The Trustees at their last meeting arranged for placing a new steel ceiling in the entrance halls and otherwise improving the same, all of which was badly needed. A full report of such improve

ment will be rendered by the Trustees.

In some jurisdictions the members of the fraternity have formed an art association, their object being to improve and adorn their temple. Would it not be a good idea for the Masons of our cities and state to form such an association in connection with their Library building, to see to its improvement and decoration, to the securing of fine paintings, statuary, and otherwise beautifying their building and making it attractive to all visitors?


The insurance on Library building and contents, with the tornado insurance, making a total of $30,000, expires July 14th next.

This insurance, placed under instruction of the Trustees, was written for a period of three years. If insured for five years a still lower premium can be secured.

We call attention to the matter that it may be acted upon, if deemed best, or left to the incoming Trustees to take action thereon as they may see proper.

One of the policies of tornado insurance on the building having expired, we renewed the same for one year to make all uniform, paying for same from contingent fund.


During the year Grand Master Lambert has presented his portrait in pastel. Past Grand Master Bowen has promised his in time for the opening of the Grand Lodge, which will complete the series, and all prominently arranged in the library hall and gallery. While some of the older and wealthier Grand Lodges, as Massachusetts, New York, Pennsylvania, and California, can indulge in life-size oil paintings, we are glad to have the crayon or pastel.


The Museum and Art Departments are largely the contribution of friends who have from time to time added various articles of interest and beauty to the collection, many of which are of a Masonic nature.

In behalf of the fraternity, we would solicit anything bearing the mark of the craft upon it, such as old diplomas, dimits, seals, charts, medals, coins, aprons, etc., etc.


While it is impossible in a report of this kind to make special mention of the many donations to the Library during the year, we

cannot refrain from making an exception to what we consider by far the most extensive and valuable work of its kind ever published -we refer to the two elegant quarto volumes entitled, "Fifty Years of Masonry in California," edited by Brother E. A. Sherman, and presented (handsomely bound) with the compliments of Messrs. Spaulding & Co., the printers, and Messrs. Phillips Bros., the binders, of San Francisco.

These volumes are gems of the printer's art, elegantly illustrated with steel engravings of leading members of the fraternity in the "Golden State," and half-tones of the lodge-rooms, and other subjects of interest to the fraternity.

This work, with many other late donations and additions to the Library, have been placed in a special display case, and the attention of visiting brethren is called to the same.


We very much regret to see so many Masonic publications dying for the want of support, and especially do we regret the circumstance when the publication is a good, reliable one. Within the past year "The Kansas Freemason," which has been coming to us regularly for several years, fell into line with several other standard Masonic periodicals, which for the want of support had ceased to exist, and which received honorable mention in previous reports. Every large jurisdiction should be able to support at least one good, reliable Masonic publication, and every Master Mason ought to be a subscriber to at least one.

Last year we heralded with delight the appearance of "The Signet" as the only exponent of Freemasonry in South Dakota, but, alas! its career was brief; it flourished for six months and then took its position among the line of its illustrious predecessors, and for the same cause. Brother Ames, the editor, worked hard to keep the Signet alive, and so anxious was he that every brother Mason in the jurisdiction should have the benefit of its columns that he offered to send the same free to any brother unable to subscribe.

The "American Tyler," of Detroit, has changed management, but we are happy to note that it retains its former position among the first Masonic periodicals in the land.

Another notable change has taken place in this department, in that the "Masonic Review," of Cincinnati, and the "Voice of Masonry," of Chicago, have consolidated under the name of "Masonic Voice and Review," and gives us in a combined form two of the oldest and best known Masonic publications in the country, with headquarters at Chicago.

Among the new aspirants for Masonic honors we would enroll the following:

"Acacia," Lincoln Nebraska; first issue, June, 1899.

"Ashlar." Detroit, Michigan; first issue, May, 1899.

"Kansas Craftsman," Wichita, Kansas; first issue, May, 1900.

"The Freemason of New England," Boston, Massachusetts; first issue, January, 1900.

"The Forty-Seventh Problem," Chicago, Illinois; first issue, October, 1899.

"The Masonic News," Peoria, Illinois; first issue, November, 1899— All of which have found a welcome place upon our shelves, and we hope for their success.


Last year we spoke of the increased interest in the Library, and the large increase of readers of Masonic literature in our state. We again congratulate the Iowa brethren in this respect. From the large number of letters received from brethren during the year we feel that they are appreciating more and more the advantages of their Library. Frequently the same lodge has had several packages of books sent them, and the same have been scattered among the members for thirty to sixty and ninety days, and exchanged among themselves. Numerous letters received show that the loan of these books is appreciated by those using them. In several instances we have secured a half a dozen copies of some special work in order to supply the demand for it.


During the year the Library has been in receipt of but two lodge histories, both centennial, and in large, handsome volumes:

Montgomery Lodge, Milford, Massachusetts, 1797-1897; presented February 5th, 1900, by ten Past Masters of the lodge.

