Conrad Lodge No 271 F & AM
Conrad Lodge No 271 F & AM

HISTORY OF CONRAD LODGE #271 F. & A.M.

I. Freemasonry
II. Concise History of Conrad Lodge
III. Detailed History With Exhibits

I. Freemasonry

General information is available at www.freemason.com. For local information, contact the Lodge Secretary, Mike Zigler at (330) 823-5644. Freemasons have been involved in Alliance for over 150 years. Freemasonry is the oldest, largest and most widely recognized fraternal organization in the world. Thirteen signers of the Constitution and fourteen Presidents of the United States, including George Washington, were Freemasons. Today there are more than 2 million Freemasons in North America alone. The Mission Statement of Ohio Freemasons is: "Freemasonry provides opportunities for sincere, honest, forthright men who believe in God and desire to contribute to the improvement of their communities and themselves. Through our Masonic Fraternalism, we reaffirm our dedicatio

n and unity to become involved citizens who have a strong desire to preserve the values that have made, and continue to make America great." Freemasonry is descended from lodges of stonemasons, who built the castles and cathedrals of the middle ages. The tools and objects used by stonemasons have been adapted as symbols in the ritual and ceremonies of modern Freemasonry to teach moral lessons. Known worldwide as a symbol of character, charity and brotherly love, the Square and Compasses design is the emblem of every Masonic lodge. Today, Freemasonry is deeply involved with helping people. Masonic related groups in the United States, including Lodges, Shriners, Scottish and York Rite, Grotto and the Order of the Eastern Star, contribute more than $2 million every day to charity. Various college scholarships are also available. Conrad Masonic Lodge has made contributions of money and time to local charities and organizations through the years. Freemasons are men, age 19 and over, of good character who strive to improve themselves and make the world a better place, and have a belief in a Supreme Being. If an individual is interested in becoming a member, he can begin by contacting Conrad Lodge or speaking to a Freemason.

II. Concise History of Conrad Lodge

A Petition for Alliance Lodge was secured from the Grand Lodge during the summer months of 1855. Dispensation was granted by the Grand Master of Ohio on August 27, 1855. The Grand Lodge granted a “Charter of Regular and Constitutional Lodge of Master Masons by the Name, Style, and Title of Alliance Lodge #271 F. & A. M.” on October 25th.

The first Worshipful Master Joseph R. Conrad, who before his death would hold many positions of leadership, held the office of Worshipful Master seventeen years - a record for all Alliance blue lodges.

During 1873 several members of the Alliance Lodge met to organize a new blue lodge. J. R. Conrad and several Lodge #271 brothers developed a petition in similar fashion as that of the Alliance Lodge. Dispensation was approved on March 18, 1874. Charter was granted on October 20, 1875. The Conrad Lodge #494 F. & A. M. was begun; named after its Worshipful Master, J. R. Conrad.

The two blue lodges met and worked separat

ely for a period of almost four years. During 1879, members of Alliance Lodge passed a resolution stating it was their desire to unite with Conrad Lodge with a request that Conrad co-operate. A meeting in committee of select members from both lodges advanced the idea. The official date of the consolidation was set for April 16, 1886. From that meeting, Conrad Lodge #271 F. & A. M. began. A clerical error however, left the lodge without an Official Charter until 1929!

Between 1913 and 1920 efforts were made to buy land and build a Masonic Temple, as space previously had been rented. The Great War (W.W. I) complicated matters by disrupting financial markets and creating shortages, but the new building on S. Linden Avenue was dedicated January 1, 1918 with a celebration that included a parade of one thousand Masons! Additional land not acquired until 1920 was added. The building housed all of Alliance’s York Rite bodies (Council, Chapter, and Knights Templar), the blue lodge(s), Order of Eastern Star, Order of Amaranth, and Masonic youth groups). Alliance’s Masonic community thrived.

An organizational meeting May 17, 1925 and attended by forty-five Master Masons was held to form yet another blue lodge. Worshipful Brother A. Dillon Crist, then immediate Past Master of Conrad Lodge, was selected to be the new lodge’s Worshipful Master. Most Worshipful Brother Crist (33°) became Grand Master of Ohio in 1939.

The name selected for the new lodge was “J.E. McFadden”, after Right Worshipful Brother Jacob E. McFadden (33°, K.Y.C.H.). Dispensation was granted the new lodge July 23, 1925. Charter was granted October 22, 1925 at Columbus, Ohio to J. E. McFadden Lodge #697 F. & A. M. of Alliance, Ohio.

As has been the trend for the past few decades, membership has waned. In 1989 Alliance's blue lodges were consolidated. In 2006, the York Rite bodies merged with the Canton, Ohio York Rite. Also in 2006, the blue lodge room was reconsecrated for 150 years of Masonic brotherhood and service. Today, Conrad Lodge #271 F. & A.M. with two hundred seventy-one active members is located in the 21st Ohio Ma

sonic Didtrict. Meetings are held at 7:30 p.m. at the Masonic Temple the first and third Tuesday except during the July and August months.

III. Detailed History of Conrad Lodge With Exhibits

a. A Brief History of Alliance, Ohio
b. The Roots of Freemasonry in Alliance
c. Masonry Grows Here
d. Yet Another Lodge Forms
e. A Place To Meet
f. The Temple Building
g. The Cornerstone
h. A Grand Parade in Alliance
i. The Pipe Organ
j. The Grand Master's Class
k. Members Of Notice
l. Milestones
m. Thoughts To Live By
n. Appendix

♦ A Brief History of Alliance ♦
The smallest details are debated. The complete account of exactly when, where, and how the city’s inception took form is a topic that time and again has created lively conversation across many a kitchen or banquet table; one pursued even today.

There is a foundation of rock-solid truth however and all historians’ versions rely on some portion of that truth, deviating only when evidence or audience grows thin. A truly reliable source of the account of events, which bear witness to the beginnings of our city, is published as the ‘Introduction’ to Brother Lyle Crist’s (33) book titled simply “Alliance”, published in 1998 and reprinted in 2004.

“It began with Williamsport, Liberty, and Freedom. These three small communities eventually grew together and became incorporated as the town, Alliance, in 1854. In 1889, by mutual agreement, the Village of Mount Union was annexed into Alliance.” Brother Crist’s history explains how it was a railroad official’s suggestion the town be named “Alliance” with the occurrence here of the alliance of two prominent railroads. He noted also the population in 1850, at the end of the pre-railroad era, stood about two hundred persons.

The last census estimates a population of about twenty-three thousand people. Alliance’s population growth rate is considered mature. A change of more than a few percent in either direction is not expected. Today’s Alliance remains as vital however if less burgeoning as the small cross-railroads community of one hundred fifty years ago, and there have been Free and Accepted Masons here the entire time.

♦ The Roots of Freemasonry in Alliance ♦
Masons were living in Alliance and its vicinity during those early years, and through the efforts of those few a Symbolic Lodge was formed. Alliance’s Masonic brethren petitioned the Grand Lodge of Ohio during the summer months of 1855 for a dispensation and Charter with the express intent of forming a blue lodge.

B. R. Perdue, then Worshipful Master of the Brown Lodge #235 in Minerva, Ohio secured the petition. Dispensation was granted by the Grand Master of Ohio, William B. Dodds, on August 27, 1855. The name taken for the new lodge was the Alliance Lodge.

Two meetings of the Alliance Lodge were held while under dispensation: September 23rd and October 23rd. Both meetings were presided over by B. R. Perdue. Other officer positions were filled by the following: J. R. Conrad, Senior Warden; R. Baldwin, Junior Warden; D. G. Hester, Secretary; Alex Fishel, Treasurer; A. H. Fracker, Senior Deacon; Jesse Reeves, Junior Deacon; and George Bensel, Tyler. Mr. Thomas J. Nixon petitioned for membership at the first meeting. At the second meeting one month later, the degree of Entered Apprentice was conferred upon him.

The Grand Lodge that year met at Mansfield on October 25th in annual communication. The By-Laws and Records of the Alliance Lodge were presented with the recommendation they be approved. Later that day the Grand Lodge of Ohio granted a “Charter of Regular and Constitutional Lodge of Master Masons by the Name, Style, and Title of Alliance Lodge #271 F. & A.M.”

