: 405-672-8195


Grand Encampment of Oklahoma, IOOF
LeRoy White, Grand Scribe
4309 Cardinal
Edmond, OK  73034-9017
United States of America

Tel: 405-341-1174

GLEA of Oklahoma, IOOF
Dorothy Jones
610 E Park Ave
Tonkawa, OK  74653
United States of America

Tel: 580-628-3035

PM of Oklahoma, IOOF
M D Bridgforth, Adj
PO BOX 850716
Yukon, OK  73085-0716
United States of America

Tel: 405-354-6319

LAPM of Oklahoma, IOOF
Lady Nancy Irvin
106 VonElm Ave
Yukon, OK  73099
United States of America



Family History Research

The Sovereign Grand Lodge does not have information on an individual's Membership in the Order.  However, this responsibility lies with each Jurisdiction (Canadian Province or US State).  To obtain family information, please contact the Jurisdiction directly by following the instructions listed below:

  1. Write to the Grand Lodge or Rebekah Assembly Secretary of the appropriate Jurisdiction (Canadian Province or US State).  See the Jurisdictions Pages on this site for names, addresses, phone & fax numbers and email address - where available.
  2. Information you need to provide is:
    - Name of the individual
    - Town of residence
    - Years of residence
    - Year of death.  A Member may keep Membership in one Lodge and participate in a Lodge of another city as a visitor or Associate Member.

Please keep in mind the following when making your requests:

  •     Odd Fellow or Rebekah Applications do not include information about the applicant's parents.
  •     Each Jurisdiction keeps the annual reports from all of the Lodges under its jurisdiction, for as far back as the records survive.  The annual reports list the current members and dates of membership change, such as when a Member joined the Lodge (by initiation or by transfer from another Lodge) and when a Members leaves the Lodge (by death, resignation, or transfer to another Lodge).  Details, such as what Lodge the Member transferred to or from, are in the Lodge's records.  When a Lodge surrenders its Charter (closes), its records are to be transferred to the Grand Lodge or Rebekah Assembly Office of that Jurisdiction.  If a Lodge amalgamates with another Lodge, its records transfer to the other Lodge.
  •     Searching for a name can take time and the more information provided to narrow the search, the more likely someone will be able to find confirmation of Lodge Membership.




This is a collection of Photographs were taken at the IOOF Home in Checotah. Most of the individuals are unidentified.
Thanks to Pat Kirven Sawyer <> for submitting the photographs!!!!



Page of Children #1 2 Girls with their Dolls
Page of Children #2 3 Children on the Steps of the Home
Page of Children #3 5 children nicely dressed
Little girl with her doll 6 Children and A lady or 7 Children
Leek (Leak) and Delia Man or Boy on Horse Back
Andrew Bullard Ass't Matron; Hellen A. & J.B. Kirven; 2 Visitors
Inez-J.B. Kirven-Bonnie Willy Craig and Maybe his brothers & sister



Checotah IOOF Home 
The following information is based on an article published in a special
Real-estate and Recreation section of the Feb. 24, 2000 issue of the Indian Journal

The home is located on the northern edge of Checotah on land previously owned by pioneer W.E. Gentry.  Gentry and his wife, Sallie offered the 160 acre farm and $5,000 to the IOOF in 1902 for the purpose of establishing a home for the care of orphans and aged.  A three story brick structure was dedicated on April 14, 1903 and was furnished by the local Rebekahs.  The surrounding farm and the home comprised a self-sufficient setting where young people owned and cared for individual stock.  Before free public schools were in existence, children here attended classes conducted within the complex. Additional rooms were added in 1922 and an infirmary was added in 1962.  In its first seventy years of operation the home served a total of 325 adults and 448 orphans..

Today the farm land is leased for pasture except for a portion that is leased to Little League as a complex baseball and soccer fields 

The local Independent Order of Odd Fellows lodge which was chartered in 1895 lost its three-story building in downtown Checotah in a fire that destroyed an entire city block in 1992.  The Rebekahs now meet in the living room of the IOOF Home and the Odd Fellows meet in a new structure dedicated in 1996 on the grounds.

The Home is still in operation, caring for approximately 20 adults.  At present there are no children housed there although facilities are available.

This home has been closed and the buildings sold. The building that was dedicated in 1996 is still in use but not the home.


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McIntosh Coordinator






McIntosh County

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