Collier's New Encyclopedia (1921)/Military Order of Foreign Wars
MILITARY ORDER OF FOREIGN WARS, an American organization founded in New York, Dec. 27, 1894, by veterans and descendants of veterans of one or more of the four foreign wars which the United States had been engaged in, to wit: The War of the Revolution, the War with Tripoli, the War of 1812, and the Mexican War. By an amendment to the constitution all American officers who participated in the war with Spain in 1898 are rendered eligible to membership as veteran companions. Members are entitled "companions" and are either "veteran companions" or "hereditary companions." The former are commissioned officers of the army, navy, or marine corps of the United States who participated in any of the foreign wars of the United States. The latter are direct lineal descendants in the male line only of commissioned officers who served honorably in any of the said wars. The National Commandery was instituted March 11, 1896, by the officers of the New York, Pennsylvania, and Connecticut commanderies. In 1914 there were 1,500 companions, leading officers of the army and navy.