In 1966, forty-two Master Masons, in good and regular standing, of Constituent Lodges under the jurisdiction of the Grand Lodge A.F. & A.M. of the State of Oklahoma, petitioned the Grand Master M∴W∴ Bro. J. Blan Loflin for a Dispensation to form a Lodge of Research in the State of Oklahoma. It was the stated desire of the petitioners:
“to serve Freemasonry in general, and Oklahoma Masonry in particular, by means of collecting historical data and materials, for the study of any and all phases of Masonic teachings, other than the conferral of degrees, and for other good and beneficial purposes usually associated with Research Lodges.”
A dispensation was granted by Grand Master Loflin on July 2nd, 1966 and the Lodge was formed and held its first meeting on August 13th, 1966 in Guthrie, Oklahoma. There were fifty-two members and visitors in attendance at this first meeting, which was called to order by the Grand Master.
On February 15th, 1967, at its Annual Communication held in Guthrie, Oklahoma, the Grand Lodge A.F. & A.M. of the State of Oklahoma granted a Charter to the Oklahoma Lodge of Research, with 116 names appearing as Charter Members.
On March 11th, 1967, a Special Communication of the Grand Lodge A.F.& A.M. of the State of Oklahoma was called by the Grand Master M∴W∴ Bro. J. Quimby Wilson and held in Guthrie, Oklahoma. At this Special Communication, the Oklahoma Lodge of Research was constituted and its officers installed by the Junior Past Grand Master M∴W∴ Bro. J. Blan Loflin.
According to its original By-Laws:
“The Oklahoma Lodge of Research is organized to promote, encourage, preserve and foster research and study, for the purpose of spreading Masonic Light and Knowledge… [Its] purpose … is to collect, study and prepare items on Masonic or closely related subjects, and preserve the same in the archives of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of the State of Oklahoma.”
The Charter Members of the Oklahoma Lodge of Research were to be guided by four stated purposes and four stated objectives:
- To provide a center and bond of union for Masonic students of Oklahoma.
- To attract intelligent Masons to its meetings in order to imbue them with a love for research in Masonic matters pertaining to Oklahoma.
- To submit the discoveries or conclusions of students and researchers to the judgement and criticism of their fellows by means of papers read in the Lodge.
- To publish special studies for the benefit of the Craft in general and Oklahoma Masons in particular.
- To discover, rescue, record and preserve from the loss and oblivion the story of the early Masonic beginnings in Oklahoma.
- To assemble a library of publications of general interest to Masonic students and of special interest to Oklahoma Masons.
- To establish a museum along the same lines as those indicated for the library.
- To collect and correlate material and information for the History of Oklahoma Masonry.
SO MOTE IT BE!