3rd Degree in Bibs -  Farmers Lodge No. 168 A.F. & A.M.

March 6, 2010:  28 Masons representing 12 unique lodges traveled to Farmers Lodge No. 168 at Kinross to help confer the 3rd Degree on Brother Brock, a farmer, also in the photography business and wrestling coach at EV High School.   Farthest Lodge in attendance, Western Star No. 26, Albert Lea, MN.  Closest Lodge in attendance:  Webb Lodge No. 182, Sigourney, Iowa.   This event also known as "Brock in Bibs."   Bib overalls are the standard dress of Farmers Lodge, dating back as far as anyone can remember.   The Lodge opened in 1863 at the heart of the Civil War.  The first lodge was situated at Foote Post Office, Iowa County, Iowa, and moved to Kinross in 1901.

Eleven members of Farmers Lodge No. 168 A.F. & A.M. were in attendance.


Brothers Jeff, Greg, Mike and Don relax at break.

Brothers Steve, Dan and Bob before 1st Sec.

FUN FACT:  Canopy Lodge No. 290 - Oxford, Iowa, has participated in three degrees for three candidates in three months at Farmers Lodge.   Thanks to our Brothers at Canopy Lodge No. 290!

Lodge members prepare for the day of degree work.  Lodges represented at the March 6, 2010 "3rd Degree in Bibs" included:  Brubaker No. 675 at Davenport, Mt. Hermon No. 263 at Cedar Rapids, Iowa City No. 4, Lyons No. 93 at Clinton, Mt Calvary No. 95 at West Liberty, Canopy No. 290 at Oxford, Integrity No. 548 at Bussey, Clinton No. 15, Springville No. 139, Webb No. 182 at Sigourney, and Western Star No. 26 at Albert Lea, Minnesota.   Thanks to all these lodges.

There's a special bond in Masonry that brings Brothers together to understand the symbolism of life.

Freemasons from Eastern Iowa gather in Kinross to participate in the symbolic ritual of building King Solomon's Temple.

Farmers Lodge has a dress code of bib overalls, dating to the 19th Century.

Past Grand Master Denny Zahrt, Grand Lodge of Iowa A.F. & A.M., "Hooked on Iowa Masonry" is recognized for his contribution to the growth of Farmers Lodge No. 168 by the current WM.  He was presented with a package of official Lodge sausage. Denny presented hand-made gavels to the lodge in February.  Denny has taken a considerable interest in all aspects of Farmers Lodge, and has traveled often to Kinross for Degree work.  Farmers Lodge experienced its rebirth during Denny's tenure as Grand Master, when six new members were raised to Master Masons.  The members started a "Thursday Fishing League" based on the foundation of Denny's "Hooked on Iowa Masonry" slogan in 2007.  Thanks Denny!

FUN FACT: The Nielsens of Springville No. 139 have been regular participants in Degree work at Farmers Lodge.

Amidst hearty applause, Past Grand Master Zahrt is escorted to his seat by the Senior Deacon of Farmers Lodge No. 168.

Farmers Lodge has tripled in membership over the past three years.  
Past Grand Master Mosier called it the "Poster Child for Iowa Masonry."

Lunch Break


      Scenes from Lunch

In 2006 Farmers Lodge was tied for smallest Lodge in the State.
In 2008 it rose out of the "Bottom Ten" list.

The youngest member of Farmers Lodge is 18.  The oldest active member is 94, and attends nearly every stated communication and all degree work!

Nearly every Grand Lodge Officer from the past four years has attended Farmers Lodge.

Journal Entry of Grand Master Donald Mosier: "20 December 2007: Farmers Lodge, Kinross, 3rd Degree in Bib Overalls.  Farmers Lodge was near terminal just a year ago.  But they have increased their membership by more than 50% in a year. Let's see somebody top that one.  They have a tradition of wearing bib overalls for degree work.  I promised last summer that if invited, the Grand Officers would come to do a degree in bibs.  They did.  We did.  It was a lot of fun.  We should do this sort of thing more often."

Past Grand Masters have attended every level of Degree work since 2007.

Facing the East:  Prior to First Section, Third Degree.  

At Farmers Lodge, any style or brand of bib overalls is acceptable.

Go To 2 for 3 in Bibs!