Arctic Brotherhood
Initiation Ritual


The Regalia of the Brotherhood shall consist of a parka, the hood trimmed with white fur. The officers' parkas will be as follows:
P. A. C.—Royal purple, the hood all white.
A. C.—Royal purple, hood trimmed with white fur.
V. A. C.—Blue,
A. Chap.—Black,
A. Ree.—Golden Yellow,
K. of N—Golden Yellow,
A. C. C.—Green,
A.T. G—Red,
A. T. B.—Red,
K. of I. T. G.—Brown,
K. of O. T. G.—Brown,
The Queen's garb shall consist of a high pointed cap with cape attached, a short skirt, leggings and moccasins. The cap, cape and skirt of purple with gold trimmings.


Opening the Camp
Promptly at the time stated for opening the camp, if a quorum be present, the Arctic Chief shall assume his station and give one rap with the prospector's pick, at the sound of which there shall be silence, and say:
Arctic Chief:
Officers you will please assume your stations.
Arctic Trail Guide, report at this station and give me the grip and passwords. After receiving them the A. C. says: They are correct. Now give the salutation of an Arctic Brother.
A. C.:
Are all the officers at their stations?
A. T. G.:
They are.
The Arctic Trail Guide gives the salutation standing in front of the altar.
A. C.:
You will now corral the brothers in camp and see that there are no cheechacos present.
The Guide takes up the grip and passwords from those present, returning to the altar where he reports as follows, and then assumes his station:
A. T. G.:
Arctic Chief, I find that all present are in possession of the grip and passwords.
A. C.:
Keeper of the Inner Tollgate, inform the Keeper of the Outer Tollgate that we have opened a Camp of the Arctic Brotherhood, and to allow none to enter not in possession of the proper password.
Brothers you will now give attention to the opening invocation by the Arctic Chaplain.
The Arctic Chief gives three raps, when the members all rise and the Arctic Chaplain repeats the following:


O, Jehovah!
Creator and Ruler of the Universe; Source and Head of the common Brotherhood of Man, we recognize Thee as the Supreme Director of the destinies of the Arctic Brotherhood. We look to Thee for guidance. Thou art our Supreme Head. As the Great Elder Brother, lead each Arctic Brother by the hand. In mountain torrents hold him up, and give him strength and courage to surmount the obstacles of mountain passes, and overcome the difficulties which beset every trail to the goldfields of our Northland. Give him the clear and piercing eye of the American eagle, that he may discover the hidden golden treasure; and the strength and prowess of the British lion, that he may secure and guard such treasure to his personal benefit; the mutual advancement of the Brotherhood; the honor of the respective nations, and the glory of God. If a brother falls, gently raise him up; if he fails, endue him with fortitude to bear his failure patiently, and furnish him with the boldness and persistence of the Polar bear, that he may face the inevitable and prevail at last. Amen.
Members all repeat:
A. C.:
I now declare … Camp No. … open for the regular dispatch of business.
The Arctic Chief gives two raps, when all will be seated.
Regular order of business, as laid down in the By-Laws, is then taken up.


Arctic Chief:
Arctic Trail Guide you will retire and ascertain if there are any cheechacos in waiting.
The A. T. G. retires and takes the names of those awaiting initiation. Returning to the altar he reports the same to the A.C.
A. C.:
Arctic Trail Guide, you will retire and introduce the cheechaco(s).
While the Guide is in the ante-room, the Alchemist prepares his station, and the room is darkened. All being in readiness the K. of I. T. G. notifies the Guide, who, with the cheechacos in line if there are more than one, gives the raps on inner door.
K. of I. T.:
Who comes here?
A. T. G.:
The Arctic Trail Guide with (a) cheechaco(s) traveling toward the north.
K. of I. T.:
Arctic Chief, the A. T. Guide with (a) cheechaco (s) demands admission.

