1912 - 1920
History of Mt. Washington Lodge No. 614
Ancient Free and Accepted Masons
By Past Master I. R. Coen
1912 to 1920
In attempting to record the beginnings of Mt. Washington Lodge # 614 perhaps it would be well to discover how Freemasonry came to the United States, to Missouri, and especially to Jackson County and the Mt. Washington and Fairmount districts.
We, as Freemasons like to believe, and even Masonic tradition teaches, us that our beginnings date from the building of King Solomon's Temple, which was completed in 1004 B.C. There are no written records either secular or religious to substantiate this.
There is evidence that Freemasonry existed in Scotland in 1357 AD as the Cathedral Church of Aberdeen was founded in that year and had upon it "mason's marks from the foundation up". Then there are the Schaw's Statues which ordained on December 28th, 1598 that "No Master or Fellow-of-the-craft is to be received or admitted except in the presence of six Masters and two Entered Apprentices, the Warden of the Lodge being one of the six, the date thereof being orderly booked and his name inserted in the said book".
Perhaps the most authentic of the early written records is contained in the diary of Elias Ashmore of Warrenton, Lancastershire, England. He wrote in it under date of March 10th, 1646:--"About 5 PM I received a summons to appear at a Lodge to be held the next day at Mason's Hall, London." And on March 11th: -- "Accordingly I went about noon were admitted into the fellowship of Freemasonry. I was the senior fellow among them. There were present beside myself" - and he listed eight names. The last attendance of Ashmore at a London acception was in 1682.
On St. John the Baptist's Day, June 24th, 1717, the first Grand Lodge of England was organized under the well-known Anderson Constitutions. They were called the "Moderns". They functioned harmoniously for some years but then a schism arose among the brethren and another Grand Lodge was formed in 1751 which was called the "Ancients". Both Grand Lodges worked separately for a period of about 80 years and on St. Johns the Evangelist Day, December 27th, 1813, combined under the name of the The United Grand Lodge of England. This body functions until the present day.
Masonic bodies in the United States trace their lineage to this body for it was on June 5th, 1730 that authority was given to Daniel Coxe to be the Provincial Grand Master of New Jersey and Pennsylvania.
Evidently notices concerning the meetings of the "Ancient Society of Freemasons" were published in the local paper. "The Pennsylvania Gazette". The owners of the paper were Hugh Meredith and Benjamin Franklin. Curiosity was aroused in the mind of Franklin for he petitioned the Lodge being initiated in February 1731, and raised a Master Mason in May 1731. He then was elected Junior Warden on June 24th, 1731 and Worshipful Master on June 5th, 1732. He was elected Grand Master of Pennsylvania in June 1734 and served in that capacity for two years. For over fifty years he was active in Freemasonry, not only in the United States but also in England and France.
The Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania chartered the first lodges in what is now the State of Missouri. One was at Louisiana with the number 109. This charter was arrested by then in 1824. Another one was in St. Louis, #111 but there is no record of when the lodge ceased to work.
One lodge seems to have been chartered in Missouri by the Grand Lodge of Kentucky. In August 1816 several brethren petitioned for a lodge at Potosi. The charter was granted and appeared on the rolls as late as 1818 but the charter was returned to the Grand Lodge of Kentucky in 1819.
There also seems to have been a Lodge under dispensation from the Grand Lodge of Indiana at the town of Jackson called Unity Lodge under the date of December 21, 1820. But at the annual communication of this Grand Lodge in 1821 it was learned of the establishment of the Grand Lodge of Missouri, and the following resolution was proposed and adopted by them - "Resolved, that as this Grand Lodge has a perfect confidence in the skill and ability of the Brethren of Unity Lodge under dispensation, that they be permitted to separate from this Grand Lodge and that this Grand Lodge recommend them to the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of Missouri to be a chartered Lodge". At the annual communication of the Grand Lodge of Missouri in 1821 she was given a charter and given #6.
Provincial Grand Masters were also named for Massachusetts and North Carolina. For the latter a Joseph Monfort was appointed December 27th, 1767 and 20 years later the Grand Lodge of North Carolina was formed on December 27th, 1787. A few years later the western part of North Carolina was severed to form the State of Tennessee. This section contained several Lodges under charter from the Grand Lodge of North Carolina who formed the Grand Lodge of Tennessee on December 27th, 1813.
Several Lodges were chartered by the latter Grand Lodge in Missouri Territory, among them were:
Missouri #12, St. Louis, chartered October 3rd, 1815
Joachim #25, Herculaneum, chartered October 6th, 1819
St. Charles #28, St. Charles, chartered October 6th, 1819
Representatives from these Lodges met in St. Louis on February 21st, 1821, to consider the formation of a Grand Lodge in Missouri.
