Texarkana, TX 74° Fri H 89° L 68° Sat H 88° L 70° Sun H 91° L 70° Weather Sponsored By:

Marietta Masons mark 98 years

Marietta Masons mark 98 years

April 24th, 2019 by Neil Abeles in Texarkana Region

In the Floyds' Hill Cemetery are Marietta Masons, from left, Louis W. Pitts of Hughes Springs; John C. Dougherty III of Jefferson; Jim Cornet of Avinger; Cecil McCraw of Atlanta; Jodie Harris of Avinger; H. B. Johnson of Douglassville; Alva Joseph Reinhardt III of Avinger; and Michael Dougherty of Everman, Texas.

Photo by Neil Abeles /Texarkana Gazette.

The Masons of Marietta have an appreciation for age.

They are in their 98th year and just recently met to recognize one of their fellows with a 50-year gold pin for his membership.

The pinning of Cecil McCraw took place in the historical Floyds' Hill Cemetery. During the ceremony, McCraw heard these words read to him:

Gallery: Marietta Masons mark 98 years

more photos

"A Mason has family, youth, manhood and age. Youth attains knowledge and manhood applies that knowledge in duty to God, neighbors and ourselves. It is only in age that we enjoy the happy reflections consequent upon a life well spent."

And so, McCraw was complimented by the Masons for his 50 years of membership and his service as a master Mason.

The ceremony was dignified, yet informal and relaxed. Several times McCraw was referred to as "beloved" by his fellow Masons.

McCraw had chosen the Floyds' Hill Cemetery for his honor because of his longtime concern that the cemetery is well-maintained.

"There's an African-American cemetery behind and overgrown," he said. "I've been concerned for 40 years since 1970, thinking that the money that keeps the white cemetery upkeep might do the same for the other."

The 50-year pin in Masonry is not all that uncommon.

Marietta Masons had recently lost a member with 60 years membership in Charlie Hampton, whose father, A. W. Hampton, also had 65 years in the organization and had been one of the original signers of the warrant establishing the lodge.

The Marietta Masonic Lodge was organized in 1921 and is part of Masonic District 5, which includes nine Masonic Lodges in Cass and Marion counties. Some of these are Atlanta, Douglassville, Linden, Bloomburg, Jefferson, Avinger, Kildare.

Member James Cornet, who presented McCraw with his award, was asked his description of Masonry and meaning of membership.

"A Masonic Lodge is a place where good, honest men can meet in fellowship with each other," he began.

"In order to be a Mason, you believe in God and life after death and be of good report.

"Then, when Masons are involved in charitable work, others can see and know the effort is for a good cause and place, such as the Scottish Rite and Shriners Hospital, which Masons support.

"We don't put anyone in the lodge above any other nor any lodge member above any person in the community. Masons bring good men into the lodge and make them better as individuals. That's not being better than your neighbor, but a better man inside yourself."

At the conclusion of the celebration, McCraw had the last laugh—almost. When everyone was silent for a moment, he spoke up.

"The great thing about reaching 50 membership years? You don't have to pay any dues anymore," he said, and everyone began chuckling.

But then someone of the group said, "Unless you want to."

Getting Started/Comments Policy

Getting started

  1. 1. If you frequently comment on news websites then you may already have a Disqus account. If so, click the "Login" button at the top right of the comment widget and choose whether you'd rather log in with Facebook, Twitter, Google, or a Disqus account.
  2. 2. If you've forgotten your password, Disqus will email you a link that will allow you to create a new one. Easy!
  3. 3. If you're not a member yet, Disqus will go ahead and register you. It's seamless and takes about 10 seconds.
  4. 4. To register, either go through the login process or just click in the box that says "join the discussion," type your comment, and either choose a social media platform to log you in or create a Disqus account with your email address.
  5. 5. If you use Twitter, Facebook or Google to log in, you will need to stay logged into that platform in order to comment. If you create a Disqus account instead, you'll need to remember your Disqus password. Either way, you can change your display name if you'd rather not show off your real name.
  6. 6. Don't be a huge jerk or do anything illegal, and you'll be fine.

Texarkana Gazette Comments Policy

The Texarkana Gazette web sites include interactive areas in which users can express opinions and share ideas and information. We cannot and do not monitor all of the material submitted to the website. Additionally, we do not control, and are not responsible for, content submitted by users. By using the web sites, you may be exposed to content that you may find offensive, indecent, inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise objectionable. You agree that you must evaluate, and bear all risks associated with, the use of the Gazette web sites and any content on the Gazette web sites, including, but not limited to, whether you should rely on such content. Notwithstanding the foregoing, you acknowledge that we shall have the right (but not the obligation) to review any content that you have submitted to the Gazette, and to reject, delete, disable, or remove any content that we determine, in our sole discretion, (a) does not comply with the terms and conditions of this agreement; (b) might violate any law, infringe upon the rights of third parties, or subject us to liability for any reason; or (c) might adversely affect our public image, reputation or goodwill. Moreover, we reserve the right to reject, delete, disable, or remove any content at any time, for the reasons set forth above, for any other reason, or for no reason. If you believe that any content on any of the Gazette web sites infringes upon any copyrights that you own, please contact us pursuant to the procedures outlined in the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (Title 17 U.S.C. § 512) at the following address:

Copyright Agent
The Texarkana Gazette
15 Pine Street
Texarkana, TX 75501
Phone: 903-794-3311
Email: webeditor@texarkanagazette.com