Centennial History of Apollo Lodge, No. 13, Troy, New York; presented by Brother Patterson, of the Rock Island Arsenal.

In previous reports we have referred with pleasure to the lodge histories of Maine and Virginia, whose enterprising brethren inaugu rated the work, which has of late seemed to decline.

As several of our Iowa lodges have reached their semi-centennial mark, it is a pity that some of them, or some member thereof, could not inaugurate the work in Iowa.


The work of this association is so fully in accord with our own, though on a broader sphere, that we cannot ignore, nor would we, the meeting held in this city last fall. The Deputy Grand Secretary opened to the association the Library building, and gave to the members and our citizens interested in library work a reception in the building.

Iowa has long been known as the state of the least illiteracy of any of the states of the Union, but while one of the last to move energetically in the great library movement, has in the past few

years entered upon the work of establishing public libraries in our cities and towns, and will ere long come to the front in this department of disseminating knowledge among the people.

The attendance was large, and the meeting in every respect proved & grand success, under the efficient management of President Johnson. The action of our last general assembly in creating a Library Commission was the direct result of the efforts in that behalf by this association.


The Library has recently been complimented with two very fine volumes made especially for us by the manufacturers, showing a system of loose leaf ledger account books-one of the special features being that the ledger contains only live accounts, while the second, or transfer volume contains the accounts of those whose membership has for any reason ceased in the lodge. This system is used also for historical records in like manner, and is one that commends itself to our lodges, and does away with the extensive and cumbersome books that many have been using. We take pleasure in commending the same to all interested in keeping accounts of members, and believe they will find in these volumes much of special value and interest to them in their work. They are coming into use rapidly among the leading fraternal organizations of the country, by commercial houses, banks, and all classes of business firms, and we trust they will be speedily introduced into our lodges. The volumes will be where they may be examined during the week.


During the fall of last year we visited the east on business, and took occasion to visit and spend some time in the Library of the Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania. The Library occupies a large hall on the first floor of their magnificent temple. The Grand Lodge has substituted a competent librarian, educated for the work in the great library school at Albany, in charge of Melville Dewey, who has done more for library work in all its departments than any other of our library workers. We found this a great improvement over the former plan of an incompetent library committee, and the result was very marked and observable to any one acquainted (as we were) with the former inefficient management.

The Grand Lodge manifested its increased interest by decorating the hall in a magnificent manner, at a cost of over ten thousand dollars upon the walls alone. If the Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania can spend such a princely sum in alone beautifying their Library hall, how much can or will the Grand Lodge of Iowa spend in erecting the much needed addition to our present building, so crowded that much of what we have cannot be made available for use?

The librarian has classified the material at hand (which we cannot do for want of appreciation and the means) and placed in cases

for view much valuable material heretofore hidden out of sight. For the first time we saw the originals of the early (first) lodge records of Masonry in the new world, fac-similes of which have been printed, and may be seen in one of our cases containing old and rare documents.

We were specially pleased to note the great change wrought in that old Library, and congratulate both the librarian and the Grand Lodge, the latter for having woke from its "Rip Van Winkle" sleep, and shall expect to herald still further improvements under the new regime.


The first book-seller of Europe, yea of the world at any period of its history, recently died in London, England. A native of Prussia, he had served his time in his native land, and then sought a wider sphere of usefulness, locating, half a century ago, in London, from whence his influence extended the world over. No great library anywhere but has felt the influence of his knowledge, his labors, and assistance, and we gladly make "honorably mention" of our personal indebtedness and the indebtedness of this Library to him.

He was the best posted man in old and rare books and manuscripts of any man of the century. So many rareties as he procured can no where be found united in a single assemblage. His treasures of press and binding were truly marvelous. He loved books and all who loved books. His kindness and generosity to all were truly commendable, and he loved to aid those in founding and building up libraries, especially of old and rare books. He was incomparably the best informed, most munificent, and most liberal book-seller of this or any age, and left a collection worth many hundreds of thousands of dollars, which may serve to enrich many of our great public libraries.

Generations may come and go before his equal in knowledge and usefulness in literature may come to bless the reading world.

IN MEMORY OF BROTHER JAMES MORTON, PAST GRAND COMMANDER. While this report is in press Mrs. Morton, of this city, the widow of Past Grand Commander James Morton, who all through life was a warm friend of the Library, sends to us her husband's Masonic books, and presents also some valuable art works, especially two fine volumes entitled, "Edition De Grand Luxe Une Centaine De Peintres -The Works of One Hundred Great Masters (Engraved) with Descriptive Text," in memory of her late husband, whose love for the order, which he served long and faithfully, is well known not only to the Masons of Iowa but to the Masons of the country. A more extended notice of this valuable donation will be given in an early number of the Library Bulletin.

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