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Knights of Pythias

Lincoln Lodge



The Order of Knights of Pythias is an international, non-sectarian fraternal order, established in 1864 in Washington, DC, by Justus H. Rathbone and was the first fraternal order to be chartered by an Act of Congress.  Domains of the Order exist in most states and provinces, and subordinate lodges are located in many cities and towns across the United States and Canada.


1875       Click to enlarge / scroll forward to see first Lincoln Lodge members (1875)

      Watertown Historical Society Collection  


1875       The first officers of Lincoln Lodge No. 20, Knights of Pythias shown in above frame.  These men were installed at special ceremonies on Nov. 24, 1875.  In the center of the picture is shown Abraham Lincoln, after whom the lodge is named.


In the top row, left to right: — J. W. Ganes, past chancellor; John Davis, chancellor commander; William Humphrey, vice chancellor; H. B. Quick, master at arms.

Third row: — J. B. May, keeper of records and seals; W. A. Beurhaus, master of finance;

Second row: — J. Wiggenhorn, master of exchequer; D. T. Evans, outer guard;

First row: — Robert Jones, Inner guard, and W. H. Babcock, member.


The two plaques shown in the first row give a record of the date of the institution of the lodge, Nov. 24, 1875, and the date its charter was granted, Dec. 6, 1876.



1913 Ribbon Badge



05 14       Large Delegation of Pythian Order Will Hold Ceremonials and Initiation.

Hurrah!  The Dokeys are coming!  500 strong!


The next ceremonial and initiation of El Wakodis Temple, D. O. K. K., of Milwaukee, the state temple of the Fifth degree Knights of Pythias, will be held in Watertown Decoration Day, the agreement for this important step having been made by local Dokeys and Royal Vizier Lawrence Jeger, Imperial Nawab Adolph Steindler and Secretary Charles Petran on the occasion of a visit of the Milwaukee men to this city on last week Wednesday evening.


It will be a gala day for Pythianism in Watertown.  When about a half a hundred of the Dokeys attended the big Pythian meeting last fall when Prospect lodge held its annual outing here, the Orientals gave only a partial demonstration of their ability to furnish the “glee” for a jubilee.  And there will be at least 300 of them here from all parts of the state on Decoration Day.


Milwaukee will send at least 250 Dokeys here on that day, and they will arrive in smaller delegations on all the trains during the day.  The celebration will start early in the afternoon and continue until it is all over, which will be quite some time.  Every arriving delegation will bring its quota of tyros, and before the initiation ceremonies are concluded, Dokeyism will be stronger than ever in Wisconsin.  Among the men in the public eye who will undergo the perils of the journey from “Tyro” to DokeyJand will be Ex- Mayor David Rose of Milwaukee and Mayor C. A. Kading of this city.  And there will be many others.


Watch for the big show.  The Dokeys are coming!    WG




“The Darktown Sunbeams from Pythian Land” will present their elaborate minstrel show at the Masonic temple Friday evening at 8:30 o'clock.  The entertainment has been in the process of preparation for many weeks.  It had been planned to hold the entertainment in the K. of P. hall in connection with a banquet, but the demand for tickets from friends of the organization became so great that the management decided to transfer the minstrel part of the entertainment to the Masonic temple and allow the public to attend.  The banquet, which is for members of the lodge and their ladies, will be held at a somewhat earlier hour than planned, to allow the “lamb shakers” and “bone rattlers” to bedeck themselves in their gilded raiment.  The supper call will sound at 6:30 o’clock.  Those coming later will be served with “bones only.”


A notable array of talent has been secured for the occasion.  Enrolled with the “lamb shakers” are Louis Thies, “Rix” Fuermann and A. C. Reuteler, while the “bone rattlers” for the other end of the circle are Joe Raue, O. V. Knaak and George W. Weber.  The two warring factions will be separated by a goodly array of non-combatants, members of the “Inner Circle of the Knights of Melody” as follows:  Joe Glaus, Max Ullrich, Frank Herzog, Harry Meilhan, Ary Keel, Charles Kohn, Herman Kramp, Arthur C. Kuenzi, Otto Kuenzi and Louis Mueller.  And the grand master of all ceremony and referee of all combats will be Interlocutor Adolph G. Knaak, genial purveyor of pink stickers at the post office.


