SOUTH CAROLINA COMMANDERY, No. 1,
Charleston, S. C.
ESTABLISHED IN 1780
A Historical Sketch
South Carolina Commandery,
No. 1, K. T.
and the appendant orders,
established in 1780,
Located at Charleston, S. C.
AND THE EARLY INSTRUCTION OF THE ORDER IN
Theo. A. W. Melchers,
P. Em. Commander.
CONTAING ALSO AN ACCOUNT OF THE CENTENNIAL
CELEBRATION IN 1880, AND THE REVISED
BY-LAWS OF THE COMMANDERY,
Em. Sir Samuel S. Buist,
Em. Sir Theo. A. W. Melchers,
Sir William Korber,
CHARLESTON, S. C.
WALKER, EVANS, & COGSWELL CO., PRINTERS
3 BROAD STREET.
SOUTH CAROLINA COMMANDERY No. 1, K. T., is beyond doubt the oldest Commandery in the United States, as appears from an old seal which was recovered through the instrumentality of Grand Master Dean, and which is now preserved in the Archives of the Grand Encampment of the United States. This seal is of silver, and upon it are the skull and cross bones, surmounted with the cross. “In hoe signo vinces,” and Memento Mori” above, and S. C. Encampment No. 1, 1780, below.
The Commandery is also in possession of an original diploma, (which is deposited in the Archives of the Grand Encampment of the United States for safekeeping), issued on the first day of August, 1783, the earliest Templar diploma or document of which we have any accurate knowledge. This document beats the impression of the seal referred to by Sir knight Theodore S. Gourdin, Em. Commander of South Carolina Commandery No. 1, in his lecture delivered in Charleston, S. C., March 23rd, 1855, a copy of which is preserved in the Archives of the Commandery. It has upon it a star of seven points, with the ineffable name in the center, and the motto, “Memento Mori” the arch on two pillars, and the “All seeing eye” on the Keystone, the sun beneath the arch, and “Holiness to the Lord” for the motto; the cross and brazen serpent erected on the bridge, “Jesus Salvator Hominis” for the motto; on the fourth circle is the skull and cross bones, surmounted with the cross, “in hoe signo vinces.” The reference of the last three devices is evidently to the Royal Arch, the red cross and the Templar degrees, while the first is the symbol of the Lodge of Perfection, and hence they show the connection of the Order of Templary in this State at that time with the ancient and accepted rite. This diploma was issued to Brother Sir Henry Beaumont, and is of such an interesting and valuable character, that we here reproduce its wording:
We, the High Priest, Captain Commandant of the Red Cross, and Captain General of the most Holy Invincible Order of Knights Templars of St. Andrews Lodge No. 1, Ancient Masons, held in Charleston, South Carolina, under charter from the Grand Lodge of the Southern District of North America, do hereby certify that our trusty and well-beloved brother, Sir Henry Beaumont, had passed the Chair, been raised to the sublime degrees of an Excellent, Super Excellent, Royal Arch Mason, Knight of the Red Cross, and a Knight of the most Holy, Invincible, and Magnanimous Order of Knights Templars, Knights Hospitallers, Knights of Rhodes, and of Malta, which several Orders are above delineated; and he having conducted himself like a true and faithful brother, we affectionaly recommend him to all the Fraternity of Ancient Masons around the globe wherever assembled.
Given under our hands, and seal of our Lodge, this first day of August, five thousand seven hundred and eighty three, and of Malta 3517.
Geo. Carter, Capt. Gen’l.
Thos. Pashley, 1st King.
Wm. Nisbett, 2nd King.
Rd. Mason Recorder.
It will be seen that this diploma was issued by the Invincible Order of Knights Templar of St. Andrew’s Lodge No. 1, Ancient Masons, held in Charleston, S. C., under charter from the Grand Lodge of the Southern District of North America.
This Lodge was established in the year 1770, at Pensacola, West Florida, by James Grant, then Governor of East Florida; who was, in 1768, appointed at the Grand Lodge of Scotland as Provincial Grand Master of the Southern District of North America, which embraced East and West Florida.
St. Andrew’s Lodge appeared to have worked at Pensacola until about the close of the Revolution, when, as Florida again became a Spanish Province, Pensacola was deserted by many of its inhabitants, who were British subjects, they removing to Charleston, S. C., and with them, St. Andrew’s Lodge was also removed.
At a Lodge of Emergency of the Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania, Free and Accepted Masons, July 8th, 1783, a memorial of St. Andrew’s Lodge No. 1, late of West Florida, and now (then) of Charleston, S. C., was presented, at a subsequent meeting, which was held July 12th, 1783, on motion, it was ordered that the Secretary prepare and draw a warrant for the brethren of St. Andrew’s Lodge No. 1, to be No. 40, which warrant should be transmitted to Brother Weyman, Master of Lodge No. 38, to be by him delivered to the Masonic and members of St. Andrew’s Lodge No. 1, provided that the Master and members of this Lodge be found to be of the ancient and honorable fraternity, and accept to be under this jurisdiction. The records show that this Lodge, No. 40, was represented at subsequent meetings of the Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania, during the years 1783-1788.
The first seal of the Commandery with Lodge No. 40 at the bottom was of the same description as the fourth design at the head of the diploma. The seal with South Carolina Encampment No. 1, 1780 at the bottom, with same design as formerly, was probably adopted after the Lodge became connected with the ancient York Grand Lodge of South Carolina, instead of Pennsylvania; or more likely when they severed their connection with Lodge 40, and acknowledged and came under the jurisdiction of the General Grand Encampment of the United States, as the following copies of documents preserved in the Archives of this Commandery, would indicate, viz:
Sir J. C. Winter, G. C. Pt.
Sir F. S. Curtis, Gen’l.
Sir Richard Maynard, C. G.
Sir David Ross,
Sir Caleb Duhadway,
Sir Joseph Cole,
Sir John McAnally,
Sir Jacob Mann,
Sir Moses Holbrook,
Sir Joseph Mc Cosh.
An Encampment was opened in short form; the members of said Encampment did severally sign a paper, purporting to be a desire and authority to reopen said Encampment, in conformity with the Constitution of said General Grand Encampment. The oath of allegiance was then duly administered to all Sir Knights present, Extract from the minutes of the said meeting on the 27th August, 1823.
Witness our hands and seal of the Encampment.
J. C. Winter, Joseph McCosh,
G. C. Pt. Recorder Pt.
We the subscribers, Knights of the Red Cross, Knights Templar and of Malta, having taken the necessary obligation, do severally promise to conform to and abide by the Constitution, Laws and Edicts of the General Grand Encampment of the United States.
Charleston, S. C., 27th August, 1823.
F. S. Curtis.
C. B. Duhadway.
John R. Rogers.
Sworn to and signed in open Encampment.
Witness our hands and seal of said Encampment.
J. C. Winter, Joseph McCosh,
G. C. Pt. Recorder Pt.
Both of these documents bear the seal of the Encampment, with Lodge No. 40 at the bottom, which shows that this seal was in use as the seal of the Encampment from the first day of August, 1783, where it appears on the diploma heretofore mentioned, until the twenty-seventh of August, 1823, where it appears for the last time.
It also proves that it was the distinct seal of the Encampment, and not merely that of St. Andrew’s Lodge No. 40, for the design: a skull and cross bones surmounted by a cross, and the motto: “In hoe signo vinces” are strictly those of Knights Templar, and would not have been adopted by a Lodge of Ancient Scottish Rite, nor by a Lodge of Ancient York Masons.
The Commandery is also in possession of a copy of the original circular, issued by them, September 3rd, 1823, to the several Grand Encampments of the United States; it informs them that the Encampment of Knights Templar and the appendant Orders, established in this City in 1780, has been this day regularly acknowledged, and come under the jurisdiction of the General Grand Encampment of the United States, and in behalf of the Encampment craves an interchange of fraternal and social intercourse between the respective members, and with this circular is given an impression of the old seal; being signed by Joseph McCosh, Recorder; M. Holbrook, M. D., G. Comd.; Th. W. Curtis, Gen’l; David Ross, Capt. Gen. This seal is the same as that which we find on the diploma, issued by the “Most Holy and Invincible Order of Knights of St. Andrew’s Lodge No. 1, to Brother Sir Henry Beaumont, on the 1st day of August, 1783, with the exception Lodge No. 40 being replaced by So. Ca. Enc. No. 1, 1780.
(WEBMASTER'S NOTE: Image not available, KT est 1780)
Having renounced their allegiance to Lodge No. 40 and acknowledged and come under the jurisdiction of the General grand Encampment of the United States, made this change necessary.
This diploma, long believed to be spurious, is now thoroughly proved and accepted as genuine. The discrepancies between the numbers one and forty, for a long time irreconcilable, for, and the existence of the body, Grand Lodge of the Southern District of North America proven, and there can no longer be a doubt that there was an Encampment of Knights Templar and appendant Orders in Charleston, S. C., as early as 1783, if not 1780, as claimed for it from the seal long lost, now found.
With the above facts, and the authority of Brothers Sidney Hayden, Mackey, Theodore S. Gourdin, Wilmot G. DeSaussure, Grand Master Dean, and others before us, it would clearly prove that South Carolina Encampment No. 1, at Charleston, S. C., became an independent and distinct Encampment several years prior to that of Maryland Encampment No. 1, at Baltimore, or any other Encampment in the United States of North America.
