Ancient Order of Foresters
From Kook Science
|Ancient Order of Foresters|
London United District (Ontario, Canada) version of the AOF emblem.
|Predecessor||Ancient Order of Royal Foresters|
|Successor||Foresters Friendly Society (UK); Foresters Financial (Canada)|
|Purpose/focus||"Friendly society" (mutual benefit, insurance)|
The Ancient Order of Foresters (AOF) was a British fraternal benefit order ("friendly society" under U.K. law), having been formed in 1834 by courts of the Ancient Order of Royal Foresters, with Subsidiary Courts in the United States and Canada. Each local lodge was a Court, under the administration of a Chief Ranger, and the Forester initiation ritual was based on the legend of Robin Hood.
- See our page on Courts of the A.O.F. for index of local courts.
- Ancient Order of Foresters – Initiation Ceremony, stichtingargus.nl/vrijmetselarij, http://www.stichtingargus.nl/vrijmetselarij/aof_r.html
In 1874, a group of courts in the Eastern United States broke away to form the Independent Order of Foresters; and, in 1889, several courts likewise seceded to form the Ancient Order of Foresters of America (AOFA), also known as the Foresters of America. In Ireland, the Irish National Foresters split from their English counterparts in 1877.
In the United Kingdom, the order has become the Foresters Friendly Society, a savings bond and asset management company. In North America, the order has effectively ceased to exist as various High Court jurisdictions dissolved over time.