Shelby County, Indiana
Fraternal Orders and Clubs
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Photo by Michelsen Photo & Slide Company, Shelbyville, Indiana
Contributed by George Young
The Shelbyville Democrat
Shelbyville, Ind., November 28, 1914
[The beginning of the article is not on my copy.]
...secretary, H. G. Montgomery; treasurer, Edward W. Lewis; inner guard, Russell E. Goodrich; tyler, Paul C. Raymond, and esquire, Parrish Fuller.
The memorial committee consists of Frank J. Rembusch, Allen Green and Dix W. Sayler, and they have arranged an excellent program.
The program is as follows:
Overture --- Medley . . . . . . . Remick's Grand March --- "The Viking" . . . . King Orchestra.
Prayer . . . . . . . Rev. W. G. Eldred
"After Vespers" . . . . . . . A Twilight Meditation
Ceremony by Officers of Lodge.
Prayer by Chaplain . . . . . . . Thomas H. Campbell
Solo . . . . . . . Miss Margaret Birely
Eulogy . . . . . . . Henry G. Joseph
Solo --- "Thou Wilt Keep Him in Perfect Peace" . . . . Morris Sleeth
Memorial Address . . . Patrick J. Lynch
Closing Exercises . . . . . . . Lodge Doxology.
Benediction . . . . . . . Rev. W. G. Eldred
Grand Farewell March . . . . Orchestra
The deceased members of the lodge for which the annual lodge of sorrow is held are Milton B. Robins, Cassius C. Kennedy, Donald Kennedy, Frank Miller, Russell Williams, Thomas B. Convery, John Rembusch, Edwin C. Messick, A. L. Levinson, Daniel DePrez, Charles L. Davis, Charles H. Tindall, William T. d'Heur, Charles H. Campbell, Charles Major, M. R. Montgomery, Cornelius Means and Henry Friday.
Contributed by Phyllis Miller Fleming
Freemasonry was first introduced into Shelby county,
Indiana, through a dispensation from R.W. Able C. Pepper, D.G.M., November 15, 1824. The
charter issued bears date of October 5, 1825, when the lodge received the title of Lafayette Lodge No. 28, leaving
it discretionary with the members to locate the lodge in such part of the county as they might deem expedient.
Brothers: David Tracy, W.M.; Justus Ferris, S.W.; Joseph Adams,
J.W. The names of the first petitioners were: Dr. David Tracy, Justus Ferris, Joseph Adams, Percy Kitchell
and John C. Walker. At first this lodge had no fixed quarters, but met at members' houses.
Even for the three years that the lodge had to meet from place to place, it had a good growth, many of the best
citizens of Shelby county becoming members of the order during the time. Among the more prominent are the following:
Calvin Kinsley, Chandler Huntington, Erasmus Powell, Able Cole, William
Hawkins, Nathan Johnson, William Goodrich, William Little, and possibly
others whose names have been lost sight of with the passing of so many years.
The charter was surrendered and the new charter issued
under the date of November 25, 1828, constituting Erasmus Powell, worshipful master; Josiah Reed,
senior warden; Nathan Johnson, junior warden, requiring the communications of the lodge to be held
alternately at Hanover and Shelbyville, still retaining its original name and number. Under this arrangement, for
several years more the lodge seemed to prosper and other prominent citizens became its members, among whom may
be mentioned: Austin W. Morris, Amaziah Williams, Mathias Vanpelt, Harmon
Updegraff, Jacob Rice, Richard S. Cummins and William Hacker.
At the semi-annual election there were elected on July
4, 1835, William Hacker, worshipful master; James Lisher, senior warden; Harmon Updegraff,
junior warden; William Goodrich, treasurer; John Walker secretary; Chandler Huntington, senior deacon; Joseph
Thrasher, junior deacon, and John Stout, tyler.
Submitted by Jane Fullington. [Chadwick's, see below]
HIGHER DEGREE MASONRY
Baldwin Commandry, No. 2, last
evening worked on Dr. Joseph Bowlby. On next Wednesday night
Baldwin Commandry will be inspected in drill and Ritualistic work by Past Grand
Commander Nicholas Rucker, of Indianapolis.
Growing out of the original Masonic lodges within
Shelby county have come up higher degrees in this most ancient and honorable fraternity. Shelby Chapter,
No. 20, of Royal Arch Masons, was organized U.D., dated April 2, 1851, upon the petition of William
Hacker, Fabin M. Finch, Henry B. Hill, Cyrus N. Williams, Jacob W. Mills, John W.
