BYLAWS

ARTICLE I: NAME

The name of this Society shall be the OKLAHOMA SOCIETY OF MAYFLOWER DESCENDANTS (State Society). The State Society shall be affiliated with the GENERAL SOCIETY OF MAYFLOWER DESCENDANTS (General Society).

ARTICLE II: OBJECT

Section 1. To perpetuate to a remote posterity the memory of our Pilgrim Fathers. To maintain and defend the principle of civil and religious liberty as set forth in the Compact of the Mayflower, "For the glorie of God, and advancemente of the Christian faith and honor of our countrie."

Section 2. To cherish and maintain the ideals and institutions of American freedom, and to oppose any theories or actions that threaten their continuity. To 

transmit the spirit, the purity of purpose and steadfastness of will of the Pilgrim Fathers to those who shall come after us, an undiminished heritage of liberty and law.

Section 3. To promote the interests that are common to all the State Societies of Mayflower Descendants which can best be served by a federal body, and to secure united effort to discover and publish original matter in regard to the Pilgrims, together with existing data known only to antiquarians, and to authenticate, preserve and mark historical spots made memorable by Pilgrim association.

Section 4. To work with all organizations and people who espouse these ideals. America was settled over a span of several centuries by diverse nationalities each of which brought with them unique contributions and their own love and respect for civil and religious liberty. The experiences of the Pilgrims, and all those who followed, must be understood and cherished. We, therefore, seek that understanding and pledge our cooperation with all of like mind who would preserve our heritage.

 

ARTICLE III: MEMBERS

Section 1. All persons who are descended from a passenger on the Mayflower, on the voyage which terminated at Plymouth, New England, in December 1620, shall be eligible for membership. Membership shall be by invitation.

Section 2. There shall be four classes of membership.

(a)  Regular Member: A person over eighteen years of age who elects to pay annual dues shall be a Regular Member. A Regular Member shall have all the privileges of membership and shall be counted for delegate representation.

 

(b)  Life Member: A person over eighteen years of age who elects to pay the Life Membership fee shall be a Life Member. A Life Member shall have no further dues requirement, shall have all the privileges of membership, and shall be counted for delegate representation.

 

(c)  Oklahoma Junior Member: A person under eighteen years of age who is related by blood to a Regular Member or a Life Member and whose Oklahoma Junior Membership fee is paid shall be an Oklahoma Junior Member. An Oklahoma Junior Member is not recognized by the General Society but is a member of the State Society. Such member shall not vote, hold office, nor be counted for delegate representation. An Oklahoma Junior Member who has reached eighteen years of age may apply for membership in the General Society following the usual application procedure except that the State Society entrance fee shall be waived. This privilege shall be valid until the member's twenty-fifth birthday.

 

(d)  Junior Life Member: A person under eighteen years of age who is related by blood to a Regular Member or a Life Member and whose Junior Life Membership fee is paid shall be a Junior Life Member of the General Society. A Junior Life Member shall be a member with no further dues requirement but shall not vote nor hold office in the State Society. A Junior Life Member shall be counted for delegate representation. At eighteen years of age, a Junior Life Member shall automatically be transferred to Life Member.

Section 3. Application for Membership

(a)  An application for Regular Membership, for Life Membership, and for Junior Life Membership shall be made on a preliminary application blank provided by the Historian upon the request of the proposing member. Such application shall be completed and returned to the Historian. The Historian shall present the applicant's name at the next regular meeting of the membership. A majority vote shall approve the applicant as a candidate for membership.

 

(b)  After the applicant has been approved as a candidate for membership, a worksheet shall be issued by the Historian. When the applicant has completed the worksheet and collected the documentation, the worksheet, documentation, application fee and the current year's dues shall be returned to the Historian. Following approval of the worksheet and documentation by the Historian, the Historian shall issue duplicate lineage papers. Duplicate typed lineage papers shall be filled out by the candidate and returned to the Historian within one year. An extension of time may be granted.

 

(c)  A candidate for membership in the State Society may request through the Historian a copy of a lineage paper or copies of documentary proofs from the office of the Historian General. The charges for such copies shall be determined by the Historian General and such charges shall be paid in advance by the applicant to the Historian.

