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Location: Shanghai, China

Chartered By: Baalis Sanford

Charter Date: 09/14/1904 1904-104

Precedence Date: 08/11/1903


Current Status: unknown; no longer working. Originally named 'Orient'.


  • Samuel Robert Gale, 1903-1905
  • George Ernest Marshall, 1906
  • John D. Bentley, 1907
  • Walter Wood, 1908
  • Tom Newton Hugall, 1909
  • Arthur Oliver, 1910
  • Frank Jones, 1911
  • Frederick J. Wetherstone Melville, 1912
  • Samuel Hewkin, 1913
  • Carlton Roeper, 1914
  • Charles Houghton, 1915
  • Charles Powell, 1916
  • Herbert Wenmouth Strike, 1917
  • Evan Owen Thomas, 1918
  • Charles Sinclair Hepburn, 1919
  • William Frederick Dearn, 1920
  • John James Holland Dearn, 1921
  • Walter Sharp Bardarson, 1922
  • Edwin Arthur Dearn, 1923
  • Charles Kliene, 1924, 1935
  • William Ashe Skuse, 1925
  • Thurston Robert Porter, 1926
  • Thomas Henry Richardson, 1927
  • Edgar Tilden Monroe Van Bergen, 1928
  • Charles Emil Larsen, 1929
  • William Golding, 1930
  • Frederick Arthur Naylor, 1931, 1948-1951
  • Ivey Goodman Riddick, 1932
  • Calvin Edwin Horsman, 1933
  • William Davis Meredith, 1934
  • William Christian Arthur Wolnizer, 1936
  • Frank Boorman, 1937
  • Walter Lebrun, 1938
  • Leonti P. Podpakh, 1939-1942
  • IN RECESS 1943-1945
  • Gerrasime D. Chelmis, 1946, 1947
  • Marcus A. Ferras, 1952, 1953 acting


  • Petition for Dispensation: 1903 Dispensation name was "Orient"
  • Petition for Charter: 1904



1914 1924 1929 1931 1933 1936 1948 1950



The following is a transcription of a typescript history in the archives of the Samuel Crocker Lawrence Library, Boston.



  • Date of Charter: 14th September, 1904.
  • Place of Meeting: American Masonic Temple, 178 Route Dufour, Shanghai.
  • Dates of Meetings: 1st. Friday of each month, usually excepting July and August.
  • Installation Meeting: 1st. Friday in September

The early history of the Lodge with list of Masters to 1913 ia included in the previous volume, pages 193-4.

The Lodge was consecrated on 6th January, 1905, in the former Masonic Hall, No. 30 The Bund, and held its meetings there until just before the building was demolished in 1928.

Until 1912, the Installation Meeting was held in January; By-Laws were then amended and the election of officers took place in September to be followed by the Installation Meeting in October.

As with the other Lodges of the Massachusetts Constitution it had been the custom, with but few exceptions, for a Senior District Grand Lodge officer to install the Master-elect, and it has also been the custom to vote a Past Master's jewel to the retiring Master. In earlier years the Lodge voted a small cash honorarium to the Secretary, but this was discontinued and jewels were voted to the Secretary, Treasurer and the Tyler, with an additional bar for each extra year of service in special cases.

Until 1923 it was the custom for the Master to rise three times before closing the Lodge: after that year, however, the practice of one rising was adopted.

Very friendly relations were maintained with the Lodges of other Constitutions and considerable interest was evinced in their form, of ceremonial working. In February, 1913, the desire was expressed to visit Lodge Germania and witness their Third Degree Ceremony; Lodge Germania courteously invited the brethren of the Lodge to attend their meetings in March and/or April, which they did, and, in due course, Wor. Bro. Mittag and the Officers of Lodge Germania paid a return visit to Shanghai Lodge in March, 1914.

As with almost all Lodges in Shanghai, from about 1913 onwards the meetings were often very long, and it became a regular custom to call off for refreshment for ten or fifteen minutes between 10 and 11 P.M. This practice has almost disappeared, largely in favour of earlier meetings with an interval for supper.

In November, 1913, the Lodge formed a "Permanent Advisory Committee" consisting of the resident Past Masters; the By-Laws were amended about t the same time, increasing the fees.

At the Annual Meeting in October, 1915, the Treasurer reported that the Lodge funds were in healthy condition, with a better balance in hand. In December of the same year a vote was passed in favour of "some festive re-union among the members, their wives and children", but, although a committee was formed, the effort did not materialize awing to short notice and lack of support.

