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Location: Roslindale; Westwood (1995)

Chartered By: Samuel Wells

Charter Date: 12/10/1890 1890-132

Precedence Date: 03/08/1890

Current Status: Active


  • Henry W. Bowen, 1890, 1891
  • Allen M. Innis, 1892, 1893
  • Harrison Dunham, 1894
  • William H. Bowdlear, 1895, 1896
  • Daniel Dewar, 1897, 1898
  • John W. Bosworth, 1899, 1900
  • Benjamin F. Jerome, 1901
  • Edward S. Fogerty, 1902, 1903
  • John Daniel, 1904, 1905
  • E. Ernest Murry, 1906, 1907
  • John H. Marks, 1908, 1909
  • George L. Dimock, 1910
  • George W. Harring, 1911, 1912
  • John F. Carver, 1913; PDDGM Mem
  • Elmer W. Stevens, 1914, 1915
  • Stephen A. Cummings, 1916, 1917
  • John A. Johnson, 1918, 1919
  • Walter G. Richardson, 1920, 1921
  • Earle N. Crysler, 1922
  • Edward W. Whittemore, 1923
  • Frederick H. Doell, 1924
  • Charles P. Raymond, 1925
  • Henry Doell, 1926
  • Leon V. Stone, 1927; PDDGM N
  • Austin F. Oberacker, 1928
  • George N. Graves, 1929
  • Clayton L. Havey, 1930
  • Lloyd H. Chellman, 1931
  • Stanley B. Vandersall, 1932; PDDGM N
  • Thomas Ward, 1933
  • Owen E. Folsom, 1934
  • Reginald W. Edmonds, 1935
  • Sheridan E. Thorup, 1936
  • Arthur O. Eilerston, 1937
  • J. Leonard Smith, 1938
  • Norman A. MacLeod, 1939
  • Frank G. Augusta, 1940
  • Wilfred L. Penney, 1941
  • George W. Russell, 1942; PDDGM N
  • Phillip Richenburg, 1943
  • Robert L. Schneider, 1944
  • Arthur T. Milligan, 1945
  • Richard J. Sutton, 1946
  • Marcus P. Pinkham, 1947
  • Harold C. Bean, 1948
  • Frank W. Aston, 1949
  • Wesley J. Rowe, 1950
  • Francis A. Troy, 1951; PDDGM N
  • Allen H. Aston, 1952
  • James C. Thorp, 1953
  • Ray A. Harmon, 1954
  • Daniel J. Savage, 1955
  • Harvey M. Tompkins, 1956
  • Alexander R. MacLeod, 1957; PDDGM N
  • John L. Olsen, Jr., 1958
  • Harold L. Travis, 1959
  • Frederick W. Johnson, 1960
  • Lawton C. Ganong, 1961
  • Harry E. Nobel, 1962
  • Donald A. MacKinnon, 1963
  • Earl W. Folsom, 1964
  • Roger R. Harmon, 1965
  • Gerald Harting, 1966
  • Donald A. MacKinnon, 1967
  • T. Preston Crumbley, 1968
  • A. Roderick MacLeod, Jr., 1969
  • Karl H. A. Schmatzler, 1970
  • Richard R. Ray, 1971; PDDGM SN
  • John R. Hunter, 1972
  • Kenneth H. Fogerty, 1973
  • Michael Pecoraro, 1974; PDDGM N
  • LeRoy W. Niles, 1975
  • John H. Gillis, 1976
  • Frank M. Gray, 1977
  • Charles R. Lovejoy, 1978
  • John E. Lydstone, Jr., 1979
  • John E. Lydstone, III, 1980
  • Stanley C. Gaw, 1981, 1982, 1985, 2004, 2005, 2013, 2014; PDDGM(7th Dist.)
  • John E. Lydstone, Jr., 1983
  • Harry E. Nobel, 1984
  • Lewis M. Smolin, 1986
  • Frank G. Augusta, 1987
  • James M. Callihan, 1988
  • Douglas M. Brown, 1989
  • Willard B. Cookson, 1990; PDDGM N
  • Bruce A. Berry, 1991, 1992, 1993
  • Bruce T. Marshall, 1994, 1995, 2006; PDDGM
  • Henry A. Woolf, 1996, 1997
  • Stephen P. Cole, 1998, 1999
  • Richard H. Ryder, 2000, 2001
  • Wilfred M. Cote, 2002, 2003
  • Simon Berbara, 2007, 2008
  • Souhail Berbara, 2009, 2010, 2011
  • David G. Berry, 2012
  • Elias Semaan, 2015, 2016
  • Stephen Sears, 2017, 2018
  • Elias Semaan, 2019, 2020, 2021


  • Petition for Dispensation: 1890
  • Petition for Charter: 1890 (In Grand Master's address: note that the lodge had to obtain dispensation from the other 29 lodges in Boston in order to proceed.)


