Masters Corner
Whitney Lodge 229 F&AM
Home| History | Meetings| Officers | Past Masters | Masters Trestle Board | Links| Map | How2B1 | Memorial
Bottom of page


Master’s Corner 

 The Brothers Four

Every now and then Masonic history comes your way and if you are lucky,  you witness it being made. Such was the occasion on January 6th 2020 at  Farmland Lodge #308 when Worshipful Brother Chester Cross, Past Master from Whitney Lodge #229 raised the fourth generation of the Brothers family.

This journey began in 1955 when Brother Chester Cross was raised to the sublime degree of Master Mason in Lodge #606 in Albany, Kentucky. When Brother Cross moved to Indiana in 1972, he affiliated with Whitney Lodge #229 at New Burlington, Indiana, He became the Worshipful Master at Whitney Lodge #229 in 1978 and again in 1983. Worshipful Brother Cross is a 64-year Master Mason. Brother Cross is also a member of the Murat Shrine of Indianapolis, Murpah Shrine Club in Muncie, Fort Wayne Scottish Rite, and the Eastern Star at Whitney Lodge.

Chester Cross, PM of Whitney #229


 Worshipful Brother Cross has had the honor of raising four generations of the Brothers  family into Masonry, which began in 1976 at Farmland Lodge #308 and spanned the next 44 years.  The 4th generation was witnessed by a full house of Brothers from various Lodges as well as Past Grand Master the Most Worshipful Brother George Ingles.

Chester Cross WM, Matthew Brothers, Bruce Brothers, PGM George Ingels

January 6, 2020

Three Generations

Michael Brothers, Bruce Brothers, and Jr. Brothers

December 11, 1976  - Brother Chester Cross was the Junior Warden at Whitney Lodge #229 when he was asked to raise Michael D. Brothers (Orin’s Son) to the sublime degree of Master Mason in Farmland Lodge #308.   Brother Michael D. Brothers served as the Worshipful Master of Farmland Lodge #308 in 1981, 1984, and 1985. He has been a member of the Mizpah Shrine in Ft. Wayne and the Murpah Shrine Club in Muncie. He has been an officer for many years and served as the president of the Murpah Shrine Club in 1989, 1993, and 2005. Noble Brothers continues to help the Shriners by driving patients to the Chicago hospital.

April 29, 1978  -  Brother Chester Cross was the Worshipful Master of Whitney Lodge when he raised Orin E. Brothers, Jr. (Michael’s Dad and Bruce’s Grand-father, Matthew’s Great Grand-Father) to the sublime degree of Master Mason in Whitney Lodge #229.  Brother Orin E. Brothers became a member of the Mizpah Shrine in Ft. Wayne and the Murpah Shrine Club when it was located in downtown Muncie. He later donated two acres of land for the construction of a new building for the current Murpah Shrine Club on East McGalliard Road in Muncie and was a dedicated member for the rest of his life.

James R. Brothers, Michael D. Brothers, Orin E. Brothers Jr., Bruce W. Brothers

*James Russel Brothers (left) was also a member of Farmland Lodge #308

October 16, 1990 – WB Chester Cross raised  Bruce W.  Brothers (Orin’s Grand-son, Michael’s Son, and Matthew’s Father) to the sublime degree of Master Mason in Farmland Lodge #308.  Brother Bruce W. Brothers became a member of the Mizpah Shrine in Ft. Wayne and the Murpah Shrine Club in Muncie, where he was President in 1995.  Noble Brothers has assisted on several Shrine functions over many years of service.

January 6, 2020 – WB Chester Cross raised  Matthew W. Brothers (Bruce’s Son, Michael’s grand-son, and Orin’s great grand-son) to the sublime degree of Master Mason in Farmland Lodge #308

Brother Matthew W. Brothers will also start his enlistment in the United 

States Marine Corps on January27,  2020 at the Marine Corps Recruit Depot in San Diego, California.

The US Marine Corps and Masonry have an ancient link because they both got their American beginnings in 1700’s at the Tun Tavern in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. 

Organizations founded in the tavern –

Tun Tavern hosted the first meetings of a number of organizations. In 1720, the first meetings of the St. George's Society (a charitable organization founded to assist needy Englishmen arriving in the new colony—predecessor of today's Sons of the Society of St. George) were held there. 

In 1732, the tavern hosted the first meetings of St. John's Lodge No. 1 of 

the Grand Lodge of the Masonic Temple. The Masonic Temple of Philadelphia recognizes Tun Tavern as the birthplace of Masonic teachings in America. 

In 1747, Tun Tavern became the founding place of the St. Andrew's Society, which like the St. George's Society, helped newly arrived Scottish. 

Tun Tavern was a significant meeting place for other groups and individuals, of which many were Brother Masons.

 In 1756, Benjamin Franklin used the inn as a recruitment gathering point for the Pennsylvania militia as it prepared to fight Native American uprisings. The tavern later hosted a meeting of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and the Continental Congress. 

In October 1775 a seven man Naval Committee including John Adams appointed by Congress crafted articles of war to build America's first naval fleet. 

According to tradition, Tun Tavern was where the United States Marines held their first recruitment drive.

 On November 10, 1775, the Second Continental Congress commissioned the innkeeper and former Quaker Samuel Nicholas to raise two battalions of Marines in Philadelphia. The tavern’s manager, Robert Mullan, was the "chief Marine Recruiter". Though legend places its first recruiting post at Tun Tavern, the historian Edwin Simmons surmises that it was more likely the Conestoga Wagon . The first Continental Marine company was composed of one hundred Rhode Islanders commanded by Captain Nicholas. 

Each year on November 10, U.S. Marines worldwide toast the memory of this colonial inn as the officially-acknowledged birthplace of their service branch. The earliest Marines were deployed aboard Continental Congress Navy vessels as sharpshooters because they were typically recruited as outstanding marksmen.

Submitted by 

Michael D. Brothers PM Farmland #308 


Jerry D. Zearbaugh, PM Whitney #229



© 2000 Whitney 229. All Rights Reserved
Top of page