 

(d)  A candidate for membership shall become a member after the line of descent has been approved by the Historian General; provided, however, that if an irreconcilable difference of opinion shall exist between the State Society and the Historian General as to the eligibility of an applicant for membership, the State Society may appeal to the General Board of Assistants. The decision of the General Board of Assistants shall be final.

 

(e)  An application for Oklahoma Junior Membership shall be made on an application blank provided by the Oklahoma Junior Membership Committee Chairman. Such application blank shall be filled out and shall be returned to the Oklahoma Junior Membership Committee Chairman accompanied by the entrance fee. The proposing member shall sign for an Oklahoma Junior Member who is unable to write.

Section 4. Membership Standing

(a)  A member who has paid the current year's dues prior to January 1 shall be in good standing.

(b)  A member who has not paid the current year's dues by February 20 shall automatically be dropped from membership.

Section 5. Severance of Membership

(a)  To resign, a member shall make a written request to the Governor who shall grant the resignation provided that the Treasurer certifies that the member has met all financial obligations.

(b)  A member who has not paid the current year's dues by March 5 shall automatically be dropped from membership.

Section 6. Membership Reinstatement

(a)  A former member who has resigned in good standing and who desires to be reinstated, shall make a written request to the Governor who shall grant the reinstatement provided that the Treasurer certifies that the member resigned in good standing. The member shall pay the current annual dues.

(b)  A former member who was dropped for nonpayment of dues and who desires to be reinstated, shall make a written request to the Governor who shall grant the reinstatement provided that the dues for the year in which membership was terminated plus the dues and assessments for the current year are paid.

Section 7. Transfer of Membership

(a)  A member who desires to transfer to another state society shall make written application to the Secretary. The Secretary shall provide the member a certificate of good standing and a copy or his/her lineage papers, provided the Treasurer certifies that the member is in good standing. Such transfer shall be complete when the Secretary is notified by the Historian General that the member has been enrolled as a member of another state society. 

 

(b)  An application for transfer into the State Society shall be made on a preliminary application blank provided by the Historian upon the request of the proposing member. Such application shall be completed and returned to the Historian. The Historian shall present the member's name at the next regular meeting of the membership. A majority vote by ballot shall approve the transfer. Following approval of the transfer, the member shall provide a certificate of good standing and a photocopy of his/her original lineage papers. The transferring member shall be enrolled after the application documents have been accepted by the Historian. The Secretary shall notify the Historian General of the transfer date and State Society number.

Section 8. The name and record of ancestry of every member who dies in good standing shall be recorded and retained forever "In Memoriam." The name of the deceased member shall be published "In Memoriam" in every membership book of the State Society for 5 years.

ARTICLE IV: FEES AND DUES

Section 1. Entrance Fee

(a)  The entrance fee for those seeking admission as a Regular Member, a Life Member, and a Junior Life Member shall be $100 which includes a $25 State Society entrance fee plus a $75 General Society entrance fee.

(b)  The entrance fee for those seeking admission as an Oklahoma Junior Member shall be $6.

(c)  The entrance fee for an Oklahoma Junior Member seeking admission as a Junior Life Member, a Regular Member or a Life Member shall be a $75 General Society fee.

(d)  Should the application fail to be approved, the entrance fee shall be non-refundable.

(e)  There shall be no transfer fee. There may be a charge at clerical cost for providing lineage papers and documentation.

(f)  The fee for supplemental lineage papers shall be $100 payable in advance to the Historian.

Section 2. Dues

(a)  The dues for a Regular Member shall be $26 a year which includes $11 State Society dues plus $15 General Society dues.

 

(b)  The dues for a Life Member or a Junior Life Member shall be a onetime charge of $400.

 

(c)  No annual dues shall be required of an Oklahoma Junior Member.

Section 3. Dues notices shall be sent out prior to November 1 and dues shall be payable prior to January 1 of the following year.

 

Section 4. In determining the total membership of the State Society, all persons who have paid dues for the current year plus all Life Members and Junior Life Members shall be counted as members.

 

Section 5. Fiscal year shall begin annually on January 1.

