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The Oddfellows

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Table of Contents

Foreword by the Oddfellows' Board of Directors vii Acknowledgements ix Introduction 1 1 Early years 5 I Long gestation, multiple births 5 II Growing up in 'Shock City' 17 III 'Rearing the infant Society' 26 IV Conclusion 32 2 The setting 35 I The development of insurance and saving 35 II Fraternal antecedents and connections 43 III Charity 53 IV Christianity 59 V Travellers and networks 65 VI Conclusion 72 3 Respect and reciprocity 73 I The gift 73 II 'Matters appertaining to the Order which its Rules or customs declare shall be kept secret' 79 III Reputable parades and excursions 87 IV Fraternity beyond the grave 100 V Respectable leaders 106 VI Conclusion 110 4 Citizenship and security 112 I Financial safety 112 II Joining the political nation 126 III The Good Samaritan 132 IV Conclusion 140 5 Administering National Health Insurance, 1912-1948 141 I '9d. for 4d.': Implementing the National Health Insurance Act 142 II 'The needs that remain in a social service state' 173 III Conclusion 183 6 Inside the lodge 185 I Communicating identities and ideas 185 II Structured for learning 191 III 'A peculiar and mysterious awe' 202 IV Debates about ceremony 217 V Conclusion 229 7 Families, fellowship and finance 230 I Families 231 II Siblings and peers 244 III Investment strategies 260 IV Conclusion 283 8 'A mutual, caring Society, but with an up-to-date twist' 286 I Pathfinder 289 II Two centuries of Oddfellowship 301 Appendices 1 Oddfellow membership, 1832-2009 314 2 Glossary of some Oddfellows terms 316 3 Biographical notes 321 4 Conferences, Grand Masters and Secretaries of the Order 327 Notes and references 333 List of subscribers 365

About the Author

Daniel Weinbren has published widely on the subject of friendly societies and fraternal and mutual associations, and in 1999 he established the Friendly Societies Research Group. His publications include books about the First World War, the Royal Small Arms Factory, Enfield, Royal Ordnance Patricroft and people's lives within the Labour Party. He is currently writing a history of the place where he works, The Open University.

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