The first record of inquiry regarding the establishment of a Masonic Lodge in Estancia was on February 14, 1906 in a letter from John L. Norris MD to A.A. Keen, Grand Secretary requesting information on starting a Lodge. A second letter, dated February 26,1906, from T.B. Grimshaw to A.A. Keen, Grand Secretary informing him that Dr. J.L. Grimshaw and about 17 Masons from 9 states wanted to organize a lodge in Estancia. James A. Rodgers (Hon)
On November 22, 1906 a Petition for Dispensation was signed by 15 Masons and submitted to the Grand Lodge. The following officers on the petition were: John F. Lasater Master, George H. Van Stone Senior Warden, George E. Woods Junior Warden. On June 10,1907 a Dispensation was granted for Estancia Lodge by Grand Master A.N. Pratt with the following Officers: John F. Lasater Master, George H. Van Stone Senior Warden, J.I. Rawson of Faithful No.448, Iowa, Junior Warden. The Lodge was instituted Under Dispensation on June l4th,1907 by Robert Kellahin, Grand Lecturer. During August and September of 1907, three brothers were initiated: James P. Dunlavy and Duncan and Atlan McGillvary. On October 12,1907 a Petition for a Charter was filed and a fee of $23.00 was paid to the Grand Lodge. The Charter was granted at The Annual Communication of the Grand Lodge on October 22, 1907 and constituted and dedicated on December 27,1907 by John B. Cecill, DDGM.
On August 22, 1908 the building and records of the Lodge were destroyed by fire. On November 30, 1913 the Lodge again burned and everything was lost except the records of the Secretary and Treasurer, which had been taken home.
The Lodge met for several years in the second floor of a cement block building. In 1937 the Lodge purchased an old store building which was remodeled and made a fine Masonic home. A basement room included a kitchen-dining area and recreation room. The main floor housed a Lodge room, preparation room and entry hall. The hall was dedicated at a special Grand Lodge communication January 12,1938, Horace P. Brunnell, Past Master and long-time Superintendent of Schools acted as Grand Master. The Lodge bought the adjacent building ia I971; and, through some more remodeling done by the members, improved their facilities to care for all of the needs of the Lodge and appendant bodies. The expanded facilities were dedicated December 22, 1971 with LaMoine "Red" Langston, Past Grand Master, acting as Grand Master. Langston had once been Superintendent of Schools in Estancia. F. Wayne Laws and B. Mell Grissom, both former Masters of the Lodge and Past Grand Masters, assisted.
Hand written By-Laws of the Lodge as of May 25, 1912 show that the fees for the Degrees were $50.00 and the annual dues were $4.00. The fees for the Degrees were increased about 50 years later to $75.00 and then another 50 years, or so passed and the fees were raised to $102.00 in 1998. This brought the fees more in line with the fees of the other lodges of the state. The current dues are $30.00.
The Annual Return for Estancia Lodge No.33 for 1907 indicated that there were 18 members of the Lodge. It grew steadily to 68 members in 1922 and then a decline in membership started. Suddenly in 1938 the Lodge gained 14 members in one year for a total of 78. The Lodge reached a peak in membership in 1952 and 1953 of 110 members and the decline again started. In 1983 there was an increase of 38 members from 98 to 128 with the consolidation of Mountainair Lodge No.47 and again started to decline until 1995 and 1996 when the membership was increased to 112. The Annual Return for the Lodge in 1997 indicated a membership of 108 members.
Estancia Lodge No. 33 is known throughout the state for the Annual Estancia Outdoor Comunication. On August 16,1944 the first dispensation was granted to Estancia Lodge No. 33 to hold an outdoor communication in the Manzano Mountains. Fifty years later, in 1994, the "Outdoor" was moved to RWB Stanley Nykanen's Ranch south of Edgewood, NM. The original site had been designated a wilderness area. Barbecue, beans and chili are usually the items on the menu. The brothers travel from around New Mexico and other states are always present. The "Outdoor Committee" starts early on Friday night with the setup and fellowship. The evening is topped off a steak dinner or something equally as appetizing for the help.