The first communication of the new lodge was a special meeting on November 14th, presided over by Past Master of the Wellsville Lodge #180 J. A. Riddle who was instituted proxy of the Grand Lodge to install officers. The officers appointed in the Charter by the Grand Master were: J. A. Riddle, W.M. Pro tem; J. R. Conrad, S.W.; R. Baldwin, J.W. Six days later the first stated communication was held with these officers in their stations:

 

J. R. Conrad, W.M.
B. W. Johnson, S.W.
R. Baldwin, J.W.
A. H. Fracker, S.D.
Jesse Reeves, J.D.
Jesse Reeves, Tyler Pro tem
D. G. Hester, Secretary
I. S. Orton, Treasurer

Two candidates were elected at that meeting to receive the degree of Entered Apprentice, and Bro. Thomas J. Nixon was elected to receive the degree of Fellow Craft. A special meeting was called December 4th to confer this degree on Bro. Nixon.

The first Master Mason degree conferred by the Alliance Lodge #271 was to Bro. Thomas J. Nixon at a stated meeting December 18th. Officers were elected during the regular business at that meeting. Those elected in 1855 were:

J. R. Conrad, W.M.
B. W. Johnson, S.W.
R. Baldwin, J.W.
T. J. Nixon, Treasurer
D. G. Hester, Secretary
A. H. Fracker, S.D.
Jesse Reeves, J.D.
George Bensel, Tyler.

♦ Masonry Grows Here ♦
The stability successful operation of the Alliance Lodge #271 provided helped efforts to form a second blue lodge develop. Beginning about the year 1873 several members of the Alliance Lodge met to organize the new lodge. During that year J. H. Sharer, prominent in the Alliance business community, served as Worshipful Master of Alliance Lodge #271.

J. R. Conrad and several Lodge #271 brothers developed a petition in similar fashion as was with the creation of the Alliance Lodge. The Grand Lodge of Ohio approved the dispensation on March 18, 1874. Grand Master of Ohio Asa H. Battin granted the dispensation to these brothers: J. R. Conrad, O. J. Heusted, W. H. Dressler, William Stallcup, J. W. Gillespie, W. A. Nixon, John Joseph, E. M. Chapman, J. C. Sutton, and P. H. Barr. Charter was granted the new lodge on October 20, 1875 - nineteen months after it had received its dispensation. The Conrad Lodge #494 was begun; named after J. R. Conrad.

Conrad Lodge met the first and third Monday of each month of the calendar year. On April 20, 1874 the new lodge received the first petitioners for degrees. They were: P. C. Petit, Charles Y. Kay, and J. B. Milner. While still under dispensation Conrad received from Homeworth, Ohio Masons a petition for acceptance. Homeworth too was applying for dispensation. The same petition was sent to Alliance Lodge #271, but it was Conrad who first responded.
Alliance, Ohio’s two blue lodges met and worked separately for a period of almost four years. On May 6, 1879 a change in direction was proposed. It was then that the idea of consolidating both lodges was proffered by Alliance Lodge. Members of Alliance Lodge passed a resolution stating it was their desire to unite with Conrad Lodge. A request that Conrad co-operate accompanied the resolution.

Once received at Conrad, little was done regarding the matter. Conrad Lodge #494 did not send a reply for four and one half years. A yea vote then of forty-two of sixty of the Conrad brothers agreed to the consolidation. Their answer was presented at a stated meeting of Alliance Lodge, November 6, 1883. Accompanying their signatures were conditions. Conrad Lodge required the Alliance Lodge meet four demands before participation would be granted. The conditions were:

That the name of the consolidated lodge be a name agreeable to both lodges, or one decided upon after agreement was reached by a majority vote.

That the lodge number shall be #271.

Previous to the consolidation by either lodge be honored in full by the consolidated lodge.

That the property and effects of each lodge become the property and effects of the consolidated lodge.

The Alliance Lodge deferred answering for just over two years. A meeting of select members from both lodges in committee then advanced the idea two lodges should continue as one. Alliance Lodge #271 sent A. B. Ewing, J. K. Allen, and J. H. Sharer – Junior Past Master. Conrad Lodge #494 sent A. B. Love, J. M. Stillwell, and Charles Chapman – Junior Past Master.

When the brothers concluded their meeting, the resolution was ready to be presented to the Alliance Lodge. The resolution promptly was signed by no less than fifty brothers of Alliance Lodge #271 at a stated meeting scheduled January 5, 1886.

The official date of the consolidation was set for April 16, 1886. This was to be a stated communication for Conrad and a special meeting for Alliance. Most Worshipful Grand Master S. Stacker Williams presided and, as it was recounted, he “took charge of the lodge when he made some very appropriate remarks upon consolidation of the two lodges after which he declared the Alliance Lodge #271 and Conrad Lodge #494 duly consolidated.” Membership that day stood at 155. From that day forward the name of the blue lodge has been Conrad Lodge #271 F. & A. M.

There is a bit of history that sparkles. Conrad Lodge #271 F. & A. M. conducted business at stated meetings and conferred degrees for a period of forty-three years without having been granted a Charter by the Grand Lodge of Ohio. The oversight was discovered and the matter was resolved to the satisfaction of both Conrad Lodge and the Grand Lodge at the Annual Communication held in Toledo October 17, 1929.

Apparently, the actions taken by Grand Master S. S. Williams in 1886 had not been entered into the proceedings of the Grand Lodge. A Charter was prepared in 1929 and was signed by the officers and brothers of the Conrad Lodge #271 and the Grand Lodge of Ohio. No protest ever was raised about any degree work performed or business conducted on behalf of Conrad Lodge during those forty-three years.

♦ Yet Another Lodge Forms ♦
The City of Alliance’s Masonic community again found there to be a need for a second blue lodge. Membership at consolidation in 1886 stood at 155, but interest in the Masonic life grew during the years and decades that ensued and by the 1920’s membership in Conrad Lodge #271 stood at around 800.

The blue lodge met at the Masonic Temple - a splendid hall built during the previous decade and dedicated entirely to the pursuit of the Masonic ideals and the practice of its rituals. The Temple most certainly was adequate to the task. More is to be written about this fine edifice.
With the Conrad Masons were many hundreds affiliated with other branches of the Masonic learning tree; each meeting at the Temple: the Alliance Chapter #83 Royal Arch Masons, Alliance Council #112 Royal and Select Masons, Alliance Commandery #67 Knights Templar, and the Alliance Chapter #296 Order of the Eastern Star.

Secretary of the Masonic Temple Company, Brother A. E. Melbourne, knew of perhaps two hundred brother Master Masons meeting there who were not affiliated with Conrad Lodge #271. Brother Melbourne made further inquiry of these sojourning Brothers and discovered many carried no interest in affiliating with the by now large Conrad Lodge, rather, many expressed a desire to form a new blue lodge.

Brother Melbourne, realizing Alliance’s industrial and commercial might supported continued population growth and noting how fertile was the plain for the Masonic lifestyle, called a meeting to discuss the idea. The meeting was held May 17, 1925 at 8:30 p.m. in the third floor lounge area of the Temple.

Minutes reveal there were forty-five Master Masons in attendance. Temporary officers were elected so that business could be conducted. A. C. Ball was elected temporary Chairman and E. M. Yarnell was elected temporary Secretary. All present expressed their support for a new lodge and each pledged further support for the cause. Much was accomplished in a few hours. A report was generated that was to be presented before the Past Masters Association of Conrad Lodge. Rental rates and other sundry topics also were addressed and the report was received and adopted. It so stipulated:

  • That they would approve a new lodge and lend their support to its organization.
  • That the petition would not be circulated among the membership of Conrad Lodge.
  • That regular evening meetings were to be held on the 2nd and 4th Fridays on the month.


That suitable arrangements be made to use the furniture and effects of the Conrad Lodge until such time when they were able to purchase those items.

A ballot was ordered to elect the three principal officers. Each was elected by a unanimous vote of those present. Brother Melbourne suggested Worshipful Brother A. Dillon Crist, then Lecturer for the 21st Masonic District of Ohio and immediate Past Master of Conrad Lodge for Worshipful Master. A motion and second were received from Brothers Allcorn and Berg. A. C. Ball was suggested for Senior Warden by Brother Ellsworth, and a second was received from Brother Schultz, and E. M. Yarnell was suggested for Junior Warden by Brother Banks, second by Brother Keith.

