Declaration of Purposes — National Grange
Profoundly impressed with the truth that the National Grange of the Order of Patrons of Husbandry should proclaim to the world its general objectives, we hereby unanimously make this Declaration of Purposes.
United by the strong and faithful tie of an agricultural fraternity, yet welcoming all of good moral character to membership, we mutually resolve to labor for the good of our Order, our country, and mankind. We heartily endorse the motto, “In essentials, unity; in non-essentials, liberty; in all things, charity.”
We shall endeavor to advance our cause by striving to accomplish the following objectives:
• To develop a better and higher manhood and womanhood among ourselves; to enhance the comforts and attractions of our homes; to strengthen our attachments to our pursuits; to foster mutual understanding and cooperation; to maintain inviolate our laws, and to emulate each other in labor, in order to hasten the good time coming.
• We propose meeting together, talking together, working together, and in general, acting together for our mutual protection and advancement. We shall constantly strive to secure harmony, good will, and brotherhood, and to make our Order perpetual. We shall earnestly endeavor to suppress personal, local, sectional, and national prejudices, all unhealthy rivalry and all selfish ambition. Faithful adherence to these principles will insure our mental, moral, social and material advancement.
For our business interests we desire to bring producer and consumer into the most direct and friendly relations possible, remembering that “individual happiness depends upon general prosperity.” We are opposed to such spirit and management of any corporation or enterprise which tends to oppress people. We long to see the antagonism between capital and labor removed by common consent, and by statesmanship worthy of an enlightened people. We are opposed to wages and salaries that exceed productive efficiency. We recommend that farmers buy wisely and produce efficiently to make their farms profitable; to make maximum use of the innovations of science and technology; to systematize their work and to calculate intelligently on probabilities. To all we recommend sound money management that we may avoid insolvency and bankruptcy.
We shall advance the cause of education by all just means within our power. Influenced by our strong beliefs in the institution of the family, we are convinced that education begins in the family circle. Discipline is an essential part of education. Self-discipline comes with maturity. Until such time as this level of competency is reached, families and schools have a responsibility for enforcing adequate discipline. We recognize the necessity of experimentation to develop new and better methods of education, but we caution against the widespread adoption of these innovative and experimental methods until they have been proven effective. We recognize that education is a continuing process. We encourage all to continue their education through adult education classes, by continued reading, observation and such other methods as may be available, including radio, television and the internet. We recognize the valuable contribution made to education by the printed word, especially in newspapers, periodicals and books, and will continue to advocate their widespread availability.
Our Fraternity, being agriculturally based, family oriented and dedicated to the pure principles of equality under Constitutional Law, we appeal to all good citizens for mutual cooperation and assistance toward reform that we may remove from our midst the last vestige of inequity and corruption. We believe that harmony, equitable compromise and earnest cooperation are essential to future success.
The Grange—Not Partisan
We emphatically and sincerely assert the oft-repeated truth taught in our Constitutional Law, that the Grange—National, State, Pomona, or Subordinate—is not a partisan or party organization. The principles we teach underlie all true statesmanship, and if properly carried out, will tend to purify the whole political atmosphere of our country; for we seek the greatest good to the greatest number. We must always bear in mind that no one, by becoming a Patron of Husbandry, gives up that inalienable right and duty which belongs to every American citizen, to take a proper interest in the politics of one’s country. On the contrary, it is right for every member to do all in his or her power, legitimately, to influence for good the action of any political party to which he or she belongs. It is reserved by every Patron, as the right of a free citizen to affiliate with any party that will best carry out his or her principles. We acknowledge the broad principle that difference of opinion is no crime, and hold that “progress toward truth is made by differences of opinion,” while “the fault lies in bitterness of controversy.” We desire a proper equality, and fairness; protection for the weak; restraint upon the strong; in short, justly distributed power. These are American ideals, the very essence of American independence, and to advocate the contrary is unworthy of the sons and daughters of our Republic. We cherish the belief that sectionalism is, and of right should be, dead and buried with the past. Our work is for the present and the future. In our agricultural fraternity we shall recognize no North, no South, no East, no West.
It shall be an abiding principle with us to relieve any of our oppressed and suffering members by any reasonable means at our command. We proclaim it among our purposes to continue our historical appreciation of the abilities and equality of women. Imploring the continued assistance of our Divine Master to guide us in our work, we pledge ourselves to faithful and harmonious labor for all future time; to advance by our united efforts, to the wisdom, justice, fraternity and political purity so earnestly sought by the wise and courageous men and women who founded our noble Order.