The Ohio 8th District as we know it, was formed in the late 1800 or early 1900’s.
• RWB Webber C. French of New Holland Lodge was DDGM and is believed to be one of the first to wear the Lecturer’s Jewel from 1937-39.
• From 1948-1950 RWB John Leland was the DDGM and wore the District Lecturer’s Jewel.
• RWB John W. Craig from New Holland Lodge wore the Jewel 1960-63.
• In 1972 the Eighth District started having 2 Deputies:
o RWB Walter Graham* received the Lecturer’s Jewel.
o RWB Malcolm Grady
• Since RWB Graham, the Lecturer’s Jewel was passed along to:
o RWB Pauley
o RWB Billy Joe Jones
• 1980 MWB Robert E. See was appointed DDGM and wore the Lecturer’s Jewel.
Since that time, the Lecturer’s Jewel has remained with the DDGM from Clinton, Fayette, and Pickaway Counties:
• Norman L. Lewis
• Robert Grim
• Don Locke Floyd “Tony” Perone
• Past Grand Tyler William Copas
• James Teeters
• Jeffrey Thompson
• Gary Cooper
• Ronald Sears*
• Howard Laudermilk (Greene Co.)
• Jeffrey A. Garringer
• James Oughterson
• Randy Cottrill
• Cheyenne Duggins
• Lloyd Tripp (Greene Co.)
*Here is another fact of the Jewel:
Upon the premature death of RWB Ronald Sears, the Jewel came to the Greene County Deputy RWB Howard E Laudermilk who wore the Jewel during inspections of Lodges assigned to RWB Sears. It is in bad shape due to age, and was refinished and presented to the Clinton County Deputy RWB Keith Newton to wear during his remaining years as deputy. (Contributed by RWB Howard Laudermilk, April 2009)
Neither Greg Smith nor Keith Newton wore the Jewel during their tenure as District Deputies. This information was substantiated in conversations with them in October of 2014.
The Jewel was presented to RWB Keith Newton upon his appointment to the Ohio Grand Lodge Officer Line.
RWB Jeff Garringer was the next District Deputy to wear the Jewel during his time as a Deputy 2012-2014. During this time, RWB Garringer had a gold leaf added to some of the more tarnished areas of the Jewel.
At Grand Lodge in October of 2014, the Jewel was returned to RWB Keith Newton for safekeeping in the hope that the new incoming Deputy will fulfill the tradition by again wearing this honorable reminder of our Masonic past during his term.
During his tenure as District Deputy, RWB Jim Oughterson wore the jewel.
RWB Keith Newton, Deputy Grand Master, presented the jewel to RWB Randy Cottrill in December of 2018, to wear during his final year as a Deputy.
This brief history was compiled with the help of RWB Jeff Thompson and was presented by LEO Doug Cooper of Dalton Lodge No. 578 September 20, 2007.
(Updated April 2009, October 2014, December 2018, May 2021)
Contributed By: RWB Gary Cooper, PDDGM and PDEO of the 8th Masonic District and
RWB Jeff Garringer of the 8th Masonic District, Ohio.