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Institution of Scofield Lodge

Scofield Lodge No. 32, was instituted on the second floor of an old log house that is generally called ''The Valley House." The lodge prospered from its institution, and initation of one or more candidates occurred at almost every regular meeting. The first loss we were called upon to bear was George Fitzsimmons, he being Vice Grand at the time of his death. Brother Fitzsimmons had joined the I. O. O. F. sometime before No. 32 was started, and united with us on a card from Crested Buttes. Colorado. While working at Leadville he became leaded in one of the mines at that place, and although his work here was in the open air, recurring attacks of the poison would occur. It was during one of these attacks, in the month of April following our institution, that he bursted a blood vessel and died immediately, not having recovered consciousness from the time the attack commenced in the morning until he died in the afternoon. He left a wife and three children to mourn his loss. He was buried in the Odd Fellows' lot in the cemetery in this place. Brother Fitzsimmons was much respected in the community on account of his sterling qualities, and was especially endeared to the Brothers on account of his love for the order, and his untiring labor and zeal in building up No. 32.

The little room in which No. 32 was instituted being very small, every means was tried to better ourselves until a building committee was appointed, with power to act, to build a hall suitable for lodge purposes upstairs, while the downstairs was to be fitted for a public hall. Articles of Incorporation were filed and the hall commenced, and was nearing completion on the anniversary of I. O. O. F. in Utah, so that we were able to give a ball in the evening. Over one hundred and fifty couples took part and the event was a great success. This ball occurred the Thursday evening before the explosion of May 1st, and was attended and thoroughly enjoyed by nearly all the members that we have been called upon to lay away on the hillside. On the evening of May 1, after the explosion, D. D. G. M. Menzies telegraphed Brother J. J. Thomas, Grand Representative, to see the Grand Master, A. T. McCanne, and advise us what to do. This was answered the next day by the appearance of Brothers J. J. Thomas, W. O. Carbis and John Buckle. We arranged to have a joint meeting of the Knights of Pythias, Rathbone lodge No. 9 and the I. O. O. F. lodge No. 32.

When the two lodges met in joint session on the evening of May 2nd, the I. O. O. F. Grand Lodge officers, J. J. Thomas, Grand Representative, John Buckle, Past Grand Master, and P. G. M., W. O. Carbis were present. Representatives were there from the Castle Gate lodges, Coalville lodge No. 28, and Park City lodge No. 4. H. G. Webb and William Featherstone represented the Odd Fellows of Castle Gate, Chancellor Commander Cowley of the Knights of Pythias of Castle Gate, S. Clark and George Lindsay represented the Coalville Odd Fellows.

Each of the lodges represented had members among the dead. A committee was chosen from each lodge to make arrangements for the caring and burial of the brothers.

J. J. Thomas, Grand Representative, and David B. Laughlin, Chancellor Commander, were chosen chairmen of the conjoint meeting. It was ordered by the Odd Fellows and concurred in by the Knights of Pythias, that all brothers belonging to the two lodges should be buried together and that a monument should be erected to the memory of all.

The committee was chosen from the members present and was appointed as follows: John Sandberg, Neils Sandberg, Robert Menzies, W. L. Burrows, John C. Bell, Eugene Chatta, H. G. Webb, William Featherstone, Sam Krebs and L. Smith.

It was ordered by the joint session that the Odd Fellows and Knights of Pythias, be buried from the new hall. At a late special meeting a dispensation was asked for and granted, that the regalia of the order be worn on the day of the funeral. A motion was also passed that requested the Grand Lodge Officers to come to Scofield on the day of the funeral and conduct the services according to the ritual of the order. The officers desired it to be announced that floral contributions for the funeral could be left at the I. O. O. F. hall on Market Street, Salt Lake, Friday afternoon. The flowers were for the use of all not necessarily for the lodge members. On Saturday afternoon the following members arrived on the afternoon train and conducted the funeral ceremonies over the bodies of Odd Fellows that were interred here. S. W. Darke, Acting Grand Master; W. O. Carbis, Past Grand; Master, Acting Deputy Grand Master; E. Homer, Grand Warden; F. M. Ullmer, Grand Secretary; John L. Buckle, Past Grand master, Acting Grand Chaplain; M. M. Beaver, Past Grand Master, Acting Grand Conductor; John M. Breeze, Past Grand Master; A. L. Heaston, Past Grand, Acting Grand Herald; J. J. Thomas, Grand Representative; W. L. Witt, Acting Grand Guardian. Besides the grand officers there are a number of visitors from a distance. Charles M. Orth, treasurer of Olympia lodge No. 8, of Diamondville, and Richard Dermaid, Warden of the same lodge, are among them. W. A. Holman of lodge No. 15, accompanied the Grand Lodge officers. Castle Gate lodge was here with all its members for the funeral.

Pennsylvania seems to be the banner Odd Fellow State, and Philadelphia seems to be the banner city. Philadelphia alone has 47,000 Odd Fellows in good standing, and Pennsylvania has 106,000. The growth of that order is something wonderful. In April 1819, five young men organized in Baltimore the first lodge of Odd Fellows. Now there are prosperous orders in every State and Territory in the Union and beyond the sea. It is about the only religion that a great many men have, and it is enough, for when an Odd Fellow is sick or in trouble, he is ministered unto; when he is dead he is buried, and the fraternal feeling emanates from every lodge, and surrounds every member with an atmosphere of affection and solicitude. And according to the command that is Christianity, it is visiting the sick, burying the dead, and binding up the broken hearts in a way to serve the Master by trying to serve the Master's children who are in distress and despair.

Grand Lodge Selects Committee to Solicit for Funds

The grand lodge, I. O. O. F. has also taken the matter up in earnest, and last evening appointed the following committees to solicit funds:

Salt Lake City- Jacob Moritz, P. G., No. 3: C. H. Walker, P. G., No. 22; William M. Elliot, P. G. No. 15. Subscriptions can be paid to C. H, Walker, C. & N. W. R. W. Co. office, Main Street.

Ogden- A. A. Sumner, P. G., No. 5; P. A. Cook, P. G. No. 5.
Park City- L. H. Hubbard, P. G. M., No. 8, William Kneale, P. G., No. 7.
Provo - Eph Homer, Grand Warden; William Brereton, P. G.
Bingham- Dr. F. E. Straup, P. G., No. 10; James Richards, P. G., No. 21.
Tintic District - J. J. Watson, Grand Treasurer; John Morley, P. G. No. 12; J. B. Roberts, P. G., No. 31.
Mercur- R. W. Watt, P. G., No. 25; F. E. Smith, P. G., No. 25.
Nephi- H. W. Musick, D. D. G. M.
Mt. Pleasant- Martin Wright, P. G., No. 20.
Manti- W. J. Hosford, P. G., No. 23.
Richfield- A. J. Moore, P. G. No. 29.
Castle Gate- H. G. Webb, Secretary, No. 34.
Coalville- J. L. Boyden, P. G., No. 28.
Corinne- W. F. House, P. G. Treas.
Payson- J. E. Betts, D. D. G. M.
Vernal- Dan Hillman, D. D. G. M.
Lehi- C. E. Merrihew, D. D. G. M.
Sandy- Arthur J. Cushing, P. G., No. 11.
Murray - Issac Hadley D. D. G. M.



Source: History of the Scofield Mine Disaster, by J. W. Dilley, The Skelton Pub. Co., Provo, Utah, 1900.

Editors Note: The I.. O. O. F. were very active in raising money for the benefit of the widows and children along with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. This information is included for historical value, it does not mean the people of this project support these institutions.


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