  • 1915 (25th Anniversary, 04/20/1915; see history below)
  • 1941 (50th Anniversary)
  • 1990 (Centenary)



1901 1911 1913 1916 1918 1920 1922 1923 1926 1930 1938 1939 1944 1945 1948 1950 1952 1958 1962 1964 1967 1974 1983 1985 2009 2011


  • 1915 (25th Anniversary History; not in Proceedings; see below)
  • 1941 (50th Anniversary History, 1941-74; see below)
  • 1982 (History 1936-1982, 1982-134; see below)


Henry Bowen, First Master of Prospect Lodge

From the Prospect Lodge 25th Anniversary Booklet; address by Bro. J. Henry Smith, April 20, 1915:

The celebration this evening of the twenty-fifth anniversary of Freemasonry in Roslindale is being fittingly observed by friendiy intercourse as we meet around the festive board, but it seems expedient for the berrefit of all interested that a historical sketch should have a place in the joyouiness of the occasion, so the Secretary, upon the invitation of Worshipful Stevens, has prepared such, as concisely as possible, so that:it may not tire you or mar the anticipated delight of the evening.

Prospect Lodge! It appears to me, when the pioneer brothers selected this name, they must have had in mind one meaning of the word, viz., "Expectation." Recognizing the need of a lodge, and peering into the future, they had great expectation, and courage born of their convictions. Shakespeare says "To climb steep hills requires slow pace at first." This is a generally accepted truism, but I think you will agree at the conclusion of this reading that their pace was soon augtnented, and these expectations have been more than realized in the twenty-five years of existence.

When application was made for Grand Lodge dispensation, doubts were expressed as to the success of a lodge in Roslindale, and some asserted that it would die a natural death. However, a few good men, true master workmen, thought differently, and with heroic determination set out on their arduous undertaking with a will which knows no defeat, and made a reputation for doing things which has been one of the characteristics of Prospect all these years.

Under date of December 26, 1889, a circular letter, reading as follows, was sent to known craftsmen in the district:

"Brother: It is desired to form a Lodge of F. and A. M. in Roslindale, that in harmony with ancient usages we may meet and know each other. please be at Knights of Honor Hall, Washington Street, Roslindale, Monday, December 30, 1889, at eight o'clock P.M., to sign the request for a charter and arrange for meeting, etc. May you be fervent and zealous, and if you know a brother in the vicinity with cautious freedom ask, him to come with you. (Signed) Harrison Dunham."

Pursuant of this notice, a meeting was held December 30, 1889, when Wor. Bro. H. W. Bowen was chosen chairman, and Brother Dunham secfetary. On motiorr o{ Bro. W. H. Bowdlear it was voted. unanimously that all present sign petition to Grand Lodge for dispensation to hold iodge in Roslindale, and on motion of Brother Dunham the lodge was named, "Prospect."

On motlon, Wor. Bro. Bowen was named Master; Bro. A. M. Innis, S. W.; Bro. W. H. Glover, J. W. All present signed the petition, as follows: Henry W. Bowen, Allen M. Innis, W. H. Glover, Harrison Dunham, W. H. Bowdlear, Theodore Glover, W. R. Hudson, Daniel Dewar, Matthew H. Fossett, Benjamin F. Coran; and at a subsequent neeting, George Bleiler, Jr., George S. West, Edw. S. Fogerty, W. W, Prance, L. S. Price, George Cherry, Frederick Schneider, Thomas Moser, Geo. Jepson, John W. Bosworth, John E. Blakemore - twenty-one in all. Twenty-nine llodges and the following District Deputies- F. T. Dwinell, First District; A. A. Osgood, Second District; S. A. Bolster, Fourth Distrlct - signed their approval of granting dispensation.

Preliminary meetings, beginning February 1, 1890, were held in Association Hall, and on March 10 the first regular Communication was held, with Wor. Bro. H. W. Bowen in the chair, who read the dispensation granted by the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts, signed. by Most Wor. Samuel Wells, Grand Master, and attested by Right Wor. Sereno D. Nickerson, Rec. Grand Secretary, empowering them to work, and at about eight o'clock P.M. Prospect Lodge was opened on the third degree, and the second Monday of each month was appointed for regular Communication. The orgnization was as follows: Wor. Bro. H, W. Bowen, Master; Bro. A. M. Innis, Senior Warden; Bro, W. H. Glover, Junior Warden; Bro. Geo. Jepson, Treasurer; Bro. Harrison Dunham, Secretary; Bro.Theo. Glover, Chaplain; Bro. Geo. Bleiler, Jr,, Marshal; Bro, W. H. Bowdlear, Senior Deacon; Bro. Daniel Dewar, Juniot Deacon; Bro. Geo. S. West, $enior Steward; Bro. B, F. Coran, Junior Steward; Bro. M. H. Fossett, Inside Sentinel; Bro. W. R. Hudson, Tyler. Nineteen of the petitioners were enrolled as charter members. Bro. Coran made presentation of baton and gavel; Bro. Bleiler, trowel; Bro. Hudson, square; Bro. Glover, compasses, Tyler's sword and belt; Bro. Dunham, desk and Bible; Wor. W. F. Spear, implements of first degree. Right Wor. Bro. Osgood and Wor. Bro. Spear, who were untiring in their efforts to secure the dispensation, were present.

