Like most companies, our beginnings were humble. In 1901, we started with $100,000 of capital, 3 employees, and a small number of Illinois merchants, farmers, and homeowners who
purchased our fire insurance policy. Our name was Illinois Mutual Fire Insurance Company.
By the 1960s, under the leadership of Marvin E. Pritikin, we merged with Founders Mutual Insurance Company, which mainly wrote fire coverage for foundry workers, and converted to a
stock company under the name of Illinois Founders Insurance Company. We were among the first insurers to issue payments to Chicago policyholders who lost their homes as a result of
the civil unrest following the assassination of Martin Luther King in 1968. In one case, we issued payment with only a picture of the house once standing and a burnt mailbox with the
house numbers on it! We began writing liquor liability coverage, a current speciality of ours, for Illinois taverns and restaurants at the end of the 1950s.