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IndianLandMasonicLodge#414:

ABriefHistory

By
JohnH.Griffin

Publishedby
IndianLandMasonicLodge#414A.F.M.
IndianLand,SC

ThiseditionofIndianLandMasonicLodge#414:ABriefHistorywasfirstpublishedinthe
UnitedStatesbyIndianLandMasonicLodge2008.

Copyright2008byJohnH.Griffin

PrintedintheUnitedStatesOfAmerica

ANoteFromTheEditor

ThisbriefhistoryofIndianLandMasonicLodge#414A.F.M.isatranscriptionof
thenotesusedbyWorshipfulBrotherJohnHunterGriffinwhenhepresentediton
April1
st
,2008forthemembersofIndianLandMasonicLodge.Ihavemadeonly
smallgrammaticalcorrectionsandhavenotaddedto,ortakenfromthecontent
ofthepresentation.
IfeelhonoredtobeabletocallJohnGriffinBrotherandtobeallowedtowork
onthisproject.IhopeallthosewhoreaditfinditasinterestingasIdo.

WesleyE.Keenan32
PastMaster,IndianLandMasonicLodge2006

Introduction

In1941theUnitedStatesGovernmentpurchased2,260acresofprimefarmlandabouttwomiles
NorthwestofPineville,NC.
TheU.S.NavyOrdnanceDepartmentawardedSandersandPorterConstructionCompanyacontractto
buildamunitionsplanttoassembleandload40mmantiaircraftshells.
U.S.RubberCompanywasawardedthecontracttooperatetheplant.ProductionbeganinJuneof
1942.
Therewerethreeloadingandassemblylines.Therewasanindividualbuildingforeachoperation,
whichwereseparatedandconnectedbyenclosedcatwalksforsafetyreasons,toisolateafireor
explosion.
Thepowersourceforloadingandassemblywasair.Noelectricitywasusedintheloadingandassembly
operationsforsafetyreasons.
Therewereapproximately12,000workersrunningthreeshiftsand90%werewomen,obviously
becausesomanymenwereinservice.
Companybusseswereoperatedtotransportworkerstoandfromworksinceveryfewfamilieshad
automobiles.
OneloadingandassemblylinewasoperatedbyBlackAmericansbecausesegregationwasverymucha
practiceinthisareaatthattime.
BrotherTobyWilson,alifelongmember,wastheforemanofthatlineandwasverywelllikedand
respectedbytheemployees.ThestorygoesthatBrotherToby,havingbeenbornandraisedonthe
farm,wasfamiliarwiththecustomthatblackpeoplelovedtosingwhileworkinginthefields,sohetold
theemployeesthatiftheywantedtosingwhileworkingthere,theyhadhispermissionandmanyof
themdidsing.
Thisparticularbuilding(thecurrentLodgebuilding),excludingthefrontlobby,secretarysroom,
kitchen,restrooms,andtheanteroomwasthewarehouseandshippingbuildingwheretheshellswere
loadedontotrainsforshippingtovariousports.

HistoryofIndianLandMasonicLodge#414A.F.M.
ByJohnH.Griffin,PMandHistorian

IndianLandLodge#414,cameintobeingthroughthededication,commitment,determination,and
sincereresolveofdedicatedMasterMasonstobuildaTempleofbeauty,wherecongregatedMasons
couldmeetwithbrothersfromallwalksoflifeandformacommonbondwherebyMasonrywould
becomeameansofconciliatingfriendshipamongpeopleandsearchforwisdom,truth,andperfection.
SeveralMasterMasons,membersofCatawbaLodge#56inFortMill,includingtheWorshipfulMaster,
BrotherWilliamPatterson,allresidingintheIndianLandcommunitymetundertheOaktreeinFrontof
IndianLandHighSchoolinearlyOctober1970.This
meetingwastodiscusstheprobabilityofforminga
LodgeintheIndianLandarea.Akeeninteresttoform
aLodgecameoutofthismeetingandadecisionwas
madetopresentapetitiontotheGrandLodgeof
SouthCarolinaforapprovaltoformalodge.
BrotherWilliamPatterson,withtheconsentofthe
brothers,petitionedTheMostWorshipfulGrand
MasterofMasonsofSouthCarolina,BrotherHerbert
L.Middleton,Jr.foradispositiontoempowerthe
brotherslistedinthepetition,toassembleasa
regularLodgeinIndianLand.Thispetitionwas
submittedtotheGrandMasteronOctober26,1970,recommendedbyCatawbaLodge#56andsigned
October15,1970andcertifiedbyBrotherJamesT.Surratt,DistrictDeputyGrandMasterofthe22
nd

