Our History

Why The Name?

DeMolay takes its name from Jacques DeMolay. He was born in Vitrey, Department of Haute Saone, France in the year 1244. At the age of 21, DeMolay joined the Order of Knights Templar.

The Knights Templar was an organization sanctioned by the Roman Catholic Church in 1128 to guard the road between Jerusalem and Acre, an important port city on the Mediterranean Sea. The Order of Knights Templar participated in the Crusades and earned a name for valor and heroism.

How We Started

It has been said that a day can be changed or a great moment launched by a single phone call.

Such a call came in January of 1919. As Frank answered the telephone he recognized the voice of Sam Freet, newly installed Senior Warden of Ivanhoe Lodge. “Frank, I have a favor to ask. One of our members, Elmer E. Lower, who had been initiated as a Fellow Craft, died a year ago. Could you find a part-time job for the oldest boy, Louis? He is one of the finest young men I have ever seen.

The History of the Emblem

The four DeMolay Emblems shown in the artwork each have a date below them. These dates show when the emblems were first created and when they were used by DeMolay International as the official emblem.

While the emblems have changed over the years, one thing has remained the same over the years. On each emblem after the original in 1919, there are 10 jewels that adorn the side. What many may not know is that the jewels hold a special significance, as DeMolay’s Founder Frank S. Land explains below.

International Growth

A Growing Organization: Frank S. Land never imagined that DeMolay would spread as fast as it did. In March of 1922, DeMolay had been established in 39 of what were then the 48 United States, as well as in the District of Columbia.

It was then that Mr. Land came across the thought to spread DeMolay to other countries. He was a strong believer that DeMolay should not be limited to just the United States, and thus he set out to work.