These higher degrees in those times were governed by no statue in Masonry, but by a custom by which Master Lodges conferred any higher degrees of which they had knowledge on worthy Master Masons, and there can be no doubt that Sir James Grant, Grand Master of the Southern District of North America, and other prominent Masons in Florida, were in possession of the Ritual of the Red Cross, Knights Templar, Knights of Malta and appendant orders; and when, in the year 1770, St. Andrew’s Lodge No. 1, was established at Pensacola, these Orders were conferred in that Lodge until 1780, when an Encampment distinct from, but deriving its authority from, and working under the Charter of St. Andrew’s Lodge No. 1, was formed, and a seal adopted, bearing the device and motto of the Order of the Temple.
In New England the knowledge of Masonic Templarism appears to have been introduced by British soldiers, for records show that on October 1st, 1768, several regiments of British soldiers arrived in Boston. Among them were the 14th Regiment (Irish), in which Army Lodge No. 58 was held, and the 29th Regiment (Irish) in which Army Lodge No. 322 was held. In the second week of November, 1768, the 64th Regiment (Irish), in which was held Army Lodge No. 106, also arrived. These Army Lodges, it appears brought to Boston knowledge of the Order of the Temple.
They readily affiliated, or held Masonic intercourse, with St. Andrew’s Lodge of Boston, which received its charter from Scotland, and worked under the “Ancient” system, as these Army Lodges did. Nearly a year after the arrival of the British troops, on August 28th, 1769, a Royal Arch Lodge was formed, and worked during the years of its existence under the supposed authority of the charter of the Lodge of St. Andrew. The record of its first meeting which is preserved, show that ten Brothers were then present, of whom sic were soldiers, and four were members of St. Andrew’s Lodge. British soldiers were chosen as the first three officers of the Lodge, which seems t imply that soldiers were its moving spirits, and were best enabled to do the work. William Davis, a Past Master, and member of Army Lodge No. 58, received four steps, viz: “that of Excellent, Super-Excellent, Royal Arch, and Knight Templar.” (The knowledge of the Orders of the Red Cross, Knight of Malta and appendant orders were apparently not in possession of above parties.) This Royal Arch Lodge became later, in 1797, St. Andrew’s Chapter. It appears that from August 28th, 1769, until 1794, the Order of Knights Templar was worked in the Royal Arch Lodge, and from 1794, or later, until 1802, the Orders were worked without chartered authority or organized form, But on March 12th, 1802, the Knights Templar of Boston did organize and establish a body, separate from Lodge and Chapter, “Boston Encampment of Knights of the Red Cross,” which continued until March 15th, 1806.
On December 21st, 1805, an Encampment of Knights Templar and Knights of Malta was organized in Boston, which was virtually a succession or continuation of Boston Encampment of Knights of Red Cross.
The records of St. John’s Encampment of Providence, under date of August 23rd, 1802, show that “the Knights of the most noble and magnanimous Order of the Red Cross and of Malta, and the Order of St. John’s of Jerusalem, residing in the town of Providence, at a previous assembly, determined that it is proper and expedient for the preservation and promotion of the honor and dignity of the Order of Knighthood, that an Encampment should be formed and established in said town, assembled at Mason’s Hall for that purpose, at seven o’clock P. M.
The organization of an Encampment was effected that evening.
This clearly proves that both Boston Encampment and St. John’s Encampment of Providence, R. I., were established in the year 1802, twenty-two years later than South Carolina Encampment No. 1 of Charleston, S. C.
Enoch T. Carson, 33rd Degree Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite, who was loath to acknowledge the seniority of South Carolina Commandery, writes in a letter dated 1883: “The authenticity of this diploma once established, Pennsylvania and Massachusetts are both ante-dated, and the received tradition that Webb was the founder of our Red Cross grade, vanishes before the burning rays of the sun of truth. Such documents are most valuable.”
Maryland Commandery No. 1, of Baltimore, which claims to be the oldest existing organization of Knights Templar in this country, fails to advance a single fact which would ante-date the existence of that body, 1790, ten years later than South Carolina Commandery No. 1, if that early; and the only document on which they base the claim that their organization was established as early as 1790, is a letter found in the Archives of the Grand Encampment of Pennsylvania, which was organized in 1814, and became extinct in 1824.
This letter is as follows, viz:
“Geo. A. Baker, Esq.
Agreeable to a resolution entered into, at a meeting of our Encampment held this evening, April 20, 1814, at St. John’s Lodge Room, I have the honor to enclose to you ten dollars, five of which is to satisfy the claim of the Grand Encampment for a charter of recognition, and the balance to go into a fund to provide for the needful expenses of said Grand Encampment hereafter. I am induced to state that this Encampment insists in receiving its number and rank, according to the date of its institution, the complete organization of which took place in the year 1790.
You will please fill out the warrant as follows: Phillip T. Eckel, Grand Master; Peter Ganlt, Generalalissimo; Adam Denmead, Captain General. I enclose you a copy of our certificate, with a list of members.
I have the honor to be with respects,
Your obedient servant,
On this letter Sir Edward T. Schultz, Past Grand Commander of Maryland, in a paper entitled: “Which is the oldest Commandery of Knights Templar in the United States,” read before Maryland Commandery No. 1, K. T., Friday evening, November 22nd, 1889, endeavors to establish that Maryland Commandery No. 1 is entitled to priority of date.
He advances no other theory or evidence, puts his own paraphrase on this letter, and claims to have in his possession three diplomas, issued by Encampment No. 1 in the years 1802, 1812, and 1814 respectively.
In this paper Fraters Schultz devotes a great deal of space and time to South Carolina Commandery No. 1, trying to persuade himself and the Fraters of Maryland Commandery that South Carolina Commandery No. 1 is not entitled to the seniority, but endeavors to claim that honor for themselves.
Frater Schultz admits that Colonial Governor James Grant, of East Florida, was appointed by the Grand Master of Scotland in 1768, Provincial Grand Master of the Southern District of North America, and that he (Grant), about the year 1770, established St. Andrew’s Lodge No. 1 at Pensacola, which Lodge removed to Charleston, S. C., in 1782-1783, and in July, 1783, applied to the Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania for a charter, and became Lodge No. 40, and that the Orders of Knight Templars, Knights of Malta and appendant Orders were conferred by South Carolina Encampment under that Lodge warrant; but as the records of the Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania establish the fact that “Lodge No. 40” was warranted July 12th, 1783, it was therefore impossible that South Carolina Encampment could have been held under warrant of Blue Lodge, 40, as early as 1780.
Brother Schultz seems to have forgotten that the records of that same grand Lodge also establish the fact that Lodge No. 40 was a continuation of St. Andrew’s Lodge No. 1, and the diploma preserved in the Archives of the Grand Encampment of the United States proves beyond doubt that the Orders were conferred sanction of warrant of St. Andrew’s Lodge No. 1, before that Lodge became No. 40. This position taken by Brother Schultz is, therefore, too preposterous to be entertained.
Speaking of this diploma, Brother Schultz says: “This old and interesting diploma of course establishes the fact that the Orders of Knighthood were conferred under the sanction of a Lodge warranted in the city of Charleston as early as 1783.”
That on diligent search being made in the Archives, it clearly appears that this Encampment was in full operation under the sanction of the warrant of Blue Lodge No. 40, upwards of thirty years ago, and continued in operation many years subsequent, and has, time out of mind, caused to be made and used a common seal.
In forwarding the petition for recognition to the General Grand Encampment, it was necessary only to establish the fact that South Carolina Encampment was in existence prior to 1816, the date of the organization of the G. G. E. of the U. S., and there was no occasion to give the exact date if its organization.
In attempting to strengthen his theory, Brother Schulz quotes from a letter claimed to be written by Hammer, from Charleston, S. C., under the date of August 23rd, 1809, in which is said that he, Hammer, had been engaged in Masonic proceedings in America for more than fifteen years. That he was then one of the Inspectors of the Grand Lodge of South Carolina, High Priest of the Carolina Chapter, and secretary of an Encampment of which he was the means of creating.
Josiah W. Drummond, in his History of Royal Arch Masons in the United States, informs us that John Hammer came to Albany, N. Y., from England, in 1793, bearing a certificate that he was well skilled in the ancient work and lectures, and that he (Hammer) remained in this country until 1800, and then returned to England. During his stay in America, we find Hammer in 1796, when Temple Lodge at Albany was chartered, with Hammer as Master. On February 4th, 1797, nine R\A\Masons met, and Hammer presented the subject of opening a Royal Arch Chapter, which was done, and Comp. Webb elected High Priest. The following week the Chapter met, a Lodge of Most Excellent Masters was opened by Webb, and the degrees conferred on several candidates, including Hammer. On September 27th, 1797, we find Hammer acting as Senior Warden in a Mark Master Lodge. On October 11th, 1797, Temple Chapter appointed Webb, Hammer and another as a committee to correspond with the different Chapters. In January, 1798, Webb and Hammer presided, and conferred the Most Excellent Master’s Degree at Hartford. On January 30th, 1799, Hammer was appointed to superintend the different Chapters and Mark Lodges in the State of New York, to establish a uniform mode of working and lecturing, according to the direction of the Grand Officers. It will therefore be seen that Hammer’s time was occupied in the New England States from the time of his arrival at Albany in 1793, to his return to England in 1800, and could, therefore, not have been the means of creating South Carolina Encampment No.1 in 1793, as Brother Schultz would have it, when he quotes: “If this Encampment was the one created by Hammer, which is quite probable, as there is no mention of any other Encampment in South Carolina prior to 1823, it could not have been created earlier than 1793, for Hammer did not come to this country until about that year.”
