Russian Brotherhood Organization of the U.S.A. records

(processed accessions 1996-035, 2004-090, 2005-010, 2005-011) The Russian Brotherhood Organization of the U.S.A. (RBO), a non-profit fraternal benefit society, was established on July 1, 1900, at Mahanoy City, Pennsylvania. Their mission was to provide mutual protection from hardships for the early...

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Bibliographic Details
Corporate Author: Russian Brotherhood Organization of the U.S.A (Creator)
Collection:Russian Brotherhood Organization of the U.S.A. Records
Collection Number:3035
Format: Manuscript
Language:Russian
Online Access:Link to finding aid
Physical Description: 440.6 Linear feet 788 boxes, 163 volumes, 4 flat files
Summary: (processed accessions 1996-035, 2004-090, 2005-010, 2005-011) The Russian Brotherhood Organization of the U.S.A. (RBO), a non-profit fraternal benefit society, was established on July 1, 1900, at Mahanoy City, Pennsylvania. Their mission was to provide mutual protection from hardships for the early immigrants from Galicia and Carpathian Russia who settled in the anthracite region of Pennsylvania, and to continue to serve second and third generations of immigrants. The stated purpose of the society is to provide relief for members distressed by illness, physical injury, or disability, and also to care for the widows and orphans of deceased members. The RBO provides insurance benefits, supports orphanages, and establishes and maintains a scholarship fund. In 1965, another Russian beneficial organization, the Russian Consolidated Mutual Aid Society of America (RCMASA) merged insurance operations with the RBO, taking the RBO’s name, constitution, and bylaws. The RCMASA had been established in 1926 by immigrants from Russia to provide insurance, financial assistance for the disabled, low-cost mortgages, shelters for the homeless and aged, and to contribute to the preservation of Russian religious and cultural traditions. In 1934, the RCMASA established ROVA Farms, Inc., in Cassville, Ocean County, New Jersey. ROVA Farms, Inc. was not included in the merger with RBO, and continues to exist as a Russian-American cultural and social center. Beyond centering primarily on the materials of the RBO, this collection also chronicles the history as well as the depth and breadth of the fraternal, benevolent, and cultural activities of the RCMASA with ROVA Farms, Inc. A long run of RBO’s death and other benefit claim records constitute the largest portion of the collection, and are also indexed in a Microsoft Access database. The RBO records are particularly rich in correspondence and financial records. Additionally, the RBO materials include constitutions and bylaws, convention materials, annual statements, insurance rate instructions and a manual, members’ military service records, unemployment loan records, and official publications. Materials that belong to the RCMASA include its charter, numerous minute books, a considerable amount of branch correspondence, and official publications, as well as the constitution and bylaws of the ROVA Farms, Inc. The collection also contains materials regarding the merger process of RBO and RCMASA. Materials are in English, Russian, and Carpatho-Rusyn languages. (unprocessed accessions 2005.047 to 2009.072 - 18 total) These materials consist of RBO, LUBOV, and ROVA records, 1900-2008, including but not limited to death claims; surrendered, matured, and expired policies; administrative files; applications of suspended lodges; policies of the Juvenile Department; annual statements; Russional Consolidated Mutal Aid policies; newletters, pamphlets, and brochures; minutes and minute books; and other miscellaneous papers. New additions to the collection (unaccessioned as of 6/24/10) date from 1937-2010, measure 2 linear feet in 3 boxes, and include mixed minutes, financial papers, bond records, 2002 convention files and photographs, reports from the Russian Consolidated Mutual Aid Society, correspondence, scholarship files, and other office files.