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The Story of Our Name

The vision of our founder
Modern Woodmen of America was founded by Joseph Cullen Root in 1883. From the beginning, Root had a plan for success. He wanted to create a fraternal benefit society that would protect families and their financial futures following the death of a breadwinner, offer more stability than other fraternals of that time and strengthen families, communities and the nation  
Full of ideas, all Root needed was a name for his fraternal society.
A moment of inspiration
During a Sunday sermon, Root heard Reverend Sydney Crawford tell a parable about the good that came from woodmen clearing away the forest to build homes, communities and security for their families. Because this seemed the perfect symbol for Root’s goal of clearing away financial burdens for families, he adopted the term Woodmen.  
To express that his fraternal society would be ever changing to keep up with the times, he added Modern.  

Finally, Root added of America to signify the society’s patriotism and to honor our nation.   

His vision realized
Modern Woodmen of America fulfills Root’s vision, as it symbolizes our commitment to financial security for families, positive family life and service to communities – the common bonds we share.