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Our History

First (White) Sash

First Appearance of White Sashes with Red Arrows

There are no known examples or photographs of the original black sash with white bar or arrow on it.

The earliest photograph known showing a Wimachtendienk sash being worn is 1919. This photo was taken at Treasure Island at the Council Fire Ring during a Friday evening public First Degree induction ceremony. The photograph is black and white and shows a white background sash with a dark arrow on it. Because the colors red and black have the same value in black and white photography there is no way to know if the arrows on the sashes in this early photo are black or red.

There is one known example of a white sash with a black arrow that originated from Chicago and dates to the early 1920s. This was a locally made sash, likely an early example of Chicago doing its own thing. However there is no evidence that suggests that early Wimachtendienk at Treasure Island ever used a sash other than white with red arrow except for the first black sashes from 1915.

In the 1919 picture the sashes are worn over the right shoulder – First Degree (Pledge) and over the left shoulder – First Degree (full member).

The first mention of the Order’s sash is in the First Degree ceremony ca. (1917-1918). The First Degree ceremony at that time was where Pledges sealed their membership in the Order in a member’s only ceremony held back in the city (Philadelphia) following their public induction at Treasure Island.

The mention is by the Chief; Sakima who states just before the closing ceremony:

… Now, with the assistance of Pow-wow, I shall pin on your breasts the badge of the turtle, with the arrow pointing over your left shoulder, change your arrow bands to the left side, and giving you again the grip of the Order, declare you members of the second degree, and entitled to all the rights, privileges and immunities of the Order.