Brother Yarnell then requested that his name be removed from consideration and this was done, and Brother Ralph G. Harshman was presented for Junior Warden, who accepted. It was at that first meeting in fact Brother Harshman who suggested the name for the new lodge be “J.E. McFadden”, after one of the Alliance area’s most distinguished of Masonic persons: Right Worshipful Brother Jacob E. McFadden (33). This was approved, and the meeting adjourned.

It took some few months to assemble all of the paperwork necessary to establish the new lodge and its membership as being prepared for dispensation. During the fourth meeting of J.E. McFadden Lodge, June 10th, Brothers Geo. Powley and Clyde M. Baker were appointed by Worshipful Brother Crist to serve as Secretary and Treasurer respectively until such time as dispensation was served and their positions would be made official. A membership committee was created whose function was to circulate the petition and assist the brethren in obtaining their dimits. A deadline of July 7th was set for presenting the data to Conrad Lodge.


The approval from Conrad came at their regular meeting July 21st. The tally was: Yes 23 votes, No 13 votes. That evening at 9:45 p.m. Worshipful Brother Crist left Alliance with the petition and necessary forms via train for Cincinnati. Harry S. Johnson, Grand Secretary, granted dispensation the morning of July 22nd, however, the dispensation needed Grand Master James B. Ruhl’s signature.

The Grand Master being presently in Cleveland, Worshipful Brother Crist boarded a train and arrived in Cleveland during the evening of the 22nd. The next day dispensation was granted. J.E. McFadden Lodge held their first regular meeting under dispensation July 24, 1925.

 

The dispensation continued “in full force until the next Annual Communication of our Grand Lodge to be holden at the City of Columbus, Ohio on the twenty-first day of October A.L. 5925 A.D. 1925, unless sooner revoked by competent authority, and I hereby appoint:

  • Worshipful Brother Dillon Crist to be the first Worshipful Master
  • Brother Alf. C. Ball to be the first Senior Warden
  • Brother Ralph G. Harshman to be the first Junior Warden


Of the said New Lodge; and it shall be their duty and they are hereby required to return this Dispensation, with all the proceedings had under the authority of the same, together with an attested copy of their By-Laws, to our Grand Lodge aforesaid, at the expiration of the time herein specified for examination and such other action in the premises as shall be deemed wise and proper. Given under my hand and Private Seal at Cleveland, Ohio this 23rd day of July A.L. 5925 A.D. 1925.” Signed by James B. Ruhl, Grand Master, and Harry S. Johnson, Grand Secretary.

The ‘Annual Return for 1924 – 25 submitted August 9th while Under Dispensation’ listed total membership of seventy Master Masons. Those charter members had dimitted from a home lodge to join McFadden Lodge. In holding to one of the conditions agreed upon during the organization meeting, while excepting the Worshipful Master, there were no dimits received from Conrad #271. Charter was granted to J. E. McFadden Lodge #697 of Alliance, Ohio on October 22, 1925. The Alliance Review that date announced the lodge’s bid in a small article. Alliance, Ohio once again had two blue lodges. Membership at both lodges one year later in 1926 stood at: Conrad #271 – 794, and McFadden #697 – 116.

♦ A Place To Meet ♦
There is no mention in the official record of where the Masonic lodge was located during that first decade or so, and only references made in prior histories give any indication as to a location. Through careful reconstruction of those few facts, employing the record of documents as a guide, it can be determined with a high amount of certainty just where in Alliance the Lodges did meet.

The Alliance Lodge #271 held many early meetings in a second floor room of a building owned by someone referred to as “A. Miller.” An examination of Stark County courthouse records does reveal there was an Andrew Miller who purchased a property on Main Street during the period in question. There is reference to other properties throughout Stark County purchased during those years by an “A.Miller” but only one of those was located on Main Street in Alliance, Ohio.

Andrew Miller purchased Lot 8 in the Jennings and Brooks Allotment. The deed was signed May 6th and December 8th in the year 1856 by Simeon Jennings and Eliza Jennings respectively, and was received for record in Canton, Ohio on April 27, 1857.
Whether Alliance Lodge #271 began to meet at that place after Miller took title or before is unknown. The Jennings and Brooks Allotment was platted east of Liberty Avenue. Its boundaries ran east along the north side of Fulton Street between East Main Street and the easternmost railroad tracks - those owned by the Pittsburgh, Fort Wayne & Chicago Railroad, and crossed over the lines owned by the Cleveland and Pittsburgh Railroad - later the Pennsylvania Railroad. Lot No. 8 is located at the southeast corner of East Main Street and Liberty Avenue.

Brother Crist’s account assists here as he has explained the site was the location of ‘The Stark Hotel’ in the 1880’s. Alliance Lodge had moved on by then however. As a point of reference the location serves today as one corner of the viaduct property.
Conrad Lodge #271 did meet in several locations during the last decades of the nineteenth century up to the mid – nineteen tens. Citing previous histories, the lodge was located on the third floor of the Kay Building. Brother Crist’s account does indicate the Kay Building was located west of the Newsome Tower, the former City Savings Bank building, on the south side of East Main Street near the City Square. The site serves today as a parking lot for the Tower residents.

A reason for the move is not provided in the record. On June 1, 1895 the Lodge moved across the square to its new residence on the third floor of the Stone Block. The Stone Block is located on the north side of East Main Street in the 500 block and presently houses law offices and City offices. Worshipful Brother Wells Oyster recounts that a ‘Square and Compass’ was painted on the inside of the transom glass above the door leading into the building.
While maintaining a lodgeroom at the Stone building, additional clubrooms were secured on the second floor of the Coates Block. The Coates Block was located on the northwest corner of East Main Street and Linden Avenue. The building long ago was razed and replaced by the building that for many years were the McCrory’s and G.C. Murphy stores. Clubrooms were not maintained long at the Coates location and at some point they were relocated to the second floor of the Hampton Building on the south side of the 200 block of East Main Street, presently a municipal parking lot.

The idea of owning a building began to take form late in 1912. Leases for both lodge and clubrooms were about to expire. Space was secured for both in rooms located on the third floor of the Wick Block: a building formerly located on the southeast corner of East Main Street and Arch Avenue. At one time the Wick Block housed The Alliance Business College and Penrod’s Men’s Wear. On January 7, 1913 a motion was passed that a committee be appointed who would meet in conjunction with Alliance Chapter #83 Royal Arch Masons to ferret-out the details and determine the feasibility of building a free-standing temple.

♦ The Temple Building 
Our Masonic Temple is located at 144 South Linden Avenue on the northeast corner of South Linden Avenue and East Columbia Street. An excellent history exists in brief form that was included in the “Program of Dedication of Masonic Temple Alliance, Ohio”. It herein is reproduced.

“Between the time the sentiment for a Masonic Temple in Alliance crystallized into definite action and the dedication today of the completed temple, fewer than four years elapsed.
For the purpose of this souvenir program, it is sufficient to epitomize the main events connecting the conception of the temple and its successful consummation which is being accomplished today.
These facts, tersely told, are:

  • April 22, 1914 – First shareholders meeting; board of trustees elected and purchase of the Weybrecht property at Linden Avenue and Columbia Street authorized.
  • April 24, 1914 – Trustees organized and elected officers.
  • March 16, 1915 – Stockholders adopt temple plans.
  • July 9, 1915 – Stockholders authorize trustees to award contract to Ernest Kroemer, of Dayton.
  • July 16, 1915 – Trustees elect Dr. C. S. Hoover, H.D. Tolerton, Guy E. Allot, L.D. Scranton and Oatis Wilcox as building committee.
  • August 9, 1915 – Excavation commenced.
  • August 31, 1915 – First brick laid.
  • October 9, 1915 – Cornerstone laid by Acting Grand Master H.M. Haglebarger, of Akron, who is today dedicating temple as actual Grand Master of Ohio.
  • August 7, 1916 – Contractor W.F. Scott, Alliance, takes up work – succeeding Contractor Kroemer who defaulted in his contract.
  • December 2, 1917 – Temple open for inspection of Masons and their families
  • December 4, 1917 – First stated communication of Blue Lodge held in new temple.
  • December 5, 1917 – Open house to other fraternal organizations and to the general public.
  • December 6, 1917 – First Masonic Ball in the new temple.
  • December 7, 1917 – First stated meeting Eastern Star.
  • January 1, 1918 – Temple formally dedicated.