ARTICLE V: OFFICERS

Section 1. The elected officers of the State Society shall be a Governor, a Deputy Governor, a Secretary, a Treasurer, a Historian, an Elder, a Captain, a Surgeon, a Counselor, and five Assistants.

 

Section 2. Qualification

(a)  To qualify for any elective office, an individual shall have been a member of the State Society for two years.

 

(b)  To be eligible for nomination to the office of Governor or Deputy Governor, a member shall have served on the Board of Assistants for two years.

Section 3. Term of Office

(a)  Officers shall serve for a term of two years or until their successors are elected. The term of office shall begin at the conclusion of the annual meeting at which the election was held.

(b)  No officer shall be eligible to serve consecutive terms in the same office except the Secretary, Treasurer and the Historian.

 

(c)  A member shall hold only one elective office at a time.

 

(d)  An officer who has served more than one half a term shall be considered to have served a full term.

Section 4. Duties

 

(a)  The Governor shall be the Chief Executive Officer of the State Society in all matters concerning its administration and operation; shall be the official representative of the State Society; shall preside at all membership and Board of Assistants meetings; shall be the custodian of the State Society Charter; shall have his/her signature on file with bank for all accounts of the Society's funds; and shall appoint a Parliamentarian and all standing and special committees.

 

(b)  The Deputy Governor shall assist the Governor in the performance of those duties and succeed to the office of Governor for the unexpired term in the event of a vacancy in that office; and shall be the third signer on the State Society's checking account with all responsibilities thereof.

 

(c)  The Secretary shall record the proceedings of all membership and Board of Assistants meetings; shall notify the members of all meetings; shall transmit whatever notices and communications may be required by the order of the membership, the Board of Assistants, or the Governor; and shall be the custodian of all the State Society books, papers, and properties except those specifically assigned to other officers.

 

(d)  The Treasurer shall collect and take charge of all funds belonging to the State Society; shall deposit said funds in an appropriate federally insured financial institution in the name of the State Society; shall keep suitable books of account; shall keep an account of all moneys received and disbursed; shall send out dues notices prior to November 1 of each year; shall send out dues notices to members in arrears between January 5 and February 20, informing them that if dues are not received by March 5, their membership will be terminated; shall prepare and send membership cards upon receipt of member's dues; shall disburse money only upon written request of the person/committee responsible for an expenditure which is approved by the Governor; shall prepare an interim report for each membership and Board of Assistants meeting; and shall close the Treasurer's books no less than 20 days in advance of the annual meeting in even numbered years in preparation for the biennial audit; shall prepare a budget each year based on receipts of the preceding year and shall provide for the expenses of the OSMD. This budget shall be first presented to the BOA at the Anniversary Meeting in the spring, who may then recommend its presentation to the membership at the Compact Day Meeting for their approval.

 

(e)  The Historian shall examine the lineage papers for correctness; shall have custody of the State Society's copy of the approved lineage papers; shall have charge of the issuing of worksheets and lineage papers and presenting certificates of membership; and shall report at every meeting.

 

(f)  The Elder shall, when called upon, officiate at any meeting of the membership and shall conduct a memorial service at the annual meeting for members who have died during the year. The Elder shall, when possible, be an ordained deacon, elder, minister, or bishop of a Christian Church.

 

(g)  The Captain shall be the custodian of all meeting equipment.

 

(h)  The Surgeon shall have been duly admitted to the practice of medicine. He/she shall be under the orders of the Governor and Board of Assistants.

 

(i)  The Counselor shall be an Attorney at Law. He/she shall render legal aid and opinions upon matters pertaining to the State Society when requested to do so by the Governor or by the Board of Assistants.

 

(j)  The Parliamentarian shall perform the duties as specified in the current edition of Robert's Rules of Order Newly Revised except that should the Parliamentarian be a member of the State Society, he/she shall retain all rights and privileges of that membership. The Parliamentarian shall attend all membership and Board of Assistants meetings.

 

(k)  All files of office shall be forwarded to the newly elected officers no more than 45 days after their election.

Section 5. Nomination and Election

(a)  The election of officers shall be held at the annual meeting in the even numbered years.

 

(b)  The election of assistants shall be held at the annual meeting in the odd numbered years.