A complete set of new Regalia, with a new Lodge Banner, was ordered from London in July, 1917, and was received about the end of that year.

At the meeting on 1st. March, 1918, a Chaplain's jewel was presented to Wor. Bro. G. E. Marshall, a founder of the Lodge, for "long and faithful service". The Lodge was a regular contributor to the Masonic Scholarship Fund, and on 3rd. May, 1918, congratulations were extended to Wor. Bro. G. E. Marshall on the success of his son in passing the Cambridge Local Examination, Gaining Honours, and thereby winning the Masonic Scholarship for that year.

On 4th April, 1919, the brethren paid tribute to the memory of Bro. G. W. Bennett, M. C., Captain of the Yorkshire & Lancashire Regiment. After experiencing severe fighting and recovering from several wounds, Bro. G. W. Bennett died from influenza while still on active service.

In November, 1919, the suggestion was made that a full list of members should be printed on the Lodge circular; this was done for the first time in the history of the Lodge on the circular dated 26th November, 1919, but for various reasons the practice was discontinued about 1932.

A senior member of the Lodge in January, 1920 drew attention to the habit the Lodge had fallen into of opening some fifteen to thirty minutes later than stated in the summons; nothing, however, was done, and the practice continued.

On 1st April, 1921, it was suggested that the first Honorary Member of the Lodge should be Rt. Wor. Bro. Rev. John R. Hykes, D. D., District Grand Master, and he was duly elected on that date. On 15th June, 1921, however, the Worshipful Master referred to the District Grand Master's death on the previous day, and the brethren paid tribute to his memory.

At the meeting on 2nd. September, 1921, on behalf of the Lodge, the Wor. Master accepted the gift of a gavel from Bro. W. D. Kadri, one of the members.

The Installation banquet in October, 1921, was held at the Astor House Hotel, for a change.

A somewhat rare incident occurred at the meeting in January, 1922, when three candidates were initiated. The first one was admitted in due form and received light; in the next part of the ceremony it was discovered that he was in possession of M. substance, and the ceremony had to be repeated. Before the Lodge was closed the Tyler was admitted to the Lodge and tendered apologies: but the Wor. Master also apologized for remarks (possibly overheard by the candidate) which may have led up to the occurrence.

The Lodge authorized the purchase of a new Trestle Board at the Meeting on 5th May, 1922.

The Lodge was honoured by its first visit from a Grand Master of Massachusetts on 6th October, 1922, when M. Wor. Bro. Arthur D. Prince visited officially, accompanied by Rt. Wor. Bro. F. H. Hilton, Grand Sword Bearer, Acting Grand Marshal, and installed the Master-elect, Bro. W. S. Bardarson. The M. Wor. Grand Master also delivered the charges to the Master, Wardens and brethren. At the same meeting the Lodge voted to support a new "Research Lodge" which was sponsored by Wor. Bro. E. T. M. van Bergen (Master Designate), but the petition was not granted by the Grand Lodge.

After a number of candidates had been Rejected in the ballot, one of the senior Past Masters, in November, 1922, suggested modifications to minimize the regrettable practice of "black balling". Thereafter, applications were submitted for acceptance before being entered on the circular for ballot, and the number of rejections fell off considerably.

In February, 1923, the Lodge presented a set of Working Tools to the newly formed Chin Ling Lodge, Nanking, which was gratefully acknowledged.

There was no degree work on 5th September, 1924, but an instructive address on Grand Lodge activities was given by Wor.Bro. W. B. Pettus.

The May 30th affair in Nanking Road in 1925 caused the postponement of the June meeting until 28th July, 1924. After that meeting the brethren adjourned to the Plaza Hotel for dinner with the ladies of their families.

A special guest of honour at the meeting on 4th December, 1925, was H. Wor. Bro. Nat. M. Washer, Past Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Texas, who spoke at length of the "Principles of Freemasonry", and congratulated the Master, Wor. Bro. W. A. Skuse, on the excellent work.

The idea of forming special "teams" to carry out the degree work was adopted early in 1926, and added much to the smooth working.

In May,1927, Bro. Dr. Frederick Reiss (initiated in the Lodge on 27th June, 1924), present to the Lodge a very handsome Volume of the Sacred Law, which was gratefully accepted by the Worshipful Master.