A. C.:
Mush on.
Members all say "Mush on" as the candidate enters.

The Guide conducts the cheechaco(s) around the hall and as he reaches the station of the Alchemist the second time that officer says:
Halt; who goes there?
A. T. G.:
The A. T. G. with cheechaco(s), travelling towards the north.
Brother A. T. G., have all the investigations as to the fitness of this (these) candidate(s) to mush over our trail been concluded to your satisfaction?
A. T. G.:
They have.
Then I will kindle the torch and light him (them) on his (their) way.
Cheechaco(s), gaze upon this emblem as it boldly stands out from the uncertainty of the dark. May its guiding rays reflect and carry to your heart the true interpretation of dignified simplicity upon which our Order is founded.
Near Skagway’s shore, where our Order's cradle rocked, high upon mountain top the magic hand of the Great Spirit of the North chiseled these letters in gigantic outline, And as these letters, enhanced by the rays of an evershifting Aurora Borealis, flash their greetings far out upon the emerald waters of Lynn Canal, likewise does this simple emblem carry a world of meaning to the hearts of those who have learned to fully conceive our Order's significance and mission.
Cheechaco(s), traveler(s) to the North, you have chosen our trail as yours; a new sphere will open before you. Over yonder trails and passes the outstretched hands of all Arctic Brothers will greet you in heartfelt welcome. I bid you God speed. Keep the trail. Mush on!
The Guide then continues the march, halting in front of the station of the Arctic Chief, who says:
A. C.:
Who is the man that disturbs a meeting of the Arctic Brotherhood?
A. T. G.:
A cheechaco (or Cheechacos) travelling toward the north.
A. C.:
Many cheechacos from below, lured by dreams of golden wealth, and seeking the realization of those dreams have come into this country; men unfitted for the country and totally unable to adapt themselves to its conditions. Far better for them had they remained at home, or upon their arrival at this camp, and learning of the difficulties to be encountered, had even then turned back. None but hardy and vigorous constitutions can cope with the elements of this country. None but brave and determined men can accomplish the journey over our northern trail. Such men, and such men alone, are admitted to fellowship in the Arctic Brotherhood; and that we may protect ourselves against the intrusion of unworthy associates, it is our custom so submit to a test the strength and endurance of all cheechacos who apply at this camp.
Are you willing to submit to such tests?
Candidate answers.

Before making these tests it is necessary for you to take an obligation not to reveal anything you may have seen, heard or learned while in this camp. Rest assured that there is nothing in this obligation that will conflict with your civil or religious liberty.
Are you willing to take this obligation?
Candidate answers.

Arctic Trail Guide, you will conduct the cheechaco(s) to the Arctic Chaplain.
The Guide conducts the cheechaco(s) to the altar facing the station of the Arctic Chief, who says:
A. C.:
I congratulate the camp upon having elected this worthy citizen to membership in the Brotherhood. If there is no objection the obligation will now be administered. If any member has an objection he shall now declare it or forever after hold his peace.
Here follows an impromptu accusation against the cheechaco, or if more than one, against one of them, by a member previously selected. Care should be taken not to wound the feelings of the cheechaco of to act in an undignified manner. The cheechaco(s) is then conducted to the ante-room, and if there are more than one the rest are seated in the Camp. Lights are then turned on, and the appointment of a committee to investigate, with necessary motions and instructions, is given in a loud tone; the committee takes a position near ante-room door and also speaks so the accused may hear. He is then brought in and allowed to make his statement. The committee then reports the charges as "frivolous and not sustained"; and the brother making them apologizes and offers the hand of friendship. The A. C. makes a few extemporaneous remarks, and says:
A. C.:
Arctic Trail Guide, face the cheechaco(s), toward the station of the Vice Arctic Chief.

Candidate(s) about face(s).