MasonicDistrictofSouthCarolina.
FortytwoMasterMasonsfrom5differentLodgeswerelistedonthepetition.
DispensationtoopenanewLodgeinIndianLandwasgrantedbytheGrandMasteronNovember25,
1970toIndianLandLodgeUD(UnderDispensation)withmeetingstobeheldintheformerWilson
PettusGeneralStorebuildingonhighway521.
OnlyonesideofthebuildingwasavailableforLodgemeetingssinceleftoverstoremerchandisewas
storedintheotherside.
Conditionswereverycrowded.Atemporarypartitionwaserectedinoneendtoserveasalobbyand
anteroom.Aportableradiowasusedintheanteroomduringdegreeworksothatcandidatescouldnot
heartheproceedingstakingplace.

Theroofleakedandbucketswereavailabletocatchwaterleakingthroughtheceilingwhenitrained.
Ductworkfortheoilfurnacewassuspendedfromtheceilingdownthecenteroftheroomandwasvery
noisy.
SmokingwaspermittedandbecameverystiflingduringLodgemeetings.Woodenchairswereusedfor
seating.
ThefirstregularcommunicationofIndianLandLodgeU.D.washeldJanuary4,1971.
Thefirstofficersandchartermemberswereasfollows:
WilliamPatterson..WorshipfulMaster
JamesQ.Sullivan....SeniorWarden
WilliamMurphy.JuniorWarden
RaleighHolcomb.Treasurer
CharlesBrewsterSecretary
JohnH.Griffin.SeniorDeacon
RonnieBiggersJuniorDeacon
BobbyJohnson.Steward
BarryMoore..Steward
GarlandWilsonTiler
JamesDeason.ActingChaplin
BrotherBennettGunterwasappointedChaplin.
Annualduesweresetat$7.00.Feesforpetitionsanddegreesweresetat$15.00.
Startingoutonawingandaprayer,isafairdescriptionoftheassetsownedbythenewLodge.
$213.80wascollectedandturnedovertothetreasureratthatfirstmeetinginJanuary1971.However,
thereexistedasenseofmission,apositivespirit,andasenseofcamaraderieamongthebrothers.
UnexpectedeventscameearlyonandtheprospectsofanewLodgebuildinginthenearfuturebeganto
takeshapeinthemindsofthebrothers.
ThefirstLodgeapronsandhoodwinksweremadebyMrs.RebaMcAlister,wifeofRev.Richard
McAlister,ministerofOsceolaandBelairMethodistChurchandweremadeofplainwhitecloth.
BrotherJohnHunterGriffinpurchasedandpresentedthefirstofficersaprons.

BrotherBillMurphymadetheworkingtoolsandchest.
ThefirstalterBiblewasdonatedbyBrotherRaleighHolcomb,LodgeTreasurer.
BrotherGeorgeRinehart,memberofCatawba#56,presentedthefirstAmericanflag.
AttheregularcommunicationinMarch1971,BrotherParksStephensonofferedoneacreoflandtothe
LodgetoerectabuildingwiththestipulationthatitbeastructureofbeautyandpridetoMasonry.The
offerincludedareversionary
clause.Theofferwas
accepted.
May11,1971TheGrand
MasteradvisedtheLodge
thataMasonicLodgecannot
beerectedonlandwitha
reversionaryclause.
InMarchof1972,Brother
ParksStephensonofferedto
sellanadditionalacretothe
Lodgeforthebuildingsite.
Sinceitwasdecidedoneacre
wouldnotsufficefora
buildingandparkingarea.Theoneacrewaspurchased.
BrotherJohnGriffinclearedallthebushesandundergrowthfromthesite.
IndianLand#414wasdedicated,consecratedandtheofficersdulyinstalledinanopencommunication
June12,1971ByMostWorshipfulGrandMasterBrotherHerbertMiddletonandhisGrandOfficers,in
theauditoriumofIndianLandHighSchoolwithapproximately175inattendance.
AttheJune1972regularcommunication,BrotherG.B.GriffinadvisedthathehadcontactedMr.
Funderburke,caretakerattheformershellplant,concerninggettingoneofthebuildingsbeingtorn
downtomakewayforindustrybeingdevelopedinthearea.
Mr.FunderburkeadvisedBrotherG.B.thathecouldhaveoneofthebuildings(thisbuildinginfact)
providinghetearitdownandremoveitfromthepremiseswithinaspecifiedtime.
TheBrothersacceptedtheofferandimmediatelymadeplanstodisassemblethebuildingandmoveitto
theLodgebuildingsite.DisassemblyofthebuildingtookplaceinAugust1972.

