- 1 BETH-HORON LODGE
- 2 REFERENCES IN GRAND LODGE PROCEEDINGS
- 2.1 ANNIVERSARIES
- 2.2 VISITS BY GRAND MASTER
- 2.3 BY-LAW CHANGES
- 2.4 HISTORY
- 2.5 OTHER
- 2.6 GRAND LODGE OFFICERS
- 2.7 OTHER BROTHERS
- 2.8 DISTRICTS
- 2.9 LINKS
Chartered By: William Sewall Gardner
Charter Date: 09/13/1871 1871-151
Precedence Date: 11/15/1870
Current Status: Active; Nehoiden Lodge merged with this lodge on 07/29/2010.
- George F. Homer, 1870-1872; SN
- Benjamin F. Baker, 1873, 1874
- James E. Edgerly, 1875, 1876
- Rufus G. F. Candage, 1877-1879
- J. Emery Hoar, 1880-1882
- Thomas W. Clements, 1883, 1884
- Charles A. Bowditch, 1885, 1886
- Alfred G. Sanborn, 1887
- Lewis M. Crane, 1888, 1889; Mem
- Francis F. Morton, 1890, 1891
- George P. Johnson, 1892, 1893
- Clarence A. Delano, 1894, 1895
- Reuben S. Swan, 1896, 1897
- D. Edward Beedie, 1898, 1899
- Francis F. Whittier, 1900
- Arthur H. Bailey, 1901, 1902
- Charles A.W. Spencer, 1903, 1904
- Emery B. Gibbs, 1905, 1906
- David H. Delano, 1907, 1908
- William S. Kemp, 1909, 1910
- Milton F. Reynolds, 1911, 1912
- J. Everett Brown, 1913, 1914
- Fred B. Richardson, 1915, 1916
- Fred M. Goodwin, 1917, 1918
- Frederick A. Leavitt, 1919, 1920
- George U. Batter, 1921
- Arthur P. Crosby, 1922
- Dana S. Sylvester, 1923
- Chester F. Robart, 1924
- Leon L. Allen, 1925
- Alfred P. Waterman, 1926; SN
- Daniel A. Rollins, 1927
- David S. Reynolds, 1928
- Frederick A. Pike, 1929
- Reginald G. Sikes, 1930
- Charles Warchauer, 1931
- Donald H. Whittemore, 1932
- Charles A. Leavitt, 1933, 1934
- Howard W. Wilkins, 1935
- Samuel F. Blanchard, 1936
- Alton L. Miller, 1937
- William W. Hutchinson, 1938
- Chester H. Eastman, 1939
- Matthew S. McNeilly, 1940
- Ira S. Pidgeon, 1941
- James C. Rhodes, 1942
- Robert M. Boehner, 1943
- Lawrence A. Bower, 1944
- William A. Charlton, 1945
- Dell W. Turner, 1946
- Ernest L. Fuller, 1947
- Charles E. Frey, 1948
- Lawrence L. Allen, 1949
- George A. Johnson, 1950
- Eugene P. Carver, Jr., 1951
- Harold F. Cooke, 1952
- John C. Watt, 1953
- Everett A. Williams, 1954
- John H. Coffin, 1955
- George F. McNeilly, 1956
- George A. Eckian, 1957
- Howard E. Perry, 1958; N
- Richard W. Nichols, 1959
- Harry J. Roberts, 1960
- Allison B. Stanley, 1961
- Norman W. Crew, 1962
- L. Milton Reynolds, 1963
- Earl J. Smith, 1964
- H. Clark Hubler, 1965
- George P. Rassias, 1966
- John B. Morison, 1967
- James F. Otis, 1968
- Kenneth L. Whitney, 1969
- Peter G. Richter, 1970, 2004
- James G. Argus, 1971
- Frank Bugley, 1972
- Harold F. Lowell, 1973
- John M. Inglis, 1974
- Donald D. Lowell, 1975, 1986; N
- Raymond G. Benson, 1976
- Thomas I. Day, 1977
- Robert A. Morrison, 1978
- John W.W. Maxon, 1979, 1985
- John Badger, 1980
- T.R. Ronald Knox, 1981
- Henri J.A. Laprime, 1982
- Jo D. Williams, 1983, 1996, 1999
- Kevin D. Bittner, 1984
- Robert C. Roberge, 1987, 1988
- Charles R. Stone, 1989, 1990
- Edwin B. Lynch, 1991
- C. Mark Van Horn, 1992
- Michael M. Messinger, 1993, 2000
- Jean H.A. Laprime, 1994, 1995
- Douglas C. Morgan, 1997, 1998
- Bradford N. Kinne, 2001-2003
- Thomas J. Hill, III, 2005, 2006
- Henry Q. Dowd, 2007, 2008
- Aaron J. Bittner, 2009, 2010
- Bruce M. Newman, 2010, 2011
- Jean Robert Laprime, 2012
REFERENCES IN GRAND LODGE PROCEEDINGS
- Petition for Dispensation: 1870
- Petition for Charter: 1871
- Consolidation Petition (with Nehoiden Lodge): 2010
- 1920 (50th Anniversary)
- 1930 (60th Anniversary)
- 1945 (75th Anniversary)
- 1970 (Centenary)
- 1996 (125th Anniversary)
VISITS BY GRAND MASTER
- 1871 (Gardner; Constitution of Lodge and installation)
- 1875 (Everett)
- 1878 (Welch; installation)
- 1880 (Welch; installation)
- 1891 (Wells)
- 1893 (Deputy Grand Master Shepard; installation)
- 1894 (Weld; 2 visits, including installation)
- 1895 (Holmes)
- 1896 (Holmes; installation)
- 1901 (Gallagher)
- 1903 (Sanford; hall dedication)
- 1906 (Blake)
- 1914 (M. Johnson; 2 visits: Ladies' Night in Whitney Hall and presentation of mural The Building of King Solomon's Temple by Bro. Albert M. Hazard)
- 1918 (L. Abbott)
- 1919 (L. Abbott)
- 1920 (Prince; 50th Anniversary)
- 1930 (H. Dean; 60th Anniversary)
- 1945 (Wragg; 75th Anniversary)
- 1951 (Roy; reception for Deputy Grand Master Alton L. Miller)
- 1953 (Roy)
- 1964 (Osgood; reception for Bro. Albert M. Higgs)
- 1969 (Jaynes; Firefighters' Degree Team)
- 1970 (Jaynes; Centenary)
- 1982 (Berquist)
- 1996 (A. Johnson; 125th Anniversary)
- 2010 (Pageau; 125th Anniversary)
- 1920 (50th Anniversary History, 1920-414; see below)
- 1945 (75th Anniversary History, 1945-396; see below)
- 1970 (Centenary History, 1970-534; see below)
- 1996 (125th Anniversary History, Epilogue, 1996-233)
50TH ANNIVERSARY HISTORY, NOVEMBER 1920
From Proceedings, Page 1920-414:
By Right Worshipful Emery B. Gibbs.
In 1869 and 1870 a few Masons in Brookline began talking about organizing a Lodge in the town, and after many conferences and parlor caucuses it was determined to petition the Grand Lodge for a Dispensation. This was soon done, and on November 15, A.D. 1870, a formal Dispensation was granted, as is matter of record. The first regular communication of Beth-horon Lodge, under Dispensation, was held in Lyceum Hall in Brookline on Tuesday, the thirteenth day of December, A.D. 1870. There were present:
- Worshipful Master George F. Homer
- Senior Warden Benjamin F. Baker
- Junior Warden James W. Edgerly, and
- William K. Melcher
- Marshall Russell
- Martin Kingman
- William Aspinwall
- Thomas H. Bacon
- John W. Candler
- Charles O. Foster and
- Rufus G. F. Candage
— eleven in all.
The Worshipful Master appointed the following officers:
- Marshall Russell, Treasurer
- William Aspinwall, Secretary
- William K. Melcher, Senior Deacon
- Charles H. Drew, Junior Deacon
- Charles K. Kirby, Senior Steward
- Thomas E. Shewell, Junior Steward
- Rufus G. F. Candage, Marshal
No Inside Sentinel, no Tyler, and no Chaplain were mentioned in the records.
Senior Warden Baker reported that the Lodge-room would be ready for the next regular communication. The Worshipful Master reported that the furniture for the Lodge-room had been ordered. A Committee on Regalia was appointed.
Horace James' application for degrees was read at the first meeting.
At the meeting on January 10, 1871, the Worshipful Master presented a beautiful copy of the Holy Bible, the gift of Robert S. Davis, Esq., of Brookline, in memory of his deceased brother, General Phineas Stearns Davis, who was an honored member of our Craft. This Bible is still preserved.
At the same meeting a communication was received from Brother Henry G. Fay, a member of Zetland Lodge, asking the Lodge "to accept from him the accompanying Square and Compasses, to be used with that other Greater Light which has already been placed in the most prominent place for that and these." The Dispensation ended September 13, the date of the meeting of the Grand Lodge, and evidently the records were returned to the Grand Lodge and retained until October 23, when the Lodge was Constituted. There is no record of any communication on the second Tuesday of October, 1871.