Another meeting was held on April 23rd, 1821, and the Grand Lodge of Missouri formed with these Lodges:
Missouri #1, St. Louis
Joachin #2, Herculaneum
St. Charles #3, St. Charles
with these officers:
Thomas F. Reddick, Grand Master
James Kinnerly, Senior Grand Warden
William Bates, Junior Grand Warden
Archibald Gamble, Grand Treasurer
William Renshaw, Grand Secretary
The above two meetings should be classed as organizational and the first official communication of the Grand Lodge of Missouri was in October 1821.
Thus it can be seen that Missouri Freemasonry can be traced all the way back to the Grand Lodge of England.
On its trek to the western part of the state, Freemasonry seemed to follow the route of the Missouri River as lodges were established in Jefferson City, Booneville, New Franklin, and Liberty. The one in Liberty was chartered October 10th, 1840 and given the number 31. It is still a flourishing Lodge.
The first Lodge in Jackson County seems to have been in Independence. Dispensation was granted them in April 1841. At the Grand Lodge session the following fall, they were given a charter and known as Independence # 35. They had representatives at the Grand Lodge sessions of 1841 and 1842, being represented by A. Lightburn.
The last returns sent to the Grand Lodge were in 1843 but they were not represented at this communication.
From the Grand Lodge proceedings of 1845 the committee made this report: "The committee have before them communications from Worshipful Brother A. Lightburn, DDGM of District #4, from which they learn that on the petition of certain Brethren at Independence, he granted them a dispensation under name of Independence Lodge, a return of which, together with their proceedings, have been made to this Grand Lodge; and that said proceedings are in accordance with the By-Laws and Masonic usage. The committee also learns from the records of this Grand Lodge that there here-to-fore existed a chartered Lodge under the same name at the same place, from which no returns have been received for several years. Your committee respectfully recommends such action on the part of this Grand Lodge as will correct the irregularities (if any) above referred to."
In accordance with this report the Grand Lodge appointed a committee composed of Brethren from Liberty Lodge #31 to examine into the state of Independence # 35.
Again, quoting from the 1843 proceedings: "Brother Billon presented the following, via: "Whereas it appears that Brother A. Lightburn, DDGM of District #4., has granted a Dispensation for a new Lodge to be called Independence, to be held at the same place, whose returns having been received and approved by this Grand Lodge, entitle them to a Charter, which they respectively ask for, but insomuch as there is already a Lodge held at the same place, and under the same name, towit: Independence #35, as appears from the list of Chartered Lodges, from which nothing has been heard officially for some two years, therefore:
1st Resolved, That until the facts in regard to the existance or otherwise, of old Independence # 35, can be ascertained, a charter cannot be issued under the sane name to the new Lodge.
2nd Resolved, That the dispensation issued by Brother Lightburn be continued in force until the next Grand Annual Communication."
Nothing is recorded in the Grand Lodge proceedings of 1846 concerning the report given by the Brethren from Liberty and it is not recorded whether the Charter of Independence #35 was voluntarily surrendered or it was ordered arrested but the other Independence Lodge which was under dispensation was granted a Charter on October 14th, 1846 and given the number 76. It has been said that so many members of #35 "contracted the gold fever" there were not sufficient members left to carry on the affairs of the Lodge.
It is noted in the first quote of from the Grand Lodge proceedings that a District Deputy Grand Master granted the dispensation for what later became Independence #76. That is quite different from the present day when according to Grand Lodge Law that is a prerogative of the Grand Master. Were the District Deputy Grand Masters invested with more powers in those days?
Other Lodges in Jackson County but now defunct are:
- Golden Square #107 in Westport chartered May 10th, 1849, whose charter was arrested by Grand Master J. W. Boyd in October 1886;
- Sibley #115 at Sibley, chartered May 10, 1850, but surrendered it in 1863 perhaps as a result of the Civil War;
- Shawnee #10 at a now forgotten town of New Santa Fe, chartered May 6th, 1858, surrendered in 1863, another possible victim of the Civil War;
- Lone Jack #232, at Lone Jack, chartered October 12th, 1870 and surrendered in 1877;
- Oak Grove #336 at Pink Hill, chartered October 12th, 1870 and surrendered October 3rd, 1873;
- Fides #543 in Kansas City, chartered October 15th, 1890 but after only two months consolidated with Heroine #104.