Sullivan, Samuel White, Daniel Shew, James Elliott, Daniel Mowrer, Joseph L. Silcox
and Benjamin J. Irwin, companions. William Hacker was appointed high priest. This chapter has
never faltered during all these fifty-eight years of noble work. In 1909 its membership was one hundred and
nineteen. Its officers at that date were: Robert W. Wood, M.E.H.P.; Julius L. Thomas, E.K.; Wilbur
W. Israel, E.S.; John Messick, treasurer; George W. F. Kirk, secretary; G[arnett] R[othrock] Fleming, C.of H.; Frank Bass, P.S.; Edmond R. Moberly, R.A.C.; Phillip E.
Hoop, G.M.3dV.; Oliver J. Glessner, G.M.2dV.; L. Gordon Teal, G.M.1stV.; C[aughey] S[teeley] Fleming, sentinel.
Shelby Council, No. 3, of Royal and Select Masters,
was first organized U.D., dated August 31, 1855, and a charter granted by the Grand Council of Ohio. This council participated in the organization of the grand council of Indiana, December 20, 1855, at which time it received its "No. 3" registry of the grand council of Indiana and in 1886 numbered in membership, thirty-five. In April the membership was sixty. Its officers at that date were: Julius L. Thomas, Thrice Ill.M.; Harry S. Downey, Rt. Ill.D-M.; Frank Bass, Ill.P.C.W.; John A. Young, treasurer; George W.F. Kirk, recorder; Robert W. Wood, C.G.; Thomas E. Yarling, C.C.; C.S. Fleming, steward; Thomas E. Newton, sentinel.
Baldwin Commandery, No. 2, Knights Templar, was first
organized March 25, 1851, at the town of Greensburg, Decatur county, under the title of Greensburg Commandery,
U.D. from M.E. William Blackstone Hubbard, G.G. Master of Knight Templar of the United States, dated January
5, 1851. This commandery participated in the formation of the Grand Commandery of Indiana, when it received
its "No. 2," on the registry, and continued to work until June 30, 1860, when its members ceased to meet
and the organization was dissolved. But upon the petition of Sir Knights Thomas Pattison, William
Allen, Jacob Vernon, Thomas H. Lynch, Daniel Stewart, Barton W. Wilson, James Gavin,
Putnam Ewing, Jacob V Berensdaffer, Will C. Cumback, James Elliott, Robert Cones
and John Elliott, Sir William Hacker as grand commander, authorized the transfer of the commandery
to Shelbyville, Indiana, on the 18th day of March, 1865. April 4, 1866, the commandery received a new charter
and was changed to Baldwin Commandery, No. 2. By 1886 this commandery enjoyed a membership of sixty-two knights,
which number has increased to ninety-six. Its present  officers are: Julius L. Thomas, E.C.;
Frank Bass, Gen.; Everett E. Stroup, C.Gen.; Thomas E. Yarling, S.W.; Edward P. Moberly,
J.W.; Harry S. Downey, prelate; John Messick, treasurer; George W. Kirk, recorder; Phillip
E. Hoop, St.B.; Elliott S. Gorges, Sw.B.; Oliver Jay Glessner, warder; C.S. Fleming, sentinel.
The present officers of Shelby Lodge, No. 28, Free
and Accepted Masons, at Shelbyville are as follows: Thomas E. Yarling, worshipful master; Harry G.
Auman, senior warden; Elmer E. Webster, junior warden; David L. Wilson, secretary; John Messick,
treasurer; L. Gordon Teal, senior deacon; Robert H. Mardis, junior deacon; Eden H.D. Young, tyler.
The Masonic order in Shelbyville has of late leased
its lodge-room quarters. From 1852 to 1869 they owned a half interest in the building erected by themselves and
the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, the three-story brick building on the northeast corner of the public square,
the one now occupied by business and other offices. This property cost in all, five thousand five hundred
dollars and was sold (the half interest) to the Odd Fellows in 1869, for about three thousand five hundred, which
money the Masons have had out on interest and had their lodge home in the DePrez building for over thirty years.
In 1899 they loaned this sum to the parties who erected the business block on South Harrison street, in which
the lodge is now located, and of which they have a long lease. Their hall is finely furnished and work in
all degrees up to the Scottish Rite is carried on here with excellent effect. Those advanced to the last
named rite attend at Indianapolis.