In this Brother Schultz is again mistaken; for records show that there were in existence about that time besides South Carolina Encampment No. 1, Columbia Encampment No. 2, and Lafayette Encampment No. 3, of Georgetown, S. C. If Hammer was instrumental in creating an Encampment in South Carolina, as the alleged letter would indicate, it must have been Columbia Encampment No. 2, or Lafayette Encampment No. 3, and on his second visit to this country, after the year 1800. (Beaufort Encampment No. 4 received its charter in 1826.)
During his investigation into the origin of Maryland Encampment No. 1, Brother Schultz was fortunate in obtaining the document heretofore mentioned, which would establish the date of its organization to be 1790; but he did not succeed in obtaining any authentic information in regard to the source whence it emanated, and consequently has nothing but theories to offer in regard to that important subject.
The theory that Maryland Encampment No.1 was an independent organization prior to that of South Carolina Encampment No. 1, is untenable, for the discovery of the diploma of 1802, while recognizing the Encampment of Knights Templar, shows upon its face that it was connected with a Lodge and worked under a Lodge warrant.
Brother Schultz puts in evidence the letter of Sir Archibald Dobbin, Recorder of Encampment No. 1 of Baltimore, to sustain the claim to priority advanced by the Sir Knights of Maryland Commandery, in which they claim that the organization of Encampment no. 1 of Maryland took place in 1790. The diploma dated 1802, in Brother Schultz’s possession, above mentioned, cannot be brought in evidence, as it is dated twelve years later than the date they claim for their organization.
If this “only evidence produced by Brother Schultz to establish the date 1790 for the formation of their Commandery, and would in a legal point of view be entirely valueless, and would not be sustained by any Court of Law, is not for us to decide.
Be it far from Sir Knights of South Carolina Commandery No. 1 to desire to take anything from the Fraters of Maryland Commandery No. 1, which they may justly and with propriety claim in their own behalf, and we are ready to concede to them that their organization dates from 1790, but this date does not entitle them to the rank of Premier Commandery of the United States, for this rank belongs to South Carolina Commandery No.1, as has been shown in these pages, and the truth of history will prevail.
There is no need to apply to a Court of Law, as Brother Schultz puts it, for the highest Templar authority in the United States, Grand Master Benjamin Dean, to whom Templarism is greatly indebted for his researches in bringing to light some most important facts in connection with its early history, at the Grand Encampment of the United States, at its triennial, August, 1883, has accorded to South Carolina Commandery no. 1, of Charleston, S. C., the honor of being the oldest existing Body of Knights Templar in this country.
And we are satisfied that after these historic facts have come to the knowledge of our Fraters of Maryland Commandery No. 1, they will courteously and magnanimously concede this honor to whom it justly belongs.
It appears that a Grand Encampment was established in South Carolina as early as 1826, for the records of the General Grand Encampment of the United States, held in 1826, the committee reported, with approval, that since the preceding conclave, the General Grand Officers had established a Grand Encampment in South Carolina.
The Grand Encampment of South Carolina was represented in the conclaves of the General Grand Encampment of the United States as follows, viz:
1826 at New York, by Sir John Baker, proxy for Sir Moses Holbrook, G. M., by Sir William H. Jones, proxy for Sir William E. Lathrop, Captain General
1829 at New York, by Sir James Eyland, G. M., by Sir James Eyland, proxy for Sir Alexander McDonald, D. G. M.
1844 at New Haven, Conn., by Sir Albert Case, G. M.
This is the last mention found in these records of the Grand Encampment of South Carolina.
The record book of South Carolina Encampment shows the following entry:
Sir J. W. Rouse (Recorder) handed me over the books and papers, all for me to deliver up to this Encampment, some time in 1832, with a letter of resignation, and at the same time the books and papers of Grand Encampment of South Carolina. All were flooded when Sir John May’s workshop was burned. I received the remains in January, 1840.
(Signed) Moses Holbrook,
Past Grand Commander and Past G. M.
Of Grand Encampment of S. C.
On March 16th, 1825, the Sir Knights of South Carolina Encampment No. 1, and Lafayette Encampment No. 3, of Georgetown, S. C., visited officially the illustrious Sir Knights the Marquise de Lafayette, at his quarters, St. Andrew’s hall, Broad Street, Charleston, S. C.
The visiting Sir Knights were introduced to the Illustrious Sir Knight, the Marquise de Lafayette, by Brother Cheever Felech, United States Navy. Sir Knight C. C. Sebring, on behalf of South Carolina Encampment No. 1, and Sir Knight James Coggle shall, on behalf of Lafayette Encampment No. 3, addressed the marquise deLafayette, welcoming him to South Carolina.
On 27th day of December, 1841, St. john’s Day, the Sir Knights of South Carolina Encampment No. 1, acted as an escort to the R. W. Grand Lodge A. F. M. of South Carolina, and on the corresponding day in 1854 they acted as an escort to the R. W. Grand Lodge, A. F. M., of South Carolina, on the occasion of the centennial anniversary.
May 11th, 1843, the charter having been destroyed by fire, a dispensation was issued by Deputy Grand Master Sir Joseph K. Stapleton, authorizing the Encampment to continue its labors, until the conclave of the General Grand Encampment, held in September, 1844, when a charter was issued in lieu of the one destroyed.
At a regular conclave held March 23rd, 1855, Sir Theodore S. Gourdin, Grand Commander (by previous request) delivered a very interesting and instructive address, entitled: “An Historical Sketch of the Order of Knights Templar,” which was prepared with much skill and taste, and showed assiduous labor and research.
At the close of the address it was resolved to have it published, and then the members, together with a large number of Master Masons, who were present by invitation, adjourned to a banquet.
A printed copy of this address is in the record book of the Commandery.
The Encampment continued in active operation until the conclave of October 24th, 1862, when the city being shelled by the enemy, their place of meeting, Masonic Hall, had become unsafe, and many Sir Knights having taken up arms to defend their homes and firesides, it was
Resolved unanimously, “That owing to the very unsettled state of the times, out future meetings be held at the call of the Eminent Commander.”
The next conclave was held at the close of the War between the States, on December 22nd, 1865, when the Commandery was reorganized, with Sir Albert G. Mackey as Eminent Commander, and continued active until June 24th, 1866. Conclaves were held in May and June, 1868, when several Knights were created.
It was inactive again until February 15th, 1870, when the Commandery was reorganized under a warrant from M. E. Sir Knight William Jewell Gardner, Grand Master of the Grand Encampment of the United States, who appointed Sir Knight Henry Buist as his proxy to preside, and install the officers then elected, who were:
Sir Robert S. Burns, Eminet Commander.
Sir Ziba B. Oakes, Generalissimo.
Sir Caleb Froneberger, Captain General.
Sir Isaac W. Angel, Prelate.
Sir Alexander Lindstrom, Senior Warden.
Sir Edwin S. Jennison, Junior Warden.
Sir Hy. H. Muller, Treasurer.
Sir William A. Wilson, Recorder.
Since then the Commandery has continued to flourish.
On the 29th December, 1880, South Carolina Commandery no. 1 celebrated its centennial anniversary.
The Commanderies invited to participate were: Columbia No. 2, of Columbia, S. C.; Georgia No. 1, of Augusta, Ga.; and Palestine No. 7 of Savannah, Ga. The Commanderies paraded despite the inclemency of the weather. The banquet in the evening at the Charleston Hotel was one of the most brilliant affairs ever held south of Mason and Dixon’s Line.
A full report of the celebration is hereto attached.
In 1853 at the conclave of the Grand Encampment of the United States held at Lexington, Ky., South Carolina Encampment was represented by Sir Albert G. Mackey, proxy for the Grand Commander.
1856 at Hartford, Conn., by Sir Theodore S. Gourdin, Grand Commander; Sir Albert G. Mackey, proxy for Generalissimo; and Sir Henry Buist, proxy for Captain General.
1859 at Chicago, Ill., by Sir Theodore S. Gourdin, Eminent Commander.
!871 at Baltimore, by Sir Robert S. Burns, Eminent Commander.
1874 at New Orleans, La., by Sir Augustine t. Smythe, Eminent Commander.
1877 at Cleveland, O., by Sir Augustine T. Smythe, proxy for Eminent Commander and Generalissimo; and Sir Edwin S. Jennison, Captain General.
1880 at Chicago, Ill., by Sir Edwin S. Jennison, Eminent Commander; Sir William M. Bird, P. E. C., proxy for generalissimo; and Sir Robert m. Wallace, Captain General.
1883 at San Francisco, Cal., by Sir Robert M. Wallace, Generalissimo, and as proxy for Eminent Commander; and Sir I. W. Angel, Captain General.
In 1886 when the Commandery was preparing to attend the conclave of the Grand Encampment of the United States, at St. Louis, Mo., their city was visited by that terrible earthquake which devastated the homes of the Sir knights, their asylum and their city, which frustrated their plans, and a communication excusing the Commandery for non-attendance was forwarded by E. Commander Melchers, which was read by the Grand Recorder, and on motion, referred to the Committee on Finance.
We find the following in the Proceeding of the Grand Encampment of the United States, to wit:
St. Louis, Sept. 23rd, 1886.
To the Grand Encampment of the United States:
The Finance Committee to whom was referred the communication of Sir Theo. A. W. Melchers, Eminent Commander of South Carolina Commandery No. 1, of Charleston, S. C., giving reasons for non-attendance at this Grand Conclave, and asking to be excused, beg leave to report:
The terrible calamity that visited the city of Charleston, August 31th, 1886, and the almost universal distress to the inhabitants resulting there from, afford ample excuses for the absence of our Charleston Fraters at this conclave.
