History of Palestine Lodge No. 214

Prepared for the 50th Anniversary Celebration held on September 27, 1966.

In the fall and winter of 1915, a group of Masons held several meetings for the purpose of becoming proficient in the Washington work and with a view of petitioning the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons of Washington for a dispensation. The following brothers signed the petition:

W.H. Kaump

C.D. Ragsdale

O.E. Storch

J.W. Godfrey

P.A. Mitchell

John Scott

C.A. Palmer

Jacob Fink

G.R. Wilkinson

Charles W. Wilkinson

D.C. Worrall

F.B. Thayer

F.W. Sim

L.S. Overholt

O.E. Garner

A.V. Bailey

W.S. Shumway

Charles D. Marquette

John McClemment

Michael Hassenfratz

John A. Baker

Norris A. Wilson

The dispensation was granted on January 11, 1916 and the Most Worshipful Grand Master Robert L. Sebastian appointed W.H. Kaump as Worshipful Master, C.D. Ragsdale as Senior Warden and O.E. Storch at Junior Warden. Worshipful Master Kaump called a special meeting on January 22, 1916 in the I.O.O.F. Hall (later known as The White Elephant and was situated where the Omak Post Office now stands). After the dispensation was read, the By Laws were read and adopted which stated: The Stated communications shall be held on the second and fourth Wednesdays at 8:00 pm. The initiation fees shall be $35 payable $20 for the Entered Apprentice Degree, $10 for the Fellowcraft degree and $5 for the Master Mason degree. The annual dues shall be $5. The Worshipful Master appointed the following officers: J.W. Godfrey, treasurer; P.A. Mitchell, secretary; John Scott, Sr. Deacon, John McClemment, Jr. Deacon, C.A. Palmer, Senior Steward, D. C. Worrall, Jr. Steward, F.B. Thayer, Tyler and David Brown, Chaplain. The necessary furniture and paraphernalia was ordered and an arm chair was ordered for the Master’s station. At the meeting of February 9, 1916, the By Laws were amended to read: the second and fourth Tuesdays shall be the regular meeting nights. The dates and time has not been changed since then. It is believed that the name of the Lodge was suggested by Brother C.D. Marquette who held the office of Grand Lecturer of North Dakota. There are 18 Palestine Lodges in the USA, four of which are over 100 years old. The charter was granted on June 14, 1916 and at the meeting of September 26, 1916 the Lodge was constituted by Grand Lodge officers. The charter was presented and read and the officers of Palestine Lodge were duly installed. According to the Tyler’s register there were over 100 Masons in attendance. Two bills were presented: one to the Pioneer Club for the banquet in the amount of $30.40 and the other was for cigars in the amount of $3.80. The first member to be raised in the Lodge was Bro. Frank Kellar on April 11, 1916.

On May 16, 1951, the following Charter members were honored by being presented with plaques denoting life membership in Palestine Lodge No. 214: Bros. C.D. Ragsdale, O.E. Storch, C.A. Palmer, C.W. Wilkinson and W.S. Shumway. Of the 22 members who signed the petition, only two are still living: O.E. Storch and C.W. Wilkinson. Neither was able to attend this meeting due to ill health.

Palestine Lodge has had a different Worshipful Master each year of its history beginning in 1916. Worshipful Brother Kaump was elected Worshipful Master in 1917 after having been appointed as Worshipful Master in 1916 by the Grand Master. Of the 50 past masters, 38 are still living, 30 are still members of Palestine Lodge and 5 have demitted to other Lodges.

As of this date, there are 144 members, of which, 45 are eligible for 25 year membership awards, 16 are eligible for 40 year membership awards, and two are eligible for 50 year membership awards and certificates. All of whom are present tonight will be honored. Members of Palestine Lodge who have already been honored with 50 year membership pins and certificates are: Bros. O.E. Storch – June 20, 1959; C.D. Ragsdale – December 22, 1959; Oscar W. Fowler – May 25, 1960; H.E. Robert – April 25, 1961. All are living except Worshipful Brother C.D. Ragsdale. We have one honorary member, Worshipful Brother William Hall of Ferry Lodge No. 111, Republic, Washington. Worshipful Brother Edgar J. Libby of Ferry Lodge No. 111 was also an honorary member but has since deceased.