On April 14, 1890, the second Communication was held. Aprons, clothing and. books were presented by St. Andrew's Lodge, with the request that no thanks be tendered. Harry W. Davis and Horace Bacon, two worthy citizens, were elected to receive the degrees, and were regularly initiated Entered Apprentices in due and ancient form. On May 12 they were passed to the degree of Fellow Craft, and on June 9 were raised to the sublime degree of Master Mason. From this time scores of worthy applicants for the degrees have beem accepted and admitted.

January 12, 1891, Most Wor. Grand Master Samuel Wells, with the following as his suite, Right Wor. Benjamin A. Gould as Deputy G. M., Right Wor. Henry G. Fay as S. G. W., Right Wor. W. H. H. Soule as Jr, G. W., W. W. Parkman, P. G. M., Right Wor. John Carr, G, Treas., Rt. Wor. Sereno D. Nickerson, Rec. Grand Sec., Right Wor. A. A. Osgood, D. D. G. M. of Second Masonic Dist., Right Wor. Daniel S. Crandon, D. D. G. M. of Third Masonic Dist., Right Wor. Solomon A. Bolster, D. D. G. M. of Fourth Masonic Dist., Rev. Wor. Charles A. Skinner, Chaplain, and other Grand Officers, constituted the brethren named in the Charter into a regular lodge in due and ancient form and with due ceremories. Charter being read. by the Rec. Grand Secretary, Most Wor. Grand Master Wells installed Wor. Bro. Bowen as Master, and delivered to him the Charter of the Lodge. The Lodge started on its mission with nineteen charter members.

From time to time the Lodge has recognized their sacrifice of time and money for the cause, and has shown its appreciation and esteem by electing them to Honorary Membership. All now living are on that roll.

There have been initiated, passed, and raised in the lodge during the twenty-five years, 322; admitted from other lodges, 52. There have been demitted 26; death has taken from the roll 37, and 14 have been dropped.. The total membership at present is 315.

It is with regret we have to record the work of the reaper. Among the members who have been called to lay down the work of this life are our beloved Past Masters Wor. H. W. Bowen, Wor. E. S. Fogerty and Wor. Harrison Dunham. There is a consolation that the better and immortal part survives the grave. Cicero puts it in these words: "That last day does not bring extinction to us, but change of place," which may be fittingly used in this connection.

In deeds of charity in the broadest sense Prospect Lodge has not been backward, wlthout publicity relieving emergent needs and assistlng over the rough places in life, having in mind that the greatest of these is Charity,. abiding as it does forever. Pope expresses it beautifully in these words:

"In faith and hope the world will disagree,
But all mankind's concern is 'Charity.'"

Freemasonry ls not a religious sect, but is so interwoven with religion that it demancls from its votaries worship of the Infinite Being, our God, the Great Architect o{ the universe. The evidence of Prospect's loyalty in this direction comes from the fact that at least twice a year we take advantage of our privilege and gather together in a public manner for worship in one or the other of the Protestant churches in the community. For chivalry Prospect is in the front rank, he members having profound respect for womanly dignity, particularly that exemplified by our sisters of the Eastern Star.

Most Wor. M. M. Johnson, Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts, has recognized the caliber of our membership, as represented in the individuality of Right Wor. Bro. John F. Carver, by appointing him District Deputy Grand Master for the twenty-fifth Masonic District, 1915-16.


Great expectations! Remarkable success ! .And may I fittingly add, in the words of the immortal Longfellow:

"Let us, then, be up and doing,
With a heart for any fate;
Still achieving, still pursuing,
Learn to labor and to wait."



From Proceedings, Page 1941-74; History by R.W. and Rev. Stanley B. Vandersall N, P.D.D.G.M.

What Shakespeare calls "the noiseless and inaudible foot of time" is with us tonight. Fifty years have passed since a company of faithful, warm-hearted, and exultant Masons gathered together for the constitution of Prospect Lodge. The evening of their celebration was January 12, 1891, but that momentous occasion did not come into being without much preliminary effort and activity. There had passed nearly a full year under dispensation, and months even ahead of that for informal meetings, investigation, and securing the consent of other Lodges.