The Lodges now located in Jackson County but chartered before Mt. Washington are:
- Independence #76 - October 14th, 1846
- Heroine #104 - May 10th, 1849
- Kansas City #220 - May 30th, 1861
- Summit #263 (Lees Summit) - October 15th, 1868
- Temple #299 - October 15th, 1868
- Rural #316 - October 12th, 1869
- McDonald #324 - October 15th, 1869
- Raytown #391 - October 13th, 1871
- Christian #392 (Oak Grove) - October 13th, 1871
- Buckner #501 - October 11th, 1877
- Gate City #522 (Kansas City) - October 11th, 1883
- Blue Springs #337 - October 13th, 1887
- Southgate #547 - October 15th, 1890
- Westport #340 - October 11th, 1894
- Albert Pike #219 - October 17th, 1895
- York #563 - October 17th, 195
- Ivanhoe #446 - October 17th, 1901
Dispensations were granted in 1911 to Mt. Washington on March 7th, to Swope Park on June 16th, and Grandview on June 23rd and at the Grand Lodge session that fall these three Lodges were granted charters on Settember 28th, 1911 with Mt. Washington being given #614, Swope Park #617 and Grandview #618.
Since then these Lodges in Jackson County have been granted charters:
- Sheffield #624 - October 25th 1912
- Eastgate #630 - October 21st 1913
- Northeast #643m - September 21st 1916
- Grain Valley #644 - September 21st 1916
- Orient #546 - September 22nd 1920
- Country Club #636 - September 21st 1921
- Cecile-Daylight #305 - October 17th 1923
- Rockhill #663 - October 28th 1925
- Marlborough #369 - October 26th 1927
Perhaps the two men most influential in advancing the cause of Freemasonry in the Mt. Washington/Fairmount district were Dr. William L. Gillmor and Charles S. Scrivner, a Methodist minister whose pastorate was the Mt. Washington Methodist Church. Dr. Gillmor was a well known physician and surgeon who had a wide practice not only in the immediate vicinity but also in the eastern part of Kansas City and all over Independence.
Through their aggressiveness, combined with the efforts of Loius E. Holland of the Holland Engineering Company and Thomas H. Knight, who was a Justice of the Peace, they were able to get a petition signed by 25 members of the Fraternity asking that a Lodge be established in the district. This petition was presented to the Most Wordshipful Brother Clay C. Bigger, the Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Missouri. After due investigation he saw fit to issue the dispensation dated February 27th, 1911 and attested by John R. Parsons, the Grand Secretary.
Most Worshipful Brother Bigger was unable to be present when Mt. Washington Lodge, U. D., was set to work. he delegated Right Worshipful Brother Leon Thalman, District Deputy Grand Master of the 22nd Masonic District, to call a special Communication of the Grand Lodge to March 7th 1911, for the purpose of setting the Lodge at work. The place of meeting was on the second floor of a building which was on the south-west corner of Independence Road (now Wilson Road) and Arlington. This building is still standing.
The first officers were:
William L. Gillmor, W. M.
Charles S. Scivner, S.W.
H. C. Buckley, J. W.
Charles W. Hibler, Treasurer
Emmett G. Reid, Secretary
C. A. Lester, S. D.
Arthur Riggs, J. D.
Claude L. Ream, Chaplain
Arthur C. price, S.S.
Thomas H. Knight, J.S.
George S. Shelton, Tyler
Others that were charter members on account os signing the petition for dispensation were: Frank J. Allen, William H. Chitwood, William S. Clark, Jospeh G. Davis, Herman Hermelink, Loius E. Holland, James M. Leedy, Ross J. Ream, Henry P. Henick, Bert T. Ritter, Charles W. Smith, Paul P. Solschied, J. S. Stone, and John H. Twyman.
The charter members came from 14 different Lodges. Nine different Lodges in Jackson County gave members:
- Gate City# 522 surrendered 6
- York #563 surrendered 3
- Temple #299 surrendered 3
- Southgate #547 surrendered 2
- Ivanhoe @446 surrendered 2
- Rural #316 surrendered 1
- Independence #76 surrendered 1
- Buckner #501 surrendered 1
- McDonald #324 surrendered 1
Petitions for the degrees presented that night were signed by Harley L. Ferguson, Joseph E. Lassister, George R. Baker, Fred Winterbottom, Harry H. Wells, William C. Chamberlin, and James L. Peek.
At the next regular meeting, March 21st, three petitions were read but only two of them were received as someone objected to the other and it was not received.
On April 4th, 1911, one petition for the degrees was received and one petition for membership. Waiver of jurisdiction was granted to McDonald Lodge #324 on a petition for the degrees. The proper time having elapsed, ballot was spread and all seven of the petitioners of March 7th were elected to receive the degrees. The outcome of the election evidently surmised as two of them, Harley L. Ferguson and Joseph E. Lassister received their Entered Apprentice degrees that night.