A Founder's jewel was presented on 7th October, 1927, to Bro. George Wood, the Lodge's first Secretary and only Founder still on the list of active members.

Wor. Bro. A.Q. Adamson, Deputy D. G. M., reminded the brethren in January, 1928, that 1929 would be the 25th anniversary of the founding of both Shanghai and Sinim Lodges, and the District Grand Master, Rt. Wor. Bro. I. V. Gillis, suggested a joint celebration. The minutes for 1929, however, do not record any celebration in Shanghai Lodge.

The former Masonic Hall, Ho. 30 The Bund, was sold in 1926, to be vacated in 1928; several discussions occurred about new accommodation for the Lodge, but it was not until 2nd March, 1928, that the Lodge adopted a resolution to participate in the project of a new American Masonic Temple, in accordance with a scheme presented by the Scottish Rite Bodies, dated 15th February, 1928, under which the Lodge had to make a first invesrment of TS. 2,500.

The meeting on 2nd March, 1928, was the last one held in the Masonic Hall, No. 30 The Bund, where the Lodge had been consecrated. The Lodge then moved to temporary quarters in the South Room of the former Municipal Town Hall in Hankin^ Road, where three meetings were held, on 6th April, 4th May, and 1st June, 1928. At the meeting in May, the Lodge voted not to support the proposed new International Lodge, to be known as Chung Hua Lodge.

The Lodge's first meeting in the new American Masonic Temple was held on 7th September, 1928. On that evening a new ballot-box was presented to the Lodge by Bro A. W. Cleaver-Browne, and the By-Laws were amended to increase the fees.

The Installation of Wor. Bro. E. T. M. van Bergen as Master for' 1928/9 was not recorded in the Lodge Minutes; he was installed at a "joint" meeting with other Massachusetts Lodges. At the meeting on 5th October, 1928, however, he delivered a lecture on the revised working furnished by the Grand Lecturer of Grand Lodge, with details of the floor work of the three degrees.

After the meeting on 2nd. November, 1928, the brethren dined together at the French Club (Cercle Sportiff Français) to bid farewell to the Worshipful Master, who was shortly leaving for the U. S. A.

The Treasurer’s statement for the year 1928/9, submitted on 4 October, 1929, showed a cash balance of Ch.$1,463.55 and Debentures of Ch$ 1,300.

In January, 1930, the style of the Lodge circular was altered, and for about three years the front page of the circular bore a picture of the central portion of the Shanghai Bund. About that time contributions were asked to the "Juniper Hall" Fund. This building had been presented to the Craft by Mrs. Whittall, widow of a Past Grand Master of Massachusetts (Ed. Note: this is inaccurate; Bro. Whittall was a Director), and some U. S.8200,000. were required to convert the building into a Hospital for Masons. Shanghai Lodge contributed U. S. $100. In order to avoid misunderstanding, it was pointed out later that the Massachusetts Masonic Home and the Juniper Hall Hospital were not available to members in China, and more particularly not available to non-American members of Massachusetts Lodges.

An Exemplification Meeting was held on 13th June, 1930, for members of the Massachusetts Constitution only, when the Second Degree was worked by Shanghai Lodge. On this occasion M. Wor. Bro. Herbert W. Dean, Grand Master of Massachusetts, paid an official visit accompanied by Rt Wor. Bro. Charles C. Balcom, Grand Marshal. At the request of the M.Wor. Grand Master, Rt. Wor. Bro. Charles C. Balcom criticized the ceremony, pointed out the differences from that followed in Massachusetts, so that these differences might be eliminated.

On 7th November, 1930, Wor. Bro. W.A. Skuse (W. M. 1925/6) presented the Lodge with a Collection Plate of blackwood, suitably inscribed.

The Lod0ge gave its full support to social events, arranged by the American Masonic Temple Association, on 19th December, 1930, and 30th. January, 1931. The former was a "Social and Dance", and the latter event an "Entertainment, Supper and Dance", with special features of community singing, Paul Jones dances, songs, monologues, banjo solos, etc.

In December, 1931, Wor. Bro. Thurston R. Porter, Deputy D. G. M., visited the Lodge officially, and emphasised some eight important points in connection with the welfare of the Lodge. He pointed out that the Lodge was the second wealthiest in the China District, having assets of Ch.$93 per member, but that its charitable contributions were only six per cent of its income, while a large proportion was spent on refreshments. Following this, a Resolution was passed that Lodge income should not be used for entertainment or refreshment, those items to be covered by voluntary contributions.

