d International Black Sheep Society/Fraternal and Grave Marker Acronyms
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Acronyms
International Black Sheep Society Of Genealogists
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The Following Initials are a partial index of many of which are found on Grave Markers across the US and the World. These Fraternal Organizations and Societies are common back to medieval times, and many have evolved into "secret societies", Labor Unions, and Religious entities. Some have criminal reputations, and some have reputations of benevolence, all are an indication of man's desire to belong.

If you know of more Organizations which are not listed, or of more that have existing websites on the Internet, Please contact: Jeff Scism .

Other Sites where information on many of these Organizations and others may be found at

Fraternal Societies- A "Complete" reference of Exonumia

Los Angeles Fraternal Supply Company (Masonic Supplies)

Well Known to Obscure Fraternal Organizations

Frater nal Abbreviations on Gravestones

Fraternal Societies differentiated

Rhode Island US Genweb Page

National Fraternal Congress of America. The member Fraternal organizations are listed at the Bottom of this page. and some as yet unsorted links are below those.

Visit the Rootsweb On-Line Genealogy Lesson on Fraternal Organization History.
Tracing Your Family Tree-Lesson 18



AAONMS

Ancient Arabic Order of Nobles of the Mystic Shrine (Masonic) ("The Shriners")

AASR

Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite (Masonic)

ABA

American Benefit Association

AF&AM

Ancient Free and Accepted Masons

AMD

Allied Masonic Degree

AMORC

Ancient and Mystical Order Rosae Crucis(Rosicrucians)

AMOS

Ancient Mystic Order of Samaritans (see IOOF)

AOF

Ancient Order Of Foresters

AOH

Ancient Order Of Hibernians

AOKMC

Ancient Order Of Knights of Mystic Chain (NRF)*
Ancient Order Of United Workmen

ALOH

American Legion of Honor (NRF)*

APA

American Protective Association

AUM

Ancient Order of Mysteries (MASONS)

AUSA

Association of the United States Army

AUV

Association of Union Veterans

BARE

Benefit Association Of Railway Employees

BAY

Brotherhood of American Yeomen

BFCL

International Order of Rainbow Girls ( A Masonic Auxilliary)

BKA

Benevolent Knights Association (NRF)*

BKofM

Black Knights of Molders

BPOE

Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks

BPOEW

Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks of the World

BofRTM

Brotherhood of Rail Road Track Men

BLE

Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers

BLF&E

Brotherhood of Locomotive Firemen & Engineers

BRT

Brotherhood of Railway Trainmen

CBL

Catholic Benevolent Legion

CKofA

Catholic Knights of America

CMBA

Catholic Mutual Benefit Association

COOF

Catholic Order of Foresters

CTAS

Catholic Total Abstinence Society

CBKA

Commandery Benevolent Knights Association

CCTAS

Crusaders-Catholic Total Abstinence Society

DAC

Daughters of the American Colonists

DAR (NSDAR)

National Society Daughters of the American Revolution

DAV

Disabled American Veterans

D of A

Daughters of America

DoL

Daughters of Liberty

DAN

Daughters of the Nile (Masonic)

DOKK

Dramatic Order Knights of Khorassan (Knights of Pythias)

DOLLUS

Dames of the Loyal Legion of the United States

DUV

Daughters of Union Veterans of the Civil War

ECV

E Clampus Vitus

EAU

Equitable Aid Union

EBA

Emerald Beneficial Association (NRF)*

FAM

Free and Accepted Masons

F&AM

Free and Accepted Masons

FCB

Knights of Pythias

FLT

Independent Order of Odd Fellows

FOE

Fraternal Order of Eagles

FOAST

Fraternal Order of Alaska State Troopers

FOF

Fraternal Order of Firefighters

FOP

Fraternal Order of Police

GALSTPTR

German American Legion of St. Peter

GAR

Grand Army of the Republic

GLAUM

Grand Lodge Ancient Order of Mysteries- Masonic Order

GLDS

Grand Lodge Daughters of Scotia

GUOOF

Grand United Order of Odd Fellows

HZ

Haro Zaro

IBBH

International Brotherhood of Blacksmiths and Helpers

ICBU

Irish Catholic Benevolent Union

IHSV

Red Cross of Constantine

IOA

International Order of Alhambra

IODE

Independent Order, Daughters of the Empire

IOGT

International Order of Good Templars

IOH

Improved Order of Heptasophs

IOHH

International Order of Hoo-Hoo

IOI

Independent Order of Immaculates

IOKP

Independent Order of Knights of Pythias

IOOF

Independent Order of Odd Fellows

IOOF-PM

Independent Order of Odd Fellows, Patriarchs Militant

IORG

International Order of Rainbow Girls ( A Masonic Auxilliary)

