I found this great little passage about Caddo in The Story of Oklahoma Masonry “The First Seventy-Five Years of Symbolic Masonry, 1874 to 1949”, by J. Fred Latham, published in Guthrie, OK, 1978. It’s actually a quote from another work- “The History of Freemasonry in Oklahoma” by Brother Charles Creagor (1925?). It describes a meeting at Caddo on Monday, October 5, 1874.
“The Masonic Lodge at Caddo was housed in a small frame business block in the bustling little city. There was but one street worthy of the name, which paralleled the railroad tracks, and naturally, the buildings faced this street and the railroad.
Clouds of dust rose from the busy street. Puffs of a wheezy engine, the rattle and rumble of moving freight cars being switched into position, the grinding of iron wheels on wooden axles, the shouting of mule and oxen drivers, the clang of boxes and barrels being unloaded from the cars and dumped into heavy wagons, the neighing of horses tethered to the hitch racks which lined the crowded street, greeted two stern looking men as they dismounted in front of the principal hotel. The travelers had secured their horses, and removed their saddle bags, found it useless to shake the travel dirt from their gray shoulders. They strode into the dining room and partook of a hearty breakfast, then followed the directions of the interested landlord to the Masonic Hall.
It was readily seen from his garb, and smiling countenance that one was a minister. He was by no means a physical giant, yet his appearance commanded respect. The other, stately, dignified, erect, demanded second attention. One was the Rev. H.F. Buckner, missionary. The other was George Stidham, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of the Creek Nation.
…Finding the Lodge room locked, the two walked up the street to the modest newspaper printing office, and there introduced themselves to the editor (Granville McPherson). In turn they were introduced to William L. Byrd and August Hopping, who like themselves had made the difficult trip across the country horseback from the little town of Doaksville, seventy five miles east. After a short visit, they all returned to the Lodge room where there had assembled by that time, Brothers John B. Jones, C.M. Beck, the Senior and Junior Wardens of Caddo Lodge, and several brethren who had left their stores and offices to attend the advertised meeting.”
I’ll be writing more about the Masons and Grand Master, Granville McPherson very soon. My thanks to Linda McPherson for getting me started on this chapter of Caddo’s history!