History of Porter County, 1912County history published by The Lewis Publishing Company . . . .

Source Citation:
The Lewis Publishing Company. 1912. History of Porter County, Indiana: A Narrative Account of its Historical Progress, its People and its Principal Interests. Volume I.  Chicago, Illinois: The Lewis Publishing Company. 357 p.







Man is a gregarious animal, and while that statement is not original, it is true, nevertheless. Created with the social instinct, as civilization advances and becomes more complex, the individual members of society realize more and more their dependence upon each other. To promote mutual interests, societies or associations are formed by persons engaged in the same line of business; unions are organized by workmen who follow the same trade or vocation; fraternal orders have been called into existence for social intercourse, to care for the sick or unfortunate among the members, bury the dead, and provide for the widow and orphan through the medium of fraternal insurance.


Probably the first society of an industrial character ever organized in Porter county was an agricultural society. On February 14, 1851, the governor of Indiana approved an act of the state legislature, section 1 of which reads as follows:

"Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Indiana, That whenever thirty or more persons, residents of any county or district embracing two counties of this state, shall organize themselves into a society for the improvement of agriculture within said county or district, and shall have adopted a constitution and by-laws agreeably to the rules and regulations to be furnished by the Indiana State Board of Agriculture, and shall have appointed the usual and proper officers, and when said society shall have raised and paid to their treasurer, by voluntary subscription, or by fees imposed upon its members, any sum of money not less than fifty dollars; and whenever the president of said society shall certify to the respective county auditors the amount thus paid, attested by the oath or affirmation of the treasurer before a magistrate, it shall be the duty of said county auditors embraced within the district in which said society shall be organized, to draw an order on the treasurer of his respective county in favor of the president and treasurer of said society for whatever amount of funds there shall have been received during the previous years for all licenses issued to persons exhibiting menageries, circuses, or theatrical performances, or other shows: Provided, said order shall not exceed the amount raised and paid in by said society by voluntary subscriptions or fees, and it shall be the duty of the treasurer of said county to pay the same."

Under the provisions of this act a meeting was held at the court-house in Valparaiso on June 14, 1851, for the purpose of organizing an agricultural society. Aaron Lytle presided, George W. Turner acted as secretary, and a committee, consisting of William C. Talcott, Aaron Lytle, H. E. Woodruff, W. W. Jones and David Hughart, was appointed to draft a constitution and by-laws. At a subsequent meeting a constitution was adopted, one feature of which was that any citizen of the county might become a member upon payment of one dollar. The organ-


ization was completed by the election of the following board of directors : William A. Barnes, Azariah Freeman, H. E.Woodruff, W. C. Talcott, W. W. Jones and Aaron Lytle. Mr. Barnes was elected president of the board and Azariah Freeman was chosen treasurer. In November these two officers filed the certificate required by law with the county auditor, showing that sixty-one dollars had been paid in as membership fees, and the society received from the county the sum of twenty-five dollars, the amount collected as license fees as provided in the act. Fairs were held annually by this society until 1862, when, the Civil war being at its height, it suspended operations.

After the war was over no attempt was made to revive the old agricultural society, and thus matters stood until the fall of 1871. On October 4, 1871, a new "Porter County Agricultural Society" was organized by a meeting held at the county auditor's office, A. V. Bartholomew presiding and Reason Bell acting as secretary. S. S. Skinner, C. W. Dickover and Engelbert Zimmerman were appointed a committee to draft a constitution and by-laws, and J. C. Barnes, Cyrus Axe and D. F. Jones were appointed to solicit funds to defray the expenses of holding a county fair on October 19th and 20th following. With only two weeks in which to make all necessary preparations, a fair was held on the days named and it was a success in all respects. From that time forward fairs were held annually and they were usually well attended. Under the auspices of the old society the fairs were held upon the court-house square until 1859, when a fair ground was secured southwest of town, near the woolen factory. The records do not show that this tract was purchased by the society, but old settlers seem to think that a purchase was made and the deed not recorded. If such was the case, it is probable that no cash payment was made, and when the society suspended in 1862 the grant reverted to the former owner.

After the society was reorganized in 1871, the question of obtaining suitable grounds for holding fairs. On July 13, 1872, the county commissioners solved the problem by purchasing a tract of ground described in the deed as follows: "Commencing three chains and forty-


one and one-half links east of the quarter stake on the south line of section 13, township 35, range 6, thence on a magnetic course north twenty degrees and twelve minutes east twenty-two and twenty-five hundredths chains; thence north eight-five degrees east nine and ninety hundredths chains; thence south twenty degrees and twelve minutes west twenty-two and twenty-five hundredths chains; thence south eighty-five degrees west to the point of commencement; containing twenty acres, more or less."

A substantial tight-board fence was built around the grounds, buildings and stalls for stock were erected, and the fair was held here in 1872. Subsequently about ten acres were added to the fair grounds by purchase, giving the society a fine location, a short distance north of the Grand Trunk railway and just east of the Chesterton road. The fair of 1911 was held September 5th to 8th, inclusive. Owing to threatening weather the attendance was not up to the standard, and the society found itself face to face with a deficit of $1,000, which was paid by the county commissioners. The officers - C. S. Peirce, president; Abraham Lowenstine, secretary, and C. W. Bartholomew, treasurer - all resigned in June, 1912, after deciding not to hold any fair that year, and the Valparaiso Chamber of Commerce immediately began making arrangements for a fair and home-coming in September.

On February 10, 1887, a meeting was held in the county auditor's office at Valparaiso for the purpose of organizing a fair circuit in the counties of Lake, Porter and Laporte. John Brodie, of Porter county was elected chairman of the meeting, and George C. Dorland, of Laporte county, was chosen secretary. Representatives of the three agricultural societies were present, and after some discussion the "Northwestern Indiana Fair Circuit" was organized with the following board of directors: Murry Turner and John E. Luther, of Lake county; James S. Fulton
and E. S. Beach, of Porter county; William Banks and George C. Dorland, of Laporte county. William Banks was chosen president ,and W. I. Talbott was elected secretary and treasurer. Dates for holding fairs were fixed as follows: Porter county, September 20th to 24th; Laporte


county, September 27th to 30th; Lake county, October 4th to 7th. The fairs that year were well attended and in many respects better than ever before, due to the cooperation of the three counties, which created a friendly rivalry among exhibitors. The records do not show when the Northwestern Fair Circuit ceased its operations as an organization.

Toward the close of the decade from 1840 to 1850, horse stealing became common occurrence in Porter and adjoining counties, and to protect themselves the citizens formed associations for the capture of the thieves. The Morgan Prairie Anti Horse Thief Association was organized and a constitution adopted on May 11, 1851. By this constitution it was provided that the membership should not be "less than ten nor more than one hundred." A. W. Talbott, of Center township, was elected president; J. N. Thompson, of Morgan township, secretary, and James Bundy, treasurer. Thirty-eight men enrolled their names and paid their dues as members of the association, which was in active existence for about ten years, when the conditions became so much improved that there was no necessity for its further existence. After the war, horse thieves again made their appearance in the northern Indiana counties and in 1869 the board of county commissioners approved the articles of association of another Anti Horse Thief Society. Like its predecessor, after a few years it was discontinued. In July, 1909, a horse was stolen from Dorsey Campbell by George French, who stopped at the house of a man named Jones in Pleasant township and asked permission to rest himself and the horse for awhile. Jones did not like the appearance of things and communicated with the sheriff by telephone. A deputy went to Jones' place and placed French under arrest. He died shortly afterward in the hospital at Valparaiso. Before his death he stated that it was his intention to return the horse, having borrowed it without the owner's knowledge or permission, and many people believe such was the case. The incident, however, created considerable excitement among horse owners, and this excitement was increased when, on October 25, 1909, a horse and buggy were taken from the barn of Peter Hoosline and a horse from the barn of Charles Ohlfest,


west of Valparaiso. The thieves were tracked across the line into Lake county and it is supposed they were bound for Chicago. A meeting was called at the court-house in Valparaiso for the afternoon of December 4, 1909, the call setting forth that "In view of the fact that horse stealing has become so frequent of late, it behooves all horse owners to use every available means to capture the thieves. The advantage of organization must appeal to all."