At the Annual Communication in 1946, Grand Master, Bert A. Robbins had the following to say about "Outdoor Meetings". "Just what evolves at one of these meetings to create their growing popularity would be just a little difficult to explain. But there does exist that certain something, intangible and imperceptible, which may be experienced only an actual attendance, and which all but defies vocal expression. On every hand one hears the members of the several Lodges asking their officers; '"' Why can't we have something like this?" The operators of a great ranch had this to say; '"You boys find a location; a little less vulnerable to the wind and we'll see that it's fixed up." Nature must, of course, lend her kindly and smiling assistance; due and proper caution must be exercised; there should not be too much "fixing up"; and committees will find a generous amount of work is involved. They are, nevertheless, tremendously inspirational and worthwhile."
The preceding history was compiled from information in "The History of Masons in New Mexico" by LaMoine Langston Grand Master 1962-63 and as reported to the Lodge, October 22,1997, by MWB Ray D. Carpenter PGM, Grand Secretary on the occasion of the 90th Anniversary of the Lodge's Charter.
Year 1900s 1910s 1920s 1930s 1940s 00 George E. Woods Ralph G. Roberson James J. Hall Gerald R. Williams 01 Earl Scott Ansil B. Hale Benjamin L. Mullen Edward B. Wiggins 02 Julios C. Meyer Ansil B. Hale Forrest P. Brunell Paul N. Dannabic 03 Henry C. Shouse George B. Fenley Jerome B. Fish Earl Parker, Sr. 04 Charles E. Ewing George B. Fenley Albert T.Cochran Charlie Shook 05 George B. Fenley Walter E. Timmons Clyde M. McCulloch Benjamin J. Woodall 06 Dee W. Robinson Charles M. Milbourn John D. Estes William J. Sturgess 07 John F. Lasater George E. Woods Samuel G. Bass James M. Terry Lenness N. Sewell 08 John F. Lasater Albert R. Grinnell Forest L. Mason Ernest L. Hawkins B. Mel Grissom (PGM 1969) 09 John F. Lasater George P. Fenley Fred B. Hartman F. Wayne Laws (PGM 1956) Donald T. West Year 1950s 1960s 1970s 1980s 1990s 00 Milton E. Norris P.F. August Kayser Charles H. Grissom Robert R. Johnston Daniel L. Milbourn 01 Huggard C. Pogue J.C. Alderson Elwyn N. Robinson Darrold K. Owens Stanley E. Nykanen 02 Leon D. Shoomake Earl Parker Jr. Raymond O. Snow Bill F. Martin James L. Sours 03 George B. Grimes Wallace R. Wilson Robert D. Poage George L.Straley Elvis S. Draughn 04 B. Mel Grissom (PGM 1969) Author S. Childers Thomas M. Myers Robert R. Sowell Thomas B. "Bo" Simmons 05 Floyd H. Bailey Elver L.Norris Marion A. Gates J.C. Alderson J. Morrow Hall 06 R. Frank Sturges William C. Riggs Joe W. Brooks Roy V. McConkey, III Howard R. Achilles
07 Everett C. Ernest Bill F. Martin Charles R. Byrne Duane E. Walker Wesley D. Thornton 08 Charles B. Nicholson Donald O. Clark Raymond E. Butler Elvis S. Draughn Jimmie A. Berkey 09 Charles Sturges Richard Lloyd Fred E. George Charles M. Hart Charles D.A. McCoy Year 2000s 2010s 2020s 2030s 2040s 00 Tommie Crosswhite 01 Donnie Medina 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09
The first record of inquiry regarding the establishment of a Masonic Lodge in Estancia was on February 14, 1906 in a letter from John L. Norris MD to A.A. Keen, Grand Secretary requesting information on starting a Lodge. A second letter, dated February 26,1906, from T.B. Grimshaw to A.A. Keen, Grand Secretary informing him that Dr. J.L. Grimshaw and about 17 Masons from 9 states wanted to organize a lodge in Estancia.
James A. Rodgers (Hon)