HISTORY OF SANDY MASONIC LODGE NO.158 A.F. & A.M.

The old saying is that there is a time for all things. It seems like the time has come for Sandy Lodge to compile a history of Sandy Lodge of Masons. Therefore, at a regular communication of Sandy Lodge held December 18, 1951, a letter was read from the Grand Lodge officers, that all Oregon lodges are requested to write a history of their lodge, being that Estacada LodgeNo.146 of Estacada, Oregon, has already done so by a copy presented to our lodge. On motion it was ordered that Sandy Lodge comply with the request and same was duly carried. On motion it was duly ordered that Ed F. Bruns be appointed to write the history; motion carried.

This is the story of the Masonic Lodge written and arranged by Ed F. Bruns and approved by Charles M. Quicksall and L.T. Gierke.

(1911 - 1920)Sandy Lodge of Masons had its very beginnings in 1911 at Oscar Dahlgren’s pool room where Dahlgren [Minnesota] and the following masons had gathered to play pool: E.F. Grunert, W.A. Proctor [Fairview Lodge No. 92], and Ed F. Bruns [Fairview Lodge No. 92]. A.L. Deaton and Emil Wendland were among the non-Mason present. Brothers Proctor and Bruns were very much encouraged when A.L. Deaton and others present wished to become Masons. (Deaton immediately applied for membership in Gresham Lodge No. 152, where he was raised to the sublime degree Master Mason.) Brothers Deaton, Proctor, Bruns, Grunert and H.S. Eddy then began the almost hopeless task of starting a lodge in Sandy.

Those Brothers, along with Brothers George Waite, Ike Anderson, and Jacob R. Cornog, met again in the Dahlgren pool room to sign a petition asking the Grand Lodge for a lodge in Sandy. Also signing were C.L.Hanson, C.M. Quicksell, and F.M. Morgan. The petition was presented to Estacada Lodge No. 146 on August 5, 1913. With Estacada sponsoring, the Grand Lodge granted permission for a U.D. Lodge at Sandy [No. 158 A.F. & A.M.] The Lodge Charter was granted on June 11, 1914.

The first lodge meeting was held in the Odd Fellows Hall. A.L. Deaton, because of his untiring efforts to organize the lodge, was honored as the first Master of the Sandy Lodge. W.A. Proctor was elected Senior Warden; Ed F. Bruns, Junior Warden; C.D. Purcell, secretary; and Ike Anderson, treasurer.

Among those first applying for membership were F.L. Proctor, M.A Deaton, Herman Wendland, Emil Wendland, Martin Lenertz, W.E. Craswell, W.V. Rogers, J.W. Howard, Lester E. Townsend, and Dr. H. Barendrick. All were initiated and raised to the sublime degree of Master Mason. The receiving of the charter and the addition of new members was hailed with great joy and new courage to make Sandy lodge a success.

Sandy Lodge was chartered during World War I. During that time of financial hardship for many Brothers, Lodge secretaries found it difficult to collect dues. As a result, in 1917 Sandy was unable to pay the Grand Lodge dues. There was a push to surrender the charter and affiliate with Gresham Lodge. Brothers Deaton, Bruns, Quicksall, and Morgan opposed the move and the plan was voted down.

Ed F. Bruns was elected secretary in December of 1918 and initiated a drive to collect all back dues. With his efforts, the lodge was again able to meet all its financial obligations. He was again elected secretary in 1920 and served continually from that time for 36 years.

(1920 - 1930) After the war Sandy Lodge grew quickly (four Master Masons were raised in one eventful night) and in 1923 the Lodge voted forty dollars per year to the secretary. Bruns agreed to accept the salary providing it be placed in a building fund and all surplus funds of the lodge be added to that fund. The stipulation was accepted and the building fund was started. By 1935 the fund balance was $1400.

