Long before Oziel Grand Chapter, Order of the Eastern Stare, Inc., Prince Hall Affiliation, was instituted, many Master Masons were concerned about their Wives, Daughters, Mothers, Sisters, and Widows living in the State of New Jersey without Masonic Protection from the State of N.J.
In the City of Camden, New Jersey, on December 28, 1911, the Most Worshipful Grand Master, Thomas H. Murray, in his Annual Address, stated that he thought a great feature, worthy of notice, has been the organization of the Order of Eastern Star in New Jersey. This organization has previously existed through the courtesy of the State of New York. It found recognition under its wind, but not under its own State of New Jersey.
"Said Brother Murray that it seemed fitting to him that New Jersey, from a standpoint of duty, should protect its own fireside and inasmuch as these women felt to tend their efforts to the improvement of home, it is our duty to recognize their work by formally recognizing them in their fraternal relations to us."
In the afternoon of December 29, 1911, the status of the Order of Eastern Star to the Grand Lodge was given by Brother P.T. Colding. Upon conclusion of his remarks the following resolution was adopted:
That the Most Worshipful United Grand Lodge of F. & A.M. recognizes that there should be an organization to which where the Wives, Daughters, Mothers, Sisters, and Widows can become members, in order to bring a closer social relation between the members of the Symbolic Degrees. There is no better organization for this purpose.
Therefore, be it resolved that the Most worshipful United Grand Lodge of F. & A.M. extend to the Grand Chapter of Eastern Star in this State, the hand of recognition and will be glad to have it known that the Order of Eastern Star in this State shall hereafter be considered as an auxiliary body of this Most Worshipful United Grand Lodge of F. & A.M. of New Jersey.
At this time there was existing in the State of New Jersey two Grand Chapters of Eastern Star, their origin was involved in obscurity, but in North Jersey there was an Electa Grand Chapter, Order of Eastern Star with Sister M. Daniels of Jersey City as Grand Matron and in South Jersey, a Crystal Grand Chapter of Eastern Star with Sister Rebecca Bush of Atlantic City as Grand Matron. With this situation existing something had to be done, to bring them together. Under Most Worshipful Grand Master, Thomas Riley, a committee was appointed to adjust the difference between the two Grand Chapters of Eastern Star in the State of New Jersey and also to effect a union of these bodies.
On June 24, 1913, in Jersey City, New Jersey, Crystal Grand Chapter and Electra Grand Chapter were invited to meet with this Committee. After a thorough discussion and interesting talks on the necessity of union, a motion was made to abolish the two chapters and be made into one Grand Chapter, under a new name and that the Grand Officers of the two Grand Chapters should be received and known as Past Grand Officers according to their stations in the new united Grand Chapter, of the Order of Eastern Star. The motion carried.
The following officers were nominated and elected: L.R. Palmer Berry, Grand Matron; W.J. Douglass, Grand Patron; Gertrude Mills, Grand Associate Matron; Laura Johnson, Grand Conductress; Sarah Smith, Grand Associate Conductress; Alicia M. Holbert, Grand Secretary; Laura Thomas, Grand Treasurer. Those officers were installed by Past Grand Matron, Sister Alice Campbell of Eureka Grand Chapter of New York Jurisdiction assisted by Sister B. DeTuscano, Grand Marshall of Eureka Grand Chapter, of New York. Oziel Grand Chapter, Order of Eastern Star was instituted with a Charter and Seal from Eureka Grand Chapter of New York.
Oziel Grand Chapter - Order of the Eastern Star
Prince Hall Affiliation for the Jurisdiction of New Jersey
Oziel Grand Chapter Centenarians
These members have been blessed to reach the age of 100 years plus. Oziel Grand Chapter began celebrating this wonderfully distinguished group of members during the administration of Sister Amelita B. McDowell, PGWM and Brother Andrew Burroughs, PGWP. A plaque was placed on the wall of the Grand East to honor their milestones.
Some of original members have passed on and others have joined this illustrious group. Oziel Grand Chapter will continue to honor our gloriously blessed sisters and brothers.
- Sister Gertrude Newsome Member of Atlantic Chapter No. 3
- Sister Catherine Middleton, Member of Atlantic Chapter No. 3
- Sister Annie Valentine,PM member of Bethlehem Chapter No. 41
- Sister Lewvenia Porter, PM Member of St. John Chapter No. 12
- Sister Ernestine Thomas, PM Member of Trinity Chapter No. 14
- Sister Lorainetta Stennett, PM Member of Queen of Sheba Chapter No. 4 *
- Sister Henrietta Stowell, PM Member of Trinity Chapter No. 14 *
- Sister Camillla Brown, Past Matron Member of Ionic Chapter No. 15*
- Brother Leon Jammot, Member of St. John Chapter No. 12 *
- Brother John King, PDGL member of Pride of the East No. 48 *
- Sister Ruby Jones, member of Pride of the East No. 48 *
- Sister Vashti Kearny, member of Pride of the East No. 48*
These Sisters and Brothers will receive an invitation to attend Grand Session, gratis (without charge). They will received three nights stay, access to all evening events, and free lunch each day. They will have their names engraved on bronze plates and affixed to a plaque that will be hung in Oziel's office at the Grand East.