The City Cemetery's Fraternal Section

Private sections were established for perpetual care purposes at the City Cemetery by fraternal organizations and church congregations soon after the City Cemetery's founding. Several plots were conveyed to mutualistas, or mutual societies. Mutualistas were fraternal societies established in the late nineteenth century that promoted Mexican and American patriotic activities, civic pride, and offered burial insurance for their members. Mutual societies were an expression for the Mexican labor movement in the United States. Laredo was on the forefront of the Mexican labor movement which addressed not only wage concerns but also other sociopolitical actions designed to ensure survival, combat poverty, social discrimination and inequality, and gain a measure of acceptance in the political life of the United States. Mutual societies also were a source for Mexican unity and the reaffirmation of identity, and were instrumental in the reform movement as their membership was concerned with the condition of the Mexican worker in the United States. The cemetery plots for the Sociedad de Obreros was conveyed on July 9, 1900 for the sum of $1. On April 22, 1910, another plot was deeded to the Sociedad Hijos de Juárez. (Webb County Deed Records; City Minute Book).

Several chapters of national fraternal organizations organized in the late nineteenth century to provide fellowship and mutual benefit services, including burial insurance. This development also occurred in Laredo as plots were deeded to the Knights of Pythias, Aztec Lodge No. 111, on November 20, 1893; Masonic Lodge No. 547 on February 6, 1896 and October 3, 1901: the Master Workmen of Laredo Lodge No. 120 on February 7, 1897: the Improved Order of Redmen, Yaqui Tribe No. 59 on July 2, 1898; the Caballeros de Honor Masonic Lodge No. 14 on July 9, 1900; the Order of Railway Conductors, Division No. 399 on September 20, 1913; and the Independent Order of Oddfellows, Rio Grande Lodge No. 363 on October 22, 1914. On September 9, 1924, the Benito Juarez Masonic Lodge requested land for burial purposes. (Webb County Deed Records; City Minute Book.)

 

|Master Workmen of Laredo Lodge| |Sociedad de Obreros| |Masons|

|Indepentent Order of Odd Fellows| |Sociedad Mutualista Hijos de Juárez|

|Improved Order of Red Men| |Order of Railway Conductors and Brakemen|

|Knights of Pythias| |Elks| |Woodmen of the World |