The result of the meeting was the organization of another Anti Horse Thief Association, which is still in existence. It started off with a membership of about 100, with a lieutenant in each township of the county, whose duty it should be to notify and assemble the members of his township upon the notice of a theft anywhere in the county. Within a short time the membership was increased to over 200, but as soon as the immediate danger was past many of them lost interest and neglected to pay their dues, until the membership declined to about 100, where it still remains. The officers in 1912 were :William C. Alexander, president; Gustaf E. Bornholt, secretary; Peter J. Horn, treasurer.

On May 26, 1881, a number of old settlers assembled at the residence of George C. Buel, the occasion being the seventieth anniversary of his birth, and some one suggested the formation of an old settlers aasociation. Accordingly Artillus V. Bartholomew was called upon to act as chairman and Firmin Church was chosen secretary. After some discussion as to what constituted an old settler, it was decided that any one who had reached the age of forty-five and had resided for twenty-five years or more in Porter county should be regarded as eligible for membership in the association. A committee to make complete arrangements for an old settlers' meeting in September was appointed. It consisted of S. R: Bryant, William Henry, Azariah Freeman, Younger Frame, William Stoddard, Stuart R. Spencer, Henry Hageman, John Hansford, Josephus Wolf, Nelson Barnard, Isaac Hardesty, T. C. Sweeney and Hazzard Sheffield. The committee met on June 25th and adopted the following rules and regulations for the government of the association:

"1. We, the early settlers of Porter county, will hold social meetings


at such times and places as our executive committee may designate, to be called Old Settlers' Meetings.

"2 That our meetings may be conducted with order and propriety, me will annually elect a President, Secretary, Treasurer, and one Vice- President from each township, who shall perform the duties usually required of such officers for a term of one year, or until their successors are elected.

"3. The President, Secretary and Treasurer shall be an Executive Committee, with power to make such rules and regulations as they may deem necessary and proper, to call meetings and attend to such business generally as will promote the objects of the association.

"4. Our meetings, except when otherwise directed by the executive committee, to be of the picnic order, each member to bring such refreshments as they may deem suitable for the occasion.

"5. All persons over forty-five years of age, and who were residents of Porter county twenty-five years or more previous to the 1st of July, 1881, and now citizens of the county, shall, by signing these rules, become members of the association during good behavior and, with their children, enjoy all its benefits.

"6. Our first general meeting shall be held on the public square at Valparaiso, the 17th day of September, 1881, at 10 o'clock, A. M., at which time our first board of officers shall be elected."

Pursuant to the arrangements of the committee, a large number of old settlers met on September 17th and passed the time until noon in relating reminiscences of early days. Dinner was then served upon the public square to more than 500 people. At two o'clock in the afternoon Azariah Freeman called the meeting to order, prayer was offered by Rev. W. J. Forbes, and Mayor Skinner made a short address, welcoming the pioneer men and women and extending to them the hospitalities of the city. This was followed by short speeches by Mark L. De Motte, Jesse Johnston, Rev. G. M. Boyd, William McCool, Russell Cohoon, George C. Morgan, S. P. Robbins, David Merriman, Nelson Barnard, A. V. Bartholomew, Rev. W. J. Forbes and others, old-fashioned songs being inter-


spersed between the addresses. Next came the election of officers. A. V. Bartholomew was chosen president; Reason Bell, secretary; and the following vice-presidents were elected for the several townships: T. C. Sweeney, Boone; William J. Forbes, Center; Nelson Barnard, Jackson; William Henry, Sr., Liberty; Elias Cain, Morgan; Samuel Hackett, Pine; Simeon Witham, Pleasant; William McCool, Portage; Ira Cornell, Porter; Isaac Hardesty, Union; Charles R. Luther, Washington; and George Morgan, Westchester.

The second annual meeting of the association was held in September, 1882, when A. V. Bartholomew called the meeting to order and the invocation was offered by Rev. Robert Beer, pastor of the Presbyterian church, Mayor T. G. Lytle delivered an address of welcome, and speeches were made by Rev. G. M. Boyd, John Hansford, S. W. Smith, Hiram Loomis, S. P. Robbins, Rev. W. J. Forbes and N. S. Fairchild. Hubbard Hunt read a list of old settlers who had died within recent years, and upon motion of Mayor Lytle the old officers were all reelected for another year.

Meetings were held by the association annually for several years but as the old settlers were cut off by the unrelentless hand of death interest in the meetings decreased and the association finally passed into history. An old settlers' association was also organized at Hebron and a number of interesting meetings were held by the pioneers of the southern part of the county. But, like the association at Valparaiso, as the old men and women died off their descendants lost interest and the meetings were discontinued.

Of the secret orders, the Masonic fraternity was the first to organize a lodge in Porter county. In May, 1842, a meeting was held at the house of Adam S. Campbell for the purpose of forming a lodge. There were present at that meeting Arthur Buel, Adam S. Campbell, William K. Talbott, John E. Harris, James Luther and Jonathan Grffin. Arthur Buel presided and William K. Talbott acted as secretary. The following resolutions were adopted:

"1. That we forthwith apply to the Grand Lodge of the State of


Indiana for a dispensation to transact business as a regular lodge of F. & A. York Masons by the title of Porter Lodge.

"2. That brethren A. S. Campbell and John E. Harris be a committee to visit the lodge at Laporte and procure their recommendation.

"3. That brother John E. Harris be recommended as W. M., brother A. S. Campbell as S. W., brother A. Buel as J. W., James Luther as treasurer and W. K. Talbott as secretary.

"4. That brothers Talbott, Luther and Griffin draft by-laws and present them for our examination."

The meeting then adjourned to meet at the call of the worshipful master. On June 6, 1842, the lodge met for the first time under dispensation and the officers were installed by Thomas D. Lemon, deputy grand master. The by-laws adopted fixed the fees at $10 for the first degree; $2 for the second, $3 for the third. and for admission on dimit from another lodge, $2. E. C. Abbott was the first representative to the grand lodge, with instructions to apply for a charter. The charter granted to this lodge was dated May 24, 1843, and the last meeting of which there is any record was held in May, 1844.

Porter county was then without a Masonic lodge for six years. On June 25, 1850, a dispensation to organize a lodge at Valparaiso was granted by Elizur Deming, grand master. The officers of the lodge under dispensation were: George C. Buel, W. M.; Arthur M. Buel, S. W.; Isaac W. Bowman, J. W.; John Wark, treasurer, and George Z. Salyer, secretary. On May 27, 1852, a charter was granted to the lodge as Porter Lodge, No. 137, F. & A. M. This charter was signed by Alexander C. Downey as grand master. The charter members of the lodge were George C. Buel, W. M.; Isaac W. Bowman, S. W.; George Z. Salyer, J. W.; Jesse Johnston, treasurer; Joseph Pierce, secretary; Oliver I. Skinner, S. D.; Richard Burge, J. D.; Lord N. Skinner, tiler; N. S. Fairchild, John Wood, John E. Harris, Andrew Hopp, and a few others. The officers under the charter were installed in the public square at Valparaiso on July 7, 1852, at which time the charter was delivered by a representative of the grand lodge, and since that time the


lodge has had a steady and substantial growth, numbering 233 members on January 1, 1912. At one time the lodge owned a hall on the north side of Main street, a short distance east of Washington, but the quarters there became too small and in 1886 all the Masonic bodies in the city united in leasing the third floor of the Academy Block and fitting it up for Masonic purposes. Subsequently the old hall was sold to the Modern Woodmen. The officers of Porter Lodge for 1912 were: Byron H. Kinne, W. M.; Robley D. Blount, S. W.; G. L. Maxwell, J. W.; John H. Ross, treasurer; Mark L. Dickover, secretary; Ray C. Yeoman, S. D.; Benjamin F. Smith, J. D.; Clinton Jones and D. W. Blachly, stewards; William D. Marquart, tiler.