Among the bills presented on April 18th, 1911 was one for the rent on the hall for the month of April in the amount of $10.00and one for a dozen Lambskin Aprons for $6.00
The first record of the rejection of a candidate for the degrees by means of the ballot was noted in the minutes of May 2nd. It was also noted that the secretary was ordered to return the fee of $15.00
The first special session noted in the early minutes was on May 23rd at which the Master Mason Degree was conferred on Harley L. Ferguson and Joseph E. Lassister, the two who received their first degrees on April 4th and were the first ones to receive any degrees in Mt. Washington Lodge, U. D. Only 49 days has elapsed between the Entered Apprentice Degree and the Master Mason Degree. This was legal in those days as it was not a Grand Lodge Law for 28 days to elapse between degrees at that time. Just when that law went went into effect is not known at the present time but it was contained in the Grand Lodge Law in the 1921 revision. It was more than likely passed at the 1920 communication.
A bill of $11.60 for lumber was presented at the June 6th communication by Bert T. Ritter. Brother Ritter signed the petition for dispensation thus making him a charter member. He had been superintendent of the Mt. Washington school district for some time. He taught the Manual training class and coached the basketball team. Pressure was placed on him to become an officer of the Lodge but he refused as he wanted to devote his time to the youth of the community and he was loved by everyone of them.
The boys in the team and manual training class, noting his sacrifice, wanted to do something to show their appreciation. They approached him asking what they could do. After some study Brother Ritter drew up some plans, made out a bill of lumber, and confronted them with the proposition that they construct an altar for the use of the new Lodge. This was agreeable, the alter was constructed of solid oak and nicely finished. It is still in use after fifty years and as sturdy as ever.
After retiring from his school duties Brother Ritter moved to Manitou, Colorado, where he became an instructor for guides in the Caves of the Winds. He received his 50 year pin on March 23rd, 1956. He still resides in Manitou, Colorado.
Ir was also at this meeting of June 6th that a petition for the degrees was received which was signed by Gregg B. Christy. Several things should be noted concerning this petitioner. He was born in St. Loius, Missouri, on November 2nd 1874 and moved to the Kansas City area in 1905. He received his Entered Apprentice degree on July 4th 1911, Fellowcraft degree on July 18th, and Master Mason degree on August 1st. He was appointed to act as Marshall for the year 1913. He was elected Treasurer for 1914, Junior Warden for 1915, Senior Warden for 1916, and Worshipful Master for 1917, being the first petitioner to receive ALL his degrees in Mt. Washington Lodge and to then be elected Master of the Lodge. In 1918 he was elected Secretary and served in that capacity through 1960. He asked that he not be re-elected for 1961. It can be seen that he has been one of the guiding lights of the Lodge almost from it's very beginning.
In the meantime it was noted that in the minutes of July 18th that the cash balance on hand was $37.28
A direct quote from the minutes of August 1st: " A committee representing the Masonic Lodges in Jackson County excepting those within the boundaries of Kansas City, Missouri was entertained. Object being to have set apart another Masonic district to include all that area outside the boundaries of Kansas City, Missouri." A motion made and seconded Mt. Washington Lodge UD., signified it's "willingness to extend all assistance possible to get this done."
On August 22nd a special meeting was held which was the last one to be held under dispensation at which time a Fellowcraft Degree was conferred.
At the Grand Lodge session in St. Loius a charter was granted to Mt. Washington on September 28th 1911 and the number 614 was assigned. It was also at this session that charters were granted to Swope park #617 and Grandview #618. All these charters were dated September 28th 1911. Another matter of business before the Grand Lodge was the matter of separating "the City Lodges from the country Lodges in Jackson County". As a result the 59th District was established and Allan McDowell Hoyt was appointed District Deputy Grand Master.
A special session of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge was held on the evening of October 17th 1911 in the hall of Mt. Washington Lodge the purpose of which was to ballot for officers, dedicate the hall, and constitute Mt. Washington Lodge #614 into a regular Lodge.
William L. Gillmor was elected W. M.
Charles S. Scrivner was elected S. W.
H. C. Buckley was elected J. W.
James L. Peek was elected Treasurer
Emmett C. Reid was elected Secretary
The appointed officers were:
Charles W. Smith - S.D.
Charles W. Hibler - J. D.
Arthur C. Price - S. S.
Thomas H. Knight - J. S.
Joseph E. Lassister - Tyler
Claude L. Ream - Chaplain
Fred Winterbottom - Marshall
All of these were installed by the Acting Grand Master who was again Leon Thalman, DDGM of the 22nd District. It should be noted that three of these officers, James L. Peek, Joseph E. Lassister, and Fred Winterbottom had petitioned the Lodge on the night it was set to work under dispensation. Also there petitions for the degrees were received on this night of constitution.
