“SUDAN” – the Arabic meaning of which is “An Area of the
Sub-Saharan Africa.” The name is from the oldest part of the
world, from a land of mystery and pageantry
for the establishment of Sudan was received July 13, 1916, and
formal institution ceremonies were held four months later on
November 22, 1916, at 2:30 pm. Tremendous interest had already
been manifested, evidenced by the fact that on the day of
institution there were 106 candidates and 30 affiliates received
into membership. The Special Deputy of the Imperial Potentate
installed the first officers, administering to them the
obligations and oath of their office. The Commission of the
Imperial Potentate was read by Illustrious G. T. Bryan, Past
Potentate of Oasis Shriners. Among those installed and obligated
with the vows of their office by Noble W. S. Lydell, Special
Deputy of the Imperial Potentate, were the first Potentate,
Noble Alexander B. Andrews, Jr., of Raleigh; Chief Rabban J. C.
Braswell; Assistant Rabban W. A. French; High Priest and Prophet
W. G. Branham; Oriental Guide W. R. Smith; Treasurer C. D.
Bradham (founder of the original Pepsi Cola Company);
the first Recorder of Sudan Temple Joe F. Rhem; First Ceremonial
Master J. H. Anderson; Second Ceremonial Master R. C. Dunn,
Marshall J. T. Lassister; Captain of the Guard F. N. Bridgers;
Outer Guard E. C. Toepleman
and present Shrine Center was constructed adjacent to the old
one and dedicated in 1951 under Potentate Marcus G. Carpenter.
The office suite and dormitory addition to the facility was
completed and dedicated in 1956 under Potentate Clarence H.
Parker. This Temple Building is now one of the most unique in
the quaint old City of New Bern, the colonial capital of North
Carolina and said to be the smallest city in North America which
one can obtain all the degrees of Masonry, the Blue Lodge, the
Scottish Rite, the York Rite, and the Shrine, the Eastern Star
and the White Shrine. Sudan was the 141st Temple to be chartered
by the Imperial Council and now has over 7100 members. It is
also the second largest Shrine Center in North Carolina and the
eighth largest in the entire Shrine fraternity.
THESE ARE EXCERPTS FROM
THE HISTORY OF SUDAN SHRINERS ON THEIR WEB SITE
HISTORY OF THE FEZ
The fez, which we
Nobles of the Shrine have the honor and privilege of wearing, has been
handed down to us through the ages. The red, or Scarlet, fez, official
headwear of the Ancient Arabic Order Nobles of the Mystic Shrine,
derives its name from the original place of its manufacture, the holy
city of Fez in Morocco, and dates back to about 980 A.D
In that day, the city
of Fez was the seat of learning, drawing pupils and scholars from all
parts of the world. Besides being a holy one, it also was the center of
manufacturing, which included silks, sashes, carpets, leathers and
headdresses. The last-names were known as fezzes, so named for that
city. The fez was dyed red or scarlet and became the symbol as a mark of
learning, in favor of the wearer, and only the highest dignitaries were
permitted to wear the red hat, or fez.
In the Orient this
prevails even to the present. As the glory of the city of Fez faded, the
manufacture of the fez for use in southern Europe and Northern Africa
now is confined chiefly to Austria, France and Turkey.