On Monday, the twenty-third day of October, 1871, the M. W. Grand Lodge of Massachusetts visited Beth-horon Lodge at its Lodge-room in Lyceum Hall in Brookline and Constituted and formed the same into a Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons. The officers of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge present were: Most Worshipful William Sewall Gardner, Grand Master; Right Worshipful Charles Levi Woodbury, Deputy Grand Master; Right Worshipful Sereno D. Nickerson, acting Senior Grand Warden; Right Worshipful Henry Mulliken, acting Junior Grand Warden; Right Worshipful John McClellan, Grand Treasurer; Worshipful Nathan J. Simonds, acting Grand Secretary; Right Worshipful Rev. Charles H. Titus, acting Chaplain; Brother Frank E. Jones, acting Grand Tyler.
After the ceremony of Consecration and Dedication had been performed, the Most Worshipful Grand Master, William Sewall Gardner, with the assistance of his officers, installed the following officers of Beth-horon Lodge:
- George F. Homer, Worshipful Master.
- Benjamin B. Baker, Senior Warden.
- James W. Edgerly, Junior "Warden.
- Marshall Russell, Treasurer.
- William Aspinwall, Secretary.
- William K. Melcher, Senior Deacon.
- Charles H. Drew, Junior Deacon.
- R. G. F. Candage, Marshal.
- Charles K. Kirby, Senior Steward.
- Thomas B. Shewell, Junior Steward.
- Martin Kingman, Inside Sentinel.
- William A. Goodwin, Tyler.
No Chaplain is mentioned.
After the installation of the officers, the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge retired and the Lodge was closed in due form.
How simple and dignified reads the record of the most important event in the history of the Lodge. The record does not disclose the members present — a small group of earnest, devoted Brethren, in a small hall with meager furnishings, without decoration of ornamentation. The little bend found the financial burdens heavy, but they were stout-hearted and cheerfully contributed of their substance to maintain the Lodge.
On November 14, 1871, was held the first regular communication under the Charter, with sixteen Brethren present.
On September 24, 1872, at a special communication, came the first official visit of the District Deputy Grand Master. There were thirty Brethren present. The record reads:
The Deputy District Grand Master of the Fourth District with his suite visited the Lodge and made his annual official examination. Work on Third Degree. The District Deputy Grand Master having expressed his satisfaction with the condition and work of the Lodge, withdrew with his suite."
On October 8, 1872, a committee was appointed to procure a device for a seal for the Lodge and to report back to the Lodge. On May 13, 1873, progress was reported, and P. W. Homer was added to the committee. On March 10, 1874, this seal was adopted:
The seal is a representation of an oriental scene in the pass of Beth-horon on the road from Joppa to Jerusalem. The castellated walls with the gateway seem to invite the traveler to rest and repose.
Above the scene is the All Seeing Eye and the motto, Unde veniret auxilium nostrum (Whence cometh our help), and the whole alludes to the Lodge with its sheltering doors, and to Him in whom we reverentially put our trust. The design is the suggestion of the Past Master of this Lodge, and, with the motto, are the results of careful thoughts. It was cheerfully accepted by the committee.
The design of your committee was very handsomely executed by our worthy Brother, William E. Stratton, who was kind enough to present it to the Lodge, with his best wishes. The drawing by Mr. Stratton was pronounced so fine by the best judges, that it was determined to have the same cut by a competent engraver of the highest artistic skill, and Mr. Henry Mitchell was selected at the suggestion of Wor. Bro. Richard Briggs, who now generously presents the accompanying seal and impression to Beth-horon Lodge as a token of his friendship and brotherly love to the Lodge."
The name "Beth-boron," adopted by the Lodge, is of Hebrew origin, "Beth" signifying house, and "horon" cavern in the hills; specifically meaning temple, or house of worship.
On January 14, 1873, Brother "William Aspinwall presented to Past Master Homer a very beautiful Past Master's jewel.
On March 11, 1873, Wor. Bro. Homer is mentioned as Chaplain. This is the first time in the records of Beth-horon that the presence of a Chaplain appears. At this meeting it was voted: "That the dues of the Secretary and Treasurer and the Chaplain be remitted." Then the following vote appears: "That in consideration of his eminent services to the Lodge the dues of the late Secretary, Bro. "William Aspinwall, if paid, be refunded to him. How cautious and canny the reservation — there was to be no duplication of even so small compensation by returning any dues not actually paid!
September 8, 1874, a committee composed of the Worshipful Master and the Senior and Junior Wardens was appointed to see about accommodations for the Lodge in the new building about to be erected by Mr. Oliver Cousens on the corner of Harvard and School streets. Wor. Master Edgerly, Senior Warden Kirby, Junior Warden Hackett, and Brothers Candage, Melcher, Baker, Poster, Cotting, Goddard, Woodward, Bird, and Collins constituted this committee.
On May 11, 1875, after receiving the report of the committee to procure suitable rooms for the Lodge, a committee was appointed to execute a lease with Mr. Cousens for new rooms in a building at the corner of Harvard and School Streets, also to fit up and decorate the new rooms and arrange for their dedication.
On June 22, 1875, a special communication in Lyceum Hall was the last meeting in that hall. The officers and five members were present and two visitors.
On September 14, 1875, the first meeting was held in the new hall. Twelve members and eleven visitors were present. Oliver Cousens was elected to take the degrees. He was owner of the building and the landlord of the Lodge. On motion of George F. Homer it was voted: "That the first three officers of the Lodge, together with three Brethren, be a committee with full power to arrange for the dedication of the new Lodge-room and the reception of the District Deputy Grand Master at his annual visit to the Lodge. Wor. George F. Homer, B. F. Baker, and William K. Melcher were appointed on the committee.
On September 28, 1875, a special communication was held at four o'clock in the afternoon, to dedicate the new hall. Most Worshipful Percival Lowell Everett, Grand Master, with Most Worshipful William Parkman as Senior Grand Warden, Most Worshipful Sereno D. Nickerson as Junior Grand Warden, Right Worshipful William T. R. Marvin as Grand Treasurer, Right Worshipful Charles A. Welch as Deputy Grand Marshal, officiated in the ceremony, and twenty-three members and one hundred and twenty-five visitors, ladies and gentlemen, were assembled to witness the Dedication. After labor they "spent a pleasant hour in social conversation and partaking of a collation." At seven o'clock in the evening Right Worshipful George F. Homer, District Deputy Grand Master for the Fourth Masonic District, was received with his suite and made his official inspection at this time. Oliver Cousens, the owner of the building in which the new hall was just dedicated, was made a Mason at the first meeting and first visitation in the new hall. The Lodge was closed at 8.30 p.m.
At the annual meeting on December 14, 1875, eleven members and two visitors were present. The report of the Finance Committee of the Lodge, covering the period of its existence and giving a favorable view of the future, was given. After the election of officers this appears in the record: Voted: That the Treasurer be authorized to give certificates of indebtedness of the Lodge, bearing interest, to such creditors as shall be willing to receive them. On notice of Bro. B. F. Baker, it was voted: "That the thanks of the Lodge be given to Bro. Royal Woodward for his gift of a beautiful clock which adorns the banquet room, and that the Secretary notify Bro. Woodward of the action of the Lodge, also to request a suitable picture of himself to be hung beside the clock, said picture to be at the expense of the Lodge.
On December 28, 1875, a special communication for the installation of the officers by R. W. George F. Homer, District Deputy Grand Master for the Fourth Masonic District, was held, with seven members and three visitors present. The Lodge had a membership of sixty.
On April 11, 1876, the Treasurer reported that the Lodge was still indebted to several parties on account of furnishings for the Lodge-room, also that several members of the Lodge had offered to advance money toward the payment of this indebtedness upon certificates bearing interest and signed by the Treasurer of the Lodge. He recommended that the Lodge give authority to the Treasurer to borrow money to pay the remainder upon a note endorsed by the Treasurer, James W. Edgerly, and R. G. F. Candage, who had offered to do so.
On April 15, 1876, at a special communication, officers and twelve Brothers were present. The Wor. Master announced the death of R. W. Bro. George F. Homer, which took place on Friday, the 14th, at his residence in this town. On motion of Bro. William Aspinwall it was voted: "That a subscription be opened for the payment of the funeral expenses of late Wor. Bro. George F. Homer, any balance to be paid to his widow; a committee of three appointed to draft resolutions; and Lodge be draped in mourning for the next three months."
On October 10, 1876, the committee reported three hundred and eighty dollars collected for the funeral of R. W. Bro. Homer. One hundred and sixty-eight dollars was paid for the funeral expenses, and the balance with interest, two hundred and fourteen dollars and sixty-five cents, was deposited for the widow in the Brookline Savings Bank.
On January 2, 1878, a special communication was held for the public installation by the Grand Lodge, Most Worshipful Charles A. Welch, Grand Master. Beth-horon opened in the reception room and formed a procession to escort the officers to the Lodge-room. At the banquet one hundred and fifty or more sat down.
Contrast this with the regular communication January 8, 1878, when only eight members and one visitor were present. Financial burdens and troubles were ever present to take the joy out of all gatherings, and as the little group faced a new landlord, the lease having four years to run, there were only sixty members, the dues were ten dollars, and the rent five hundred dollars. We now have four hundred members and the dues are still ten dollars.
On April 8, 1879, a committee appointed at the previous meeting to see if a reduction of the rent could be obtained reported that the landlord, F. F. Morton, would reduce the rent to three hundred and fifty dollars per year for two years and his degrees, if found worthy. His application was read and he was elected May 13, 1879.
On January 6, 1880, at a special communication the officers were publicly installed by Most Worshipful Charles A. Welch, Grand Master, number present not given. There was a collation and toasts, and the Lodge closed without form at 11.30 p.m.
