About the Order Of The Eastern Star


What It Is: The Order of the Eastern Star is the largest fraternal organization in the world to which both men and women may belong. Worldwide, there are approximately 1 million members under the General Grand Chapter.

Eastern Star is a social order comprised of persons with spiritual values but it is not a religion. Its appeal rests in the true beauty of the refreshing and character-building lessons that are so sincerely portrayed in its ritualistic work. A deep fraternal bond exists between its members. It is the wholesome relationship of sisterly and brotherly love brought about through high principles exemplified in our lives which makes us near and dear to each other.

While this is an Order composed of people of deep spiritual convictions, it is open to all faiths, except no faith. The personal welfare of our members is vital to all of those in the Eastern Star and it is considered a privilege to help another member whenever we can. For membership information, click here.

Purposes. The stated purposes of the organization are: Charitable, Educational, Fraternal and Scientific; but there is much more to it than that. Dr. Rob Morris, the Poet Laureate of Masonry, founded the Order using beautiful and inspiring biblical examples of heroic conduct and moral values. These portray the noble principles which should adorn the personal lives of Eastern Star members. Eastern Star strives to take good people and through uplifting and elevating associations of love and service, and through precept and example, build an Order which is truly dedicated to charity, truth and loving kindness.

Projects. Concrete evidence of the charitable nature of the organization as it affects others is the millions of dollars which have been raised within the membership to support national, jurisdictional, and local charities. Many Grand Jurisdictions have homes for their senior members.

Mary Royal Chapter of the Order of the Eastern Star #833 was instituted in 1920. Mary Royal Thornton, wife of Dr. Thornton was installed as Worthy Matron and Howard Lovel, Worthy Patron.

The chapter was given the name of Mary Royal in honor of Mary Thornton.

The chapter and Mason's Lodge was then held in a two story building on Main Street, where the Apostolic Church fellowship Building now stands. This building was destroyed by fire in 1964 with all the Lodge's regalia destroyed.

Johanna Kuhnke, Secretary of the chapter, had the chapter books at home, so we still had our records.

The Mason's Lodge then built the building where it stands today in 1965,completed
in 1966. Much free labor and hard work was put into this building. The Eastern Star
Chapter had many Chicken and Dumpling Dinners to furnish the Lodge, kitchen, and
dining room.

When we had our big nights, members would come from all over Southern Illinois and other states to hold offices. We in return would visit other chapters and fill stations there.

In 1985, because age and deaths of many members, we were forced to close the
Chapter. It was a sad time and a hard decision to make. Several of our members now
belong to Zeigler Chapter.

(Information Taken From The 1993 Royalton Round-Up Booklet.)