San Andres Masonic Lodge receives Texas Historical Marker
The Texas Historical Commission has recognized the San Andres Masonic Lodge #170 as a significant part of Texas history by awarding it an official Texas Historical Marker. The designation honors the San Andres Masonic Lodge as an important and educational part of local history.
A dedication ceremony to commemorate the event will be held on Saturday, July 13, at 9:30 a.m. at 106 W. 6th Street in Cameron.
Speakers will include Judge Dave Barkemeyer, Former Milam County Judge; Joan Ratliff, past Marker Chair; Milam County Historical Commission; and Steve Young, Milam County Judge. The Milam County Historical Commission welcomes the public to share in and witness this exciting historical event.
“The Official Texas Historical Marker program helps bring attention to community treasures and the importance of their preservation,” said Mark Wolfe, executive director of the THC. “Awareness and education are among the best ways to guarantee the preservation of our state’s history. This designation is a tool that will increase public awareness of important cultural resources,” Wolfe said.
As the oldest surviving Masonic Lodge in Milam County, the San Andres Lodge was established in 1849 and officially chartered in January 1856. The members of the San Andres Lodge include many leaders in Cameron and in Milam County. The Lodge has always had a strong interest in education, offering scholarships for area students for over 150 years. The first school in Milam County met in the Lodge building. In addition, the Lodge participated in the leveling of the cornerstone of the Milam County Courthouse in 1890.
Today the Lodge continues to carry out its historical mission of making good men better by teaching strict adherence to ancient Masonic duties and precepts. The Lodge celebrated a great milestone of service in 1956 for its 100th anniversary. The Lodge membership has remained consistent over the years and it has remained an active force of good in the community.
“It is vital that as we move forward, we do not forget our past. The Texas Historical Marker program provides awareness in the community of our fascinating history. We look forward to sharing Milam County history as we promote local tourism,” Lynn Forney Young, Chair, Milam County Historical Commission said.
Texas has the largest marker program in the United States with approximately 15,000 markers. Seventeen states have used the Texas program as a model; the THC reviews more than 300 marker applications each year.