What is the White Shrine of Jerusalem?
On September 23, 1894, members of what would become Bethlehem Shrine #1, IL met to form a committee to take the steps necessary to procure a charter from the State of Illinois for a Supreme Shrine; a separate charter was also procured to arrange the first subordinate shrine (#1, IL). Under seal of William H Hinrichsen, Secretary of State of the Department of State of the State of Illinois, dated October 23, 1894, the Order of the White Shrine of Jerusalem was founded. The term “White” has nothing to do with race or racial makeup of the Order. Rather, it refers to the purity of the life of Jesus Christ. Neither is it connected to the Ancient Arabic Order of the Mystic Shrine (AAOMS) to which some Master Masons (Shriners) belong.
White Shrine fezzes are fairly rare. This one, purchased at auction, comes from Madon Shrine No. 38, which still meets in Marshalltown, Iowa. The fez is white, with a large patch on the front. We know it’s a White Shrine Fez because of the cross and crook symbol, which is that of the organization. The tassel is yellow with a simple chain holder. The word “patrol” leads us to belive this fez was from a marching or performance unit with the group. Our guess is that it dates from 1970’s or 80’s.