Perhaps some of the Lodges in Kansas City were not friendly toward Mt. Washington because waivers were asked of them but it is noted in the minutes of November 21st that they refused to grant waivers. Howver on the same night Mt. Washington granted waivers of jurisdiction to McDonald #324.
A petition for the degrees was received on December 5th 1911 signed by James Blake who later became Master.
Charles N. Scriver - W.M.
H. C. Buckley - S.W.
Charles W. Smith - J.W.
James L. Peek - Treasurer
Emmett G. Reid - Secretary
Election December 5th 1911, Installation December 15th 1911.
Brother C. A. Lester, Charter Member dimitted February 12th, the first annual banquet of the Lodge was held on March 7th.
Just how much property or furniture the lodge has acquired by May 21st 1912 is not definitely known but it is known that an insurance policy was taken out on that date in the amount of $500.00. It is also on this date that the DDGM, Allan McDowell Hoyt, made a visit to the Lodge but evidently not an official one as the official one was made on June 18th.
One of the first members to petition the Lodge, Harley L. Fergusson, whose petition was presented on the night the Lodge was set to work under dispensation and the first to receive his Master Mason Degree, purchased a pair of pillars to be used in the Fellowcraft lecture from Gate City Lodge #522 and presented them to Mt. Washington Lodge #614 on July 16th. They are in use today.
Although Mt. Washington has been under charter only a little over a year, the Worshipful Master was looking into the future for on November 19th he formed a committee to inquire into the purchase of lots which could be held until the Lodge might deem it advisable to build a more suitable temple in which to meet. This committee asked for more time on December 3rd.
It was also at this meeting of December 3rd that three amendments were proposed. The regular meetings of the Lodge has been held on the first and third Tuesdays of each month. It was proposed that the meeting nights be changed to the second and fourth Tuesdays. It was also proposed that the Lodge "present each Past Master a jewel, the minimum cost of which was to be $12.00 and the maximum cost to be $20.00" also that the Lodge "shall secure a photograph of every Past Master and keep same hung in a conspicuous place in the Lodge Room".
Thus started a a practice which has been carried on for 50 years. Mt. Washington can be justly proud that she has a picture of each one of her Past Masters. It is a collection that will increase in value as the years pass. very few Lodges have a complete set of pictures of their Past Masters - even some of the Lodges that have been chartered since Mt. Washington. The historical value alone is worth thousands of dollars.
Charles W. Smith - W.M.
Charles W. Hibler - S.W.
J. W. Cline - J.W.
Louis E. Holland - Treasurer
Emmett G. Reid - Secretary
Election - December 3rd 1912
Installation - December 17th 1912
The petition for the degrees of John W. Brewer who later became Master was received by the Lodge on January 28th 1913 and the second annual banquet was held on March 7th.
The funeral of Worshipful Brother Charles S. Scrivner, a charter member and the second Master of the Lodge, was noted in the minute of March 19th.
The following is a verbatim copy of a letter sent to the entire membership:
Hall of Mt. Washington Lodge # 614 AF&AM
Mt. Washington, Mo
April 18, 1913
The Committee appointed to suggest ways and means to raise money towards defraying expenses of our late Brother Henry P. Renick recommends that each member of the Lodge donate the sum of $2.00 to help pay this expense, the total amount of which is One Hundred and Forty Dollars ($140.00).
Each member should remit the above sum as soon as possible.
Charles W. Smith. W.M.
(Brother Henry P. Renick was a charter member of the Lodge).
A petition for affiliation was received on April 23rd, 1913 signed by Arch E.Hicks who later became a Master. it was also proposed that the meeting nights be changed to the 2nd and 4th Fridays which was voted upon May 27th and carried. These meeting nights are still observed by the Lodge today.
The official visit of Right Wor. Bro. Allan McDowell Hoyt, DDGM was noted for May 6th, and on May 27th, Joseph G. Davis, a Charter Member was suspended for non-payment of dues.
The Lodge was growing in membership as evidenced by the per capita tax paid to the Grand Lodge on June 27th. Where-as the membership was 45 and a tax of $56.25 the year before, it was not $71.25 on a membership of 57 at $1.25 each.
The year 1913 was very productive of future Past Masters, as has already been noted there were the petitions of John W. Brewer and Arch E. Hicks. Now came the petitions of Ralph P. peach on August 8th; Ulysses S. Hayes on August 22nd; and Frank L. Oatman on September 26th. This was also the year when the first visit by any of the officers to the Grand Lodge session was made.
Charles W. Hibler - W.M.
James M. Leedy - S.W.
Louis E. Holland - J.W.
Gregg B. Christy - Treasurer
Emmett G. Reid - Secretary
Election - December 12th 1913
Installation - January 9th 1914
The financial statement presented to the Lodge as of January 1st, 1914 shows that there may have been some monetary problems. It covers two years.
