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Matthew Trimble, Grand Master, 1897

To Brother Trimble's marked executive ability and thoroughgoing business methods may properly be given a large share of the honor of successfully launching the New Masonic Temple enterprise, which developed during his administration from a suggestion of Columbia Commandery, No. 2, K. T.

He has for many years been an exceedingly popular official of the District and brought to the position of Assessor, to which he was appointed March 16, 1890, an intimate knowledge of local affairs which enabled him to discharge the duties of that office with the consummate skill bred of long experience.

He was born March 16, 1842, finished his classical education in 1860 at Kenyon College, Ohio, and for two years thereafter was in charge of the preparatory department of a college located at La Grange, Kentucky. He received the degrees of A. B. and A. M. in regular course from his Alma Mater. Removing to Washington in 1865, he took up the study of law in Columbian (George Washington) University, and graduated therefrom in 1867 with the degree of LL. B. The following year he commenced the practice of his profession in Pomeroy, Ohio, in partnership with Judge Lewis Paine, of that place, a distinguished lawyer and an alumnus of Kenyon College, but in 1869 returned to Washington and continued the practice of law until his selection as Assessor, as before stated, which position he held for ten years, when at his own request he was transferred to the Board of Assistant Assessors of Personal Property, which position he now occupies.

During the existence of the District Legislature he was a member of that body, representing the Tenth Legislative District.

While pursuing his studies at Kenyon he became a charter member of Kenyon Chapter of the Alpha Delta Phi fraternity, for which he still retains his early enthusiasm, being at present the President of the Washington Graduate Association of that fraternity. He was also identified with the Nu Pi Kappa Literary Society and early developed a reputation as an orator, a reputation which later years has broadened and strengthened to an enviable extent He is a charter member of the University Club of this city, and of the national Geographic Society, the Churchman's League of the Protestant Episcopal Church, and the Oldest Inhabitants' Association, and Vice-President of the Masonic Temple Association. In religion he is an Episcopalian, and since his residence in Washington has been a member and communicant in St. John's P. E. Church, Sixteenth and H Streets, Northwest, being for many years a vestryman of said church and its registrar.

In Masonry Brother Trimble has for many years been actively interested. He received the Blue Lodge degrees in B. B. French Lodge, No. 15, in 1867, having been entered January 21, passed February 18, and raised March 23, of that year. He affiliated with Pentalpha Lodge, No. 23, May 5, 1880, and served as its Master in 1883, withdrawing therefrom in 1907 to become a charter member of Temple Lodge, No. 32. He received the Capitular degrees in Washington Royal Arch Chapter, No. 2, in 1868, and became High Priest in 1877. He received the Orders of Knighthood in Columbia Commandery, No. 2, April 5, 1868; the same year dimitted from Columbia Commandery and organized Ohio Valley Commandery at Pomeroy, Ohio, and was elected its first Eminent Commander under the charter. On February 4, 1876, he affiliated with Columbia Commandery. After filling a number of the subordinate Grand Lodge offices he was elected Grand Master for the year 1897.

December 11, 1878, he was elected and installed Grand High Priest of the Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons of the District of Columbia and served in that capacity for two successive years.

He is Past President of the Convention of Anointed High Priests. In the A. A. S. R. he has attained the thirty-second degree and been elected Knight Commander, Court of Honor, and Past Wise Master of the Rose Croix Chapter. He is also a member of Almas Temple A. A. O. N. M. S.

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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