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Grand Master, 1897-1899


1897 1898 1899




From Proceedings, Page 1915-89:

It is my sad duty officially to announce the decease of our Past Grand Master, M.W. Charles Carroll Hutchinson, of Lowell, who died in that city, April 29, 1915.

He endeared himself to us by his constant good nature: his cordial greeting, and his rising, seemingly without effort, to the demands of every occasion where he was called upon to act. He was a faithful servant of this Grand Lodge, a courteous and thoughtful Brother, and a Grand Master whose administration was marked with progress, ability, and success. It was under his Grand Mastership that this Temple was erected. I acted as an Honorary Pall Bearer at his funeral with M.W. Brothers Charles T. Gallagher, Edwin B. Holmes, R.W. Brother Arthur G. Pollard, and others. The funeral was attended by a large number of the Fraternity of Loweli and elsewhere. The following other officers and permanent members of the Grand Lodge were noted; viz.:

From Proceedings, Page 1915-114:

Charles Carroll Hutchinson, son of Samuel King Hutchinson and Susan Warren Hutchinson, was born in Andover, Massachusetts, June 9, 1832, and died in Lowell April 29, 1915, at the age of 82 years 10 months and 20 days. He was educated in the LoweII public schools and at Ireland Academy, West Springfield, now Holyoke.

His vocation since the days of youth was substantially as follows: Clerk in the Railroad Bank, Lowell, 1853-1858, Cashier of Bank at Brighton, 1858-1864, Clerk in Central National Bank, New York, 1864-1871, Treasurer of the Mechanics Savings Bank, Lowell, 1871, resigned as Treasurer July 22, 1973, and was elected Vice-President. He was the first Treasurer of the Brighton Savings Bank, 1861-1864. He was a communicant of St. Anne's Church in LoweII, Trustee of the Old Ladies' Home, 1901-1910, a member of the Common Council of Lowell, 1880, President of the Council in 1881, Commissioner of the Sinking Fund, 1885-1887, President of the Traders & Mechanics Insurance Company in 1901, and also at the time of his decease, and Director of the Lowell Gas Light Company 1902.

His Masonic Record is as follows:

Received the Entered Apprentice in Ancient York Lodge October 11, 1854, Fellow Craft, November 8, 1854, Master Mason December 6, 1854, Senior Deacon in Ancient York Lodge 1855-1856, Senior Warden 1857, Worshipful Master 1858. He was a Director in the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts 1892-1909, Grand Master of the Grand Lodge 1896-1899.

He received the Royal Arch Degree in Mt. Horeb R'oyal Arch Chapter December 3, 1855, and was elected Captain of the Host in 1856 and Grand Captain of the Host in 1856. He received the Super Excellent Degree in Ahasuerus Council of Lowell, March 16, 1856, and was Captain of the Guard, 1871-1874. He received the Order of the Temple in Pilgrim Commandery, Knights Templar, March 26, 1856. He was Generalissimo 1872-1873, Commander 1874, 1875, 1877, 1878, Grand Senior Warden 1879, Grand Captain-General 1880-1881, Deputy Grand Commander 1882-1883, Grand Commander 1884-1885.

He received the 14th Grade in Lowell Lodge of Perfection of the Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite September 9, 1858, was elected its Potent Master 18?3-1887, and received all the grades from the 14th to the 32nd inclusive in Lowell Council of Princes of Jerusalem, Mount Calvary Chapter of Rose Croix, and Massachusetts Consistory. He was Most Wise Master of Mount Calvary Chapter 1891-1895, enrolled an Honorary Member of the Supreme Council 33°, sitting at Portland, Me., August 19, 1875. He was crowned an Active Member of the Supreme Council 33°, sitting at Pittsburgh, Pa., September 19, 1896, elected the Deputy for the District of Massachusetts 1900-1909, resigned his active membership and elected. an Emeritus Member September 20, 1909.

He was an Honorary Member of Charles A. Welch Lodge, Eliot Lodge; Lafayette Lodge, Pentucket Lodge, Kilwinning Lodge, Saint Bernard Commandery, Boston; Burlington Commandery, Vermont; Merrimack Valley Lodge of Perfection, Haverhill; and Massachusetts Consistory.

He was a Life Member of Ancient York Lodge, Massachusetts Consistory, Mount Olivet Chapter of Rose Croix, Giles F. Yates Council, Princes of Jerusalem, and Boston Lodge of Perfection.

During his term as Grand Master of Masons in Massachusetts the important duty of rebuilding the Temple in Boston came under his direction, which obligation he faithfully and conscientiously discharged, so that the dedication of the new Temple will remain as one of the enduring monuments of his Masonic life.

Such is an outline of a Brother who was well known and most highly respected as a citizen of integrity and probity in the community in which he lived, an expert and conscientious adviser in his vocation, and a most accomplished, enthusiastic Mason. He leaves as his only survivor, one son, the Rev. Charles S. Hutchinson, Rector of St. Clement's Church, Philadelphia, Pa.

He was by temperament dignified, somewhat reticent and demure, and seemingly at times unsusceptible, but to those who were honored by an intimate acquaintance he gave undisputed evidence of a warm-hearted, manly friendship, and a disposition to render happiness to all who sought his counsel and aid.

In Masonic circles he will be greatly missed. Some of us who have been associated with him for many years in the conduct of business, in the various departments of our Masonic professions, and in the delicate task of conferring degrees, will never forget his attractive personality, his deep musical voice in the calm enunciation of the truths of the lessons of the ritual, and the dignified, impressive manner which fascinated both the candidate and the habitual Iistener. He was courageous to the last in his struggle with the insidious disease which laid him low. He was laid at rest in accordance with the services of the church to which he belonged. His memory is an inspiration and his fidelity to the Craft affords an example worthy of imitation.

Respectfully submitted,
Edwin B. Holmes
Solon W. Stevens
Arthur G. Pollard


From New England Craftsman, Vol. X, No. 8, May 1915, Page 275:

Death of Charles C. Hutchinson

Charles C. Hutchinson, Past Grand Master of Masons in Massachusetts, died at his home, Lowell, Mass., April 29th. He was one of the well known Masons of Massachusetts having been prominent in each branch of Masonic Order. He was born at Andover, Mass., June 9, 1832. He was educated in the Lowell Schools and Ireland Academy, Holyoke. His business has been mostly in connection with banks. Beginning in the Railroad Bank, Lowell, in 1853, where he remained five years. He was cashier of a bank in Brighton, from 1858-1864. Clerk in Central Bank, New York, from 1864-1871. Treasurer in the Mechanics Savings Bank in Lowell, 1871, resigned as Treasurer in 1913, and was elected Vice-President. He also occupied other bank positions. He was a communicant of Saint Anne's Church, Lowell, Trustee of the Old Ladies' Home, Member of the Town Council of which he was President in 1881. He was also President of the Traders' and Merchants' Insurance Co. in 1901, and Director of the Lowell Gas Light Co., 1902.

He received his Masonic degrees in Ancient York Lodge in 1854. He was Master of this body in 1858, and Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts, 1896-1899. He was a member of Chapter, Council and Commandery and was Grand Commander of the Grand Commandery of Massachusetts and Rhode Island in 1885. He has been very prominent in the Scottish Rite and was crowned an active member of the Supreme Council in 1896. He was deputy for the District of Massachusetts, 1900-1909. He resigned his active membership and was elected an Emeritus member September 20, 1909. He was also an Honorary Member of many other Societies.

Because of ill health Bro. Hutchinson retired from active work move than one year ago.

He was a popular man, of genial disposition and was a charming companion. He had a host of friends by whom he will be greatly missed, especially by those who lived near him in his Lowell home.


From Proceedings of the Massachusetts Council of Deliberation AASR NMJ, 1915, Page 25:

The hand of the destroying angel spared our emeritus brother Charles Carroll Hutchinson until April 29th of this year, some years longer than many thought he would survive. A Mason for more than sixty years, for forty years a thirty-third degree Mason, thirteen years an active and for six years an emeritus member of the Supreme Council, his Masonic service and work was indeed a full one. He occupied responsible positions in monetary institutions during his life, and was the executive head of the Mechanics Savings Bank of Lowell for more than forty years, besides being at the head of or active in other industrial and public service corporations till his disability of a few years ago; in his business center he had been an influential force in the banking and industrial world. He brought to Masonry all the talents that came from such a business life, and his efficient service in the building of our new Masonic Temple in Boston during the years that he was Grand Master is one to be remembered as a debt due him from the fraternity. His funeral services were from the old St. Anne’s of the Episcopal church which he loved so well, and into the service of which his only surviving son entered as a rector. At the church were Ill. Bros. D. W. Lawrence, Geo. W. Currier, A. G. Pollard, Chas. T. Gallagher, Geo. H. Rhodes, Melvin M. Johnson, S. W. Stevens, E. B. Holmes, H. G. Pollard, F. K. Stearns, A. E. Livingstone, all of the thirty-third degree. Besides these members of our Supreme Council from Massachusetts and adjoining States every Masonic body with which he was connected was represented by a substantial delegation. Brother Hutchinson was a generous-hearted man; he could not resist the appeal of any one in distress who sought his counsel or financial aid. Though naturally retiring hi^ personality had a charm of manner and a dignity of presence that attracted to him many friends. Extended eulogiums will find a permanent place on our records and in our published proceedings for all our brethren who have gone before; references are made here as expressions of our heart feelings for those we have known by personal association, who have endeared themselves to us, and added to the strength and stability of our institution.

From Proceedings of the Massachusetts Council of Deliberation AASR NMJ, 1915, Page 47:

After a period of suffering, beginning with a severe attack of heart disease in November, 1908, and continuing for six and a half long years, Past Commander-in-Chief of Massachusetts Council of Deliberation, Charles Carroll Hutchinson found rest from earth’s labors, Thursday, the 29th of April, 1915, aged eighty-two years, ten months, and twenty days. The approaching end became apparent on the Friday preceding, when his illness assumed a more acute form, and from that day vitality steadily declined, until he calmly passed into the spirit land and found that which he had ever sought, “More light.”The subject of this memorial, the only son of Samuel Knox and Susan (Warren) Hutchinson, was born in Andover, Mass., June 9, 1832. Although by reason of his vocation he had lived in New York City, Brighton, and Holyoke since 1870, he had resided in Lowell, the home of his boyhood. November 30th of that year he was elected treasurer of the Mechanics Savings Bank, which position he held for more than forty years. At the time of his death he was president of the Traders & Mechanics Insurance Co., vice-president of the Mechanics Savings Bank, and a director of the Lowell Gas Light Co.

Brother Hutchinson’s Masonic record is a long and honorable one. While impossible to measure in words its value and importance to the Society and to the world, it is within the bounds of truth to state that during the sixty years of his service fully one half of them were devoted to the welfare and advancement of the Order. In 18.54, at the age of twenty-two years, he was made a Master Mason in Ancient York Lodge of Lowell, being raised to that sublime degree on the evening of December 6th. Without suggestion, he doubtless was influenced in this desire to unite with the fraternity by his father, who had entered Pentucket Lodge nearly thirty years before. Brother Hutchinson was elected Master of his Lodge October 28, 1857, at the age of twenty-five years, and on December 10, 1867, was elected an Honorary Member. Most fitting was it that his last Masonic work was performed in his own Lodge, when by invitation of the Worshipful Master the Past Masters of Ancient York Lodge exemplified the ritual of the second degree, in Pollard Hall, Lowell, Thursday evening, June 12, 1913. Brother Hutchinson, then just past his eighty-first birthday, assumed the Master’s part. It is unnecessary to state that his work was rendered with the same precision and accuracy that characterized all his earlier efforts.

February 12, 1897, he was made an Honorary Member of Kilwinning Lodge of Lowell, and later was accorded the same honor by Pentucket Lodge of Lowell, Charles A. Welch Lodge of Maynard, Eliot Lodge and Lafayette Lodge of Boston. His active connection with the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts dates from December 12, 1890, when he was elected a director, and on December 9, 1896, was unanimously chosen Grand Master, serving the usual term of three years.