The dreadful character of the calamity that has befallen them, the immense destruction of life and property, the recurrence of the earthquake, the great uncertainty of the future, and consequent anxiety for personal safety, all conspire to elicit our most since sympathy, and earnest to the Supreme Ruler for His protecting care over our Fraters, those dear to them, and the entire community.
We ask the adoption of the following resolutions:
Resolved, That this Grand Encampment, representing a constituency of 70,000 Templars in the United States, tender to the Sir Knights of Charleston, their Em. Commander, Dr. C. H. Mallett, issued an appeal to the Masonic Knights Templar of the United States, in behalf of the pestilence stricken and destitute of that city. On the very next day, September 14th, South Carolina Commandery wired to C. H. Mallett, Em. Commander: “If needed, draw on our Treasurer, A. Lindstrom, for one hundred dollars.
Signed, Theo. Melchers, Em. C.”
Under date of October 4th, 1888, a letter to Sir Knight Lindstrom, Treasurer, reads. . . . .
Please accept our grateful acknowledgment for the same, together with the assurance that you and those contributing became direct agents in alleviating suffering and distress, and are dispensing that Knightly charity which evolves from the hearts of all true Sir Knights.
Fraternally and courteously,
Henry S. Edy, Generalissimo,
Treas. K. T. Relief Corps.
1889. Though still suffering from the effects of that terrible earthquake, South Carolina Commandery No. 1 as a body attended the conclave of the Grand Encampment of the United States, at Washington, D. C., and participated in the parade, under command of its then Eminent Commander, Sir Knight Theo. A. W. Melchers, and as proxy for Generalissimo; and John McElree, Captain General.
In 1892 the Commandery made a pilgrimage to the Rocky Mountains, to attend the 25th Triennial Conclave of the Grand Encampment of the United States at Denver, Colorado, and took part in the grand parade, Sir Knight C. F. Panknin, Eminent Commander; Sir Knight S. S. Buist, proxy for Generalissimo; Sir Knight A. S. Thomas, Captain General.
1895. The Commandery, with Sir Knight James Ackerman as Eminent Commander; Sir Knight Alex. S. Thomas, as Generalissimo; and Sir Knight Samuel S. Buist, Captain General, made a pilgrimage to Boston, Mass., to attend the conclave of the Grand Encampment of Knights Templar of the United States. South Carolina No. 1, K. T., was received on their arrival at the station by Boston Commandery, with a band of music playing, and escorted to their quarters on Columbus Avenue.
The following day the Commandery participated in the grand parade. During the sojourn of the Sir Knights of South Carolina Commandery in Boston, they were the recipients of many courtesies and attentions at the hands of the Sir Knights of Boston Commandery and their ladies.
In 1898, at Pittsburgh, Pa., South Carolina Commandery was represented at the conclave of the Grand Encampment of the United States by Sir S. S. Buist, Eminent Commander; Sir Edw. Anderson, Generalissimo; Sir S. S. Buist, proxy for Captain General.
In 1882 South Carolina Commandery No. 1, K. T., made a pilgrimage to Savannah, Ga., by invitation of Palestine Commandery No. 7, of that city, to participate in the escort tendered to the Grand Commandery of Georgia.
May, 1887, by invitation of Cour de Leon Commandery No. 4, the Commandery attended the conclave of the Grand Commandery of the State of Georgia, in Atlanta, Ga.
In May, 1893, a pilgrimage was made by South Carolina Commandery No. 1, K. T., on a special invitation from Georgia Commandery No. 1, of Augusta, Ga., to that city, on the occasion of the meeting of the Grand Encampment of the State of Georgia.
On Ascension Day, May 22nd, 1884, South Carolina Commandery No. 1, held public religious services at the Huguenot Church, Sir Knight C. S. Vedder, D. D., Prelate, officiating. The sermon was printed by request, and a copy preserved in the Archives of the Commandery.
In 1887, Ascension Day, devotional services, preceded by a parade of the Commandery, were held at St. Matthew’s Lutheran Church, King Street, Sir Knight C. S. Vedder, D. D., Prelate, delivering the address. On this occasion this large edifice was filled to its utmost capacity.
On May 9th, 1888, devotional services were held commemorative of Ascension Day, at the Citadel Square Baptist Church, on Meeting Street. The devotional services were conducted by Sir Knight Rev. C. E. Chichester, Prelate, assisted by Sir Rev. Dr. C. S. Vadder, after which an appropriate address was delivered by Sir Knight Rev. Dr. J. W. Ford. Notwithstanding the inclemency of the weather, this large church was well filled. The services were preceded by a parade of the Commandery. In the evening of Wednesday, May 9th, 1888, a reception for ladies was held at Masonic Hall.
In 1860 a Past Commander’s Jewel was presented to Eminent Sir Theodore S. Gourdin, as a token of the esteem in which hew as held by his Fraters of South Carolina Commandery.
On December 27th, 1881, a testimonial, consisting of a silver service, was presented to Eminent Sir Edwin S. Jennison, in token of his untiring zeal as Eminent Commander.
May 23rd, 1884, a Past Eminent Commander’s Jewel was presented to Sir John Davis, in acknowledgement of his faithful services as Eminent Commander.
March 25th, 1898, a Jewel was presented to Eminent Sir Alexander Lindstrom, in acknowledgment of his zealous services as treasurer for over twenty years.
On October 25th, 1895, a committee was appointed to prepare a design for a member’s badge, and the design of the present badge was adopted.
(WEBMASTER'S NOTE: SC SEAL KT NOT AVAILABLE)
(Note, In the year 1856 the titles of all the Templar Bodies were changed to Commandery, the General Encampment alone retaining the title “Encampment,” omitting the word General.)
A full account of the Centennial Celebration of South Carolina Commandery No. 1, K. T., held on December 29th, 1880.
The following committee was appointed, who were authorized to make all the necessary arrangements for the celebration:
Sir Edwin S. Jennison, E. C., Chairman.
Sir Wilmot G. DeSaussure, P. E. C.
Sir William M. Bird, P. E. C.
Sir Robert M. Wallace, Captain General.
Sir Theodore A. W. Melchers.
The Commanderies invited to participate in the celebration were:
Columbia No. 2, of Columbia, S. C.
Georgia No. 1, of Augusta.
Palestine No. 7, of Savannah, Ga.
Georgia No. 1, and Palestine No. 7, accepted the invitation.
The committee appointed for their reception, were:
For Georgia Commandery No.1, Sir Robert M. Wallace, Sir William E. Milligan, Sir William B. Bischoff.
For Palestine Commandery No. 7, Sir William M. Bird, Sir Joseph H. Anderson, Sir Joseph W. Delano.
The Sir Knights and their ladies on arrival, were received with Knightly honors; Palestine Commandery being accompanied by the choir of St. John’s Episcopal Church, and escorted to their quarters at the Charleston Hotel.
The following roster of the visiting Commanderies, also that of South Carolina Commandery No. 1, at this date:
SOUTH CAROLINA COMMANDERY No. 1.
Sir Edwin S. Jennison, Eminent Commander.
Sir John Davis, Generalissimo.
Sir Robert M. Wallace, Captain General.
Sir Joseph H. Anderson, Prelate.
Sir Isaac W. Angel, Senior Warden.
Sir Alexander Lindstrom, Treasurer.
Sir N. K. Reed, Recorder.
Sir J. W. Smith, Standard Bearer.
Sir James C. Bonsall, Warder.
Sir Ludwig F. Meyer, Sentinel.
PAST EMINENT COMMANDERS.
Sir John Honour.
Sir Albert G. Mackey.
Sir Augustine T. Smythe.
Sir Alexander Lindstrom.
Sir William M. Bird.
Sir Wilmot G. DeSaussure.
Sir Andrew Anderson.
Sir Rufus C. Barkley.
Sir William B. Bischoff.
Sir Henry Buist.
Sir Chas. E. Chichester.
Sir Thomas E. Clyde.
Sir James C. A. Dauer.
Sir Solon A. Durham.
Sir Joseph Gorham.
Sir Charles B. Grant.
Sir Isaac H. Hall.
Sir George Holmes.
Sir Lewis A. Holborn.
Sir Frand K. Houston.
Sir Erringten B. Hume.
Sir William Korber.
Sir Franz Melchers.
Sir Theo. A. W. Melchers.
Sir William E. Milligan.
Sir Ralph R. Osgood.
Sir William F. Paddon.
Sir James H. Parker.
Sir Charles F. Sammis.
Sir William A. Skrine.
Sir Charles W. Stiles.
Sir George G. Taylor.
Sir Wm. H. Touchtone.
Sir William A. Wilson.
Sir Arthur M. Williams.
GEORGIA COMMANDERY No. 1,
Sir Otis G. Lynch, Eminent Commander.
Sir Charles A. Robbe, Generalissimo.
Sir Stephen B. Wright, Captain General.
Sir William Hardeman, Prelate.
Sir Henry A. Brahe, Senior Warden.
Sir John W. Apel, Junior Warden.
Sir Henry Edmonston, Treasurer.
Sir George C. Oates, Recorder.
Sir Oliver Ayers, Standard Bearer.
Sir Alex M. Brodie, Warden.
Sir Augustus E. Blalock, Sentinel.
Right Eminent Sir William J. Pollard, P. G. C.
Sir Josiah Mosher, P. E. C.
Sir John R. Stephenson.
Sir Horatio G. Mood.
Sir William T. Mason.
Sir William N. Little.
PALESTINE COMMANDERY No. 7,
Sir T. S. Wayne, Eminent Commander.