In preparing these early historical details, the present writer has had access to a small book which bears the title, "Record of Meeting for the Formation of a Masonic Lodge at Roslindale", the official secretarial record, and, what is most important, an excellent historical address delivered at the twenty-fifth anniversary of Prospect Lodge, and held in printed form in the present Secretary's records. From ttrese sources it becomes evident that the first date mentioned in these annals is the day after Christmas, 1889. From then events moved rapidly, with sufficient progress made to provide for the institution of the Lodge by dispensation of the Grand Lodge on March 8, 1890, and its organization under this dispensation two days later, March 10, 1890.

In those days, which now seem so distant, Benjamin Harrison was the President of the United States, William McKinley was a member of Congress, and soon to be Governor of Ohio. The interests of the United States were almost entirely internal. The turning point-the Spanish-American War-which made our country a world power, was still a number of years in the future. Pioneering in the Midwest and in the Far West was a stirring reality. A number of western teritories had not yet come to the status of statehood, the western railroads were still in the processes of preliminary expansion, and the exploits of Indian fighters were still a matter of conversation and current record.

Hereabouts, however, there was no particular pioneering. The churches were well established, and education had been fostered through many, many years. Masonry, particulady in the Jurisdiction of Massachusetts, was in a strong position, and had many pages of glorious history behind it. Was it not natural, then, that Brethren of the Craft living in Roslindale, and somewhat detached from the larger city nearby, should nourish a common desire to have a new Lodge of Masons near to their homes? Eliot Lodge was flourishing in Jamaica Plain, but that was a considerable distance away. First one and then another proposed that there be an attempt to establish a new and a local Lodge in Roslindale.

Was it then, under the influence of goodwill at Christmas time, that the following letter was sent to known Craftsmen in the district:

"Brother: It is desired to form a Lodge of F. and A. M. in Roslindale, that in harmony with ancient usages we may meet and know each other. Please be at Knights of Honor Hall, Washington Street, Roslindale, Monday, December 30, 1889, at 8 p.m., to sign the request for a charter and arrange for meetings, etc. May you be fervent and zealous, and if you know a Brother in the vicinity, with cautious freedom ask him to come with you. I am, yours fraternally, (signed) Harrison Dunham."

At this first meeting, held December 30, 1889, Wor. Bro. Henry W. Bowen was chosen Chairman, and Bro. Dunham, Secretary. It was voted unanimously that all present sign a petition to the Grand Lodge for dispensation to hold a Lodge in Roslindale. With what emotion the ten persons present must have signed this petition! Eleven others added their names Iater. What were the thoughts in the mind of Bro. Harrison Dunham when he moved that the Lodge be called "Prospect Lodge"? Did he have in mind that this was to be a Lodge of vision, of looking forward, of claiming points of vantage in coming years?

Among the important matters for early consideration was the one which had to do with a hall in which the Lodge should meet. These sentences, from the minutes of the meeting held on January 25, 1890, are interesting and enlightening:

"After some conversation about hiring a hall for meetings, on motion of Bro. William H. Glover, it was voted to examine Association Hall on South Street, and all the brethren present proceeded to the said hall. On examination of Association Hall, on motion of Bro. William H. Glover, it was voted to hire the hall for the ensuing year, and to choose a committee to arrange said hiring. Bros. Bowen, William H. Glover and Dunham were duly chosen said committee, to report at the next meeting."

Then, from the meeting of February 1, one week later:

"The committee appointed at the last meeting reported that the hall could be had, all furnished, for $200.00 per year. The report was by vote accepted. After informal talk about the arrangements for the Lodge and examination of the hall, the meeting adjourned."

Thus were important and far-reaching decisions handled in those distant days. An account from the West Roxbury Gazette contained these further words:

"Association Hall has been repainted, frescoed, and refitted with two new ante-rooms, and will be known hereafter as Masonic Hall . . . Bro. Coron presented the Lodge with a gavel and baton; Bro. Bleiler, a trowel; Bro. Hudson, a square; Bro. Glover, compasses and tyler sword and belt; Bro. Dunham, a desk and Bible; and William F. Spear of Eliot Lodge gave the implements of the first degree."

Thus it came about that all these activities worked together for good. If there were obstacles, they do not appear in the record. Twenty-nine Lodges signed their approval of granting the dispensation. The Grand Lodge did its part, and on March 10, with Wor. Bro. H. W. Bowen in the chair, the dispensation granted by the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts, signed by Most Wor. Samuel Wells, Grand Master, and attested by Rt. Wor. Sereno D. Nickerson, Recording Grand Secretary, was read and the Lodge was ready to open.

