Honorable Order of the
Blue Goose, International
Adopted in 1931, amended
To prepare the Pond for the Opening and Initiatory
Ceremonies—first of all the National Colors (size not less than 3¼ x 5 feet,
mounted on a staff) shall be prominently displayed. At official sessions of the
Grand Nest or joint meetings of United States and Canadian Ponds, the Colors of
both Countries shall likewise be displayed.
The Stations of the Officers shall be as follows:
The Most Loyal Gander on the North bank ot the Pond, the Supervisor of the Flock
on the South bank, the Custodian of the Goslings on the East bank, the Guardian
of the Pond at the inner entrance, the Keeper of the Golden Goose Egg on the
right of the Most Loyal Gander, the Wielder of the Goose Quill on the left of
the Most Loyal Gander, and the six Guards, three on the Ease bank and three on
the West bank.
Call to Order
The Most Loyal Gander will sound three honks.
Most Loyal Gander: The Officers and Ganders will take their proper stations
on the banks of our Pond and come to order.
Most Loyal Gander: For your information, Ganders,—one honk denotes the
end of a command, or if the Ganders are standing it is
the signal to be seated. At
the sound of two honks, all Ganders will rise.
Most Loyal Gander: Ganders will now rise, face the colors and sing the
first verse of “America.” (In
Canada, sing God Save the King.”)
Most Loyal Gander: Supervisor of the Flock, this Pond is about to be opened
for work and ceremony. You will give the necessary instructions to the Guardian
of the Pond, the Custodian of the Goslings and to the Ganders.
Supervisor of the Flock: Guardian of the Pond, you will guard the inner door
and allow no strange birds to enter without the Key Honk.
Supervisor of the Flock: Custodian of the Goslings, you will ascertain if
all present are Ganders and entitled to mingle with the flock.
Custodian of the Goslings: Supervisor of the Flock, I have mingled with the
flock, collected the Key Honk from strange Ganders and am satisfied that all
present are Blue Geese and entitled to the privileges of the Pond.
Supervisor of the Flock: Ganders, before we proceed further, I am
instructed by the Most Loyal Gander to advise you of the necessity observing the
note of the Sacred Honk, which has been the warning cry of our flock since the
flight of the Blue Goose. It reminds your strict attention and obedience,
and none but your Most Loyal Gander, or one acting for him, is entitled to sound
it. Remember then this warning: When you hear the three successive notes of the
Sacred Honk, observe instant silence, under penalty of banishment from the
Supervisor of the Flock: Most Loyal Gander, your order has been obeyed.
Most Loyal Gander: The water is fine. By authority vested in me as Most
Loyal Gander, I declare the ... Pond of the Honorable Order of the Blue Goose,
International, properly assembled and prepared for work.
Most Loyal Gander: Wielder of the Goose Quill, are there any innocent and
unsuspecting Goslings who have made application for admission to this Honorable
Wielder of the Goose Quill:
I have here the names of Goslings ... who desire to take their first swim in the
Most Loyal Gander: Ganders, you have heard the cries of these anxious
Goslings. The Custodian of the Goslings will provide the materials necessary for
your ballots. Be careful how you vote, in order the best interests of the Order.
Note—If a ballot box is used, the M.L.G. will announce that “white eggs elect and 3 black eggs reject an applicant.” If paper ballots are used. the
M.L.G. will appoint two tellers to act with the C. of G. announcing that 3
negative ballots reject an applicant. The Custodian of the Goslings will pass
the ballot box (or paper ballots) and upon completion of the voting will submit
the result” to the Supervisor of the Flock, then to the
Most Loyal Gander.
Most Loyal Gander: Have all voted? If so, I declare the ballot closed.
Most Loyal Gander: Supervisor of the Flock, how find you the ballot?
Supervisor of the Flock: Most Loyal Gander, I find the ballot satisfactory
Most Loyal Gander: I also find the ballot satisfactory (or unsatisfactory).
Ganders, by your ballots you have elected (or rejected) Gosling(s) ....
Most Loyal Gander: Wielder of the Goose Quill, you will retire, ascertain
the names of all elected Goslings awaiting initiation and report to the Pond. One
Most Loyal Gander: Custodian of the Goslings, you will notify the Guards to
retire to the outer banks of the Pond and escort to our altar any of the elected
Goslings who may desire to take their first swim.
Custodian of die Goslings: Guards, you will fall in, salute the Most Loyal
Gander, receive from him dispensation to leave the Pond, and repair to the rice
fields where you will prepare the Goslings for their first swim. When duly
prepared, you will sound the alarm of four honks.
Note—The Guards will advance to the Altar and give the Blue Goose Salutation. The
M.L.G. will return the Salute.