On 8th January, 1932, the members voted to hold one meeting a year when the work would be conducted by Past Masters.Shanghai Lodge lost one of its members in tragic circumstances in the days of tension just before the outbreak of Sino/Japanese hostilities in Chapei, at the end of January, 1932, On 24th January, 1932, Bro. Dr. Albert Porges was driving near Lunghwa Pagoda and stopped his car to be searched by a Chinese sentry when another young Chinese sentry fired his rifle - said to be amistake. In over-zealousness-killing Bro. Porges. A special Meeting of the Lodge was called at 2.35 p.m. on 28th January, 1932, and the brethren proceeded to the parlours of the International Funeral Directors where a Masonic Funeral Service was held over the remains of the late Bro. Albert Porges. That same evening open hostilities commenced in Chapei, and the State of Emergency which prevailed for some time cause the Regular Meeting, which should have been held on 5th February, 1932, to be abandoned. Meetings were held on 4th March and 1st April, 1932, but were summoned at 6 p. m. and closed at 8 p. m. owing to curfew restrictions.

The Lodge's first "Past Masters Night" v/as held on 6th May, 1932, at 8 p/m., when Wor. Bro. W. A. Skuse occupied the Chair and appointed his team to raise three brethren. Bro. G. Wood, the remaining Founding member of the Lodge, was also welcomed on that occasion.

At the Annual Meeting held on 2nd September, 1932, it was decided not to have a banquet after the Installation, but a simple cold collation (recorded by the Secretary as a "simple coalition."!).

There was no degree work on 4th November, 1932, but the brethren were much interested in a Lecture given by Wor. Bro. Charles Kliene (W.M. 1924/5 on the subject "Masonic History and Symbolism". Starting at a period said to be some 50,000 years ago, Wor. Bro. Kliene traced down through the ages to the present era the numerous mystic symbols inherited from early Egyptian and Chinese periods now used in speculative masonry. Wor.Bro. Kliene also illustrated his Lecture on a blackboard.

Again on 2nd. December, 1932, there was no degree work, and Wor. Bro, Thurston R. Porter, Deputy D. G. M., delivered a Lecture on the History of Massachusetts Masonry at Home and Abroad; at the conclusion of the Lecture he mentioned having heard from Wor. Bro. A. Q. Adamson, P. D. D. G. M., at that time the Junior Warden of a Lodge In Jerusalem, Palestine, whence he had sent one Rough Ashlar and one Smooth Ashlar, for Sinim Lodge and the District Grand Lodge respectively.

The Lodge revised its membership rolls at the end of 1932, and in January, 1933, thirty-seven brethren were discharged from membership over the period 1914-1930.

Ten gold bars for his Treasurer’s jewel were presented to Bro. J.W. Chadderton on 3rd February, 1933, in appreciation of ten years service as Treasurer.

More interesting papers were read in 1933. On 3rd March, Wor. Bro. C. Matthews, P. D. G. W., D. G. TYLER (E. C.), read papers on "The Reception and Introduction of Visitors" and the"Preparation of Candidates". At the next meeting, after the Second Degree ceremony, Wor. Bro. A. J. Hughes - P. M. of Royal Sussex Lodge, No. 501, E. C.- read a paper entitled "Masonry a Moral Force" .•"The Installation meeting on 6th October, 1933, was notable for the fact that the Worshipful Master, Wor. Bro. I.G.Riddick, installed his successor, Bro. C.E. Horseman.(On this occasion ot was recorded that two P. Ms. were "delicated" as Commission to receive the D.D.G.M.!)

Another "Past Masters Night” was held on 6th April, 1934, when a team of Past Masters worked the Third Degree ceremony.

Wor. Bro. Charles Kliene delivered another interesting Lecture on 2nd November, 1934, on the "Seals of the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts"; he was assisted by Bro. Case, who illustrated the Lecture with lantern slides.

In 1934, the Installation Meeting was delayed until 7th December, when the Wor. Master, Wor. Bro. C. E. Horsman, installed the Master-elect, Bro. W. D. Meredith. That sane evening a silver salver, suitably engraved, was presented to Bro. J. W. Chadderton in token of appreciation for his services as Treasurer of the Lodge for fourteen years.

