Brother William B. Green laid the cornerstone on which Blazing Star Lodge No. 26 has been built. Through his enthusiasm for the Masonic Order, he found that a number of men at Camp New Amsterdam Air Base had a strong interest in becoming Masons but did not know how or whom to apply for membership. Brother Green enlisted the assistance of other Master Masons at Camp New Amsterdam, notably Brothers Hitch and Henderson, who jointly pursued the idea of forming a lodge. Not enough Master Masons were available initially, but the number of potential candidates at the base made it feasible to actively pursue their plan. Traveler’s Lodge No. 25 at Hahn Air base, Germany agreed to assist in the plan, accepting for initiation the petitions of eleven candidates from Camp New Amsterdam. The brothers at Camp New Amsterdam formed a study class to assist the candidates in their proficiency work. Officers of the study class were Brother Hitch, Chairman; Brother Henderson, Secretary; and Brother Green, Treasurer. In October 1971, the eleven candidates were initiated into the Order; two months later, nine were raised at Traveler’s Lodge to the sublime degree of Master Mason.
In December 1971, the study class petitioned the Most Worshipful Prince Hall Grand Lodge of Massachusetts for dispensation to form a Lodge in the City of Soesterberg, The Netherlands. (1) This petition was endorsed by several brothers at Traveler’s Lodge and was presented at the annual Grand Lodge Communication of December 1971 by District Deputy Grand Master Brother Carl A Cain. (2)
This petition was favorably received on December 4, 1971. A dispensation was granted and Blazing Star Lodge V.D. came into being with Brother Hitch as Worshipful Master, Brother Henderson as Senior Warden, and Brother Green as Junior Warden.
1. Although in December 1971 the Club petitioned the Massachusetts Jurisdiction and was granted a V.D Charter, a letter dated August 20, 1971 was received from Bro. Randall A. Baker, Grand Secretary, Jurisdiction of Colorado, PHA, informing Bro. Hitch of the steps to be taken to obtain a V.D., indicating that Bro. Hitch may have contacted the Colorado jurisdiction for a V.D. charter prior to contacting the Massachusetts jurisdiction.
A second letter was received from the Grand Master of Colorado, the Most Worshipful Bro. Ernest O. Davis, dated December 2, 1971. He indicated in his letter that he had received correspondence from Bro. Hitch through his Grand Senior Warden, RW. Bro. David Holliman concerning integrated lodges. His reply in part was, “The Most Worshipful Prince Hall Grand Lodge, F&AM of Colorado has no restriction on membership with regards to race, creed, or color. Masonry knows no distinction of race or color. It is the mental, moral and physical qualifications of a man that are to be considered.” No other correspondence on this matter is in the archives.
2. Proceedings, Mass., 1971, page 13.
Ernest Allen Jr. (P.M., DGL)
Blazing Star Lodge 26
Seventh Masonic District
Jurisdiction of Massachusetts