Note—Guards will retire under escort of the C. of
G. and prepare the Goslings, who should NOT be hoodwinked.
Note—At this time the Wielder will return to the
altar, salute the Most Loyal Gander and make his report, after which the
Supervisor of the Flock will arrange the Ganders in two equal lines, one on each
side of the altar facing the Most Loyal Gander, and instruct them to race front while the Goslings are marching to their
Most Loyal Gander: Ganders, we are about to admit into the Pond several
innocent and unsuspecting Goslings, and it is our duty to instruct them in the
precepts of our Order. To the end that this may be dignified and impressive, the
utmost decorum must be preserved.
Alarm of Four Honks.
Guardian of the Pond: Custodian of the Goslings, there is an alarm.
Custodian of the Goslings: Most Loyal Gander, there is an alarm.
Most Loyal Gander: Custodian of the Goslings, proceed to the entrance of
our Pond, investigate and report the cause of this alarm.
Custodian goes to door, opens it and brings the
Foreman of the Guards into the Pond.
Custodian of the Goslings: What is the cause of this alarm which disturbs the
peace and order of our Pond?
Foreman of the Guards: A venturesome Gosling who desires to take his first swim.
Custodian of the Goslings: Is he of good repute and properly vouched for?
Foreman of the Guards: He is.
Custodian of the Goslings: Has he been informed of the solemn and importance
of the obligation he is about to assume?
Foreman of the Guards: He has.
Custodian of the Goslings: Instruct him to wait with patience the order of
the Most Loyal Gander.
Note—Custodian of the Goslings returns to altar
salutes the Most
Custodian of the Goslings: Most Loyal Gander, an innocent and unsuspecting
Gosling waits on the banks of our Pond, desiring to take his first swim.
Most Loyal Gander: Admit him and conduct him to the center of our Sacred
Note—Ganders will sing the Blue Goose Ode, or a
march may be played, while Gosling march to the
Entrance of the Gosling
(Tune: “On Wisconsin,” Key of G)
On, you Gosling—on, you
To the Pond’s wet rim;
In the water as you oughter
You must take your swim.
Oh! You Gosling—Tender
When your wings are loose,
You’ll be a Gander
In our Old Blue Goose.
Most Loyal Gander: Ganders, the Gosling here presented has been elected by
your unanimous ballot, the only way by which membership in this Honorable
Order can be gained. He was first properly vouched for by two of our fellow
Ganders as being worthy and of good repute. His eligibility to membership has
been passed upon by our Membership Committee. If any Gander knows any good
reason why he should not be initiated, let him speak now, or forever hold his
Gosling, we initiate you
into no meaningless mystery, but into a fellowship, the keynote of which is
“Honor” and the watchword ...
precepts ever to be remembered in your dealings with your fellow Ganders. The
Blue Goose flies high and sure. His care of his fellow Ganders is world renowned
and unquestioned. The wisdom of the Blue Goose is proverbial. This Order of
the Blue Goose typifies one of the oldest precepts of Christianity—The Golden
Rule, which is condensed in our watchword ....
I therefore caution you to
lay deep in your hearts the purpose to do your manly duty by all fellow Ganders
under all circumstances, keeping this clear in your memory: There is no
extenuation for the violation of the cardinal principle of this Order, .... If you
approve of these sentiments, you will each say “I,” pronounce your name in
full and repeat after me:
I, ..., in the presence of
God and my fellow men, do solemnly promise that I will uphold the principles and
traditions of the Honorable Order of the Blue Goose, International, as
imparted to me on this occasion; that I will observe the precept
in all my relations with my fellow Ganders; that I will be loyal to my
God, to my Country, to my family and to my chosen calling. I further promise to
do my part in the necessary work of this Order, to comfort those who have been
afflicted, to send cheer into the sick room, to lift up and strengthen those who
have fallen, and to give welcome and encouragement to the stranger in our midst.
I further promise not to divulge the secret work nor the Key Honk of this Order
to any person or persons not positively known to me to be entitled to them. To
all of this I pledge my sacred honor.
Most Loyal Gander: Gosling, your acceptance of this obligation makes you
one of us, and it remains for me to charge you to always, and to invest you with the Salutation and the Key
Honk of this Honorable Order. The Salutation is used upon entering a Pond in
session, when crossing from one bank to another and in addressing the Most Loyal
Gander. It is made by raising the arms horizontally to right angles with the
body and waving the hands to indicate the flight of the goose. The Pass Word
or Key Honk of this Order is ... which in the obligation you have promised to
Most Loyal Gander: You will
now be conducted to ... for his admonition.
Note—The Admonition should be delivered by the
of the Flock, or by a Gander appointed by the Most Loyal Gander, preferably by a
Past Most Loyal Gander, a visiting Most Loyal Gander, or an officer or past
officer of the Grand Nest.