(1930 - 1950) At a regular meeting in January 1935 the brothers voted to build a lodge hall. The Masonic Temple Association (a 20-year entity with the purpose of building a lodge) was incorporated on March 18, 1935 with the following members: Ivan Barker, Ed F. Bruns, Cecil O. Duke, Lloyd T. Dunn, Henry Eri, R.E. Esson, L.T. Gierke, Robert Gray, E.A. Herz, Errol Reds, J.I. Roberts, and Emil Wendland. Bruns was appointed chairman of the building committee and Roberts the secretary. Duke, Gray, and Herz were appointed to the site committee.

Bruns prepared plans and specifications for a building 36 by 78 feet with a full concrete basement. The upper floor would be used for lodge purposes and the lower floor would serve as a kitchen and dining room. The plans and specification were accepted by the group.

The site committee presented two proposed sites—one from W.A. Proctor located across from the grade school for 750 dollars and one from Zeek Beers across from the Catholic Church for 550 dollars. Both were rejected. Several sites along Highway 26 were offered but were not suitable for a building site.

Bruns offered to donate a site with a 60 foot frontage and 120 foot depth at the intersection Main and the Mt. Hood Loop Highway. This site was unanimously accepted.

A committee was appointed to secure more funds. They sold a number of debenture bonds, the Order of the Eastern Star donated 60 dollars and the building of the Masonic Temple was on its way.

Grand Master Ezra M. Wilson laid the cornerstone on May 9, 1935. He was assisted by other Grand Officers and Sandy citizens including Mayor Charles Sharnkey who was a Catholic.

It will be in order that something of the outstanding Masons be here recorded. Brother Alva Deaton, who may be considered the father of Sandy Lodge and was its first Master, never ceased working for the good of the lodge. He started the Clackamas County Bank and took an active part in the work to incorporate the City of Sandy. Deaton sold his bank interest to W.A. Proctor and moved to Mt. Scott where he lived until his death.

Brother W.A. Proctor was the second Master of Sandy Lodge. He was in the lumber business for many years and owned one of the largest farms in Clackamas County. He was county Commissioner for eight years, served one term in the State Legislature and also served as Mayor of Sandy.

Brother John I. Roberts, a past Master, was noted for his work in the lodge, especially in the building program. He purchased five debenture bonds, one of which he donated to the lodge. He was chief engineer for the building committee and served without pay. He was also a member of the Sandy Pioneer Society in which he served as president and secretary.

Brother Ed F. Bruns was Master in the year of 1918 and in the December election he was elected secretary and served in that capacity for 36 years. A native of Sandy, he served 20 years on the High School board and 12 years on the grade school board. He was instrumental in getting the City of Sandy incorporated and in honor of his efforts was elected the first Mayor of Sandy. He helped organize the Sandy Pioneer Association and served as president for a number of years. In 1953, Ed and Augusta Bruns were honored and crowned King and Queen of the Sandy Pioneer Society. On October 20, 1956, Brother Bruns received his 59 year jewel from Grand Lodge and became the first in the lodge to receive such a jewel.

Brother Lewis T. Gleke, who was initiated in the Alaskan Territory in the lodge nearer the North Pole than any lodge in the world and served as its Master. Gleke donated considerable work on the Temple and with his team hauled anything needed for the construction of the building.

Bruns, as superintendent of building promised that he would donate his time free of charge providing Masons would help every day with not less than six men. This worked out fine.

The dedication of the Masonic Temple took place September 7, 1935 with the following Grand Officers present: H. Wayne Standard, Master; Frank Peters, Deputy Grand Master; Carl G. Patterson, Senior Grand Warden; Franklin C. Howell, Junior Grand Warden; Edward Pinney, Grand Treasurer; D. Rufus Chenney, Grand Secretary; and a host of Masons from Gresham, Troutdale, Estacada, and Portland.

This dedication took place in a closed session followed by a banquet arranged by the Order of the Eastern Star. Then, by special dispensation from the Grand Lodge, permission was granted to move into the new Temple.

(1950 - )On December 3, 1952 the Temple Association, by resolution, began the process of turning over all its property, assets and liabilities to the newly incorporated Sandy Lodge No. 158 AF & AM Inc. Assets were appraised at 6886 dollars and liabilities at 175 dollars.