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History of the Mosaic Templars of America
Its Founders and Officials
A. E. Bush and P. L. Dorman
Introduction by John William Graves

Reprint of classic history of this important African American organization


Originally published in 1924 and long out of print, this book tells the story of the Mosaic Templars of America (MTA), a famous black fraternal organization that was founded by two former slaves in Little Rock, Arkansas, in the late-nineteenth century. The organization originally provided illness, death, and burial insurance during an era of segregation when few basic services were available to black people. By 1900 Mosaic Templars’ industries grew to include an insurance company, a building and loan association, a publishing company, a business college, a nursing school, and a hospital.
By 1905 it had a number of lodges across the state with thousands of members. Its headquarters were housed in a handsome new building that opened in 1913; Booker T. Washington delivered the dedication speech. In the 1920s they claimed chapters in twenty-six states and six foreign countries, making it one of the largest black organizations in the world. However, in the 1930s the MTA began to feel the effects of the Great Depression and eventually ceased operations. However, a single chapter remains, in Barbados. The headquarters building burned down in 2005, and this book is being published to
coincide with the grand opening this fall of a completely rebuilt structure that will house the new Mosaic Templars Cultural Center.


Aldridge E. Bush (A. E. Bush) was born in 1894 and died in 1953. He served with the MTA and helped establish the Century Life Insurance Company in Little Rock in 1926.
Percy Lipton Dorman (P. L. Dorman) was born in 1876 and died in 1958. Besides working for the MTA, he taught in schools around the state.
John William Graves is chairperson of the Department of Social Sciences and professor of history at Henderson State University. He is the author of Town and Country and serves on the advisory board of the Mosaic Templars Cultural Center of the Department of Arkansas Heritage.

September
7 1/2 x 5, 312 pages, 42 photographs
$24.95 (s) cloth
ISBN 978-1-55728-882-0 | 1-55728-882-8