In the erection of the temple which is today dedicated to Masons throughout the world in general and to the Masonic bodies of Alliance in particular, the trustees have had the benefit of whole-hearted co-operation and sympathetic support of not only the members of the Blue Lodge, but also of the Chapter Council, Commandery and the Eastern Star lodges. The complete temple, as it stands today, is mute, but impressive evidence of the loyalty and the labor of the members of these various Masonic bodies.

In acknowledging the loyal support and the wise counsel of the members of the craft, the trustees are not unmindful of the fidelity, the diligence and the studious desire to please which have characterized the labor of the workers who have builded the temple. Of them it may be truly said, as a slight measure of appreciation:
‘They have builded better than they know.’”

The Investigation Committee formed in 1913 consisted of Brothers M. S. Milbourne, George Reeves, George Judd, T. D. Russell, and D. B. Cassaday. The motion presented to Conrad Lodge passed that a subscription of no less than $15,000.00 was necessary before work could proceed. Brothers F. V. Cassaday, E. G. Lovett, Oatis Wilcox, D. H. Hoobler, and G. C. Baxley assisted the Investigation Committee in this endeavor.

While work began on schedule and progress toward completion proceeded at a rapid pace initially, problems with solvency of the original contractor did create delays lasting ten months. Ultimately through the bonding company a local contractor, W. F. Scott, was chosen to continue the construction.

The Masonic Temple Company was formed whose function was to manage the funds involved with construction, to supervise the progress made and provide quality control, to properly furnish and equip the facility once completed, and to see to the maintenance. Dr. Charles S. Hoover of the Transue and Williams Company accepted the presidency. The Temple Company sold seven hundred shares at a share price of one hundred dollars. Approximately six hundred fifty Masons purchased shares. The balance was secured with a comparatively small mortgage.

In 1914 these men served with President Hoover as officers: William Hart, Vice-President; J. Oatis Wilcox, Secretary, and William A. Thompson, Treasurer. Seventeen Trustees were appointed along with these Ex-Officio members, each representing one branch of the constabulary:

  • F. R. Donaldson, W.M. Conrad Lodge F. & A.M., No. 271
  • C. T. Morgan, H.P. Alliance Chapter, No. 83 R.A.M.
  • H. B. Gardner, T.I.M. Alliance Council, No. 112 R. & S.M.
  • J. E. McFadden, E.C. Alliance Commandery, K.T.

As platted the Sublots were known as Lots 18, 17, and 16 respectfully of the Teeters and Lamborn Allotment. City Lots 717, 718, and 719 less a parcel of 650 square feet from City Lot 719 were selected as the location of the new building. The lots were owned by the Weybrecht estate: B. F. and Elizabeth Weybrecht, Jennie and John H. Vitzthum, Mary V. and Leroy Lamborn, Annie and Fremont Livingston, and Charles C. and Emilie Weybrecht. The portion of Lot 719 not included in the sale, a remnant still in the Teeters’ name later was purchased from Dr. Charles S. Hoover.

The deed to the ‘Weybrecht property’ was signed between March 1, 1915 and March 23, 1916 and received for record March 24, 1916. The ‘Hoover parcel’ deed was signed June 13, 1918 and received for record April 19, 1920. Cost for the three city lots was seventeen thousand dollars ($17,000.00).

The architectural firm Thayer and Thayer of Newcastle, Pennsylvania was employed. The original contract for construction was let for $44,109.00. Actual cost of building the Temple was $74,732.55. Furnishings and fixtures totaling $16,267.45 added to the land and building cost brought the total outlay to $108,000.00.

The Temple was built during the World War I, and construction was subject to the shortages of building stock and inflations evident during the Crisis however, through persistence and clarity of objective a stunning result was achieved. The Federal Reserve Board’s index of yearly inflation rates provides an interesting comparison between 1918 and 2008. Temple outlay in 2008 dollars would be $1,542,039.74, all other factors held equal.

♦ The Cornerstone ♦
“Masons Lay Temple Cornerstone; Plumed Knights Escort Craftsmen.” The reporter’s name is absent whose words followed the feature article headline of the Saturday, October 9, 1915 “Alliance Review and Leader.” The article’s deckline told of the main events: “Ancient Ceremony is Used at Impressive Event – Dr. D. C. Grover Delivers an Eloquent Oration – Corn, Wine and Oil Poured Over Stone, in Keeping With Traditional Custom,” and the cutline complete with artist rendition of the completed temple told readers of where the Temple would be located. Acting Grand Master H. M. Haglebarger of Akron received the gavel from Worshipful Master C. T. Morgan and presided over the Ceremony held October 9, 1915.

Events that day included a communication of the Grand Lodge followed by a parade. The parade began at the Stone Block Masonic lodge room and marched west to Union Avenue where “the procession counter-marched to Linden and south on Linden to the temple site.” Templar Knights from both Canton and Salem escorted the Masons, and a military band accompanied.

Bro. W. L. Hart presented the Gold Trowel to the Most Worshipful Grand Master with these words. “In behalf of Conrad Lodge No. 271, Free and Accepted Masons, I present to you for this purpose a trowel whose symbolism and importance in Masonry is familiar to all Masons …”
Grand Orator Dr. D. C. Grover told the crowd that “the Alliance Masonic temple which shall rise above this cornerstone will be beautiful in architectural design, massive and strong, and marked by symmetry and order.” Truer words never were spoken. Grand Treasurer J. E. McFadden of Alliance was presented a list of the contents of the ‘Masonic Temple Building Corner Stone Box.’ The box made of copper holds these items:

  1. A sealed list of the members of Committee on Arrangements.
  2. A sealed list of the names of the Trustees of Alliance Masonic Temple Company.
  3. An imprint of the Seals of Conrad Lodge No. 271, Alliance Chapter No. 83, The Alliance Masonic Club Company, and The Alliance Masonic Temple Company.
  4. A copy of an Oxford Pictorial Bible.
  5. Calendar of Conrad Lodge and all Masonic Orders corrected to date.
  6. Square and Compasses.
  7. Copy of By-Laws of Conrad Lodge No. 271.
  8. Official Program of Corner Stone laying.
  9. The American Flag.
  10. A box of Jewels consisting of Crown and Cross, Keystone, Chapter Pennies, and Jewish half-shekel all engraved.
  11. An official copy of the Orations.
  12. A copy of The Alliance Review and Leader.

On May 13, 2006 Most Worshipful Brother James M. Williamson, Grand Master of the State of Ohio accompanied by the Grand Officers led a Reconsecration Ceremony at the Temple. Assisted by Conrad officers, Most Worshipful Williamson presided over the ceremonial pouring of the wine, corn, and oil, performed in accordance with the ancient directives. The Saturday morning event was scheduled to recognize one hundred fifty years of Freemasonry here in Alliance.

♦ A Grand Parade in Alliance ♦
The Temple Dedication was performed New Year’s Day 1918. A fine ‘Programme’ was arranged for Masons and their Ladies which lasted from eleven thirty in the morning, when Dinner was served, through to the Grand Ball featuring the King Vanderkar Orchestra that began at eight that evening. The Dedication exercises followed the Grand Parade at three in the afternoon. At seven sharp came the conferring of Master Mason Degrees in the new Blue Lodge Room.

Movies at the spacious Columbia Theatre to the immediate east of the Temple were arranged during the day as entertainment for those Ladies and children in attendance. It is reported the film shown was: “The Little Princess” with Mary Pickford. Truly a splendid program of events that was to signal a new beginning for Alliance and the Masonic community.
As significant and important the Dedication and Degree work were the signature event of the entire program must have been The Grand Parade. The Alliance Review recounted the event in their Wednesday, January 2, 1918 paper. As reported in the Review, one thousand Masons participated in The Grand Parade.

The procession formed at the Temple, marched north on South Linden Avenue to East Main Street where the column turned east toward Liberty Avenue. At Liberty, the lines counter-marched and moved back up East Main Street. Continuing up East Main Street the column of one thousand marched as far as the intersection at Lincoln Avenue. Here the line again counter-marched back down East Main Street to South Linden Avenue where they turned and ended back at the Temple. It was noted that Masonic Bands played during the return trip from Lincoln Avenue to the Temple.