On November 8, 1881, a special committee of five was appointed to receive subscriptions for the payment of the debt, based upon the condition that the entire amount be pledged.
On January 10, 1882, the committee asked for more time, and on February 14, 1882, reported progress and asked more time.
On March 14, 1882, the committee reported more progress and again asked for more time. At this meeting it was voted: "To take a lease of the Lodge-rooms for not less than five years, at present rate. Also that the dues be collected quarterly instead of semi-annually."
On May 9, 1882, the committee reported progress. Voted: "That whereas sufficient money has been subscribed, together with the money now in the treasury of Beth-horon Lodge, to pay the indebtedness of the Lodge, the collector is hereby directed to pay all sums collected by him to the Treasurer of the Lodge, immediately, and any responsibility which the collector has incurred to any subscriber be hereby assumed by the Lodge."
The meeting of June 13, 1882, with twelve members and five visitors present was an eventful one. The officers were as follows:
- J. Emory Hoar, Worshipful Master
- Thomas W. Clements, Senior Warden
- Manning Seaman, Junior Warden
- J. Anson Guild, Acting Treasurer
- Francis H. Bacon, Secretary
- R. G. F. Candage, Chaplain
- W. B. Seaver, Marshal
- A. G. Sanborn, Senior Deacon
- L. M. Crane, Junior Deacon
- Alonzo Bowman, Senior Steward
- George F. Dearborn, Junior Steward
- Francis J. Nash, Inside Sentinel
- Levi Doran, Tyler
The committee appointed to collect money to pay the debts of the Lodge presented the following report:
To the Master, Wardens, mid Members of Beth-horon Lodge, F. A. M.:
The committee appointed at the November communication to solicit and collect subscriptions to relieve Beth-horon Lodge from its debt, take pleasure in reporting that they have been successful in securing subscriptions and collecting the same for the full amount required. The amount of the debt of the Lodge as reported by Brothers Cram and Robinson was $1,860.82, and deducting the amount due the Lodge from its members for dues and commutation tax, which they considered good, left the amount to be raised $1,544.15. Of the amount of dues and commutation tax which they reported as 'good sometime,' $93 has been collected and about $63 received from other sources. The amount of subscriptions received and collected was $1,440, from the enclosed list of members. This amount has been paid over to the Treasurer, who has paid all the notes and bills of the Lodge in full to April 1, 1882, with the exception of the note of Bro. C. K. Kirby, dated November 1, 1877, for $100, and interest to June 1, 1882, amounting to $127.50. From this amount Bro. Kirby owes the Lodge for dues and commutation tax $68, leaving a balance due Mr. Kirby $59.50. The Treasurer has written several times regarding this note but has received no reply, and as it is generally conceded that Mr. Kirby would give the amount of his debt at any time the debt of the Lodge was raised, your committee thought best to make no provision for it now. The amount of the notes paid by the Treasurer are, including interest: P. W. Pierce, $761.25; B. F. Baker, $180.98; J. Anson Guild, $404.31; J. Emory Hoar, $115.16; T. W. Clements, $72.15. The Tyler has been paid in full to April 1, 1882, also bill of Mr. Baker for painting, and all other bills known to the committee to the same date. There is still due the Lodge for dues to April 1, 1882, $643.27. Of this amount $267.17 is considered good, and the balance, $376.10, 'good sometime.'
Your committee think that at the last meeting of this year the matter of delinquent dues should be brought up and some action taken regarding them. They would offer the following vote:
Voted, That at the last regular communication of each year the finance committee shall make a written report of the exact financial condition of the Lodge, showing the amount due by the Lodge, the amount of cash on hand and the amount of unpaid dues, with a list of the delinquents.
This report was signed by R. G. F. Candage, J. Anson Guild, L. M. Crane, Francis H. Bacon, and Thomas T. Robinson. The report of the committee was accepted and the vote recommended was adopted.
Brother J. Emory Hoar presented the following resolution:
Resolved, That the thanks of Beth-horon Lodge is especially due to Bro. Thomas T. Robinson for his interest and indefatigable efforts resulting in the successful and complete liquidation of the debt which has so long and heavily weighed upon the Lodge. While we would not depreciate the credit due to others, we believe the triumphant issue of this effort is especially due to Bro. Thomas T. Robinson.
This resolution was adopted. Then follows a list of thirty-nine members who subscribed the $1,440. Five gave $100 each, one $75, six $50, one $40, two $30, eleven $25, two $15, six $10, and three $5, out of a total membership of seventy.
At the annual meeting, December 12, 1882, the "Finance Committee of the Lodge presented their annual report, showing a favorable condition of its pecuniary affairs and a bright prospect in the future."
After the election it was voted that the installation be public, and on motion of Bro. Robinson, a committee of nine was appointed to arrange for it and collect the necessary funds. There is no report of this committee. The installation was public and the rooms well filled with ladies and gentlemen, present by invitation. Right Worshipful Henry G. Fay, Past Junior Grand Warden of the Grand Lodge, was the installing officer.
At the annual meeting, December 11, 1883, Bro. T. T. Robinson moved, That a Charity Fund be created from the dues of the Lodge and one-half of the fees of initiates. This motion was laid upon the table (where it still lies).
From the first Beth-horon has carefully and faithfully looked after its own members, and the widows and orphans who were in distress. For many years this was done by individual subscription and contribution to meet each case as it arose. When we recall how heavy the burden was for maintaining the Lodge, the gifts and contributions for charity loom up like princely sums, and the gifts were indeed splendid in purpose and effect. Not until the Lodge entered upon its larger life and increased its membership was it possible to have a real Charity Fund. On April 11, 1899, Bro. Edward W. Baker gave one hundred dollars for the Charity Fund in memory of his father. This was the beginning of Beth-horon's Charity Fund, now held by trustees. While the fund at present is not large, it is substantial and in a healthy condition.
Beth-horon Lodge has been honored by visits of MW. Grand Masters, as follows:
- William Sewall Gardner, G. M., October 23, 1871, for the purpose of Constituting Beth-horon Lodge and installing the officers.
- Percival Lowell Everett, G. M., September 28, 1875, for the purpose of Dedicating Masonic Hall, Harvard and School Streets.
- Charles A. Welch, G. M., January 2, 1878, for the purpose of installing the officers of Beth-horon, and again January 6, 1880, for the same purpose. In both instances the installation was public.
- Samuel Wells, G. M., April 14, 1891.
- Edwin B. Holmes, G. M., January 8, 1895, for the purpose of making a social visit.
- Baalis Sanford, G. M., April 7, 1903, for the purpose of dedicating the present Masonic apartments.
- J. Albert Blake, G. M., January 23, 1906, guest at a public installation.
Beth-horon has contributed to the Grand Lodge a Grand Sword Bearer (Worshipful J. Everett Brown), also a Senior Grand Deacon (Worshipful Emery B. Gibbs), three District Deputy Grand Masters (George P. Homer, Lewis M. Crane, and Emery B. Gibbs), and one Deputy Grand Master (Right Worshipful Emery B. Gibbs). Besides these honors the Lodge has had the great honor of having one of its members unanimously elected Grand Master for three consecutive terms, a distinction enjoyed by no other Grand Master, nor does it lessen our joy and pleasure to know that we share this honor with Columbian Lodge, which still holds one undivided half interest in our most distinguished member, Most Worshipful Leon M. Abbott.
In our fifty years there have been twenty-five Masters. Two served for three years each, and two served for one year each, while twenty-one served for two years each.
We have had five different Treasurers: Marshall Russell, who served from the Institution of the Lodge un o' January, 1873, a period of two years; David Damon, who served from January, 1873, until his death, September 19, 1876, when J. Anson Guild became acting Treasurer, until his election in December, 1876. Bro. Guild continued in office until his death, March 15, 1890, a service of fourteen years. Wor. R. G. F. Candage was elected Treasurer, December, 1890, and served for nearly seventeen years, when illness prevented. Wor. Charles A. W. Spencer was elected December, 1907, and is now serving his thirteenth year.
The first Secretary was Hon. William Aspinwall, who served the Lodge until January; 1873, a period of about three years, when George M. Towle was elected and served two years. The third Brother to be elected Secretary was Francis H. Bacon, who served from 1874 until his death, January 21, 1898, a period of twenty-three years. February 8, 1898, under a special dispensation, Wor. Charles A. Bowditch was elected and has so well performed the duties of his office that the Lodge has acquired the habit of unanimously re-electing him to this important position, where he is now serving his twenty-third term.
Of Chaplains there was none, at least the records do not disclose one, until the meeting of March 11, 1873, and the first installation of Chaplain was January 7, 1874 — Wor. George F. Homer, the first Master of the Lodge. There have been twelve different Chaplains, of whom five were clergymen and seven were laymen.
Of Tylers there were many during the first year. October 23, 1871, Willard A. Goodwin was installed the first Tyler. January 14, 1913, David A. Kenrick began and is now serving acceptably and faithfully. The Lodge has had eight Tylers, all good men and true.
The Lodge met for five years, November 15, 1870, to June 22, 1875, in Lyceum Hall, Brookline Village. The membership during that period was twenty-six to sixty. The average attendance was about twenty and the largest recorded attendance was thirty-five.