 

(c)  The Nominating Committee shall submit to the membership one nominee for each elective office and five nominees for assistant. The Nominating Committee's report shall be included in the call to meeting at which the election shall be held. There may be nominations from the floor, provided that the member nominated has consented to serve if elected.

 

(d)  The election shall be by ballot and a majority vote shall elect. A voice vote may be taken, provided that there be only one candidate for an office.

Section 6. Vacancy in Office

(a) A vacancy in the office of Governor shall be filled by the Deputy Governor for the unexpired term of the Governor.

(b) A vacancy in any other elected office shall be filled by the Board of Assistants and that member recommended for confirmation at the next membership meeting.

Section 7. An officer may be removed from office at any time by a two-thirds vote by ballot of the members at a regular meeting or a special meeting provided that a 30 day prior notice of such intent is given in the call to the meeting.

ARTICLE VI: MEETINGS

 

Section 1. Regular Meeting

(a) There shall be two regular meetings each year; the Anniversary Meeting in the spring held as near as possible to the 2nd day of April, the anniversary of the election of the first Governor of Plymouth Colony; and the Compact Day Meeting in the fall held as near as possible to the 21st day of November, the anniversary of the signing of the Compact in the cabin of the Mayflower.

(b) The date, location and time of each meeting shall be selected by the Governor.

(c) The Secretary shall mail the call to the meeting no less than 20 days in advance of the meeting.

Section 2. Annual Meeting

(a) The Compact Day Meeting shall be the annual meeting, effective 1994.

(b) The purpose of the annual meeting shall be to hear reports of officers and standing committees; to adopt the budget for the coming year; to elect officers or assistants; and to consider any other business that may arise.

(c) At the annual meeting before the Triennial Congress of the General Society, delegates shall be elected as follows:

(1) A Deputy Governor General and an Assistant General, who shall be approved by the General Society, shall be nominated by the State Society. Such Deputy Governor General and Assistant General when elected by the General Society shall serve for a term of 3 years and shall represent the State Society at all meetings of the General Society. In the event neither of these officers can attend the Triennial Congress, the Governor or his/her appointee may attend.

(2) Member delegates to the Triennial Congress shall be elected as prescribed by the General Society. To qualify as a delegate, an individual shall have been a member of the State Society for four years and shall be nominated by the State Society.

Section 3. A special meeting may be called by the Governor and shall be called upon the written request of five members. Only the business listed in the call to the meeting shall be considered at the special meeting.

Section 4. Voting

(a) A member shall be entitled to only one vote.

(b) There shall be no voting by proxy.

Section 5. Eleven members shall constitute a quorum.

Section 6. Guests may attend meetings as silent visitors.

ARTICLE VII: BOARD OF ASSISTANTS

 

Section 1. The Board of Assistants shall be composed of the elected officers, the Deputy Governor General, the Assistant General and the five Assistants. The past Governors shall be ex officio members of the Board of Assistants.

Section 2. The Board of Assistants shall have all power and authority to conduct the business of the State Society between meetings of the membership, except that of modifying any action taken by the membership, incurring any debt or liability other than the current expenses; or the expenditure of money for which the membership shall be held responsible.

Section 3. Meetings

 

(a) The Board of Assistants shall meet no less than twice a year at a location, date, and time selected by the Governor.

 

(b) Special meetings of the Board of Assistants may be called by the Governor and shall be called upon the written request of three members of the Board of Assistants. Only the business listed in the call to the meeting shall be considered at a special meeting.

 

(c) The Secretary shall mail the call to a meeting of the Board of Assistants no less than 10 days in advance of the meeting.

 

(d) Matters requiring immediate action by the Board of Assistants may be voted on by mail or by electronic mail or by fax or by phone provided that the Governor deems it necessary. Each member of the Board of Assistants shall be notified and a two-thirds affirmative vote shall be required for any action. Such action shall be confirmed and shall be made a part of the minutes at the next Board of Assistants meeting.

 

(e) Five members shall constitute a quorum.

 

Section 4. The Board of Assistants may, at any time, authorize the formation of a Colony whenever ten members make a written request. The name of such Colony shall be "The ______ Colony of the Oklahoma Society of Mayflower Descendants." The bylaws of such colony shall not conflict with the State Society Bylaws and shall be approved by the State Society Board of Assistants before the colony charter is granted. Any and all changes in the colony bylaws shall be approved before the changes take effect. The colony shall not involve the State Society in any pecuniary or other obligation.

