The Independent Order of Odd Fellows (IOOF) is a fraternal organization founded in the 1700's in England.
One explanation of the origin of the name states, "That common laboring men should associate themselves together to form a
fraternity for social unity and fellowship and for mutual help was such a marked violation of the trends of the times that
they became known as "peculiar" or "odd", and hence they were derided as 'Odd Fellows.'" The most widely known symbol of the
IOOF is the three-link chain, signifying our creed of Friendship, Love, and Truth.
The Order as we know it today was founded on the North American continent in Baltimore, Maryland, on April 26, 1819. The first
Odd Fellows Lodge in California was established in 1849 in San Francisco. Frequently, in early California, the first law and
order in gold rush camps, and much of the medical care, was supplied by local Odd Fellows.
The Vacaville Odd Fellows Lodge was chartered on March 5, 1859, the year before the Pony Express came to Vacaville and
two years before the start of the Civil War. Since that time the organization has met continuously and has counted among its
membership many of the leading citizens of the day. The Lodge annually donates groceries to the needy at Christmas, buys Thanksgiving
dinners for families in need, and provides scholarships for graduating Vacaville High School seniors.