A. T. G.:
Vice Arctic Chief, by direction of the Arctic Chief, I present this cheechaco (or these cheechacos.)
V. A. C.:
Cheechaco(s), there is an important lesson in the initiation which it is the object of this Brotherhood to thoroughly impress upon its members. We in this northland are gathered from distant communities, and thrown together under most peculiar conditions. It is true that we are a restless and energetic people. These very qualities carry with them a proneness to be arbitrary, opinionated, and obstinate, leading us to evoke either force or legal suits to settle our differences.
The accusations brought against you at the eleventh hour of your initiation were purposely false, and covered with honeyed words, the better to liken them to those in actual daily life, and to teach you that under all circumstances, it is well to first meditate in solitude and humbleness upon the course to pursue; and, if after so meditating, you are convinced that the charges brought against you will affect your standing in the community or the Brotherhood, you will place your case in the hands of disinterested men to act as arbitrators.
Remembering that—
"Through the travels of the many
Works Justice her decree;
That fallen right shall rise again,
And the wrong shall righted be."

Arctic Trail Guide, present the cheechaco(s) to the Arctic Chaplain.
The Arctic Trail Guide causes the cheechaco(s) to about face, and addressing the Arctic Chaplain, he says:
A, T. G.:
Arctic Chaplain, by direction of the Vice Arctic Chief I present this cheechaco (or these cheechacos) that he (they) may give his (their) pledge of honor.
The Arctic Chaplain rises and goes to the altar, faces the cheechaco(s), and says:
A Chap.:
Cheechaco(s), place your right hand upon the gold pan, the emblem of our order, and the left hand over your heart(s).
The Arctic Chief gives three raps, when the brothers all rise and form a circle around the altar, their open hands extended toward the cheechaco, in which position they remain until the conclusion of lecture by the Past Arctic Chief.
When the circle has been formed, the Arctic Chaplain repeats the obligation.
A. Chaplain.:
Cheechaco(s), you will use your name(s) where l use mine, and repeat after me:
I, …, do solemnly promise, should I be able to endure the tests about to be applied, I will never reveal the grip, sign or password, or any of the secrets or mysteries of the Arctic Brotherhood. I will cheerfully perform all duties assigned to me, and do all in my power to promote the best interests of the Brotherhood and will conform to all the requirements of its constitution and laws. I will never lead a brother Arctic on any false stampede, or make to him false reports of new discoveries. I will always give a brother Arctic preference in buying, trading or employing, everything else being equal. The latch string shall always be outside my door to a brother Arctic, and with him I will share the comforts of life, and give him shelter free, if for the time being he be short of funds. I will guard and protect the virtue of all women and particularly those who may be related to an Arctic Brother by ties of blood or affection. I will never in dissolving partnership with a Brother Arctic cut a stove in two or split a tent. I will never kick a dog, or work a horse with a sore spot on his back. To all this I pledge my honor.
All brothers:
The Arctic Chaplain steps to the left and rear, remaining inside the circle, and the Past Arctic Chief advances to the altar, faces the cheechaco(s), and says:
P. A. C.:
Cheechaco(s), you will notice the position of the brothers—their open hands extended. There is no part of the ritual of this Brotherhood but what is designed to carry its lesson, and all these lessons it is your duty to well and truly learn. The attitude of the brothers in this ceremony offers to you the open hand of fellowship; aid when overtaken by distress, and ready sympathy in time of sorrow. It is the attitude of a miner panning his claim, and should remind you to wash from your life all the dross of selfishness, and thus show to the world the clear gold of those cardinal virtues, which are the glory of true manhood and true brotherhood. The hands of Arctic Brothers, and also their hearts will always be toward you so long as you follow in the trail of manly virtue this Brotherhood has broken tor you. When you depart from it the extended hand of fellowship will be withdrawn, and the brothers will turn their backs on you.

