Franklin Lodge No. 264 celebrated 110 years as a lodge on June 11, 2017. The event was attended by several Franklin lodge members, local Star members, brothers from Jachin Lodge No. 146 in Holdrege, Grand Master Rick Myers and his Lady Marsha, Grand Junior Deacon Alex Straatmann and his Lady Kim.
On the Left is Brother Delbert Rogers, Past Grand Patron of Nebraska and on the right, M.W. Grand Master of Nebraska Rick Meyers of Fremont.
The presentation was of a Non-Masonic Achievement Award was made to Beverly J. McNiff as she retires from a 23-year career in the local Mid-Nebraska Community Services. She was accompanied by husband Richard. Left, Beverly J. McNiff receiving a Recognition Plaque from WM Ingram.
As we gather, Lady Marsha Meyers and Lady Kim Straatmann sitting, Mrs. Bob Wagner and Mrs. Bruce Rasmussen of Holdrege, Standing l-r GJD, Karen Duncan, Lorraine Richter, Sila Moore, Rodney, Steve Siel, Ray Winz, Bob Wagner-Holdrege.
A brief history was provided by Secretary Jerrell Gerdes, summarizing the following:
The City of Franklin was only 25 years old when our Masonic Lodge was granted a Charter as JEPTHA Lodge on June 11, 1907 by the Grand Master Ornan L. King. Turns out that name was rejected by Grand Lodge, and instead the ROLLAND H. OAKLEY LODGE #264 was the Charter name,. That name was not acceptable to the local Masons, and finally June 9, 1909 the Lodge was name Fraanklin Lodge #264 A.F.&A.M. under the signature of Grand Master William A. DeBord.
Anyway, the Franklin Lodge began on June 11, 1907 110 years ago today! The Masons met in homes, then the Conklin Building (Lipp Building), then Hutchins Furniture later Marcellus Furniture, then on November 7, 1981 the present building was dedicated. This came after 70 years of labor to find a permanent home. At the dedication, Secretary James Hill acknowledged Past Master Clarence Paulson who had served as Master for twelve years and is credited with pursuing this Temple.
During the past 110 years, Joppa Lodge #76 in Bloomington, Riveerton Lodge #63 in Riverton, and Republican City Lodge #98 have consolidated with Franklin #264. Our membership is 51 today, half of our members are absentee due to their residence in 2017. Over the 110 years, Leadership has been strong, 52 Worshipful Masters, Jerrell Gerdes serving 13 years and Clarence Paulsen serving 12 of years. Leaving 50 individuals who lead also.
Any accounting must also mark the service of Perry L. Slocum who served as Treasurer for 54 years!! Ugene Blank served 19 years!! Secretary service includes Earl Tuers Sr. who served 32 years, followed by 13 years by Steve Siel.
Following the meal, Grand Master Myers presented a short talk on the Grand Lodge of Nebraska. The Grand Master is having a Ride Across Nebraska, welcome are VINTAGE AND CLASSIC CARS, MOTORCYCLES etc. They will be staying the 29th of June in Red Cloud.