The second Masonic lodge in the county was organized at Chesterton, under a dispensation dated March 9, 1868. On May 27, 1868, it received a charter as Calumet Lodge No. 379, with George Rawson, W. M.; Benjamin Little, S. W.; and John A. Harris, J. W. These three officers, with F. B. Coffin, John Thomas, George C. Collins, John C. Coulter, John B. Lindberg, L. B. Osborn and Abraham Fuller, constituted the charter members. In 1912 the lodge had eighty-four members, and the officers for that year were as follows: Joseph Mead, W. M.; Charles Pillman, S. W.; Charles Babcock, J. W.; Horace I. Mannering, treasurer; Adrian A. Whitman, secretary; Victor Vandemplas, S. D., and William A. Wood, J. D. The regular meetings of the lodge are held on the second and fourth Wednesdays in each month in the H. F. Carlson Block. The early records of this lodge were destroyed by fire, hence it is impossible to get a complete history of its career. There was formerly a chapter of Royal Arch Masons at Chesterton, but it surrendered its charter in October, 1911, when the membership was transferred to the chapter at Valparaiso.

Evergreen Lodge, No. 403, F. & A. M., was organized at Wheeler on May 25, 1869, with Andrew J. Harrison as worshipful master; D. S. Curtis as senior warden, and Miller Shinabarger as junior warden. The following year a two-story frame building, with a hall on the second floor was purchased and in a short time it was fully paid for.


For several years the lodge continued to flourish, when it met with reverses, and in 1900 the charter was surrendered.

Hebron Lodge, No. 502, F. & A. M., was organized under a dispensation dated June 9, 1874. At the next meeting of the grand lodge a charter was granted and the lodge was regularly instituted on May 25, 1875, with Lyman C. Dunn as worshipful master; Samuel R. Pratt, senior warden; Lewis P. Scott, junior warden; William M. Nelson, senior deacon; Thomas V. Rockwell, junior deacon; Samuel Irvin, secretary; John Skelton, treasurer, and C. B. Casman, tiler. The eight officers, with John Bryant and John D. Holton, constituted the ten charter members. Stated meetings are held on the first Monday evenings of each month. Hebron Lodge has been far more prosperous than the average lodge in a small town. It owns a substantial two-story brick building upon the main business street and has an annual income of over $500, aside from the amounts collected in dues and initiation fees. After twenty years its members are exempt from the payment of dues, except the grand lodge dues. At the beginning of the year 1912, the lodge reported ninety members, with the following officers: M. Earl Dinsmore, W. M.; Roger H. Bates, S. W.; Frank E. Nichols, J. W.; J. M. Morrow, S. D.; Francis E. Ling, J. D.; Melvin Foltz, treasurer; E. A. Edmonds, secretary; George Davis and Lee Morrow, stewards; M. E. Nichols, tiler. There was once a Masonic lodge at Kouts, but the records are not available and its history cannot be learned.

Valparaiso Chapter, No. 79, Royal Arch Masons, received its dispensation from the Indiana Grand Chapter on November 8, 1869, and was organized by William Hacker, past grand high priest, with the following officers: John Eason, H. P.; M. L. McClelland, K.; Albert E. Letts, S.; T. H. Gould, C. H.; R. C. Wadge, P. S.; Ferd. Peitz, R. A. C.; Joseph Steinfield, G. M. 3d V.; William F. Mann, G. M. 2nd V.; L. C. Pomeroy, G. M. 1st V.; S. R. Bryant, treasurer; Don A. Salyer, secretary; David Hughart, guard. The charter is dated October 20, 1870, and is signed by H. Q. Hazelrigg, who at that time was grand high priest. On January 1, 1912, the membership was 163. Regular


meetings are held on the third Thursday of each month in the Masonic hall in the Academy Block. The officers for 1912 were: Robley D. Blount, H. P.; Byron H. Kinne, K.; Clarence Stockman, S.; William H. Williams, C. H.; Leonard Maxwell, R. A. C.; Orris Booth, P. S.; John H. Ross, treasurer; Mark L. Dickover, secretary; William F. Lederer, G. M. 3d V.; Benjamin F. Smith, G. M. 2nd V.; James D. Hollett, G. M. 1st V.; William D. Marquart, guard.

Valparaiso Commandery, No. 28, Knights Templars, was organized under a dispensation dated May 11, 1876. The charter is dated April 25, 1877, and bears the signature of Ervilla B. Bishop, grand commander. The first officers of the commandery were: John Eason, E. C.; Simeon Pierce, Gen.; James M. McGill, C. G.; F. F. B. Coffin, prelate; John D. Wilson, S. W.; Samuel A. Campbell, J.W.; S. R. Bryant, treasurer; Albert E. Letts, recorder; John McCormick, St. B.; R. C. Wadge, Sw. B.; Marquis L. McClelland, warden; Allen R. Nichols, sentinel. A hall was leased on the third floor at the northwest corner of Main and Lafayette streets, where regular meetings were held until the building was destroyed by fire in January, 1886, and soon after the fire the commandery took up its quarters in the Academy Block, where the regular meetings are now held on the second Thursday evening of each month. On January 1, 1912, the commandery reported 105 members, and the officers for 1912 were as follows: John H. Ross, E. C.; Addison N. Worstell, Gen.; Byron H. Kinne, C. G.; Jonathan Osborn, prelate; Edmund W. Chaffee, S. W.; Clarence Stockman, J. W.; Fred. M. Linder, St. B.; John Carson, Sw. B.; William F. Lederer, warder; William H..Williams, treasurer; Mark L. Dickover, recorder; Andrew J. Zorn, sentinel.

On May 3, 1910, a number of Masons got together in Valparaiso and took the preliminary steps for the organization of a council of Royal and Select Masters. A dispensation, dated May 14, 1910, was secured from the grand council, and on October 19, 1910, the organization received a charter as Valparaiso Council, No. 86. The charter members were William H. Williams, Sylvanus J. Summer, Joseph C. Carson, Ho-

bart B. Hayden, Daniel Johnston, Mark L. Dickover, Robley D. Blount, Charles S. Arnold, E. G. Osborne, Herman A. Boehlke, John H. Ross, R. J. Patrick, Fred. M. Lindner, Henry B. Kinney, James D. Hollett, Charles D. Jones and John E. Groth. Fifty-one members were reported on January 1, 1912, at which time the officers of the council were: William H. Williams, T. I. M.; Jonathan Osborn, R. I. D. M.; Byron H. Kinne, I. P. C. W.; Addison N. Worstell, C. of G.; Clarence Stockman, C. of C.; Mark L. Dickover, recorder; John H. Ross, treasurer; Ralph A. Miller, sentinel.

Chapters of the Order of the Eastern Star - the ladies' degree of Masonry - have been organized at Hebron, Valparaiso and Chesterton, in the order named. Spencer Baker Chapter, No. 119, at Hebron, was organized on April 28, 1892, with thirty charter members, to wit: Carrie B. Baker, Jane Sampson, Minnie Nelson, Lavina Beattie, John J. Beattie, M. J. Stinchfield, Phoebe Stinchfield, Carrie R. Hubbard, Margaret Kenny, L. P. Scott, George C. Gregg, Jennie Gregg, R. S. Kenny, Anna Carson, Flora Baker, John L. Baker, George V. Moss, J. M. Morrow, Nettie C. Morrow, Mattie Nichols, S. C. McIntyre, H. B. Kenny, J. E. Carson, Janie Carson, Maggie C. Adams, John Carson, Mrs. S. L. Kithcart, William C. Nichols, D. A. Fisher and Mrs. E. L. Fisher. Carrie R. Hubbard was the first worthy matron; George C. Gregg, the first worthy patron; Anna Carson, the first associate matron, and Phoebe Stinchfield, the first secretary. Regular meetings are held on the second and fourth Tuesdays of each month. In 1912 the chapter reported ninety-five members, with the following officers: Blanche Dinsmore, worthy matron; J. M. Morrow, worthy patron; Lottie Nichols, associate matron; Kate M. Myers, secretary; Carrie Nichols, treasurer; Mamie Nichols, conductress; Nettie Morrow, associate conductress; Jennie Gregg, chaplain; Blanche Rathburn, Adah; Emma Morrow, Ruth; Neva Nichols, Esther; Fay Nichols, Martha; Christine Kenny, Electa;Laura Myers, warder; James Carson, sentinel; Neva Gidley, organist.

