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Monday, October 24, 2016

History of Freemasonry in Indiana: A Favor

I have been tasked with writing a new history of the Grand Lodge of Indiana F&AM, concentrating especially on the last 50 years. So, I have a great favor to ask of Freemasons throughout the state of Indiana, but I am intentionally casting a wider net than just posting on the appropriate Facebook pages or a blurb in our magazine. 

The late, esteemed Masonic author, Dwight L. Smith, who served as our Grand Secretary for over four decades, wrote the definitive chronicle of the Grand Lodge, Goodly Heritage, for our 150th anniversary in 1968. While my book will certainly encompass that first century and a half, I have no intention or desire to reinvent the wheel of Dwight's making. He spent two decades researching and 12 years writing it while he edited the then-monthly Indiana Freemason Magazine, and I would be fooling myself to believe I could similarly cover that same period in the kind of detail he did.

In addition, an earlier work, A History of Freemasonry in Indiana from 1806 to 1898, was written by Daniel McDonald, and it too provides great detail of earlier years. 

So, my principal task is to tell the story of the fraternity in Indiana between 1968 and today. And this is where my favor comes in. If your lodge has had a history compiled for a major anniversary or building dedication or other such event, I would very much appreciate a copy. If your lodge has been through what your members considered a time or event of great change or upheaval or improvement or innovation or catastrophe, especially in the last half century, I would like to have that information. Even if you are an individual Indiana Mason and you believed you experienced something that would be important enough to include in the book, feel free to pass that along, as well. 

All of that goes for appendant bodies in Indiana, as well. While the book will primarily be about Craft Freemasonry in our state, I would also like to include references to appendant groups that didn't make it into Dwight's book. The other bodies have influenced and affected Masonry in and out of the state, and they were mostly ignored in the two previous major works.

Likewise, if you or your lodge or appendant organization are NOT in Indiana, but took part in an event that happened in Indiana or that involved Indiana Masons specifically, and you believe it might be of interest to readers or future researchers, please send that to me, as well.

I've been waist deep in research for a year already, but these types of histories and anecdotes are difficult to come by, outside of what I have personally collected myself, or what we have in the Masonic Library & Museum of Indiana. So, I would deeply appreciate any contribution anyone would care to provide. 

I need to completely finish the entire project by next September in order to get it prepared for the printer to have it printed, bound, boxed, shipped, and ready for Founders' Day on January 13th, 2018. So, if you believe you have something for me, please forward it while you're thinking about it. 

My email address is hodapp@aol.com and do me a favor by putting "HISTORY" in the email header so I can easily spot it.

Thanks in advance, Brethren.

3 comments:

  1. Chris, I did a monograph on Monroe 22 (then Bloomington 22) in its early days when I was in college. I will look for it and if successful, shoot you a copy--typos and all, I am sure :)


    S&F
    Art Hebbeler

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you very much. It is deeply appreciated.

      Delete
  2. I would be glad to see this. I am a mason in Tennessee, but I was born and raised in Indiana, and my brother in law is a brother mason up there.

    ReplyDelete

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