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Masonic Grand Lodge A.F. and A.M. members hoist the Schuyler Public Library cornerstone Saturday during a dedication ceremony.

Liz Morales, Lee Enterprises

A cornerstone dedication ceremony for the new Schuyler Public Library was conducted Saturday by the Masonic Grand Lodge A.F. and A.M. of Nebraska.

Members of the library foundation, library board and community were present for the event.

Grand Master Rick Myers of Fremont opened the ceremony and explained its significance.

“A cornerstone dedication is to mark the starting point of a building that is under construction,” Myers said. “One of the most famous American Masons, George Washington, laid the cornerstone of the Capitol building in 1793 and we have continued the tradition to this day."

As part of the ceremony, Masons from the Grand Lodge used tools to ensure the stability of the cornerstone.

“Back then, when people would build, they didn’t have the gadgets to make sure structures were sound,” Myers explained. “The idea was you start out with a good cornerstone and make sure it’s straight or the building will be just as crooked as the first piece."

Library Foundation Vice President Fred Wigington said plans for the ceremony began one year ago.

“Masons that are on the foundation came to us and asked us if we would be interested in this a year ago,” Wigington said. “It was about the same time we started putting plans together for the new library."

Wigington said the cornerstone will be laid “when the weather is a little nicer.”

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