Master Masons Association

There is much history involved with the Association of the eleven lodges of the 22nd District. The original name was THE MASTERS, PAST MASTERS AND WARDENS ASSOCIATION. When this was changed to the current name of Master Masons Association I can not seem to find. There are many copies of a publication called The Blue Bulletin that has information and pictures of the officers and activities of the Masonic organizations in the 22nd district. In the 1970 issue (the 13th edition) the following history notes are printed. There is no author listed and thus credit cannot be given for the write-up.

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HISTORY NOTES

THE MASTERS, PAST MASTERS AND WARDENS ASSOCIATION

The Masters and Wardens Association was re-organized in the latter part of the year 1956 under the direction of the District Deputy Grand Master Rt. Wor. Isaac R. Semones, of Williamson Road Lodge No. 163. Brother Semones appointed a committee consisting of Wor. Bro. W. T. Watkins of Pleasants Lodge No. 63, Rt. Wor. W. P. Reed of Lakeland Lodge No. 190, Brother Sidney E. Allen of Lakeland Lodge No. 190 and Wor. R.P. Keithly of Catawba Lodge No. 342 of Fincastle. These Brethren met and drew up a recommended set of By-laws, name of organization, and recommended meeting dates. These recommendations were approved and adopted at the next meeting of the Association in December of 1956. However, these letters and recommendations were lost, and new By-laws were adopted in the year 1960.

The year 1957 was the first active year of the Association, with past records indicating that there had not been an active Association since the early part of the year 1940, and any records of Association activities kept during these former years were not available, even though an effort was made to obtain them. However, investigations indicated that accurate records of any past Association activities were not kept as such. Papers are in the files indicating various Association activities during the early twenties and thirties.

The Association had a most active year in 1957. The District Deputy Rt. Wor. William T. Watkins of Pleasants Lodge No. 63, and the Association President Wor. W. B. Jackson of Melrose No. 139, scheduled six meetings of the Association. Past Grand Master O.M. Miles addressed the Association at one meeting of the year, and Past Grand Master A. Douglas Smith of Richmond addressed the Association on the Organization of the Order of DeMolay. The Grand Master Mt. Wor. Archer B. Gay addressed the Association during his official visit. In this year the Association established a number of Association committees which rendered great service to the ten lodges of the district. [Cave Spring #230 and Webber High Twelve #282 were chartered in 1964 and 1977 respectively.]

These included a Blood Bank, Sick Visitation and Funeral, DeMolay, and Employment Committees. During the year 1958, Rt. Wor. George Wood of Taylor Lodge No. 23 served as District Deputy Grand Master, and Wor. R. E. Slaydon of Lakeland Lodge No. 190 as the Association President. The Association held four meetings during this year, and the committees appointed in 1957 became more active, and this marked the second year of the publication of the Blue Bulletin. Again during this year minutes of the several meetings were not kept.

The Association during this year held a Masonic Picnic, which did not meet with satisfactory attendance, and was discontinued the following year.

During the year 1959, Wor. Bro. Samuel I. Graham of Pleasants Lodge No. 63 served as the Association President, and Rt. Wor. O. W. Coon of Catawba Lodge No. 342 served as District Deputy Grand Master. The Association in this year continued to improve in activities. In each year of 1958 and 1959, the highlight of the Association was the joint visitation of the Grand Master to the 22nd Masonic District. Again in this year no minutes of the several meetings were kept.

In 1960 and the following years accurate minutes have been kept with more detailed records of Association activities.

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Since 1986 (the earliest record I can find) the Association has produced a directory listing the lodges and officers for the year along with a Masonic calendar of activities. The past few years this has developed into a directory that includes sponsors, district officers, district activities, grand lodge officers and activities, ritual assistance chart of members and advertisers. These are available in January at the Ritual School and cost $5.00. The money derived from sales of advertisements and sponsorships is used to support Masonic events such as: Grand Master visitations, donations to youth organizations, donations to various charities, Child ID events, charitable Golf tournaments to name a few.

Bill Seymour, Treasurer, MMA 2003 – 2010