Douglas County’s Kensington Rune Stone Park recently drew members of the Ancient Free and Accepted Masons from across the nation, along with their families and friends and members of the Order of the Knights Templar.

The occasion was the annual Grand York Rite Session of Minnesota held June 24-26.

One of the highlights, according to Sir Knight Joseph Anderson, was a group tour of the Ohman family farm hosted by Darwin Ohman, grandson of Olof Ohman, with assistance from Sir Knight Scott Wolter, a well-known expert on the Kensington Rune Stone and founder of American Petrographic Services in St. Paul.

“Listening to Darwin and Scott recall and reflect upon the history and happenings of this special place, over generations, connected us, yielding answers to inquisitive heartfelt questions, and also produced watery eyes among many of those in attendance,” said Anderson.

Members of the Grand Commandery of Minnesota and Grand Encampment of Knights Templar of the United States presented Darwin Ohman with the “Companion of the Temple Award.” The honor was given in the precise location – according to family photographs showing the tree and the profile of the hillside – where the Rune Stone was unearthed by several members of the Ohman family in 1898, said Eric Erfourth, education officer of the Knights Templar of Minnesota.

Newsletter signup for email alerts

Anderson and Erfourth paraphrased remarks from the award ceremony: “Darwin Ohman consistently demonstrates grand scientific competence, divine patience and heartfelt resilience in his quest to endure and ensure the truths of this historic Minnesota monument are recognized on the level, without fear or favor. As his grandfather Olof in spirit is also with us today, be it known that Darwin indeed is a most treasured companion of our Temple.”

Wolter was then presented with a “Meritorious Service Medal” for “research, discovery and education surrounding the Kensington Rune Stone in pursuit of ultimate truth.”

The recognition given to Wolter and Darwin Ohman was a “beautiful moment,” Anderson said.

“To witness two well deserved individuals receiving these awards and to see their emotions was priceless,” he said. “It was a day that will always be remembered. If you have not visited the site, it is well worth your travel and time.”