Sir Thomas Ballantyne, Captain General.
Sir John F. Lafar, Recorder.
Sir P. H. Ward, Treasurer.
Sir A. P. Adams, Senior Warden.
Sir S. W. Branch, Junior Warden.
Sir A. A. Winn, Standard Bearer.
Sir J. H. Bennet, Sword Bearer.
Sir B. C. Dupont, Warder.
Sir W. G. Morrell.
Sir George S. O’Bear.
Sir J. N. Johnston.
Sir D. J. Ryan.
Sir W. Van Giesen.
Sir J. H. Estill.
Sir C. H. Lufburrow.
Sir W. H. Rose.
Sir Joseph Phillips.
Sir S. F. Dupont.
Sir J. C. Bruyn.
The choir of St. John’s Episcopal Church with this Commandery were:
Mrs. Clara Johnson, Mrs. P. H. Ward, Sir P. H. Ward, Professor C. S. Mallette.
THE PARADE AND CELEBRATION.
The weather was by no means propitious for out door parades. A continuous rain prevailed from early morning until the hour appointed for the assembly, but this had no visible effect upon the Sir Knights and their friends. The visiting Commanderies, with Banner and Beauseant, assembled at the Charleston Hotel, and were promptly in line when South Carolina Commandery arrived, headed by the famous Eutaw Band. All Sir Knights were in full uniform.
In the ranks of South Carolina Commandery was borne a handsome, new silk banner, splendidly mounted and exquisitely painted by Sir Knight Charles W. Stiles. On the front, under a heavy gilt border, is painted the shield of the Commandery, representing a Knight in full uniform, on guard at a tent, with the inscription:
“South Carolina Commandery, No.1.”
On the other side is the red Cross of the Order with the inscription”
“In hoc signo vinces.”
And under the Knightly legend:
“ Non nobis Domine, non nobis, sed nomine tuo da gloriam.”
The banner was borne by Sir Rufus C. Barkley, with Sir Wilmot G. DeSaussure, Sir William M. Bird, and Sir Henry Buist acting as an especial Guard of Honor.
The line was formed, the battalion turned over to the command of Sir Thomas S. Wayne, Eminent Commander of Palestine Commandery, and headed by the Eutaw Band, the procession moved off in column of threes down Meeting Street to Broad, through Broad to King, and through King, Queen and Archdale Streets to the Unitarian Church, where the ceremonies were appointed to take place. Here South Carolina Commandery opened ranks, while the visiting Sir Knights marched into the body of the church, and despite the inclement weather, the ladies were out in full force, and the galleries, as well as the body of the church, were filled. Owing to the absence of the Rev. Charles Strong, of Savannah, who was announced to read the Liturgy, that service was performed by the Rev. J. H. Honour, Past Commander and Acting Prelate of South Carolina Commandery. The services were the regular service of the Order.
The music, consisting of the “Gloria in Excelsis,” the “Te Deum,” and the “Stabat Mater,” was exquisitely rendered by the choir of St. John’s Church, Savannah, who honored the occasion with their presence and services, the soprano and contralto voices especially being the subject of much favorable comment. Sir James C. A. Dauer, of South Carolina Commandery No. 1, presiding at the organ.
The line was then reformed, and the battalion of Knights, presenting a handsome and soldierly appearance, marched through Clifford, King, Calhoun, and Meeting Streets to the Charleston Hotel, where the parade was dismissed.
Among the invited guest who paraded with South Carolina Commandery was Sir H. B. Ryder, of Washington Commandery No. 4, Newport, R. I., who was in this city, in command of a merchant vessel.
At five o’clock the Sir Knights assembled in the parlors of the Charleston Hotel, and thence proceeded to the large dining hall, where the banquet was spread. The arrangements where the most elaborate character. The table, which was laid in the shape of a Templar’s Cross, extended almost the entire length of the spacious hall, and was rich with flowers, ornamental cakes, pyramids, and a brilliant array of glass. The colors of the Commanderies were placed in the hall, and these were reinforced by a souvenir banner from Chicago, made up from the badges of the various Commanderies which participated in the recent Triennial Conclave in that city, and brought home by Sir R. M. Wallace.
The ladies who accompanied the visiting Sir Knights were permitted to take a glance at the brilliant scene, and then, under the care of a committee of Charleston ladies, were escorted to the ladies’ parlor, where an impromptu banquet was served.
Sir Edwin S. Jennison, Eminent Commander, occupied the post of honor at the head of the table, assisted by Sir john Davis, Sir Robert M. Wallace, and Sir Joseph H. Anderson. Sir W. J. Pollard, of Augusta, who was to have commanded the parade, but who was prevented from doing so by the delay in the arrival of the train, at the request of the presiding officers, repeated the Lord’s Prayer, the Sir Knights joining him, and the party then sat down to one of the best arranged and most delicious dinners that could be furnished anywhere south of Mason and Dixon’s line.
About two hours and a half were agreeably spent in the discussion of the solids and fluids, and the cloth being then removed, the intellectual pleasures of the feast began.
Eminent Commander Jennison opened the proceedings in a brief speech of welcome. He said:
Such record and information as we have, show that South Carolina Encampment, as it was then called, was established in 1780. Consequently with the close of this year our Commandery must be one hundred years old. We could not let the opportunity pass without some recognition, and we have, therefore, invited the Commanderies from some of our sister cities to assist us in its celebration. It gives us great pleasure to welcome so many visiting Sir Knights, and we do so with heartiness.
I now announce the first regular toast:
The Day we celebrate, Consecrated for us, by associations of a century.
Responded to by Sir Wilmot G. DeSaussure, P. E. C.
The second regular toast was offered by the Eminent Commander, as follows:
The Grand Encampment of the United States of America. The head of Masonic Knighthood within its limits, its wais and courteous administration of law, has earned for it the respect and affection of its subordinates.
Responded to by Sir Henry Buist, 33º, who said:
Eminent Commander and Sir Knights:
I am specially commissioned by Hon. Benjamin Dean, Grand Master of the Grand Encampment of the United States, to respond to this sentiment.
And I do so with great pleasure, not only because I appreciate the compliment bestowed on me by one who is a distinguished son of Massachusetts, but because I am departed to speak on behalf of an organization than which none within the broad confines of the Republic occupies a status higher or more honorable.
I tender you Sir Knights, from Augusta and Savannah, my thanks for the large and influential representation with which your Commanderies have, on this festive day, honored not only your Fraters of South Carolina Commandery, but our beloved and venerable old city; and I do not trespass on the countless of flattery or propriety when I say that your Representatives who are present are well worthy to speak for our cherished Sister Commonwealth, the enlightened and progressive State of Georgia, fitly designated as the Empire State of the South.
I also tender you, Eminent Commander, subordinate officers and members of South Carolina Commandery No. 1, my thanks for the zeal and energy which you have displayed in the memorable celebration of this day, and I cherish the hope that your Commandery may, in the coming years, grow in strength, and become, by its loyal conformity to the great tenet of our Knightly Order, a bright and shining light among the bodied which bear allegiance to the Grand Encampment of the United States.
It would be interesting to review the history of the Grand Encampment from its formation in 1816, when it was first organized under the guidance of that eminent Sir Knight and citizen of New York, DeWitt Clinton, and to follow its progress for the succeeding sixty-four years, during which time it passed under the leadership of many of the most accomplished and erudite and Masons of the nation, among whom stand forth in prominence Sir Knights Hubbard and French.
But time will not enable me to do this, and I can only use the eloquent and truthful words of Grand Master Hopkins, who, after an eloquent and exhaustive review of the history of Knight Templarism in the United States, announced in 1877, that with “a full heart he congratulated them on the fact that 50,000 swords had been mustered under their historic banners, and that 50,000 brave men had vowed to wield them in the cause of justice, equity and truth.”
Many of those present were fortunate enough to be able to participate in the ceremonies connected with the last conclave at Chicago, and can bear witness to the fraternal enthusiasm which was everywhere exhibited among the almost multitudinous Sir Knights there assembled.
Gathered as they were from all stations of the Republic, the members of our Knightly organization were there enabled to interchange those fraternal greetings which will, in the coming years, prove of inestimable value in binding the people of the North and the South, the East and the West, in indissoluble bonds of amity.
The Grand Encampment in relation to its subordinates may be well compared to the union existing between the Nation and the States, and this may be likened to the solar system which God has arranged with the universe.
The earth has its laws terrestrial, and the State has its laws according to which all things in the earth exist.
But what is the earth without the system to which it belongs?
The central sun holding all planets in her grasp, while they roll in their respective orbits, ever observes its unity and its glory, and illuminates with its radiant light.
And so the Grand Commanderies and the subordinates, as also the States, have their own laws and rights, and those are to be respected; but around, and above, and beyond them all is a great central governing sun; and you can no more attempt to separate one of the thirty-eight States from its allegiance to this indestructible and indissoluble nation, or to separate the Grand and Subordinate Commanderies from their allegiance to the grand Encampment of the United States, which will ever watch over them with paternal solicitude, than you can snatch one of the planets from its orb.
And may I not conclude with the fervent prayer that the Institution of Masonry, of which Knight Templarism is but a part and parcel, may in the future, as in the past, continue in the fulfillment of its beneficent mission.
Based on the principles of toleration and brotherly love, it invites all within its welcome portals, and its destiny will not have been fulfilled until is shall have its rightful sway under our wise and beneficent government, even from the easternmost cliff on the Atlantic, which blushes in the kindling dawn, to the last promontory on the Pacific, which catches the parting kiss of the setting sun.