Valparaiso Chapter, No. 164, Order of the Eastern Star, was organized on January 4, 1895, by L. P. Scott, of Hebron, at that time


deputy grand patron. The charter members were: Mrs. Kate Agnew, Mrs. Samantha Patrick, Mrs. Charlotte Crumpacker, Mrs. Maggie Segerdahl, Mrs. Jessie Arvin, Mrs. Julia Edwards, Mrs. Belle Rock, Mrs. Elizabeth Arnold, Mrs. Alice Windle, Mrs. Malinda Patrick, Mrs. Cora Renner, Mrs. Caroline Pomeroy, Mrs. Mary Vincent, Mrs. Minnie Maulsby, Miss Edith Patrick, Miss Hattie Eason, Miss Florence Higgins, M. L. McClelland, E. V. Arnold, J. Rock, James Edwards, F. N. Arvin, William Segerdahl, E. D. Crumpacker, J. C. Carson and J. H. Patrick. The first officers of the chapter were as follows: Kate Agnew, worthy matron; Joseph C. Carson, worthy patron; Charlotte Crumpacker, associate matron; Minnie Maulsby, secretary; Malinda Patrick, treasurer; Florence Higgens, conductress; Hattie Eason, associate conductress. Regular meetings are held in the Masonic hall on the second and fourth Monday evenings of each month. The chapter has prospered from the start, and in 1912 had 309 members in good standing. Since the organization in 1895, eleven women have held the office of worthy matron, and the chapter has been honored by having one of its members elected grand matron of the Indiana Grand Chapter - Mrs. Paulina Summers, who presided in 1910. The officers for 1912 were: Emma Starr, worthy matron; Clarence Stockman, worthy patron; May Fenton, associate matron; Mrs. D. S. Jones, secretary; Harriet Doyle, treasurer; Edna Summers, conductress; Bertie G. Fehrman, associate conductress.

Early in 1902 the wives and daughters of the members of Calumet Lodge, at Chesterton, became interested in a movement to organize an Eastern Star chapter. As a result of their efforts, Chesterton Chapter, No. 274, was instituted on April 24, 1902, with Etta Osborn as worthy matron, and LeRoy Diddie, worthy patron. Soon after the chapter was established the records were destroyed by fire, which makes it impossible to obtain a correct list of the charter members or the names of all the first officers. In 1912 there were 108 members in good standing, with the following officers: Dott Osborn, worthy matron; Hallard A. Flynn, worthy patron; Charlotte Darmon, associate matron; Tennia Osborn, secretary; Lillie Mannering, treasurer; Eva C. Flynn, conduc-


tress; Josie Brown, associate conductress; Anna Hagans, chaplain; Margaret Brummitt, Adah; Nora Ritter, Ruth; B. Whitman, Esther; Linnie Krausgrill, Martha; Estella Osborn, Electa; A. A. Whitman, marshal; Hattie Roe, organist.

Odd Fellowship had its origin in England about the beginning of the Nineteenth century, though the time and place where the first lodge was formed is not definitely known. In 1812 delegates from the several lodges around Manchester met and formed the "Manchester Unity of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows." Some five or six years before that time a lodge was organized in New York and another in Brooklyn by Solomon Chambers and his two sons, who had joined the order before leaving England. Both these lodges were short-lived, and it was not until 1819 that the first lodge was firmly established in the United States. That lodge was organized at Baltimore, Maryland; by Thomas Wildey and another Odd Fellow who came from England in 1818. On February 1, 1820, the Baltimore lodge received a charter from the Manchester Unity under the name of "Washington Lodge and Grand Lodge of Maryland and the United States of America," which is recognized in the history of the order as the first lodge in the United States. Some years later American Odd Fellowship severed its connection with the Manchester Unity, and in 1879 the grand lodge adopted the name of "Sovereign Grand Lodge of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows."

The first Odd Fellows lodge in Porter county was Chequeuk Lodge, No. 56, of Valparaiso, which was instituted on December 2, 1848, with Joseph Lomax as noble grand; E. Ellis Campbell, vice grand; John Dunning, secretary; Robert G. Flint, treasurer, and William Harrison, inside guard. These men also constituted the charter members of the lodge, having previously taken the five degrees of the order at Laporte. So far as can be learned, the lodge first met in Byers' old frame building on South Washington street, about two-thirds of the way from Main to Indiana avenue. From there it removed to the third floor of the Salyer Block on West Main street, and later to the third floor of the building on East Main, where Louis Horn's building now stands. Here, on August


30, 1859, the lodge was burned out, losing everything except a set of regalia, recently purchased at a cost of about $250. At the November session of the grand lodge the following November an appropriation was made sufficient to enable the Valparaiso lodge to recoup its loss. Meetings were then held in the county auditor's office until the burned building was restored, when the lodge was moved back to its old quarters. A few years later it was learned that thirty-three feet of ground where Lowenstine's department store now stands, on South Franklin street, could be bought at a reasonable price. Tickets at fifty cents each were issued by the lodge and sold to its members, and to members of other lodges, until the purchase price - about $1,000 - was raised, when the deal was consummated and Chequeuk Lodge became possessed of a home of its own. A few years later the lodge was forced to foreclose a mortgage which it held on the property situated at what is now 503 Calumet avenue. After the foreclosure, the property there was sold to a Mrs. Brown and the proceeds used to erect a new building on Franklin street. This building was formally dedicated on April 26, 1883, the ceremonies being conducted by Hon. Will Cumback, one of the most prominent Odd Fellows in the state. Visitors were present from Laporte, South Bend, and other points, and they were unanimous in pronouncing the new hall one of the finest in northern Indiana. Here the lodge continued to meet until 1901, when an opportunity presented itself for the lodge to sell the property to good advantage. As there was some indebtedness against the building, the sale was made, and soon afterward the lodge bought the building known as the Opera House at 162 West Main street. About $10,000 were expended in remodeling the building, and here the lodge has since held its meetings. In July, 1912, the lodge reported 116 members, with the following officers: J. E. P. Dodd, noble grand; Edward Bell, vice grand; Leslie E. Lembke, secretary; Alfred Banister, treasurer. There is also an encampment and a lodge of Rebekahs at Valparaiso. At one time there was a canton of the Patriarchs Militant, but it has been discontinued.

Magenta Lodge, No. 288, Independent Order of Odd Fellows, located


at Wheeler, was organized on November 20, 1867, with Joseph Wolf, Dr. H. Green, Daniel Saunders, George Sigler and Thomas Stonix as the first officers, but owing to the absence of the old records it cannot be ascertained what position they respectively held. The lodge reported thirty-six members in 1912, with the following officers: C. G. Burge, noble grand; John H. Reimers, vice grand; Charles Marquart, financial secretary; H. W. Abbott, recording secretary; Jacob Ehlers, treasurer. Regular meetings are held every Saturday evening. Although not strong in numbers, the lodge is one of the strongest financially in the county. It owns two buildings, the lower floors of which are rented for mercantile purposes, the old lodge hall is now used as a public hall and banquet room, while the new hall, in which the lodge meetings are held, is considered one of the best equipped in this section of the state.

A charter dated July, 19, 1855, was granted to Chegemink Lodge, No. 161, Independent Order of Odd Fellows, located at Chesterton, with about a dozen charter members. For twenty-five years or more the lodge was apparently prosperous, owning property valued at some $1,500. Then the meetings ceased and the lodge lay dormant until April 8, 1905, when it was reorganized, with Charles O. Seamans, H. H. Williams, George R. Williams, A. H. Bock, Nathan Demass, David McHenry, Emil Blatz, Martin Young, John G. Morgan, Josiah Castleman and E. F. Schafer as charter members. The old charter and number were restored and the following officers were elected: H. H. Williams, noble grand; A. H. Bock, vice grand; George R. Williams, recording and financial secretary; Emil Blatz, treasurer. Since the reorganization the lodge has made a steady growth, and in 1912 had fifty-five members in good standing. The officers for 1912 were: James L. Richardson, noble grand; Albert C. Greiger, vice grand; Jerry Marquart, secretary; Ernest G. Schneider, treasurer. Regular meetings are held every Monday evening.

