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History of Shively Lodge No. 951 F&AM

1960 - 2012 “By virtue of the Constitution and Laws of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of the State of Kentucky, Free and Accepted Masons and the power invested in me by the Grand Lodge, I shall proceed to institute a new Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons in this place, to be known as Shively Lodge, Under Dispensation, and set it regular at work.” “In the same name and authority of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of Kentucky, I do proclaim that Shively Lodge, F.&A.M., Under Dispensation, of Shively, Ky. Has been duly instituted in conformity to the rites of our Institution and the charges of our ancient and Honorable Fraternity, and may our Heavenly Father prosper, direct and counsel you in all your doings.”  With these words said by Most Worshipful Grand Master John R. Vinson, Jr., Cadiz, Ky. Shively Lodge U. D., F.&A.M. was born Friday Night, March 25, 1960 in the Butler High School, 2222 Crums Lane, Shively, KY. Before this event could take place, a lot of planning, work and preparation had to take place. In the fall of 1959, Brother Luther C. Scott asked Brother Stanley W. Crawley, Jr. about going ahead with plans to start a Masonic Lodge in Shively, Ky. Rumors that a West End Lodge was moving to Shively had not materialized. A survey was taken and we found there were more than the necessary fifteen Master Masons needed to form a new Lodge. In January 1960 notices were circulated that all Master Masons interested in forming a New Masonic Lodge to meet at the home of Brother Howard C. Reeves on February 6, 1960. We had three preparation meetings during February and March. We filled out a petition to the Grand Lodge to grant permission for a new Masonic Lodge in Shively, Ky. We decided that the name would be Shively Lodge, that we would meet on the first and third Saturday nights of the month and that each Charter Member would pay a fee of $25.00 to give the Lodge some working capital. Butler High School was decided upon as the regular meeting place for our Lodge, which was to be our home for our first three years. When on March 25, 1960, Grand Master Vinson set Shively Lodge U.D. to work. Thirty-three of thirtyfive Lodges in Jefferson County had voted favorable for us to start a new Lodge There were two hundred fifty Masons present, representing fifty-three Lodges from Kentucky and other States to see this new Lodge born. The following Officers were installed by Brother Al E. Orton, PGM. Grand Secretary, assisted by Brother Albert Phillips, Grand Treasurer, as Marshall. Stanley W. Crawley, Jr. Master: Edwin R. Acree, S. Warden: Howard C. Reeves, J. Warden: Ray Cook, Treasurer: Richard E. Lyons, Secretary: Luther C. Scott, Chaplain; E. Robert Merrick, Jr., S. Deacon; Joseph A. Davis, J. Deacon; Clifford Porritt, S. Steward; Henry H. Albro, J. Steward and Donald R. Stoelting, Tiler. Shively Lodge received their Charter from the Grand Lodge of Kentucky F.&A.M. on October 20, 1960, to be known as Shively Lodge No. 951, F.&A.M.. Brother James B. Patrick, D.D.G.M. District No. 16, made the official presentation of our Charter to our Lodge on November 5, 1960. All of our meetings were held in the TV room of Butler High School, 2222 Crums Lane, Shively, Ky. On June 16, 1962 a motion was made by Brother Elmer Gatewood and seconded by Brother Edwin R. Acree, PM, the Shively Lodge build a lodge hall on Hillview Avenue between Garrs Lane and Neville Drive. The Lodge Hall to be 50’ by 90’ with the Lodge Room on the second floor, five offices on the first floor and dining facilities in the basement. That the Lodge sell $50.00 and $100.00 bonds to help finance the building. This was brought to a vote on July 7, 1962 and carried unanimously. Brother Oliver Wilding was our architect and designer of plans for our new lodge hall. Excavation of the basement began on August 22, 1962 with the Most Worshipful Grand Master G.J. Hyde riding the bulldozer. The Cornerstone laying took place on a beautiful fall day. On Sunday, September 30, 1962, about 200 Masons, Officers and members of many Lodges formed on the parking lot at Garrs Lane and Dixie Highway and marched to the site of the new Lodge Hall, with the DeMolay for Boys leading the way. Altogether there were about 300 people who witnessed Most Worshipful Grand Master C.J. Hyde laying the Cornerstone. Our contractor was Brother Howard C. Reeves, Master of Shively Lodge for 1962. The first meeting in the new Lodge Hall was held on December 15, 1962, the last meeting Brother Howard Reeves was to preside as Master. The minutes for that night read: “At this meeting for the first time in our new Lodge Hall we had a very nice attendance of about eighty-five Brethren. The hall was not completed, the ceiling tile and floor tile were not on yet, final light fixtures were not installed, the floor tiers were not sanded and shellacked, nor had any permanent furniture been installed. This was the most enjoyable meeting in spite of some inconveniences, Brotherhood prevailed, everyone being deeply proud of the progress of our new Lodge Hall and the feeling that we were now at home.” This has been the home of Shively Lodge No. 951, F.