Financial Statement January 1st, 1913
Warrants drawn in 1912 but unpaid: $103.33
Cash on hand: $1.53
Net deficit, January 1st, 1913: $ 102.00
Financial Statement January 1st, 1914
Cash collected and paid to Treasurer in 1913: $846.50
Total warrants drawn: $ 617.58
Cash on hand January 1st, 1914: $ 126.58
1913 dues remaining unpaid: $ 18.00
Total cash on hand and unpaid dues: $144.92
Total membership January 1st, 1914 -- 71 members
As will be seen by simple arithmetic there is a discrepancy here of $2.00 in the bookkeeping but these are the figures as set down in the minutes.
The Lodge seemed to have been maintained with other Lodges as many invitations were received to meet with them and help with the conferring of the degrees. Many invitations were also sent out.
The third anniversary of the Lodge was celebrated in May 1914. The dues paid to the Grand Lodge on June 26th was $92.50 on 74 members, and the financial statement listed July 10th read thusly:
Cash on hand: $ 33.91
Cash received: $49.50
Waarents drawn: $9.57
Cash in treasury: $73.84
Money was spent for refreshments then as now. From time immemorial and until the of time the inner man must be served. There will always be fork and knife Masons. On November 27th, the bill for refreshments consisted of cider, doughnuts, and cigars in the sum of $5.20
The Secretary was ordered on November 13th to serve notice to each resident member that a vote would be taken on the removal of the Lodge to Moss Hall at a rent of $12.50 per month. On the proper date the vote was taken and resulted in the affirmative but the Grand Master F. W. Cotton, refused to allow such a move so a lease was executed for one year with the Commercial State Bank on the present hall at $12.50 per month.
Moss Hall was located across the street from the place of meeting and there was more room to be had. Just why the Grand Master refused the request for moving is not known but it was probably because Moss Hall was used quite frequently for public dances, political meetings, and various kinds of meetings, and in those days drinking was prevalent at those kinds of meetings.
James M. Leedy - W.M.
Louis E. Holland - S.W.
Gregg B. Christy - J.W.
Fred Score - Treasurer
Malcolm C. McLeod - Secretary
Election December 11th 1914
Installation - January 8th 1915
The annual financial statement was prepared by the outgoing Secretary.
Cash on hand January 1st, 1914 $ 126.92
Cash collected and paid to treasurer $628.50
Warrants drawn in 1914 $685.53
Cash on hand December 31st 1914 $ 69.98
Unpaid dues December 31st 1914 $ 102.50
Interest accumulated $ 173.39
Membership January 1st 1914 71
December 31st 1914
Master Masons 80
Entered Apprentices 2
A petition has been presented to the Lodge on December 11th, 1914 to raise the dues from $3.00 per year to $4.00 per year. This motion was tabled on February 12th 1915. It was again taken up on October 5th with vote being taken on November 26th resulting in the raising of the dues to $4.00
Some difficulty seems to have arisen with Gate Lodge #522. They requested dim its on February 12th on Brothers Vernon A. Simmons and Claude L. Ream who they had elected to membership by letters of good standing. Mt. Washington #614 denied that they had issued the letters and the Secretary was ordered to write a letter to the DDGM, Allan McDowell Hoyt, concerning the matter. Just what was the outcome of the investigation is not stated but the letters of good standing were issued to Simmons and Ream on March 12th. Claude L. Ream was one of the charter members.
Disbursements for April 9th consisted of:
For refreshments: Sugar 25c, coffee 35c, milk 10c, buns 40c, Ham 85c, cheese 35c -- total $2.30
For stationery: 500 letterheads - $3.50
A special communication was held on April 16th at which "There were some very nice apples served which were appreciated by all." And then on April 23rd two and one half gallons of coffee was purchased ay the cost of 50c. Flowers were also bought for a Brothers wife for 50c.
Some trouble must have been experienced in the collection of dues. The Secretary sent notices to some of the brethren who were as much as three years behind. But when it became time for their appearance to show cause why they should not be suspended for non-payment it was necessary to suspend but one. This was on June 27th.
It is not clear if the committee named on November 19th 1912 "to inquire into purchase of lots which could be held until the Lodge might deem it advisable to build" was continued each year but a building committee did make a report on July 9th. The Lodge authorized them to consult an attorney about forming a stock company and on July 23rd they had started to form a company and 47 shares of stock were spoken for by the brethren present. On October 22nd the Lodge gave $25.00 to the Mt. Washington Masonic Building Association.
Gifts to charitable organizations noted during 1915 were $25.00 to the Mercy Hospital Fund and $2.00 to fight tuberculosis through Christmas Seals. It is also noted that a collection was taken for the aid of a Brother who needed medicine which totaled $17.05.