For the next twenty-seven years, September 14, 1875, to September, 1902, the Lodge met in Masonic Hall, corner of Harvard and School Streets. In 1880 the average attendance was twenty-two. In 1890 the membership had risen to ninety-six, with an average attendance of thirty-three, and a largest attendance of forty-five*. In 1900 the membership was one hundred and thirty-nine, but the average attendance was only thirty-five, and the largest fifty.
From September, 1902, to March, 1903, the Lodge was the guest of Bethesda Lodge, of Brighton, meeting in Bethesda's quarters. Our present quarters were first occupied in March, 1903. In 1905 the average attendance was sixty-two, and the largest was ninety-five.
In 1910 the membership was two hundred and forty-four, with an average attendance of fifty-eight, and a largest attendance of seventy-nine. In 1915 the average attendance rose to seventy-five, and the largest to one hundred and eight. The present membership is four hundred.
The largest attendance on record was on the official visit of the District Deputy Grand Master on November 11, 1913: one hundred and ten members, one hundred and sixty-two visitors, and a suite of about thirty — at least three hundred in all. Worshipful J. Everett Brown was the Master at this time.
On September 12, 1893, the Lodge approved forming a Masonic Building Association for the purpose of purchasing land and erecting thereon a building to be used in part for Masonic purposes. On February 12, 1895, the rent of the Masonic rooms was raised from three hundred and fifty dollars to five hundred dollars per annum, and the question of Lodge-rooms was again discussed. Finally, after much talk, on September 10, 1895, a lease for five years at five hundred dollars per year was made with the new owner of the building. Worshipful Bro. Morton, for sixteen years, 1879 to 1895, gave Beth-horon the very low rental of three hundred and fifty dollars per year. Think what that meant to the Lodge!
Again in June, 1898, the need of new Lodge-rooms and the advantage of owning a building were seriously discussed and a committee was appointed to consider the matter and if advisable to organize a corporation for that purpose. On September 29, 1898, the committee asked for more time. After this the proposition in one form or another was frequently considered until January 14, 1902, when another committee was appointed to investigate and report on a plan by which the Brookline National Bank would remodel its building and provide the present quarters at the corner of Harvard and Kent Streets. The following were made the committee to attend to the details and raise funds to furnish the new rooms: "Worshipful Master Bailey, Brothers Candage, Crane, Geo. P. Johnson, C. A. Delano, Conant, Holtzer, Spencer, Gibbs, Kemp, and F. F. Forbes, The new Masonic apartments were formally Dedicated by the Grand Lodge on April 7, 1903, on which occasion Beth-horon Lodge was organized as follows:
- Worshipful C. A. W. Spencer, Worshipful Master.
- Emery B. Gibbs, Senior Warden.
- David H. Delano, Junior Warden.
- Worshipful R. G. P. Candage, Treasurer.
- Worshipful Charles A. Bowditch, Secretary.
- Rev. George M. Gerrish, Chaplain.
- Frederick A. Leavitt, Marshal.
- William S. Kemp, Senior Deacon.
- Milton P. Reynolds, Junior Deacon.
- J. Everett Brown, Senior Steward.
- Otto P. Shreuder, Junior Steward.
- H. J. Murray, Jr., Inside Sentinel.
- George W. Baker, Tyler.
Most Worshipful Baalis Sanford, Grand Master of Masons in Massachusetts, was assisted in the Dedication by the following Grand Officers:
- R. W. J. Gilman Waite, Deputy Grand Master
- R. W. John A. McKim, Senior Grand Warden
- R. W. William H. H. Soule, Junior Grand Warden
- M. W. Edwin B. Holmes, Past Grand Master
- M. W. Charles T. Gallagher, Past Grand Master
- R. W. Charles H. Ramsay, Grand Treasurer
- R. W. Sereno D. Nickerson, Grand Secretary
- W. Rev. Charles A. Skinner, Grand Chaplain
- W. Frank W. Mead, Grand Marshal
- W. Frederic L. Putnam, Senior Grand Deacon
- W. Otis H. Marion, Junior Grand Deacon
- W. Walter F. Medding, Senior Grand Steward
- W. Arthur W. Bickford and W. William H. Emerson, Junior Grand Stewards
- Brother George W. Chester, Grand Tyler
- Brother W. H. Gerrish, Organist
More than two hundred Brethren witnessed the impressive ceremony, and at its conclusion a banquet was served in the banquet hall. These rooms were furnished at a cost of about five thousand five hundred dollars, and paid for without great distress. Here the Lodge has been happy and prosperous, increasing in numbers and substance.
Beth-horon has had a moving spirit. The reason is not hard to find — the purpose in moving was always to find better accommodations. And keeping true to the moving spirit, there is now a committee of the Lodge, appointed December 9, 1919, "to consider the question of more commodious quarters."
An interesting event in connection with the celebration of the fiftieth anniversary of Beth-horon was the Institution of a new Lodge, named "Brookline Lodge," the brief ceremony being' performed by Right Worshipful James Young, Jr., District Deputy Grand Master for the Fifth Masonic District. The principal officers of the new Lodge, all members of Beth-horon — Wor. J. Everett Brown, Master; Wor. Frederick A. Leavitt, Senior Warden ; Rev. Bro. J. Ralph Magee, Junior Warden — were inducted into office, and the proclamation was made by the District Deputy Grand Marshal.
Something of the men who organized Beth-horon Lodge is of historical interest:
George P. Homer, the first Worshipful Master of Beth-horon Lodge, was elected Moderator of the annual town-meeting March 5, 1849, twenty-one years before the institution of the Lodge, and it appears in the Town Reports that he served as Moderator more than twenty times. He was Representative to the Legislature in 1867 and 1868. He served as Assistant Assessor, Town Clerk pro tern., Trustee of the Public Library, member of the School Committee, 1847, 1848, 1849, and 1852. He also served on many town committees.
Benjamin P. Baker, the first Senior Warden and the second Worshipful Master of Beth-horon, was one of the best known men in the town. He came to Brookline in 1841 and in 1852 was elected Town Clerk. At this town-meeting George P. Homer was Moderator, and William As-pinwall was Town Clerk, but was not a candidate for reelection. Eighty-eight ballots were cast—-necessary for choice, forty-five. Mr. Baker had forty-five, and was elected. The forty-five ballots were prophetic of his forty-five subsequent annual elections as Town Clerk until his death, September 10, 1898, making a continuous service of forty-six years and seven months. His personality was well expressed in his unique and beautiful style of writing the records. His reports to the state are models and were often the subject of favorable comment. He was Representative to the Legislature, and probably did more than any other man to establish the Brookline Public Library in 1857, which was one of the first if not the first in Massachusetts to be supported by public money. He served almost continuously on its Board of Trustees until his death, over forty-one years in all. In passing it is well to note that his son, Edward W. Baker, a member of Beth-horon, was appointed by the Selectmen to fill the vacancy caused by his father's death in September, 1898, and so well has he performed the duties of the office that he has been elected Town Clerk for twenty-one consecutive terms and bids fair to equal or exceed his father's long service.
James W. Edgerly, the first Junior Warden, and the third Worshipful Master of Beth-horon, served as Selectman in 1871, and for several years, till 1879.
William Aspinwall, the first Secretary of Beth-horon, was the son of Col. Thomas Aspinwall, who was United States Consul General at London, England, 1815 to 1853. William was born in London, February 16, 1819, and when fifteen years old he came to this country, entered Harvard, and was graduated in the class of 1838, when he was nineteen years old. He studied law and received the degree of LL.B. in 1840, and was admitted to the bar in 1841. In 1847 he made his home in Brookline, where he served as Town Clerk from 1850 to 1852, was Representative to the Legislature from 1851 to 1852, and was a member of the Constitutional Convention, 1853, and State Senator, 1854. He served as Assessor, Selectman, Water Commissioner, and was for many years on the Board of Trustees of the Public Library.
Charles H. Drew, the first Senior Steward of Beth-horon, served the town for many years as Selectman, at one time as chairman of the Board. He served many times as Moderator, also as chairman of the Water Board. He was Trustee of the Public Library and for many years chairman of the Board. His most distinguished service was as Judge of the Municipal Court, which office he held for many years.
Rufus George Frederick Candage, familiarly known as Capt. Candage, was the first Marshal of Beth-horon. He served the town in many ways and for many years. Many times he was Moderator, and a member of many important committees. He was Trustee of the Public Library for nearly thirty years and its Treasurer for many years. He was one of the Assessors for twenty-one years, 1885 to 1906, much of the time as the chairman. He was also a Representative to the Legislature. Capt. Candage was best known to the Lodge as its Treasurer, serving from 1890 a period of eighteen years, his last meeting being June 19, 1907.
John W. Candler, one of the charter members, was one of Beth-horon's most distinguished Brothers. He served as Trustee of the Public Library from 1864 to 1873. He was Brookline's Representative to the Legislature in 1866, and later was elected to represent this district in Congress. While it was working under Dispensation in 1871 he presented to Beth-horon Lodge the silver jewels worn by the Master and Wardens as the badge of their offices, and also the working tools. The same jewels and working tools are in use to-day.
Horace James, who was the first one to apply for and to receive the degrees in Beth-horon, held a unique place in the history of the town. He was elected to the Board of Selectmen in March, 1867, and every year thereafter, with the exception of one year, when he was not a candidate, for the period of forty-five years, ending at his death, April 26, 1912.
In 1871, when the Lodge was Constituted, four of the five Selectmen were members of Beth-horon, viz.: William Aspinwall, J. W. Edgerly, Horace James, and Charles K. Kirby.