Between the years 1858 and 1860 he received the Scottish Rite degrees at Lowell, later serving as Master of Lowell Lodge of Perfection and Mt. Calvary Chapter of Rose Croix, the former for twelve years and the latter for seven years. In the Grand bodies of this Rite his record is as follows: August 19, 1875, he received the thirty-third degree at Portland, Maine, and was made an Honorary Member of the Supreme Council; September 16, 1896, he was crowned an Active Member at Pittsburg, Pa.; September 19, 1900, he was elected Deputy of the Supreme Council for Massachusetts and Commander-in-Chief of Massachusetts Council of Deliberation. September 2, 1909, owing to illness, he resigned his active membership in the Supreme Council, being elected “Member Emeritus.” He was an Honorary Member of the following Scottish Rite bodies: Massachusetts Consistory, A.A.S.R., Merrimack Valley Lodge of Perfection of Haverhill, Mt. Olivet Chapter of Rose Croix, Giles F. Yates Council, and Boston Lafayette Lodge of Perfection.

Brother Hutchinson’s Templar affiliations began with his reception into Pilgrim Commandery, No. 9, when on the 15th of February, 1856, he received the Order of the Red Cross, the Order of the Temple, and the Order of Malta, March 26th, and elected a member September 17t.h. Between October 15th of that year and October 20. 1875, he served as Recorder, Generalissimo, and Commander of his Commandery. May 18, 1887, he was elected an Honorary Member of Burlington Commandery of Burlington, Vt. December 20, 1899, Pilgrim Commandery of Lowell conferred the same honor, and February 7, 1903, St. Bernard Commandery of Boston accorded him a like distinction. In the Grand Commandery Rt. Em. Sir Knight Hutchinson held the following offices: Grand Senior Warden, 1879; Grand Captain-General, 1880 and 1881; Deputy Grand Commander, 1882 and 1883, and Grand Commander in 1884.

While not possessing the martial instinct in marked degree Brother Hutchinson exhibited those characteristics of courtesy, urbanity, and probity which mark the true Freemason. The elements of order, method, and system were a heritage which he applied in all that he undertook. His resonant and well-modulated voice in connection with his strong personality gave to our noble ceremonial an atmosphere and a meaning that was often new, while always impressive and inspiring. Living to the ripe age of more than fourscore years his mentality remained clear and unimpaired to the end. During the last days thoughts of his beloved Order often found expression in repeating portions of our beautiful ritual. With a faith that never wavered he trod the pathway of life unfalteringly. With unfailing tenderness he took leave of earth. Who shall say that his earnest soul, passing from the imprisonment of the body, awoke not to those things which “eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man?”

Thou dost not sleep, but watchest e’er
Beyond earth’s darkling plain,
Where myriad cohorts stand and wait
The unveiling of God’s name.

The day draws near; the shadows flee —
Earth’s sorrows cannot stay;
Life’s weary steps and vigils sore
Shall speed thee on thy way.

Fear not to climb the Eternal Mount —
Its circling steeps grow less;
Those jeweled heights amid the stars
Thy Master’s gifts confess.

Stand forth, true Knight. The Master calls —
The Dawn is come — no shadow falls;
The radiant east, the south, the west,
Give greeting from that Host
Where Cherubim and Seraphim
Await the pilgrim’s quest!

I11. Arthur G. Pollard, 33°
111. Solon W. Stevens, 33°
I11. Frank K. Stearns, 33°.



From Proceedings, Page 1897-3:

W. MASTER: I thank you for your cordial salutation, and would assure you and the Brethren of St. Paul Lodge that it gives me great pleasure to bring to you the fraternal greetings and congratulations of the Grand Lodge upon this the Centennial Anniversary of your Lodge.

It is most gratifying to us all to know that the welfare and interest of our Institution have been so well supported and its principles so long and so boldly defended by your Lodge. It is evident that the zeal and fidelity of its founders still live among you. Although a hundred years have passed since, the fathers established here an institution which they believed would improve the condition of the people of this community and, awaken in them higher aspirations and nobler impulses, you have cause for congratulation that to-day you are permitted to enjoy the fruits of their labors.

I have often thought that if there be any place more than another where the great principles and teachings of our ancient brotherhood can be best appreciated and developed, it is in the rural portion of our Commonwealth where every man can be a friend and every neighbor a brother: where the ties of family and kinship are more closely woven and every one is his brother's keeper: where the rippling brook, the fertile fields and indeed all nature speak of peace and love, and turn one's thoughts to things that make for good.

The facts concerning the history of St. Paul Lodge, gathered from the Records of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge, are few, but interesting.

The Charter bears the date of Jan. 26, 1797, and gives the Lodge precedence. from the same date. The next reference to St. Paul Lodge, in the Grand Lodge Records, occurs under the date of June 12, 1797, when it was voted: That the Grand Lodge will attend for the installation of St. Paul Lodge, at Groton, the 2d of August next.

The Columbian Centinel, of which R. W. Benjamin Russell, Past Grand Master, was editor and proprietor, supplements the Grand Lodge Records. That paper of Aug. 12, 1797, contains the following:

"On Wednesday last {Aug. 9th} St. Paul Lodge was consecrated and its officers installed in ample form, at Groton, by the R .W. Samuel Dunn, Esq., D. G. M., assisted by the officers of the Grand Lodge. The ceremonies were performed in the Meeting-House, before a large assembly; of which the ladies formed a brilliant and beautiful part. The Rev. Br. Harris delivered a pertinent and pointed discourse on the occasion, and an ingenious Oration was pronounced by R. W. Br. Thomas, acting D. G. M. After the business was finished, the Lodge, which had proceeded in order from Richardson's tavern to the Meeting-house, repaired in like order, to an arbour, where they partook of a liberal entertainment, and closed the day with festive hilarity, social greeting and deed's of benevolence. The clergy of "the vicinity were guests and appeared gratified."

The sermon on that occasion was printed at the request of the Grand Lodge. A. copy is in the Grand Lodge Library.

Dr. Harris selected as his text, Exodus xvi., 15, and his subject was "Ignorance and prejudice shown to be the only enemies to Freemasonry: then objections considered and answered: and the true description of the Society given."

The Grand Lodge Records show that St. Paul Lodge was represented in Grand Lodge with commendable regularity. Excepting from 1832 to 1840—when the doors of so many Lodges were closed — there has been scarcely a year of the century in which some representative of St. Paul Lodge has not been present in Grand Lodge.

Oliver Prescott, of Groton, is the earliest-named representative. Then in December, 1802, came W. Timothy Bigelow, at which Communication he was elected Junior Grand Warden. He paid all Lodge dues owing to the Grand Lodge, amounting to $24.50.

Other representatives of St. Paul Lodge in Grand Lodge were: in 1803, Bro. Wallis Little; 1806-7, R. W. Bro. James Brazier, Proxy; 1807, Bro. Oliver Prescott; 1808-9, David Child, Proxy; 1814-19, Bro. William F. Brazier, of Boston, Proxy; 1820, Oliver Shedd, of Roxbury, Proxy; 1823, David Child, of Groton, Proxy; 1846, Daniel Shattuck, who became Master of the Lodge; and lastly our lamented Brother, Hon. E. Dana Bancroft, regularly represented St. Paul Lodge; in Grand Lodge for nearly twenty-four years next preceding his decease.

The Grand Lodge Records also inform us that:

"A Special Meeting of the Grand Lodge was held in the town of Groton, county of Middlesex, for the purpose of consecrating a new Hall, erected by St. Paul Lodge, on the 18th of September, Anno Lucis 5804. The Lodge was opened in due form and organized in the following manner:

  • R. W. TIMOTHY BIGELOW, Grand Master, pro tem.
  • R. W. TIMOTHY WHITING, D. G. M., pro tem.
  • R. W. BENJAMIN RUSSELL, S. G. W., pro tem.
  • R. W. HENRY FOWLE, J. G. W., pro tem.
  • R. W. JONATHAN GAGE, G. T., pro tem.
  • R. W. JOHN B. HAMMATT, G. Sec., pro tem.
  • R. W. EDMUND BOWMAN, G. Mar., pro tem.
  • Rev. Bro. BEDE, G. C., pro tem.
  • Bros. WHITE and HOWARD, G. Deacons, pro tem.
  • W. EATON and BILLINGS, G. Stewards, pro tem.
  • W. HORSEMAN, G. S. B., pro tem.

" W. BROWN and ABBOTT, Pursuivants, pro tem.

  • Bro. JOHN KNOWLES, Grand Tyler, pro tem.

"The Grand Lodge thus arranged, accompanied with St. Paul Lodge, proceeded to the. new Hall, where an eulogium was delivered by the. R. W. Bro. Prescott, on the principles of Masonry.. The Hall was consecrated in- due form. An Oration was delivered: by Brother Peabody, and the Grand Lodge was closed in due form.

"Attest: JOHN B. HAMMATT, Grand Secretary."

June 14, 1820, the Grand Master, in speaking of the condition of the various Lodges in the State, said concerning St. Paul Lodge, of Groton: It "continues to maintain that truly Masonic character for which it has been long eminently distinguished."

June 25, 1821, the Festival of St. John the Baptist was celebrated in Groton under the auspices of St. Paul Lodge. Trinity, Social and Aurora Lodges and St. John's Royal Arch Chapter joined in the celebration. An oration — which was printed — was delivered by Comp. James Carter, and a banquet with post-prandial exercises closed the observance of the day.

At the Quarterly Communication of the Grand Lodge held March 8, 1871, W. Bro. E Dana Bancroft offered the following motion, which was adopted:

Voted, That St. Paul Lodge, of Groton, be authorized to meet in the town of Ayer, in Caleb Butler Lodge-room, unless sooner provided with accommodations in Groton, till January, 1872.

At the Communication of the Grand Lodge held March 13, 1872, a petition, signed by nineteen members of St. Paul Lodge, approved by the District Deputy Grand Master and indorsed by Caleb Butler Lodge, was presented by Brother Bancroft asking for the removal of St. Paul Lodge from Groton to Ayer. The prayer of said petition was granted and the Lodge was accordingly removed to Ayer.

In a cursory review of the history of St. Paul Lodge, one is impressed with the character and prominence of many of its members, especially of its Worshipful Masters.

Oliver Prescott, Jr., — its first Senior Warden, a graduate of Harvard and a physician of extensive practice — was Surgeon in General Lincoln's army and accompanied the expedition which was raised to suppress Shay's rebellion in 1787. His father was an officer in the Revolutionary Army. Oliver Prescott, Jr., was Junior Grand Warden in 1810.

His successor as Master was his brother-in-law, Hon. Timothy Bigelow, who was a Harvard graduate and a distinguished lawyer. He was a member of both branches of the General Court and of the Executive Council.

James Prescott, a cousin of Oliver Prescott, Jr., a graduate of Harvard, began the practice of law. but upon the death of his uncle Oliver, the judge of probate, he was appointed to that office and was afterward chief justice of the Court of Common Pleas.

Caleb Butler was present in Grand Lodge Jan. 1, 1811; was District Deputy Grand Master from 1814 to 1817 inclusive; afterwards Senior Grand Warden, Deputy Grand Master, and Grand Master.

John Abbot succeeded Wor. Brother Butler as Master of St. Paul Lodge. Brother Abbot was District Deputy Grand Master in 1811 and 1812; Junior Grand Warden in 1813; Senior Grand Warden in 1814; Deputy Grand Master in 1821, 1822 and 1823; and Grand Master in. 1824, 1825, 1826 and 1834.

Augustus Peabody, a graduate of Dartmouth College, was District Deputy Grand Master in 1813 and 1814, Senior Grand Warden in 1817, and Grnnd Master in 1843, 1844, and 1845.

Besides these there have been others — not so prominent in Masonic matters, but no less efficient in their several Masonic offices: Col. Wm. Butterick, Capt. Daniel Shattuck, Hon. E. Dana Bancroft and others.

It would be interesting could we discover the circumstances under which this Lodge received its name. We can surmise that the Brethren of Groton, after a full consideration of appropriate names for the Lodge, selected the name St. Paul, not simply for its euphony, or the place of the Apostle in sacred history, but rather on account of the characteristics of the man. He was a zealous, tireless, enthusiastic promoter of any cause in which he was engaged. Converted to Christianity, his loyalty, zeal and fearlessness shone with a lustre which 1,900 years have not dimmed. He overshadows and overreaches every other worker in the early church. Fidelity to the truth was his motto, and no opposition however strong, nor punishment however severe forced him to waver in his duty.

The selection of his name implies, on the part of the founders of this Lodge, a recognition of the value of fidelity, zeal and courage in the discharge of duties which devolve upon us.

Were not these largely the characteristics which gave so much prominence and influence to the citizens of Groton? They were certainly characteristics of those who founded and nurtured St. Paul Lodge and guided it wisely and well through the anti-Masonic storm of sixty years ago.

St. Paul Lodge never surrendered its Charter; its altar light was never extinguished; its loyalty to the Grand Lodge was never weak nor uncertain. It has pressed on through the century, sometimes possibly with feeble and flagging step, but it has been faithful to our Order, zealous in retaining its chartered rights, and courageous in meeting difficulties and the opposition of misguided men.