The youngest Odd Fellows' lodge in the county is Kouts Lodge, No. 822, which was instituted on February 21, 1905, with Fred Allbright as noble grand; W. Cunningham, vice grand; D. J. Fairchild, recording


secretary; H. G. Allbright, financial secretary; A. L. Arnold, treasurer. These officers and the following named gentlemen constituted the charter members: J. E. P. Dodd, Orange Brewer, W. J. Anderson, S. Propp, F. W. Johnson, G. O. Lane, J. T. Cannon, J. B. Freshette, H. L. Buryanek, C. L. Blood, J. S. Johnson, M. G. Snodgrass, George Shults, W. F. Arnold, F. W. Minor, J. W. Spencer, Ezra Jones and Charles R. Gait. Although the youngest fraternal organization in Kouts, the lodge is the strongest, both financially and in point of numbers. In 1912 there were fifty members. W. N. Anderson was at that time noble grand; B. A. Reinker, vice grand; R. S. Berlen, recording secretary; W. Cunningham, financial secretary; P. D. Noland, treasurer. The regular meetings of the lodge are held weekly, on Thursday evening.

In 1851 the ladies degree was established in connection with Odd Fellowship. Members of this degree were originally known as Daughters of Rebekah, but in recent years they have adopted the name of "Rebekahs." To this degree the wives, daughters and other near female relatives of Odd Fellows are eligible, and the Rebekahs form an auxiliary to the lodge in charitable work, etc.

The oldest Rebekah lodge in Porter county is Charity Lodge, No. 64, the charter of which is dated May 17, 1871, and signed by W. H. De Wolf as grand master and E. H. Barry as grand secretary. Of this lodge the charter members were: Milan Cornell, Cordelia F. Cornell, Alfred Kellogg, J. B. Kellogg, Edna L. Whitcomb, E. M. Whitcomb, H. A. Upthegrove, Mrs. H. A. Upthegrove, Azariah Freeman, A. Freeman, R. Bell, Jr., Adelia Bell, J. N. Bradley, Mrs. J. N. Bradley, George Nicholson, Clarinda Nicholson, T. T. Maulsby, Mrs. T. T. Maulsby, Nathan Coppock, Mrs. Nathan Coppock. On July 1, 1912, the lodge reported a membership of 172, with the following officers: Lydia Bornholt, noble grand; Mary Olds, vice grand; Maude Harris, corresponding secretary; Mina Hesser, financial secretary; Anna Dean, treasurer.

Hypatia Rebekah Lodge, No. 492, was organized at Wheeler on September 25, 1895, with the following charter members: Addison Boyce, Maria C. Boyce, William Elliott, Mary Elliott, Joseph Barnes, Martha


Barnes, Charles Walsh, Lavina Walsh, L. K. Johnston, Mary A. John-ston. In the organization of the lodge Mrs. Maria C. Boyce was chosen the first noble grand; Lavina Walsh, vice grand; Mary A. Johnston, secretary and Martha Barnes, treasurer. The lodge was instituted by P. A. Marquart, of Valparaiso, who was at that time district deputy. The growth of the lodge has been steady, and in 1912 it had a membership of fifty-three. The officers for 1912 were: Mrs. Bessie V. Dobbins, past noble grand; Mrs. May Tatlock, noble grand; Miss Grace Gott, vice grand; Miss Hazel Marquart, corresponding secretary; Miss Grace Johnston, financial secretary; Mrs. Josie Marquart, treasurer. Regular meetings are held on the first, third and fifth Wednesdays of each month.

On July 3, 1905, Miriam Rebekah Lodge, No. 691, was instituted at Kouts with sixty-three charter members and: the following officers: Lettie Turner, noble grand; Sadie Nolan, vice grand; Katharine Hockett, financial secretary; Kennie Cunningham, recording secretary; Marie Pierce, treasurer. The work of instituting was done by Charity Rebekah Lodge, of Valparaiso, under the direction of C. M. Mackay, district deputy grand master, and the growth has been steady from the date of its organization.

Phoebe Rebekah Lodge, No. 706, located at Chesterton. was organized on March 15, 1907, with Edith Bock as noble grand; Bertha Lahayn, vice grand; Nellie Sherwood, recording secretary, and Mabel Pelham, financial secretary. In addition to these officers, the following were charter members: A. H. Bock, Charles Baylander, Ida Blachly, Tessie Benson, Lovina Demass, Charles Demass, Hattie Fuller, Lillie Hope, Beatrice Harper, Myrtle and Edna Knapp, Marcia Demass, Clyde Krausgrill, William and Myrtle Lahayn, Dora Demass, Jerry Marquart, Nora Monical, Anna Monical, Grace Pelham, Jane Quick, Emma and Louis Reglein, Cora Stephens, Martha and L. B. Shaner, Augusta and Joseph Stephens, Calvin and Maggie Shanks, Carrie Smith, Emma Schafer, Lulu Seymour, John and Theodore Stephens. In 1912 the lodge reported a membership of sixty-two. Regular meetings are held on the


second and fourth Thursdays of each month in the Odd Fellows' hall. The officers for 1912 were: Tessie Benson, noble grand; Merle Shaner, vice grand; Martha Shaner, secretary; Coral Richardson, treasurer.

Five government clerks - Justus H. Rathbone, William H. Burnett, David L. Burnett, Edward S. Kimball and Robert A. Champion - met in a small room in Washington, D. C., February, 15,1864, and listened to a ritual which had been prepared by Mr. Rathbone as the basis of a new fraternal society. This ritual, which was adopted by the five men, was founded upon the drama of Damon and Pythias, and it was proposed to call the new order of the Knights of Pythias. On the 19th four days after the first meeting, Washington Lodge, No. 1, Knights of Pythias, was instituted. Franklin Lodge, No. 2, was organized soon afterward, and on April 8, 1864, a grand lodge was established at Washington. At that time the country was in the throes of civil war and for a time the order did not make much headway. On August 1, 1865, Franklin Lodge was the only one in existence. Then came a period of prosperity and during the next ten years the new order had found a footing in nearly every northern and western state.

Valparaiso Lodge, No. 181, Knights of Pythias, was instituted on March 7, 1888, by Past Grand Chancellor H. H. Francis, of Michigan City, with twenty-three charter members, to wit: Henry Z. Caswell, P. C.; A. D. Bartholomew, C. C.; E. V. Arnold, V. C.; H. J. Upthegrove, Prel.; George S. Haste, M. of F.; Seth Eason, M. of E.; E. E. Droon, K. of R. and S.; J. H. Arnold, M. of A.; James McNay, I. G.; E. V. Willits, O. G., and W. H. Gardner, G. F. Sales, A. F. Heineman, G. H. Sweet, George Hankinson, C. N Thomas, H. B. Brown, F. A. Vroman, J. R. Pagin, John W. Elam, James G. Pomeroy, J. W. McClelland and C. S. Douglas. The lodge has been fairly prosperous and has a nice hall on the south side of Indiana avenue, between Washington and Lafayette streets, where regular meetings are held every Monday evening. In 1912 there were seventy-nine members and the officers of the lodge at that time were: Alvin C. Carpenter, C. C.; Joseph Wilgen, V. C.; William S. Lindall, Prel.; A. H. Reading, M. of W: Mark B. Rockwell, K.


of R. and S.; G. E. Bornholt, M. of F.; Charles H. De Witt, M. of C.; F. L. Faley, M. at A.; John W. McNay, W. B. Wasser and W. F. Ellis, trustees.

