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by James A. Marples

The area around Gilmer and vicinity is casually called “The Piney Woods of East Texas”. This type of forested landscape is most readily seen in winter when all the oak trees and other types of trees have shed their leaves. When Springtime comes, signs of green begin to expand and grow.

The word Greenwood alludes to a forest or when tree leaves are brilliant green. Evergreen alludes to foliage that remains green and functional through more than one growing season. It also alludes to anything regarded as everlastingly fresh or relevant. In Judeo-Christian history, a sprig of acacia or evergreen also symbolized the hope for eternal life in heaven.
For those reasons, a few days ago, I decided to visit Greenwood Masonic Lodge #409, in Greenwood, Louisiana. It is only four and a half miles into Louisiana on Interstate I-20. They only have 26 total members. The members were very friendly and the Lodge was Chartered 100 years ago, in 1923. .

I have two Great Uncles buried in a Greenwood Cemetery in Franklin Nebraska. Many other towns have cemeteries likewise named Greenwood.

Not far from the Masonic Lodge in Greenwood, Louisiana, I was told of  “the Dunn House”.  The Dunn’s were a wealthy and respected family who owned over 2,000 acres in both the Louisiana and Texas.  During the U.S. Civil War, the Dunn House was used as a wartime hospital to care for wounded Confederate soldiers.  I was intrigued by that fascinating bit of history. Let us cherish the Greenwoods and the  Evergreens in our lives.

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