Brethren, remember the character of the Gentile apostle; remember the fidelity, zeal and courage of the fathers; recall the century's history replete with the great achievements of our Order, and let these recollections inspire you to begin the new century by imitating the example of the fathers; so that one hundred years hence the walls of St. Paul Lodge-room will resound with words in praise of your achievements, even as to-day they echo and re-echo your grateful thanks for the fidelity, zeal and courage of its founders.


From Proceedings, Page 1897-24:

MY BROTHERS: By the offices' and ceremonials of our Order this Hall has been dedicated, according to ancient usage, to Freemasonry, to Virtue and to Universal Benevolence. Henceforth it becomes to you a most interesting place. To it your hearts will turn with pride and delight; to it you will come, and away from the distracting cares and employments of life, apart from all partisan, sectarian or extraneous influences, meet in happy fraternal communion.

Here new duties and obligations will be assumed, and new associations and fraternal ties be formed, which time can neither weaken nor break. Here the best teachings of our ancient Institution will find their proper expression. Here men will be induced to review their daily walk and conversation, new and greater opportunities will be opened to them, and they will be encouraged to meet all the duties of life with fidelity and zeal.

The selection and preparation of these apartments testify to your attachment to our brotherhood and to. your purpose to make it a means of great good in this community, a conservator of those high moral principles which promote the welfare and happiness of all who come within their influence. They are also a witness to your material prosperity and commend you as an example to your Brethren.

That this happy condition may long continue, we most sincerely hope and desire; but to make it secure will require^ as you all know, fidelity and zealous endeavor on the part of every member.

No institution or society can live of itself, — there must be a vital force within it, to direct and maintain it. In our Institution this force or power is the loving spirit, the harmonious, united effort and the willing hand of those who have its welfare and interest truly and deeply at heart. And this leads me to suggest that you should be particularly careful whom you admit to fellowship in this great brotherhood, closing your doors against all whom you may deem unworthy, remembering always that great numbers are not absolutely necessary to great achievement, and that the best and most permanent results to our Institution have come from Brethren possessing sterling qualities of character, such, as I see about me here to-day; and hence it is, as we believe, that this Lodge has grown, prospered and attained its present enviable position.

But, my Brothers, because of your present happy condition do not become indifferent or careless, nor live upon the reputation which the labors of others have acquired for you, however brilliant it may be. Strive to make for yourselves a name. and record of honor, justice, truth and zeal in promoting whatever may be for our common welfare. Be faithful in directing and aiding every sincere seeker after light, before whom lie great possibilities for good, and whom you should not leave at the very entrance to your Lodge-room, nor forsake at any "time during his novitiate; but by examples of decorum, of fidelity to obligation and loyalty to the Order, awaken within him a broader, deeper realization of the duties which rest upon him as a man, and of what it means to be a FREEMASON.

I think a conformity to these few suggestions will promote the interest and welfare of your Lodge and secure to you the commendations of the entire Fraternity.

I bring to you the sincere congratulations of the Grand Lodge upon this happy occasion, and would express the hope that here Freemasonry may find true and loyal support, Virtue be respected and revered, Universal Benevolence be truly and wisely practised, and that this Lodge may continue to stand a monument to the fidelity, zeal and intelligence of the Freemasons of Gardner. God speed you on your way!


From Proceedings, Page 1897-67:

YOUR HONOR, LADIES, BRETHREN AND MY YOUNG FRIENDS: With the impressive ceremonies and solemn benediction of our ancient Fraternity, this Corner-stone has now been placed.

Upon it is to be erected an edifice within which the youth of this fair city are to be instructed in subjects which will qualify them to meet with intelligence, probity and zeal the duties of whatever station in life they may be called to fill. Their presence gives additional interest and inspiration to this occasion. What a beautiful spectacle they present! It stirs our hearts and awakens a thousand remembrances of events and incidents which marked our young days, to stand in their presence and hear their cheerful voices. It also leads us to contemplate most seriously the grave responsibility which rests upon this generation. The future welfare of our country will soon be in the keeping and control of the youth of the present; it therefore remains to us to do whatever we can to make it secure, by impressing upon the minds of the children of to-day the importance of properly fitting themselves for the great duties they are to assume, and providing them with every means and opportunity to do so.

It is most appropriate that our honorable Fraternity should be invited to perform this ceremony, for, in its operative character, it has been from time immemorial a teacher and promoter of the arts and sciences, and has left its impress upon every age of the world's history, in those great works which to-day, notwithstanding so many years have passed since their construction, are still a study, and command the attention and admiration of all who come within their shadow. In its speculative character also it is one of the great conservators of education, and by its symbols morally demonstrates the force and power of discipline of the mind, and draws it forth to range the large field of matter and space, to display the summit of human knowledge — our duty to God and to man.

We do not mean by this' that Masonry is religion; that it is religious and the handmaid of religion, none can deny. It is true that it is not the exponent of any particular creed or dogma, but it requires that all who enter its portals should express a belief in God, leaving it to every one to worship God in accordance with the dictates of his conscience.

Nor is it in any sense partisan. It is not bound to any school or system of politics; but strives to break down the barriers which partisan or sectarian influences erect between men, and teaches in its fullest, broadest sense the spirit of toleration.

Hence it is that it gives its sanction and approval to the public school system of our Commonwealth, whose benefits and privileges the youth of all nationalities and creeds can equally enjoy.

Hence it is also that we are pleased to bring to you the service and duty of the Grand Lodge upon this happy occasion, and offer you its aid in disseminating those great principles which affect the law-making and administrative agencies of your city — education, good morals, true and upright living — without which no community can be prosperous, no people truly happy, nor truth, honor and justice be respected and revered.

The time appointed for this service could not have been more appropriate, when all thoughts turned to memories most dear, to a land blessed with peace, and a people united in the bonds of friendship. Our great Fraternity mourns the loss of many noble Brothers fallen in the great struggle for the preservation of our national union; and in testimony of its true loyalty to the laws of our country, joins with loud acclaim in hailing its honored flag which floats so proudly over us, the' ensign of a nation's power and glory. And as it shall float from the highest pinnacle of the building to be erected here, may the youth who shall sit beneath its folds be taught to regard it not as a symbol of war; let it not speak to them of the marshalling of armed force, of ruthless carnage, but of order under constituted authority, of an heritage in a country blessed above all countries, of peace and love and that harmony in thought and deed which is the very cement and support of all government.

Our work is done. It remains for you, my friends, to carry to completion the object and purpose of. these rites, which are not merely the erection and occupying of this building; these would represent only the operative character of our Institution; but rather recognize its speculative character by requiring that from this place shall emanate the influences and principles which control the intellectual and moral life of this community; that your youth lie taught to reverence God, love the truth, be obedient to the laws under whose protection they live, and never lose sight of the allegiance due to their country.


From Proceedings, Page 1897-110:

W. MASTER: It is a pleasant privilege to receive your cordial welcome on this interesting occasion, and to join with you in the festivities of the hour. We tender you our heartiest congratulations, and bring to you the fraternal regards and good-will of the whole Fraternity.

It is an occasion of which you have reason to be proud; an event which all the Masons of. our jurisdiction delight to recognize as proving, in some degree, the perpetuity of our Institution, and the value of the principles which are the basis of its usefulness and power.

Contrasting the condition of our Fraternity at the time this Lodge was founded, with its present condition, we can hardly realize the great strides it has made in material prosperity and growth.

It is an Institution which grows with the growth and strengthens with the progress of the times, so that to-day. it is in full sympathy with every true and earnest effort which is made to improve the condition of mankind. The broad spirit of toleration which characterizes it enables it to command respect, and assert its power at all times and in all places. In this respect, it stands to-day without a rival. It can, and many times does, exert an influence over minds which even religion cannot effect; and although we regard it as the handmaid of religion, it exists where Christianity has not gone, and exerts its beneficent influence in the most distant portions of the earth, and is an effective means for promoting progress and civilization.

It was a great factor in the management of civil affairs about the time this Lodge was formed. Very many of its most prominent and ardent supporters had been officers in the American Army during the Revolution, and received the degrees in Army Lodges. The war being over, they made the Lodge the rendezvous where old and dear friendships were renewed and "enjoyed. What an inheritance of precious memories this Lodge must be to you, my Brothers! What a priceless legacy has come to you, " with not a marble fractured, not a pillar fallen!"

The lesson of to-day, it seems to me, is fidelity to duty and obligation; for through these only it is that you are permitted to enter into and enjoy these festivities which constitute the local crowning Masonic event of the century.

As history, teaching by example, is the surest and safest guide, holding out in one direction cheering signals of safety, and in another, beacons of warning, I would ask you to review the history of your Lodge, and from it and the incidents of this day, gather strength and inspiration for the future; keep the fires of charity and brotherly love burning brightly upon your altar; preserve the purity and vigor of Masonry; be true and faithful in every duty, so that your Lodge may stand here as a monument to your fidelity and loyalty to the great principles of our venerable Institution.


From Proceedings, Page 1897-118:

W. MASTER AND BRETHREN: I am pleased to receive the welcome which. you have so cordially extended to me as the representative of the Grand Lodge, and in recognition of your loyalty to it and to the cause of Masonry, would express my full appreciation of the same, and offer to you and this Lodge my personal congratulations and those of the whole Fraternity.

It is no little honor to have stood in a community for one hundred years and receive the encomiums of your Brethren as you are doing to-day. And, my Brothers, these expressions of good-will are emphasized by the fact that you merit them.

Could we trace the unwritten history of this Lodge, we should find, undoubtedly, that it has made its impress upon this community by the comity and deeds of charity of the men who have been its best and truest exponents; in fact, that the great underlying principles of our Fraternity have controlled the friendly and neighborly intercourse and communion between man and man, and thus have shown to this community that they are a power for good.

If our Institution fails to be of benefit to a community, it is not the fault of the Institution nor of its precepts, but because of the indifference and laxity of those to whom it is given to illustrate them and make them effective.

This occasion is evidence that the Brethren of this Lodge have been zealous and indefatigable in preserving and transmitting the valuable tenets of our profession, exemplifying its teachings, and therefore have been true and faithful in all the relations of life. Were it otherwise, there could have been no occasion for this anniversary. The past at least is secure to you, and you have only to be constant in your duty in order to insure a continuance of the prosperity which has hitherto attended you. If you are ever doubtful of the future of this Lodge, if clouds arise to darken your pathway, and you despair of realizing your hopes for its success and prosperity, recur to the incidents of this hour, look upon this venerable document, your Charter, gather new inspiration and greater courage, and press on with quickened zeal and earnest effort to emulate the example of the founders of this Lodge and their successors who have made it possible for us to celebrate this day.

Let us, then, take the Institution as we have received it, wisely enlarge its scope and functions, improve its aims, broaden its organization and energies, expand and heighten its charities, preserve and secure its rituals and forms, and thus transmit it to our successors purer and better than we found it. If each generation of Masons shall accomplish a work like this, all care and anxiety as to the future life of the Institution may be thrown aside, for it will surely live as long as the affections, the hopes, the faith, and the charity of man shall live, to demand, receive, and spread its beneficence.


From Proceedings, Page 1897-149:

W. MASTER, BRETHREN AND FRIENDS: It is a great pleasure as well as privilege to receive the welcome you have so cordially tendered, to express the sentiments of gratification we all feel on this happy occasion, and to offer you our warmest congratulations.

We can realize that this day means very much to you and to this historic town. To you because it marks the hundredth milestone in your history, replete with blessed memories and the noble achievements of the. founders of your Lodge; into the results of whose labors and zeal in promoting the interests of our Fraternity you can so proudly and gratefully enter. And to this town because of the benefits it has received from the acts of those men in shaping and directing its government and maintaining its high reputation for valor, patriotism, honor and loyalty. The part this town took in the great struggle for our national independence is known and acknowledged by all our citizens, and is on permanent record. It is not strange, then, with the noble examples of fidelity to duty and obligation before you, that we should find in the history of your Lodge instances of determined efforts to defend and preserve at all times and under all circumstances, however adverse they might be, the rights and honor of our Institution.