The organization was as follows: Wor. Bro. Henry W. Bowen, Master; Bro. A. M. Innis, Senior Warden; Bro. W. H. Glover, Junior Warden; Bro. George Jepson, Treasurer; Bro. Harrison Dunham, Secretary; Bro. Theodore Glover, Chaplain; Bro. George Bleiler, Jr., Marshal; Bro. W. H. Bowdlear, Senior Deacon; Bro. Daniel Dewar, Junior Deacon; Bro. George S. West, Senior Steward; Bro. B. F. Coron, Junior Steward; Bro. M. H. Fossett, Inside Sentinel; Bro. W. R. Hudson, Tyler. Nineteen of the petitioners were enrolled as charter members. Thus the Lodge began its year of dispensation.

The night of January 12, 1891, which marked the constitution of the Lodge with all the new and ancient form, was an outstanding occasion. The Most Wor. Grand Master, Samuel Wells, was present, with a large suite of officers. The Grand Secretary read the charter. The Grand Master installed Wor. Bro. Bowen as Ilaster, and delivered to him the charter of the Lodge.

After the first twenty-five years, the report was given that there had been initiated, passed, and raised in the Lodge 322 persons; admitted from other Lodges, 52. There had been dimitted, 26; 37 had died; and 14 had been dropped. The membership stood, at that halfway point, at 315. The activi- des of the Lodge in the second twenty-five years have been such that the statistical figures are now as follows: From the beginning, there have been initiated, passed, and raised, 1100; admitted from other Lodges, 108; dimitted, 189; died, 235; dropped, 221. The present membership is 538. In common with other Lodges, Prospect saw a rapid increase in its members in the years following the World War. Its peak of membership was reached in 1930, when 799 were reported by the Secretary. ln rise and decline of membership, Prospect has been fairly typical of other Massachusetts Lodges.

We turn again to pay our respects to those early Brethren who were our Masonic forebears in Prospect Lodge. Eight of the charter members were alive at the end of the first twenty-five years. All, have passed to their reward rlow, the last being Bro. George Bleiler, Jr., who died on February 13, 1935. There is not opportunity to extol them all, but two or three should be mentioned. Wor. Daniel Dewar was Master in 1897 and 1898. Later he served as Treasurer of the Lodge for twenty years, from 1904 to 1924, and, was the proud recipient of the Henry Price Medal in November, 1925.

Allen M. Innis was Master in 1892 and 1893; with remarkable Masonic loyalty Bro. Innis maintained his activities through all the years until shortly before his death on February 13,1932. His service for Prospect Lodge during more than forty years has no rival. Even in his later years he was not only in attendance at practically every meeting, but he was nearly always called upon by the Master to fill some station of importance. His ritual work suffered not at all with advancing years. In November, 1925, he received, the Henry Price Medal, and he also wore with distinction a Veteran's Medal. The name of Allen Innis is still fragrant, even among the younger men of the Lodge.

The occasion of greatest sentimental moment) in the estimate of the writer, was the meeting held in March, 1932. A few weeks before, Wor. Bro. Innis had passed away, and was buried with Masonic dignity, most of the living Past Masters serving as ofFcers in the funeral communication. At this March meeting, the presiding Master asked the Brethren to rise in grateful tribute to their departed friend and Brother. The one remaining charter member of the Lodge was present - George Bleiler, Jr. at his own request and at the direction of the Master, he was conducted by the Marshal to the altar. There he bowed and prayed to God in thankfulness for the friends of the past, of whom he was now the sole survivor. Thus was transmitted from past to present the symbolic spirit of Prospect Lodge.

Outstanding in the history of^ the past twenty-five years was that great occasion when the Lodge realized a long-standing ambition-the building and occupancy of Masonic Temple in Roslindale. Two previous homes had been temporarily used - Association Hall on South Street, and Masonic Hall on Poplar Street. This beautiful and effective temple was dedicated on April 24, 1922. By that time a second Lodge had been organized- West Roxbury - and by the joint efforts of the two Lodges and their members, the Masonic Building Association was formed. The records of the dedication service show that more than four hundred Brethren were present, and enjoyed the festivities. The following quotation from the minutes of that meeting is timely:

"The Marshal presented Rt. Wor. Bro. Dobson, Grand Marshal of the Grand Lodge, who announced that the Grand Master and officers and members of the Grand Lodge were in an edjoining apartment and ready to dedicate the new apartments. Wor. Bro. Crysler appointed as a committee to escort the Grand Master and his suite to the Lodge-room, Wor. Bro. Innis as Chairman, the Past Masters of Prospect Lodge, Wor. Bro. Spear, and Bro. J. M. Crysler, Wor. Bros. McClellan, Jillson, Macy, Bedford, and Bro. Lewis S. Breed.

"Following the introduction of Most Wor. Arthur D. Prince, Grand Master of Masons in Massachusetts; by Wor. Bro. Innis, Wor. Bro. Crysler in a very pleasing and appropriate manner welcomed the distinguished guest and his suite. 'The Grand Officers assumed the various stations in the Lodge, and puoceeded with the dedication ceremony) which was done in such an impressive manner that it will long be remembered by the Brethren present. At the conclusion of this ceremony, the Grand Master addressed the Brethren and complimented them me ttreir achievements."

