W. B. Jack Ball, Grand Master of Masons in Texas in the year of 1954, was born in Farmersville, Collin County, Texas, on the twenty-first day of September, 1896, the son of T. E. Ball and Mary Philpot Ball.
Brother Ball attended public schools in Farmersville, Texas, and was Class Salutatorian in the graduating class of 1914. He attended the University of Texas and the Law School of the University of Texas, receiving B. A. Degree in August of 1919 and L. L. B. Degree in June 1921. For the B. A. Degree he majored in History (particularly Latin-American) and minored in Government. He did outstanding work while in University, serving as Student Assistant in government and Quiz Master (Student assistant) in Law School at the University of Texas. His scholarship and popularity was further acknowledged by his being admitted to the following: Acacia Fraternity, Phi Beta Kappa, Phi Delta Phi, Phi Sigma Alpha and Chancellors.
During World War I Brother Ball withdrew from the University and voluntarily enlisted in the United States Marine Corps. After completion of recruit training he was assigned to the N.C.O. School at Paris Island, South Carolina. After completing N.C.O. School he was promoted to Non-Com and assigned back to the Marine N.C.O. School, Paris Island, South Carolina as an instructor. He was honorably discharged in December, 1918.
Again, during World War II, Brother Ball served his country in a civilian status as a member of the Staff of the Chief Air Raid Warden of Bexar County and San Antonio Metropolitan area.
Upon graduation from Law School, University of Texas, Brother Ball entered law practice in June of 1921 in San Antonio, Texas, with the law firm of Taliaferro, Cunningham and Moursund. On January 1, 1925, he entered independent practice and continued in this capacity until November of 1935 when he formed partnership with the firm of Moursund, Ball, Moursund and Bergstrom. For years he has been a member of the San Antonio Bar Association, the State Bar of Texas and the American Bar Association. He is a Past President and Past Director of the San Antonio Bar Association. He served on various committees of the State Bar Association of Texas, having been State Chairman of two committees. At one time was member of the House of Delegates of the American Bar Association.
Brother Ball has always shown a keen interest in church and civic affairs. He is a member of the First Presbyterian Church, San Antonio, Texas, of the San Antonio Country Club, of the San Antonio Chamber of Commerce, of the San Antonio Conopus Club and formerly of the San Antonio Council of Presidents, having served as President and as Director of this Council and active in various other civic organizations of the city. He was a member of the State Democratic Executive Committee of Texas during 1941-1942.
Brother Ball married Alice Munson of Brazoria County, Texas, in 1921, and to this union was born one son, T. Armour Ball, who is a member of Albert Pike Lodge No. 1169, San Antonio, Texas. Mrs. Ball passed way February 28, 1945.
Brother Ball was initiated in Farmersville Lodge No. 214, of Farmersville, Texas, on November 27, 1918, passed July 19, 1919, and raised August 9,. 1919, the degrees having been conferred by courtesy by other Lodges. He affiliated as a Charter Member of Albert Pike Lodge No. 1169 in 1921 and served as Worshipful Master in 1928-1929.
In the Grand Lodge of Texas he served on the Committee on Masonic Jurisprudence, as District Deputy Grand Master of the 39th Masonic District, as Grand Senior Warden in 1952, Deputy Grand Master in 1953 and at 118th Annual Grand Communication was installed as M.’.W.’.Grand Master of Masons in Texas. He is now Grand Representative of the Grand Lodge of Kansas near the Grand Lodge of Texas.
Brother Ball is a member of the Scottish Rite, the York Rite Bodies and Alzafar Shrine Temple of San Antonio. He was coroneted 33° Inspector General Honorary by the Supreme Council in 1945 and is a member of the Red Cross of Constantine. He served as Chairman of the Executive Committee of the Scottish Rite Bodies of San Antonio for several years.
Upon installation as Grand Master he stated that it would be his purpose to dedicate himself to the task of “Carrying Masonry to Every Mason in Texas.” Regarding this task one of the Committees of Grand Lodge had this to say:
“He has of a verity, applied himself to his announced objective, `Carrying Masonry to every Mason in Texas’; from border to border, north, south, east and west, has this Apostle of Fraternity and Brotherly love developed his theme. With the zeal of a crusader, the wisdom of a philosopher, the fortitude of Atlas and the patience of job, has he endeavored to `make darkness light before us and crooked things straight’.”
You, Brother Ball, have earned the love, esteem and admiration of the rank and file of the Craft and are enshrined in the hearts of over two hundred and twenty-three thousand Masons in the Grand Jurisdiction of Texas.