It is not strange that amid the most violent attacks upon it, and in the face of social and political ostracism, your members should have been on the side of right and justice, and unanimously joining with their Brethren of the Commonwealth in demanding and wresting all their civil rights from the misguided, vindictive and malignant faction who for a short time exerted their baneful influence over a large portion of our country. Nor is it at all remarkable that on the twenty-second of February, 1838, the anniversary of the birth of the father of his country, and on the spot which heard the shot which echoed round the world, the Lodge should unanimously vote not to surrender its Charter, for your history leads us to characterize the members of this Lodge at that time as the true descendants of the patriots of 1775, who never surrendered anything. The influence of environment upon the character and thought in this connection would be a fitting theme for consideration, did time permit it. We may reasonably believe that the spirit of loyalty and devotion to duty which distinguished the men of 1775 inspired the men of 1797 who founded this Lodge, the Brethren of 1838, and has descended to their successors of to-day.

It is unnecessary for me to review particularly the history of your Lodge, or the lives of those most prominently connected with it; they are known to all. But I may ask you to study them carefully, seize upon and follow whatever was good in them, emulate their examples and strive to make for yourselves and this Lodge a reputation which shall reflect honor upon you and our great Fraternity, so that if the question is asked, What of Corinthian Lodge ? your answer may be, There she stands, behold her and judge for yourself.


From Proceedings, Page 1897-156:

BRETHREN: The adding of another star to the banner of our Order by constituting this new Lodge, and enrolling its name on our list of Lodges, furnishes additional evidence of the material prosperity of our Institution. And when this service is emphasized by the zeal, ability and fidelity of the Brethren for whose benefit it is held, it should commaud not only the duty of the Grand Lodge, but the cordial approval and sincere congratulations of the whole Fraternity.

I can realize that to you, Brethren of Unity Lodge, this is an occasion of the greatest import. It marks a period in the history of our Institution which, will be of the deepest interest to you. Around it, as years roll on, will cluster and. cling your fondest memories. You cannot but bring to this occasion mingled feelings of pride, gratitude and joy: of pride, because you have so acquitted yourselves as to win the approbation of your Brethren; of gratitude, because you have attained the object of your ambition; of joy, because, you are now made an important factor in promoting and conserving the great principles of our Fraternity.

These feelings are most natural on an occasion like this, and are permissible. But, my Brothers, there should accompany them an appreciation of the responsibilities you are assuming, as well.

You are to stand in this community as the representative of the oldest known human organization; of an Institution whose system of symbolism teaches Faith in God, and conveys important truths which affect the duties and obligations of man to man in all the, relations of life. It seems important, therefore, that you should begin right. You all remember that old but trite saying,

"As the twig is bent the tree's inclined."

Permit me then to urge it upon you, as you commence your Masonic, life, buoyant, full of hope and zeal, to remember that success will depend upon the manner in which you exercise the privileges conferred upon you, perform the duties assigned to you, and the impression you make upon this community. That you may not fail, let me suggest that you be true and steadfast to all your obligations. Be discreet, courteous, tolerant, patriotic, obedient to law, upright and just in all your dealings. Let an influence go out from this place which shall affect the moral and intellectual condition of this community, and spread the principles of Universal Brotherhood among men.

Do not let your desire for material prosperity induce you to open your portals to any who . are unworthy of our privileges, whatever their station or condition in life; for to receive such would bring discredit upon you and the Fraternity. liaise your standard high, and maintain it there.

Be particularly attentive to your initiates. Do not leave them at the very, entrance to your Lodge, but strive, by precept and example, to illustrate to them that our Institution has a charm which is perpetual, a value which is inestimable, and an excellence which is supreme.

The Grand Lodge is pleased to receive you into the fold of Brotherhood, and has the fullest confidence that you will uphold the honor and maintain the dignity of our Order; and would leave with you its benediction, God bless and prosper you!


From Proceedings, Page 1897-177:

WORSHIPFUL MASTER, LADIES AND BRETHREN: The exercises of the day are so felicitous, and bear so much of the impress of our Institution, that I cannot but congratulate you upon this happy event and'.emphasize, so far as I may, the scenes and incidents of the hour.

Could the founders of this Lodge be present, rehabilitated with their mental and physical vigor and zeal of 1797, they would rejoice to see this day, to enter into all its joys and festivities, and add many reminiscences most pleasing to hear. Then, too, with what coyness and embarrassment they would listen to the encomiums upon their work. While wrapped in wonder and astonishment at the great progress which has been made during the last hundred years in science, discovery, knowledge and all the things which make individuals and nations strong, they would be lost in admiration at the present condition of this Lodge and the great Fraternity which they loved so well and in whose interest they labored so zealously. But the term of man's life allotted by the Scriptures has long passed since they were engaged in its busy pursuits, and they have entered that bourn whence no man returns. Our Fraternity, however, still lives, and every day, yes, every hour, it accomplishes something of the work it is designed to do.

It lives because upon its every altar rests the Holy Bible, its Great Light, whence it draws all its inspiration. So inspired, its purpose is to lift man to higher ideals, to develop his moral nature, broaden and deepen his possibilities, and to promulgate the doctrine of the brotherhood of man. It is its glory that under its influence the walls of prejudice and bigotry, which would separate men, have been broken down, and that men of every race and creed can come, not as strangers, but as children of a common Father, assemble around its altar, and unite in adoring the Father of all.

It lives because of the charity it inculcates. Not alone the charity which ministers to the relief of physical .want and suffering, but that which recognizes in every man a brother, soothes the unhappy, sympathizes with the unfortunate and restores peace to troubled minds. There is no sphere so exalted, none so lowly, as to preclude the individual Mason from performing all the works of love and benevolence which it may be possible for him to do. The benefactions of our Institution are increased by the faithfulness of each of us. Single drops make up the flowing rivers and the swelling seas; so Masonry demands the labor of all. Our little deeds of kindness and little words of love may be the very drops which may heal and bind up some breaking heart, cheer on some faint and despondent Brother, and encourage him to go forth again to the conflict with renewed vigor and determination. We should remember that every kindly deed and every act of charity blesses him who gives as well as him who receives.

It lives because it is founded upon the rock of Truth, which is eternal. Truth existed before all philosophies or sophistries, and, like its twin, sister Charity, is older than mankind. In Masonry it stands a colossal figure, to which all eyes are turned, rising above all evil, all perversion. Masonry demands plain, truthful dealing with the whole world. The profane judge the Institution and us by what we do, not by what we say. Masonry requires that we make our words true and our engagements sacred, that we be sincere.and honest, and hence it is that it has been able to overcome and withstand all the invectives which have been hurled against it and to stand to-day everywhere honored and respected. Truth, sincerity and integrity are the elements of friendship and the bond of brotherhood. Masonry is never false nor deceitful.

It lives because it teaches Masons to be obedient to the laws of the country under whose protection they live. Very many of its members have given up all but honor, in the defence and support of the commonweal. It is an important pillar of support and union to free institutions and our happy form of government. Every page of American history is illuminated by the deeds of those who have knelt at the Masonic altar. It is only necessary to recall the names of Washington, Warren, Paul Revere and a host of patriots who beautified their columns in the Temple of Masonry, to suggest to our minds instances of love of country and loyal devotion to its laws of surprising beauty and nobility.

It lives because it is tolerant. Masonry has no creed, no dogma of faith. It reveres and adores God as the Infinite Father. It arraigns no man's political opinion nor interferes with any man's religious creed. To his country and himself it leaves the one, to his conscience and his God it leaves the other. Within the Lodge-room the voice of partisan or sectarian strife cannot be heard; all meet upon the Level, act upon the Plumb, and part upon the Square.

It lives because it is a bulwark against vice and corruption; because it is the most venerable in years, the purest in reputation and the most potent in influence of any system of morals devised by man, and therefore has the consideration and respect of men; it lives because it is founded upon principles as eternal as God.

Such, briefly, is the character of the Institution, the establishment of which in this place, one hundred years ago, we are met to celebrate. The century behind us has been rolled away as a scroll and added to the ages of the past. Standing to-day at the closed portals of the old and upon the open threshold of the new, let us profit by the examples which have come down to us, and as a proof of our own attachment to our noble Fraternity, strive to build up yet higher the walls and towers of our Temple.


From Proceedings, Page 1897-212:

WORSHIPFUL MASTER AND BRETHREN: I thank you for your cordial and fraternal welcome and would tender to you the sincere congratulations of the Grand Lodge upon this occasion. We are pleased to join with you in celebrating the event which this day commemorates.

Generations have come and gone since this Lodge was established, the world has been crowded with events which have affected the condition of all civilized countries, and nations have been brought to know each other more intimately by means of the devices of men skilled in the arts and sciences.

This nation of ours has grown in material and numerical strength far beyond the most sanguine expectations of its founders; rising from a weak but not unstable condition to a great and powerful nation, which commands respect and honor wherever its Hag is unfurled, and seems to have reached the pinnacle of its greatness and grandeur. Whatever has promoted the growth and progress of our country has affected the advancement of our Institution and brought it, also, to a condition which commands respect and esteem.

They who were most prominent in civil affairs at the time this Lodge was established, were active and zealous in promoting the cause of Masonry, and brought to its service and duty the same unswerving fidelity which distinguished them in conducting the affairs of the country. Whether the influence of Masonry controlled in any degree their thoughts and acts in the part they had in directing the affairs of our nation none can know, but that its principles are such as to naturally lead men to set up a form of government which should declare for Fraternity, Equality and Toleration, none can deny.

These great principles are the foundation of our civil laws and of our Institution, and hence we may reasonably assume that Masonry is in no small degree responsible for the great blessings and privileges we enjoy under our form of government.

We annually, as citizens, celebrate with bonfires and illuminations, with speech and song, our nation's birth; why may we not, as Masons, celebrate with fraternal congratulations the day which marks the anniversary of a Lodge which is nearly coeval with our nation? But the profane may ask, What is there to celebrate? The character and work of our Fraternity give the answer.

We here celebrate the one hundredth anniversary of the day on which was established in this community an Institution whose code of ethics teaches men to be noble, true and faithful; which prepares them for the responsible duties of life, and. invites them to cultivate a high moral standard, a close social relationship, a broader manhood, and a God-fearing, Christian citizenship.

And so, Brethren of the Grand Lodge, and Brethren all, this becomes a day for congratulations to this ancient and honorable Lodge. Could there be opened to our view scenes drawn from its journey all the way from 1797 until now, we should congratulate it not only for its venerable age, but for the evidences of devotion to principle and obligation which adorn and beautify it. We should find human life illustrated — an illuminated compendium of the intellect, sensibilities, and will of the men who watched over its interests and directed its path; of men who made effective the lessons drawn from the symbolism of Masonry, and who strove to make Masonry the means to the end. Hence it is that we rejoice in the prosperity of this Lodge and celebrate its birth.

The tendency to venerate ancient institutions is one of the attractions of Masonry. It is not a plant of yesterday, but a giant oak whose growth speaks of ages past. It is our heritage. We of the Craft to-day have received it in its full vigor, and are bound to preserve and transmit it unimpaired. We should be proud that it is venerable, rejoice that it has done the. great work it has had to do, that it grows stronger and more precious with years. We should reverently honor its symbols and ritual, which make it not only a study, but a living Institution, disseminating its principles and bestowing its benefactions in all parts of the civilized world; vindicating its character as an Institution in harmony with true religion, of patriotic impulses, and promotive of the best interests of man in all his relations.

Masonry, my Brothers, offers grand opportunities and imposes great responsibilities. Let me remind you that it is not enough to have been conducted through its ceremonials and charmed by its impressive splendor. These are but the drapery with which it is adorned; the outward signs of its power and inspiration to satisfy the desires of man striving for truth and light; and are worthless to any one who does not make them subservient to the interests of humanity, if they fail to elevate his thoughts and ennoble his Character; to whom they do not speak of love to God and man. Hence it follows that to be a truly good Mason, one must put into practice the principles which Masonry teaches; they should permeate all his human relations and social opportunities.

If the founders of this Lodge had regarded only the outward forms and ceremonies of our Order, the observance of this day would not have been possible. If they had failed to grasp the design and ability of Masonry to meet the demands of society, civilization and humanity, and to recognize it as one of the forces to make men wiser, happier and better, the seed sown here would have fallen upon barren soil and brought forth no fruit. But, being men of intelligence and influence, and closely identified with the interests and welfare of this community, they realized that they should be true and faithful to all their obligations, and therefore they laid the foundations deep and strong; and as the years went on, they saw the walls of their Temple rise in strength and beauty and the Craft keeping equal pace with the advance and growth of our country.

We can almost hear the voices of those true and trusty overseers who directed the Craftsmen through all the years of the century, saying,

"Build well! my men, build well!
Build these walls to future generations.
Your strength,' your skill, your faithfulness, may tell,
That all may say as storms and centuries test them,
'The men of old their Temple builded well.'"