The social life of the Lodge was not overlooked, and from time to time the Entertainment Committee arranged social events vhich were highly appreciated. Brethren were also encouraged to attend the monthly "Cemen�ters" tiffins at the Masonic Club, and so become better acquainted.

In 1935, amendments to the By-Laws were approved, altering the annual Election meeting from September to June, and the Installation meeting to September. (The latter was held in October in 1936.)

In April, 1935, the Lodge voted a present to be sent to Wor. Bro. Walter F. W. Taber, for eight years Proxy for the Lodge at Grand Lodge, Boston This took the form of a silver Pagoda, kindly delivered in person by Wor. Bro. V. F. Bradfield, and acknowledged at the meeting on 4th December,1936.

A high honour was conferred on one of the Lodge’s Honorary Members in 1935, when the Grand Lodge of Scotland appointed Rt. Wor. Bro. E. J. Hudson to be their representative near the Grand Lodge of California, and conferred on him the rank of Honorary Junior Grand Warden <Sf the Grand Lodge of Scotland.

By special arrangement the W. M., Wor. Bro. W. D. Meredith, Installed the Master-elect, Wor. Bro. Charles Kliene, on 6th September, 1935, and Wor. Bro. W. A. Sims , P. D. D. G. M., occupied the S. W. Chair, with Wor. Bro. Thurston R.Porter, D. D. G. M., in the J.W. Chair. After his installation, Wor. 3ro. Kliene stated that he was deeply touched by having these brethren in the Wardens' Chairs, because they were his Wardens when he was previously Master in 1924/5. What made the event more remarkable, and never likely to occur again, was the fact that the "Acting S. W." was a "P. D. D. G. M." and the "Acting J. W." was then the "D. D. G. M." of the District Grand Lodge, Massachusetts Constitution.

Officers were elected as usual in June, 1936, when Bro. W. C. A. Wolnizer became Master-elect. No record was made, however, in the Minute book of his Installation, which took place at a joint installation with other Lodges of the Massachusetts Constitution in October, 1936.

A special visitor attended the meeting on 4th December, 1936, in the person of M. Em. Sir Kt. Andrew D. Agnew, M. Eminent Grand Master of the Grand Encampment of Knights Templar of the U. S. A., who was introduced by Wor. Bro, C. E. Horsnan, D. D. G. M. Rt. Wor.Bro. V. F. Bradfield, District Grand Master, visited the Lodge on 7th March, 1937, when he gave an interesting discourse on "Friendship", and again on 4th March, 1938, when he spoke on the "Tenets of Freemasonry" and how they should be applied.

The Sino/Japanese hostilities which broke out in August, 1937, and raged violently round Shanghai for some three months, fortunately did not stop the usual meetings, though many members had to attend in uniform, and the meetings were summoned at an earlier hour owing to Curfew restrictions, then imposed at 10 p.m.

The Lodge finances have been maintained in satisfactory condition and the membership at the end of August, 1937, numbered seventy-eight.

The following brethren were elected Honorary Members of the Lodge:

  • 1st April, 1921:
    • Rt. Wor. Bro. Rev. John R. Hykes, D. G. M.
  • 6th May,1921:
    • Rt. Wor. Bro. F. W. Hamilton, Grand Secretary, Grand Lodge of Massachusetts, Boston
    • Rt. Wor. Bro. F. W. Thayer, Proxy in Grand Lodge
  • 3rd March 1922:
    • Rt. Wor. Bro. C. S. F. Lincoln, D. G. M.
  • 6th June, 1924:
    • Bro. L. R. O. Haven
  • 3rd April, 1925:
    • Wor. Bro. G. E. Marshall, a Founder of the Lodge
  • 4th March, 1927:
    • Wor. Bro. Walter F. W. Taber, Proxy in Grand Lodge
  • 8th January, 1932:
    • (Rt.) Wor. Bro. E. J. Hudson (Hon. J. G. W., Scotland)
    • Rt. Wor. Bro. I. V. Gillis, D. G. M.
  • 2nd December, 1932:
    • (Rt.) Wor.Bro. V. F. Bradfield, D. G. M.
  • 3rd. March 1933:
    • Bro. George Wood, a Founder of the Lodge
  • 6th September,1935:
    • M. Wor. Bro. Arthur D. Prince, Past Grand Master of Massachusetts
    • Rt. Wor. Bro. P. M. Streit, Grand Inspector of the Grand Lodge of Ireland
  • 4th February, 1938
    • Wor. Bro. Laurence M. Jackson, Proxy in Grand Lodge