The members face about as the last word is uttered.
The Arctic Chief then gives one rap when all go to their seats, except the Arctic Trail Guide who, with the cheechaco(s) remain at altar.
A. C.:
Arctic Trail Guide, conduct the cheechaco(s) outside the inner tollgate and properly outfit him (them) for his (their) journey over the trail.
The cheechaco(s) is (are) conducted outside the inner tollgate where he (they) is (are) prepared for the journey.
In the meantime the paraphernalia for the floor work is prepared; the Camp Cook arranges his station, and the Arctic Queen retires to be robed. (If there is but one ante-room, the Queen can make use of that while the cheechaco(s) is on his journey.)
When all is prepared the A. C. directs the K. of. I. T.
G. to notify the A. T. G. that all is in readiness.
The Guide then gives the raps which are answered by the K. of I. T. G., who says:
K, of I. T. G.:
Who comes here?
A. F. G.:
A cheechaco on his way north.
K. of I. T, G.:
Arctic Chief, a cheechaco on his way north seeks to pass 'the tollgate. He is in company of our Arctic Trail Guide.
A. C.:
Mush on.
The tollgate is opened and all repeat "Mush On," as the Guide conducts the cheechaco in. He is taken to station of A. C. where the A. T. G. says:
A. T. G.:
Arctic Chief, I present a cheechaco who is travelling to the north, and he desires permission to mush over our trail.
A. C.:
Is he properly shod?
A. T. G.:
He is not.
A. C.:
Then prepare him.
A. T. G.:
Arctic Chief, the cheechaco is properly shod and in no danger of slipping on the icy trail.
A. C.:
Has he his wristbands on?
A. T. G.:
He has not.
A. C.:
See that he has them on.
A. T. G.:
Arctic Chief, your order has been obeyed.
A. C.:
Is the cheechaco capable of drawing a sled or packing an outfit?
A. T. G.:
I think he is, Arctic Chief.
A. C.:
Then submit the tests.
A. T. G.:
Arctic Chief, the cheechaco has proven his ability to mush over smooth and level ice.
A. C.:
Place a pack upon him and let him continue his journey to the summit.
A. C.:
You must now be presented to our Arctic Queen. Arctic Trail Guide is he presentable?
A. T. G.:
He is not.
His face is dirty.
A. C.:
Brothers, do you wish to incur the displeasure of Her Iceness, our Arctic Queen, by presenting a cheechaco whose face is dirty?
The members cry:
A. C.:
What is your pleasure.
The members:
Cleanse him.
A. C.:
Let him be cleansed.
A. T. G.:
Arctic Chief, the cheechaco is cleansed.
Cheechaco, before the ceremony of presenting you to our Queen, it is necessary to assure her Iceness on one or two points. Do you promise to answer truthfully the questions I shall propound?
Cheechaco answers.
The A. C. then asks the following questions, to each of which the cheechaco answers:

Are you married or single?
What is your nationality?
Have you ever violated any of the laws of your country to the extent of liability to arrest?
Are you a member of any other secret society?
A. C.:
Arctic Trail Guide, announce to Her Iceness, our Arctic Queen, the answers to these several questions, and inform us of her pleasure.
A. T. G.:
Arctic Chief, I have informed Her Iciness of the responses made by the cheechaco, and she sends notice that she will now enter with her royal bodyguard to receive him in due and ancient form.
The A. C. gives three raps; all rise as the Queen and her bodyguard enter, the members sing the


Camp Anthem
Hail, to our Arctic Queen;
Fairer there ne'er has been;
Hail to the Queen,
Hail to her Iciness!
Hail to her Mightiness!
She cometh now our camp to cheer.
Hail! Arctic Queen!

A. C.:
Her Iciness is pleased with your answers to my questions, and signifies her desire that you be sealed to the camp. The A. T. G. will now place you in position to receive this honor from her hands.
The A. T. G. blindfolds the cheechaco and causes him to kneel on both knees before the Queen.
A. C.:
Before Her Iciness places upon you her royal seal that will forever bind you to the Brotherhood, she desires me to ask two important questions I overlooked.