Hebron Lodge, No. 405, Knights of Pythias, was organized on August 2, 1894, when the following officers were installed: C. A. Childs, C. C.; B. F. Nichols, V. C.; F. S. Parmore, M. at A.; Hale Bates, Prel.; H. J. Sheldon, K. of R. and S.; Henry Hogan, M. of E.; J. R. Wilson, M. of F. In addition to the above officers, there were thirty-four charter members, namely: George C. Gregg, C. E. Lewis, John Carson, John Foster, J. S. Nelson, E. V. Pratt, A. J. Case, R. S. Kenny, G. E. Richardson, B. Leeman, M. J. Stinchfield, W. L. Ralston, W. J. Mulinex, F. Hawbrook, D. W. Root, F. Fuller, B. J. Edwards, H. Doyle, J. C. Smith, L. P. Scott, J. M. Fredericks, George Berdine, John Doyle, D. T. Dilley, O. H. Tredway, J. E. Carson, W. T. Wilson, George Margison, W. H. Wilson, K. B. Hubbard, S. H. Adams, Charles Kithcart, M. J. Brown and Edward Sigler. The lodge at Hebron is the strongest Knights of Pythias lodge in the county, having 134 members in 1912, at which time the officers were as follows: J. R. Wilson, C. C.; James Love, V. C.; E. O. Bagley, Prel.; F. E. Aylesworth, M. of W.; L. S. Bryant, K. of R. and S.; E. T. Wells, M. of F.; W. J. Mulinex, M. of E.; A. C. Ross, M. at A.; Ira Miller, I. G.; Clark Walton, O. G.; J. D. McAlpin, S. H. Adams and Jacob Wright, trustees. The regular meetings are held on Thursday evening of each week.

Thirty-four men assembled in a hall at Chesterton on Monday evening, May 25, 1896, and were organized into a lodge of the Knights of Pythias, known as Chesterton Lodge, No. 442. At that meeting the following officers were installed: A. J. Hazelton, C. C.; C. L. Burgess, V. C.; A. E. Greene, Prel.; C. W. Powers, M. of W.; E. W. Hawes, K. of R. and S.; P. A. Johnson, M. of E.; C. L. Haslett, M. of F.; T. J. Johnson, M. at A.; George E. Doke, I. G.; Arthur O. Peterson, O. G.; Besides these officers the following were enrolled as charter members: H. C. Weston, Charles E. Hillstrom, J. F. Thompson, Emil Zimmerman, Walter J. Soper, A. J. Brooker, B. J. Callahan, Edward Gustafson, R.


C. Hubbard, Frank E. Johnson, J. A. Johnson, John Stephens, Walter W. Warren, H. L. Ruggles, A. J. Bowser, Frank J. Johnson, C. J. Campbell, B. S. Wise, Harry Rogers, W. C. Sievert, H. J. Gotens, C. H. Rosenquist, Frank H. Brockmiller and George H. Harding. Weekly meetings are held Monday evening. In 1912 the lodge reported a membership of sixty-five, with Albert Swanson, C. C.; Sanford Culbertson, V. C.; C. H. Harvil, Prel.; H. A. Flynn, M. of W.; Arthur O. Peterson, K. of R. and S.;Roy C. Hubbard, M. of F.; C. L. Haslett, M. of E.; John Pillman, M. at A.; F. E. Johnson, I. G., and Carl Beilharz, O. G.

As in the case of the Freemasons and Odd Fellows, the Knights of Pythias have a degree to which their wives, sisters and daughters are eligible. This degree is known as the Pythian Sisters and the organizations are called temples instead of lodges. In Porter county there is but one society of the Pythian Sisters - Hebron Temple, No. 367. It was organized on January 25, 1910, with forty-five charter members. The regular meetings are held on the first and third Wednesdays of each month. In 1912 the membership was seventy-seven, and the officers at that time were as follows: Jetta Aylesworth, past chief; Diantha Rice, most excellent chief; Florence E. Hamilton, excellent senior; Mary Sweeney, excellent junior, Emma Ross, manager; Sara Henderson, protector; Mary Margison, outer guard; Sara McAlpin, mistress of records and correspondence; Ruby Wells, mistress of finance.

The Grand Army of the Republic, an organization of veteran soldiers and sailors who served in the Union army during the Civil war, was founded early in the year 1866 by Dr. B. F. Stephenson and Rev. W. J. Rudolph, of Illinois, the first post having been organized at Decatur, Illinois, April 6, 1866, and the first national encampment was held at Indianapolis, Indiana, beginning on the 20th of the following November. The motto of the order is "Fraternity, Commemoration and Assistance." Its objects are to aid the widows, orphans and disabled soldiers, collect and preserve relics, erect monuments and homes for old comrades who are unable to provide for themselves. The order is


divided into state departments, with a commander for each state, and the subordinate organizations are called posts.

On December 13, 1866, "Post No. 1, District of Porter, Department of Indiana," was organized. at Valparaiso by Henry Binnamon, who was a charter member of the first Grand Army organization at Indianapolis, and who was elected the first commander of the post at Valparaiso. Following is a list of the charter members of this first post in Porter county: L. B. Fifield, G. S. Haste, E. Peacock, William Jewell, A. T. Cross, William S. Odell, J. L. Snyder, F. M. Hamilton, W. S. Hornie, L. J. Needham, S. L. Bartholomew, Thomas Ward, W. H. Moist, J. V. Bevinger, William Reece, G. Jones, S. Kitchell, Clinton Frazier, Thomas McConnell, James Bell, Thomas Pratt, F. M. Salisbury, J. T. Heaton, Gilbert A. Pierce, R. A. Cameron, J. F. McCarthy, H. M. Buel, R. B. Brockway, C. C. S. Keetch, H. J. Upthegrove, J. B. Marshall, H. A. Brown and Henry Binnamon. After running for about three years, the post disbanded and no further attempt was made to organize a Grand Army post in the county until in 1882.

Chaplain Brown Post, No. 106, was organized at Valparaiso in October, 1882, with the following charter members: W. E. Brown, James J. Ferris, Russell D. Pelton, Harmon Baylor, John R. Mills, T. B. Louderback, J. F. McCarthy, Frank P. Thompson, David Dickson, E. M. Burns, A. Parks, J. F. Caster, John W. Elm, John Billado, William C. Wells, Lorenzo D. France, Harrison M. Keyes, E. T. Chester, Stephen Selman, I. C. B. Suman, Joseph M. Zee, Thomas M. Robinson, Ezra Furgeson, John G. Holiday, Frederick Gesser and John Furgeson. The post was named in honor of Rev. James C. Brown, for many years a resident of Valparaiso, who entered the army as chaplain of the Forty-eighth Indiana infantry and died in the service. From the time of its organization to June, 1912, the muster roll of the post shows 348 names. Many of these have answered the last roll call, others have moved away, and at the date above named the post had ninety members in good standing. Regular meetings are held on the first and third Saturdays of each month in Memorial Hall on Indiana avenue.


Walters Post, No. 229, Grand Army of the Republic, is located at Hebron and was organized on September 1 ,1883. The charter members were: William H. Adams, Jacob Alyea, George C. Gregg, Jacob Seigley, John C. McAlpin, William B. Dodridge, L. C. Pomeroy, James P. Downs, M. J. Sweet, James E. Bryant, H. W. Shafer, John Morrow and Benjamin Shoup. Seven of the original members are still living. In 1893 the post lost all its records and papers by fire, so that much pertaining to its early history was destroyed. Two years after the fire the number of members reached eighty-six, the largest at any time in the post's history, but in 1912 the membership was but nineteen, the others having answered the last roll call. Walters Post has always been active in looking after its sick and disabled, and has taken a prominent part on Memorial day in the decoration of graves of dead comrades. In 1912 George C. Gregg was commander of the post; Martin Nichols, senior vice commander; Fred Kern, junior vice commander; James P. Downs adjutant, and H. P. Wood quartermaster.

A. B. Wade Post, No. 208, was organized at Chesterton on July 14, 1883. John T. Taylor was the first commander; John C. Coulter, senior vice commander; Harrison H. Williams, junior vice commander; Charles Jackson, adjutant, and Martin Young, quartermaster. The charter members, in addition to the above named officers, were: Frank Bergstrom, Robert Lansing, John Williams, John B. Fuller, H. Green, Harvey Allen, Jacob Beck, Solomon Replogle and Hiram Knapp. Regular meetings are held on the first and third Saturdays of each month in Foresters' hall. Wade Post at one time had a large membership for a town the size of Chesterton, but death and removals had reduced it to fourteen members in good standing in 1912, when Robert S .Greer was commander and acting quartermaster; Clinton Williams, senior vice commander; H. H. Williams, junior vice commander; and G. A. Marquart, adjutant. In the cemetery at Chesterton there are ninety-six graves of departed comrades for this little remnant of the post to decorate on Memorial day each year. In 1912 the memorial services were conducted by the Sons of Veterans.