A second outstanding event in recent years was the celebration connected with the 500th Regular Communication of the lodge held on January 13, 1936. The Most Worshipful Grand Master, Claude L. Allen, was present with a suite of distinguished Masons. The presiding Master, Wor. Sheridan J. Thorup, took charge of the sealing of a chest containing various items, of interest in connection with the occasion, that chest to be opened at the 1000th Communication of Prospect Lodge.

Prispect Lodge has enjoyed through the five decades of its history a splendid standing in the community. It.has maintained a friendly relationship to the churches, and has always urged its members to enjoy the benefits of church fellowship. It has been conspicuous for its benevolent spirit and its participation in many worthy causes - social, civic, educational, religious. In the World War, 1917-1918, it contributed its loyal support in every possible way. In Masonic.matters it has had a place of prominence in the district of which it is a part and in the Grand Lodge. Many times its members and officers have received the confidence of the Grand Lodge and other Masonic bodies by being appointed and elected to positions of trust and honor. Its flrst fifty years have set worthy standards in the conduct, ability, and spirit of the Brethren of the Lodge. It has sought to do well its part in general Masonic life and tradition, removing not the ancient landmarks which the fathers have set. If these standards can remain, the future is secure.

May God grant that coming years may see an increase in what is most important, as Prospect Lodge indeed points the way to better things!


At this Special Communication of Grand Lodge, reported on Page 1982-132, Grand Master Berquist and the Grand Lodge visited Prospect Lodge. The time capsule sealed on January 13, 1936 was opened, and the letter from Wor. Sheridan J. Thorup was read. Wor. Bro. Thorup was also the author of the 1936-1982 history, reproduced in the Proceedings.

Many things have happened in Prospect Lodge since January 13, 1936 when Most Wor. Claude L. Allen, Grand Master of Masons in Massachusetts closed Prospect Lodge in Ample form on the occasion of our 500th regular communication.

Wor. Sheridan J. Thorup was the presiding Master at that time and had gone to great length to make it one of the highlights of that decade. Several articles of great significance to Prospect Lodge were sealed in a wooden box, not to be opened until our l000th regular communication. This box is passed on from Master to Master at the time of his installation, just as the charter and other properties are placed in his hands for safe-keeping by the presiding Master.

At the 523rd regular communication a reception was paid to R. W. Stanley B. Vandersall, our third past Master in 47 years to have been appointed to DDGM. R.W. Vandersall was presented a gavel made of wood taken from the historical washington Elm in cambridge by Wor. J. Leonard Smith. Bro. Harry Warren Davis was presented the first 50 year Veterans' Medal in our lodge by Most Wor. Albert A. Schaefer, Grand Master of Masons in Massachusetts on his Official visit to our lodge on April14, 1941 during Wor. Wilfred L. Penny's term as Master. This meeting had the largest attendance of any, as far as I could determine. 175 members, 65 visitors and 12 Grand Officers for a total of 252. The next largest attendance was on December 10, 1951 when we entertained 212 (107 members and 105 visitors.) Quite a contrast to the 35 or 40 at our present meetings.

Our own R.W. George W. Russell was appointed DDGM for the South Boston 4th Masonic District for the years 1945-1946. At our November meeting in 1949 Prospect officers were decked out in new regalia, this being the first new set since being Constituted in 1891, thanks to the efforts of our Tyler, Bro. Jonathon Wilson. At the quarterly communication of Grand Lodge in September 1950 our own R.W. Leon V. Stone received the Joseph Warren Medal, an honor well merited by a very devoted Mason, our secretary for many years.

Prospect Lodge suffered a tremendous loss on June 29, 1952 when after attending Masonic Church Services at The Cathedral of the Pines in Rindge, N.H., our Tyler for 32 years, Jonathon Wilson, was killed !n an automobile accident on his way home.

Another honor was conferred on our lodge with the appointment of R.W. Francis A. Troy as DDGM for the South Boston 4th Masonic District for the years 1955-1956. Between the annual meeting in 1945 and February 8, 1960. Prospect Lodge awarded 242 life memberships as well as presenting 33 Fifty year Veterans' Medals.

R.W. Alexander R. McLeod was appointed DDGM for the years 1963-1964. Prospect received a very generous gift from the Estate of Bro. Porter D. Hellewell in the year 1964.

Between 1960 and 1971 thirty prospectors were made life members and twenty-six members were presented Fifty-year Veterans Medals.

At the installation ceremony of Wor. Alexander R. McLeod Jr. in 1968 another set of new regalia was presented to the Lodge by his father, R.W. Alexander R. McLeod.