Grand Orator Dr. S. B. Salmon gave the address and Grand Master of Ohio Right Worshipful Brother H. M. Haglebarger added an encouraging speech. The Dedication ceremony represents the last of three visits made by Grand Master Haglebarger to Alliance. His first being the cornerstone ceremony for the Federal Post Office Building, the second was to preside at the Temple cornerstone ceremony, and the third was the Dedication.

♦ The Pipe Organ ♦
The history is not complete without mention of a fabulous addition made to the Temple that has returned to those countless attendees the initial investment many times over. A contract was signed with the Hillgreen, Lane & Company to build a pipe organ to be located in the empty loft. The organ manufacturer held worldwide acclaim and was locally owned and managed.

Signed August 10, 1928 by R. H. Hillgreen, party of the first part and The Alliance Masonic Club by F. R. Donaldson, President and by Oatis Wilcox, Chairman of the Organ Committee, parties of the second part, the contract stipulated a payment of three thousand dollars.
Five hundred dollars was due upon completion with two annual installments of eight hundred dollars due thereafter and a third final payment of nine hundred dollars. The “2-Manual Organ” sports great, swell, and pedal organs, a cabinet and bench of oak, ebony and ivory keys, and was designed with air-driven ‘player’ organ capability. A dynamo and motor for driving the pipe organ are situated in the fourth floor attic.

Currently non-functional, those who do remember its glorious sound filling the Lodge Room believe the organ can and should be repaired. To supplement the pipe organ, a piano and an electric organ are present in the expanded loft.

♦ The Grand Master’s Class ♦
The symbolic Masonic Degrees: Entered Apprentice, Fellowcraft, and Master Mason, without fail, are awarded in that order. The history, symbolism, and allegorical content each degree contains provide the foundation for the subsequent degrees. Applicants to the lodge have two methods of obtaining degrees, and it is important to mention these are not exclusive. Traditional Masonic practice requires a candidate to receive each degree in succession at separate ceremonies. Upon completion of the degree work, a successful return is required from the candidate. Each successful candidate’s acceptance is voted on. Both candidate and lodge determine the term between the receipt of Entered Apprentice and completion of Master Mason.

Masons in the State of Ohio have been granted a second method of obtaining the three degrees in the format of a one-day class. The class is not an annual event but may be; subject to the decree by the Grand Master. A new candidate, or a brother who has completed only some of his degree work, may join the one-day class accompanied by a Master Mason so designated his Mentor. The one-day class format follows the content of each degree with the result a candidate can obtain his Entered Apprentice, Fellowcraft, and Master Mason degrees on the same day. Taking nothing away from the substance of the individual ceremonies, the one-day class has permitted many applicants whose personal schedules had made it impossible to do so otherwise to become brothers, while permitting those dues-paying brothers who had completed one or two degrees to complete their degree work.

♦ Members of Notice ♦
Historical:

  • W. Bro. Joseph R. Conrad, PM (1st WM at Alliance #271 and Conrad #494 lodges)
  • R. W. Bro. Jacob E. McFadden, PM, 33, EC (1st EC Alliance Commandry K.T.), PGT
  • Bro. Thomas J. Nixon, MM (first Master Mason received at Alliance Lodge)
  • W. Bro. J.H. Sharer, PM
  • Bro. Dr. Charles H. Hoover, MM (1st President of the Temple Company)
  • Bro. William L. Hart, MM (1st Vice President of the Masonic Temple Company, Justice of the Supreme Court of Ohio)
  • Bro. A.E. Melbourne, MM (Secretary of the Masonic Temple Company)
  • M. W. Bro. A. Dillon Crist, PM, 33, PGM, PGT, PDGL, PIM (Council #112, R.&S.M.)
  • W. Bro. J. Glenn McLean, PM, PEC (Commandery #67, K.T.), PIM, (Council #112, R.& S.M.), PHP (Chapter #83, R.A.M.)

Contemporary:
Bro. Lyle M. Crist, 33
W. Bro. Paul W. Chapple, PM, KYCH
W. Bro. Frank A. Bush, PM, KYCH, PDDC (8th Dist. K.T.), PDDGP (18th Cap. Dist. R.A.M.)
W. Bro. Albert H. O’Mealy, PM, 33
R. W. Bro. Gordon D. Rinehart, PM, 33, PDDGM
R. W. Bro. Michael E. Burnett, PM, 33, PDDGM, KYCH
W. Bro. Herbert L. Zigler, PM, KYCH
W. Bro. Michael R. Zigler, PM, KYCH, DDGHP (18th Cap. Dist. R.A.M.)
W. Bro. Wells Oyster, PM, Secretary
Br. David C. Bauer, Honorary Member
Br. A. Dillon Crist, Honorary Member
Br. Eugene Edgerley, Honorary Member
Br. Samuel Gailey, Honorary Member
Br. Edward M. Jenkins, Honorary Member
M. W. Br. James F. Easterling, Jr., 33, Honorary Member

♦ Milestones ♦
1854 – Three small communities incorporated as the town, Alliance.
1855 – The first Communications (Meetings) of the newly chartered Alliance Lodge #271 F. &
A.M. were a Special on November 14th and a Stated on November 20th.
1855 – The first Master Mason degree granted in Alliance, Ohio was conferred upon Bro.
Thomas J. Nixon on December 18th.
1857 – Grand Lodge rules pertaining to Dispensation were changed in such a way that had
Alliance Lodge #271 organized under the new rules it would not have qualified. The
rule change made it necessary for a lodge to be organized by no fewer than eight
Master Masons with one being a Past Master, and with the recommendation of all
Lodges within the area affected; one of whom vouching for the moral character of the
petitioners. Most Worshipful Brother William B. Dodds granted dispensation Monday,
August 27, 1855 to a lodge of seven petitioners.
1867 – The By-laws as written were altered with regard to the day and time of the Stated
Communication. Meetings had taken place on the Tuesday before the full moon with
the hour of meeting set for 7:30 P.M. for the period March 25th to September 25th, and
at 6:30 P.M. for the period September 25th to March 25th. The rationale given for the
earlier hours was to maximize the amount of full moon light available travelers to and
from lodge meetings. They now were to take place on the first and third Tuesday of
each month.
1871 – Petition received July 4 by Alliance Lodge from brethren from Louisville, Ohio
requesting permission to form a new lodge. The motion was summarily approved.
1874 – First petitions for membership received by Conrad Lodge while under dispensation.
Petition received by Alliance Lodge, and Conrad Lodge while under dispensation from
brethren in Homeworth, Ohio requesting permission to form a new lodge. The motion
was first approved before Conrad Lodge.
1875 – The second blue lodge to begin in Alliance, Conrad Lodge #494 F. & A. M. was granted
its Charter October 20th by the Grand Lodge of Ohio.
1877 – The Masonic Friends of Pittsburgh, Pa. bestowed upon Alliance Lodge #271 a
generous token of friendship: a Master’s gavel made from ivory with an inscribed silver
band attached complete with ebony wood handle. The gift demonstrated the close
fraternal bond created when traveling brothers meet under Square and Compass.
Significant gavels received by Conrad Lodge are displayed throughout the Temple.
1886 – Alliance Lodge #271 and Conrad Lodge #494 were consolidated to form Conrad
Lodge #271 F. & A. M. with the official date of the consolidation April 16th.
1889 – The Village of Mount Union annexed into the City of Alliance.
1900 – Population of Alliance at 8,974.
1909 – The Alliance Masonic Club Company’s Articles of Incorporation were signed April 22nd.
Citing initial capital stock totaling $2,000.00, the Club’s charter officers were: S. L.
Sturgeon, Jas. A. Ratler, Franzo D. Millen, Wm. Stallcup, and Edwin C. Diehl. The
document is displayed in the Masonic poolroom located in the Temple basement.
1915 – The Cornerstone was laid for the new Temple building. The Ceremony was presided
over by the Officers of the Grand Lodge of Ohio. A parade through downtown Alliance
preceded the official ceremony. Earlier that year Conrad Masons participated in the
dedication ceremony of the cornerstone laid at the Federal Post Office building located
one block west of the Temple.
1917 – The first meeting in the new Temple was a special meeting on the afternoon of
December 4th for the conferring of both Entered Apprentice and Fellowcraft degrees.
The evening of the same day a stated meeting took place and the Master Mason
degree was conferred.
1918 – New Years Day. A Grand Parade attended by one thousand Masons was conducted
throughout the downtown of Alliance. Temple building Dedicated.
1918 – Names of members of Conrad Lodge #271 F&AM that were in World's War:
Abegglin R.F., Abegglin L.L., Anderson H.E., Appleton P.O., Barnard B.C., Boyce T.W.,
Campbell D.A., Coleman F.E., Colvin R.E., Davis A.T., Day C.R., Frederick B.C.,
Graham R.C., Harsh R.S., Hilgreen R. L., Hoover C.S., Hopkins Mack, Johnson E.M.,
Jones J.H., Kayler S.E., Kiddey C.C., Levan H.M., May H.B., McFarland H.R.,
McPherson M.T., Owen E.F., Powell Stanley, Richeson C.B., Roberts Samuel,
Rone K.E., Roller L.H., Ruth R.W., Sooth Walter W., Senn H.L., Shimp Samuel,
Slaybaugh R.E., Stoll H.W., Venables H.E., Wallace R.H., Weybrecht C.C.,
Weybrecht E.C. (died in service), Williams Harry, Wingert L.J., Wise H.E., Wood Don.