Thebuildingwastakenapartboardbyboardandmovedhereonseveraltrucksownedbysomeofthe
brothers.AdozenorsooftheBrothersworkedtirelesslyforseveralweeksgoingdirectlyfromtheirjobs
tothebuildinglocation,working
untildarkandonSaturdays.
Thetrussesforthisbuildingwere
constructedofheavytimbersbolted
togetherandattachedtoacolumn
ateitherendwhichsecuredthe
trussestothefoundationpiers.
Thetrusseswerenotdisassembled
andBrotherJ.R.Wilsonwasworking
forCrowderConstructionCompany
asaforemanandwithCrowders
permission,hesentacraneand
operatortothebuildingsiteto
handlethetrusses.
BrotherPeteHolcombewasemployedbyJohnsonMotorLinesasatruckdriverandtheyloanedBrother
PeteaflatbedtractortrailerwhichwasusedtomovethetrussestotheLodgebuildingsite.
Thetrussassembliesweretoowidetomoveoverthehighwayduringthedaylighthourssincethey
extendedoverbothlanesofthethentwolanehighway,sopermissionfromthehighwaydepartment
wasgiventotransportthetrussesoverthebackroadsatabout2:00inthemorning.
AgainBrotherJ.R.Wilsondispatchedacraneandoperatortounloadandlatertosetthetrussesinplace
asthebuildingwasreassembledtoitsoriginaldesign.
BrotherJohnGriffinwasworkingoutofanoffice
intheArmyReserveTrainingCenterinRockHill
atthattimeandarrangedwiththecommander
ofthecentertobringabulldozerouttothe
Lodgebuildingsiteandgradethesiteasapart
oftheiroperatortrainingexercise,whichthey
did.
BrotherCecilWilsonandFrankKennedyformed
andsetthepiersforthetrusses.
Allofthelaboronreassemblingandnew
constructionwasperformedbybrothersofthisLodge.

BrotherG.B.Griffincontactedtheownerofa
chickenfarmthathadgoneoutofbusinessand
receivedpermissiontodismantleseveralofthe
chickenhousesfortheframingmaterialand
severalBrothersbravedthehomegrown
fertilizerandperfumeandsalvagedagoodbitof
framingmaterialtohelpwiththeinsidefinishing
work.
BrotherCecilWilsondonatedsomeofhischoice
pinetreeswhichwerecut,hauledtoasawmill,
sized,andhauledbacktotheLodgeforuse.

Aconservativefigurewouldbeabout80%or85%ofadditionalconstructionandfinishingmaterials
weredonatedbytheBrothersand
others.
TheLodgeseatsweredonatedbya
LodgeinCharlotte.
BrotherCleatHelms,ownerofacarpet
businessinCharlotte,donatedthe
carpet
TheLodgeformedIndianLand
InvestmentCorporationJune20,1972,
incorporatedunderthelawsofSouth
Carolinatosellsharestogeneratefunds
tocompletethebuilding.Shareswere
tosellfor$100pershareat3%interestannumwithalimitof$15,000insharesoftheInvestment
Corporation.
ThefirstregularcommunicationofIndianLandLodge#414inthisbuildingwasheldSeptember3,1974.
JohnH.Griffin,beingtheWorshipfulMasteratthetime.
Agooddealofinsidefinishingremainedtobedoneatthattime.Noceilinghadbeeninstalled.The
partitionbetweentheLodgeRoomandtheactivityareahadnotbeenfinishedaswellasotherworkto
bedone.
SomeoftheprojectstoraisefundswereafleamarketattheWorldsLargestAtticSaleattheCharlotte
MerchandiseMartinCharlotte,fruitcakesales,suppers,saleofraffleticketsforanewshotgun,gospel
singing,DougElmswouldholdsquaredances,andnumerousothers.

Withtheexceptionofthefrontfoyerandsecretarysroom,thekitchen,tworestrooms,andanterooms
ontheback,thebasicdesignofthisbuildingisthesameasitwaswhenitwasbuiltduringWWII,
containingalltheoriginalframework,justmovedfromonesitetoanother.

ConstructionPhotos

CatawbaLodge#56Circaearly1970s