Louis E. Holland - W.M.
Gregg B. Christy - S.W.
James Blake - J.W.
Fred Score - Treasurer
Malcolm C. McLeod - Secretary
Election - December 10th 1915
Installation - January 7th 1916
Mt. Washington Lodge was highly honored January 28th by a visit in the person of Most Worshipful Brother William F. Kuhn, Past Master of Missouri. There is very little doubt that he was asked to make some remarks and what a pity it is they not were contained in the minutes. Dr. Kuhn was appointed Grand Orator of the Grand Lodge of Missouri in 1893 and soon gained a wide reputation as an eloquent and fluent Masonic speaker. He was elected Grand Master in 1903 and served in due time as head of all the York Rite bodies in the State of Missouri. At the time of his death he was serving as General Grand High Priest of the General Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons. He was in constant demand all over the United States as a Masonic speaker. Harry C. Buckley, Charter Member dimitted from the Lodge March 10th.
There was a motion made and carried on March 24th that the Junior Past Master, James Leedy, be authorized to buy a bolt of cloth to be used in making aprons. And on April 28th the Junior Warden signed a complaint against a Brother for un-Masonic conduct. The trial was held in the Lodge Room on May 19th. At the conclusion of the trial 37 of the members voted guilty and 6 not guilty. On the voting for the penalty to be given 36 voted for expulsion and 10 against.
In this year of 1916 the petitions for the degrees of two more future Past Masters were presented - one signed by Harrison Shiffner on April 14th and one signed by Fred K. Both on October 27th. And it was on August 19th that the Lodge raised its one hundredth member. It was on September 22nd that the fees for the degrees was raised - EA $15.00, FC $10.00, and MM $5.00.
Although the Lodge had been buying shares in the Mt. Washington Masonic Building Association as noted on October 13th 1916, yet it was evident that they were behind on the rent because on November 10th a warrant was put through for 7 months rent or a total of $87.50. Then on November 24th a committee was appointed to see about fires on meeting nights. (Days of the old pot-bellied stove no doubt).
Gregg B. Christy - W. M.
James Blake - S.W.
Arch E. Hicks - J.W.
Ray Van Benthuysen - Treasurer
Fred Score - Secretary
Election - December 8th 1916
Installation - January 12th 1917
A petition for the degrees was received on January 28th signed by Roy L. Conkey who later became Master.
On February 9th the Master instructed the Secretary to contact the proper authorities and inform them of the "bad" condition of the door lock and a window shade.
The Treasurer resigned on April 27th and Paul Ford was appointed to the position. He was elected and installed into that office on July 27th.
The Worshipful Master appointed a finance committee on July 13th. They made their report on August 10th reporting that there was $368.63 in the treasury. On this same date the Lodge purchased more shares in the Building Association.
Evidently the same hall was occupied by the Woodmen and the Oddfellows because the Master appointed a committee on July 27th to confer with them regarding the procuring of a fan. There seems to be no report of this committee in the minutes for the year.
James Blake - W.M.
Arch E. Hicks - S.W.
John W. Brewer - J.W.
Paul C. Ford - Treasurer
Gregg B. Christy - Secretary
Election - December 14th 1917
Installation - January 11th 1918
Thus started a service of 43 years as Secretary for Worshipful Brother Christy. Add to this the five years in the other offices as Marshall, Treasurer, Junior Warden, Senior Warden, and Worshipful Master and it is found that 48 years of his life has been given to the Lodge, or over half of it.
The Lodge agreed to to pay the hospital expenses for one of its members on April 12th and also purchased a Liberty Loan Bond for $50.00. Another $50.00 bond was purchased on October 11th. They also paid a per capita tax to the Grand Lodge in the amount of $232.75 that year.
The petitions of two future Past Masters were presented during the year. One was signed by Charles T. Tunget presented on July 26th and one signed by Fred J. Tudor presented on December 27th.
A resolution to raise the fees for the degrees to $45.00 - EA $20.00, FC $ 15.00 and MM $10.00 was presented on September 27th but it was defeated when voted on December 13th.
The first record of a special for the purpose of giving Masonic Burial for a deceased Brother was noted for Sunday October 27th, this was for Artur Riggs, a Charter Member. On another special on December 20th a Brother was voted not proficient.
Arch E. Hicks - W.M.
John W. Brewer - S.W.
Ralph P. Peck - J.W.
Paul C. Ford - Treasurer
Gregg B. Christy - Secretary
Election - December 13th 1918
Installation - January 10th 1919
Some of the brethren, no count, enjoyed the refreshments served at various times. Wee find that on February 21st $5.40 was spent for apples and cigars. Then on November 25th $3.67 was spent for cigar and $2.00 for cider. We trust that it was not hard cider.
