When the Territory of Dakota was divided into North and South Dakota in 1889 the question arose of the necessity for a Grand Lodge in each of the two districts. It was decided that there must be a division of Grand Lodges to correspond with the political division. A Convention was held on June 12, 1889, at Mitchell which resolved that a Grand Lodge for North Dakota should be organized. The following Lodges were represented: Shiloh, No. 8; Pembina, Sto. 10; Casselton, No. 12; Acacia, No. 15; Bismarck, No. 16; Jamestown, No. 19; Valley City, No. 21; Nandan, No. 23; Cereal, No. 29; Hillsboro, No. 32; Crescent, No. 36; Cheyenne Valley, No. 41; Ellendale, No. 49; Sanborn, No. 51; Wahpeton, No. 58; North Star, No. 59; Minto, No. 60; Mackey, No. 63; Goose River, No. 64; Hiram, No. 74; Minnewaukan, Bio. 75; Tongue River, No. 78; Bathgate, No. 80; Euelid, No. 84; Anchor, No. 88; Golden Valley, No. 90; Occidental, No. 99. A Constitution and By-laws were adopted, Grand Officers duly elected, and the first session held the following day.
A similar problem occurred with regard to the Grand Chapter of North Dakota. The Chapters in South Dakota had organized their Grand Chapter on January 6, 1890. Thereupon the representatives of Missouri, No. 6; Casselton, No. 7; Cheyenne, No. 9; Keystone, No. 11; Jamestown, No. 13, and Lisbon, No. 29, organized on January 9 the Grand Chapter of North Dakota. The first Annual Convocation was held at Grand Forks, nine days later.
The first Council in North Dakota, Fargo, No. 1, was granted a Dispensation on February 12, 1889, while the Territory was still undivided. It was chartered, however, five months after the division took place, on November 19, 1889. At a Convention held on March 20, 1916, members of Fargo Council, No. 1; Lebanon, No. 2, and Adoniram, No. 3, organized the Grand Council of North Dakota as a constituent member of the General Grand Council. The Grand Master of the Grand Encampment of the United States issued a Dispensation to form the Commandery of North Dakota on June 4, 1890. Thereupon Tancred, No. 4; Fargo, No. 5; Grand Forks, No. 8, and Wi-ha-ha, No. 12, Commanderies on June 16, 1890, organized the Grand Commandery of North Dakota.
With regard to the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite, Southern Jurisdiction, Dakota Consistory, No. 1, was chartered on May 26, 1886; Fargo Council of Kadosh, No.1, on December 8,1883; Pelican Chapter of Rose Croix, No. 1, on June 19, 1883, and Enoch Lodge of Perfection, No. 1, on June 7, 1883.
In the Institutes of Menu, the sacred book of the Brahmans, it is said: "If any one has an incurable disease, let him advance in a straight path towards the invincible northeast point, feeding on water and air till his mortal frame totally decays, and his soul becomes united with the supreme." It is at the same northeast point that those first instructions begin in Freemasonry which enable the true Freemason to commence the erection of that spiritual temple in which, after the decay of his mortal frame, "his soul becomes united with the supreme. "
In the important ceremony which refers to the Northeast Corner of the Lodge, the Candidate becomes as one who is, to all outward appearance, a perfect and upright 7nan and Mason, the representative of a spiritual Corner-stone, on which he is to erect his future moral and Masonic edifice. This symbolic reference of the Corner-stone of a material edifice to a Freemason when, at his first initiation, he commences the moral and intellectual task of erecting a spiritual temple in his heart, is beautifully sustained when we look at all the qualities that are required to constitute a "well-tried, true, and trusty" Corner-stone. The squareness of its surface, emblematic of morality its cubical form, emblematic of firmness and stability of character and the peculiar finish and fineness of the material, emblematic of virtue and holiness show that the ceremony of the Northeast Corner of the Lodge was undoubtedly intended to portray, in the consecrated language of symbolism, the necessity of integrity and stability of conduct, of truthfulness and uprightness of character, and of purity and holiness of life, which, just at that time and in that place, the candidate is most impressively charged to maintain.
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“Hi Mike, got my ring day before yesterday. Beautiful is all I can say. Thanks so much. Better than I thought.”
Brother Joe, Joppa, MD