CONSTRUCTION OF MASONIC AND EASTERN STAR SIGN BELLMEAD MASONIC LODGE NO. 1329 AF&AM BELLMEAD, TEXAS June 1990 through October 1991 Building a sign in front of the Lodge was first thought of by Brother Claude Baxter, Secretary of Bellmead Lodge, about November 1985. Brother Baxter was working at TSTI at the time and another member of the Lodge, Brother Gene Stough, was filling in as a substitute instructor for the bricklaying class. During his lunch break Brother Baxter went by the bricklaying classroom and he and Brother Stough discussed the possibility of constructing a sign that would be outstanding in front of the Lodge. During the discussion they sketched (on the floor) what they thought would be appropriate. The possibility of building a sign for the Lodge was discussed at a regular Stated meeting of the Lodge and a committee appointed consisting of Brothers Gene Stough, Robert Hawkins, John Beard and Johnny Adams to study the feasibility of such a sign and come up with some plans and estimates. The committee put together a plan that was acceptable by all members of the committee. Brother John Beard drew a sketch of what the committee wanted and Brother Gene Stough drew up the plans and materials list. All Members of the committee spent many hours getting estimates for material and labor that could not be furnished by members of the Lodge. When all estimates were compiled it was decided that Dietz Memorial would furnish the Granite sign, American Marble agreed to make a mold for the balls at no cost, Delony Contractors would do the concrete footings and sidewalks and Prikryl Electric Company would do the electrical. The plan was presented to and accepted by the Lodge and authorization to begin the work was given to Brother Stough. Brother Baxter took a 7 day vacation and he and Brother Stough decided to start work Saturday, June 9, 1990. We would like to mention the following contributors to the construction of the sign and express our gratitude for their contributions of cash, materials and labor.
CONTRIBUTORS OF CASH AND MATERIALS TO SIGN FUND CASH CONTRIBUTORS ADAMS, JOHNNY S. AMERICAN MARBLE (MIKE TOWNSEND) Molds for colWilll balls BAXTER, CLAUDE E. BENSON, SAM BOONE, W. C. BRADSHAW, MARION 0. BELLMEAD CHAPTER NO. 980 OES CARMODY, LAWRENCE L. CARTER, LESLIE D.L. CUMMINGS, JIM DAWSON, E.C.M. GEO. N. DENTON MASONIC LODGE EBAUGH, LEONARD ALEXANDER, HAROLD L. ANDERSON, TOMMY ANDUSS, LARRY P. BAXTER, KENNETH BILTON, J. BOUNDS, JOSEPH BROWNFIELD, JOE BELLMEAD PAST MATRONS AND PAST PATRONS CLUB COKE, CLYDE C. COLE, AUGUST G. DAVIDSON, WAYNE N. DIETZ MEMORIAL CO. (BILL DIETZ~ DISCOUNT ON GRANITE SIGN GARRISON, DON GOODNIGHT, CHARLES HALE, ALLEN D. HAWKINS, ROBERT HERRING, TOMMY P. HUBBARD, DENNIS KENT, JOHNNY MALONE, WILFORD W. MARLOW, WILLIAM A. MOORE, M. I. MURCHISON, WALTER D. NORRICK, KENNETH E. PELTON, MARVIN C. POSEY, THOMAS RAILSBACK, GRADY L. REICHEL, PHILLIP A. ROSE, ELMO SAUNDERS, ROBERT A. SPEARMAN, W. S. WHITE, CHARLES WHITE ORNAMENTAL IRON (Material and labor to weld anchor on flag pole bases) MURPHREE, MARTIN NORRICK, KENNETH E. WISDOM, WALTER GOOD, LEE R. GUDERIAN, JOHN D. HARRIS, NEWTONT HAWKINS, ROBERT E.L. HOLMAN, JUDSON JONES, JACKIE R. LESTER, REV. C. H. MANGRUM, W. D. McCRARY, LINDON MURPHREE, MARTIN NICHOLS, LARCUS S. ORR, EMMETT L. PETTY, WILLIAM G. PRUITT, J, C. RASBERRY, CURTIS RHODES, G. W. ROWAN, ROBERT D. SPANN, RALPH STOUGH, T. E. WILLIAMS, KENNETH R. WISDOM, WALTER SPEARMAN, W. S. STOUGH, T. E. WILLIAMS, KENNETH R.
