When inventorying some boxes yesterday, we unearthed some of the earliest District Lodge Illinois #8 newsletters. The three newsletters date to October and November 1917 giving brief glimpses into lodge life and Vasa personalities from the early 20th century. Browsing these three newsletters highlighted the value of District and Local Lodge newsletters to researchers.
While the type of news is very similar to what we read today, i.e. DM’s messages, officers reports, and LL news. These newsletters contain a wealth of info on local and regional events and personalities. Different views show how multiple lodges located in the same area shared resources at special events. Advertisements from Swedish-run businesses show how immigrants found the goods and services they needed in a new country. The ads demonstrate how well Swedish businessmen intergrated into American life.
The more current newsletters show multiple Swedish and Scandinavian organizations coming together to celebrate holidays, or holding joint workshops and other events. Some local lodges share flyers from area organizations on events that may be of interest to members. Personally, I enjoy skimming through the newsletters to see what the different lodges are doing and learning about various members.
The Vasa National Archives actively seeks out newsletters from all the local lodges and districts. We strive to keep a complete run of all Vasa-related newsletters to present a more complete history of the Vasa Order to our researchers. If you have any old newsletters, we ask that you send them to us. Please put us on your mailing list or email us copies of your current newsletters.
In Truth and Unity,
Vasa National Archives