John H. DeVeaux Magnanimous Order of Knights Templar Masons held their Centennial Celebration on December 29, 2013 at St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church located 1401 MLK, Jr. Blvd. John H. DeVeaux was a member of St. Matthew’s Episcopal until his death in 1909. Church services began at 10am.
Following the services at the church, the John H. De- Veaux Magnanimous Order of Knights Templar Masons held a Commemoration Service at the grave site of John H. DeVeaux located in Laurel Grove South Cemetery. John H. DeVeaux was the third Grand Master of Prince Hall Masons in Georgia. He was born in Savannah on May 10, 1848. In 1866, the Governor of Georgia gave him a life Commission as a Colonel in the Georgia Militia.
He was one of the founders of the Wage Earner Bank. He assisted James M. Simms in the organizing of Prince Hall Masonic Grand Lodge of Georgia. In 1875 DeVeaux, along with Louis B. Toomer, Sr. and Louis M. Pleasant founded The Colored Tribune, now known as The Savannah Tribune. From 1867 to 1868 DeVeaux was the Collector of Customs at the Port of Savannah and also served at the Port of Brunswick. In 1896 he returned to Savannah as Assistant Collector of Customs Savannah Port and operated the Port single handed through an epidemic of Yellow Fever when the entire city and Port were under quarantine. For this efficiency, he was cited by The United States Department of Commerce and The Coast Guard for Valor beyond the call of duty. He was elected Most Worshipful in 1874 and served as Most Worshipful Grand Master of all Prince Hall Masons in the Jurisdiction of Georgia for 9 years. He died at his home in Savannah June 7, 1909.