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Montana Freemason                                             March 2018                                 Volume 94   Number 2

                      Get Your History Fix On while in Sidney
                      Get Your History Fix On while in Sidney

                                   Reid Gardiner, R.W. Past Grand Secretary, Editor
                                   Reid Gardiner, R.W. Past Grand Secretary, Editor
         Those  attending  the  152nd Annual  Communication  of  According to Jim Savaloja, PGM and Associate Grand
         the Grand Lodge of Montana should make time to visit  Historian, Grand Lodge of North Dakota; These Brothers
         Fort Buford and the Yellowstone Lodge No. 88 Historic  built an 80’ by 100’ two-story Lodge Hall at the western
         Masonic Site, located about 23 miles northeast of Sidney. edge of the Fort. The upper story was the Lodge room,
                                                               and the lower section was the social event center for the
                                                               Fort  and  the  surrounding  community.  This  Lodge  was
                                                               active until 1874 when the Fort became dormant, and the
                                                               Charter was returned to the Grand Lodge of Minnesota.
                                                               The Lodge building was sold and later dismantled.

         In 1866, the U.S. Army built Fort Buford three miles east
         of the Fort Union Trading Post. The next year, in 1867,
         the  Army  purchased  Fort  Union  from  its  last  private
         owner, the Northwest Fur Company. Soldiers dismantled
         the palisades and bastions and transported the salvaged
         timber and stone to the new Army post, where both were
         used for building materials.

         Fort  Buford  is  also  a  Masonic  historical  site  as  home
         to Yellowstone Lodge #88, the fi rst Masonic Lodge in           Yellowstone Lodge No.88, Lodge Room.
         what would become North Dakota Yellowstone Masonic
         Lodge was the fi rst Masonic Lodge in what became North
         Dakota, its charter issued by the Grand Lodge of Masons
         in Minnesota, dated January 26, 1871.

         The primary offi  cers of this Lodge were soldiers of the
         U.S.  Seventh  Infantry  stationed  at  Fort  Buford.  The
         area’s second Lodge was chartered in 1891-92, with its
         members being African-American “buff alo soldiers” of
         the U.S. 10th Cavalry at Fort Buford. Historic Ft. Buford
         in  North  Dakota  is  located  at  the  confl uence  of  the
         Yellowstone and Missouri rivers.

         Lewis and Clark camped here in their exploration of the
         West. And it was here that Sitting Bull and his decimated
         Sioux followers surrendered in 1881. The fort itself closed
         in 1895 and is partially restored and run as a historic site
         by the North Dakota State Historical Society.

         On  May  22,  2010,  the  Grand  Lodge  of  North  Dakota
         chartered  Yellowstone  Historic  Lodge  No.  88  at  Ft.
         Buford, about 20 miles southwest of Williston, ND.

         The fi rst Masonic charter in what was to become North
         Dakota was issued to Yellowstone Lodge No. 88 by the
         Grand Lodge of Minnesota in 1872. It had a membership
         of 50 Brothers who were members of the 7th Cavalry at
         Ft. Buford, local businessmen, farmers, and others.
                                                               The Ft. Buford Masonic Historical site today is marked
                                                               by large granite boulder inscribed with the brief history.

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