The New International Encyclopædia/Foresters, Ancient Order of

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The New International Encyclopædia
Foresters, Ancient Order of
Edition of 1906. See also Foresters Friendly Society on Wikipedia, and the disclaimer.

FORESTERS, Ancient Order of. A fraternal organization founded in 1745 when a Court of Foresters was established at Knaresborough Castle, in Yorkshire, England. The Order has existed continuously since then, and was introduced into the United States in 1832, by the establishment of Court Good Speed, 201, in Philadelphia. The growth of the Order was slow until 1864, when Court Brooklyn, 4421, was organized. In 1902 the courts numbered approximately 9000, with a total membership of nearly 1,000,000. The Order is one of the largest beneficiary societies in existence, with courts in 36 countries, a reserve fund of $36,000,000, and an income of $6,000,000. Funds are raised by fixed dues, and more than $5,000,000 annually are distributed in benefits.