Gosling, you have honored
this Order and yourself by accepting the responsibilities dictated in our
solemn Obligation. The secrets of the Order have been imparted to you. You have
been instructed in the use of the Salutation. The Most Loyal Gander has
impressed upon your mind some of the high ideals of the Honorable Order of the
Blue Goose and has enjoined upon you the honest observance of our watchword, .... However, the most important section of your initiation
ceremony will be revealed in the Charge which explains the purpose and the
cardinal principles of the Order. I urge you to give your most earnest attention
to the interpretation of these principles so essential to the development of
every Gander who desires to serve this Order and mankind in general. Listen well,
therefore, and later read and practice the precepts incorporated in the Charge,
for in them there is wisdom and a simple but excellent rule of life and conduct.
You will now be returned to the altar, where you will salute the Most Loyal
Gander and await the delivery of the Charge.
Most Loyal Gander: You will now receive the Charge from ....
Charge should be given by a Past Most
Loyal Gander, a visiting Most Loyal Gander, or an officer or past officer of the Grand Nest.
Gosling, it is proper at
this time that you should be instructed in the basic principles upon which this
Honorable Order of the Blue Goose, International, was founded, in order that you
may have, a clear understanding of its purpose.
The Order is not designed
to interfere with the operation of, nor to direct in any manner the business of
fire insurance; but rather to bring together in social and friendly relation
those who compose the great army of Fire Underwriters. No reference is made, nor
distinction created, as to the class of Companies or their modes of operation;
but we are banded together to inculcate character, charity and fellowship.
Your business is a most
honorable one. It possesses greater capacity for the fuller education than any
other human occupation. It is capable of developing the reasonably ideal man.
But it matters not how much you may know of the intricacies of your business nor
how high you may rise in its preferment; your gain is but temporary, your
mission unfulfilled, if you have failed to achieve the cardinal elements of
Character. Charity is one of these cardinal elements and one which is most
needed in the world of affairs. Inculcate, therefore, the spirit of Charity
toward your fellow men, especially those who may be Brothers in this Order. To
this end, it should be remembered that a personal grievance or the
conventional dislike which one man may have for another, should not influence
you to vote against an applicant for membership.
Fellowship is that happy
attribute of the human mind which makes the individual a social creature.
Cultivate fellowship. Receive in the spirit of equality all members of this
This trinity of virtues,
Character, Charity and Fellowship, if practiced throughout your business life,
will aid you in achieving the objects for which this Order was created.
Be firm in Character, broad
in Charity and free in Fellowship, and you will learn how quickly the intensive
sting of competitive strife Is made to vanish through the Brotherhood of Man.
Most Loyal Gander: I now welcome you as Brother Gander. You are to share
the privileges and divide the responsibilities of this Honorable Order. May your
zeal for its cause never waver; may your sympathy with its interests ever grow
deeper; may the bonds forged on this occasion bind us ever more closely together.
Wielder of the Goose Quill,
you will present each of the newly initiated Ganders with the official Blue
Wielder of the Goose Quill, addressing the new
Gander: I present to you on behalf
of ... Pond the official emblem of the Order and I trust you
will wear it with pleasure to yourself and honor to the Order.
Most Loyal Gander: The new Gander will retire to the outer banks of the
Pond in charge of the Custodian of the Goslings, to await further instructions.
Note—Here the Pond may introduce such special
initiation features as their ingenuity may suggest, it being understood that it is not a part of the
official initiation. In this connection, good, clean fun should be encouraged;
but Ponds are cautioned not to countenance anything of a vulgar or suggestive
nature or which might humiliate a candidate.
Most Loyal Gander: Is there anything further that the Flock should know
before we leave the Pond?
Most Loyal Gander: Supervisor of the Flock, what is the first duty of the
Supervisor of the Flock: To ....
Most Loyal Gander: Custodian of the Goslings, what is the last duty of the
Custodian of the Goslings: To ....
Most Loyal Gander: Let us ... in our daily life and strive to inculcate
Character, Charity and Fellowship, with faith that
“He who from zone to zone
Guides through the
boundless sky thy certain flight,
In the long way that I must
Will lead my steps aright.”
Most Loyal Gander: We will now sing the closing ode.
(Tune: “Auld Lang Syne,” Key of G)
As now we part, In ev’ry
Let’s make this promise
To all “Tote Fair”
And do our share
As Ganders always should.
Thus hand in hand,
We take our stand,
To combat each abuse;
Uphold the fame,
Keep pure the name
Of our Order, “The Blue
Note—The ode may be omitted at the discretion of
the Most Loyal Gander.
Most Loyal Gander: I now declare the ... Pond of the Honorable Order of the
Blue Goose, International, adjourned, subject to call in the usual manner.
Ganders, you are dismissed.