My Brethren, let us remember that the forms of Masonry are instinctively alive, and use every effort to preserve them in their beauty and purity, and in the fulness of their spirit.

My Brothers of Milford, what a precious legacy you have in this ancient Lodge! It must be to you a constant source of glory and pride. Let me exhort you to cherish and nurture it; and may your future be as glorious as the past and happy as the present!


From Proceedings, Page 1897-236:

WORSHIPFUL MASTER AND BRETHREN: It seems that my first words should be to felicitate you upon the happy occasion which demands our presence here, and tender to you the congratulations of the Grand Lodge upon the events of this hour.

Instances are very rare in the history of our Institution which display so much of enterprise, liberality, courage and zeal as are manifest here; therefore it is the more pleasing to join with you in these services, in recognition of your attachment to Masonry, your desire to promote its welfare and interest, and to commend the work which crowns your efforts.

We realize to the fullest extent what the erection of this building means to you, — how much of anxious thought and earnest labor have been required to carry to completion this structure, to say nothing of the financial part of the undertaking. It is a most beautiful Masonic home, with "its several parts fitted with such exact nicety" that it reflects great credit upon all who have been connected with its construction, and upon the Masons of Newton. Desirous of being partakers of the joys and fraternal congratulations which emphasize these ceremonies, we were happy to accept your cordial invitation to come from the marts of commerce, the workshop, indeed from all the various employments of life, to aid you, by the. application of the implements of operative Masonry, in dedicating this beautiful Temple to the uses and service of speculative Freemasonry.

From this hour it will be to you an object of the greatest delight and comfort. To it your thoughts will turn and your hearts go out as did the soul of all Israel towards the great Temple at Jerusalem. The memory of these exercises will remain with you and become the theme upon which you will delight to dwell. Here men will meet upon the Level and part upon the Square. Here the cares, employments and tangled thread of daily life will he laid aside or forgotten, and under the genial influence of this place new visions of the great possibilities and imperative requirements of life will be opened, and the enduring principles of our Fraternity find their perfect exemplification; and the influence which shall go out from here will exert a happy and lasting effect upon this community.

While we would exult in the great success and prosperity of the present day, and perchance anticipate a future career which may conduct to more exalted spheres of usefulness, we should not, nay, we must not, forget our present responsibilities. The symbols of our. Fraternity teach us that harmony, prosperity and stability depend upon the faithful observance of our obligations and the strict performance of duty.

With the close of its operative character, Freemasonry did not cease. In its new, its speculative character, the implements of the Craft have become symbols of truths which appeal to the mind, and upon which has been erected a system of ethics of great purity, which discloses a wide field of thought and imagination, which we can contemplate with admiration, and which in an unspoken language suggests duties and laws that make life nobler and character stronger and more symmetrical.

Freemasonry needs a champion defender no longer. Its principles, aims and purposes are the property of mankind; they prevail wherever human society exists, and are before the world for criticism and. discrimination. It unites men on the broad level of whatever they have in common — their desires, their efforts, their hopes and aspirations. It is a recognition of the. equality of men and the fraternal obligations which bind men together. Whatever concerns the welfare of the human race is the concern of Freemasonry. It is the best and noblest exponent of the sentiment of universal brotherhood.

This leads me to suggest that high moral character is an essential factor in making effective the grand principles of our Fraternity. We may be builders of temples made with hands, or of character. Freemasonry teaches that there is a moral as well as a material edifice.

Let us, then, gather inspiration from the scenes and incidents of this evening, and strive to weave into our lives the lessons and admonitions which our Institution is so constantly impressing upon us, and build within us a Temple which shall far excel in glory the Temple of Solomon or Zerrubabel — a temple of character, which shall stand out like some ancient temple, of exquisite proportions and sculptured finish.

W. Master and Brethren: What feelings of pride and satisfaction must thrill your hearts whenever you occupy these beautiful apartments! How much sweeter will be your communion in them! But you are not the only ones who will be joyous and happy; the whole Fraternity will partake of your joy and rejoice in your prosperity.

Therefore in their name, and as their representative, I bring to you their fraternal congratulations and earnest hope for a continuance of your abundant success; that this Hall may be protected from accident, and long remain a monument of your attachment to Masonry; that your Lodge may continue to flourish, your union to strengthen and your happiness to abound.


From Proceedings, Page 1987-244:

MR. CHAIRMAN, BRETHREN, LADIES AND GENTLEMEN: The custom of laying the Corner-stones of public buildings with appropriate ceremonies has come down to us out of the past. It is not improbable that its early use was to give to great undertakings notable and effective beginning, or to win the favor of mythological deities who were supposed to control the destinies of men or direct public affairs. In our time the libations of corn, wine, and oil which we make express our desire that health, plenty and peace may abound among the people for whose comfort and convenience the structures are erected.

The Grand Lodge is pleased to perform this service on this occasion, to ,ask the favor of the Supreme Grand Architect upon this undertaking, and that He will bless this community with all that is needful for their happiness and comfort.

Masonry was born as an order of artisans. The hands that gave it birth were hardened by the tools of the workmen. It is proper therefore that we, their successors, should participate in these ceremonies and aid in the construction of a building within whose walls, laws and regulations shall be enacted which shall affect equally all classes of this community. And the more is this service particularly appropriate to this occasion, because the implements of the Craft, the Square, Level, and Plumb, so essential as guides to the Craftsmen whose labor shall raise these walls, are symbols of principles — morality, equality and rectitude of life — equally essential to the true development of a community. It is through and by these principles, so simple and of universal application, that Freemasonry seeks to do its work. These grand principles commend themselves to all and are suited to all circumstances and occasions, uniting those of varied opinions, associations and vocations on a basis of humanity and worth, which makes all equal and yet degrades none. It is no slight thing to have in a community or State the influence of our Fraternity, which strives by its teachings to make men better and wiser; to soften the asperities and smooth the harsh lines of bitter controversy, and to improve the condition of the people among whom it exists.

Then, too, it is loyal to the country under whose protection it lives. It is as old as government. Loyalty and obedience are found in its administration. It is a stranger to all disturbances in communities or States, and always discountenances such calamities ; indeed, it is government itself. Its obligations, do not release any man from his duties as a citizen, nor can they in any way conflict with those duties. No man, whatever his position, the governor in his chair, the judge upon the bench, the statesman at his desk, will find that the discharge of his duties is in any way influenced by his Masonic obligations, except so far as they lead him to be true and just. It would be a perversion of his obligations were it otherwise. The object and the purpose of our Fraternity are to incite to greater, fidelity in the discharge of every duty, in every station of life, and to promote in all possible ways the upbuilding of civil and religious liberty upon the foundations which our fathers by their toil and untold suffering laid so deep and strong. Among its members are enrolled all classes, those who walk in. the highest stations of life, as well as the more humble,, yet no one can point to a single instance where their influence as Masons has been used to incite to disobedience to law, disloyalty to government, or to promote evil.

The strength of our national character, the grandeur of our national virtue, have grown out of and been developed by the lives and deeds of men who have worn the insignia of our Institution unstained, been true to its principles, and unswerving in their fidelity, to whatever was right and noble.

There is another tenet of our Institution to which I would briefly refer. The paternity of God, which with the fraternity of men are inseparable. Where is the Mason who has forgotten his allegiance to his Creator, or his plighted faith? Where is the Mason who has forgotten the impressive lessons of the existence, the goodness, the beneficence of the Supreme Architect of the universe, which our rites and ceremonies so constantly teach? They have not been, nor can they be, forgotten by any true Brother.

I have said that Masonry is government. I cannot say that it is religion; but the spirit which dwells in religion is the spirit which gives light and power to Masonry. It is an Institution of speculative science designed to meet the needs of humanity, to promote peace and good-will, to inculcate love of country and respect for constituted authority, and to establish among all people that advanced sentiment which, we term Civilization.

In every undertaking a Mason acknowledges his fealty to God. Hence it is that Masonry, standing amid the institutions of religion on the one hand and civil government on the other, is enabled to reach out its arms and touch man in his religious and civil duties, and stimulate him to do his highest and noblest work.

Mr. Chairman and gentlemen of Revere, we are glad to bring to you the service and duty of our Fraternity on this occasion, and would express the hope that its great underlying principles may have their influence in this community, that all your people may draw something of good from these ceremonies, and be induced 'to contemplate more and more the important duties they owe to God, their country, their neighbor, and themselves.


From Proceedings, Page 1897-302:

The one hundredth anniversary of the establishment in this community of an Institution whose tenets uphold public morality and private virtue, and prepare men for the better discharge of every duty and service to God and man, demands more than a passing notice.

One hundred years! Within that cycle of time generations have been born, filled out the measure of life, and passed away. This country of ours, in its material prosperity, has rivalled all other nations, and we stand today the peer of any people in the world. All civilized nations have advanced in modes of thought and living, the result of the cultivation of arts and sciences.

One hundred years! Think of such a span of life, in any community. It is almost impossible to gather up and consider the momentous events which have marked its progress. It is difficult for us, in this age of comparative ease, surrounded as we are by appliances and conveniences which enhance so much our comfort and well-being, to conceive of the conditions of this community in respect to its modes of life, thought and varied pursuits, one hundred years ago.

Our country, you will remember, had, but a few years before, witnessed the victorious ending of its great struggle for independence, in which the founders of this Lodge bore an important part. All classes of men were striving to accommodate themselves to the new order of affairs, and lay the foundations of a great nation upon the broad principles of Loyalty, Equality and Fraternity. Out of the loyalty and patriotism which characterized the men of that day came the gentler virtues, upon which rest the highest achievements, of any people or race. The refinements and graces of advanced civilization are the peculiar and distinguishing characteristics of a bold and courageous people; and hence it is, as we believe, that the founders of this Lodge desired, by its establishment, to disseminate in this community the great principles which represent' the highest and noblest spirit which should enter into the education, development and growth of whatever is required to raise and improve the condition of mankind.

There are but few things which command our respect and inspire our veneration more than antiquity. You will remember that a few days ago the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and the United States, by their representatives, celebrated the launching of that always victorious ship, the Constitution, one hundred years ago. It is true that the gallant craft, stripped and weather-beaten, exhibits nothing of its original power and strength, but around it cluster memories which stir the hearts of all true Americans, and these memories will become more sacred, and revered as time goes on.

Antiquity is the seal which attests the title of our Institution. Ancient, mysterious perhaps in its origin, it stands in the silent grandeur of its antiquity. It is sometimes said that Masonry is grand because it is old; but it is old because it is grand. It glories in age without the least sign of dotage, and is present to-day in all the vigor of youth and wisdom of manhood. It can never become an insignificant and voiceless . relic of a remote and forgotten past. The traditions of the Craft are as old almost as history. They provide for us a constant source of pride and glory. The fires kindled upon Masonic altars in the dim and shadowy past have continued to burn with increasing flame, and are made moreand more beautiful by age.

When we think of the age of Masonry, of. its universality, its symbols and emblems so effectively chosen, the sublimity of its ritual and forms; when we remember the great minds that have cherished its tenets, and the eloquence which has made them so impressive, and recall all that it appeals to in the past and hopes for in the future, who can estimate its position and power? Time has sanctified its principles and virtues. It silently exposes its symbols with, all their mystical significance to our view, and it grows stronger and more precious, and its uses become more varied, as time goes on.

It is not therefore an Institution which lives wholly in the past, but a great brotherhood which has at heart the welfare of the people among whom it exists, and seeks by its teachings to advance civilization, to promote law and order, and generally to make the world better for men to live in. Taking pride in what it has done, in what it is, it bestows the legacies of human brotherhood it possesses, bringing a benediction upon all, and reaping its reward in the advancement of human progress. It has been said that a community is responsible for the character of its institutions. May we not acid that the institutions of a community are important factors in shaping and developing the character of its people? It seems to me that this is proven in some degree by the condition of our Commonwealth, whose laws bear to-day the impress of the men and women who came here, landing at Plymouth, to establish institutions which should have for their controlling sentiment, high morality, noble character, Christian fortitude and freedom. May we not apply this principle to this immediate locality, and claim that Freemasonry, represented by men of like natures and emotions, has been most useful, and aided beyond expression or measure in directing and developing the moral and intellectual character of this community? Sound morality, human enlightenment and Freemasonry are inseparable.

Like every other human organization, Freemasonry has its faults, its defects, its inefficient methods. It often has to acknowledge that its power to do good is not equal to its will and desire, that it cannot make every one who knocks at its doors better and wiser. But it rarely, happens that it exerts no good influence at all upon its members and through them upon the people among whom it exists. One thing is certain, it never made a good man bad nor a bad man worse; nor has it ever induced men to be corrupt, false or treacherous.