Time forbids further recital of the public services and positions held by the founders of Beth-horon. Only one of the charter members is now living, Worshipful Alfred G. Sanborn, who is present to-night, together with every other living Past Master.
Among other benefactors of the Lodge in more recent days we cannot forget the continued interest of our late Brother Jerome Jones, who, soon after our present apartments were occupied, presented the Lodge with a handsome dinner set bearing a reproduction of the seal of the Lodge and the names of its Past Masters. The beautiful and elaborate mural painting, representing King Solomon and the workers in the Temple, that adorns the wall of the reception room, was the handiwork of our Brother Arthur M. Hazard, the possession of which was made possible only by his cooperation and generous contribution. The poi'-traits of the Past Masters of Beth-horon, in uniform design and framing, were the gift of Brother George H. Wightman, and the Roll of Honor, beautifully engrossed and framed, was the gift of our generous and patriotic Brother, Lieut. Samuel C. Burgess. Among other memorable gifts were the handsome Lodge banner and the National and State flags, presented, through the instrumentality of Brother Alfred P. Waterman, by the candidates admitted under his instruction. The handsome mirror in the reception room reflects the generosity of Brother Marshal Fabyan.
This sketch would not be complete without some reference to the thirty-four members of Beth-horon who so splendidly gave themselves to the service of their country in the great World War. One, the youngest of them all, made the supreme sacrifice and a gold star shines on our service flag in sweet and tender remembrance. To these our Brothers by sacred ties, we acknowledge our deep indebtedness for the great service they have rendered to us and to humanity. We still look to them for service of the same high purpose in restoring and establishing peace and a sane and stable administration in our civil and political affairs.
ROLL OF HONOR
- Walter W. Austin
- Sherwood B. Blodgett
- Leonard G. Bradford
- Henry W. Brown
- Samuel C. Burgess
- Arthur A. Cushing
- Stewart Dalzell, Jr.
- George R. Fink
- Chester R. Fowler
- Earl C. Fowler
- Melville W. Grant
- Martin Hamilton
- Walter S. Howes
- Benjamin James
- John C. Jones, Jr.
- Harold E. Kenney
- Philip C. Kneil
- James Macnaughtan
- Frederick B. Moseley
- Howard E. Plimpton
- Ralph L. Pope
- Walter A. Powers
- Phillips B. Quinsler
- Chester P. Robart
- Ralph H. Rowe
- Paul K. Sellew
- John H. Sherburne
- Norman C. Spencer
- Charles S. Warshauer
- Harry D. Webb ★
- Leslie I. Williamson
- Albert B. Wood
- Frederick J. Wood
- Dexter Young
★ = Died in service.
75TH ANNIVERSARY HISTORY, NOVEMBER 1945
From Proceedings, Page 1945-396:
By Worshipful Matthew S. McNeilly.
Brethren, it is rather fitting that we celebrate our seventy-fifth anniversary on the same evening that the formal dispensation was granted by the Grand Lodge — November 15, 1870.
During the year 1869, several Masons in Brookline had the happy thought of organizing a Masonic Lodge in the Town of Brookline. Meetings were held in various homes, which culminated in a petition being sent to the Grand Lodge for a dispensation. On November 15, 1870, this dispensation was granted and the first regular communication which is spread upon the records was held Tuesday evening, December 13, 1870. Old familiar Brookline names are recognized from the members in attendance at this first meeting:
- George F. Homer, Worshipful Master
- Benjamin F. Baker, Senior Warden
- James W. Edgerly, Junior Warden
and Brothers William K. Melcher, Marshall Russell, Martin Kingman, William Aspinwall, Thomas H. Bacon, John W. Candler, Charles O. Foster and Rufus G. F. Candage.
It is interesting to observe that some of the above named Brethren were Town officials, serving as Moderator, Selectman or Department Head, a custom which has seemed to prevail down through the years for one or more Selectmen's names have always been found on the rolls of Beth-horon Lodge.
In the organization of the first meeting, the records do not show an Inside Sentinel, Tyler or Chaplain, but perhaps Brookline had no cowans or eavesdroppers in those days.
This first meeting was held in the Lyceum Hall, a landmark in Brookline for many years. When Brookline citizens were finally allowed to have a motion picture theatre in the Town, Lyceum Hall was demolished and the Brookline Theatre now stands on that site.
At the meeting on January 10, 1871, the Worshipful Master presented a beautiful copy of the Holy Bible, the gift of Robert S. Davis, in memory of his deceased brother, General Phineas Stearns Davis, who was an honored member of the Craft. This Bible is still preserved. At the same meeting a communication was received from Brother Henry G. Fay, a member of Zetland Lodge, asking Beth-horon Lodge to "accept from him the accompanying Square and Compasses to be used with the other Great Light."
The dispensation ended September 13, 1871, the date of the Grand Lodge meeting, and evidently the records were returned to the Grand Lodge and retained until October 23, when the Lodge was constituted.
On Monday, the twenty-third day of October, 1871, the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of Massachusetts visited Beth-horon Lodge in Lyceum Hall and constituted and formed the same into a Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons. The Most Worshipful Grand Master was William Sewall Gardner. After the ceremony of consecration and dedication, the officers previously named above were installed, plus an Inside Sentinel and Tyler. No Chaplain is mentioned.
On September 24, 1872, at a special communication, we find recorded the first official visit of the District Deputy Grand Master. Again it seems rather fitting tonight, in addition to all the other distinguished guests present, to have our own Right Worshipful Alton L. Miller present as District Deputy Grand Master for the Waltham Fifth Masonic District.
On October 8, 1872, a committee was appointed to procure a device for a seal for the Lodge and to report back to the Lodge. Reports were made at various meetings and on March 10, 1874, this seal was adopted. "The Seal is a representation of an oriental scene in the pass of Beth-horon on the road from Joppa to Jerusalem. The castellated walls with the gateway seem to invite the traveler to rest and repose. Above the scene is the All Seeing Eye and the motto Unde veniret auxilium nostrum (Whence cometh our help) and the whole alludes to the Lodge with its sheltering doors, and to Him in whom we reverentially put our trust." The design is the suggestion of a Past Master of this Lodge, and, with the motto, are the results of careful thoughts. It was cheerfully accepted by the Lodge.
The name "Beth-horon", adopted by the Lodge, is of Hebrew origin—"Beth" signifying house, and "horon" cavern in the hills, specifically meaning temple, or house of worship.
On March 11, 1873, Worshipful Brother Homer is mentioned as Chaplain and this is the first time in the records of Beth-horon that the presence of a Chaplain appears.
As far back as September 8,1874, we find our ancient Brethren with a spirit of restlessness and a desire for more adequate and better quarters. A committee was appointed on that date "to see about accommodations for the Lodge in the new building to be erected on the corner of Harvard and School Streets." On May 11, 1875, after receiving the report of the committee, a new committee was appointed to execute a lease and to fit up and decorate the new rooms and arrange for their dedication. The last meeting to be held in Lyceum Hall was June 22, 1875.
For the next few years we find our Brethren struggling along with financial worries, even though the records show increases in membership and attendance at meetings. However, some of the good Brethren possessed a spirit of barter, for we find recorded on April 8, 1879, a committee appointed at the previous meeting to see if a reduction of the rent could be obtained, reporting that the landlord, F. F. Morton, would reduce the rent to J350 per year for two years and his degrees, if found worthy. His application was read and he was elected May 13, 1879.
We find upon the records that our ancient Brethren were keenly interested in the welfare of their Brothers and help and assistance was given to various members from time to time, and on April 11, 1899, Brother Edward W. Baker gave $100 for the Charity Fund, in memory of his father. This was the beginning of Beth-horon's Charity Fund.
After meeting for twenty-seven years in Masonic Hall, Harvard and School Streets (now known as Odd Fellows Hall) another committee was appointed to see about more adequate quarters at the corner of Harvard and Kent Streets, and the committee reported that the Brookline National Bank would remodel its building and provide quarters for Beth-horon Lodge. And here we are tonight Brethren! The new Masonic Apartments were formally dedicated by the Grand Lodge on April 7, 1903. It is interesting to read "These rooms were furnished at a cost of about $5500 and paid for without great distress." Here I would note that Beth-horon still had a desire for better accommodations, for again in 1919 it is recorded that another committee was appointed, but no action was taken. Again, and only recently, in 1942, another committee, was appointed, but again no action was taken.
In 1920 is found the record of the establishment of the Permanent Fund. Also in 1920 is found the request, and approval granted, for the organization of Brookline Lodge. In 1920 too, we find Beth-horon observing its fiftieth anniversary with appropriate and happy exercises, and tonight it is most pleasant to find such Brethren as Wor. Frederick A. Leavitt, Wor. George U. Bauer, Wor. Arthur P. Crosby, Wor. Leon L. Allen, who were officers then, directing and assisting the events of this 75th anniversary. These Brethren were certainly very busy for we find that there were ten regular and twenty special meetings held and thirty-eight candidates raised.
In 1933 the By-Laws were changed and the annual meeting moved back from December to September.
The peak membership figure was reached in 1926, when 515 members were enrolled.
In World War I, thirty-four of Beth-horon's members served in the Armed Forces, and in World War II, it is interesting to observe that thirty-one of Beth-horon's members were enrolled in the Services.
Down through the years Beth-horon has been honored by having six of its members serve the Grand Lodge as District Deputy Grand Masters and one as Deputy Grand Master.
