Copeland Lumber Black Cat Logo
The most distinguishing mark of Copeland Lumber Yards, Inc., was the use of bright, Halloween orange on the buildings and a big black cat insignia. This all came about when the company, in its early expansion days, purchased the Fenton Lumber Company of Fenton, Idaho. The orange color and black cat were trademarks of the Fenton firm.
But where did the Fenton Lumber Company get the logo?
From the Concatenated Order of Hoo-Hoo.
The International Concatenated Order of Hoo-Hoo, Incorporated is a fraternal and service organization whose members are involved in the forests products industry. Hoo-Hoo has members in the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Malaysia and South Africa.
The organization was founded on January 21, 1892 at Gurdon, Arkansas by six men: B. Arthur Johnson, editor of the Timberman of Chicago; William Eddy Barns, editor of the St. Louis Lumberman; George Washington Schwartz of Vandalia Road, St. Louis; A. Strauss of Malvern Lumber Company, Malvern, Arkansas; George Kimball Smith of the Southern Lumber Manufacturers Association, and William Starr Mitchell, business manager of the Arkansas Democrat of Little Rock, Arkansas. As most of these men were only connected to the lumber industry in a tangential way – company executives, newspaper men, railroad men etc – it was first suggested that the name of the new organization be “Independent Order of Camp Followers”. However the group instead settled on the name Concatenated Order of Hoo-Hoo – the word “hoo hoo” having become synonymous with the term lumberman. The first regular Concatenation was held at the St. Charles Hotel in New Orleans on February 18, 1892 when 35 of the leading lumbermen of the country were initiated.
Membership was restricted to white males over 21 who were engaged in the lumber industry as lumbermen, newspapermen, railroad men and saw mill machinery men. A Mrs. M. A. Smith of Smithton, Arkansas was initiated before the gender requirement was passed, so she stayed on as the Order’s only female member. The Order was limited to having a maximum of 9,000 members. It the late 1890s it had upwards of 5,000 members. By the early 1920s this had grown to approximately 7,000.
Membership is currently limited to people 18 and up who are of good moral character who are engaged in the forestry industry or “genuinely interested in supporting the purpose and aims of our order.”
The order was more informal than other secret societies of its day. It did not have lodge rooms, enforced attendance at meetings or anything else that other orders had that could be avoided. The executive committee of the Order was known as the Supreme Nine and consisted of the Snark, the Senior Hoo-Hoo, Junior Hoo-Hoo, Scrivenoter, Bojum, Jabberwock, Custocatian, Arcanoper and Gurdon. Judicial affairs and care of the emblem were delegated to a House of the Ancients which consisted of the past executives of the Order and whose members served for life. A each Hoo Hoo annual the order would perform an embalming of the Snark, passing him into the House. By the late 1890s the House included B. Arthur Johnson, William Eddy Barns and James E. Defebaugh. Each state or foreign country was ruled by a Viceregent Snark. Local groups were called Concatenations.
The founders wanted the organization to be unconventional and unregimented. Its one aim would be “to foster the health, happiness, and long life of its members”. In a spirit of fun, names for some of the officers were inspired by Lewis Carroll’s The Hunting of the Snark. The Hoo-Hoo emblem is a black cat with its tail curled into the shape of a figure nine.