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[[Image – black and white photo; a man on the left wearing the fez along with an open collared shirt and white suit jacket; the man on the right has eyeglasses and is wearing a double-breasted gray pinstripe suit and tie, and a badge on the left with the word "FALSTAFF"]] [[Image – black and white photo; on the sidewalk outside the building: center, an elderly man in eyeglasses wearing the fez and a necklace of office over his light colored suit, shirt and tie, to a man on the left; in the background several men in fezzes]] [[Image – black and white photo; left facing profile view of a smiling man wearing a dark suit jacket and white shirt, over which is laid a necklace of office]] [[Image - black and white photo; On the sidewalk outside a building, two men in fezzes and shirtsleeves smile for the picture; in the background a number of men and one woman, all in business attire; man in the center of this group is looking back at the photographer]] A THUMB NAIL SKETCH OF SHRINE HISTORY On June 2, 1893, Palestine Temple was instituted as the first Temple in the Grand Council, which was instituted and organized. On June 10, 1893, Rofelt Pasha, an Arabian Prince in company with other oriental visitors, acting in accordance with a special deputation, caused Illustrious John G. Jones to cross the HOT SANDS and conferred on him the SHRINE DEGREE, with power and authority to set up Temples and confer the degree of the Order. From that date to September 1899, the history of the Ancient Egyptian Arabic Order Nobles Mystic Shrine is quite vague, with the exception that John G. Jones had an encounter with the United Supreme Council, Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite for the Southern Jurisdiction and Symbolic Masonry in the jurisdiction of Illinois that resulted in his expulsion and the call for reorganization, issued by Issac Holland of Pyramid Temple in September 1899. With the reorganization, the Order was incorporated on November 13, 1901 and a charter issued in Washington, D.C. The formal reorganization had been accomplished at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania with representatives from Pyramid Temple, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and about one hundred other delegates. We have grown from seven to one hundred seventy Temples. Even though our spirit was dimmed in 1916. When State and Federal Courts in Texas, Arkansas and Georgia issued permanent injunctions against our Order of the Mystic Shrine. The injunctions forbade Negroes to wear the fez, jewels and emblems of the Order. Those old Nobles, however, had the fortitude and tenacity to take their case to the United States Supreme Court and on June 5, 1929, Justice Vandeventer read a unanimous decision of the Court, which struck down the injunctions and permitted Negroes to continue to practice Shrinedom without interruption from others. This, this non-profit, fraternal Order has grown to over twenty-five thousand members with the organization of the Auxiliary Court of Daughters of Isis, constituted on August 27, 1926 under the Honorable Caesar R. Blake Jr., Imperial Potentate. We are extremely proud of our heritage of being non-violent and a benevolent, jolly and progressive group of Nobles and Daughters spreading charity across the land in the millions of dollars each year. The present Imperial Potentate is the sixteenth Noble who has headed this Order, being elevated in 1965 in San Francisco, California. The Ancient Egyptian Arabic Order Nobles Mystic Shrine of North and South America and its jurisdiction is incorporated as a charitable and fraternal organization. The major programs of the order are those of service and benevolence. The Ladies Auxiliary, The Daughters of Isis is also a fraternal and charitable organization whose membership is composed of wives, widows, daughters and sisters of Shriners. The Red Fez worn by Shriners is an old Afro-Arabic symbol of learning and prominence. Shriners wear several types of colorful regalias on parades and other occasions. A pet project of Shriners is the Imperial Council's National Tuberculosis and Cancer Foundation which was established in 1948. To date Shriners have contributed some $251,000.00 to this foundation which has enabled it to make yearly grants to colleges and hospitals for research in medicine. Another enthusiastically supported project of Shriners is our Shrine Talent Scholarship Program established in 1950. $68,000.00 have been raised by Shriners for the purpose of assisting young people pursue higher educational levels. Shriners have contributed $26,500.00 to the Prince Hall Legal Research Fund for assistance to the NAACP; $5,500.00 to the United Negro College Fund; $15,000.00 to the American Cancer Society and $5,000.00 to the Urban League. The local programs of Shriners is to support all programs of the National Order and to participate fully in the civic, political and social programs of our respective communities. A must in local Shrinedom is qualifying and registering ourselves and five additional persons, previously not qualified to become voters.
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