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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Elba in Coffee County, Alabama — The American South (East South Central)
 

Elba Lodge #170 AF & AM

 
 
Elba Lodge #170 AF & AM Marker image. Click for full size.
By Mark Hilton, February 28, 2021
1. Elba Lodge #170 AF & AM Marker
Inscription.  
Front
150 yards south of this site, John B. Simmons built the first Masonic Hall in Coffee County. On December 17, 1851, the Grand Lodge of Alabama issued a dispensation to nine Coffee County men to form a lodge in the town of Bentonville to be known as Elba Lodge #170. At the first meeting, held on Friday, February 13, 1852, a committee was appointed to obtain property for the use of the lodge. The hall was a two-story building used for Masonic business. The first person to become a Master Mason in Elba Lodge #170 was William George Washington Harper on April 24, 1852. Elba's first public school used the lower floor beginning in 1855.


Rear
Thirteen members were present for the election and installation of officers on Friday, February 13, 1852. Those elected were:

William W. Simmons, Worshipful Master
Alfred McGee, Senior Warden
William F. Beard, Junior Warden
James Claxton, Secretary
John Harper, Treasurer
Paul Smith, Senior Deacon
Pierre Darcy Costello, Junior Deacon
Micajah Harper, Senior Steward
Irwin Rogers, Junior Steward
William J.

Elba Lodge #170 AF & AM Marker image. Click for full size.
By Mark Hilton, February 28, 2021
2. Elba Lodge #170 AF & AM Marker
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Spurlin, Tiler.

Charter members in addition to those elected were James D. McLean, James M. Tullis, and John B. Simmons.
 
Erected 2021 by the Alabama Historical Association.
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Fraternal or Sororal Organizations. A significant historical date for this entry is February 13, 1852.
 
Location. 31° 24.819′ N, 86° 4.013′ W. Marker is in Elba, Alabama, in Coffee County. Marker is at the intersection of Claxton Avenue and East Davis Street (U.S. 84), on the left when traveling south on Claxton Avenue. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Elba AL 36323, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 8 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. First United Methodist Church (within shouting distance of this marker); Historic Court Square (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Folsom Birthplace (about 400 feet away); Folsom Estate (about 400 feet away); City of Elba (approx. 0.2 miles away); Site of Curtis School (approx. 5.4 miles away); Arwood School Site (approx. 6.3 miles away); Wellborn (approx. 7.4 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Elba.
 
More about this marker. AF & AM are abbreviations for the Ancient, Free, and Accepted Masons.
 
Regarding Elba Lodge #170 AF & AM. Elba Mason Lodge #170 is the oldest lodge in Alabama and one of the oldest continuing lodges in the nation. Prior to the Civil War, the Free Masons played an integral role in forming

View of marker at corner. image. Click for full size.
By Mark Hilton, February 28, 2021
3. View of marker at corner.
Masonic Lodge was previously located on land just beyond the concrete pads and behind the two tall trees (without leaves) on left background.
the City of Elba and its school system.
 
View of marker at intersection of Claxton Avenue & Davis Street. image. Click for full size.
By Mark Hilton, February 28, 2021
4. View of marker at intersection of Claxton Avenue & Davis Street.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on February 28, 2021. It was originally submitted on February 28, 2021, by Mark Hilton of Montgomery, Alabama. This page has been viewed 88 times since then and 4 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on February 28, 2021, by Mark Hilton of Montgomery, Alabama.

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Jan. 24, 2022