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Location: Harwich

Dispensation may have been presented to Grand Master Heard sometime in 1857.

Current Status: dispensation declined, but there is no documentation on it.


A petition for dispensation was signed by a number of Brothers some time before the beginning of March 1857 to establish a lodge in Harwich. One copy of the document, bearing ten signatures, has the following inscription on the back: "At a regular meeting of Mount Horeb Lodge March 4th A. L. 5857 the within petition was acted upon and rejected. Attest, Wm. E. Ansell, Secretary." It does indicate that the District Deputy Grand Master had given his approbation, but there is no text or signature to that effect.

Another copy of the dispensation, which contains seven additional signatures and the words "and 8 or 10 others that are not at home", was likely written after this rejection, as it contains the following text: "We the undersigned being Master Mason{s} of good standing and desirous of forming a new Lodge in Harwich, for which purpose we have from time to time presented our petition to Mt. Horeb Lodge for their recommendation but they have refused to grant our request without any good reasons, thereby depriving some 25 or 30 Masons who live from 3 to 5 miles distance from Mt. Horeb Lodge the privaledges {sic} and advantages of those who live the west part of the town . . ." This document, like the previous one, is undated.

The only other information we have on this petition is another letter, unsigned and undated but clearly written by a member of the lodge, giving "Reasons which induced Mt. Horeb Lodge to object." It reads:

  • " 1st There are not a sufficient number of Masons, or of persons residing in Harwich suitable to be admitted into the institution, to support two Lodges respectably."
  • " 2nd A large proportion of the members of Mt. Horeb Lodge are mariners & are consequently absent a large portion of the time, so that with only one Lodge there are but few to officer & attending the meetings of the Lodge."
  • " 3rd Instead of having two weak & inefficient Lodges it would be better to change the locality of the present place of meeting so as to accommodate both sections of the Town - but as Mt. Horeb Lodge has been but recently established & their place fitted up at considerable expense, we hope even that will not be insisted."
  • " 4th There being no Lodge at present in the Town of Chatham one will probably be formed there which would accommodate those who now live at an inconvenient distance from Mt. Horeb Lodge."
  • " 5th We fear that the establishment of another Lodge in the small town of Harwich would produce a spirit of rivalry, in point of numbers, which would greatly endanger the welfare of the institution."


Those marked with a star (★) appear on both documents.

  • EZEKIEL ADAMS b. 1811
    • MM 1855, Mount Horeb


  • THEOPHILUS BAKER 1830-1904 ★
    • couldn't find card, but there is a Theophilus Baker 1860-1949, cranberry grower, from Harwich, his son; MM Mt. Horeb 1907
  • JOSEPH H. DOANE ?-? ★
    • MM 1855, Mount Horeb
    • couldn't find card
    • couldn't find card
  • LEWIS P. ELLIS ?-?
    • MM 1856, Mount Horeb
  • WARREN FREEMAN 1815-1894 ★
    • Charter Member, 1860 Pilgrim; suspended 1881
    • Charter Member, 1860 Pilgrim; expelled by Grand Lodge 1867
  • CHARLES JENKINS 1827-1904 ★
    • MM 1855, Mount Horeb
    • Charter Member, 1860 Pilgrim; suspended 1869
    • MM 1855, Mount Horeb
  • CALEB NICKERSON 1820-1884 ★
    • Charter Member, 1860 Pilgrim; demitted 1869
  • JOSHUA NICKERSON 1819-1891 ★
    • MM 1861, Pilgrim; demitted 1867
    • Charter Member, 1860 Pilgrim; suspended 1878
    • MM 1855, Mount Horeb
    • Charter Member, 1860 Pilgrim; suspended 1878
  • NATHANIEL ROBBINS, JR. 1822-1885
    • MM 1855, Mount Horeb; discharged 1867
  • REUBEN TRIPP, JR. 1791-1867 ★
    • "voted to be member" 1854 of Mount Horeb


Grand Master Weld

Massachusetts Lodges