New scenery will be placed upon a greatly enlarged stage for the occasion, making a suitable setting for a big minstrel company.  The K. of P. orchestra of twelve pieces will play.


A new outfit of coon songs, direct from the cotton belt, ballads, timely parodies and all the musical numbers that go to make minstrelsy the real American form of entertainment will be offered in plenty, together with a perfect fusillade of jokes, quips and quirks and local sideswipes that will keep the audience on edge.   WG



Members of Lincoln Lodge No. 20, Knights of Pythian, will entertain at the Turner Opera house on Friday evening.  Members of the families of Pythians and their friends will receive invitations, as will Pythian lodges of nearby towns.  Other fraternal orders of the city will also be asked to send delegations.  The lodge has been for some time planning to secure E. C. Gottry of Reedsburg for an evening’s entertainment and have taken advantage of the first date that could be mutually agreed upon.  Mr. Gottry is a past grand chancellor of the lodge and as grand lecturer made a nationwide reputation.   WG





            M. J. Krohn, Largest Dokey in “Captivity,” Creates No End of Amusement.


Every once in while “Old Glory” unbends himself from his customary dignity and recognizes another flag.  This was the case Tuesday evening here in Watertown during the Knights of Pythias convention.  The flag of the Pythians and the American flag stood at opposite ends of a square formed by admirers while the members of the drill team of Garfield lodge of Milwaukee gave an interesting drill.  In the flickering glare of red lights that had been stuck in posts nearby and to the applause of the onlookers these men went through a series of drills that must have required hours of patience and practice before the perfection that was shown was reached.  They marched in circles and squares, swung about and made complicated formations, marched in single and double file and after about twenty minutes of this marched to Fourth and Main streets where the drill was repeated.


Throngs crowded the street early in the evening eagerly awaiting a chance to see the big parade that had been announced.  The parade was only a few minutes behind schedule and soon swung by.  A herald announced the arrival of the procession by blowing a trumpet.


Dr. A. H. Hartwig acted as marshal and was aided by Leon King, Gilbert Bentzin, Dr. W. W. Arzberger, Hilmer Krueger, Charles A. Kading and Oscar Schmutzier.  They were followed by the Watertown City band, who furnished excellent music for the marchers.  


After them came the Pythian sisters in white suits.  Then came the members of the Garfield lodge of Milwaukee attired in the uniforms worn in the days of Damon and Pythias.  They presented quite a warlike appearance with the reflection of the lights thrown on the burnished tops of their shields.


The members of Racine, who came next, went through drill formations while marching.  Their uniforms were more modern consisting of a blue plumed helmet and black uniforms.  Several members from Milwaukee presented quite an appearance in their natty white suits.


The uniformed members of the Monroe Dokey band, at this part of the parade gave several selections of music.  One would have to look pretty far before he would be able to find such an amiable looking crowd of men as those who represented the El Wakodis brigands of Milwaukee.


Then came more uniforms of green and red with loads of gold braid.  Racine guard created quite a little comment on their unique uniforms of orange and red robes, as did the Beloit contingent also, who wore blue robes.  


The comedy element was not lacking.  One man walked in the parade with his coat worn inside out and with a disguise of burnt cork and whiskers.  And we mustn’t forget to mention that M. J. Krohn, the biggest member that the Dokeys can boast of, was also in the parade.  He weighs 400 pounds and he brought every pound of it along with him.  He occupied almost the whole seat of a motor car and presented quite an amusing figure in his eccentric costume.


The street was so crowded that many vantage points were secured. The windows of the upper stories of houses were filled and some even sought the position of telephone poles.  Some intrepid Pythians endeavored to spur their comrades, who were giving a drill to better efforts by sending off roman candles.  The sparks of these came near some of the occupants of the poles who were forced to seek shelter under an open umbrella that was hastily forced into service.


