Andrew Davison Agnew was born of Scottish parentage in County Antrim, Northern Ireland, on November 18, 1867, and had resided in Milwaukee since 1871. Completing his education in the private and public schools of Milwaukee, he took up the study of law and graduated from the Milwaukee Law School (LL.B. Marquette University). He kept up an active law practice in Milwaukee until 1925 when he retired to devote himself to his large private interests. He was a member of the Milwaukee Bar Association, the Wisconsin State Bar Association, the Milwaukee Athletic Club and the Wisconsin Historical Society. He was a member of Immanuel Presbyterian Church.
On February 16, 1929, he was married to Mrs. Harriet E. Kobs.
For several months before his eighty-fourth birthday, he had been in failing health, so that his passing on December 1951, was not unexpected. Funeral services were held at the Scottish Rite Cathedral on December 22, followed by a church service conducted by the Reverend Andrew G. Finnie, Pastor of Immanuel Presbyterian Church, with many distinguished Masons in attendance. Burial was in Forest Home Cemetery, Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
Sir Knight Agnew was raised a Master Mason in Kilbourn Lodge No. 3 in Milwaukee on July 16, 1894. He was exalted in Kilbourn Chapter No. 1 in Milwaukee on October 5, 1894, and received the Cryptic Degrees in Wisconsin Council No. 4 on April 24, 1895.
He became a member of the Scottish Rite Bodies of Milwaukee on November 1901. He was Sovereign Prince of Wisconsin Council P. of J. from 1908 to 1910. He received the 330 on September 1911, and was crowned an active member of the Supreme Council on September 23, 1920, and served for many years as Grand Marshal General and as a member and chairman of important committees. In 1927 he was elected Deputy of the Supreme Council for the District of Wisconsin. On September 29, 1948, he was elected an Emeritus member of the Supreme Council.
He was the first Sovereign of St. Wilfred Conclave No. 52, Red Cross of Constantine. He served as Intendant General for the state of Wisconsin for many years before being elected Grand Sovereign of the Grand Imperial Council on May 23, 1942. He was a member of the Royal Order of Scotland, Tripoli Temple, AAONMS, and an Honorary Member of the National Sojourners.
Sir Knight Agnew was created a Knight Templar in Wisconsin Commandery No. 1 of Milwaukee on November 27, 1900, and was elected Eminent Commander in 1909. In 1920 he became Grand Commander of the Grand Commandery of Wisconsin.
In 1922 he was appointed Grand Warder of the Grand Encampment and was elected Grand Generalissimo in 1931. On the death of Grand Master Walker in 1932, he became acting Grand Master. At the Conclave held in San Francisco in 1934 he was elected Grand Master of the Grand Encampment. He was the Representative of the Great Priory of Helvetia (Switzerland) near the Grand Encampment of the United States.
Sir Knight Agnew was dignified in appearance and impressive, not only in his public addresses, but also in his personal contacts. He was able in his discussions and decisions, and was highly respected by all who had worked with him in community and fraternal affairs.
Reference: From Dr. Francis J. Scully's...History of the Grand Encampment, Chapter XXIII, Biographies Of The Grand Masters, as published in the Knight Templar Magazine, January 1995 Edition, page 16, and the April 1995 Edition, page 16