Page 25 - Montana Freemason Magazine March 2014
P. 25

Montana Freemason  March 2014	                                                          Volume 90 Number 1

him that by 1880 he wished to dedicate his remaining “The lengthy and arduous trip of 1883, the backlog
time to leisurely study and administrative duties for of correspondence that awaited him at its end, and the
the Scottish Rite, “He was old and “sick and sore and worry and confusion connected with moving to a new
weary”... he was also tired of practicing law: “I wish place had a telling effect on Pike… By June he had
to devote what remains of my life to the propagation become adjusted to his new surroundings and was
of the Rite, by such personal exertions as I have quite content among his books and birds – he always
used since our last session, and to my studies, which had over fifty caged songbirds near him in these last
have already borne fruit embodied in our Degrees.”” years.” Brown, p. 465
Brown, p. 463
                                                         Carter says of Pike’s 1883 tour that “The trip is
Brown shares a further Pike quote which estimated to have covered 11,450 miles and required
demonstrates that he considered his scholarly labors six months of travel.” Further, he says, “For the times
behind him, and highlights his travelling on behalf of and conditions, the journey would have been an
the Rite: “Others must speak of the extent and value epic undertaking for a young man; Pike was in his
of his past labor for the order, but he would say it had seventy-fourth year, having been born December 29,
been so extended that for the future it would require 1809, and he had been ill much of the time during
much of his time. He must “continue to conduct the decade preceding the trip. It was a marvelous
the correspondence, maintain our intercourse accomplishment by Pike and its results were a great
with foreign Powers, resist encroachments on our tribute to the Grand Commander and to Scottish Rite
jurisdiction, and travel largely, to incite Brethren and Masonry at that time.” Indeed, Pike frequently was
encourage them, and to gain new members.” Brown, stricken with viruses and other maladies during his
p. 463                                                   trips as well. Carter, p. 276

   “Pike lived from 1880 to 1883 in the Supreme             “It is unknown when and how Grand Commander
Council rooms at 218 Third Street. He traveled much      Pike determined to make a journey through Missouri,
of the time during spring, summer, and fall of these     Kansas, Arkansas, Texas, Louisiana, Alabama and
years visiting and organizing bodies of the rite. A      Georgia in late 1884 but it is certain that the decision
seven-thousand-mile itinerary of 1880 took him to        was final on October 24, 1884, when he drew $150
Minnesota, Iowa, Kansas, New Mexico, Colorado,           from Supreme council funds to defray the expenses of
Wyoming, and Missouri. The next year he journeyed        the trip.” Carter, p. 289
over twelve thousand miles, going in the spring to
the Midwestern states and territories of the trans-         “But in April he was set back by a three-week
Mississippi and in the fall into Tennessee, Arkansas,    siege of gout. He shook it off quickly, however, and
Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Florida,         in the summer of 1885 went on an extensive trip
Georgia, South and North Carolina, and Virginia.”        into Nebraska, Missouri, Wyoming, Utah, Montana,
Brown, p. 464                                            North Dakota, Minnesota, and Iowa… he wrote…
                                                         “Traveling does me good; but I am weary of it. I want
   “Pike returned to the South on visitations in the     to be among my books and to see and hear my birds.”
spring of 1882, working at Jacksonville and Pensacola    He was home again by September, worn out and sick.”
in Florida, at Albany, Macon, Atlanta, and Savannah      Brown, p. 465
in Georgia, and at Montgomery in Alabama… The
spring of 1883 found him on a trip to the Pacific Coast     1886 essentially marked the close of Pike’s
by way of New Orleans, El Paso, New Mexico, and          travelling career. Pike was dogged by the specter of
Arizona.” Brown, p. 464                                  an 1859 court case he had won, “… though he was
                                                         keenly disappointed in the spring of 1886 when the
   “By the fourth of May [1883] he had recovered         court claims set aside the Senate award of 1859.” This
and had proceeded by way of Los Angeles to San           settlement, and the expected windfall that never came,
Francisco. He worked in and near that city until         hounded him for nearly 30 years. Finances had forced
sometime after the middle of June and then sailed to     Pike to ask for assistance from the Supreme Council,
Portland, Oregon, and thence to Seattle, Washington,     and to live at their headquarters. “Nevertheless, when
where he labored until August. From Seattle he went      the Supreme Court decided, November 15, 1886,
to Helena, Montana, and from there he returned by        that the award was unimpeachable and reversed the
way of Minnesota and Iowa to Washington, D.C.,           decision of the court of claims, Pike assumed that he
reaching there in late September. He then moved          had won a great moral victory; he had, he boasted,
himself and library in a building that he and William    gotten the Senate award of 1859 in the first place.
H. Ireland, Grand Secretary, had purchased for the       His fee should have been nearly $80,000 but neither
Supreme Council the previous march.” Brown, p. 465       McKee, the principle attorney, nor the ChoctawPsageev2e5r
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