PITT COUNTY LODGE
Location: Crown Point, North Carolina
Chartered By: Jeremy Gridley
Charter Date: 10/26/1764 tbd
Precedence Date: 10/26/1764
Current Status: According to this table, the lodge ceased work during the Revolution and is now extinct.
From Launching the Craft: The Beginnings of Freemasonry in North Carolina, by Thomas C. Parramore, 1975, Pages 9-11:
"On December 10, 1764, the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts entered upon its accounts the receipt of two pounds, sixteen shillings from a lodge in Pitt County, North Carolina in payment for its constitution. This lodge, then, the thirtieth to receive authorization from the Massachusetts body, was chartered at some time prior to December, 1764, probably within a few weeks prior to the receipt of the payment in Boston. The organization of the lodge in Pitt County proved, however, to be a slow process and it was not until June 24, 1767 that it held its initial meeting. (see below) A report of this meeting, together with a list of twenty-four officers and members, was forwarded to Boston later in the summer and duly entered in the proceedings of the Grand Lodge. Perhaps under the impression that he was dealing with the only lodge yet established in North Carolina - certainly the only one to have applied for recognition in Massachusetts - Grand Master Henry Price on December 30, 1767 issued a deputation appointing Thomas Cooper, who was Worshipful Master of the Pitt County Lodge, as "Deputy Grand Master of North Carolina." (see below) Since all previous deputations from England had been to South Carolinians authorized to preside over Masonic affairs in both of the Carolinas, Thomas Cooper's was the earliest issued for North Carolina alone. There is no record, however, of his having exercised the powers thus conferred upon him and no new lodges are known to have been created in North Carolina between 1767 and the beginning of Joseph Montfort's tenure as Provincial Grand Master in 1771.
"The First Lodge of Pitt County" is said to have held its meetings at the inn of Colonel Shadrack Allen, a native of Crown Point, New York, whose place was located about fifteen miles southeast of what is now Greenville and on the public road between Halifax and New Bern. It was the same inn at which George Washington would stay on his Southern Tour in 1791.
This account also includes a description of Crown Point Lodge sometime in 1764, which included some of the same Brethren in the list from Massachusetts, as well as other early bodies, though it notes that authority for lodges derived from a number of different sources in that period.
- Thomas Cooper, 1764-1767
OFFICER AND MEMBER LIST, SEPTEMBER 1767
From Proceedings, Page I-116:
To Mr. ABRAHAM SAVAGE, Grand Secretary, Boston.
To Mr. Abraham Savage Grand Secretary of all the Lodges of Free and Accepted Masons in North America, and of the Grand Lodge in Boston. —
We the Brethren of the First Lodge in Pitt County North Carolina, send the following List of Officers Elected at the Annual Feast of St. John's, from the Time of our first Meeting, to June 24th 1767. and of Members who sign'd the Bye Laws, under the Sanction of a Warrant Granted by the Right Worshipful Jeremy Gridley Esq., Grand Master of North America. — Vizt:'
- Mr. Thomas Cooper, Master &c.
- Mr. Peter Blinn, Esq., Col. John Simpson, Wardens.
- Capt Richard Evans, Esq., Treasr.
- James Hall, Esqr., Secy.
- Mr. Thomas Hardy, Mr. James Hill, Stewards pro-temp.
- Mr. Richard Richardson, Tyler.
- Docr. William Pratt
- Mr. John Lesslie
- Mr. Peter Richardson
- Mr. Robert Newell
- Mr. William Brown
- Mr. John Barber.
- Mr. Robert Bignell
- Mr. Lenington Lockhart
- Mr. George Miller
- Capt. Nathaniel Blinn
- Mr. James Glasgow
- Mr. Peter Johnson
- Mr. Bolen Hall
- Mr. William Kelley
- Mr. George Evans
- Mr. William McClellen
- Col. Thomas Hall
For any further Particulars, we shall refer you to the Worshipful Mr. Thomas Cooper, Master, who will Personally deliver this, and Hope he will give such Satisfaction, as shall be required: Resting assured of the above, We remain
Your most Sincere and Affectionate Brothers.
James Hall, Secretr., The First Lodge, in Pitt County North Carolina.
GRAND MASTER PRICE'S DEPUTATION, DECEMBER 1767
From Proceedings, Page I-129:
TO ALL AND EVERY OUR RlGHT WORSHIPFUL AND LOVING BRETHREN, Free and Accepted Masons, now residing or that may hereafter Reside in the Province of North Carolina. We, HENRY PRICE Esq., Grand Master of the Ancient and Honourable Society of Free and Accepted Masons, of all such Places in North America, where no other Grand Master is appointed, SEND GREETING, —
Whereas our Rt. Worshipful and Loving Brother, Mr. Thomas Cooper of Pitt County in the Province aforesaid, Merchant, obtained of the late Right Worshipful JEREMY GRIDLEY Esqr., Grand Master of Masons in North America, our most Worthy Predecessor, a Deputation to be Master of a Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons in Pitt County aforesaid, and
Whereas our said Brother Cooper, did, (since he obtained the said Deputation) represent to our said Predecessor, that by reason of the great Distance of some of the Brethren's abode, from the Place of their usual Assembling in Pitt County aforesaid, their Attendance on Lodges was very inconvenient and troublesome to those Members, and the business of Masonry could not be carried on with that Regularity and Certainty that it otherwise would.
For the remedy of those inconveniences, Now THEREFORE KNOW YE, That by Virtue of the Power and Authority committed to us, by the Right Honorable and Right Worshipful ANTHONY, Lord Viscount MONTAGUE, Grand Master of Masons, Do hereby Nominate, Appoint, and Authorise, our said Right Worshipful Brother THOMAS COOPER to be our Deputy Grand Master within the Province of North Carolina aforesaid, and do Impower him to Congregate all the Brethren, that at present reside (or may hereafter Reside) in said Province, into one or more Lodges as he may think fit, and in such Place or Places within the' same, as shall most redound to the general benefit of Masonry: He taking special Care that Masters Wardens and all other proper Officers to a Lodge appertaining be duly chosen, at their next Meeting preceding the Feasts of St. John the Baptist, or St. John the Evangelist, or both as shall be most convenient, and so on Annually.
Also that no Person be admitted into any Lodge within this Deputation at any Time, but regular made Masons: And that all, and every the Regulations contain'd in the Printed Book of Constitutions, (except so far as they have been altered by the Grand Lodge in London) be kept and observed; with such other Instructions as may be transmitted by us or our Successors. That an Account in Writing be Annually sent to Us, our Successors or our Deputy's, of the Names of the Members of the Lodge or Lodges, and their place of abode, with the Days and Places of their Meeting, with any other Things that may be for the benefit of Masonry in those Parts; and that the Feasts of St. John the Baptist, or St. John the Evangelist, be kept Yearly, and Dine together on those Days, or as near them as may be.
That for each Lodge Constituted by him, he is to Remit to the Grand Secretary in this Place, three Guineas and one half, two of which is for Registering them in London, and the rest for the general Fund of Charity, and Registering them here. Lastly, a charitable Fund must be established, for the Relief of Poor distress'd Brothers in those Parts, in such manner as is practiced elsewhere by Regular Lodges.
Given under Our HAND and the SEAL of MASONRY at BOSTON in NEW ENGLAND the thirtieth Day of December, Anno Domini, One Thousand, Seven hundred and Sixty Seven, and of Masonry, Five Thousand, Seven hundred and Sixty Seven. WITNESS the Deputy Grand Master and Grand Wardens, whose Names are hereunto Subscribed.
By the Grand Master's Command:
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