Between our 500th and 1000th regular communications we have had the devoted services of seven dedicated Past Masters who have served as Secretary of Prospect, they are Wor. Elmer W. Stevens, R. W. Leon V. Stone, Wor. Daniel J. Savage, Wor. Robert L. Schneider, RW. Francis A. Troy, Wor. Lawton C. Ganong and our present secretary, Wor. John E. Lydstone III. We have also had two Masters who have served for two years in the East, Wor. Donald A. McKinnon who served in 1963 and again in 1967, and Wor. Stanley C. Gaw who served in 1981 and 1982. What dedication!

Between 1971 and 1975 sixteen members of our lodge were the recipients of the Fifty-year Veterans Medal and on February 11, 1974 Wor. Wesley Rowe received the Joseph Warren Medal. At the quarterly communication of Grand Lodge in December 1974 R.W. Richard R. Ray was appointed DDGM for the South Boston 4th Masonic District.

On February 14, 1971 R.W. Alexander R. McLeod was presented the Joseph Warren Medal by R.W. Al Sheafe and R.W. Richard R. Ray and on January 12, 1981 Wor. Frank G. Augusta was also presented the Joseph Warren Medal by R.W. Harry Davis and his son, Bro. Frank G. Augusta Jr. During this period there were thirteen Fifty-year Veterans Medals presented to our members.

In closing I can only say that although the membership in Prospect t odge has fallen from a high of 800 plus to a low of 257, we are still standing tall. As the old saying goes, "Although we're small in number we're the fairest in the realm". My sincere thanks to all those brothers who have helped in any way to gather all the statistics herein noted.


Monday, January 13, 1936.

To The Master of Prospect Lodge on the Occasion of its One Thousandth Regular Communication.

Worshipful Sir:


Unless my calculations are wrong, or unless the by-laws of Prospect Lodge have been changed, or unless some ambitious Master has held regular meetings in the month of July or August, this letter should greet you on June 8, 1981.

Forty five and a half years will have passed since the Five Hundredth Regular Communication of Prospect Lodge was held. In this period you have learned the answers to the problems confronting us today.

You will know the answer of whether or not the present conflict between ltaly and Ethiopia resulted in a world war. To us this seems possible, having witnessed a World War only nineteen years ago, and a war which was started on what seems to us a much smaller provocation than the present Italian and Ethiopian conflict.

You will also know whether or not the world has sat back and let Japan gobble up China, and extend her possessions eastward to Australia and the Philippine Islands as is now threatened.

You will also have the answer to the present "New Deal" inaugurated by President Franklin Delano Rooswelt, and the answer also to the question of what place history will accord President Hoover for his untiring efforts to stem the depression of 1929.

Should it be your good fortune to be in the midst of an era of prosperity, let no man tell you that prosperity is here to stay, and that you will never see another depression again, or that it is impossible for conditions to be bad inthe entire world at the same time. We were told that and to our sorrow believed it. Since 1929 when prices began to tumble, we have had the worst unemployment situation the country and the world has ever witnessed. The banks throughout the entire country were closed during the famous bank holidays of 1932, and you would be amazed at the attitude and spirit of the American people during these darkest of days.

Things have happened these past few years which we thought never could happen. This country has gone off the gold standard and even reduced the gold content of the American dollar, and now thinks nothing of it. We are spending billions of dollars for all sorts of things, from raking leaves to building enormous hydroelectric plants in what is now the most remote corners of the country (a common slang expression of our day, "you're telling us", would probably be appropriate for you to use here as you, no doubt, are still paying for our "New Deal"). We, in this year of 1936, have a law whereby the farmers are paid for hogs they don't raise and the cotton they plough under. This,'we are told by the present Administration, is the way to solve the economic problems of the Nation. Although millions of people are starving, we are, nevertheless, told that over abundance of crops must be destroyed. Some of us can't understand this theory, probably the wisdom of it has since become clearer.

It now looks as if those of us who served in the World War would receive a cash bonus from the Congress which has just convened, in spite of the fact that the nation is heavily in debt. This, no doubt, is because next year is election year, and Congressmen of our day think first in terms of votes, and secondly of the welfare of the country. It is true that we have promised that this bonus will satisfy us, but I will miss my guess if we do not receive a pension in addition to this bonus before you read this letter.

We are also seriously considering the so-called Townsend Plan, whereby everyone over sixty years of age will receive $200 a month from the Government, providing they will spend it the following month. Where this money is coming from, we have not been told, but that probably is unimportant and a mere detail for future generations to worry about.

We, who are serving Prospect Lodge today, cleaily remember when Colonel Lindbergh flew alone across the Atlantic Ocean to Paris in a non-stop flight, and when the first trans Pacific air route was inaugurated. These were marvelous feats to us, but to you, it probably carries no thrill, because you, no doubt, have landing decks covering the oceanways, and planes that can stay in the air indefinitely, and means to combat the fog and other hazards.

