The Knights of Columbus is a Catholic men's fraternal benefit society that was formed to render financial aid to members and their families. Mutual aid and assistance are offered to sick, disabled and needy members and their families. Social and intellectual fellowship is promoted among members and their families through educational, charitable, religious, social welfare, war relief and public relief works. Dallas Council 799 was chartered on May 9, 1903 and is the second oldest Council in the state of Texas. Documents from the period indicate that members were accepted as Associate Members, not as Insurance Members. The principal reason given for that designation is that Dallas and the Southwest in general were considered to be prohibited territory for insurance purposes. Whether the reason was gunfire or the image of Texas as the wild and unruly frontier is not clear. In any case, the insurance ban was lifted shortly thereafter and insurance members were accepted.