Tuesday, April 1, 2014

17) John A. Patchett - Master - 1907,1908,1909

This is a work in process; the following information has been gathered so far:

In this Photo John was standing a few blocks from the Masonic Temple.  Is that a Square and Compass on his collar?

Bio from the   washingtonruralheritage.org  website:

John A. Patchett was born in 1863 in Ripon, Wisconsin and came to Ellensburg, Washington in 1888. He went to work for the Northern Pacific Railroad that same year. Ten years later, he became an engineer for the railroad. For 34 years, John pulled trains on divisions between Spokane and Ellensburg, Washington. He was a member of the Masonic Lodge for 50 years and was active in the Knights of Pythias and the Shriners. John retired from work in October 1933 at the age of 70 years. John and his wife Lena lived for many years in a large house on 9th Avenue. He died on September 23, 1944 at the age of 81 years.
 One very interesting artifact that we have from the term of Patchett as master - is his jewel:

This jewel is all hand made and has a very complicated construction with several 'blind rivets', engraving and custom enameling.  It is adorned with two genuine mine-cut sapphires and a ruby cut into a face.

This jewel is - for now - in a private collection.  It is not in the Temple, do not break in to steal it - as it is not there.  It is in a safety deposit box.

I've looked through the old minute books from 1907 to 1909  (he was master for three years - poor guy) and can not find specific references to the lodge commissioning a jewel, presenting it, or paying for it.

I did find that at the same meeting that his successor was installed as Master that there was a bill for $123.80 presented to the treasurer and paid.  There is no discussion as to what that amount was for.  That seems very odd as they discuss the water bill of $3.

Using an inflation calculator I figure that that bill was roughly $3,000.  I think that might be what it would cost to make this jewel today.  It would take a master jeweler at least a week to make it. 

But the time that Patchett served the Lodge was extremely important to the history of the Temple and the Lodge.  This was precisely the time period that the building was bought back by the Lodge, a return to prosperity if you will.  But then again, it seems even more confusing that they would have spent this much on a jewel for one brother.  Maybe he bought it himself?  At any rate, it does exist! 

John lived at 111 Est 9th Ave Ellensburg:
Patchett House (on right)

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