MATERIAL AND EQUIPMENT DONATION
CLAUDE BAXTER ••••. material and tractor (backhoe) •••••• $500.00
GENE STOUGH ••••••. material and building permit •••••••• 235.92
COY EMERT ••••. material and machines to clean building ••••••••••••••••. 450.00
JOHNNY ADAMS HAROLD ALEXANDER CLAUDE BAXTER SISTER MARTHA BAXTER JOHN A. BEARD JAMES BUMGUARDNER LABOR DONATIONS JUDSON HOLMAN JOHNNY KENT GENE STOUGH SISTER WILLIE MAE STOUGH E. D. STOUGH WALTER WISDOM
The brick was delivered June 8, 1990 and Brother Baxter brought his tractor to the Lodge. Using the backhoe and sledge hammers the task of tearing out the old sidewalks began about 8:00 Saturday morning June 9. Brother Johnny Kent came by about 9:00 and worked until about 12:00 noon. The old sidewalks and entrance way were torn out by the end of the day. Monday, June 11 the excavating for the new sidewalks, entrance way and sign was begun and the forms set for the new construction. Brothers Jud Holman, (a retired carpenter) from Lorena Lodge; Harold Alexander from Waco Lodge No. 92 and E. D. Stough from J, H. Gurly Lodge all showed up and helped in setting the forms, laying and tying steel, making pictures and getting ready to pour the concrete. It should be noted that all three of these Brothers (Holman, Alexander and E. D. Stough) were under doctor's care but still put in a hard days work in the 100 plus degree weather. Brothers Baxter and Gene Stough were also under doctors care. The concrete pouring was completed June 14 around 4:30 P.M. The brickwork was started June 18, 1990 by Brothers Claude Baxter, Gene Stough and Ed Stough. Sister Martha Baxter, Worthy Matron of Bellmead Chapter #980, Order of the Eastern Star, came by and was given a trowel and a crash course in bricklaying. Sister Martha lay brick in the wall and was offered a job laying brick on the sign but declined the offer. While waiting for the Granite sign to be finished Brothers Claude and Gene made forms out of fiber glass panels for the columns, not knowing that the fiber glass would soften and spread when the concrete was poured in them. When they removed the forms and discovered that the forms had spread they were disappointed. They then built forms out of metal roofing and re-poured the columns, making them 2 inches bigger in diameter than the original columns and the mistake turned out to be a blessing because the larger columns looked much better, in proportion to the sign than the smaller ones. The Granite sign was ready to set August 23, 1990 and everything was ready, concrete mixed and scaffolds set up buy just as they were about to lower theGranite onto the wall and into the concrete Brother Johnny Adams noticed that the Charter dates for the Lodge and the Eastern Star Chapter were reversed. The sign was then put back on the truck (sign weighed approximately 1,100 pounds) and returned to be remade. The template for the new sign was ready for inspection October 15 and Brothers John Beard and Gene Stough from the Lodge and Sisters Martha Baxter, Willie Stough and Mary Evelyn Beard, from Bellmead Chapter 980, met at Dietz Memorial to inspect the template before the letters were cut in the stone, everything looked right and they gave their o.k. to finish the sign. October 24 Brother Stough was notified that the corrected sign was ready and arrangements were made to set the sign the next morning, October 25. Brothers Gene Stough, Ed Stough, John Beard, Johnny Adams and Walter Wisdom set the Granite sign on top of the brick work and then the concrete balls on top of the columns. The flower box in front of the sign was built and the electric flood lights built into the flower boxes. The sign and flower boxes looked good but Brothers Claude Baxter and Gene Stough felt that something was missing and after looking at the signs and pictures of the sign they decided that the sign needed a flag pole on either side with the American and Masonic Flags on the left of the sign (facing the sign) and the Texas Flag and Eastern Star Flag on the right side. They carried their thoughts and recormnendation to the Lodge and it was voted to install the Flag Poles and Flags as soon as the necessary funds were raised for the additional project. By the middle of May the "Flag Pole Fund" had sufficient funds for the purchase of the Flag Poles. The flag poles were ordered from Dixie Flag Company of San Antonio and because the poles came in one piece, 22 feet in length, it was decided to have the poles shipped instead of picking them up. The flags, U.S., Texas and Eastern Star were purchased from Dixie Flag Company (the Eastern Star Flag had to be custom made by Dixie Flag Company and the Masonic Flag was obtained through the Masonic Grand Lodge of Texas). The concrete base for the poles were constructed by Brothers Claude Baxter, Johnny Adams, Kenneth Baxter and Gene Stough. After allowing the concrete base to cure for a few days the poles were installed and the four flags were raised. It was decided to install flood lights, with a dusk to dawn switch, to illuminate the flags at night and allow the flags to fly 24 hours per day. At the suggestion of Brother Claude Baxter it was decided to build a brick flower box, approximately 12 inches high, around the flower beds in front of the building. The brick were ordered and the flower boxes and flood lights for the flags were completed the week of August 26, 1991. The Worshipful Master for 1991-1992, Brother Ken Baxter, appointed the following Brothers to the Building Committee, Brother Gene Stough, Chairman, Brothers Claude Baxter and James Bumguardner members. The Building Committee decided to build Flower boxes around the base of the Flag Poles to hide the Angle iron that formed the base for the poles. The boxes were built approximately 24 inches square and completed September 6, 1991. After all construction was completed there were 92 brick left over. The Building Committee approved letting a contract to Allen Glass Company for the fabrication and installation of a commercial type glass door with side lights in front of the existing doors and flush with the front of the building. This project was completed September 23, 1991. The tentative date for the dedication of the sign was set for November 23 and plans made to have a team from the Marine Reserve to present and raise the flags to open the ceremonies and a time capsule prepared with pictures and resume of the construction of the sign and installation of the flag poles and other improvements. The time capsule will be cemented in the bottom of the flower and light box in front of and attached to the sign. Flags that were flown over the Texas and United States Capitals were provided by Robert Hawkins. All improvements, repairs and additions to the Lodge was completed October 10, 1991.
TALMAGE E. (GENE) STOUGH CHAIRMAN, BUILDING COMMITTEE NOVEMBER 15, 1991