IOStL

Independent Order of St. Luke

IOF

Independent Order of Foresters

IORM

Improved Order of Redmen (Sons of Liberty)

IOR

Independent Order of Rechabites

IOF

Independent Order of Foresters

IOOF

Independent Order of Odd Fellows

IOJD

Independent Order of Job's Daughters

IORG

International Order of Rainbow Girls (Masonic)

IOV

International Order of Vikings

ISH

Independent Sons of Honor

IUOM

Independent United Order of Mechanics

IWW

Industrial Workers of the World

ISDA

Italian Sons and Daughters of America

JOAM

Junior Order of American Mechanics

JOUAM

Junior Order of United American Mechanics

JOUAM

Junior Order-Order of United American Mechanics

KC

Knights of Columbus

KGC

Knights of the Golden Chain

KGC

Knights of the Golden Circle

KGE

Knights of the Golden Eagle

KGL

Knight Grand Legion

KLH

Knights and Ladies of Honor

KM

Knights Militant (See KKK)

KofC

Knights of Columbus

KofFM

Knights of Father Matthew

KFM

Knights of Father Matthew

KofH

Knights of Honor (NRF)*

KOL

Knights of Labor

KofL

Knights of Loyola

KM

Knights of Malta (Masonic)

KMC

Knights of the Mystic Chain (NRF)*

KOTM

Knights of the Macabees

KPC

Knights of Peter Claver

KofTM

Knights of the Macabees

KP

Knights of Pythias

KofP

Knights of Pythias

KSC

Knights of St. Columbkille

KG

Knights of St. George

KSTG

Knights of St. George

KSTI

Knights of St. Ignatius

KofSJ

Knights of St. John

KSTJ

Knights of St. Joseph

KSL

Knights of St. Lawrence

KSTM

Knights of St. Martin

KofSTP

Knights of St. Patrick

KSTP

Knights of St. Paul

KSTP

Knights of St. Peter

KSTT

Knights of St. Thomas

KofSTW

Knights of St. Wenceslas

KT

Knights of Tabor

KofT

Knights of Tabor

KT

Knights Templars (Masonic)

KWM

Knights of Wise Men

KGE

Knights of Golden Eagle

KHC

Knights of Holy Cross

KKK

Knights of Klu-Klux Klan

KOTM

Knights of Macabees

KSF

Knights of Sherwood Forest

LAOH

Ladies Ancient Order of Hibernians

LDG

Independent Order of Foresters

LGAR

Ladies of the Grand Army of the Republic

LKofA

Loyal Knights of America

LOL

Loyal Order Orange Lodge (The Orange Order){Orange Men}

LOM

Legion of the MOOSE

LOOM

Loyal Order of the MOOSE

LOVUS

Legion of Valor of the United States

MBS

Mutual Benefit Society

MOLLUS

Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States

MOOSE

Loyal Order of the Moose

MOPH

Military Order of the Purple Heart

MOVPER

Mystic Order of Veiled Prophets of the Mystic Realm (Grotto) (Masonic)

MRA

Royal Arcanum

MCL

Marine Corps League

MWA

Modern Woodmen of America

NCOA

Non-Commissioned Officers Association (Military Society)

NEOP

New England Order of Protection

NOK

New Order Knights (see KKK)

NL

Navy League

NSDAR

National Society Daughters of American Revolution

NSSUP

National Society Sons of Utah Pioneers

NU

National Union

OofA

Order of Amaranth (Masonic)

OCF

Order of Chosen Friends

OofUF

Order of United Friends

OGC

Order of the Golden Cross

ODHS

Des Schwestern Verbandes (Sisters of the Federation

OES

Order of the Eastern Star

OSC

Order of Scottish Clans (St. Andrew's Societies)

OUAM

Order of United American Mechanics

PFofA

Patriotic Friends of America

PH

The Order of Patrons of Husbandry (The Grange)