&A.M. for better than twenty-seven years. Our lodge hall was built with most of the labor coming from the volunteer help of our members. Only that which we could not do ourselves did we have outside contractors do. These masons worked every night and all day Saturdays until the building was completed. An agreement was worked out with Sunset Lodge No. 915, F.&A.M. to borrow forty-five thousand dollars on a twenty year loan, which was received on April 8, 1963. We also had a second mortgage of twenty thousand dollars to Brother Ray Cook; Fourteen thousand dollars to Brother Howard Reeves; Five thousand to Brother James Smith and we had sold Sixteen thousand of the Fifty and One hundred dollar building bonds. We therefore had an indebtedness upon the completion of building our Lodge Hall of one hundred thousand dollars. During Brother Edwin R. Acree’s second year as Master, 1963, we showed our greatest net gain on membership in one year, eighty-two. Our Lodge Hall was dedicated on Sunday, August 18, 1963. Most Worshipful Grand Master James E. Elam presided at this meeting, which was opened to the public. We had about two hundred people in attendance for this enjoyable occasion. In 1964, under the leadership of our Master, Brother Joseph A. Davis, we started publishing a newspaper known as “The Shively Freemason” which was been published until around 1994. Shively Lodge was sadden by the death of Past Master Howard C. Reeves on April 8, 1965. The memorial in the minutes read “While many of our members worked long and hard, the credit for the building of our Lodge Hall, more than to any other Brother, belongs to our Past Master Reeves, for the location of the lot, study of the plans, the source of the material and credit for them, until we could pay, and the long hours he spent on the site, day after day, overseeing and inspecting the labor until it was completed. This building will remain a memorial for his love and labor for our Lodge and this Community. On June 5, 1965, the Lodge voted to name our building the “Howard C. Reeves Masonic Building”, that an aluminum plaque, with his name be placed on the front of the building and that a picture of Brother Reeves be placed in the entrance hall. After 1965 the Lodge paid off such $50 and $100 bonds when the members requested and they needed their money due to hardship, etc. Also during the next few years we paid off our second mortgages. At our Charter anniversary Dinner on October 26, 1970, our Master, Brother Charles E. Singleton presented a check to Brother Robert L. Boling, Master of Sunset Lodge No. 915, F.&A.M. for the final payment on the mortgage of Shively Lodge Hall. This was a very happy occasion. During 1971, the lodge paid off the remainder of our $50 and $100 bonds, becoming debt free. In 1973, the Kentucky State Highway Department asked the lodge for permission to use our parking lot, as they needed a right-of-way for their equipment, during construction of a ramp leading from Dixie Highway to Watterson Expressway. The Lodge approved this after assurances that our parking lot would be repaved and stripped. During Brother Roland Stayton’s District #16 Meeting held in the Lodge Hall in 1974, we had to get permission to use the A&P and Shively Baptist Church’s Parking Lots, since ours was filled with equipment. Later in that same year the Secretary, Brother Rudy Crady asked the District Deputy, Brother Roland Stayton, to go with him to the State Highway. Department to see about purchasing the property behind the Lodge which was owned by the Highway Department. They were reminded that we had allowed them access for their construction needs and when the property went up for sale in1976 our Lodge purchased this lot from the State of Kentucky for our additional parking. In 1978, through the efforts, leadership and hard work of Brother William T. Ashby, PM, and Chairman of the Building Committee, the Lodge entered into a long term lease of a portion of this lot to Holiday Inn for parking which will financially benefit our Lodge for years to come. In 1983 the Lodge built a ramp to our side door so that our members who use walkers and wheelchairs will have easy access into the building at the elevator, where they can up to the Lodge Hall or down to the dining room with ease. The second twenty-five years of Shively Lodge started off with a busy schedule with six to receive their entered apprentice degree. Brother Bill Rader, Past Master 1982, served as President of the Jefferson County Masonic Officers Association and provided the leadership to create and put a Masonic Float in the Pegasus Parade. Another one of our members Brother Bud Tarter installed a new PA System in the lodge hall making it easier for everyone to hear. This year also saw our annual picnic moved to the Masonic Home on Frankford Avenue which is a beautiful location for this type of event. The Pleasure Ridge Park DeMolay Boys moved their meetings to Shively Lodge were they met on the 2nd and 4th Mondays until they turned their charter a few years later. We also saw an increase in our Widows checks to $10.00 which were sent every Christmas. In 1987 we organized a Mock Degree team consisting of the wives of the Officers and members of Shively Lodge to confer their version of the Master Mason Degree. With the assistance of three different Eastern Star Chapters giving us their version of the degree we combined them, with additions of our own, where the ladies enjoyed putting on the degree, first at Shively on Brother Jerry Ashby and Brother Mike Dohn. They had so much fun with it and