Established In 1982

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SUMMARY OF LODGE HISTORY

by

Past Master Thomas J. Harriel, Jr.

Several active and retired military personnel, who were Prince Hall Masons, representing several Masonic Jurisdictions within the Continental United States, came together at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base pursuant to military orders. This group of Prince Hall Masons assembled together during September 1978 to discuss the idea of forming a Masonic Study Club on Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio for the following principal purposes:

1.    To keep sojourning brethren in touch with the fraternity by studying its precepts and teachings;

2.    To participate in Masonic activities within the Masonic Jurisdiction of Ohio, and

3.    To involve themselves in community activities.

Although, the group had not formally organized by December 1978, several dedicated Masons regularly met at the Noncommissioned Officers Open Mess’ Annex from September 1978 until the end of that year. During this time, the group developed plans to petition the Most Worshipful Prince Hall Grand Lodge of Ohio to become a Masonic Study Club on Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio for the purposes cited in the preceding paragraph.

During early 1979, the group, holding its meetings in the Annex of the Noncommissioned Officers Open Mess on Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, petitioned the M. W. Prince Hall Grand Lodge of Ohio to organize, meet and work as a Masonic Study Club on the base. During the group’s meeting on March 7, 1979, R. W. Aron Moss, Jr., informed the members that M. W. Grand Master William A. McClain was putting the approval of their petition in final form, and they have permission to operate as a study club. R. W. Moss all suggested that the club submit a letter to Mrs. Edward Dugger, requesting permission to use the name of her late husband, Past Grand Master Edward Dugger, Jr., for our study club.

M. W. Grand Master William A. McClain, finding the group’s request to be proper, signed a Dispensation on February 28, 1979, authorizing these Prince Hall Masons to establish a Masonic Study Club on Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio for the purpose of studying the Masonic Precepts and the Ohio Ritualistic Practices. This Dispensation did not authorize the Masonic Study Club to perform ritualistic degree work, and it was delivered to the Presiding Officer, Brother Richard L. Jones at the club’s meeting on March 22, 1979 by R. W. Aron Moss, Jr., and Brother Booker T. Webster.

The group, having been empowered to study the Masonic Precepts and the Ohio Ritual, on base then followed the suggestion of R. W. Aron Mass, Jr. The Presiding Officer, Brother Richard L. Jones sent a letter to Mrs. Edward Dugger, who resided in Dayton, Ohio, requesting permission to use the name of her late husband for the Masonic Study Club. The name of Edward Dugger, Jr., was agreed upon by this Masonic Study Club because of Past Grand Master Dugger’s affiliation with the base; being the "first" Black Engineer to work on the installation, and because of his outstanding work within the Ohio Masonic Jurisdiction.

Mrs. Dugger’s response to Brother Jones’ letter is quoted, in part, for your information:

"I was touched and flattered that you would request, on behalf of a group of Prince Hall Masons to name your study club in honor of my husband, Edward Dugger, Jr. Please know that you have my permission to proceed as you indicated, and I feel sure that somewhere up there, Eddie will be smiling too. . . ."

The Masonic Study Club opened its April 12, 1979 meeting in the same manner as a regularly constituted Lodge.   By mid-May 1979, the study club had received permission to organize a Masonic Study Club to use the late Past Grand Master Edward Dugger, Jr.’s name for its club. On May 11, 1979, Brother Richard L. Jones sent another letter to the 2750 Air Base Wing/SS, requesting the Masonic Study Club be designated as a Private Organization on the base.

In a letter, dated June 1, 1979 to club members, the Presiding Officer, Brother Richard L. Jones, proclaimed every Thursday and Saturdays of each month as meeting days. Meeting on the Second and Fourth Thursdays would start at 17:30 hours (5:30 p.m.), while meeting on the First, Third and Fifth Thursdays would start at 1900 hours (7:00 p.m.). Meeting on Saturdays would start at 1500 hour (3:00 p.m.). The reason for this stringent meeting schedule steemed from Brother Jones’s desire to have the club members learn the ritualistic work as quickly as possible, so they would be proficient enough to render assistance to any of the local Lodges in Dayton, if called upon for such service.