PM

Patriarchs Militant (Independent Order of Odd Fellows)

POSA

Patriotic Order of the Sons of America

RA

Royal Academy

RA

Royal Arcanum

RAM

Royal Arch Masons

RBP

Royal Black Preceptory (AKA: Royal Black Knights)
(Masonic)
photo

RC

Republican Club

RNA

The Royal Neighbors of America

RSGF

Royal Society of Good Fellows

RSM

Royal and Select Masons

ROJ

Royal Order of Jesters (Masonic)

RSTV

Rite of St. Vaclara (NRF)*

RSTV

Rite of St. Vita

RK

Roman Knights (NRF)*

RTT

Royal Templars of Temperance

SAR

Sisters of the American Revolution

SAR

Sons of the American Revolution

SBCL

Saint Bonifazius Catholic Union (NRF)*

SBL

Society B. Lafayette (NRF)*

SCV

Sons of the Confederate Veterans

SofE

Sons of England

SMAA

Scandinavian Mutual Aid Association

SNA-AUM

Shrine of North America

SR

Scottish Rite (Masonic Order)

SofSt.G

Sons of St. George

ST

Sons of Temperance

ST.G SoNY (St. Georges Society of New York)

St. George's Society of New York

SUVCW

Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War

SV

Sons of Veterans of the United States of America

TCL

Tall Ceders of Lebanon (Masonic)

THT

Temple of Honor and Temperance

TPLF

Temple of Honor and Temperance, IOOF

TROA

The Retired Officer's Association

UAOD

United Ancient Order of Druids

UCV

United Confederate Veterans

UDC

United Daughters of the Confederacy

UFL

Union Fraternal League

UFM

United Friends of Michigan

UOPF

United Order of Pilgrim Fathers

VFW

Veterans of Foreign Wars

WKSC

White Knights of the Southern Cross (See KKK)

WOW

Woodmen of the World

X

Ancient Mystic Order of Samaritans: (Association of the IOOF)

YMCA

Young Men's Christian Association

YWCA

Young Women's Christian Association

*(NRF)

NO Internet References Found
Aid Association for Lutherans
American Slovenian Catholic Union
Catholic Aid Association
Catholic Family Life Insurance
Catholic Knights Insurance Society
Catholic Order of Foresters
Concordia Mutual Life Association
Croatian Catholic Union of USA
Croatian Fraternal Union of America
CSA Fraternal Life
Degree of Honor Protective Association
Employe's Mutual Benefit Association
Equitable Reserve Association
Federation Life Insurance of America
First Catholic Slovak Union of USA and Canada
Greater Beneficial Union of Pittsburgh
Independent Order of Foresters
Modern Woodmen of America
National Catholic Society of Foresters
National Mutual Benefit
Police and Firemen's Insurance Association
Polish National Union of America
Polish Roman Catholic Union of America
Royal Neighbors of America
Slovak Catholic Sokol
Slovak Gymnastic Union Sokol of the USA
Slovene National Benefit Society
U.S. Letter Carriers' Mutual Benefit Association
Western Fraternal Life Association
William Penn Fraternal Association
Woman's Life Insurance Society
Woodmen of the World Life Insurance Society
Workmen's Benefit Fund



Initials after ancestors' names may provide useful information. The following list includes initials you may come across when reading old wills or other documents. From: Mark Sutherlin mark@sutherlin.com
a.a.s. died in the year of his/her age (anno aetitis suae) ( 86 y/o died in year 86)
d.s.p. died without issue (decessit sine prole legitima)
d.s.p.l. died without legitimate issue (decessit sine prole mascula supersita)
d.s.p.m.s. died without surviving male issue (decessit sine prole mascula supersita)
d.s.p.s died without surviving issue (decessit sine prole supersita)
d.unm died unmarried
d.v.p. died in the lifetime of his father (decessit vita patris)
d.v.m. died in the lifetime of his mother (decessit vita matris)
Et al and others (et alia)
Inst present month (instans)
Liber book or volume
Nepos grandson
Nunc Nuncapative will, an oral will, written by a witness
Ob he/she died (obit)
Rel. or Relict widow or widower (relicta/relictus)
Res. or Residue widow or widower
Sic so or thus, exact copy as written
Testes witnesses
Ult late (ultimo)
Ux or vs wife (uxor)
Viz namely (videlicet)

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