Are you a true patriot?
Cheechaco answers.

If your country was in danger, and by the sacrifice of your personal possessions you could avert that danger, would you let them go?

Candidate answers.

A. C.:
The Queen signifies her desire to have you enrolled as a member of her bodyguard. The A. T. G. will therefore place upon you the appropriate garb and present you with the royal side arms.
A. C.:
Her Iceness now desires you to be entertained at her royal kitchen. You will be conducted to her Iceness’ cook who will provide with a royal malamute stew.
A. T. G.:
Arctic Chief, I present brother(s) …, that he (they) may receive the final instructions.
A. C.:
Brother(s), I desire to draw your attention to the significance of the title of the order which has just conferred upon you the honor of membership. The Arctic Brotherhood. Pause for a moment to admire its simplicity and to enjoy the thoughts and association that are awakened by it. Since the beginning of Christianity at least, and probably ages before that, the universal brotherhood of man has been the dream of ages and of poets, of all great thinkers who have sought to benefit and uplift the condition and intelligence of their race. From Jesus of Nazareth every few years there has appeared an eloquent apostle of universal brotherhood, like a green oasis in a desert of worldly selfishness. In older communities it has been hard to learn the lesson of these noble apostles. In this new country, however, where all of us start with more equal advantages in the pursuit of prosperity and happiness, greater opportunities are afforded by the conditions of life for the acceptance of this the greatest of all doctrines. I trust that in this order at least, we are, and shall always remain, true and manly brothers in every act, deed and word.