We cannot close this brief historical sketch without paying tribute to six of our members who are fifty year veterans of Beth-horon Lodge and who could undoubtedly tell us many interesting anecdotes of events in Beth-horon's seventy-five year history. They are R. W. J. Everett Brown and Brothers William D. Paine, Eugene N. Davis, Frederick L. Taylor, Harry E. Chase and Walter W. Paige.
CENTENARY HISTORY, NOVEMBER 1970
From Proceedings, Page 1970-534:
By Right Worshipful Howard E. Perry.
We are most grateful to Rt. Wor. Emery B. Gibbs for his excellent history of the first fifty years of which the following is a summary. (1920 Mass. 414-437)
On November 15, 1870, a formal dispensation was granted by Grand Lodge as a matter of record. The first regular communication of Beth-horon Lodge under dispensation was held in Lyceum Hall in Brookline on Tuesday, December 13, 1870. Present were Wor. Master, George F. Homer; Sr. Warden, Benjamin F. Baker; Jr. Warden, James W. Edgerly and Brethren William K. Melcher, Marshall Russell, Martin Kingman, William Aspinwall, Thomas H. Bacon, John W. Chandler, Charles O. Foster and Rufus G. F. Candage — eleven in all. The Master made his appointments, but no mention is made of Inside Sentinel, Tyler or Chaplain. The application for degrees of Horace James was read.
On Monday, October 23, 1871, Most Wor. William Sewall Gardner, Grand Master of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of Massachusetts, and a distinguished suite visited Beth-horon Lodge in Lyceum Hall and constituted and formed the same into a Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons. The Grand Master then installed the following officers: George F. Homer, Wor. Master; Benjamin F. Baker, Sr. Warden; James W. Edgerly, Jr. Warden; Marshall Russell, Treasurer; William Aspinwall, Secretary; William K. Melcher, Sr. Deacon; Charles H. Drew, Jr. Deacon; Rufus G. F. Candage, Marshal; Charles K. Kirby, Sr. Steward; Thomas R. Shewell, Jr. Steward; Martin Kingman, Inside Sentinel and William A. Goodwin, Tyler.
On November 14, 1871, was held the first regular communication under the charter with sixteen brethren present.
On September 24, 1872, at a special communication, the District Deputy Grand Master of the Fourth District with his suite visited the Lodge and made his annual official examination. There were thirty brethren present.
On March 11, 1873, Wor. George F. Homer is mentioned as Chaplain. This is the first lime in the records that the presence of a Chaplain appears.
On March 10, 1874, a Seal for the Lodge was adopted. It is a representation of an oriental scene in the pass of Beth-horon on the road from Joppa to Jerusalem. Above the scene is the All Seeing Eye and the motto unde veniret auxilium nostrum (Whence cometh our help); the whole alludes to the Lodge with its sheltering doors and to Him in whom we reverentially put our trust. The name Beth-horon is of Hebrew origin. "Beth" signifying house, and "horon" cavern in the hills — specifically meaning temple or house of worship.
On September 14, 1875, the first meeting was held in the new hall at the corner of Harvard and School Streets. Oliver Cousens, owner of the building, was elected to take his degrees.
On September 28, 1875, at 4:00 p.m. at a special communication, the Most Wor. Percival Lowell Everett and a distinguished suite dedicated the new hall. Present for the dedication were twenty-three members and one hundred and twenty-five visitors —ladies and gentlemen. At 7:00 p.m. Rt. Wor. George F. Homer, D. D. G. M. of the Fourth Masonic District was received with his suite and made his official inspection.
On December 28, 1875, at a special communication, Rt. Wor. George F. Homer installed the officers of the Lodge. The Lodge had a membership of sixty.
On April 15, 1876, at a special communication, the Worshipful Master announced the death of Rt. Wor. George F. Homer.
At a special communication on January 2, 1878, Most Wor. Charles A. Welch installed the officers at a public installation. At the banquet there were one hundred and fifty or more.
A committee was appointed on April 8, 1879 to see if a reduction of rent could be obtained. They reported that the new landlord, F. F. Morton, would reduce the rent to $350.00 per year for two years and the fee for his degrees if found worthy. His application was read and he was elected May 13, 1879.
At the annual meeting on December 12, 1882, the finance committee presented their annual report showing a favorable condition of its pecuniary affairs and a bright prospect in the future. After the election, it was voted that the installation be public. The rooms were filled with ladies and gentlemen as Rt. Wor. Henry G. Fay, Past Jr. Grand Warden, installed the officers.
On April 11, 1899, Bro. Edward W. Baker gave $100.00 for the Charity Fund in memory of his father. This was the beginning of Beth-horon's Charity Fund, now being held by the Trustees.
After 27 years in Masonic Hall, the Lodge moved. From September 1902 to March 1903 the Lodge was the guest of Bethesda Lodge of Brighton.
In March 1903, Beth-horon Lodge met in new apartments at the Brookline National Bank at the corner of Harvard and Kent Streets. The apartments were formally dedicated on April 7, 1903 by Most Wor. Baalis Sanford. More than 200 Brethren were present.
The largest attendance on record was an official visitation of the D.D.G.M. on November 11, 1913 — 110 members, 162 visitors and a suite of about 30. Over 300 present and Wor. J. Everett Brown was the presiding Master.
On November 15, 1920, at a special communication, Beth-horon Lodge celebrated its Fiftieth Anniversary with Most Wor. Arthur D. Prince, Grand Master of Masons of Massachusetts officiating. (1920 Mass. 413-438)
An interesting event in connection with the celebration of the 50th Anniversary was the institution of a new Lodge, named "Brookline Lodge." The brief ceremony was performed by Rt. Wor. James Young, Jr., D. D. G. M. of the Fifth Masonic District. The principal officers of the new Lodge — all members of Beth-horon Lodge were: Wor. J. Everett Brown, Master; Wor. Frederick A. Leavitt, Sr. Warden; Rev. Bro. J. Ralph Magee, Jr. Warden. They were inducted into office and the proclamation was made by the D. D. Grand Marshal.
On December 12, 1922, there was a memorial service for Wor. Alfred G. Sanborn, the last living charter member.
It is interesting to note the first two degrees were conferred upon the same candidate on the same evening, November 11, 1924.
On December 9, 1924, Most Wor. Leon M. Abbott, Past Grand Master and Honorary member of Beth-horon Lodge, officiated at a dedication of a tablet in honor of members who served in World War I.
In 1925, Bro. S. R. Allen, Chief of the Brookline Fire Department, and Bro. H. A. Rutherford, Chief of the Brookline Police Department, were Lodge Brothers; and on October 13, 1925 the application was read for Charles Lewis Hapgood, who was elected on November 10, 1925.
On April 13, 1926, the vacancy of Treasurer was filled by special dispensation. Wor. Leon L. Allen was elected and installed and remained as Treasurer for 33 years until succeeded by Wor. Everett A. Williams on September 8, 1959. There was a special resolution upon the death of Wor. Charles Amos Woodbury Spencer, and a page in the records set aside.
The Past Master raised the last candidate to the sublime degree of Master Mason on June 8, 1926. This is the first mention of a Past Master Night.
On April 10, 1928, it was moved that Beth-horon Lodge apply to the Grand Master for permission to hold a Lodge of Instruction in conjunction with other Lodges of the Fifth Masonic District as provided for in the Grand Constitution. The motion was rejected.
Wor. C. A. Bowditch was presented a substantial gift in recognition of his service as Secretary for 31 years on December 11, 1928.
On October 8, 1929, visiting officers of Brookline Lodge conferred the Fellow Craft Degree on four candidates.
December 10, 1929, Rt. Wor. Amos L. Taylor, D. D. G. M. of the Fifth Masonic District, paid the Lodge an official visitation and presented Fifty-year Medals to Wor. Charles A. Bowditch and Bro. W. B. Webber. Rt. Wor. F. B. Richardson and Wor. C. A. Bowditch were elected Honorary Members.
On April 8, 1930, it was voted to allow United Lodge of Cambridge the use of our rooms for their meeting place.
On November 11, 1930, Most Wor. Herbert W. Dean and the Officers of the Most Wor. Grand Lodge of Massachusetts paid Beth-horon a fraternal visitation. An escort committee was formed with Most Worshipful Leon M. Abbott as Chairman. Most Wor. Bro. Abbott reviewed the History of ecth-horon Lodge. Rt. Wor. Frederick W. Hamilton, Grand Secretary, spoke on the Grand Lodge functions and its goals in benevolence and charity. Most Wor. Herbert W. Dean then gave a talk on the Charity and Service work of Grand Lodge and also some very interesting facts on his recent trip around the world.
On December 9, 1930, Wor. R. G. Sykes announced that due to ill health, Wor. C. A. Bowditch, Secretary, would no longer bs able to continue in that office. Wor. A. P. Waterman was elected Secretary and the remaining officers, elected and appointed, were installed. It was voted to elect Wor. Charles A. Bowditch Secretary Emeritus of Beth-horon Lodge after 33 years of devoted and faithful service.
On January 12, 1932, Rt. Wor. Alfred P. Waterman, D. D. G. M. of the Waltham Fifth Masonic District and also Secretary of Beth-horon Lodge, paid the Lodge a Fraternal Visitation. This is the first mention of the Waltham Fifth. Most Wor. Leon M. Abbott presented Rt. Wor. Bro. Waterman a beautiful D. D. G. M. Jewel.
