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Myron M. Parker, Grand Master, 1881-83

Born in Fairfax, Vermont, November 7, 1843, Brother' Parker came of a martial, patriotic family, both of his grand fathers having been soldiers in the War of 1812, and his great grandfathers soldiers in the Revolutionary Army, as also in the War of 1812.

He was a student at Fort Edward Collegiate Institute at the breaking out of the Civil War, and in December, 1863, enlisted in Company M, 1st Vermont Cavalry, in which organization he served until the close of the war, taking part in several important battles.

In 1865 he was appointed to a clerkship in the War Department In 1879 he was appointed Assistant Postmaster of Washington and so continued until 1881, when he embarked in private business.

Brother Parker is a graduate of the law department of the Columbia University in the class of 1876. He was one of the organizers of the Columbia National Dank and the American Security and Trust Co.; was first President of the Board of Trade and re-elected three times; is a director in many of the financial institutions of the city; also a director in the Columbia Hospital for Women, Providence Hospital, and the Washington Home for Foundlings.

He was appointed one of the Commissioners of the District of Columbia by President Harrison; was an Aide-de-Camp with the rank of Colonel on the Staff of the Governor of Vermont, and was a member of the National Republican Committee for eight years.

Brother Parker devoted a number of years to the real estate business, in which he was very successful, but in 1894, withdrew from that field and gave his time and attention to corporations, and in this line has very extensive connections, both local and otherwise.

He has always been an advocate of the outdoor life, and finds health and pleasure through his association with numerous hunting, fishing, and other clubs.

Brother Parker is one of the big men physically as well as mentally in the District of Columbia, being several inches over six feet in height, and has an unusually pleasing and dignified presence. His courteous and affable demeanor has given him a wide popularity in many circles, while his executive ability, tact, and force gave to his administration as Grand Master a distinguished place in the history of the local Craft. One instance of his firmness and thorough conception of the dignity of the Fraternity gives this point: Near the close of the first year of his administration as Grand Master the Grand Lodge received an invitation from a Joint Committee of Congress for the Masonic Fraternity to join in the parade on the occasion of the dedication of the Washington Monument, which was firmly declined by Grand Master Parker unless the ^Masons should have assigned them their proper part of the ceremonies. A correspondence ensued which resulted in the Grand Masonic display upon that occasion, February 21, 1885, the Government having finally conceded the point that the Grand Lodge should perform the Masonic ceremony of dedication.

He received the symbolic degrees in Warner Lodge, No. 50, of Cambridge, Vt, in 1864; dimitted therefrom and affiliated with Benj. B. French Lodge, No. 15, of Washington, D. C, May 4, 1868, of which lodge he was Senior Warden in 1879, and Worshipful Master in 1880. In 1881 and 1882 he served as Senior Grand Warden, in 1883 as Deputy Grand Master, and in 1884 and 1885 as Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of the District of Columbia.

In 1891 he was elected an honorary member of Myron M. Parker Lodge, No. 27, which was chartered in that year and which had adopted his name. He received the Capitular degrees in Columbia R. A. Chapter, No. 1, in 1868, and is a life member thereof. He was knighted in Columbia Commandery, No. 2, K. T., December 7, 1872; served as Standard-Bearer in 1870, as Generalissimo during the first eight months of 1878, and as Acting Commander the remainder of the yean He was elected Eminent Commander for the year 1879, and re-elected for 1880. He also had the honor of serving his commandery for a third term as Eminent Commander during the year 1889, having been recalled by his fraters to take the helm during that momentous year. His terms were red-letter years in the history of Columbia Commandery, having been three of the most brilliant and prosperous it has enjoyed.

In 1887 Brother Parker was elected Chairman of the Joint Committee, composed of nine (afterwards increased to eleven) Sir Knights from each of the four Commanderies, appointed to make arrangements for the entertaining of the Grand Encampment of the United States, and such Commanderies as might attend, on the occasion of the Twenty-fourth Triennial Conclave, held in Washington in 1889.

Sir Kt. Parker was the Grand Sword-Bearer of the Grand Encampment, K. T., of the United States, from 1889 till 1892. He is an honorary member of Palestine Commandery, No. 18, of New York; of St John's Commandery, No. 4, of Philadelphia; of Apollo Commandery, No. 1, of Chicago, and of University Preceptory, Dublin, Ireland. He is also a Scottish Rite Mason of the thirty-second degree.

AHGP District of Columbia

Source: History of the Grand Lodge and Freemasonry in the District of Columbia, compiled by W. Brother Kenton N. Harper, 1911.

 
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