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A Blast from the Past into the Future

By William M. Ferrell

Dimond Lodge No. 603

Dimond Lodge of Oakland, named after the district in which it is located, received its

dispensation from Grand Master Reese on December 27, 1924, and its charter on October 15, 1925. William Hess Graham, Master; Frederic Smith and Arthur Benjamin Currier, Wardens.

Dimond Lodge was not quite four years old when the Great Depression (which began in 1929 and lasted well into the 1930’s) struck the nation. Yet it has shown a steady average increase in membership over its entire period of existence. From its 24 organizers in December 1924, it went up to an enrollment of 55 when it filed its first returns the following year. And it continued to climb until it reached its first peak of 187 in 1932. Then it fluctuated between that figure and 178 for next eleven years, before showing a gain of 12 for the decade ending in 1940. In 1944 it again took a consistent upward trend, and, between then and 1949, climbed from 193 to 270.

In the course of its existence, Dimond Lodge has had only two meeting places. The first was at 2039 Hopkins Street (now MacArthur Blvd.); the second at 4226 Park Boulevard, which was the meeting place of Park Boulevard Lodge.

Notable members: Warren Jennings Blomseth was Lodge Master in 1962 and Grand Master of Masons in 1993-1994

James Willard Reynolds, Past Master (1971) of the lodge was the radio man who flew with Eddie Rickenbacker (a 33nd degree) during WWII. The following is an account of the special envoy that Rickenbacker was sent on just after the Pearl Harbor attack;

Dimond Lodge No. 603 merged with Lakeshore No. 551 and Lake Chabot No.770 July 1, 1980 to become Tri-Square 551.

Next month we will showcase Castro Valley No. 713 and Lake Chabot No. 770. I need some help with the history of each of those lodges. There are still members of our lodge who were raised in Lake Chabot Lodge No.770. I have research from the Grand Lodge records about its chartering, however If you have any personal stories you would like to share about Lake Chabot Lodge No. 770, especially their struggles and early meetings, please contact me.

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