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1938 – Louis Bonte Blakemore

M. W. Brother Louis Bonte Blakemore was born March 7, 1879 at Cincinnati, Ohio, the only child of Louis H. and Gussie Bonte Blakemore. He was a life long resident of Cincinnati, where he attended both elementary and high school. He received a B. S. Degree in liberal arts at the University of Cincinnati, and received a L. L. B. Degree in law at the College of Law, University of Cincinnati, where he was a member of Sigma Chi fraternity. Although he never practiced law as a profession, he was a member of the Cincinnati Bar Association and the Ohio Bar Association. “Lou,” as he was affectionately known by his friends, served as the first clerk of the Cincinnati City Council after the adoption of the Charter form of city government by that city in 1926, a position he held for twelve years. In 1939, he was appointed Deputy Superintendent of Insurance for the State of Ohio. After resigning that position in 1945, he founded the Masonic History Company in Chicago, Illinois, serving as president until his retirement in 1966.

On June 20, 1914, M. W. Brother Blakemore was united in marriage to Lillian Werner, who was his life-long companion until her death on June 18, 1970. They celebrated their fiftieth wedding anniversary on June 20, 1964. They were known worldwide among the many friends they had made during their seven trips around the world. During their varied travels, Lou visited many Masonic Lodges throughout the world, and attended Grand Lodge Sessions in many countries.

Most Worshipful Brother Blakemore was a devout Christian, and he was a life long member of the First Presbyterian Church in Walnut Hills, where he served in many capacities and as the Superintendent of Sunday School for many years.

The Masonic memberships of M. W. Brother Blakemore included Avon Lodge No. 542, where he received the Entered Apprentice Degree on March 15, 1910, passed to the Degree of Fellowcraft on April 26, 1910 and raised on May 24, 1910; dimitted to Calvary-Clifton Lodge No. 700 in 1926, where he served as Worshipful Master in 1928-29 and again in 1944-45.

Kilwinning Chapter No. 97, R. A. M.; Cincinnati Council No.1, R. & S. M.; Hanselmann Commandery No. 16, K. T., where he served as Eminent Commander. Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite of the Valley of Cincinnati. He was crowned an honorary member of the Supreme Council 33° in 1970.

He was a member of the Syrian Temple Shrine; the Oola Khan Grotto; and Arra Chapter No. 160, O. E. S. Brother Blakemore was a fifty year member in all these Masonic bodies and the affiliated bodies.

In his many years as a Mason, M. W. Brother Blakemore had many distinctions and achievements, among which he was one of the founders of the First Masonic District Officers Association, and served as its first president in 1929. He was also a Past President of the Society of Past Masters of Cincinnati and Vicinity. He also wrote, as well as edited, many books on Masonic History and Philosophy.

The trust which he left Calvary-Clifton Lodge No. 700 for the purpose of erecting a temple with provisions to endow it will ever be a reminder of his love for Masonry and his fellow man.

He served the Grand Lodge well in many capacities with fervor, zeal and distinction since his first appointment as a District Deputy Grand Master in 1929. He was appointed. Junior Grand Deacon in 1931, and progressed through the Grand Lodge line, and was elected Grand Master in October 1937.

Masonry throughout the world mourns the passing of M. W. Brother Louis Bonte Blakemore on Saturday, September 4, 1971 at Cincinnati, Ohio. He had been residing in a nursing home for a year following a heart failure on July 16, 1970. His remains were entombed in the Mausoleum at Spring Grove Cemetery, Section E26, Crypt B1, Cincinnati, Ohio, on September 8, 1971.