Chadwick's History of Shelby County, Indiana, by Edward H. Chadwick, B.A., assisted by well known local
talent, B.F. Bowen & Co, Publishers: Indianapolis, IN, 1909, pp 165-167.
Contributed by Phyllis Miller Fleming
The Shelbyville Daily Democrat
Friday, September 29, 1899
Contributed by Phyllis Miller Fleming
History of Freemasonry in Shelby County.
Freemasonry was introduced into Shelby Countv, Indiana, in an organized form, by dispensation from R. W. Abel, C. Pepper, D. G. M., November 15, 1824. The charter issued, bears date, October 5, 1825, when the lodge received the title of Lafayette Lodge No. 28, leaving it discretionary with the members to locate the lodge in such part of
the county as they might deem most expedient. Brothers: David Tracy, W. M.; Justus Ferris, S. W.; Joseph Adams, J. W. Names of the first petitioners: Dr. David Tracy, Justus Ferris, Joseph Adams, Percy Kitchell and John C. Walker, five in number. The lodge had no fixed location, but met at the member's houses. The lodge for the three years it remained without a permanent location, had considerable prosperitv; manv of the prominent citizens of the county becoming member, either by initiation of affiliation. Among the more prominent are the names of Calvin Kinsley, Chandler Huntington, Erasmus Powell, Abel Cole, William Hawkins, Nathan Johnson, William Goodrich, William Little, and others. This charter was surrendered, and a new charter issued under date of November 25, 1828, constituting Erasmus Powell, W. M.; Josiah Reed, S. W., and Nathan Johnson, J. W., requiring the communications of the lodge to be held alternately at Hanover and Shelbvville, still retaining its original name and number. Under this arrangement the lodge for several years more seemed to prosper, and other prominent citizens became members, among whom are the names of the following brethren, viz.: Austin W. Morris, Amaziah Williams, Matthias Vanpelt, Harmon Updegraff, Jacob Rice, Richard S. Cummins, and William Hacker. At the semi-annual election held on the 4th day of July, 1835, the following officers were elected, to-wit: William Hacker, W. M.; James Lisher, S. W.; Harmon Updegraff, J. W.; William Goodrich, Treasurer; John Walker, Secretary; Chandler Huntington, S. D.; Joseph Thrasher, J. D., and John Stout, Tyler.
In consequence of having to keep up what really amounted to two organizations, one in Hanover, and the other at Shelbyville, it soon became evident that the lodge would have to dissolve its then existing organization. Accordingly on the 25th of June, 1836, by formal resolution, the charter was surrendered to the Grand Lodge, which, however, was never called for by the Grand Lodge, but remained in the hands of the then W. M., William Hacker, until the meeting of the Grand Lodge in 1S45, when the Grand Lodge granted permission to the lodge to reorganize and resume labor. At the communication of the Grand Lodge in 1845, application for a restoration of the charter was made which was granted, and the location of the lodge permanently fixed at Shelbyville. From this time forth the lodge has met with much prosperity, and good success has attended its labors. The following were the petitioners for the re-organization of the lodge, to-wit: Stephen D. Ludlow,
William Hacker, James Elliott, William W. McCoy, Jacob Rice, Woodville Browning, Jesse Smith, John Morrison, Nathaniel Teal, and Harmon Updegraff. May 26, 1852, the Grand Lodge changed the title from Lafayette Lodge No. 28, to that of Shelby Lodge No. 28, under which the lodge is still successfully at work, and now
numbers 152 members. This lodge has furnished two Grand Masters of Indiana, two Grand High Priests and two Eminent Grand
William Hacker Lodge, U. D., dated January 3, 1867, was located at the city of Shelbyville, Shelby County, upon the petition of Thomas F. Kirk, William M. Parrish, Joseph L. Irwin, William
F. Mason, Daniel J. Shaw, John S. Tevis and David L. Conrey. June 3, 1867, the lodge was regularly constituted under charter dated May 29, 1867, as William Hacker Lodge No. 360; Brother Jesse K. Jameson being appointed W. M.; William F. Green, S. W., and John Messick, J. W. This lodge, though the youngest of the family of Masonic organizations, in Shelby County, numbered thirty-six members in 1871. This lodge was subsequently merged in the parent lodge, Shelby Lodge No. 28, under date of June 11,1879.
History of Shelby County, Indiana, Brant & Fuller, 1887, Chicago, pages 421-422.
Contributed by Phyllis Miller Fleming for Darrell Smith
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Benevolent and Protective Order of the Elks
52 West Washington, first home.
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