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From Moore's Freemason's Monthly, Vol. XXXII, No. 8, August 1873, Page 238:


The nativity of St. John the Baptist was celebrated at Haverhill, in this State, by the brethren of that pleasantly located city, on the 24th of June, by the laying of the corner-stone of a new Masonic Temple, and other appropriate festivities. The occasion was one of joyous interest not only to the brethren immediately interested in it, but to the citizens at large, and the arrangements for the day were all carried oat with a completeness and success rarely surpassed, and not often equalled on occasions of the kind.

The Grand Lodge of the State was represented by M. W. Grand Master Nickerson; R. W. William D. Coolidge as D. G. M.; Past Grand Masters Chas. C. Dame and William Parkman as Wardens; R. W. John McClellan, Grand Treas.; R. W. Andrew G. Smith as Recording Grand Sec.; R. W. Charles H. Titus as Grand Chaplain, and others, including the Deputy Grand Master of the District. On arriving at the depot the Grand Lodge was received by the Haverhill Commandery (ninety members), and escorted in carriages to the Masonic Hall, where a procession was formed,—consisting of the members of Merrimack and Saggahew Lodges, respectively under their W. Masters, and numbering together about one hundred brethren,—and proceeded, with occasional delays, to accept the hospitalities which were generously offered them, to the site of the new Temple on the corner of Merrimac and How streets. The ceremonies which occurred here it is not necessary for us to detail, our readers being supposed to be perfectly familiar with them. We may add, however, that the exercises were interspersed by appropriate music by the band, and excellent singing by a select choir.

At the conclusion of these ceremonies, tin Trowel and Gavel used, which were made for the occasion, were presented, the first to Merrimac Lodge and the other to Saggahew Lodge, as memorials. The procession then returned to the Masonic Hall, where the brethren were dismissed; not so however with the festivities. The committee of arrangements had accepted the generous offer of Bro. Dr. J. R. Nichols, the accomplished chemist, of his beautiful grounds at Lakeside Farm (about two miles from the centre of the town, if we recollect rightly), to which the party at once proceeded, and where a bountiful and tastefully arranged banquet was provided for their further acceptance. Spending an hour or more here, the party again took carriages and proceeded to the Kenoza Grounds in the vicinity, where they were joined by their ladies, and where the remainder of the day was pleasantly and joyously spent in boating, singing, croquet, music, dancing, etc., etc., extending intb the evening.

The new Temple is to be a modest but tasty and well-built structure, 84 x 60 feet in measurement. The front on Merrimac street will be of iron, and the sides of face brick with granite or sand-stone trimmings. The ground floor will be finished into two stores, measuring 24 x 82 feet, leaving an entrance to the upper stories of about 9 feet in width. The armory of the Commandery will be on the second floor, and the third and fourth floors will be fitted for the use of the Lodges and other Masonic purposes. The main hall will be 38 x 58 feet, and 26 feet in height. The cost will probably be about $75,000, and it is expected the building will be ready for dedication on the 24th of June next year.


From New England Craftsman, Vol. XII, No. 3, December 1916, Page 89:

One of the most interesting events in the Masonic history of Haverhill, Mass., occurred Monday, Dec. 4th, in the dedication of their remodeled temple. The changes and improvements in the temple, both interior and exterior, make it practically a new building. The original temple was erected about 46 years ago, the cornerstone being laid by Grand Master Sereno D. Nickerson, June 24, 1873. It is a curious fact that no record can be found of its ever being dedicated.

The dedication of the remodeled temple was conducted by Grand Master Melvin M. Johnson, assisted by other officers of the Grand Lodge. Owing to the limited accommodations, the dedicatory exercises were confined to the members of Merrimack and Saggahew Lodges, the two lodges located in Haverhill, the combined membership of which is nearly 900. These, with the members of the Grand Lodge, completely filled the apartments. Previous to the exercises the Grand Master with his suite were handsomely entertained by District Deputy Grand Master Benjamin B. Gilman at his home, "Overlook Farm." He was assisted by Past Master Frederick H. Tilton of Saggahew Lodge who has served Rt. Wor. Brother Gilman as Marshal at his official visits to the lodges in his district.