Edward Dugger, Jr., Masonic Study Club met regularly for the remaining months of this year, and held its first installation of officers on September 27, 1979. Brother Booker T. Webster presided. The first Edward Dugger, Jr., Masonic Study Club Officers were: Worshipful Master, Brother Richard L. Jones, Senior Warden, Brother Andrew M. Watson, Junior Warden, Brother Thomas H. Savage, Treasurer, Brother Clarence W. "Bud" Willis, Secretary, Brother James O. Freeman, Assistant Secretary, Brother Charles V. Williams, III, Senior Deacon, Brother Julius C. White, Junior Deacon, Brother Oscar J. Waddell, Senior Steward, Brother Purcell N. Brown, Junior Steward, Brother William H. Anderson, Marshall, Brother Curtis Walker, Chaplain, Brother James J. Lytle, Jr., and Tyler, Brother William E. Johnson.

Edward Dugger, Jr., Military Study Club held its first election of officers on December 13, 1979 for the ensuing year. Brother Booker T. Webster presided. Those brethren elected and appointed to serve during calendar year 1980 were: Worshipful Master Richard L. Jones, Senior Warden, Brother Thomas H. Savage, Junior Warden, Brother Charles V. Williams, III, Treasurer, Brother Thomas H. Moore, and Secretary, Brother James J. Lytle, Jr. Worshipful Master Richard L. Jones made the following appointments on January 10, 1980: Senior Deacon, Brother Purcell N. Brown, Junior Deacon, Brother Oscar J. Waddell, Senior Steward, Brother Anthony Jones, Junior Steward, Brother Inus G. Crawford, Marshall, Brother Andrew E. Gooch, Chaplain, Brother Thomas J. Harriel, Jr., and Tyler, Brother William E. Johnson. NOTE: Brother Clarence W. "Bud" Willis resigned as Treasurer for reasons unknown, and a special election was conducted. Brother Thomas H. Moore was unanimously elected as Treasurer. Brother Booker T. Webster installed all elected and appointed officers on January 10, 1980.

Edward Dugger, Jr., Military Study Club carried out all regular Masonic activities during the period: January 1980 through August 1982.  On August 6, 1982, then Worshipful Master Charles V. Williams, III and Secretary George B. Douglas sent a letter to the M. W. Grand Master requesting authority to become a new lodge. Twenty (20) Demits, Minutes, showing the names of the first three principle officers, and the names of twenty-six (26) members of the club supporting the act to become a lodge. During the 133rd Annual Grand Lodge Communication, the committee on Charters and Dispensations recommended, and the Grand Lodge approved a Charter to issued to Edward Dugger, Jr., Masonic Stud Club, and that its name be: Edward Dugger, Jr., Military Lodge, and its Number be: 123.

Edward Dugger, Jr., Masonic Study Club was formally opened on October 31, 1982 at approximately 2:00 p.m. Subsequently, M. W. Grand Master Kenneth E. Lewis and other Grand Lodge officers were received. WM Charles V. Williams, III then passed the gavel to M. W. Grand Master Kenneth E. Lewis, who called off a Study Club for the purpose of chartering a new Lodge, and ordered the Grand Marshall to for a procession to march to the Kittyhawk Recreational Center, Building 1197, where Edward Dugger, Jr., Military Lodge No. 123 was to be officially constituted and chartered. M. W. Grand Master Lewis convened an Occasional Grand Lodge at 3:00 p.m., on this day and chartered the "first" and "youngest" Military Lodge in the history of the Ohio Masonic Jurisdiction.

Since this historical date on October 31, 1982 to present, Edward Dugger, Jr., Military Lodge has had twenty (27) brethren to be elected to the Oriental Chair in the East and served as Worshipful Master of this Military Lodge. Their names and the year served are listed below:

1982 Richard L. Jones

1997 Douglas L. White

1983 Thomas H. Savage

1998 Arnim A. Collins

1984 Clarence W. "Bud" Willis

1999 James H. Foster, II

1985 Charles V. Williams, III 

2000 John L. Walker

1986 Oscar J. Waddell

2001 - James E. Hardnick, Jr

1987 James J. Lytle, Jr

2002 - Victor E. Cole

1988 Thomas J. Harriel, Jr

2003 - Mancedon R. Johnson

1989 Julius C. White

2004 Edward Thomas

1990 Michael L. Freeman

2005 - Bradford J. Stallworth

1991 Joseph E. Toliver, Jr.

2006 - Melvin B. Buckman

1992 Arper Tentman, Jr.

2007 - Jimmy Kilpatrick

1993 William K. Harvey

2008 -2009  Carlton  H. Johnston

1994 Jimmie E. Johnson

 

1995 William H. Anderson

 

1996 Joseph L. Thompson

 

 

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