1918 – 1920 – The newly opened Temple saw much activity. On one such occasion the
Entered Apprentice degree was conferred upon thirty-two candidates. Another
occasion saw fourteen Master Mason degrees conferred.
1920 – Population of Alliance at 21,603.
1925 – The Alliance Masonic Benefit Association was organized on January 29th. The
Benefit Association continues to provide financial relief to widows and families of
deceased Master Masons who had belonged to the Association. Initially, affiliation was
limited to those from counties contiguous to Stark, but the By-Laws of the Association
have been altered since to permit any Master Mason in good standing to join. Recently,
the Constitution and By-Laws were amended to permit the members of Eastern Star to
join the Association. The Association was reorganized as a 501 (c)(3) organization.
1925 – A third-ever Alliance blue lodge was granted its Charter. J. E. McFadden Lodge #697 F.
& A. M. received its Charter October 22nd.
1928 – Hillgreen, Lane & Co. pipe organ installed in the organ loft.
1929 – A Charter finally was granted the Conrad Lodge #271 by the Grand Lodge of Ohio.
1929 – Brother Dillon Crist of Alliance, being duly appointed by the Grand Master of Ohio, to act
as the Most Worshipful Grand Master, opened a Grand Lodge for the purpose of
carrying out the corner stone laying ceremonies. The members then marched to the
New Temple where the proper ceremonies were held. Brother Crist acted as Orator
and gave a fine talk. The members returned to the Lodge and the Grand Lodge was
closed in due form. (copied with permission from the History of the Meridian Sun #69
Lodge F.&A.M., Richfield Twp., Oh.)
1932 – For many years the Masonic Temple served as home base for a group of Brothers
joined in fellowship and song. The Alliance Masonic Chorus toured throughout the N.E.
Ohio region. Their performances were not restricted to Masonic activity; the demand
was such to hear them sing. Members that year included Harry Schaffer, Thomas
Lewis, Floyd Belty, Glenn Allen, (-) Tussing, Ted Read, William McKay, Clarence
Haines, Mark Brown, Clare Beatty, Norbert Cassidy, Frank Fisher, Van Ruffner, Wilbur
Miller, Walter Clapsaddle, Lorin Del Roath, and William Davies, Director. The Chorus
featured Wm. McKay, Characteristic Scotch Singer, a Marimba Band and Brass
Ensemble. Bro. W. Lehman served as soloist and accompanied the Choir on
accordion.
1933 – The Temple was used for many purposes. Official Masonic ceremonies and
entertainment sponsored by one or more of the many Masonic bodies, of course. But,
entertainment of a more personal nature also took place at the Temple. There was for
many years an active Alliance Contract Bridge Club Company made up of members of
lodges that met at The Masonic Temple. Little else is known about this club except that
during the period in time investigated these brothers were members: E.E. Smith, Roy
Roath, John Mossop, Russell Ruff, Elson Meeks, Milton Geiger, Everett Winder, and
Frank Curtis. An inventory of game items does reveal that, in addition to Bridge,
Cribbage was a very popular pastime. The steadfast and well-maintained pocket and
carom billiard tables became mainstays. It was encouraged the membership should
frequent the building for fellowship as well as for official business.
1940 – Conrad Lodge held a Special M.M. Communication for the purpose of Rededication;
this at the request of the Most Worshipful Grand Master. The meeting was September
30. Grand Chaplain of Ohio, Right Worshipful Brother Charles B. Ketcham was
received and subsequently introduced as the speaker. His topic was timely given the
world situation and R.W. Bro. Ketcham expressed his belief it would be many years
before stability once again would be achieved. W.M. Baldwin then called all officers to
kneel at the alter forming a square, and all present repeated the M.M. Obligation. A
circle of friendship was formed and R.W. Ketcham gave the Rededication Obligation.
Following the ceremony, the Alliance Masonic Chorus accompanied by pianist Bro. Ray
Abbeglen ‘rendered several splendid numbers.’
1941 – A special communication of the Conrad Lodge on September 6 was held at the George
Washington National Masonic Hall in Alexandria, Virginia. Present and participating
were several National officers.
1943 – 1944 – Financial issues led to the membership of Conrad and McFadden lodges to
consider an increase in yearly lodge dues. The proposal was for a $3.00 per
member per year increase to $10.00 annual dues. Resolved April 18, 1944, the
increase was for the express purpose of purchasing at stated par value of
$100.00, additional shares in the Alliance Masonic Temple Company.
1950 – Population of Alliance at 26,161.
1954 – As had taken place during the previous decade, members of Conrad Lodge made a
trip to Alexandria, Virginia and the George Washington National Masonic Hall. A
Special Dispensation was approved for the communication held June 19. Brothers
traveled there by plane and automobile, with the option of comfortable, safe rail
transport available via a Pullman reserved from the Pennsylvania Railroad.
1955 – The 100th anniversary of Conrad Lodge #271 and its root elder lodges was observed
throughout the year. The Annual Inspection was in the Fellowcraft degree held February
15th. A Father and Son Banquet was held May 5th. On May 17th, a Past Masters Night
was held with twenty of the twenty-three Past Masters living in Alliance attending and at
the meeting each was presented a special Past Master’s apron. On the calendar
anniversary September 23rd a Banquet for all Masons and their ladies was given, and
Judge W. L. Hart of the Supreme Court of Ohio and Dr. Carl C. Bracy, President of
Mount Union College were the keynote speakers. Major events during the year
culminated at a Special Communication October 26th with a table lodge.
1955 – On October 30 McFadden Lodge #697 accompanied by Officers of the Grand Lodge of
Ohio enacted a Cornerstone laying for the new Lexington Centralized School building.
1956 – In open lodge March 6, R.L. Kniveton explained the need for continuance of the $3.00
dues increase that had been approved June 20, 1944. Improvements planned to the
front porch, which included an elevator that extended from the basement to the third
floor, would require an expenditure of $45,000.00. As proposed the funds would be
raised by sale of a 3% bond to be issued by The Alliance Masonic Temple Company.
The Resolution first read that evening included an agreement by officers of The Temple
Company that all funds collected heretofore derived from the $3.00 increase would be
deposited into the Alliance Masonic Temple Company Stock Retirement Fund, and
thereby were earmarked for retirement of debt.
1956 – During the first half of the year, both lodges discussed and subsequently approved the
organization of a chapter of DeMolay. At Conrad’s communication November 24,
Brothers Ellis Karns, Charles A. Noble, and Al Wanderslaben instituted that the new
name would be Dillon Crist Chapter of DeMolay.
1970 – Population of Alliance at 26,547. In addition to the two blue lodges and Masonic bodies
mentioned, the Temple was home for the Order of the Amaranth, DeMolay, Rainbow
Girls, and for a time, Alliance’s Prince Hall Lodge: Mt. Olive Lodge #66.
1975 – The 50th anniversary of J. E. McFadden #697 was observed. Worshipful Master Clyde
Whitcomb presided at the meeting held June 21st. Grand Master of Ohio Robert A.
Sager spoke. Forty-six McFadden brothers and thirty-four visitors representing sixteen
lodges attended.
1977 – First outdoor conferring of the Master Mason degree on July 4th at the Square and
Compass Recreation Center; an outdoor recreational facility owned for many years by
the Masonic Temple Company. The Center since has been sold.
1986 – Alliance’s blue lodges: Conrad #271 and J.E. McFadden #697 were awarded Grand
Parade Runner-Up honors and the McKinley Memorial Award in the float division. A
plaque was awarded for their combined entry in the Carnation City Festival Grand
Parade.
1989 – Alliance’s blue lodges were consolidated. On June 15th the members of the J. E.
McFadden Lodge #697 were accepted into Conrad Lodge #271.
1994 – Continuing the tradition of a men’s choir, The Alliance Masonic Chorus presented
several patriotic songs as part of Memorial Day ceremonies held at the Alliance City
Cemetery. Each year a parade is held prior to the ceremony in honor of those who’ve
paid the ultimate price in defending our nation. Members of this era’s Chorus included
Dale Allison, Carl Busch, Albert O’Mealy, Frank Daley, Myron Pearson, Wells Oyster,
Dan Irmie, Bob Ringler, Harry McCaskey, Gordon Rinehart, Harry Miller, and Ray Music.
2000 – Population of Alliance at 23,253.
2001 – Conrad Lodge #271 F. & A.M. became the owner of The Masonic Temple building. The
Masonic Temple Company subsequently was dissolved.
2006 – Temple building reconsecrated with Ceremony led by the Officers of the Grand Lodge
of Ohio. The 150th anniversary celebration included the pouring of corn, wine and oil.
Grand Master Most Worshipful James M. Williamson, Grand Lodge and Conrad
officers participated in the Saturday morning ceremony. An excellent account of the
happenings is published in the Alliance Review May 13, 2006, in which W.B. Wells
Oyster, Secretary invoked one of the most basic of Masonic beliefs: “To be a member,
you must believe in God. We begin meetings with prayer.”
2008 – Grand Lodge Grand Parade held in Columbus, Ohio. Several brothers traveled to
Columbus, Ohio and participated in the parade and ceremony that followed. The event
commemorated 200 years of Masonry in Ohio. The event was capstoned by the
spreading of corn, wine, and oil over the reconstructed cornerstone. The
Reconsecration Ceremony held at the base of the President Wm. McKinley statue on
the Ohio Statehouse grounds was presided over by Grand Masters of both the Ohio
and Prince Hall Masonry bodies.
2010 – Population of Alliance at 22,322.
2010 – The Temple roofs were replaced. The original slate roof over the main building was
replaced, and the composition roof over the portico was recovered. Sixty-three brothers
contributed funds toward the project.
2012 – The Alliance Preservation Commission awarded the Alliance Masonic Temple historic
status. A bronze plaque was given to be attached to the exterior of the building. The
Temple was opened in 1917, dedicated in 1918, and has served continuously since as
the home for Alliance, Ohio's Masonic community.
2013 – The 21st Masonic District comprised of blue lodges located in Stark, Summit, and
Tuscarawus counties held special favor this Masonic year as the Grand Master of Ohio
haled from one of its lodges. Most Worshipful Brother James F. Easterling, Jr. of
National Lodge No. 568, Barberton began his year at the helm of Ohio Masonry by
revealing his motto: 'Freemasonry - Together We Can ...'

