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Lodge History

Petitioning for a Warrant for a Lodge at State College, PA and Warranting Said Lodge

The Ahiman Rezon presents the required format for a "Petition for a Warrant for a New Lodge." Unfortunately neither the Ahiman Rezon nor the petition presented to Grand Lodge indicate any date. It must be presumed that one of the signing sessions indicated in the planning meetings was used to sign the petition. Historical records from Brother F. M. Torrence indicate that the undated petition was taken to Bellefonte, PA on December 22, 1919 by Brothers F M. Torrence and PeterĀ· H. Dole when W. Harrison Walker, D.D.G.M., and Brother George Rhoades, W.M. of Bellefonte Lodge #268 approved the petition for a lodge at State College. Apparently, Brother William Frear, P.M. of Bellefonte Lodge #268 had approved and signed the petition earlier; his name appears on the petition but no mention is made of his signing in the historical records. Later the same day, Brothers F. M. Torrence, P. H. Dale and James F Adams went to Centre Hall, PA and obtained the signatures of W. Frank Bradford, P.M. and C. William Boozer, P.M. of Old Fort Lodge #537, recommending approval of the petition.

On December 26, 1919 Brothers F. M. Torrence and W. G. Murtorff went to Philadelphia with the signed petition to meet with and present the petition to Brother John A. Perry, R.W. Grand Secretary. On December 27, 1919 Annual Communication of Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania, the following three D.D.G.M.'s offered their help in an effort to obtain a favorable conclusion to the warrant petition: Brothers J. Harrison Mussina, Lock Haven; Fred Godcharles, Milton; Sion B. Smith, Pittsburgh. Brother Sion B. Smith, D.D.G.M., accompanied Brothers F. M. Torrence and W. G. Murtorff to a meeting of the Grand Officers. It is interesting to note that D.D.G.M. W. Harrison Walker did not attend this meeting. Brother Samuel M. Goodyear, Right Worshipful Grand Senior Warden initially objected to this petition because of the damage it would do to Old Fort Lodge #537. Finally this objection was removed and the motion to approve the petition for a Warrant of a Masonic Lodge in State College, PA was unanimously approved. Brother James B. Krouse, R.W.G.M. advised Brother Torrence to leave a Masonic Temple in the background and get the lodge started.

A photocopy of the original "Petition for a Warrant for a new Lodge" follows:

Warrant Petition Page 1 Warrant Petition Page 2 Warrant Petition Page 3 Warrant Petition Page 4

The number "700" for State College Lodge was the result of sequential numbering of the Lodges and did not constitute any special consideration of Grand Lodge.

As previously stated, a telegram was sent from the Grand Secretary's Office informing Brother F. M. Torrence, W.M. Elect that the R. W. Grand Master would constitute State College Lodge No. 700 on Wednesday, January 21, 1920 at 12:00 noon. Prior to this date, Brothers F. M. Torrence and P. H. Dole visited W. Harrison Walker, D.D.G.M., to attend to details required for entertaining the Grand Officers and the supplies required for constituting State College Lodge No. 700. Equipment, including Grand Lodge Chest, aprons, wands and columns were borrowed from Bellefonte Lodge #268 on the morning of January 21, 1920. The Grand Lodge Officers arrived at 10:45 a.m. and immediately went to the Acacia Fraternity for dinner; returning to the IOOF Hall at 11:40 a.m. Grand Lodge was opened at 12:03 p.m. and State College Lodge No. 700 was declared constituted at 1:35 p.m., January 21, 1920. Grand Lodge closed at this time. After the ceremony of consecration was completed, the following elected officers were duly installed in ancient form:

  • Frank Miller Torrence - Worshipful Master
  • William George Murtorff - Senior Warden
  • Frederick Pattison Weaver - Junior Warden
  • Ray D. Gilliland - Treasurer
  • George Glenn - Secretary

The new Lodge was closed by its officers at 2:19p.m. A photocopy of the Special Communication held at State College, PA on January 21, 1920 follows, along with a list of the Warrant Members. A photocopy of the program for January 21, 1920 also follows:

Special Communications Page 1 Special Communications Page 2 Special Communications Page 3 1920 Lodge Program Page 1 1920 Lodge Program Page 2

Warrant Members

  • Adams, James F.
  • Behrer, Harry J.
  • Bell, Rupert H.
  • Blaisdell, Thomas C.
  • Borland, Andrew A.
  • Braman, Winfred W.
  • Cochrane, Donald C.
  • Dale, Peter H.
  • Davis, George W.
  • Deal, Albert
  • Deal, Harold H.
  • Decker, Claude H.
  • Ferguson, John A.
  • Fessenden, Edwin A.
  • Foster, Robert M.
  • Garver, David B.
  • Gilliland, Ray D.
  • Glenn, George
  • Green, George R.
  • Havner, Harrison H.
  • Hess, Samuel M.
  • lllingsworth, Henry S.
  • Jackson, George B.
  • Kapp, David F.
  • Kinsloe, Charles L.
  • Knoll, Frank P.
  • Koch, Harry N.
  • Kunze, Edward J.
  • McBride, Charles G.
  • Mairs, Thomas I.
  • Murtorff, William G.
  • Northrup, Harry B.
  • O'Donnell, Raymond
  • Parkinson, Harry G.
  • Parks, Lytle R.
  • Patterson, Thomas S.
  • Platt, Lynn
  • Prichard, RobertS.
  • Robinson, Clarence C.
  • Shattuck, Harold B.
  • Shumaker, Roscoe E.
  • Smith, James C.
  • Snider, Floyd C.
  • Snyder, Jacob C.
  • Snyder, John J.
  • Sousley, Clarence P.
  • Stavely, Earl B.
  • Taylor, John T.
  • Thompson, W. Harris
  • Tomhave, William H.
  • Torrence, Frank M.
  • Weaver, Frederick P.
  • Webber, Roy I.
  • Williams, James M.
  • Wood, Walter H.

The following Warrant Members were Past Masters in the lodges shown:

  • Peter H. Dale - Old Fort Lodge #537, Centre Hall, PA
  • Edwin A. Fessenden - Twilight Lodge #114, Columbus, Ohio
  • George R. Green - Coalport Lodge #57 4, Coalport, PA
  • Harry B. Northrup - Bellefonte Lodge #268, Bellefonte, PA
  • Frank M. Torrence - Old Fort Lodge #537, Centre Hall, PA
  • Frederick P. Weaver - Coalport Lodge #574, Coalport, PA

There are no living Warrant Members.

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