An objection was made on February 21st to an Entered Apprentice advancing but on March 7th the objection was waived and the Entered Apprentice was passed to the degree of Fellowcraft.
The first mention of the name of the Brother who sat in the East to confer a degree was contained in the minutes of February 23rd.
The Worshipful Master appointed a committee of three on April 23rd "to investigate certain needs" of Mt. Washington Chapter U.D. OES. It is noted above that Arch E. Hicks was Master of the Lodge. It so happened that his wife, Gertrude Hicks, was Worthy Matron while the chapter was under dispensation.
Mt. Washington Chapter # 423 OES was placed under dispensation on April 19th and granted a charter on November 19th 1919. Brother Paul P. Solschied, a Charter Member, died on July 26 1919.
Another resolution to raise the fees for the degrees was presented on September 4th. Just when vote was taken on this resolution was noted in the minutes.
A petition by Leo N. Walker was presented on September 26th and it was on this night that a degree team dressed in kilts from York Lodge # 563, Kansas City, visited Mt. Washington # 614 to confer a Master Mason degree.
Oc October 10th, 15 petitions for the degrees were received. One of these was signed by John W. Early. Both Walker and Early later served the Lodge as Master.
The Worshipful Master appointed a committee on October 24th to formulate some plan for raising funds to erect a Masonic Temple and canvas the membership with the proposition. To assist in the formulation of the plans the OES, served free dinner to the brethren in the basement of the Methodist Church early in the month of November.
The Lodge voted on 18 petitions the night of November 14th. Of these 12 were elected to receive the degrees and 6 were rejected, and on November 28th a resolution to increase the salary of the Secretary was presented. He had been receiving $1.00 for each meeting. It was proposed that he be paid at the rate of $12.50 per month. Evidently the proposition carried as the next year warrants were drawn for that amount.
John W. Brewer - W.M.
Ralph P. Pech - S.W.
Harrison Shiffner - J.W.
Paul C. Ford - Treasurer
Gregg B. Christy - Secretary
Election - December 12th 1919
Installation - January 2nd 1920
A rabbit dinner was held for the membership on the night of installation.
A committee was appointed on January 9th to make arrangements for a Valentine's Day dance-the proceeds of which were to be used in the purchase of furniture for the new meeting hall.
A big special Saturday meeting was held on January 17th for the purpose of conferring Master Mason Degrees. Eight candidates were raised. It was noted by the Secretary that this was the largest number of candidates to be raised to the Degree of Master Mason at any one time in the history of Mt. Washington Lodge, Brother Arthur C. Price, Charter Member, dimwitted on January 22nd.
It has been stated that Mt. Washington Chapter # 423 OES has been granted their charter on November 19th, 1919. A motion was was made and carried by the Lodge on January 23rd, 1920 that the Lodge charge them $5.00 per month rent.
Two dozen White Leathers Aprons were purchased on February 13th at the cost of $44.20 or $1.85 each, having more than tripled in price in less than ten years. Also it was necessary to have the Holy Bible rebound on April 9th.
More detailed minutes of the funeral services for a deceased Brother were noted as of April 10th. Secretaries are realizing more and more the desirability of more complete minutes. Perhaps they are not needed at the time but the value to future generations increase as the years go by. Thusly, the minutes of May 28th note the name of each brother who buys a monitor, pays his dues, or for any reason pays any money to the Secretary is noted. Also on this date the rent was raised to $18.00 per month.
On June 11th a motion was made to pay the OES $15.00 rent on a piano which had been purchased by them. The motion was amended so that the Lodge paid them $45.00 or a half of he cost of the piano.
Among the bills presented on June 25th was omen from the Kansas City Light and Power Company representing two months bill for $5.57, also a bill for electrical fans and installation for $123.06. Also it was thought necessary to examine a brother on his proficiency and the pass to the next degree before voting as to his proficiency.
The first mention of an auditing committee was noted on July 9th. Saturday meetings were noted for July 10th and September 18th at each of which ten Master Mason Degrees were conferred.
Twelve petitions for the degrees were received on October 8th. One of which was signed by Edwin S. Dudley. This one was rejected on November 12th but as will be seen later he re-petitioned the Lodge a little over ten years later and was elected to receive the degrees and then later was elected Master of the Lodge.
The report of the auditing committee appointed earlier in the year was read on October 22nd. It was ordered filed. The committee was continued and ordered to make a final report later. The petition of James Nathan Johnson was also received on this date. He later became Master.
Some-what of a record was set at the meeting of November 26th when 24 brethren took their examination in the Master Mason Degree and then on the night of the annual election December 10th the Lodge subscribed the sum of $500.00 to the building fund.