Royal Antediluvian Order of Buffaloes

In times past, the society oddly known as the Royal Antediluvian Order of Buffaloes was active in Market Lavington. The name is odd, because the society has, and never has had royal patronage. Neither is it antediluvian in the sense of Noah’s flood. The first branch was formed in 1822. It is also hard to know what it had to do with buffaloes. It is one of those vaguely closed societies who look after the interests of members – but also do all sorts of charitable work.

Today we look at a medal – one of a number we have in Market Lavington Museum.

Medal belonging to a Royal Antediluvian Order of Buffaloes member. It can be seen at Market Lavington Museum

On this medal and ribbon we see a monogram – RAOB and also the letters GLE – Grand Lodge of England. There are clearly some buffalo horns.

For us, it is the back of the medal which provides more interest, for this names the recipient.

The medal belonged to T Gye of Cemetery Lane, Market Lavington

We can se this medal was awarded to Brother T Gye by the Enterprise Lodge number 3599, for attendance.

We think this medal dates from about 1930.

So who was T Gye? Clearly, he was not ‘our’ Tom Gye, widower of our founder curator Peggy, for he’d have been only a lad at the time. We know that the medal was given to us by a daughter in law of ‘T Gye’ and her name and relationship proved enough to identify the medal owner. T Gye was actually William Thomas Gye. He was a market gardener who lived at Homestead Farm, Cemetery Lane – now called Drove Lane. You can click here to learn more about the farm and the family.


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One Response to “Royal Antediluvian Order of Buffaloes”

  1. Jjohn Burgess Says:

    This R.A.O.B lodge (meeting place) was in the Kings Arms Pub. My father and grand father were members. And i am a member of the R.A.O.B lodge in Urchfont if it is still meeting

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