Grand Chapter
of Wyoming
Footprints Through Time

Newcastle #30, Newcastle
May 23, 1916

Ellen L Horton
Earl Christensen
Virginia Porter
     At a special meeting called in Newcastle, Wyoming, on May 23, 1916, the Worthy Grand Patron Brother Fred Wyckoff instituted the new chapter of Newcastle No. 30. The Worthy Grand Matron Clara M. Dickinson, and Sister Cora S. Adams, Associate Grand Conductress, were also in attendance. Members of Electa Chapter No. 5 and Gentian Chapter No. 23 were also there. We had twenty-six charter members and Sister Marguerite D. Turner was our first Worthy Matron. Brother John Sedgwick was elected Worthy Patron and Brother W. V. Dolezal was our first Secretary. The Grand Officers in attendance instructed the new chapter members in the forms of opening the chapter, in conferring of the degrees, in the secret work, the grand honors, balloting, and voting, etc.
     At the second meeting of the chapter on June 9, 1916, Sister Wells was appointed a member of the By-laws committee and a motion was made and seconded to make the second and fourth Tuesdays of each month as the regular meeting nights.
     From the meeting on July 11, 1916, until October 24, 1916, the chapter did not meet. Mrs. Elizabeth Wells was Worthy Matron starting with this meeting, until April 28, 1917.From September 24, 1918, until November of this year there were no meetings held because of the Spanish influenza quarantine.
     The first chapter room was over the bakery in the Nichols block but this building burned and the chapter room moved to the John Haynes Building which was between the Chevrolet Building and the Antlers Hotel. This building also burned in 1935 and while it was being repaired, the officers and members had to climb up a ladder and crawl in a window to hold meetings. The chapter was then moved to the city hall building and remained there until the building was torn down in 1949. They met in the Library basement until 1952 when the new Masonic Hall was built.
     The first Eastern Star funeral to be conducted was for Sister Laura Bawker.
     As the years passed, Newcastle Chapter No. 30 has continued to grow although we have had our ups and downs.
     In the early years, many of our members lived in Cambria, Wyoming. This was a coal mining town seven miles from Newcastle and no matter what the weather was like those faithful members attended most every chapter meeting. They came to Newcastle by hand car on the railroad track or any other means of transportation they could rig up. When the Cambria mines were closed, in 1928, most of tine Cambria members moved away from this community.
     In 1935 our Sister Ellen Norton was Worthy Grand Matron of the Grand Chapter of Wyoming. She presided over the Thirty-eighth Annual Session in Douglas. This was only the second session of the Grand Chapter that had been designated with a name, and this was the "Star Session". She served with Brother G. O. Hanna as Worthy Grand Patron.
     Newcastle has been the site for Grand Chapter on two occasions. In 1903, before Newcastle had a chapter of Eastern Star, the Grand Lodge of Wyoming met here and the Grand Chapter also met here. In 1957 the Sixtieth Annual Session of the Grand Chapter was held in Newcastle with Sister Gladys Roberson, Worthy Grand Matron and Brother Harvey M. Johnston, Worthy Grand Patron.
     Our Brother Earl Christensen served as Worthy Grand Patron in 1963 with Sister Joan Lamet Streeter as Worthy Grand Matron. This was the "Friendship's Garden" Session held in Laramie.      
Sister Virginia Porter served as Worthy Grand Matron in 1982 with Brother Don Gose from Upton as Worthy Grand Patron. The was the Eighty-fifth Annual Session of the Grand Chapter known as "The Wyoming Friendship and Hospitality" Session. It was held in Cheyenne. Sister Virginia continued to honor our chapter by serving as the Grand Secretary from August 1985 until August 1990.