Sir Knight Buist then arose and offered the following toast:
Sir Knight Albert Gallatin Mackey.” After a long and useful life, devoted for the most part to the Institution of Freemasonry, we give him the assurance from the State of his nativity that he is still honored and beloved, and that we will ever be proud to know that he has few, if any, Masonic peers in America or Europe, and that his works will long live in our loving remembrance.
Sir Knight Buist in presenting this sentiment spoke feelingly of Sir Knight Mackey, and of his long and intimate association with him, and red the following extract taken from a letter recently addressed to him by Sir Knight Mackey, in relation to this centennial celebration.
“As to the celebration of South Carolina Commandery, I have been invited by the Commandery to attend the banquet, and if I could not, to write a letter to the Commandery, but really I am so absorbed in my official duties, that I cannot attend.
The history of Templarism in South Carolina is contained in my history of Freemasonry in that State.
My own services to the Commandery were only those due by a devoted Knight to the body which had honored him. I still love the Commandery, and greatly prize the compliment it has recently paid me in electing me a life member.
Should you find the occasion or feel a desire to allude to me in any address or speech you may make, you may assure the members that my interest in the body has never abated.”
The third regular toast was announced by the Eminent Commander, as follows:
“Our visiting Sir Knights. We extend to them a cordial welcome and fraternal acknowledgements for their courteous union with us to commemorate the day we celebrate.
Sir Otis G. Lynch responded as follows, on behalf of Georgia Commandery No. 1.
Eminent Commander and Sir Knights of South Carolina Commandery No.1:
It is well known to the members of my command, and will now be fully apparent to yours, that I am not a public speaker. I very much regret that the Eminent Commander of the oldest Commandery of your sister jurisdiction of Georgia, is not a person gifted with eloquence and ability sufficient to clothe in beautiful and appropriate language a fitting reply to the sentiment you have just honored us with, as well as to thank you for your kind invitation to be present and participate in the ceremonies of this interesting occasion.
Eminent Sir, it requires no spirit of prophecy to foretell that a brilliant and prosperous future is in store for South Carolina, as well as her Southern sister States; in that prosperity I am sure your Commandery will share, and I hope and believe I will soon be able to congratulate you, that instead of forty-four Sir Knights as at present, you may be able to muster one hundred and forty-four beneath your beautiful banner, and at your next centennial, I trust instead of two organizations, there may be one hundred and two within the jurisdiction of South Carolina.
I am commissioned by an honored member of Georgia Commandery, and (I believe) the oldest Knights Templar in the South, if not in the United States, to convey to you his congratulations and Knightly greeting, and to say he was only prevented from being present by the infirmities of age; I allude to Right Eminent William Tracy Gould, Past Grand Commander of the Grand Commandery of Georgia.
And now, Eminent Commander and Sir Knights, for your courteous invitation, your fraternal greeting, and your unbounded hospitality here displayed, accept the hearty thanks of myself and of my entire command.
Sir Thomas S. Wayne, on behalf of Palestine Commandery No. 7, of Savannah, responded as follows:
When your invitation to assist in the centennial celebration of Carolina Commandery was received, it was accepted gladly; for not only did we know your generous hospitality, but were anxious to do all in our power to advance the Order of Knights Templar in our sister State and City.
That we were correct in the first instance, this bountiful table demonstrates, and if the future shall prove that our visit has in any way benefited your Commandery, then will we feel deeply repaid, and justly proud.
Scarce one year ago your Eminent Commander informed me that you could hardly muster a quorum. Now, through zeal and perseverance, your roll calls for 40 odd names. See to it, then, Sir Knights of Carolina Commandery, that on your next anniversary, your banner borne aloft by increased members, the record will go forth, “Carolina Commandery No. 1, oldest in years, youngest in energy.”
In conclusion, Sir Knights, I assure you that on our return home we will long retain vivid remembrances of your Knightly courtesy, your generous hospitality, and our earnest wish will be God speed South Carolina Commandery on her road to prosperity.
The fourth regular toast was announced as follows:
The city of Charleston. The well digested plans organized by its Mayor and Aldermen, for its permanent improvement, give promise of a bright future.
Responded to by George D. Bryan, Esq., Corporation Counsel.
It is with grateful sense of your personal kindness, and a deeper sense of your public tribute to the present administration of this city, that I arise to the sentiment offered. There is no higher incentive to public service than public duty; but next to that, gentlemen, is the appreciation of those for whom public men labor, and the “well done” of the popular heart. And happy I am tonight to know that plans and purposes that have in view the restoration of our old city, and the building up of the waste places, and making her the metropolis of this South Atlantic seaboard, find strong and recognition from her sons. Nothing can so quickly hasten that good day of fulfillment of those purposes, and reaping of those large results, than such strong words as these of help and encouragement to the administration, and on their behalf I thank you most heartily.
The task is, however, no easy one; for, overwhelmed by the disasters of war, wasted by fire, and broken of her commerce, she languished for many years the victim of strife and discord, amid the din of which the voice of peace and prosperity, of progress, was but faintly heard. Happily today, there is quiet in her counsels, there is strong purpose in her plans, there is sound business principles embodied in the government of her affairs, there is hope in the hearts of her sons.
The outward change and advance are symbols only of a vital principle that pervades her whole body, and which will, while conserving the good of the past, transform her into a new being, a city whose affairs are conducted on business principles and with honesty, having in view the common welfare and happiness of all within her boundaries. May that aim and purpose be fulfilled, and that heritage be preserved for us and our children.
The fifth regular toast was announced as follows:
“Templar Masonry,” the Masonic Representative of the “Poor Fellow Soldiers of Christ,” its tenets are, through the humility of the sepulcher, salvation in a risen Lord.”
Responded to by P. E. C. Sir Augustine T. Smythe, who spoke as follows:
Sir Knight Smythe being called for in response to the foregoing toast, spoke first of the gratification and pleasure which it afforded him, with the other Knights of Charleston, to welcome their Fraters from the neighboring cities of Georgia.
The toast to which he was asked to respond was to Templar Masonry, the highest Order known in the York Rite, where Masonic teachings received their fullest exemplifications. He was embarrassed, he said, not so much by the lack of what to speak about, as by the magnitude of the subject presented. There were, however, two or three suggested by the sentiment just offered, and the gathering at which they were present, which he would offer.
Templar Masonry impressed in their fullest meaning the tenants of Masonry as taught in the lower degrees. The Mason being in search of light, finds, as he professes, these tenets exemplified more and more fully, until in the asylum he receives that final illumination which only completed revelation can give.
Among the earliest lessons laid before the neophyte was that one of chief foundation stones of all Masonry was Brotherly Love, and the solemn ritual of the Blue Lodge, the beautiful ceremonies of the Capitular degrees intensified the precept and impressed upon the brother and companion the importance, as well as the mutual benefit, of this precept. But in the Templar degrees the lesson is gilded with the light of divinity. In the language just read, the Templar is the “Masonic representative of the Poor Fellow Soldier of Christ. That which before was taught by precept, is here laid before the Mason by example, and by the example of the Incarnate God, that God whose very essence and being is love. Here it is that the Mason sees and knows that the brotherly love which Christ taught is to prefer not one’s self, but in the very perfection of love, that each should esteem his brother better than himself, and as he is to be a fellow soldier of Christ, he learns that the test of love to this Master, is love shown to his brethren.
Another lesson early taught is the humility which befits us all, but more especially those, who, as entered apprentices in our Institution, are but learning its rudiments. And as the brother progresses and grows older in Masonry, he sees constantly before him still further advance, still further light to be gained. When he enters the asylum, thinking, perhaps, that as he reached the highest degree, so the light and instruction will now at last be complete, and that he will be perfect, he sees before him as the end and termination of all man’s life, of all mere human effort, the open sepulehre into which his mortality must enter. So is the lesson reiterated and impressed. So is he made to realize and know that man walketh not in his own strength; that the path, even of glory, leads but to the grave.
But one thought more. Dimly foreshadowed, even as under the old dispensation, in the earlier degrees, the advancing Mason receives glimpses and intimations of the doctrine of immortality and the resurrection. Dim, however, and veiled in allegory, type and symbol; not perfect even in symbol, not complete even in teaching. The true light, the perfect truth, comes only in the Templar teaching of “salvation in a risen Lord.” Here, and here only, does he see and know how it is that his mortality is swallowed up of life; here only does he learn who it was that led captivity captive, and conquered death and the grave. And here in the asylum of the Templar he realizes the glourious truth that having lived his life in love with his brother and with his God, he may in all humility enter that sepulchere where his Lord lay before him, and in the certain and blissful expectation of salvation and everlasting life that Lord now risen and crucified.
Sir Knights Smythe then briefly alluded to the pleasure and interest of occasions like the present, where many who had been friends before found opportunity to revive their old associations, and many meet now who had never before, and might never meet here again. To one and all he bade a hearty welcome. They were all Templars, and the Charleston Knights, mindful of the teaching of the Order, desired their brethren from abroad to know with how much brotherly love they were received and regarded. It was with deep humility that they realized how imperfect, how far below their wishes, was the reception which they had been able to extend; that it was with unfeigned regret they remembered the shortness of their stay, and the brevity of this visit. But if the intercourse here was short, in the land beyond the view it would be for aye, and in the fullness of a Templar’s faith and love they would feel that in parting from them here, even were it to meet no more on earth, it would be but for a while ere they would meet again through that salvation effected for them by their risen Lord, in the land where partings were no more.
