Adopted March 3, 1998
Revised January 7, 2022
The original self-published 1876 Rules of Order by Henry Martyn Robert (1837-1923) were inspired when Robert presided over a turbulent meeting in his New Bedford church and was struck by the void in accepted parliamentary rules. Robert knew the more Pacific region of Island County which then included the San Juan Islands. As a West Point graduate military engineer, he was stationed after the Civil War on Pig War Island (also known as San Juan Island) in charge of harbor fortifications, thought necessary by the chronic Anglo-American boundary dispute in the Puget Sound that culminated in the Pig War after an American, Lyman Cutlar, shot and killed a pig belonging to the Hudson Bay Company on June 15, 1859, because it was allegedly rooting in his garden. Although this act precipitated considerable military posturing that continued on San Juan Island for many years between the British and Americans troops, there were no other shots fired in the Pig War and no casualties except the British pig. The role played by the Pig War in the development of
Robert’s Rules of Order is controversial.
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