The Lodge held its meetings in the I.O.O.F. hall until 1927. Due to disputes over the rent on April 11, 1922, it was voted to buy a lot for the purposes of building a Temple and $100 was paid down. On June 2, 1922, it was voted to proceed with the plans for the new building and on February 27, 1923, $200 more was paid on the lot. There is no record of what the total purchase price of the lot was. On December 14, 1926, Brother John S. Petersen reporting for the Finance Committee resolved that the new building be erected and the resolution was passed. The minutes of the meeting of December 28, 1926 stated that the annual dues were raised to $8 and the initiation fees were raised to $65. On January 25, 1927, the plans for the new building were presented and accepted and a call for bids was to be made at once but it was on April 27, 1927 that the final plans and financing were discussed. (Refer to Minutes Book No. 6). Construction must have started at once, because at the meeting of May 13, 1927, Worshipful Brother John Scott moved that all future meetings be held in the new temple and the minutes of September 27, 1927 states “First meeting held in the new Temple, (39 years ago tonight) and Brother John McClemment was reinstated.” That was all there was stated in the minutes.

At a special meeting held on November 29, 1927, the new Temple was dedicated with Most Worshipful Grand Master Robert A. Wilson in attendance.


Furnishings of the Lodge

  • The Top Hat, which has been retired, was donated by Brother Edward Gillings on March 22, 1916 and it came from London, England.
  • The Master’s Apron, also retired, and was purchased by the Lodge on November 11, 1924. Since the hat and apron have been retired, the newly elected Masters get to wear them on the night of their installation only.
  • The original Bible, also retired, was purchased by the Lodge from Rev. David Brown for $5. Worshipful Brother Floyd Marks donated the Bible presently in use now. The original Bible was purchased January 23, 1917.
  • The gavel used by the Worshipful Master was donated by Brother F. H. Howland of Albion Lodge, New York. He was the step father of Brother John G. Lovell.
  • The small picture of George Washington in the lobby was bought at the home lodge of George Washington and presented by Brother J.C. Biles. It is not certain where the large picture in the East of George Washington came from. The Minutes of February 22, 1921, stated the Worshipful Brother John Scott presented a framed picture of George Washington and the minutes of January 10, 1933 states that a picture of George Washington was presented to the Lodge by Congressman Sam B. Hill. The Grand Lodge pictures in the lobby were presented by Worshipful Brother Ed Libby.
  • The present Worshipful Master’s Chair is also somewhat of a mystery. From a reliable source, (Worshipful Brother Burt Cast) it is indicated the chair was donated by Worship Brother Kaump from a load of furniture shipped out west by him and that all Masters have sat in it. However, this has not been verified as a certainty.
  • The fireplace tools, the lights outside the Temple, the knocker on the Lodge Room door and the stand for the Lesser Lights were all made and donated by the father of Brother Elmer Casad.
  • The Tyler’s sword was presented by Brother Charles Marquette and has been used by all Tylers.
  • The present lights in the lesser lights were donated by Worshipful Brother O.E. Storch.
  • The safe was purchased from Worshipful Brother John Mackey for $25.
  • The pillars were purchased by the Lodge in 1920.
  • The pedestals and altar were made by Brother D.C. Worrall.
  • The Eastern Stars, Past Matrons, Rainbow Girls and the Rainbow Mother’s Club have all made donations to the Lodge of some kind. Especially the Eastern Star who purchased the carpet in the Lodge Room and recently carpeted the stairs and hall and most of the furnishings for the kitchen and the furniture in the lobby.


A Few Highlights

  • On April 16, 1935, by special dispensation, Palestine Lodge visited Orion Lodge No. 51, Penticton, B.C. and conferred the Master Mason Degree on Brother George Jenkins of Palestine Lodge. The apron presented to Brother Jenkins was given by Orion Lodge. The Degree was conferred by Worshipful Master L. M. Moran. Worshipful Master Moran also conferred the Entered Apprentice Degree on Worshipful Brother L.B. Nelson of Palestine Lodge in Riverside Lodge No. 112, Wenatchee, Washington for a Grand Lodge session.
  • On September 5, 1941, Palestine Lodge took part in the ceremonies of laying the cornerstone of the new Post Office building and in 1952 took part in the ceremonies of laying the cornerstone of the new High School building. Items were sealed in the box behind the cornerstone of the Post Office building (refer to the meeting minutes of September 5, 1941).
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    Stated Meetings

  • 2nd & 4th Tues of each month
  • (Dark December, January & Holidays)

  • 6:00 PM - Dinner (Pub)
  • 7:30 PM - Meeting (Lodge)
  • Physical Address

    • 7 South Ash St.
    • Omak, WA
    • 98841

    Mailing Address

    • P.O.Box 94
    • Omak, WA 98841
    • 98841

How to Become a Mason

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Stated Meetings

2nd & 4th Tuesday of each month
(Dark December, January & Holidays)

6:00 PM - Dinner at North Country Pub
7:30 PM - Meeting at Lodge