M.W. Ralph Isaac Ingersoll – 1823-1824
Ralph Isaac Ingersoll
Again a lawyer succeeds to the Grand East. Ralph Isaac Ingersoll was born in New Haven, February 8, 1789, and graduated from Yale in 1809. His law studies were pursued under the Honorable Seth p. Staples. New Haven sent him to the General Assembly in 1819 and here he remained until 1825, when he went to Congress. Eight years were passed at the national capital. His native city honored him by choosing him Mayor. By birth he was a Federalist, but developed into what was known as a Tolerationist, and ‘yet he supported Brother Andrew Jackson in 1834 during the Masonic Eclipse. Although offered the senatorship and the office of governor, he declined. President Polk, however, succeeded in persuading him to act as Minister to Russia for two years.
With all this public activity he was also active in Masonry. Joining Hiram Lodge, No.1, September 19, 1811, he soon became its Master in 1815 and served three years. At that time he began in the Grand Lodge as Grand Junior Warden in 1818, and after serving in the other two offices, he became Grand Master in 1823 for a period of two years.
Some one said he was the “best public speaker I ever saw. At one time he was witty and humorous, at another serious and pathetic. He could be sarcastic. Oppression of weak by strong he would vehemently denounce.” His death occurred August 26, 1872, and was referred to in the following words: “He was an ornament to the State, and to the Fraternity in high official trusts.”