My Brothers, as you stand to-day at the close of one century in the life of this Lodge and look forward into another, you may well gather new courage and inspiration from the past to strengthen you in meeting the demands and problems of the future. You cannot overtake the future, it will always be a little in advance of you; you should, therefore, in order to control it to some degree, perform the duties which are present and within your reach. Seize upon the opportunities and privileges which are about you, and do not wait for some convenient occasion, some propitious season, some notable event to immortalize you and your work. Remember the zeal, constancy and fidelity of Hiram the builder. And be assured that equal fidelity to the trust reposed in you will be an inspiration to others and awaken in them a high moral endeavor to illustrate the grace, dignity and supreme truths of our Order.

I bring to you the sincere, heartfelt congratulations of the Grand Lodge on this happy occasion, and rejoice with you in the event which this day celebrates. This Lodge as it stands here to-day is an embodiment and memorial of the spirit which actuated its founders. I would therefore urge you to make it the shrine of your Masonic Faith, the sanctuary of your Masonic Hope, the home of your Masonic Love.


From Proceedings, Page 1898-3:

BRETHREN OF REPUBLICAN LODGE : The custom of consecrating buildings to the worship of God or dedicating them to educational or charitable uses is universal and time-honored.

It was the custom of the ancients to pour libations or make sacrificial offerings • to some particular deity, whenever they were to make long voyages or start upon their warlike incursions, and to pour liquors upon the earth as a libation to invoke its fruitfulness. This custom has come down to us, and we follow it, not because of any supposed virtue it has, but simply as a symbol, an emblem. The act of pouring corn, wine and oil in our Masonic ceremonies represents our wish that health, plenty and peace may abound for the comfort of mankind, and that the building thus dedicated may be used for the development and ennoblement of man's nature.

Man is preeminently a social being. He seeks the companionship of congenial men, men of the same temperament, thought and purposes ; and upon coming into social relations with his fellows, whether in families, neighborhoods, or the larger congregations of people of similar origin, tastes and habits, he discovers in all his relations with them his dependence, and looks to them for sympathy, assistance and true companionship. He also learns, very soon, that in his intercourse with them, there must be a fixed standard or rule of conduct, some law which shall secure the interests of all and protect every one in his rights; and that by uniting the individual efforts of all, and directing them systematically, greater and better results are obtained than by unorganized, personal exertion.

There are certain elements or principles which are accepted as essential to all systems designed to affect men in their relations to each other. Among them are a belief in a Supreme Being, brotherly love, relief, truth and charity. These are principles upon which all must and do agree. Masonry accepts and plants itself upon these self-evident truths, which lie at the foundation of all true religion and morality, and upon the practice of which all human happiness rests. It earnestly and constantly inculcates these principles in its Lodge-rooms, its lectures and writings. In fact, in all its proceedings, public and private, the great duties of life are impressed upon the consciences of men — reverence to God his first duty; kindness to his neighbor according to the golden rule; respect for himself by avoiding irregularities which would impair his faculties. He is also taught loyal obedience to the laws of the country under whose protection he lives. Indeed, Masonry is the embodiment of all truth, all obligation. About its altars, through all its ceremonies, and in all its impressive lessons, its influences and the spirit of its ministry are an inspiration which prompts us to fulfill our obligations, civil and moral, with fidelity and zeal.

As I receive your welcome to-night; as I realize to what a delightful service you invite me; as I feel the warmth of mutual love which flows from heart to heart; as I contemplate the whole mission of Masonry, I join.with you in the congratulations and joy which belong to this hour. This is ho common event. We here dedicate a building whose "gates open but to the magic password deposited in the bosoms of the faithful;" within which no ambition stirs the passions, no discordant opinions destroy peace, the violence of discussion ceases, and only those qualities which lie at the foundation of human brotherhood are called into action.

Here will be woven that golden cord of unity in thought, in heart, in spirit, and in work which binds men together with a subtle and mystic force.' Here in the secrecy of your own temple, and with rites peculiar to our Institution, will be inculcated principles of the highest import to man in all his relations.

This method of communication between men has prevailed in all ages. You will remember that the Athenians bowed before a statue of brass represented as tongueless to denote secrecy. The Egyptians worshipped the god of silence, who was represented pressing his finger upon his lips. The scholars of our day have proven that the religious rites of the early Christians were scrupulously guarded as secrets, and termed sacred mysteries; and at his initiation the Christian was given a white stone on which a new name was written to be kept as a badge of membership. Secrecy in some degree prevails in all of the social, domestic and official relations of man. Masons adopt it as a convenient method to promote and secure the noble ends of the Fraternity. But the secrecy of our Institution does not constitute its Landmarks. They are of the least importance in the work Masonry is intended to do. Its beauty and principles do not depend upon these; for it can and would live without them.

Therefore, my Brothers, as you meet in this beautiful Temple to practise in secret the rites and ceremonies of our Order, remember that they are only symbols of the great truths which it is the mission of Masonry to teach, and which give to it its peculiar identity as a system of morality, equality and brotherly love, whose work is as broad as humanity, and which like the great works of nature is silent but irresistible.

Whatever the origin of Freemasonry, its history is marked by the influence of its principles upon all succeeding.generations, and is notable and illustrious not so much on account of the men who have been its exponents as for the perfectness of its truths, the sway it has over men's minds, and the silent but effectual influence it has over their souls, which has led them to a higher life and nobler manhood. Men do not know, nor can they know, the great good that has been clone and is being accomplished by the plain, simple lessons of our Fraternity. Not even those who have come within the mystic circle can estimate its full power as a factor in the problem of life. Withdrawing from the gaze of the world, asking nothing from its favor, independent of its power or opinion, Masonry lives a law and power unto itself, which for ages has directed and preserved it, and it will continue to fulfil its mission so long as men are endowed with hopes, desires and aspirations.

Worshipful Master and Brethren, a few years ago the Grand Lodge was pleased to accept your cordial invitation to assist in the celebration of your centennial anniversary. "A quarter century of ardent and anxious struggle — a quarter century of vituperation, misfortune and decadence — a quarter century of resuscitation and recovery — had passed, to be succeeded by the golden years in which you were the fortunate and happy participants." With equal pleasure the Grand. Lodge would join with you to-night on an occasion which marks the culmination of your hopes and desires, and establishes you in the new home which your liberality and zeal have erected. It is certainly a most beautiful and commodious structure, and its dedication should be the commencement of a new epoch in your history. To it you will turn as the "Mecca" whence you receive inspiration and encouragement. Your communion here will grow sweeter and closer as time goes on, and this beautiful Masonic home, of fair proportion and exquisite taste, will be an incentive to you to illustrate with greater zeal and fidelity the unchangeable principles of our Institution.

Please accept, Worshipful Master and Brethren, the congratulations and commendation of the Grand Lodge on this happy occasion, and our earnest wish that yon may realize in the greatest degree your most sanguine hopes and expectations.


From Proceedings, Page 1898-51:

BRETHREN OF THE GRAND LODGE: The ritualistic forms and ceremonies of Masonry are built upon and are symbolical of the builder's art. The tools and methods of work of the ancient Masons are still in use by the Craft in modern times. In the dim, shadowy past the Plumb, Square and Level were implements in daily use by the ancestors of modern Masons. In the dark ages the Craft' was banded together for mutual protection, for the diffusion among themselves of a knowledge of their art, and for the practice of those principles of Brotherly Love and Charity which have characterized it throughout its existence. Their lives were devoted to the embellishment of the world with structures which still exist in England, France and Italy, and which are to-day viewed with admiration and awe by the beholder; while the ruins of still earlier works are scattered throughout the ancient world.

Less than two centuries ago, Freemasonry, except for mystic purposes, suspended handicraft labors and devoted itself to the speculative part of the art. Its high tone attracted the attention of many good and great men of all sects and professions. Through their influence a gradual change was wrought in the Order, and from an organization of operative Masons it became an Order devoted to speculative, allegorical science — the forms and rites, ritualistic ceremonies, symbolical of the arts practised by our ancient Brethren, and also of. the great moral truths they sought to inculcate and disseminate.

The question is often asked by the profane why the Masonic Fraternity is entitled to preeminence in the performance of ceremonies like those of to-day in connection with public edifices. We answer, because our Craft is founded upon the soundest moral principles, and the lessons and truths taught by it are of the purest and most ennobling character; chief among which are the belief in a Supreme Being, the Grand Artificer of the Universe, in the immortality of the soul and the existence of a future state of happiness. These tenets entitle it as a Body qualified-by moral worth. As an Order we are the custodians of the arts, legends and traditions of the ancient builders, whose legitimate successors we claim to be. This qualifies us as to capability in the peculiar province of builders. Our ritualistic forms and ceremonies are more beautiful and impressive upon such occasions than the forms of other organizations, being the crystallization of the wisdom of centuries, while the beauties of theirs are largely borrowed from us. The venerable history of the Order, its unsectarian nature and its representative composition, strengthen and confirm the title of the Masonic Fraternity to officiate as the sponsors of public beneficent institutions.

What mystery the inspired Psalmist hangs about the Cornerstone! How grandly the author of Job puts, in the words of the Almighty, the Masonic character of his work of creation: "Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth? Declare, if thou hast understanding. Who hath laid the measures thereof, if thou knowest? or who has stretched the line upon it? Whereupon are the foundations thereof fastened? or who hath laid the corner-stone thereof? When the morning stars sang together, and the sons of God shouted for joy."

The Fraternity of this country have officiated in ceremonies attending the laying of Corner-stones on many occasions., One of the most notable occurred on the 18th of September, 1793, when the Corner-stone of the National Capitol at Washington was laid by our illustrious Brother George Washington, then President of the United States, assisted by the Grand Lodge of. Maryland.

On the 4th of July, 1795, being the twentieth anniversary of. American Independence, the Corner-stone of the State House of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts was laid by His Excellency Samuel Adams, Governor of the Commonwealth, assisted by the Most Worshipful Paul Revere, Grand Master, the Right Worshipful William Scollay, Deputy Grand Master, the Grand Wardens and Brethren of the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts.

On the 4th of July, 1848, the Corner-stone of the National Monument to Washington was laid by the Grand Master of Masons in the District of Columbia. On this occasion the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts was represented by R. W. Edward A. Raymond as Grand Master, R. W. Charles W. Moore as Deputy Grand Master, R. W. Winslow Lewis as Senior Grand Warden, and R. W. Albert H. Kelsey as Junior Grand Warden. Of these representatives the only survivor is our Brother Albert H. Kelsey, who happily is present to-day, and is actively engaged in the construction of the building to. be here erected.

On the 17th of June, 1825, the fiftieth anniversary of the Battle of Bunker Hill, M. W. John Abbot, Grand Master of Masons in Massachusetts, laid the Corner-stone of the Monument erected to commemorate that famous contest. He was assisted by our illustrious Brother General Lafayette; and fifty years afterwards the apron worn by our honored guest on that occasion was presented to the Grand Lodge, and is now in our archives.

One of the most memorable of our Corner-stone ceremonies occurred on the 14th of October, 1830, when the erection of the Temple at the corner of Temple Place, in Boston, was commenced. There our first attempt was made to provide our own vine and fig-tree; but the name was Legion of those who sought to molest and make us afraid. The anti-Masonic excitement was at its height; and it required great courage on the part of the devoted Brethren who marched through the jeering crowd from Faneuil Hall to the site, and performed the ceremonies: amidst the execrations of the turbulent multitude. As Brother Moore said: "It was a trying time, and it required a good deal of nerve to meet it; but it was met, and the Corner-stone was laid." Soon after the work was done, however, our opponents still further vented their spite by taking advantage of the darkness of the night to inscribe upon the Corner-stone the word 'Golgotha', thereby intimating that the building was to be a home for murderers, "a place of skulls."

One generation enjoyed the accommodations there afforded, but the next found it necessary to make more ample provision, and apartments were fitted up by remodelling the buildings then located on this site. Five years later the destructive fire of April 6, 1864, left us nothing but land and "th' unconquerable will."

On the anniversary of the ceremony last described, on the 14th of October, 1864, the Corner-stone of a new Temple was laid on the spot where we now stand; but how changed the conditions from those that surrounded the ceremony of 1830! Thousands of enthusiastic Brethren, old and young, from all parts of the State, cheered and encouraged by the approval and sympathy of a countless multitude of admiring spectators, gathered here to attest their devotion to a vindicated Fraternity now reinstated in its rightful position of general confidence and respect. In the building thus auspiciously commenced many here present received their first Masonic light, and by all of us the pleasantest Masonic associations are connected with it.

