The Album of Unwritten Work

Nat Trotman at Cabinet Magazine:

In 1843, the Independent Order of Odd Fellowship was established in Baltimore following a wave of reforms within the Grand Lodge of Odd Fellows of the United States. In the years since the Odd Fellows first arrived from England in 1819, the fraternal organization had gained a reputation for boisterous carousing while garnering membership as a working-class alternative to Freemasonry. The Antimasonic movement of the 1830s introduced a massive wave of upper-middle-class initiates to the Odd Fellows, who brought with them a new emphasis on moral uprightness. Initiation fees increased, a newly formed judicial system expelled disreputable members, and alcohol was banned from all lodges, which began to save and invest their funds, no longer assisting members in times of need. In this new spirit of exclusivity and high principles, the I.O.O.F. instituted a body of rituals to accompany a streamlined and regulated order of degrees. The keys to these rituals were a set of books owned by each Grand Lodge, the “Albums of Written and Unwritten Work.”

more here.