Sir Knight Smythe then alluded to a Sir Knight present whose brotherly love led him to render most willing and valuable service to South Carolina Commandery, but whose humility prevented his allowing all his good deeds always to be known, and after paying in fitting terms a just tribute to his character and eminent service, both Masonic and otherwise, he gave the health of Sir Knight W. J. Pollard.
A toast to the health of Right Eminent Sir W. J. Pollard, P. G. C., of the Grand Commandery of Georgia, evoked the following eloquent response:
“Most Eminent Commander and Sir Knights of South Carolina Commandery No. 1, Georgia Commandery No. 1, and Palestine Commandery No. 7:
It is known perhaps to all of you, and especially to you, most Eminent, that I do not make speeches, for you have tried me before. I had supposed when I failed to reach you in season for your parade, and the duty was well performed by my esteemed Frater acting in my stand (Sir T. S. Wayne), that my task was completed, and that I would not be called upon for any further service. I, however, will say that I am happy to be present on this delightful occasion. I am so because of the interest I feel in this Commandery. Not quite a year ago, acting, as I then was, as the “Grand Representative of the Grand Encampment of Knights Templar for the United States of America,” I called upon you and issued to you my summons to convene your Commandery in conclave. After diligent effort on the part of your Eminent Commander, he succeeded in collecting together a quorum (nine), myself included. I was glad, then, that it was my privilege to meet even this number, for I soon saw that there was a latent fire burning, which only wanted to be fanned into a full blaze. This was evidenced during the hour of conversation we had, by the flashing eyes of those present, and I rejoiced in the fact that it was certain that each, “Sir Knight” present was intent upon “business.” This I have realized from time to time as I have been kept advised of your steady progress, and I must here say that your success has far exceeded my most sanguine expectations. Tonight we meet again, and I have before me the roll of forty-four active, energetic, chivalrous Sir Knights, who constitute South Carolina No. 1, and that you have been successful, this festive occasion fully testifies. Fifteen Knights Templar have been dubbed within this brief year, and you are now but beginning your career of usefulness.
Now, Most Eminent, you have seen proper to issue to me your official summons, for when I would have remained at home, being unavoidably detained so that I could not accompany my “Commandery,” and after dismissing the subject from my mind, having written you my excuse, I received a telegram from you that I “must come to Charleston and that today’s train would answer.” Simultaneous with this came the ring of the “Telephone,” and a message that my esteemed friend and Frater, Sir W. M. Bird, had telegraphed Sir Robert G. Fleming that I must come to Charleston. In obedience to this summons I boarded the train this morning, and traveled the distance of forty miles over frosty ground (for the ground was covered with snow), when our train took a new improvised turnout (ditch), where we remained for the space of two hours preparatory to a second start; from thence I was shipped by express in care of the express messenger (riding in the express car), so as to be present as early as possible. When we met the up passenger train I received your morning paper (The News and Courier), when, to my surprise, I noticed that you had done me the honor to place me in command of the procession of the day.
This distinction was very unexpected, indeed, and I felt keenly my disappointment. Finding it impossible to reach you in time, I telegraphed you to substitute some other Sir Knight in my place, and am proud to know that that duty was performed by my esteemed Frater, Sir Thomas S. Wayne, in a style far more acceptable than it would have been possible for me to have done. I am, therefore, here in obedience to your orders, and obedience to the order of my distinguished Frater, Sir Augustine T. Smythe. I am before you to return thanks, my hearty thanks, for this most cordial and Fraternal Knightly greeting. The success of this Commandery, Sir Knights, is only as evidence of what may be accomplished by proper effort by any Commandery. I count myself happy to be permitted to meet and mingle in their Knightly assemblages. I am proud that it was ever my fortune to meet South Carolina Commandery No. 1, and if I have been the humble instrument in the accomplishment of any good to you, I am rejoiced that it as my happy privilege to serve you. May the future of this Commandery be one season of usefulness. May she prosper and increase in zeal and numbers. May her future career be one of unequalled and unparalleled prosperity. In conclusion, permit me again thank you for the high compliment you have paid me for this magnanimous Knightly greeting, and the rousing bumper to my health. I am reminded that the hour is fast approaching when our Fraters must bid you adieu, and depart upon the train for home. I must, therefore, ask that you excuse me from making you a speech.
Several other short speeches were made by our visitors and members.
At 9 o’clock the Centennial Banquet ended, many of the visiting Sir Knights being compelled to leave for home that night, with a parting cup of “café noir” and hearty shake of hands all around, as the strains of “Auld Lang Syne” rang out upon the air, and the Centennial Anniversary of South Carolina Commandery No.1, for 1880, was ended.
LIST OF PAST COMMNANDERS.
E. Sir Moses Holbrook 1824
E. Sir Alexander McDonald 1828
E. Sir James Eyland 1829
E. Sir James S. Burges 1830
E. Sir Albert Case 1842
E. Sir John H. Honour 1845
E. Sir James S. Burges 1846
E. Sir Frederick C. Barber 1849
E. Sir Charles M. Furman 1850
E. Sir Albert G. Mackey 1851
E. Sir Henry H. Baker 1852
E. Sir George Z. Waldron 1854
E. Sir Theodore S. Gourdin 1855
E. Sir John B. Fraser 1864
E. Sir Albert G. Mackey 1866
E. Sir Robert S. Burns 1871
E. Sir Augustine T. Smythe 1873
E. Sir Alexander Lindstrom 1876
E. Sir William M. Bird 1877
E. Sir Wilmot G. DeSaussure 1878
E. Sir Edwin S. Jennison 1879
E. Sir John Davis 1881
E. Sir Robert M. Wallace 1883
E. Sir Isaac W. Angel 1884
E. Sir Theodore A. W. Melchers 1885
E. Sir C. W. Stiles 1889
E. Sir Charles F. Panknin 1891
E. Sir James Ackerman 1893
E. Sir Alexander S. Thomas 1895
E. Sir Samuel S. Buist 1896
PRESENT OFFICERS AND MEMBERS OF
SOUTH CAROLINA COMMANDERY
No. 1, K. T.
Samuel S. Buist, E. C.
Edward Anderson, G.
H. F. Miller, C. G.
James Ramsey, J. W.
Rev. John Kershaw, Prelate.
Alexander Lindstrom, Treasurer.
William Korber, Recorder.
George H. Moffett, Standard Bearer.
Julius E. Cogswell, Sword Bearer.
J. H. C. Wulbern, Warder.
J. H. Vaughan, 3rd Guard.
William E. Gnatt, 2nd Guard.
J. O. Mattison, 1st Guard.
Ludwig F. Myer, Sentinel.
James C. A. Daner, Organist.
Henry C. Schirmer, first Tenor.
Edward Anderson, Second Tenor.
Robert G. O’Neale, First Bass.
James F. Lochrey, Second Bass.
Anderson, C. G.
Angel, Isaac W.
Baker, J. F.
Barkley, M. B.
Batchelder, H. M.
Berger, J. A.
Bird, William M.
Bischoff, William B.
Blackwood, J. F.
Buist, Samuel S.
Burk, William H.
Burr, Harry Porter
Cogswell, Julius E.
Crofut, George A.
Dauer, James C. A.
Dingle, James H.
Doty, Andrew H.
Earle, Alston B.
Eason, James M.
Elliott, George P.
Ferguson, James L.
Fishburne, Frank C.
Gantt, William E.
Gibbs, John D.
Giles, W. A.
Glover, John De Veaux
Godwin, Crawley F.
Guerard, Edwin P.
Guffin, George Elliott
Harris, William V.
Heisenbuttel, John J.
Jandon, J. C.
Jay, Palmer C.
Jesunofsky, Louis N.
Johnson, James R.
Kershaw, Rev. John
Kirk, C. St. C.
Klaren, G. F. W.
Knight, G. L.
Lochrey, James F.
Martin, J. Elmore
Mattison, James O.
Mazyck, Wm. G.
Melchers, Louis A.
Melchers, Theodore A. W.
Meyer, Ludwig F.
Miler, Henry F.
Moffett, George H.
Moyland, Edwin B.
Muller, John D.
McDermid, A. George C.
McPhee, F. N.
Olney, A. C.
O’Neale, Robert G.
Panknin, Charles F.
Prioleau, Arthur P.
Remie, T. H.
Rouse, George W.
Rouse, George W.
Sawyer, Claude E.
Scanlan, C. A.
Scheper, Frederick W.
Scheper, Henry E.
Schirmer, Harry C.
Simons, Theodore J.
Sloan, Louis F.
Smith, A. T.
Smith, J. Wesley
Smythe, Augustine T.
Smyth, J. Adger
Strohecker, Henry O.
Tessier, E. L., Jr.
Tiedeman, Otto, Jr.
Thomas, Alexander S.
Thompson, E. A.
Todd, Albert W.
Vayghan, John H.
Vedder, Rev. Charles
Von Harten, Wm. E. H.
Wallace, R. M.
Welch, S. Elliiott
Whitman, J. A.
Wulbern, Edward N.
Wulbern, J. H. C.
LIST OF SIR KNIGHTS,
Members of South Carolina Commandery No.1,
Knights Templar, as far as obtainable, the earliest
records having been destroyed by fire.
SOUTH CAROLINA COMMANDERY No. 1,
Designation and Conclaves.
Sec. 1, This Commandery shall be known and designated as “South Carolina Commandery No. 1, of Knights Templar and the Appendant Orders, of Charleston, S. C.,” under the jurisdiction of the Grand Encampment of Knights Templar of the United States.
Sec. 2, The stated conclaves of this Commandery shall be held in the city of Charleston, on the fourth Friday in each month; the annual conclave shall be held on the fourth Friday in December of each year.