To-day we lay the Corner-stone of an edifice which we trust will prove as useful and dear to our successors for many years to come as were the two Masonic homes which preceded it and are now relegated to memory and to history.

Brethren, it has been the immemorial custom of our Ancient and Honorable Fraternity to lay, with its ancient forms, the Corner-stones of buildings erected for the worship of God, for charitable or educational objects, and for the purposes of the administration of justice and free government. This is always a pleasant duty. But our pleasure oh this occasion is greatly enhanced from the fact that the Grand Lodge is to lay the Corner-stone of a Temple which will be our Masonic home and exclusively our own, and to which we shall turn as did all Israel towards the great Temple at Jerusalem.


From Proceedings, Page 1898-89:

WORSHIPFUL MASTER AND BRETHREN: The hand of the artisan rests from toil, the mechanic has ceased his labor, and this beautiful structure, which marks the completion of their efforts, has been dedicated to its intended use.

It is an hour for the most sincere and hearty congratulations; an hour to which you have looked forward with great pleasure; and now that your work is accomplished you can with pride and satisfaction enter into its full enjoyment.

Freemasonry was originally purely operative in its character; after a time scholars and philosophers were admitted to its guild; whereupon it lost its operative character, and became speculative, retaining the working tools as symbols of the tenets and principles which were engrafted into its constitution, and through these becoming one of the great moral forces of civilization. The rapid progress of civilization is due to a very large extent to the influence of our Order, for its teachings tend to elevate the mind and bring into action all the nobler attributes of nature, and promote moral and intellectual perfection.

You have erected here for your use a beautiful and convenient building. Your time and attention have been freely given to its inception and completion, and it stands here as a witness to your zeal and fidelity. The Craft throughout the State will be stimulated by your example, and the principles and motives of our Fraternity will be the more fully illustrated in this community. But, my Brothers, I am constrained to suggest that, while you have surrounded yourselves with all these comforts and conveniences, and shown an eagerness to go onward and upward, you should not forget the foundations upon which our Institution rests. You will remember that it is said of some nation that it protected with great care the top of a lighthouse from the severe storms which might sweep along the coast, unmindful of the constant surging and washing of the waves at its base, which in time wore away the foundation, and it fell. So in our efforts to preserve the outward forms of our Order, however beautiful they ma'y be, let us be watchful and careful that no undermining current be permitted to bring disaster to it, and that it does not suffer from our carelessness or indifference in preserving its fundamental principles.

Ours is a peculiar Institution in many respects. It is of such character that it does not depend upon the condition or work of any other similar institution for its success, nor does it undertake to do its work through any means other than those which lie within its scope. In this respect it is exclusive. Whenever, as has sometimes happened, it has formed an alliance with any other association, of whatever character, difficulty and oftentimes disaster have inevitably followed. Its methods cannot be changed to conform to those of other organizations, nor can theirs be brought into harmony with ours with any degree of success.

While it is our duty to recognize and welcome all means which may be employed to elevate and ennoble the condition of man, and while we are most happy to bid them Godspeed, yet we cannot subordinate our Fraternity to them, nor do we invite them to come under our exclusive control and direction. Hence it is, as I have said, that our Institution is exclusive. I cannot at this time elaborate this thought further, but must leave it to each of you to work out for himself, feeling sure that you will find that the best interests of our Fraternity demand that we should stand firmly upon the ancient landmarks and continue in the policy of the fathers. They made Freemasonry what it is; caused it to grow in strength and power year by year; handing down from father to son, from patriarch to novice, its principles and methods; and because the son and novice have been true and faithful to the traditions transmitted to them it walks the earth with all the vigor and freshness of youth, exerting a helpful influence in every community where it exists, notwithstanding, or rather in spite of the weight of years which is upon it.

We read that when the foundation of the temple which the great king of Israel erected on Mount Moriah was brought to light, pillar and arch were found as massive and strong as they were when that wise king dedicated it to the service of Jehovah. The temple has fallen into ruin ; the glory and power of the king are but a memory; not the name of a workman in the quarry, forest or temple remains to us; but the perfectness of their work as shown in these foundation stones attests, their fidelity. May we not from this draw a lesson for to-day? In a temple which your zeal and fidelity have caused you to erect let us summon to this. Communication the spirit of the founders of this Lodge who stood in your places one hundred years ago, and from it catch something of the inspiration which actuated them, to stimulate us to preserve in their purity the ancient landmarks of the Fraternity.

My Brothers, it is our pleasant privilege to bring to you the earnest, sincere congratulations of the Grand Lodge on this happy occasion, to join with you in all the joys of the hour, to express our full appreciation of your work, and leave with you our highest commendation.


From Proceedings, Page 1898-97:

My Brothers, the past is valuable only for the experience it brings to us and the lessons it teaches. It is crowded with sad and bitter memories and great and noble achievements. It warns us of the hidden rocks which would wreck our happiness, the quicksands which would engulf us, and also points to the course which would lead to success and great accomplishments. The great past speaks to us to-day. One hundred years drop out and we are standing face to face and grasping hands with men who with Level and Plumb, Square and Compass, straightened and bound the walls and angles of this ancient Lodge; and from the strange scenes about us we catch inspiration to follow their example, and to do what we may to preserve and transmit the sublime principles of our Institution. Their acts influenced not only themselves and those about them, but they affect us to-day and will exert a power in years to come. Their words ring in our ears and will be heard by men yet unborn. And so it is that our Institution, while in harmony with the conditions of to-day, reaches back into achievements of the past and forward into the possibilities of the future. It was not created for any one age, but for all ages, and will always command the admiration of mankind.

You will remember the Jewish tradition that every morning little angels are born by the brook that gives life and vigor to the flowers of Paradise. They do not work; their whole life is a song; and when evening comes they cease their song and disappear. Thus it has been with a large number .of the associations which have arisen and flourished for a time in the past. They had no abiding principles which would satisfy the aspirations and hopes of men; nothing in their practice or theory which could open broad fields of usefulness; no deep purpose to claim the interest of humanity; no foundation upon which to erect a superstructure which would command the admiration and support of the intelligent and learned mind, and unite men in the bonds of a common brotherhood; and hence they fell into oblivion. But it is not so with our Institution. It stands to-day stronger than ever, and looks back upon ages which are filled with monuments of its usefulness and power.

But it may be asked, what gives it its power and usefulness? What attracts king and subject, statesman and peasant, Jew and Gentile, to its portals? What gives it its peculiar identity? Not its so-called secrets; not its ceremonies, impressive though they be. There is no importance, no mysterious importance, attached to them. They are in no sense the foundation stones of our temple. Its great principles — universal and catholic as they are — are not mysterious.

Every one knows what charity, truth, virtue, life and death are, and believes that his soul will live eternally. It is these great truths and realities, which it is the mission of Masonry to teach, that lie at the very foundation of our Institution and give it its peculiar identity. The inculcation of these principles by instructive lectures and impressive symbols has given Masonry its honorable position, made it universal in its brotherhood, boundless in its possibilities, and unrivalled by any human institution in its power for good.

Age has brought no infirmity, but its vigor and the measure of veneration accorded to it test its excellence. It is in harmony with the activities of this nineteenth century.

Out of the wisdom and achievements of the past which tradition and history have transmitted to us, out of the past of humanity, it has come down to us, hand in hand and keeping even pace with education and advancing civilization, diffusing its influence and leaving its impress upon every age, and to-day stands as a conservator of law, liberty, equality, fraternity and the dignity and freedom of man ; and with the silent ministrations of the symbolism of the Square and Compass, the Level and Plumb, seeks to reprove injustice and oppression, and establish among men the principles of charity and brotherly love.

W. Master and Brethren: I bring to you the congratulations of the Grand Lodge on this happy occasion. We rejoice with you in the many memories and traditions which it is your privilege to possess, in the great success which has attended this Lodge for so many years; and would recognize in these your fidelity to the great trust reposed in you. Your personal, individual efforts have been an inspiration to others, and awakened in them an endeavor to illustrate in the most perfect manner the grace, dignity and excellence of our Institution.


From Proceedings, Page 1898-106:

MR. CHAIRMAN AND FRIENDS: It gives us much pleasure to bring to you the service of our ancient Institution, to assist you in laying the Corner-stone of an edifice to which all of your citizens may come for a-judicial determination of any grievance affecting their persons or property, and from which will issue mandates and presentments which will command the respect and obedience of all who shall come within their authority.

Justice is "the ligament which holds civilized beings and civilized nations together," and wherever its temple stands and is reverenced, there will prevail peace and prosperity. A strict regard for whatever is due from the individual to the community is the very corner-stone of civil liberty. Absolute liberty is license, lawlessness and anarchy, and is dangerous in the extreme, but liberty restrained and. regulated by just laws is the foundation of all government. Hence judicial government is instituted for the common good, for the safety, protection and happiness of the people, and it offers its benefactions to the rich and poor, the great and humble, alike. It underlies all civilization, and, in a word, is the consummation of law.

A day more appropriate for these services could not have been chosen, a day held in remembrance of those who on yonder hillside fought and fell in defence of the principles of the equality of all men before the law, of civil liberty and mutual privileges and obligations; whose achievements have made this nation greater in power and all the attributes of beneficent sovereignty than imperial Rome.

Mr. Chairman, your committee imposed upon us a grateful duty and office when we were invited to lay this Corner-stone with our ancient rites and ceremonies, which are the oldest of a public character retained by us, and are such as have been performed by us from the earliest ages of civilization.

Our Institution is not inclined to ostentation, nor do we seek for public honor, but we are glad to assist on important occasions relative to the erection of public buildings, whether for religious, educational or judicial purposes.

We sincerely pray that all of your citizens may be blessed with health and plenty, that peace may abide with you, and the honor and reputation of your city be forever preserved.


From Proceedings, Page 1898-115:

Ralph Waldo Emerson said, "Books are the best of things, well read: abused, the worst." The pleasure we derive from books is grateful to us, its character ennobling, and they are a source of continuous enjoyment. It has been said, "A man's wisdom maketh his face to shine."

The advance of authorship as a profession in this country, and the increase of American works of a purely literary character during the last fifty years have been marvellous. To the making of books, there seems no end.

In the early days of our history as a nation, before we had completely broken away from the mother country, a very large proportion of the people were employed in the various mechanical arts and the cultivation of the soil. There were in those days only limited opportunities presented to the youth for mental improvement. Hannah Adams, in her memoirs, says, "'The country schools were kept but a few months in the year, and all that was taught in them was reading, writing and arithmetic. The books chiefly made use of were the Bible and Psalter." We know there were many learned and highly cultivated people at that time; but the carrying on of the government, political and military, opened fields for the employment of their talents and learning, which they were compelled to enter by the unanimous demand of the people. There was. talent, there was inspiration, but the imperative call for active labor in the service of the country made it impossible for a time to cultivate to any the finer arts, and, as I have said, men who were "smit with the love of song" were induced to quit their literary pursuits, and those who might have been our Homers, Ovids and Virgils were transformed into our Adamses, Franklins, Warrens and Jeffersons.

When the years of strife which culminated in our independence were over, and our country was making rapid progress in wealth, population and literary advantages, the previous conditions no longer claimed the attention of those inclined to literature, and they were left free to employ their time in accordance with their taste, and many appeared hoping to attain renown and position in the field of polite literature. The theologian, scientist and historian also contributed largely to the fund of information, arranging and clothing their statements with great skill, dressing them in new and attractive form. Our country is blessed to-day with many writers whose works have a firm hold on public favor, who have received the gratitude of men in their homes and studies, in the familiar intercourse of social life, and given new impulses, new views, which develop the faculties and eleva.te the qualities of our common nature.

Pliny accounted those men most happy who either did things worthy to be written, or wrote things worthy to be read. John Quincy Adams wrote, " The summit of my ambition would have been, by some great work of literature, to have done honor to my age and country, and to have lived in the gratitude of future ages."

In all nations a good education is that which renders people correct in their manners, agreeable in society and contented in their condition. It is an aid to the harmonious development of the entire nature in man, and to the building up of symmetrical and well-balanced character, and makes each one tributary to the highest good of the whole. It will also lead to increased power among the people. There is need of knowledge in every community, and there is a movement among all classes for its acquisition; and that State, city or town which offers to its inhabitants the amplest means of acquiring it is the one which controls in the highest degree all the conditions which go to give it character, reputation and stability.

