Brief Pan-Icarian History
According to Icarian-American lore, a group of immigrants from Icaria formed a mutual aid in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on January 26, 1903, which was later chartered in 1905 as the Icarian Brotherhood of America. The purpose of this organization was to provide medical, disability and funeral benefits for its members and provided a vehicle for raising money for charitable contributions for the islands of Icaria and Fourni.
By the early 1930s six additional clubs in New York and Ohio were organized into a separate organization called the Knights and Ladies of Icaria. In 1934 the Icarian Brotherhood with the six new chapters became the Pan-Icarian Brotherhood of America.
Additional Icarian and Fournian clubs were later formed all over North America. There are currently paying members in 30 Chapters. We are proud to say that this Brotherhood is the oldest Hellenic organization in the Western Hemisphere and one of the largest.
The membership of the Pan-Icarian Brotherhood is open to anyone over 18 years of age (or their spouse) whose ancestry can be traced to the eastern Aegean Greek islands of Icaria or Fournoi. There are approximately 2,000 dues paying members among the 30 Chapters in the United States and Canada. The annual convention of the Pan-Icarian Brotherhood is held every Labor Day weekend and can attract several thousand participants.
In 1965 a tax exempt “Pan-Icarian Foundation” was established to administer the philanthropic endeavors of the Pan-Icarian Brotherhood. Since its inception the Foundation has distributed hundreds of thousands of dollars for medical aid, scholarships, disaster relief, and other charitable causes in North America and Greece.
The official publication of the Pan-Icarian Brotherhood and the Pan-Icarian Foundation is IKARIA magazine. IKARIA magazine is published quarterly.
Icarians throughout the world celebrate July 17 or Saint Marina Day as Icarian Independence Day. On this date in 1912 the Icarians freed themselves of Turkish rule in a brief revolution with only one fatality. The island was technically an independent nation (with its own flag and national anthem) until union with Greece in November of that year. July 17 is commemorated by the Icarian diaspora of North America with picnics and parties.