The Improved Order of Red Men was an incredibly popular fraternal organization in Humboldt County with chapters in Eureka, Arcata, Blue Lake, Scotia, and Rio Dell. The Tomahawk pictured here was used by the Irquois Tribe (chapter) #156, which was based out of Arcata and later Eureka. Tomahawks like these were traditionally used as gavels, by rapping the knob on the back of the axe head on a table. This one, however, appears to have not been used as the finish and paint on the knob is completely intact.
The initials T.O.T.E, which appear on the back side of the Tomahawk, stand for Totem of the Eagle, the secret password for the Order. It appears on a variety of Improved Order of Red Men items, especially grave markers.