The following is the Roll of Masters from 1913 to 1937:

  • 1913 S. Kewkin
  • 1913/14 C. Roeper
  • 1914/15 C. Houghton
  • 1915/16 J.A. Nield
  • 1916/17 C. Powell
  • 1917/18 H. W. Strike
  • 1918/19 E. O. Thomas
  • 1919/20 C. S. Hepburn
  • 1920/21 W. F. Dearn
  • 1921/22 J. J. H. Dearn
  • 1922/23 W. S. Bardarson
  • 1923/24 E. A. Dearn
  • 1924/25 C. Kliene
  • 1925/26 W.A. Skuse
  • 1926/27 T. R. Porter
  • 1927/28 T. H. Richardson
  • 1928/29 E. T. M. van Bergen
  • 1929/30 C. E. Larsen
  • 1930/31 W. Golding
  • 1931/32 F. A. Naylor
  • 1932/33 I. G. Riddick
  • 1933/34 C. E. Korsman
  • 1934/35 W. D. Meredith
  • 1935/36 C. Kliene
  • 1936/37 W. C. A. Wolnizer
  • 1937/38 F. Boorman


The following is a transcription of a typescript history in the archives of the Samuel Crocker Lawrence Library, Boston.

SHANGHAI LQDGE holds its meetings in the American Masonic Temple, 178 Route Dufour (French Concession), Shanghai, Kiangsu Province, Republic of China, under the jurisdiction of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of Ancient Free and Accepted Masons of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts of the United States of America.

Inception of the Lodge.

All available records give no indication of the reasons for the formation of this Lodge in Shanghai. The Minutes, from which this brief history is compiled, open with an account of its first official meeting, but beyond that the records are silent as to the raison d'etre of this Lodge which was established in this city at the dawn of the century.

There is little doubt, however, that the founders were animated by the same desires that find fulfillment in the establishment of Lodges elsewhere on the globe. It is that universal desire which leads men of like temperament to seek one another's society, and when this social union is cemented by the ties of the Craft, then a Lodge is founded wherein the rituals of Free Masonry may be advantageously practised, and where, amongst brethren of sympathetic outlook, the sense of fraternal relations and duties is kept alive.

With these views in mind, therefore, the founding brethren conducted the Opening Meeting of the Lodge, which took place at 9 p.m. on October 8th, 1903.

On this auspicious occasion, "Orient Lodge" which was its initial title, was called to order with the following Officers at their respective stations:

  • Worshipful Master: Samuel. R. Gale
  • Senior Warden: John D. Bentley
  • Junior Warden: George. E. Marshall
  • Treasurer: Hervey J. Longhurst
  • Secretary: George Wood
  • Chaplain: John S. Dooly
  • Marshall (acting): Alexander N. Belyea
  • Senior Deacon: Alfred H. Aiers
  • Junior Deacon: Henry M. Thompson
  • Senior Steward: Harold C. Child
  • Junior Steward (acting): Arthur M. Anderson
  • Inside Sentinel: Robert H. Mulley
  • Tyler: John Fauld

This meeting was held under dispensation, granted by the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of Ancient Free and Accepted Masons of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts of the United States of America, to constitute a Lodge which was to work on probation for the period of one year.

The Dispensation was read by Right Worshipful Brother George Alonzo Derby, Proxy for the District Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts.

First Candidates.

At this meeting applications from the following Candidates to take degrees in Orient Lodge were read:—

Tom Newton Hugall,
Richard Charles Aiers,
Arthur Henry Oliver
and Harry George Helyer.

To this day, Worshipful Brother A. H. Oliver is still an active member of Shanghai Lodge, as it is now known, and it is hoped that he may long continue as such.

The first candidate to receive light in "Orient Lodge" was Tom Newton Hugall, on the evening of November 16th, 1903.

Change of Name.

Following a request from the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts to change the name of the Lodge, a Regular Meeting was held on May 6th, 1904, and at this meeting it was proposed by Brother J. H. Longhurst and seconded by Brother A. H. Alers that the name "Oriental Lodge" be substituted. This proposal met with unanimous approval.