Guest speaker after dinner on March 8, 1932 was Bro. Frederick Deane of International Lodge in Peking, China, who spoke on Masonry in China.
At a Special Communication on May 12, 1932, the George Washington Bicentennial Celebration of the Brookline Masonic Lodges represented by Beth-horon Lodge, Donald H. Whittemore; Brookline Lodge, Wor. Miles S. Richmond; United Lodge, Wor. Harry Silverman, was held at the Leyden Congregational Church in Brookline.
On October 11, 1932, Past Grand Master, Most Wor. Melvin M. Johnson, was present and paid a fine tribute to the memory of Most Worshipful Leon M. Abbott, Honorary Member of Beth-horon Lodge, who died October 10, 1932.
On May 9, 1933. it was voted to amend ihe By-Laws to read: "The annual meeting shall be held on the second Tuesday in September; the accounts of the Secretary and Treasurer be audited by a Certified Public Accountant appointed by the Master and Wardens." It was also voted to transfer $1,000 from the Charity Fund to provide for needy cases of relief.
Wor. and Honorable Edwin O. Childs, D.D. Grand Marshal and Mayor of Newton gave the Lodge a very inspiring address on January 14, 1936.
On October 13, 1936, Bro. Melvin Maynard Johnson, Jr., was raised by his father, Most Wor. Melvin Maynard Johnson, Past Grand Master, who gave an inspiring charge to the newly raised brethren.
On January 12, 1937, a new lease of the Ledge quarters at 1 Harvard Street was negotiated for 3 years at #2,000.00 per year.
Rt. Wor. Alfred P. Waterman resigned as Secretary on January 12, 1937, after 7 years in office and on February 8, 1938, he was elected an honorary member. Rt. Wor. Francis D. Taylor presented him with the Joseph Warren Medal of Grand Lodge for distinguished service.
On February 14, 1939, a memorial service was held for Wor. C. A. Bowditch, Master, 1885-1886, Secretary for 33 years, elected Secretary emeritus, and the recipient of the Henry Price Medal.
On April 9, 1940, by special dispensation from the Grand Master, Eugene Pendelton Carver, Jr., was balloted upon and the Entered Apprentice Degree was conferred upon him on the same evening.
On June 10, 1941, the Lodge was paid a visit by Wor. Ralph S. Gray and the officers of Nehoiden Lodge who performed the Fellow Craft Degree. A collation of lobster followed.
Wor. Matthew A. McNeilly was elected Secretary of the Lodge on September 9, 1941.
On November 11, 1941, the evening was dedicated to Gene Davis for 50 years of Masonic service. Bro. William D. Paine acted as Toast Master. The SO-year Medal was presented by Rt. Wor.C. Weston Ringer, D. D. G. M.
On January 11, 1944, Rt. Wor. Alton L. Miller, newly appointed D. D. G. M., presented the 50-year membership certificate to Bro. William D. Paine; on May 9, 1944, he presented him with his 50-year Veteran's Medal.
On June 13, 1944, it was the first time that report of the nominating committee was presented in June rather than the usual meeting in September.
Past Masters' Night on May 8, 1945 was the first time in a number of years that all the stations were filled by Past Masters with four extra present.
On June 12, 1945, United Lodge with Wor. Victor Lewis in the East conferred a degree on their own candidate, Lieut. Thomas Ochiltree, who described his experiences as a Prisoner of War in Germany.
On September 11, 1945, the Master-Elect, Dell W. Turner, and officers of Beth-horon Lodge were installed by Most Wor. Samuel H. Wragg.
At a Special Communication on November 11, 1945, a Church Service was held at the First Presbyterian Church, and the message was given by Rev. Bro. William L. MacDuffie, Minister of the church.
The Seventy-fifth Anniversary was celebrated on November 15, 1945. Most Wor. Samuel H. Wragg, Grand Master of Masons in Massachusetts, was received and an historical address was given by Wor. Matthew McNeilly. Bro. Emery E. Allen was introduced as the oldest living Mason in Massachusetts. (1945 Mass. 394-400)
Rt. Wor. Alton L. Miller made his first Official Visitation on November 21, 1945 as D. D. G. M. He was attended to by a suite of 67.
On February 12, 1946, it was proposed by Wor. Bro. Boehner that #25.00 be taken from the income of the Lodge for the next Anniversary in 1970.
On March 12, 1946, action was taken on the Anniversary Fund as carried in the notice for the celebration of each quarter century of the Lodge.
On May 14, 1946, Most Wor. Samuel H. Wragg was voted to honorary membership in Beth-horon Lodge.
Rt. Wor. Alton L. Miller was officially received by the Master on January 9, 1951 as Deputy Grand Master, and at the following meeting the Deputy G. M. Medal was presented to him by Wor. Bro. Carver.
On November 9, 1951, a proposal was discussed to change the By-Laws to provide for the election of officers in June with installation in September. This was moved and recorded on November 13, 1951 and voted on December 11, 1951.
On March 23, 1953, at a Special Communication, Rev. Bro. Kenneth L. Garrison was raised by Most Wor. Thomas S. Roy with Rt. Wor. Alton L. Miller in the West at an Official Visitation.
An announcement was made on December 9, 1958 that the Lodge was requested to vacate its quarters by December 31, 1958. On June 9, 1959, it was announced that beginning in October the meetings would be held on the Second Monday of the month at 203 Chestnut Hill Avenue, Brighton, by dispensation of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge.
On October 12, 1959, the first meeting was held in the new quarters in Brighton.
Wor. Leon Allen passed away on February 4, 1960. Wor. Bro. Allen received his 33rd degree in the Fall of 1950, and according to our records is the only 33rd degree Mason of our Lodge.
Wor. George A. Eckian was elected Master of the 34th Lodge of Instruction on March 30, 1961.
It was announced on February 10, 1964 that Wor. Howard E. Perry was appointed Junior Grand Deacon to the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts.
May 11, 1964 was declared Albert M. Higgs Night. Most Worshipful A. Neill Osgood conveyed special honors to Bro. Albert M. Higgs for his twenty years of devoted service as Tyler of Beth-horon Lodge and his 60 years as a Mason.
On September 14, 1964, a Fraternal Visitation was paid to the Lodge by Most Wor. A. Neill Osgood on the occasion of the semi-public installation of officers by Wor. Howard E. Perry, J. G. D. of the Grand Lodge.
On January 8, 1968, the appointment of Wor. Howard E. Perry as District Deputy Grand Master of the Waltham Fifth Masonic District by Most Worshipful Thomas A. Booth was announced. Rt. Wor. Bro. Perry appointed Wor. Richard W. Nichols, D. D. Grand Marshal, and Wor. L. Milton Reynolds, D. D. Grand Secretary. The District Deputy made his first Fraternal Visitation on this date.
Bro. William E. Smith was honored on March 11, 1968 after concluding 24 years of service as Inside Sentinel due to his retirement to Pennsylvania. A scroll signed by all the Past Masters in the 24 years was presented to Bro. Smith by Rt. Wor. Howard E. Perry.
The final Official Visitation of Rt. Wor. Howard E. Perry, D. D. G. M., was made on November 10, 1969. A suite consisting of 12 distinguished Masons accompanied him.
On December 8, 1969, Most Worshipful Herbert H. Jaynes, Grand Master of Masons in Massachusetts, paid the Lodge a Fraternal Visitation to observe the work of the Firefighters Square Club. The degree team conferred the second and third sections of the Master Mason Degree upon the candidate. It was announced that Rt. Wor. Howard E. Perry was appointed to be Grand Representative of the Lodge of Minnesota near the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts.
One hundred years! A century of change. Thus we close the records on the first centennial of Beth-horon's Masonic progress in the Town of Brookline, an infinite speck in the vast expanse of time.
Freemasonry is irrevocably committed to progress. We are sure that in spite of all that has come to us, we have received light as yet but partially. There is no finality in the search for truth.
In a world that seems hurtling toward its own destruction, in a day when moral bankruptcy threatens our social institutions, in an hour when radical leaders proclaim that "God is dead," those of us who are vitally concerned with the future of mankind need a solid foundation that is absolute! Throughout all time and throughout all the Universe there is but one absolute, and no other is or will be needed. "In the beginning, God." There is the Absolute, on which all of life is eternally founded.
Mankind is one and indivisible, and it is important that we learn how to live together in peace and harmony. Therefore let us go forth animated by one desire, — to make the principles and ideals of Masonry live in our lives, and in the lives of our brethren. Let us resolve to love God and keep His commandments. Let us prove to the profane world that God is very much alive in our hearts, in the work of our hands, in the lives that we lead as Freemasons.
Moreover, let us consider this centennial year of Beth-horon Lodge not merely a celebration of the accomplishments of our first century of progress, but rather a dedication of our lives, our fortunes, and our sacred honor to an increased devotion to Him, to our country, and our Brethren as we face forward into the sunrise of our second century.
May the Grand Architect of the Universe provide us with the vitality and vision to let it be the pledge of all of us present and future, to emulate the efforts of our illustrious Brethren of the past and bring honor and glory to the next one hundred years of achievement by the members of Beth-horon Lodge.
We should communicate this to the world with something of the passion of the immortal George Bernard Shaw when he wrote the lines:
"Life is no brief candle for me. It is a sort of splendid torch which I have got hold of for a moment, and I want to make it burn as brightly as possible before handing it on to future generations."
125TH ANNIVERSARY HISTORY, NOVEMBER 1996
From Proceedings, Page 1996-223:
By Rt. Wor. Peter G. Richter.
