Office (320) 254-3233
Fax (320) 254-7241

Toll Free (800) 535-8758


About North Fork Mutual

The following information from the company's archives outlines how North Fork Mutual was established and has progressed to be the fine company it is today.

In 1874 the Minnesota Legislature passed laws to permit Township Mutual Fire Insurance Companies to write fire insurance policies. This was done because fire insurance was extremely expensive and very diffi­cult, if not impossible, to obtain in rural Minnesota. It is reported that the Minnesota Commissioner of insur­ance at the time said he doubted any company organized under the new law would succeed, but they must be allowed to try, and no doubt fail.

Undaunted by the insurance commissioner's sentiments, North Fork Mutual was founded by Norwegian settlers, on February 11, 1882, in North Fork Township, Stearns County, Minnesota. The meeting was held at the Big Grove Store in North Fork Township. The company was initially named Svea Norden Mutual Assurance Company. A second organizational meeting was held on February 25, 1882, for some rea­son, not indicated in the meeting minutes, the company's name was changed to Farmers Gjensidige Assurance Seiskab (Farmers Mutual Assurance Company). The constitution and bylaws were drafted, printed and insur­ance forms were authorized. All insurance forms and the constitution & bylaws were written in Norwegian. Among the earliest company rules that were established were the prospective insured had to have a minimum of $400.00 of insurable property to become a member. The premium rates were a policyholder membership fee of $1.50 and 20 cents per 100 for each $100 dollars of insurance coverage.

No insurance policies were issued in 1882, apparently there was a problem getting the insurance forms processed. The company's first annual meeting was held in North Fork Township, on January 2, 1883, at the home of T.J. Anderson. The initial operating territory of the company authorized was Crow Lake, Crow River, Lake George and North Fork Townships in Stearns County. The company constitution and bylaws were translated to the English language and published. Meeting minutes, insurance policies and forms continued to be written in Norwegian. By 1884, the company records indicate there were 50 policyholders and a treasury balance of $66.51.

The company was incorporated in 1905. The corporation was made perpetual in 1934. The name of the company evolved to be Farmers Mutual Insurance Company of North Fork. In 1957 the company was renamed North Fork Mutual Fire Insurance Company. In 1985 the company built and occupied the company's office building on main street (401 Washburn Ave) in Belgrade, Minnesota.

North Fork Mutual has survived and grown over the years for several reasons. Some of those reasons are providing superior service and quality insurance coverage to our policyholders, providing claims service that is prompt and fair, sound underwriting, property safety survey services, responsible investment policies and adequate reinsurance programs. I think the number 1 reason our company has succeeded is North Fork has striven to keep our policyholders best interests before us, as our guiding business principle. North Fork's continuing business philosophy is reflected in the company's Mission Statement: North Fork Mutual Fire Insurance Company is committed to providing member policyholders with quality insurance protection and customer service at the most competitive premium cost possible.