Special conclaves may be called whenever the Eminent Commander, or, in his absence, the Generalissimo, or, in the absence of both, the Captain General shall deem necessary.
Sec. 3, The hours of assembling shall be at eight o’clock P. M. during the months of April to October inclusive, and at seven o’clock P. M. during the months of November to March inclusive. Provided, however, That the Commandery may suspend its conclaves during the months of July, August and September.
Officers and Elections.
Sec. 1. The Officers of this Commandery shall consist of:
1. The Eminent Commander.
2. The Generalissmo.
3. The Captain General.
4. The Senior Warden.
5. The Junior Warden.
6. The Prelate.
7. The Treasurer.
8. The recorder.
9. The Standard Bearer.
10. The Sword Bearer.
11. The Warder.
12. The Three Guards.
13. The Sentinel.
The first eight of whom shall be elected by ballot at the annual conclave in December, and the others shall be appointed by the Eminent Commander.
Sec. 2. All the officers above enumerated shall serve for one year, or until the election or appointment and installation of their successors.
Duties of Officers.
Sec. 1. It shall be the duty of the Eminent Commander to convene and special conclaves of the Commandery; to preside, when present, and members generally in the mysteries of the Orders; to dispense justice, reward merit, encourage truth, and dispense the sublime principles of universal benevolence; also to see that the By-Laws of the Commandery and the Constitution, Rules and Edicts of the Grand Encampment of the United States are strictly observed; that correct and accurate records are kept, and just accounts rendered, and that the returns and dues are promptly rendered and transmitted to the Grand Encampment.
It is also his duty, together with the Generalissimo and Captain General, to attend either in person or by proxy, all meetings of the Grand Encampment.
Sec. 2. It shall be the duty of the Generalissimo to assist the Encampment Commander in his various duties, to receive his orders on all occasions and see them duly executed, and in the absence of the Eminent Commander, to preside.
Sec. 3. It shall be the duty of the Captain General to proclaim the orders of the Eminent Commander, assist him in council, and in the absence of the Eminent Commander and Generalissimo, to preside.
Sec. 4. The Wardens shall prepare the candidate, accompany him through the ceremonies, and introduce him into the Commandery.
Sec. 5. The Prelate shall perform the various duties incumbent on the Chaplains of the orders of Masonry.
Sec. 6. The Treasurer shall receive the revenue from the Recorder, and disburse the same as directed by the Commandery. He shall keep a just account of all he receives and pays, and exhibit the same at the annual conclave in December, or oftener, if the Commandery requires it; and shall also produce his vouchers to the account.
He shall deliver to his successor in office, immediately on being installed, all the books, property and funds of the Commandery in his possession.
For the faithful performance of his duties he shall receive the sum of twenty dollars annum, and shall be required to give bond for the faithful; discharge of his duties, the amount and style of bond being left to the discretion of the Encampment Commander.
Sec. 7. The Recorder shall observe with attention the transactions of the Commandery, and keep a true and correct record of the same; he shall collect the revenue, and pay it over to the Treasurer, taking a proper receipt therefore; he shall issue all notifications to members when required, and shall furnish the chairman of each committee with a copy of the matter referred, and at the annual conclave in December he shall exhibit an account of all the money received and paid by him, also at such other times as he may be required.
He shall prepare and transmit to the Grand Encampment of the United States annually, on the first day of August, the reports required, and remit the sum for dues up to that date. For the faithful performance of which duties he shall receive the sum of twenty dollars per annum.
Sec. 8. The Standard Bearer shall display, support and protect the Banner of the Order.
Sec. 9. The Sword Bearer shall assist in protecting the Banner of the Order, watch all signals from the Eminent Commander, and see his orders duly executed.
Sec. 10. The Warder shall see the Commandery duly guarded, and the sentinels at their respective stations, shall communicate to the Eminent Commander all petitions and requests for admission and favors, and return his answers accordingly.
Sec. 11. The Guards shall challenge with spirit, examine with caution, admonish with candor, relieve cheerfully, protect with fidelity, and valiantly defend their posts.
Sec. 12. The Sentinel shall guard with vigilance the avenues to the Asylum, give the alarm when necessary, and discharge such other duties as may be required of him by the Eminent Commander. He shall serve all notifications delivered to him by the Recorder, or by order of the Eminent Commander, prepare the Asylum for the meetings of the Commandery, have charge of the furniture, jewels and arms, and carefully collect and replace the same after its close, and at the annual conclave in December he shall make to the Commandery a written report of all articles in his charge. For the faithful performance of these duties he shall receive the sum of ten dollars per annum, and two dollars for each Templar knighted, to be paid out of the funds of the Commandery.
Terms of the Orders.
Sec. 1. A candidate for the orders conferred by this Commandery shall make application in writing, setting forth the fact that he is a master Mason and Royal Arch Mason in good standing, naming the Lodge and Chapter in which he is affiliated, also the Lodge and Chapter in which he received the degrees, and be vouched for and recommended by two or more Sir Knights who are members of this Commandery. Also declaring that he is a firm believer in the Christian Religion, and enclosing a fee of ten dollars. His petition shall be referred to a committee of three Sir Knights, upon whose report at the next succeeding conclave a ballot may be taken. If one black ball shall appear, the ballot shall be repeated; and if one black ball again appears, or if two or more black balls appear on the first ballot, he shall be rejected, and the fee enclosed in his application be returned to him.
Sect. 2. If unanimously elected, the candidate shall pay the further sum of ten dollars previous to his receiving the Order of the Red Cross, and the further sum of ten dollars previous to his creation as a Knight Templar.
Sect. 3. Three months from date of receiving the Order of a Knight Templar will be allowed each Sir Knight to equip himself with the uniform of the Order, as set forth in the Constitution and Ediets of the Grand Encampment of the United States, and should any Sir Knight be elected or appointed to any office in the Commandery in a shorter time than herein specified after receiving the Orders of Knight Templar, he shall be requested to provide such uniform at once.
Sect. 4. Should an applicant duly elected to receive the Orders of Knighthood conferred by this Commandery neglect to come forward and receive the same within three successive conclaves thereafter, the fee enclosed in his letter shall be forfeited, and he shall be required to make a new application, unless such reasons for the neglect are given as shall be satisfactory to the Commandery.
Sect. 5. Special conclaves, called at the request of a candidate for the purpose of conferring upon him the Orders of Knighthood, shall be at his expense.
Sec. 1. A Knights Templar desiring to affiliate with this Commandery shall make application in writing, enclose a fee of ten dollars, and be recommended by two or more Sir Knights who are members of this Commandery: his letter shall be referred to a committee of three Sir Knights, and be otherwise subject to the provisions of Section 1, Article IV, of those By-Laws.
Sec. 2. If unanimously elected, he shall be entitle to membership in this Commandery on signing the By-Laws, provided he does so within three months thereafter; and provided also, that he furnishes himself with the proper Regalia and Arms; and in the event of his neglect or refusal so to do, the fee enclosed in his application shall be forfeited, and he must submit to the form of a new application, unless satisfactory reasons are given for such neglect or refusal.
Sec. 3. Knights Templars who have received the Orders of Knighthood in this Commandery, become defacto members thereof, and should sign By-Laws within the period of three months.
Sec. 4. A Sir Knight neglecting to pay his arrears for one year shall forfeit his membership, unless a satisfactory excuse be offered; three months’ notice having been given by the Recorder to said delinquent.
Sec. 5. A Sir Knight desiring to resign or withdraw from this Commandery, may do so on making written application to that effect, provided his arrears are paid in full/
Sec. 6. Any member of this Commandery in good standing, who has been a member for twenty successive years, or on the payment of eighty dollars dues at one time, shall be entitled to a certificate of life membership.
Sec. 1. Every Sir knight of this Commandery shall contribute to its support the sum of four dollars per annum, in semi-annual payments of two dollars each, to be paid at the stated conclaves, in June and December.
Sec. 2. The treasurer, Recorder, Sentinel and Life Members shall be exempt from arrears.
1. The Commandery shall be formed precisely at the time appointed by the Eminent Commander.
2. No resident Sir Knight, who is not a member, shall be allowed to visit more than twice.
3. Should any Sir Knight be guilty of disorderly conduct, he shall for the first offense, be called to order; for the second, be reprimanded by the presiding officer; and for the third, be suspended, if a member; and debarred visiting the Commandery, if a visitor, during the pleasure of the same.
4. A member wishing to speak on any subject shall rise, salute, address the presiding officer, avoid personality, and confine himself to the subject under consideration.
5. No member shall interrupt another while speaking, nor shall any member be permitted to speak more than twice on any subject, unless to explain, or by permission of the presiding officer; but the original mover may answer any objections to the motion.
6. All questions of order shall be decided by the presiding officer, and there shall be no appeal from his decision on questions of order.
7. When a motion is made and seconded, it shall be the duty of the presiding officer, after hearing the debate thereon, to put the question, and all motions or matters not particularly defines, shall be decided by a majority of the votes.
8. No member, twelve months in arrears, can vote on any question or matter whatever.
9. Should disputes of any kind unhappily arise among the members, it shall be the duty of the Eminent Commander, upon application of the party aggrieved, or any three of the members, forthwith to convene the Sir Knights; and after a patient and impartial investigation of the cause of complaint, the determination of the Sir Knights present shall be decisive, the Eminent Commander having in all cases the casting vote.
No alterations, amendment or addition can be made to these By-Laws unless the same be reduced to writing, read at three successive stated meetings, and adopted by a vote of two-thirds of the members present.