visitors like it so well, through word of mouth, the ladies were invited to travel, not only in Jefferson County, out in the State for the following three years. In 1989 December, Brother (RL) Rudy Crady and Brother (WT) William T. Brown stepped down as Secretary and Treasurer of Shively Lodge. These two Brothers had never held any other Office in Lodge but were two of the most dedicated men we could have ever had. Brother Crady served for eighteen years and Brother W.T. served for twenty-one years. At that time we though we would never have anyone to fill those shoes. In that same year Brother Gerald Ashby had just finished his term as Master, and was elected in as Treasurer and is still as of this date severing this Office with dedication and pride. Brother Raymond Carman, Jr. PM, was elected as Secretary and with the exception of one and half years is still Secretary. In 1990, under the direction of Brother Charles Embry, we started having a separate night devoted to our widows and we presented them with a widows pin and that same year we also started the program of giving and delivering fruit baskets at Christmas to each of our widow in the Jefferson County area. This lasted until around 2003, when is was combined with Charter Anniversary. March 1, 1992, Shively Lodge lost one of our most dedicated members, Brother Oliver K. Wilding, who was the architect for our lodge building. Also in this year we put a new sign on the back of our building so as to be more visible to the traffic on Dixie Highway and to make us easier to find. On July 25, due to the hard work of our D.D.G.M. District #16, Brother Terry Bowman, PM (Valley 511) was instrumental in putting together a Blue Lodge Day, in which all the Degrees were conferred by Officers and members of all the Lodges of District #16, on different candidates, and we were honored to host this historic event. This event was repeated again on June 5, 1999 when Brother Ray Carman was D.D.G.M. #16, and again on June 24, 2000 under Brother Bethel Ethridge, D.D.G.M. #16, PM, (Lewis #191) and whom passed away that year. Through the years Shively Lodge has remembered that Charity is one of our principle tenets. Each year our Lodge has contributed to our needy members, widows, Rainbow for Girls, Jobs Daughters, DeMolay for Boys, Crusade for Children, Masonic Homes and the St. John Day League. In 1979, during Brother Roy Gribbins year as Master, Shively Lodge furnished all the furniture and equipment needed in a new room at the Infirmary at the Masonic Widows and Orphans Home. This room has a plaque on the outside wall stating that Shively Lodge furnished this room. This year 2010, Shively Lodge made the first of five $1,000.00 payments to sponsor a room at the new Masonic Healthcare Facility on the Masonic Homes grounds at Frankford Avenue. In May 1997 Shively Lodge presented the first of what we hope to be many $1000.00 Scholarships to a graduate of Butler High School. This first one was presented by Brother Stanley Crawley to Miss Stephanie Ballard and to this day we have been fortunate to continue making our total $14,000.00. All district were rearranged by Grand Lodge and Jefferson County Lodges were put into District # 12, #13 and #14. We were put onto District #12: Which are now Mt. Zion #147, St. George #239, Louisville #400, Kilwinning #506, Valley #511, Lewis-Parkland #638, Daylight #760, Shawnee #830, Plumb #862, Sunset #915, Shively #951, Pleasure Ridge Park #959 and River City #966. Through this date Shively Lodge has continued to prosper, maybe not in membership , but having new members to come into Lodge who are willing to learn their work and to do it proficiently.  Shively Lodge has had a wonderful past and we believe the Lodge will have an even greater future. The Lodge has always had dedicated Officers and Members and will ensure its future. Our Present Master and our Charter Master, Brother Stanley Crawley, Jr. 33°, is making plans for the celebration of our Charter Anniversary Dinner in honor of our fifty years, which is to be on October 2, 2010. It is great to pay tribute to Freemasonry. Its amazing, astonishing story is well recorded in the annals of mankind. Masonry has served to make this a better world in which to live. With it roots deeply embedded in antiquity it is one of , if not the world’s largest and most influential Fraternal Orders. It is no secret that many of Masonry’s noblest and beautiful teachings are from both the Old and New Testaments. It is no secret that the Bible holds the central position as the Great Light of Masonry. It is no secret that Masons love and revere the Bible nor is it a secret that Masonry helped to preserve it in the darkest age of the church when infidelity sought to destroy it. The Bible meets Masons with its sacred message at every step of progress in its various degrees. I joined the Masonic Order at the age of 26 and have enjoyed the rights and privileges for almost 62 years. I have had the privilege of being a member of many organizations, but none outside of my Church has meant more to me than Masonry. I owe Masonry a debt I can never repay. I thank God for my Masonic Brethren.  The Grand Master of the Universe has looked upon Shively Lodge No. 951, F.&A.M. with favor and blessed us in the years past and we pray for His continued blessings in the future. God bless each of you. It is good to be a Mason. STANLEY W. CRAWLEY, JR. PM., 33° Historian