ARTICLE VIII: COMMITTEES

 

Section 1. The standing committees shall be the Oklahoma Junior Membership Committee, the Auditing Committee, the Bylaws Committee, and the Nominating Committee.

Section 2. Other standing committees and special committees may be appointed by the Governor or, when authorized, by the Board of Assistants.

Section 3. General Procedure

(a) All committees shall be appointed by the Governor for a term of two years.

(b) The Governor shall be ex officio a member of all committees, except the nominating committee.

(c) Matters requiring immediate committee action may be voted upon by electronic mail, fax, mail or by phone when the committee chairman deems it necessary. Each member of the committee shall be notified.

Section 4. Duties of Committees

(a) The Oklahoma Junior Membership Committee, consisting of three members, shall seek out and encourage members to enroll their children, grandchildren, nieces, and nephews as Oklahoma Junior Members; shall report at all membership and Board of Assistants meetings; shall maintain a current roster of Oklahoma Junior Members; and shall encourage Oklahoma Junior Members at their eighteenth birthdays to apply for membership in the General Society.

(b) The Auditing Committee, consisting of two members, shall audit the Treasurer's books in every even numbered year and shall report at the annual meeting.

(c) The Bylaws Committee, consisting of the Parliamentarian and two additional members, shall consider, edit, correct, and/or correlate proposed amendments to these Bylaws and shall submit the committee's recommendations to the membership.

(d) The Nominating Committee shall consist of three willing past Governors who have served most recently. When enough past Governors cannot serve, the Board of Assistants shall elect first from the Board of Assistants and then from the membership the number needed to make up the committee. The committee shall elect a chairman. The committee shall recommend one nominee for each office. The list of nominees shall be sent to the Secretary no less than 60 days in advance of the meeting at which the election shall be held.

(e) Other standing and special committees shall perform the duties as may be assigned to them.

Section 5. A vacancy in any committee shall be filled by the Governor, except the Nominating Committee.

ARTICLE IX: PARLIAMENTARY AUTHORITY

The rules contained in the current edition of Robert's Rules of Order Newly Revised, shall govern the State Society in all cases in which they are applicable and in which they are not inconsistent with these Bylaws, the Constitution and Bylaws of the General Society or any special rules of order which may be adopted. The latest edition of Robert's Rules of Order Newly Revised shall become the current parliamentary authority 12 months after first publication with the immediately preceding edition governing until that time.

ARTICLE X: AMENDMENTS - REVISION

 

Section 1. Amendments

(a) These bylaws may be amended at any regular meeting of the membership.

(b) A bylaws amendment may be proposed by the Board of Assistants, a standing or a special committee, or over the signature of five members.

(c) A proposed bylaws amendment shall be sent to the chairman of the Bylaws Committee no less than 120 days in advance of a meeting of the membership. Such bylaws amendment shall be approved by the Board of Assistants prior to its being presented to the membership. A copy of the proposed bylaws amendment shall be included in the call to the meeting.

(d) Two-thirds vote shall be required for the adoption of a bylaws amendment.

Section 2. Revision

(a) These bylaws may be revised by a special Bylaws Revision Committee elected by the membership at an annual meeting. The committee shall report at the next annual meeting.

(b) Such bylaws revision shall be approved by the Board of Assistants prior to its being presented to the membership. Notice of the bylaws revision shall be included in the call to the meeting.

(c) A two-thirds vote shall be required for the adoption of a bylaws revision.

ARTICLE XI: DISSOLUTION

 

In the event of dissolution of the State Society, any assets remaining shall be sent to the General Society in accordance with Section 501 (c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. The State Society charter and all files shall be returned to the General Society.

Adopted:

07 Nov 1992


Amended:
11 Nov 1995
04 Dec 1999

02 Dec 2000
24 Apr 2004
19
Nov 2005
04
Nov 2006
12 Apr 2008
08
Nov 2008
09
Nov 2013

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Oklahoma Society of Mayflower Descendants