You have reached the end of our northern trail.
The journey was one in which you met and overcome the many hardships and obstacles encountered, and you have proven your strength and endurance and are worthy to be enrolled as an Arctic Brother. As such I greet you. Your entrance to the camp was emblematic of that great class of men who are ever foremost in rushing into new fields, and who are the argonauts of all progressive nations. Your feet were properly shod that you might not slip on the icy trails, and this conveyed the lesson that through life, wherever located, your steps might continue in the path to manly glory. You toiled up the trail, carrying your pack, you demonstrated your ability to "mush on" with a sled and thus did your share of the work. All work is noble. Whatsoever of morality and intelligence, what of patience, perseverance, faithfulness; of method, insight, ingenuity, energy; in a word, whatsoever of STRENGTH a man has in him will be written in the work he does.
Deeds are greater than words. Action is greater than writing. And there are but two things worth living for: To do what is worthy of being written; to write what is worthy of being read. And the greater of these is the doing.
Your experience at the station of the camp cook illustrated, in part, the deceits of the World, and at the same time showed your confidence, or lack of it, in the Arctic Brothers. There can be no genuine brotherhood without mutual regard, confidence and esteem. It is those only who learn to habitually think better of each other, and expect, allow for, and overlook the evil, who can be Brothers, one to the other, in any true sense of the word. We have every reason to believe that you will make (a) worthy members(s).
This order honors the strong muscle, and the manly nerve; the resolute and brave heart; the sweating brow and the toiling brain.
The atmosphere and the earth are man’s laboratory. With pick, shovel and pan; with mining shaft, furnace and forge; with fire and steam; midst the noise and whirl of bright machinery and abroad in the silent fields, man was made to be ever working
If by the use of these emblems you succeed in making some small nook of creation more productive, a little better, or in making human hearts more manful, hopeful or happy you will have done a work worthy of Arctic Brothers.
I will now instruct you in the secret work.
In order to gain admission to a camp of the Arctic Brotherhood while it is in session, you will give any alarm at the outer tollgate. The gate will be opened by the K. of O. T. to whom you will give, in a whisper, the semi-annual password, which is …. This will admit you inside the gate. You will then clothe yourself with a white parka, and apply at the inner tollgate by giving …, the wicket will then be raised and through it you will give your name and the name and number of the camp to which you belong. This will be communicated to the Vice Arctic Chief, who will instruct the K. of I. T. G. to permit you to pass if correct. The wicket will again be raised and through it you will give the permanent pass-word, which is …. This will admit you to the camp, when you approach the altar, in the center of camp and salute the Arctic Chief, or, if he is busy, the Vice Arctic Chief, by …. You will be recognized by a … when you will be seated. Should you desire to retire during the meeting, approach the altar and make the same sign as on entering.
When answered you may retire.
There is a test word which may be used if in doubt as to anyone claiming to be a member. You will say …. If a member he will say …. You both then say ….
The grip of the order is given thus ….
Our emblems are the pick, shovel and gold pan, on which you gave your pledge of honor.
The gold pan, a circle having no end. So should be your fraternal pledge.
The pick and shovel, implements of labor, and as such represent cardinal principles of the Brotherhood.
Our banner, composed of a band of white silk surmounting the American and British flags, with a base of purple. Upon the field of white is the motto: "No boundary lines here." Upon the purple field the name and No. of the camp.
The white is emblematic of the purity of our purpose. The purple our loyalty and zeal.
Arctic Trail Guide, present our brother(s) to the Arctic Recorder that he (they) may sign the constitution after which present him to the Past Arctic Chief.
After this is done the A. T. G. says:
Past Arctic Chief, our brother(s) has signed the roll and received his (their) number(s).
P. A. C.:
Brother(s) your Obligation binds you to relieve and assist a worthy brother in distress, and we are all pledged alike. The trail through life, like the trail to the northland is beset by dangers and vicisstudes of fortune. Falter not; this little badge, a gold pan, the emblem of a miner’s calling, represents a circle which has within it the world, and on that world wherever in the future you may locate, you will find that the lessons inculcated here will be a pleasure and a pride. Our principles are co-extensive with the universe. A. T. G., conduct our brother(s) to the Arctic Chief.
A. T. G.:
Arctic Chief, our brother(s) wears the badge of the brotherhood.
A. C.:
Brother(s), the prospectors pick in the hands of the Arctic Chief, is an emblem of authority. You will please face the camp. One rap gives one rap calls the camp to order. Three raps gives three raps and all the members rise calls the members to their feet, and two raps seats them.
Brothers Arctics, it gives me pleasure to introduce to you brother(s) … who is (are) now enrolled as (a) member(s) of this camp. Join with me in giving him (them) a hearty welcome.
The camp will be at ease.
After a few moments spent in congratulating the brother(s) the camp is called to order and proceeds with the regular Order of Business.
Closing of Camp
The time for closing the Camp having arrived, the Arctic Chief gives one rap, arises and says:
Brothers, I thank you for your attendance here this evening. As we separate to continue the journey on life's trail, let us carry with us the lessons taught in our ritual, and be governed by them in our daily life. You will now rise while the Arctic Chaplain invokes the Great Creator.
The Arctic Chief gives three raps. Members all rise, and the Arctic Chaplain repeats the following:

Great Jehovah, we thank Thee for the innumerable blessings showered upon the Brotherhood. Grant that the principles of the fellowship of God and the brotherhood of man shall at all times prevail. Be with us all on the trail of life, wherever located; unite us firmly together in the bonds of a common purpose, and aid us in all fraternal endeavors. Amen.
Members all repeat:
A. C.:
Brothers, we will now sing the
Closing Ode
Farewell, farewell, thou lonely trail;
Cheechacos' path of strife,
We've joined a glorious Brotherhood
Whose winding ways lead right.
All hail! all hail! our Arctic trail—
No rock, no wave there seen,
As peacefully we ride or sail,
Led by our Arctic Queen.
Good night, good night, to every one;
Be each Arctic tree from care.
May every brother seek his home,
And find contentment there.
A. C.:
Arctic Trail Guide, you will collect the ode and rituals. He does so, placing cards on the Recorder's desk, and handing ritual's to the A. Chief, who says: I now declare … Camp No. … closed until the next regular convention. One rap.