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James Anthony Sample, Grand Master, 1890

Born in South Bend, Indiana, October 6, 1844, Brother Sample received his education in the common schools of that State and Northern Indiana College. In June, 1802, he removed to Washington as an aide in the United States Coast Survey, served later in the Navy Department and the office of the Public Printer, and entered the Treasury Department in May, 1869, where he has continuously remained.

Brother Sample has, since 1875, served in the United States Treasurer's office, of which is now Assistant Cashier, and in the cash room filled the positions of paying, receiving, change teller, and vault clerk. In 1892 he was made chief of the division of issue, where all of the United States currency issues were sealed, separated, and packed, and where the silver and minor coins sent in for redemption are counted and assorted. He has been frequently entrusted with the examination of sub-treasuries; was sent to London in 1871 with $10,000,000 coupon bonds for the Jay Cooke, McCulloch & Co. syndicate, and in 1900 was selected by Secretary Gage for the exchange of money of Porto Rico, taking $3,000,000 in United States currency to the island and shipping back to the United States Mint $5,000,000 in the Spanish provincial coin.

Brother Sample is a man of most engaging personality, a clear and logical thinker, an attractive and convincing speaker, and possessed of executive ability of the highest order, an equipment which has been at the service of the Fraternity in the District for nearly four decades, his lively interest and active participation in its affairs having never known abatement since his affiliation here in 1875.

He was for many years an earnest advocate of the proposition to build a new Temple; was prominently identified with every movement in that direction, and soon after the formation of the late Masonic Temple Association became its Treasurer and one of its most valued advisors, and through his trained business ability and indefatigable zeal did much for the success of that enterprise.

Brother Sample was initiated in South Bend Lodge, No. 294, South Bend, Indiana, March 18, 1867; passed March 22, 1867, and raised April 2, 1867; withdrew October 3, 1873; affiliated with San Diego Lodge, No. 35, San Diego, California, January 31, 1874; withdrew July 25, 1874; affiliated with B. B. French Lodge, No. 15, of this jurisdiction July 19, 1875; was elected Junior Warden for the year 1881; Senior Warden, 1882, and Worshipful Master, 1883; was elected Junior Grand Warden for 1887, and after passing through the intervening chairs in regular order served as Grand Master for the year 1890. He was elected Grand Treasurer in 1901 and has served continuously as such since that date. He is also an honorary member of Anacostia Lodge, No. 21, Osiris Lodge, No. 26, and Temple Lodge, No. 32.

He received the Capitular degrees in Washington Chapter, No. 2, R. A M., and was High Priest thereof in 1897.

He was knighted January 23, 1889, in Washington Commandery, No. 1, K. T., and during the same year received the fourteenth degree in the Scottish Rite.

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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