Wednesday, April 9, 2014

The Improved Order of Red Men Mug: Chas. F. Nolde

This one-of-a-kind shaving mug is painted with a scene around the entirety of the mug. The name "Chas. F. Nolde" is in gilt on the base. The lovely scene, painted with exceptional detail, shows seven indians. In the center, above the name, are four in full headdress sitting around a fire. In the background on a hill, another indian is emerging from a tent, above which is a flag displaying the "TOTE" - Totem Of The Eagle. To the left and right of the central scene are tents, each with an indian in front. Around the handle are two beautiful trees: one coniferous, the other deciduous.

From the Improved Order of Red Men Site:

The fraternity traces its origins back to 1765 and is descended from the Sons of Liberty. These patriots concealed their identities and worked "underground" to help establish freedom and liberty in the early Colonies. They patterned themselves after the great Iroquois Confederacy and its democratic governing body. Their system, with elected representatives to govern tribal councils, had been in existence for several centuries. 
After the War of 1812 the name was changed to the Society of Red Men and in 1834 to the Improved Order of Red Men. They kept the customs and terminology of Native Americans as a basic part of the fraternity. Some of the words and terms may sound strange, but they soon become a familiar part of the language for every member. The Improved Order of Red Men (IORM) is similar in many ways to other major fraternal organizations in the United States.


And what does the T.O.T.E. found on these mean? (Answer: "T.O.T.E.  is a SECRET PASSWORD of the Improved Order of Red Men, known only to members." Yours truly, Regina Jarvis, Admin. Assistant Great Council of the United States, IORM) My published reference says this is "Totem of the Eagle."