With the beginning of the year 1936, we find a definite improvement in the business sentiment, and again the automobile industry has been the backbone of the recovery acting as a stimulant to many collateral industries, which depend on it for any degree of improvement. In your day, it might possibly be the aviation industry that will act as a support for the whole business structure.

The trend in business the past year has been more regular in comparison to the wide fluctuations in the three previous years, caused by the N.R.A. and the decided threat of inflation. Whether or no this sentiment is transformed into a definite improvement in business will depend to what extent the Government penetrates the business field. Regulation and interference have tended to retard the recovery of this country.

The beginning of this year also witnesses the start of the so-called "Federal Social Security Act", providing, among other things, "old age assistance" and "unemployment compensation". The success or failure of theseattempts to avoid a repetition of conditions existing during the years following the 1929 depression is hard to predict. It depends so much on the type of man we elect in the years to come to administer such a gigantic program. It is quite evident, however, that some solution along these lines must be found if we hope to avoid serious internal trouble.

Not since the days of John Marshall has our United States Supreme Court been called upon to decide so many important questions: questions concerning the actual existence oi this country under its present form of Government. Without doubt the present Court will have much to do in directing the future course of this nation. To date they have declared unconstitutional many of the acts ol the present Administration, for example, the N.R.A., the A.A.A., and the original Farm Loan Moratorium Act. The coming year will decide the late of many more. It is not the acts themselves which concern many of us today, but the manner in which they were forced upon us by a Congress at the instigation of a President who apparently cared little whether or no the acts were constitutional.

There is no doubt in my mind that some parts of these acts should be adopted some day, but if that result isn't obtained by an orderly procedure to amend the constitution to permit Congress to do these things, then I am afraid we are headed for serious trouble when the "ins" will always rule and the "outs" will always suffer, with no unbiased Supreme Court to whom we can appeal.

Prospect Lodge attendance has been averaging between ninety and one hundred members at each meeting. Lodges, in general, are finding it increasingly more difficult to secure the attendance they did fifteen or twenty years ago, due principally to the increasing number ofattractions on the outside, such as radios, automobiles, sports and other social activities, and also probably due to some extent to the terrific financial stress we have all been throrigh the past seven years. We, in Prospect Lodge, have been endeavoring to meet this situation by making the meetings as interesting as possible, and have tried to have some outside feature at each meeting. There seems to be a general improvement this year in all the lodges as evidenced by an increasing number of applicants.

The Masons in Massachusetts today are justly proud of the Masonic Home in Charlton and the Masonic Hospital in Shrewsbury. Both of these institutions are doing wonderful work, and I sincerely hope they have not only been continued through these forty five years, but have been enlarged to meet the increasing demands put upon them.

With my best wishes for the continued success of Prospect Lodge, I am
Fraternally and Sincerely yours,
Sheridan J. Thorup Worshipful Master


  • 1894 (Participation in dedication of the Burial Lot and Monument in Boston; 1894-85)





From Liberal Freemason, Vol. XIV, No. 4, July 1890, Page 128:

Prospect Lodge. — This is a new Lodge, working in Roslindale, Mass., under a Dispensation, granted March 8, 1890. Its meetings are held on the second Monday of each month. The third degree was worked at the June meeting on two candidates, and one petition for the degrees was received. Henry W. Bowen, W. M.; Allen M. lnnis, S. W.; Wm. H. Glover, J. W.; and Harrison Dunham, Secretary.


From New England Craftsman, Vol. X, No. 8, May 1915, Page 288:

Prospect Lodge, Roslindale, Mass., held a "Ladies' Night" in celebration of its quarter-centennial, April 20th, at the American House, Boston. About 250 were in attendance.

The arrangements were in the hands of Rt. Worshipful John F. Carver, DDGM, of the 25th Masonic District; Elmer W. Stevens, WM, and Harry W. Gilman.

There were 22 applicants for a dispensation at the start of the lodge.

Among the first officers were H. W. Bowen, WM; A. M. Innis, SW; W. H. Glover, JW; George Jepson, T, and Harrison Dunham, S. Nineteen of the petitioners signed the charter roll and eight of these are living. January 12, 1891, the lodge was constituted by Grand Master Wells. Since then Prospect Lodge has initiated 322 and 52 have been admitted by card. The membership is now 315.

Worshipful Master Elmer W. Stevens, presided at the banquet. Among the guests present was Rev. Dr. Perry Bush, who gave an address. Secretary Smith gave a historical review of the Lodge. There was also an entertainment of music and readings.


1890: District 4 (South Boston)

1911: District 25 (Hyde Park)

1927: District 4 (South Boston)

1995: District 4 (Boston)

2003: District 6


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The curator for this page is Brother Bruce Marshall. Please direct informational updates and questions to him.