When we consider that the tendency of the present times is to largely increase the population of our cities, both, by enlargement of territory and immigration, so that after a time they will embrace a majority of the population, great care should be taken to direct all classes in any and every way, and by all means, which would conduce to industry, sobriety and the attainment and diffusion of knowledge. The hopes of free institutions and constitutional government rest upon these. Alexander Hamilton said: "It is a harsh doctrine, that men grow wicked in proportion as they inform and enlighten their minds."

My friends, it must be a cause for congratulation and thanksgiving, that by the munificence of one of your former citizens you are enabled to establish here an institution, free to all, where maybe read and studied the best thoughts of the best men and women of many generations and of different countries; where may be discovered when and how the foundation of civil society was laid, the ever-changing relations of the world may be brought to view, the rise of empires, and the development and dissolution of nations which have come upon the stage, ruled the world, and finally yielded their places to others; where one may learn something of the purpose of life, that it is not all listless meditation and idle dreams, nor all work and anxiety, but by a happy and reasonable combination of the real and ideal, we grow in whatever gives to it dignity, power, and makes it worth the living; where will be embalmed in words acts of heroism, loyalty, vigilance and patriotism, which bind the individual to the State, give life and strength to the nation, and bring to it honor and renown.

Can you not see, even now, your citizens in full possession and enjoyment of the pleasure which will be theirs when this structure shall be completed? Here will come the professor, the merchant and the artisan, seeking not only pleasure, but information, which will be useful to them in their several vocations; here too will

"The bookworm's features scrawl a smile While gloating on the musty page."

And not only these, but the youth of your city, they who are now laying the foundations of a future career, in your public schools.

The American boy, who is neither born great nor has greatness thrust upon him, whose greatness is his own achievement, who very soon reaches that period in life when he has no other thought than that of winning his own way, to do and be that which makes sterling manhood and good citizenship; and the American girl, to whom have been opened within the last twenty-five years broader and congenial opportunities for the employment and development of her mental faculties, calling into requisition elements of character which bring her into relations with so many of the rights, duties, privileges and honors which pertain to all measures whose purpose is to give ascendancy to the cause of justice and humanity, — they too will find here the thoughts of the wisest and most profound to give new inspiration to their hopes and purpose.

My friends, in view of the possibilities and achievements which await this hour, you have great cause for congratulation and thanksgiving. Our ancient Institution, which has from the earliest ages been a teacher and promoter of the arts and sciences, is glad to bring to you its service and duty upon this occasion, and will rejoice with you upon the completion of this structure and the full consummation of your hopes and desires.


From Proceedings, Page 1898-97:

WORSHIPFUL MASTER: It is very pleasant for us to receive your felicitous welcome. We can hardly realize that you are one hundred years old — I do not mean you personally, nor any of the Brethren or friends here present, but this Lodge; for there is no indication of age in the manner in which "the old lady" has perambulated the streets of your town on this day of heat and humidity. I trust the founders of the Lodge experienced no such discomfort, in the ceremonies of its Constitution one hundred years ago, as you are enduring to-day. We expected a warm time in the peculiar and pleasing services you had arranged-for this occasion, but did hope that nature would be at least temperate in her demands upon our patience and endurance.

In nature nothing is lost; everything changes according to immutable laws. In the world of history, which is that of life and liberty, everything is transformed, slowly when wisdom guides, with violence when passion rules. Lasting, permanent transformations are never the work of caprice or passion. In the study of the causes which incessantly modify the life of nations or a community lies the charm of history, and also its usefulness. The greater part of the historical writings of the world have been devoted to public affairs, with the organized activities, forms of government and methods of administration of nations as a whole, and have been made to deal with movements and institutions which on the one hand conduce to the power of nations, or on the other hand sap and destroy them.

Recent history, however, has not contented itself with this discussion. It has added to the story of affairs the story of the people — their manners, customs, social institutions and intellectual progress; turning the attention of the inquirer from the products of man's agency to the man himself, by the substitution of a new class of facts for those formerly in vogue with historians. So that the subject-matter of the inquiry has become not wholly of the results of human activity, but.also of the race itself; not of the facts and deeds of which men have been the authors, the visible effects of their stay on the earth, the monuments they have builded, the governments they have formed, their wars and treaties, but of the race of mankind in their nature, powers, capacities, or, in a word, an account of themselves.

Hence it is that the modern historian is weaving into his subject the ethnic history of the race or country claiming his attention, and oftentimes views the facts, circumstances and achievements of man as illustrations of the nature and purposes of that particular race, and attempts to discover and set forth the agencies by which and the phases through which men advance from primitive barbarism to the estate of civilized life, man as a being having the power to conceive and execute, and adapt the means to the ends.

We learn that man first planted trees on end and placed others across to provide shelter from the weather — in doing this he became a maker of houses, a builder of structures; and, as at length he emerges into the domain of the higher arts, he becomes more ideal and adorns as well as constructs, and, by the use of color and form, gives outline and substance to things perceived in visions and dreams, which illustrate the desires and ambitions of the maker, showing his ingenuity and industry, his character and skill. So it is with laws and government. While they are the products of the genius of man, they also illustrate the character, intelligence and capabilities of the race for whose benefit and protection they are framed.

As we read the history of man from the earliest times we learn that his physical, intellectual and moral character is largely shaped and defined by his environments. The traveller as he goes from country to country, visiting one people after another, is impressed with the differences he finds in the manners, customs, language and laws. These distinctions are doubtless due to the fact that the tribes of primitive men, by migration, dispersion and the contingency of climate, diverged from the common type, taking new features under the changed conditions in which they were placed. As they advanced in mental growth and vigor their wants became more numerous, and they worked their way up slowly, cautiously, but surely overcoming in some way all the tremendous obstacles which oppressed them. And this advance has been going on age after age — how long, none can estimate. Generation after generation presents itself to us bearing not only the impress of those generations which preceded it, but far in advance of them.

Among the qualities which have aided in a large degree to this progress may be classed the liberal arts arid sciences. It is obvious to all that a study of these broadens the understanding, develops the intellect, awakens in man the most noble aspirations, and leads to an active emulation in making use of all the means presented to improve not only his own condition, but the welfare of all. Among these means may be placed our great Fraternity, the anniversary of the institution of which in this community we are this day celebrating.

From that notable Monday evening, Dec. 11, 1797, when the Grand Lodge granted permission for the establishment of this Lodge in the town of Watertown, afterward removed to Needham, thence to Natick, through conflagration and dire disaster, through those troublous times when to be a Mason was a peril, on to the present, when to be a Mason is an honor, there has stood here an Institution of which one of your orators has said, " When the ear heard me, then it blessed me; when the eye saw me, it gave witness to me, because I delivered the poor that cried, the fatherless, and him that had none to help him." A review of your history, as compiled by Brothers Henry, Gleason and Rockwood, shows that the true spirit of our Institution has prevailed here; that the lights upon your altar have ever guided you in all your works; that the poor have been the recipients of your bounty; the sick, of your commiseration; and the departed, of your solemn services.

It is a lamentable fact that your early records were destroyed, but the scraps which remain indicate that a true and zealous spirit, in maintaining the principles of our Institution, characterized its members. Your records since 1862 show most clearly that it has been in accord with the trend of the times and must have been of great influence in this community.

I bring to you the regards and congratulations of the Grand Lodge on this occasion; express to you its appreciation of the staunch loyalty and support you have given it, and. its best wishes for your future prosperity and success.


From Proceedings, Page 1899-22:

WORSHIPFUL MASTER AND BRETHREN: It was our pleasant privilege, which we remember with great satisfaction, to meet with you not many months since, and lay the Corner-stone of this edifice which has been erected with so much care. It is an added pleasure and gratification to meet with you on this occasion to dedicate the same to Freemasonry, and bring to you the congratulations of the Grand Lodge upon the zeal, taste and liberality you have shown in the preparation of these apartments. We feel also that it must be of great cheer and encouragement to you to have a home so well suited to your requirements.

It occurs to me that could we see the room in Isaiah Hall's tavern, on the main street in Groton, where the first Communication of Saint Paul Lodge was held; lighted with sperm-oil, lamps and tallow dips; with no carpet to deaden the footstep; furnished with wooden seats of unique design, but of great, strength; — not forgetting the pit some ten feet deep, with its ring and tackle, presumed to have played an important part in the ceremonies of our rite; — could we see those appointments as they actually were, and compare them with these commodious apartments, we should .appreciate more.fully than ever, perhaps, the great advance which has been made during the last one hundred years in matters affecting our personal comfort and convenience, and wonder how the ceremonies of our Order could have been effectively performed and the drama of our ritual properly exemplified, under conditions so adverse.

But we must not forget that these conditions were not peculiar to Lodges. The Grand Lodge itself held its Communications, in those days, in apartments connected with the Green Dragon Tavern, the British Coffee House, the Bunch of Grapes Tavern and similar places in the town of Boston. As the Lodges grew in membership and strength, it could not be otherwise than that they were compelled to provide places for their Communications which should be in harmony with the trend of the times and afford them apartments and appointments for conferring the degrees and illustrating the ritual with a greater degree of impressiveness and dignity. This demand has been increasing year by year, and to such an extent during the last fifteen or twenty years that many of our Lodges have expended no inconsiderable sums in erecting buildings for their sole use; while others have leased and prepared, at a great outlay, halls and rooms connected therewith. This indicates the rapid growth and prosperity of our Institution during this nineteenth century.

It is most gratifying to observe that you also have been prosperous and are able to keep in line in the great march of progress which distinguishes this age, and that you inherit from your sires an intense interest and pride in our Fraternity. There have resided within the jurisdiction of these Lodges many Brethren who 'have distinguished themselves not only in the councils of the Grand Lodge, but in directing the affairs of the State and nation. We learn in story and song not a little of the part the founders of our Order in this community had in the stirring events which led up to the organization of our national life, of their devoted loyalty to its interests and unwavering faith in its cause. Of these, not one walks among you to-day, but the story of their fortitude, valor, devotion and achievements will always remain a pleasant memory to you. It is also meet and right, to pay honor and respect to those who so fervently upheld the interests of our Fraternity from the hour it was established here, — since the day that "Bro. John Walton, of Pepperell, was authorized to expend a sum of money not exceeding sixty dollars for a number of bands of music from Boston to attend and perform at the Installation of Saint Paul Lodge." The memory of Timothy Bigelow, John Abbot, Caleb Butler, Augustus Peabody and many of their successors who stood firmly by their principles will ever be green among you.

We of this day and generation do not. have to meet the tasks and discomforts which confronted the fathers, but we have our tasks to perform, and must therefore grasp the point of vantage which the present offers, and use it to. maintain the purity and supremacy of our Order and advance the cause of civilization; so that the glory and renown of our achievements may be a legacy of duty to our successors.

This day and hour are most suggestive. One hundred and twenty-four years ago, about this hour, on the plains of Concord, were heard the volleys of musketry, and the soil was stained with the blood of the yeomen of Middlesex County, spent in launching upon this continent a new republic. Thirty eight years ago to-day, the sound of musketry echoed in the city of Baltimore, and its streets flowed with the blood of citizens of Middlesex County, shed for the preservation of a nation. Our Brethren had a conspicuous part in both of those conflicts. As we strew their graves with the first flowers of spring in memory of their valor and patriotism, let us not forget to place there a chaplet in recognition of their zealous devotion to the principles of our Brotherhood. The establishment of Freemasonry in this country antedates by many years the formation of our civil government. As our eyes catch sight of the tricolor of our Republic as it floats over us on this anniversary, can we not see interwoven in its folds the mystic blue of our Fraternity, which, while it reminds us of the allegiance due to our country, also teaches that the sterner virtues of valor, patriotism, honor and justice are not incompatible with the cultivation of fraternal emotions.

You will remember, my Brothers, that at one time there was woven throughout the length of every rope in the royal navy of England a single scarlet fibre, no part of which could be removed without destroying the entire cable. Such, it seems to me, is the relation which every Lodge bears to Freemasonry. They are not passive, inert fibres, but active, full of life and vitality, forming a cord of great beauty and usefulness. Every kindly word, every charitable deed strengthens and quickens it; every harsh expression, every ignoble act weakens and debases it. In view of this, let me urge it upon you to be true to your profession; keep in mind the stern virtues, zeal and constancy of Saint Paul; recall the justice, truth and unswerving integrity which distinguished Caleb Butler and made him to be honored and respected by all who came within his influence; then will these walls be to you as a beautiful temple whose builder and master is God.


Grand Masters