The Women's Relief Corps, an auxiliary to the Grand Army of the Republic, had its inception at Portland, Maine, in 1869, when the wives of some of the members of Bosworth Post of that city organized a local society for relief work. Other localities followed the example, and in 1879 representatives of these societies in several states met at Fitchburg, Massachusetts, and formed the national Women's Relief Corps. In 1883, when the Grand Army held its national encampment at Denver, Colorado ,the officers of that organization recognized the women's society as an auxiliary, and since that time nearly every Grand Army post in the country has had its Women's Relief Corps to work in conjunction with the old soldiers in caring for the distressed and conducting memorial exercises.

The Sons of Veterans, as the name indicates, is an organization of the sons of those who fought on the side of the North in the Civil war. Its objects are to perpetuate the recollection of the gallant deeds of their fathers, instill lessons of patriotism in the rising generation, collect and preserve war relics and historical documents, and care for the needy and distressed. The local organizations are called camps.

Porter Camp, No. 116, located at Valparaiso, was organized in the hall of Chaplain Brown Post, February 9, 1905, and was formally mustered in on March 14th, with forty-five charter members. R. J. Kitchen was the first commander; R. B. Ewing, senior vice commander; William Bozarth, junior vice commander; Clinton Jones, treasurer. Hon. Mark L. De Motte was present and delivered an address. On August 1, 1905, J. Kitchen, of the Valparaiso camp, was appointed judge advocate of the Indiana division by Commander T. W. Blair, of Fort Wayne. The officers of the camp in 1912 were: William N. Muster, commander; John R. Jones, senior vice commander; Matthew Brown, junior vice commander; Richard Smith, secretary, and Julius E. Bornholt, treasurer. The twentieth annual state encampment was held at Valparaiso, June 6th and 7th, 1906, when the ceremonies included a parade from the Lafayette Hotel to Memorial Hall, where an address of welcome was made by Mayor Spooner, which was responded to by W. W. Huffman. At this


encampment J. H. Arnold was elected senior vice commander for the state organization, and John McNay was chosen as a delegate to the national encampment. Company B, First Indiana Sons of Veterans Reserves, was formed at Valparaiso on May 13, 1908, with thirty-five members and the following officers: Richard Smith, captain; F. T. Fetterer, first lieutenant; Julius E. Bornholt, second lieutenant; Roy Chester, first sergeant; Everett Drapier, second sergeant; John Jones, third sergeant. The company was mustered in by Maj. R. F. Ducomb, of South Bend, after which a banquet was served at Dudley's cafe. For a time drills were held regularly. Then the novelty wore off, interest decreased, and the company dropped out of existence without the formality of disbanding.

On November 19, 1910, Shiloh Camp, No. 54, Sons of Veterans, was organized at Hebron, with the following charter members: C. F. Leeka, A. R. McAlpin, J. J. Nichols, C. M. Filer, James M. Wilson, John T. Sparling, J. M. Morrow, S. E. McGinnis, G. E. Wood, C. J. Hobbs, James C. Williams, H. E. Thompson, John W. Patterson, Ross Stewart, J. P. Wood, C. C. Shoupe, F. E. Nichols, R. M. Hamilton, A. H. Gibbs, Vere and Bert Aylesworth, E. A. Edmonds, Lee Morrow, James McKnight and George Davis. This camp holds its regular meetings on the last Friday evening of each month at G. A. R. hall. In 1911 Walters Post, G. A. R., presented the camp with a fine silk flag, bearing the legend: "Shiloh Camp, No 54, Div. of Ind." Forty-one names were on the membership roll in 1912, when the officers of the camp were as follows: C. M. Filer, commander; J. J. Nichols, senior vice commander; C. F. Leeka, junior vice commander; A. R. McAlpin, secretary; J. P. Wood, treasurer. There is also a camp of the Sons of Veterans at Chesterton.

A year or so after the close of the Civil war a few "good fellows" in the city of New York formed the habit of spending their evenings together "singing songs, swapping yarns, and in other ways passing the time pleasantly." A permanent club of fifteen members was formed in 1867 and the name of "The Jolly Corks" was adopted. The following year Charles S. Vivian, a young Englishman, suggested the propriety of


turning the club into a secret order. His proposal met with approval, but it was decided that the old name was not appropriate and a committee was appointed to select a new one. This committee happened to visit the old Barnum museum, where they saw an elk and learned something of its habits which were regarded as worthy of emulation, and this led to the adoption of the name "Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks." There are no state grand lodges in the Elks, each lodge being in direct communication with the supreme grand lodge, and only one lodge is permitted in a town or city. The motto of the order is: "The faults of our brothers we write upon the sands; their virtues upon the tablets of love and memory."

Valparaiso Lodge, Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, was organized on May 19, 1899, with twenty-three charter members. On February 3, 1904, the hall and club rooms at the northwest corner of Main and Lafayette streets were formally dedicated by Joseph T. Fanning, of Indianapolis, at that time the grand exalted ruler. Visitors were present from Hammond, Crown Point, Warsaw, Michigan City and other places. In 1912 the lodge numbered 285 members, with the following officers: J. S. Bartholomew, exalted ruler; W. P. Clifford, esteemed leading knight; Rolla Sievers, esteemed loyal knight; William Picard, esteemed lecturing knight; B. F. Sheffield, esquire; J. Albe, secretary; J. S. Wilcox, inside guard; James Griswold, tiler. This is the only lodge of Elks in Porter county.

In 1882 Rev. Michael J. McGivney, a Roman Catholic priest of New Haven, Connecticut, formulated a plan for the organization of a secret order to be known as the Knights of Columbus, the basic principles of which are "charity, unity, fraternity and patriotism." Any practical Catholic of the male sex over eighteen years of age is eligible for admission to membership. Local societies are called councils. Four local councils may form a state council, delegates from the various state councils making up the national council. At the beginning of the year 1912 there were about 1,500 local councils in the United States, with a membership of some 300,000, and since the organization the order has


dispensed over $5,000,000 in benefits. The headquarters have always been maintained at New Haven.

Valparaiso Council, No. 738, was organized on New Year's day in 1903, when a number of Catholic gentlemen met in St. Paul's music hall and elected the following officers: Grand Knight, F. W. Wager; Deputy Grand Knight, Thomas Clifford; Chancellor, Frank Gallagher; Recording Secretary, Thomas Hartford; Financial Secretary, Louis Horn; Treasurer, Thomas Howard; Lecturer, Daniel E. Kelly; Chaplain, Rev. L. A. Moench. The council was fully instituted on Sunday, March 22, 1903, when a sermon was preached by Rev. W. S. Hogan, the first degree was conferred by the South Bend degree team; the second degree by a team from Fort Wayne, and the third degree by Prof. John S. Ewing, of Notre Dame University. In the evening the members of the new council and their guests partook of a banquet at the armory. In 1912 the officers of the council were: C. P. Daly, grand knight; James Meagher, deputy grand knight; E. H. Heilstedt, chancellor; Harry Latour, financial secretary; Anthony Meyers, recorder; James Blaney, treasurer; D. E. Kelly, advocate; P. W. Clifford, trustee. Other secret and benevolent orders represented in the county are the Modern Woodmen of America, the Knights of the Maccabees, the Royal Arcanum, the Fraternal Order of Eagles, and the Independent Order Foresters of America.

The Modern Woodmen have camps, or lodges, at Valparaiso, Chesterton, Hebron and Kouts. Valparaiso Camp, No. 4654, holds its regular meetings on the first and third Fridays of each month in Woodman hall. Chesterton Camp, No. 5244, meets in the Odd Fellows hall on the second and fourth Fridays of each month. Hebron camp, No. 7488, meets in the Knights of Pythias hall on the second and fourth Wednesdays of each month, and Kouts Camp, No. 4572, holds its meetings on the second and fourth Tuesdays in O'Brien's hall.

