UOTS was founded by Henrietta
Bruckman, wife of a prominent New York physician. The concept of a "True
Sister" organization was truly revolutionary in an age when a woman's
life was completely dominated by home, family and synagogue. With the
assistance of the Associate Rabbi of Emanuel Congregation, Dr. Mitchels,
one of the founders of B'nai B'rith, Henrietta Bruckman and her husband
gathered together a small group of woman from Emanuel Congregation and
formed the "Independent Order True Sisters".
Originally established as a secret
society to spare the recipient of charity any humiliation, True Sisters
adopted rituals, degrees, a constitution, by-laws and the official seal.
The proper regalia for retiring presidents was drawn up and accepted. It
is still in use today.
The first chapter, Immanuel, named
because of the religious significance (God be with us) and because it
was the name of the Congregation, renamed under the guidance of the men
who aided it until May 4, 1851, when the Grand Lodge was formed with
Henrietta Bruckman as President. In 1851, a second chapter was formed in
Philadelphia and in 1874 the first Mid-Western Chapter, Johanna #9 in
Chicago, joined the Order. Today there are Chapters around the country.
After the first English speaking
chapter, Columbia #13 was founded in 1892, all subsequent Chapters used
English to conduct their meetings. By 1918, English became the official
language of the Order and the official title became "United Order of
True Sisters, Inc."
The main line of communication, "The
Echo", was established in 1889 and a National Clubhouse was dedicated in
1927. In keeping with tradition, the many Chapters of UOTS continue to
focus their attention toward a variety of philanthropic endeavors.
In 1947, United Order True Sisters,
Inc. Cancer Service was established. Our greatest unifying force today
is the unfaltering devotion of our members across the nation to the
fight against Cancer. Donations to hospitals for equipment, monies for
Cancer research, but above all, the help for the individual Cancer
victim through Personal Service, are the philanthropic aims of our
To the silken ties
that bind us, To the tasks that fate assigns us, To the path that lies
behind us, To each cause that needs assistance, To the future in the