Members of the D.O.O.K. retired to Turner Opera house for their ceremonial at the end of the parade.


150 new members were initiated, among them being ex-Governor F. E. McGovern and Mayor Charles Mulberger.


Grand lodge sessions were held at 9 a. m. and at 2 p. m. which concluded the convention.             The Watertown Weekly Reader




















Knights of Pythias Hall, Lincoln Lodge No. 20, K of P, Violet Temple No. 20, Pythian Sisters 2948,



01 24       O. E. Carlson has begun his third term as chancellor commander of Lincoln Lodge No. 20, Knights of Pythias, following the annual installation of officers which was held at Castle Hall. Ray C. Norton, deputy grand chancellor, was the installing officer, assisted by Seth Perry, the deputy grand prelate, and Louis Doubleday, the grand master- at-arms. In addition to Mr. Carlson, the following officers were installed: C. F. LeMacher, vice chancellor; F .J. Weidemann, prelate; Carl E. West, master-of-work; Clarence G. Gloger, secretary; John D. Jones, financial secretary; James Plains, treasurer; Gust Wolf, Jr., master-at-arms; Harold Barrow, inner guard; A. W. Schmeichel, outer guard.   WDT



12 18       Lincoln Lodge No. 20, Knights of Pythias announced the list of its officers elected at the annual meeting of the lodge, the officers to be installed in January.  Walter F. Siegel, chancellor commander; Clarence F. LeMacher, vice chancellor; Martin J. Koenig, prelate; O. E. Carlton, master of work; Clarence G. Gieger, secretary. John D. Jones, financial secretary; James Platos, treasurer; Lyman Rhodes, master at arms; Arthur W. Kleek, inner guard; A.W. Schmeichel, outer guard; Edgar Krebs, trustee for three years.   WDT



01 21       Following the regular business meeting of Violet Temple No. 20, Pythian Sisters, held Wednesday evening in Castle Hall, a recess was called and the installation of officers ensued.  Mrs. Kusel, most excellent chief, presented the gavel to Mrs. Minna Jecklin who acted as presiding officer for the installation. After retiring to the anteroom, the grand officers appeared in regular formation, as follows: Mary Adams, installing grand chief; Eleanor Schoechert, grand senior; and Martha Jones, grand manager. 


Officers installed were: Past Chief, Julia Lunde; Most Excellent Chief, Luetta Kusel; Excellent Senior, Nellie Deist; Excellent Junior, Elsie Koerner; manager, Emma Krahmer; secretary, Alice Schebstadt; treasurer, Ella Semrich; protector, Elsie West; guard, Helen Hallett; pianist, Erline Torres.   WDT



12 13       Officers of Lincoln Lodge No. 20, Knights of Pythias elected for the 1963 terms were announced today.  They are: Chancellor commander, Clyde A. Taylor; vice chancellor, Cliff Schoechert; prelate, Martin J. Koenig; master of work, Walter F. Siegel; secretary, Clarence G. Gloger; financial secretary, John D. Jones; treasurer, James Platos; master-at-arms, Lyman Rhodes; inner guard, Arthur W. Kleck; outer guard, Erwin T. Hornickle; trustee three years, Lester A. Kuckkahn.   WDT



02 24       Oscar E. Carlson was installed as chancellor commander of Lincoln Lodge No. 20, Knights of Pythias, in ceremonies held this week at Castle Hall.  This is the fifth time he has served the lodge in that capacity.  He succeeds Clifford Schoechert.  Serving as installing officers were: Ray Norton, deputy grand chancellor; Seth Perry, deputy grand prelate; and Lester Kuckkahn, deputy grand master-at-arms.  Officers installed, in addition to Mr. Carlson were: Oscar E. Schmutzler, vice chancellor; Martin Koenig, prelate; Clifford Schoechert, master of works; Clarence Gloger, keeper of records and seals.  John Jones, master of finance; James Platos, master of exchequer; Lyman Rhodes, master-at-arms; Clyde Taylor, inner guard; E. T. Hornickle, outer guard.   WDT




  Image Portfolio, in Cole Bldg     




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History of Watertown, Wisconsin