Some years ago a number of Foresters seceded from the old order of that name and organized the Foresters of America. Valparaiso became the headquarters of the new order, and courts have been organized


at Valparaiso, Chesterton, Hebron, Kouts and Wheeler. Court Valparaiso, No. 7, was organized on September 28, 1889, with thirteen charter members, and in 1912 the membership had been increased to 257. It meets on the second and fourth Fridays of each month in the Knights of Pythias hall on Indiana avenue. Court Kouts, No. 8, meets in O'Brien's hall on the first and third Tuesdays of each month. Court Hebron holds its regular meetings in the Knights of Pythias hall on the first and third Tuesdays of each month; Court Chesterton, on the first and third Thursdays in the Odd Fellows hall, and Court Wheeler, No. 20, in its own hall on the second and fourth Thursdays of each month. The last named court owns its own hall and in 1912 reported sixty-six members, having lost but one member by death since its organization.

Lodges of the Knights of the Maccabees are called tents. Valparaiso Tent, No. 73, meets on the first and third Fridays of each month in the Knights of Pythias hall. Chesterton Tent, No. 21, meets on the first and third Thursdays in its own hall, and Hebron Tent, No. 148, meets on the first and third Fridays in the Knights of Pythias hall. The officers of Valparaiso Tent for 1912 were: W. H. Wareham, commander; L. T. Campbell, lieutenant commander; A. W. McDaniel, record keeper; A. A. Jones, sergeant; L. M. Chumley, chaplain; Elias Jones, master at arms; V. Schenck, sentinel, and William Haberkorn, picket.

Valparaiso Aerie, Fraternal Order of Eagles, was organized on November 11, 1905, with sixty-four charter members and the following officers: A. J. Dick, past worthy president; John Longshore, worthy president; Charles R. Bornholdt, worthy vice president; George Pearce, conductor; E. L. Hubbell, secretary; Fred Ebersoll, chaplain. The aerie was organized by Worthy President Anderson, assisted by members from the aeries at Laporte and Hammond. After the ceremonies of institution, a banquet was served at Dudley's.

After the close of the Spanish-American war and the return of several of the volunteer regiments from the Philippine islands, those who had served during the conflict organized the Spanish-American War Veterans' Association. Kindred organizations were formed in various parts


of the country, and on April 18, 1904, the various societies were merged into one, under the name of the United Spanish War Veterans. On July 16, 1903, nine months before the merger, Specht-Bremmer Post of the Spanish-American War Veterans was organized at Valparaiso, with Henry Schlosbohm as commander; Winfield Scott, senior vice commander; Earl C. Dowdell, junior vice commander; Walter C. Baum, adjutant; Arthur E. Sager, quartermaster; Harry E. Bortell, chaplain; August Larson, officer of the guard; John Bell, officer of the day. The membership roll was signed by eighteen young men, all Porter county boys who enlisted for service in the War with Spain.

On June 6, 1906, a lodge of the Knights and Ladies of Honor was instituted in Valparaiso .This order admits persons of both sexes between the ages of eighteen and fifty-five years, and pays death benefits in sums of $250, $500, $1,000 and $2,000. The officers of the Valparaiso lodge installed at the time of the organization were: Mrs. William Fox, past protector; Dr. E. H. Powell, protector; Mrs. Henry Latour vice protector; Miss Lottie Moler, secretary; William Fox, treasurer; Mrs. Orris Fisher, chaplain; J. C. Moore, guide; Mrs. Ira Cowdrey, guardian; Dr. E. H. Powell, medical examiner; Mrs. Dora Starke and Henry Latour, trustees.

Numerous societies, clubs and associations of a social or civic nature have been organized in Valparaiso at different periods in the city's history. Among these may be mentioned the Valparaiso Women's Club, which numbers about 200 members, including the leading educational and society women of the city. It is divided into four departments - literature, art, music and home economics-each in charge of some member or committee of the club. Late in 1905 a movement was started for the acquisition of a club house, in which the women could establish permanent quarters, but the movement finally resulted in failure. Consequently the club meetings are held at the residences of the members, in church parlors, and on special occasions in some public hall.

The Civic Improvement Association, composed of the public spirited women of Valparaiso, was incorporated, in May, 1905, with the following


board of directors. Frelove M. Elam, Jessie Letherman, Estella J. Gardner, Mary L. Zimmerman, Golde Lowenstine, Etta Heineman, Kate L. Agnew, Ada L. Lederer, Ina Cunningham, Sarah P. Kinsey, Clara S. De Motte, Myra Heard, Fannie S. McGill, Charlotte Crumpacker, Rose C. Smith and Maud S. Powers. This was an incorporated association without any capital stock, the object being to interest the citizens in cleaning up and beautifying the city. If money were needed for any purpose it was raised by subscription and voluntary contributions. The flower beds in the court-house square are the work of the Civic Improvement Association, and numerous dark spots have been made lighter, dirty alleys and back yards made clean under the teaching and influence of its members.

At a meeting held in the mayor's office in the city of Valparaiso on the evening of July 6, 1905, the Municipal Study Association was formed. W. E. Pinney was elected president; S. C. Billings, vice president; Mark L. Dickover, secretary, and F. A. Turner, treasurer. The objects of the association were declared to be "to study municipal problems and endeavor to apply the results of the investigations for the good of the city." Some of the subjects to be studied were designated as taxation, improvements of streets, building of sidewalks, reduction of the bonded debt, etc. The second meeting of the association was held on July 13th, when the name was changed to the Men's Civic Study Association, in order to prevent it from being confused with the Civic Improvement Association of the women. At this meeting a series of by-laws, or rules, were adopted, in which the purposes were stated as being "the study and better understanding of the science of government, and the promotion of economical and efficient administration of county, township and city government." It was also declared that the association should be nonpartisan in character, the individual members exercising the right of suffrage according to their opinions. For a time the association wielded considerable influence toward the improvement of the streets, etc., but, like most organizations of this character, it finally perished for lack of interest in the work it had started out to do.


Other clubs that had existed at some time in Valparaiso, or are still in existence, were the Mathesis Club, the Saturday Night Club, the Harriet Beecher Stowe Club, and the William Henry Harrison Chapter, Daughters of the American Revolution ,which held its first open meeting on Monday evening, November 2, 1903, at the Presbyterian Church parlors.

One of the most unique social organizations ever formed in the county is the "Thirteen Club." It had its origin in the fall of 1896, when thirteen young men met, partly by chance and partly by understanding, in the office of Dr. A. J. Homfield, and joined in eating a "pig dinner" in a room in the rear of the doctor's office. The thirteen were: Dr. A. J. Homfield, L. G. Benney, Ernie Finney, Leon Wheeler, Leslie R. Skinner, Roy Wheeler, Gus Jones, Frank B. Winslow, L. H. Pierce, E. G. Osborne, Charles G. Foster, F. G. Ketchum and Dr. C. R. Kuderling. All were at the time unmarried. It was agreed to form a permanent organization, with the understanding that as the members got married, they were to entertain the other members at their homes. For fifteen years the arrangement has been sacredly observed, and once a year the members of the club assemble to partake of a dinner provided by one of their number. The dinner for 1911 was provided by Leslie R. Skinner. If thirteen is an unlucky number, its ill luck seems to have failed in the case of this club, for of the original members all are living except Dr. A. J. Homfield, and when they meet at their annual festival it is generally remarked that Fate has been kind to them, as most of them enjoy good health and are well-to-do in a financial way.


CHAPTER I - General Features
CHAPTER II - Aboriginal Inhabitants
CHAPTER III - Settlement and Organization
CHAPTER IV - Internal Improvements 
CHAPTER V - Educational Developments
CHAPTER VI - Military History
CHAPTER VII - Township History
CHAPTER VIII - Township History (continued)
CHAPTER IX - The City of Valparaiso
CHAPTER X - Financial and Industrial
CHAPTER XI - The Professions
CHAPTER XII - Societies and Fraternities
CHAPTER XIII - Religious History
CHAPTER XIV - Miscellaneous History
CHAPTER XV - Statistical Review

Transcribed by Steven R. Shook, November 2011


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