Throughout the year it was the Grand Master's personal goal to be in attendance on
inspection night at each of the lodges of the 21st District. Careful scheduling of
meetings had the effect of extending the inspection season well into the month of
June, but made it possible for each blue lodge to have present at their inspection the
Most Worshipful Brother Easterling.

No stranger to Conrad Lodge and to the Temple (M.W.B. Easterling was present at the
Reconsecration Ceremony in 2006) the Temple received warm compliments as one of
his most personal favorites. On inspection night Conrad opened its balcony to
travelling brothers in return!

The Grand Master presided over several cornerstone settings and reconsecrations
during his year, and over the 4th of July weekend was present to rededicate a symbolic
cornerstone at the Perry Monument at Put-In-Bay. Several Conrad brothers travelled
there and participated in a Grand Parade. His Pay It Forward and Travelling Man
programs spurred new interest among the rank and file, and saw many brothers
travelling to lodges to watch their inspections.

♦ Thoughts To Live By ♦

"I See You’ve Traveled Some"
reprinted from The Trestleboard

Wherever you may chance to be –
Wherever you may roam,
Far away in foreign lands
Or just at Home, Sweet, Home;
It always gives you pleasure,
It makes your heart strings hum
Just to hear the words of cheer –
“I see you’ve traveled some.”

When you get the brother’s greeting,
As he takes you by the hand
It thrills you with a feeling
That you cannot understand.
You feel that bond of brotherhood
That tie that’s sure to come
When you hear him say in a friendly way
“I see you’ve traveled some.”

And if you are a stranger,
In a strange land all alone,
If fate has left you stranded –
Dead broke and far from home,
O, it’s a grand and glorious feeling,
It thrills you – makes you numb,
When he says, with a grip of fellowship –
“I see you’ve traveled some.”

And when your final summons comes,
To the last long trip,
Adorned with lambskin Apron White
And gems of fellowship;
The Tyler at the Golden Gate,
With Square and rule and plumb
Will size up your pin, and say,
“Walk in - I see you’ve traveled some.”

"Masonry"
reprinted from the “100th Anniversary 1855-1955”

Masonry constantly reminds us of that tremendous episode which shall be our inevitable experience in the course of change and dissolution. But it also arrests our attention with fresh buoyancy of anticipation, by its lofty lessons of the external and its promise of fullness, when life’s temple shall have been completed.

Beyond the sunset’s evenfall
Unsetting suns shall rise again;
The gates of morning shall unclose
And usher the immortal day.

Every man who crosses the threshold of Masonry should have a definite aim, for he is entering upon a new life and unless he has some purpose in this important step he is liable to fall prey to lawless and selfish desires.
The Masonry that is dearest to our hearts is the Masonry which in its practical application enriches, ennobles and sweetens the lives of those who come under the influence of its benign principles.

"We Swear To Be True To A Brother"
reprinted from “King Solomon and His Followers – Ohio – A Valuable Aid To The Memory”, 1929

Dear Friends of the Square, let us cherish the faith,
Though broken and torn every other!
REMEMBER THE VOW; - we swore unto death
We would cling, hand and heart, to a Brother!
Then raise up to God, up to God the left hand!
With mine join, with mine join the other!
Though war blow the blast, and with death strew the land,
WE SWEAR TO BE TRUE TO A BROTHER!

The East lends its light, though the world is at war;
The South shines in glory and beauty;
The West gently smiles o’er fields drenched in gore, -
They teach to the Mason his duty!

The Badge of the Craft is unsullied as yet –
From war’s dust and blood let us fold it!
The Page of our History, brilliant with light;
Let’s swear thus in honor to hold it!

GREAT GOD! From Thy Throne view the nation at strife!
THY GAVEL must heal this disorder!
Send Peace o’er the land! Give Refuge and Life!
Be Thou, Lord, our Saviour and Warder!

"Stand Down"
original contribution by Bro. Arthur K. Barnes

Fallen Soldiers whose mission is done
Tears stain The Flag, one by one.
A loved one’s fear and a Soldier’s pride
Heartbreak and Honor stand side by side.
Sacrificed on the Alter of Freedom
For all to see.
Stand Down, Soldier: Rest In Peace.