Grand Master Johnson's suite included: Right Worshipful D. Edward Miller, Senior Grand Warden; Right Worshipful Roscoe E. Learned, Junior Grand Warden; Most Worshipful John Albert Blake, Maiden, Past Grand Master; Right Worshipful William H. L. Odell, Past Deputy Grand Master; Right Worshipful Leon M. Abbott, past Senior Grand Warden; Right Worshipful Charles H. Ramsay, Grand Treasurer; Right Worshipful Frederick W. Hamilton, Grand Secretary; Right Worshipful Fred S. Smith, M. D., District Deputy Grand Master of the 11th Masonic District; Worshipful Rev. R. Perry Bush, Grand Chaplain; Worshipful William M. Farrington, Grand Marshal; Worshipful Charles T. Cottrell, Grand Deacon; Worshipful Charles J. Shepard, Grand Steward; Worshipful Clarence A. Russell, Grand Steward; Worshipful Arthur A. Sondheim, Grand Steward; Worshipful Theodore L. Kelly, Grand Standard Bearer; Worshipful George W. Chester, Grand Tyler.

The officers of both Merrimack and Saggahew Lodges participated in the opening and closing exercises. In his address following the very formal and solemn dedication of the building and its halls, Grand Master Johnson delivered an eloquent address in which he reviewed the history of freemasonry and spoke of its philosophy and its mission.

He spoke especially of the part that freemasonry played in the establishing of the constitutional government of the United States and how its ideals had been imparted to it as its contribution in the building up of the American civilization.

The Grand Master was frequently forced to pause by the applause that greeted his utterances. When the exercises were ended and the lodges closed the members thronged the banquet hall, where a buffet lunch was served.

The changes in the Temple have considerably increased the capacity of the lodge room,—originally it seated about 250. It now accommodates 330. The lodge room is handsomely fur- nished and decorated, a special feature being the vaulted ceiling with gold stars on a blue sky.

Pediments emphasizing the Roman have been constructed over the different stations. The walls are finished to represent caen stone with the joints showing. The lighting is all from the cornice and entirely indirect. The severity of the walls is relieved by fluted pilasters with Doric capitals.

The lodge room has been carpeted in a pleasing shade of blue and upholstery and benches made to conform.

The grand new $7500 organ, with its 1100 pipes, electrically controlled, was installed by the Estey Organ Company of Brattleboro, Vermont. The Boston office of the company, at 120 Boylston Street, is managed by Brother Charles R. Putnam, a well known member of the Craft and Past Commander of Cambridge Commandery, K. T.

The seating capacity of the banquet hall on the top floor remains unchanged. Its appearance has been greatly enhanced by the change in the roof and the installation of new lighting fixtures. A small stage has been constructed above the staircase for the use of musicians and other entertainers.

The armory of Haverhill Commandery Knights Templar has been made 12 ft. longer and 26 new double lockers put in of black walnut to match those already in use. Originally there were 122 such lockers and with the additional ones the armory now accommodates 296 members.

The full committee on reconstructing the building is composed of Charles P. Sumner and Joseph A. Dalrymple from Saggahew Lodge, Nelson C. Hunt and Albert G. Harding of Merrimack Lodge. Lamont H. Chick and Benjamin B. Gilman from Pentucket Chapter, Edward A. Fitts and Charles C. Chase from Haverhill Council, Daniel C. Hunt and George W. Palmer from Haverhill Commandery and Fred D. McGregor and Charles N. Kelly from the Merrimack Lodge of Perfection. Charles C. Chase was chosen chairman and Edward A. Fitts clerk and treasurer of the committee. These two with Benjamin B. Gilman were named as a subcommittee on the remodelling of the building, while Daniel C. Hunt, Joseph A. Dalrymple, Nelson J. Hunt, Albert G. Harding and George W. Palmer were chosen a committee on the furnishings.

Following the dedicatory exercises opportunity was afforded for inspection of the remodeled Temple. All agreed in commending its new attractions and enlarged accommodations.