Brethren, what does twenty-five years mean in the life of an organization? Does nothing of import happen during those years or is the importance of those happenings understood and commented upon only by those whose organization it is? Historically speaking, twenty-five years is only a short space of time; a man scarcely grows to adulthood during that brief moment of time. A man may only be finally ready to enter the Masonic Fraternity at the end of those twenty-five years. So, what can it mean to an organization like Beth-horon Lodge?
In the past twenty-five years, new young men have joined this lodge and become members of one of the world's greatest fraternities. Other men, members of this Lodge have received honors and accolades as befitting their accomplishments, and in some cases, their perceived status. And still others, men who were leaders as well as men who were workers, have left this mortal coil and passed into the Lodge in Heaven where the Supreme architect of the Universe presides.
Beth-horon Lodge, A.F.& A.M., was constituted on October 23, 1871 and instituted on November 15, 1871. It celebrated its one hundredth anniversary on November 13, 1971, with much ceremony over the period of a week. Its history for that period was most competently prepared and written by Right Worshipful Howard E. Perry, an accomplishment for which the Lodge and Right Worshipful Brother Perry can be most proud.
This November 12, 1996, we celebrate our one hundred and twenty-fifth anniversary, no mean accomplishment in these years of the failure of so many organizations and businesses. It says much to the stamina, fortitude and perseverance of the Brethren of this Lodge, that they have not only survived, but prospered.
In those twenty-five years, some twenty different men have led this Lodge from the Oriental chair. Several have assisted the Lodge by coming back to the East again to help the Lodge over a period when their expert help was sorely needed.
Those stalwart Masons were as follows: Right Worshipful Donald D. Lowell (1975) who reassumed the East again in 1986; Worshipful John W. W. Maxon (1979) who reassumed the East again in 1985; Worshipful Jo D. Williams (1983) who reassumed the East again in 1996. Worshipful Robert C. Roberge who stayed in the East from 1987 to 1988; Worshipful Charles R. Stone who remained in the East from 1989 to 1990; and, finally, Worshipful Jean H. A. Laprime who held the East from 1994 to 1995. Beth-horon Lodge is indeed indebted to these men for their sacrifices and efforts in behalf of the Lodge and Masonry.
There have been many others without whose on-going and continued support, this Lodge might have fallen, like so many others have. To name a few, I would like to list the following: Worshipful George P. Rassias, our Chaplain; for these many years,
Worshipful Kenneth L. Whitney, who had done so much and filled so many stations when asked; Worshipful Frank Bugley, who has so capably represented the lodge as its representative to the Masonic Service Bureau; Worshipful Robert A. Morrison, who has delivered those superb and most wonderful charges to our newly raised Masons; Worshipful Thomas R. R. Knox, who is always there when we need help. Worshipful Hobart B. Emerson, who has been our Electrician along with whatever else we have asked of him; and, of course, once again those previously mentioned Past Masters, who have truly exemplified the ideal that once one leaves the East, one's obligations really begin. They have shown all of us what it means to live up to that ideal!
Finally, we should not forget those other Brethren who have continually come to sit on the sidelines and witness our work; some good, some bad. Two who are always there, but rarely receive any recognition, are Brother David Dalzell and his compatriot Brother Robert A. Morrison.
Now, in those past twenty-five years, this Lodge has undergone two traumatic moves. The first took place in 1980, when we moved from our apartments in Brighton to The Harvard Church in Brookline. No sooner had we settled there, we were on the move, once again, this time to the Masonic Apartments in Newtonville, which by the way, are celebrating their one hundredth anniversary this year. This last move took place in 1982 and, we all hope, will be our last. During these trying times, the Lodge was in a state of flux from which it is only now beginning to recover.
On the brighter side of things, during the year that Worshipful John M. Inglis was Master, Beth-horon Lodge took part in an exchange with St. Marks Lodge of Derry, New Hampshire. On June 10, 1974, Past Masters from St. Marks Lodge came to Brighton to do a Master Masons Degree on their candidate. We responded by traveling to St. Marks on June 17, 1984 to do the same degree on our candidate, Brother Alan McPherson. The officers from Beth-horon Lodge who took part in the degree were: Worshipful John M. Inglis, Master; Brother Donald D. Lowell, Senior Warden; Brother Raymond G. Benson, Junior Warden; Worshipful James G. Argus, Treasurer; Worshipful Frank Bugley, Secretary; Worshipful Harold F. Lowell, Marshal; Brother Thomas Day, Senior Deacon; Brother Robert A. Morison, Junior Deacon; Brother John W.W. Maxon, Senior Steward; Brother John Badger, Junior Steward and Brother William Morrow, Associate Ritualist. You can see, Brethren, that we were able to field a pretty fine line of Officers in our heyday.
As an aside, I feel it worth noting that Worshipful John M. Inglis was installed Master on September 10, 1973, was admitted to the hospital for a triple heart by-pass operation which took place on October 11, 1973 and was present at the Waltham Fifth District's First Official Visitation in October 1973. Worshipful Masters must have terrific stamina!!!
Since that time, the Lodge has maintained its own and has raised a goodly number of Master Masons; some of whom have drifted away to other Lodges or pursuits. Some have entered the line and have gone on to assume the East.
In those twenty-five years, many of our Brethren have been honored by our Grand Lodge for achievement and effort in behalf of Masonry in Massachusetts. They are: Right Worshipful Howard E. Perry, who received the Joseph Warren Medal for Distinguished Service in 1984. In 1987, Worshipful Frank Bugley received the Joseph Warren Medal for Distinguished Service. Also, in 1992, Right Worshipful Howard E. Perry was recognized by Masons in the United States and honored by receiving his Thirty-third Degree, a singular honor to him and Beth-horon Lodge.
Two of our Past Masters have been honored by being made representatives to one of our Grand Masters. Right Worshipful Peter G. Richter was asked to be the District Deputy Grand Master of the Nantucket 31st Masonic District during the years of 1989 and 1990. Right Worshipful Donald D. Lowell was asked to lead the Waltham 5th Masonic District as its District Deputy Grand Master in 1993 and 1994. Right Worshipful Brother Lowell then appointed Wor. Robert C. Roberge as District Deputy Grand Marshal and Wor. Kenneth L. Whitney as District Deputy Grand Secretary.
As the result of his unselfish work in assisting with the recognition of The Prince Hall Grand Lodge, Right Worshipful Brother Lowell was honored by being made Grand Representative of The Prince Hall Grand Lodge, near The Grand Lodge of Massachusetts in 1995. For this honor (and its heavy responsibility) we congratulate and support you Right Worshipful Don.
All of these honors mean much to the Lodge and its Brethren. Yet, without the support of those very same Brethren, nothing of the sort would have been possible. How can we forget those who have assisted us at The Grand Master's Country Fair? Who have supported the many blood mobiles? Who have been ready and able to act as a candidate for a rehearsal? Who have helped put on the suppers and collations? Who have helped set up the Lodge for Degrees and other functions? These are the unsung heroes of Masonry. Without them, we are truly nothing. To all of you, Brethren, we thank you and honor you for your tireless efforts in behalf of our/your Lodge.
Well, honored Brethren and guests, the time for this history is drawing to a close. However, I do feel that I should caution you about the next twenty-five years. Masonry is at a turning point which, if we do not face head on with courage and honesty, may leave the Fraternity at loose ends, like a ship of state without a rudder. There are too may outside influences which are competing with the duties expected of Masons. It is too easy for us to stay home instead of going to Lodge. We have worked hard all day and we have a family to look after. How can Masonry and its ideals place food on our tables and money in the bank? We are too tired and there is a great show on TV tonight. Can the ritual compete with that?
To really compete with that, we must once again involve our younger and newly raised Masons in the activities of the Lodge. It can no longer be a meeting with ritual (some of which can be quite poor) and a business meeting. It must have some activity that excites its members and makes them feel that their families are welcome to attend. We must also entertain the idea of having at least one other event, each month, that will involve the Brethren and their families. We must give all of our new Master Masons something constructive to do, not simply putting the 'good ones with ritual' in line and forgetting the others. We must get to every Brother, every meeting and greet him, not let him sit there forgotten. Only when we finally thank our Brethren and their families as the pillars of support for out Lodges, can we hope to reach our next twenty-five year anniversary in good health and looking forward to a bright and rewarding future.
R. W. Peter G. Richter, Historian
- 1902 (Essay by Wor. Bro. Candage on Jeremy Gridley, as part of the description of Gridley House in Brookline (1902-305)
GRAND LODGE OFFICERS
- Robert P. Beach, Grand Marshal 1963-1965, Senior Grand Warden 1966, Grand Secretary 1969-1988
- Lewis M. Crane, DDGM, District 5 (Newton), 1895; Memorial
- Emery B. Gibbs, DDGM, District 5 (Waltham), 1913; Deputy Grand Master 1914
- George F. Homer, DDGM, District 4 (Cambridge), 1875; SN
- Donald D. Lowell, DDGM, District 5 (Waltham), 1993, 1994; N
- Alton L. Miller, DDGM, District 5 (Waltham), 1944, 1945; Deputy Grand Master 1951
- Howard E. Perry, DDGM, District 5 (Waltham), 1968, 1969; N
- Louis C. Southard, Deputy Grand Master 1905
- Alfred P. Waterman, DDGM, District 5 (Waltham), 1932, 1933; SN