♦ Appendix ♦

  • 1855 to Present day list of Worshipful Masters.
  • Principle Sources

Worshipful Masters

Alliance Lodge #271
1855 J. R. Conrad
1856 J. R. Conrad
1857 J. R. Conrad
1858 J. R. Conrad
1859 J. R. Conrad

 

1860 J. R. Conrad
1861 J. M. Filson
1862 J. R. Conrad
1863 J. R. Conrad
1864 J. R. Conrad
1865 J. R. Conrad
1866 J. R. Conrad
1867 J. R. Conrad
1868 Bradford Miller
1869 J. R. Conrad

 

1870 J. R. Conrad
1871 J. R. Conrad
1872 J. H. Sharer
1873 J. H. Sharer
1874 J. H. Sharer
1875 Charles Chapman
1876 Charles Chapman
1877 Charles Chapman
1878 R. C. Greenlee
1879 S. J. Williams

 

1880 J. H. Sharer
1881 J. H. Sharer
1882 J. H. Sharer
1883 J. H. Sharer
1884 J. H. Sharer
1885 A. C. Silver
1886 A. C. Silver

Conrad Lodge #494
1875 J. R. Conrad
1876 J. R. Conrad
1877 O. J. Heusted
1878 O. J. Heusted
1879 E. Townsend Goucher

 

1880 O. J. Heusted
1881 O. J. Heusted
1882 Charles Chapman
1883 Charles Chapman
1884 Charles Chapman
1885 T. G. Hair
1886 T. G. Hair

McFadden Lodge #697
1925 Dillon Crist
1926 Dillon Crist
1927 A. C. Ball
1928 Ralph G. Harshman
1929 Bert Meredith

 

1930 Frank S. Curtis
1931 William R. Jones
1932 Martin A. Brown
1933 Milton S. Geiger
1934 Walter D. Handwork
1935 Arthur H. Linrode
1936 Floyd E. Grabiel
1937 Raymond R. Stuckey
1938 Elmer E. Chase
1939 Ross P. Hilles

 

1940 Hiram H. Firestone
1941 Richard White
1942 Fred S. Garman
1943 Fred S. Garman
1944 Almon J. Damon
1945 Ben Temple
1946 Delmas McCarty
1947 George A. Noble
1948 Charles I. Melaney
1949 Paul H. Chapman

 

1950 Paul F. Lange
1951 Bennie K. White
1952 Irl E. Pieren
1953 Ernest C. Angle
1954 Michael W. Ziegler
1955 Earl E. Wells
1956 Paul William Chapple
1957 Duane W. Crist
1958 Dyoll H. Burns
1959 Robert C. Smithyman

1960 Arthur Shock
1961 Jordan Dezenzo
1962 Jerry Manzi
1963 John Foster
1964 Ronald Hedin
1965 Clifford Brainard
1966 James Hawley
1967 Gordon Rinehart
1968 Willie Anderson
1969 Lawrence W. Handwork

1970 Wells Oyster
1971 Mike W. Folk
1972 Willis L. Moore
1973 Robert K. Moore
1974 Albert H. O'Mealy
1975 Clyde E. Whitcomb
1976 Lee E. Binion, Jr.
1977 William E. Moore
1978 Frank A. Bush
1979 William C. Broyles

1980 Robert H. Shoemaker
1981 Roland L. Kendrick
1982 Tom J. Schoonover, Jr.
1983 Robert K. Moore
1984 Michael S. Burnett
1985 Mark E. Turkson, Jr.
1986 John R. Schmidt
1987 Stony Thornton
1988 Ross O. Stamm
1989 Issac C. Hill

Conrad Lodge #271
1886 T. G. Hair
1887 A. B. Love
1888 A. B. Love
1889 J. M. Stillwell

1890 J. M. Stillwell
1891 D. B. Cassaday
1892 D. B. Cassaday
1893 John Welty
1894 John Welty
1895 John H. Lloyd
1896 John H. Lloyd
1897 C. H. Miller
1898 C. H. Miller
1899 J. A. Roach

1900 J. A. Roach
1901 T. D. Russell
1902 J. E. McFadden
1903 J. E. McFadden
1904 J. E. McFadden
1905 W. J. Morris
1906 J. W. Guthrie
1907 J. W. Guthrie
1908 J. E. Temple
1909 C. W. Smith

1910 H. C. Newman
1911 W. W. Scott
1912 W. W. Scott
1913 J. C. Hutton
1914 E. C. Courtney
1915 C. T. Morgan
1916 F. R. Donaldson
1917 F. R. Donaldson
1918 N. R. Snodgrass
1919 W. W. Scott

1920 L. B. Orr
1921 F. P. Gow
1922 B. O. Cowan
1923 R. C. Graham
1924 Dillon Crist
1925 L. P. Pennell
1926 C. O. Glenwright
1927 J. G. McLean
1928 E. E. Witherspoon
1929 Ralph S. Miller

1930 Fred Throne
1931 William P. Yerian
1932 J. Aldene Reynolds
1933 Merle Messenheimer
1934 Lorin D. Roath
1935 S. S. Lipely
1936 Nile H. Long
1937 Harry L. Morrison
1938 James E. Vogt
1939 Emmanuel Zimmerman

1940 Lawrence F. Baldwin
1941 Arthur C. Nedheiser
1942 Clair O'Dell
1943 Glen D. Allen
1944 Howard E. Lipely
1945 Paul W. Cope
1946 Corwin B. Smith
1947 Robert T. Pence
1948 Wayne E. Walter
1949 George G. Lindsley

1950 Lewis L. Teets
1951 Robert L. Kniveton
1952 Owen L. Cunningham
1953 Glenn W. Thompson
1954 Dale Johnston
1955 Charles A. Noble
1956 Allen Wanderslaben
1957 Joseph Szasz
1958 William Parker
1959 William E. Clark

1960 John D. McKee
1961 William E. Leyda
1962 Karl Johnson
1963 Earl W. Feller
1964 C. F. Garman
1965 Eldon Adams
1966 Gilbert Dawson
1967 Walter D. Allen
1968 David A. Zufall
1969 Clifford W. Kehr

1970 James D. Cobbs
1971 Thomas W. Boyce
1972 Vernon Bailey
1973 Ray Anderson
1974 Dan Irmie
1975 Edward Shanks
1976 John L. Rummel
1977 Tom Schneider
1978 Lewis E. Lehman
1979 Danny J. Yeagley

1980 Robert C. Greene
1981 Robert F. Thomas
1982 Richard L. Greenwalt
1983 Thomas W. Wilson
1984 James M. Adcock
1985 Gerald C. Beck
1986 Richard L. Greenwalt
1987 Donald M. Moore
1988 Richard L. Bowhall
1989 Karl A. Krahling

1990 Robert H. Miller
1991 Earl Spahlinger
1992 Isaac C. Hill
1993 Herbert L. Zigler
1994 Earl Spahlinger
1995 Michael R. Zigler
1996 Michael R. Zigler
1997 Gregory Sivert
1998 Fred McGavern
1999 Fred McGavern

2000 Fred McGavern
2001 Harvey F. Morgan
2002 Harvey F. Morgan
2003 Fred McGavern/Gregory Sivert
2004 William R. Miller
2005 Thomas W. Wilson
2006 John W. Connell
2007 Mark MacLagan
2008 Sherman L. Brick
2009 John W. Connell

2010 John W. Connell
2011 Kevin Hoyt Boston
2012 Kevin Hoyt Boston
2013 Kevin Hoyt Boston
2014 J. Michael Linihan Sr.

2015 J. Michael Linihan Sr.

2016 Don Wojtowicz

Principal Sources

  1. Annual Return 1925-26 McFadden Lodge #697.
  2. Conrad Lodge No. 271 Alliance, Ohio 100th Anninversary 1855 – 1955.
  3. Discussions with informed brethren about events taking place at the lodge.
  4. Grand Lodge Annual Reports.
  5. Images of America: Alliance, by Lyle Crist and Greg Bara.
  6. Masonic Temple Building Corner Stone Box Contents document.
  7. Minutes of Lodge meetings.
  8. Program of Dedication of Masonic Temple Alliance, Ohio. New Years Day, 1918.
  9. Stark County Courthouse Records.
  10. The Alliance Review and The Alliance Review and Leader newspapers.
  11. The Trestleboard.
  12. Written History of the Alliance Lodge #271 and Conrad Lodge #494 written by W.M. S.S. Lipely .
  13. Written History of the Conrad Lodge #271 F. & A.M. on file with the Grand Lodge of Ohio.
  14. Written History of the McFadden Lodge #697 F. & A.M. on file with the Grand Lodge of Ohio.

Worshipful Master Mark Maclagan, W.M.
Worshipful Brother Wells Oyster, P.M.
Worshipful Brother Michael L. Zigler, P.M.
Brother Joseph G. Grabiel, M.M.
September 1, 2008
Updated September 14, 2016

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Conrad Lodge No 271 F & AM
144 S Linden Ave

Alliance, 44601


Phone: (330) 823-5181

E-mail: conradlodge@gmail.com

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