No information is available in the records to show the reason for the ultimate decision to adopt the name "Shanghai Lodge," which name appears on the Charter granted later. Reference, however, to the roll of the Lodges operating under Charter from the Grand Lodge at that time elucidates the fact that two Lodges of the name of "Orient" were already functioning in Massachusetts, (one at Norwood and the other at Edgartown) and there is little room for doubt that it was for this reason that the change was requested.

Visit by Right Worshipful Brother G. Derby.

At the eleventh meeting of the Lodge held on June 3rd, 1904, a visit was received by Right Worshipful Brother George Alonzo Derby, Proxy for the District Grand Master.

During the course of the evening the Worshipful Master expressed the hope that the distinguished visitor would do all in his power to further the Interests of the Lodge in obtaining the Charter; as this meeting was the last to be held under the existing Dispensation, he also availed himself of this opportunity of once again thanking the District Grand Lodge for its unfailing courtesy and aid.

Replying, Right Worshipful Brother Derby asserted that the District Grand Lodge would certainly strongly recommend that a Charter be granted, since he had heard from several sources of the good and harmonious work of the new Lodge. He further said that he hoped to have many opportunities of seeing its work in the future.

Consecration Meeting.

After this meeting no other was held until January 6th, 1905. On this date the Consecration Meeting of Shanghai Lodge - as it was now designated under Charter, was called to order for the purpose of Installing the Regular Officers of the Lodge.

Among those present was Right Worshipful Brother Anderson, District Grand Master of the District Grand Lodge of Northern China, English Constitution, and his Officers.After Right Worshipful Brother George Alonzo Derby, Proxy for the District Grand Master had been received with his Officers and accorded, full Masonic Honours, the Worshipful Master, Samuel R. Gale read the following application: -

"The Brothers of Shanghai Lodge here assembled wish me to inform you that the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge was pleased to grant them a Letter of Dispensation bearing date August 11th, 1903, authorizing them to form and open a Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons in the City of Shanghai: that since that period they have regularly assembled and conducted the business of Masonry according to the best of their abilities: that their proceedings having received the approbation of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge, they have obtained a Charter of Constitution and are desirous that their Lodge should be consecrated and their Officers installed agreeably to the Ancient Usages and Customs of the Craft for which purpose they are now met and await your pleasure."

Right Worshipful Brother Derby then read the Charter of the Lodge and delivered it to Brother Samuel. R. Gale, after which he took the Chair and directed the Officers and Members to form the following procession.

Stewards with white rods
Secretary & Treasurer
Two Brethren carrying the Lodge Charter
A Brother carrying the Bible
The Master
A Brother with corn
Brothers with wine and oil
A Past Master with a burning taper
Two Stewards with white rods carrying the square & compasses
Two Past Masters with tapers
Book of Constitutions
Deputy District Grand Master with Deacons

The actual ceremony of the Consecration of Shanghai Lodge was then proceeded with and the following Officers were regularly installed for the ensuing year.

  • Worshipful Master: Samuel. R. Gale
  • Senior Warden: John D. Bentley
  • Junior Warden: George. E. Marshall
  • Treasurer: Hervey J. Longhurst
  • Secretary: Harry G. Helyer
  • Chaplain: John S. Dooly
  • Marshall: Arthur H. Oliver
  • Senior Deacon: Alfred H. Aiers
  • Junior Deacon: Henry M. Thompson
  • Senior Steward: Harold C. Child
  • Junior Steward: Arthur M. Anderson
  • Inside Sentinel: Robert H. Mulley
  • Tyler: John Y. Gould

The District Grand Marshall then proclaimed Shanghai Lodge opened on the roll of the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts in the East, West, and South.

After this, Right Worshipful Brother Derby addressed the Worshipful Master and Officers on the duties pertaining to their respective offices and wished the new Lodge every possible success.

Here follows a list of the Charter Members and Members as on September 14th, 1904.

Charter Members

  • Bro. A. R. Gale
  • Bro. J. D. Bentley
  • Bro. G. E. Marshall
  • Bro. A. H. Aiers
  • Bro. H. M. Thompson
  • Bro. R. F. A. Andrin
  • Bro. C. W. S. Lightbody
  • Bro. J. S. Dooly
  • Bro. G. Wood
  • Bro. Roberts
  • Bro. A. Anderson
  • Bro. H. C. Child
  • Bro. C. A. Biddle
  • Bro. R. H. Mulley
  • Bro. J. H. Longhurst


  • Bro. T. N. Hugall
  • Bro. H. G. Helyer
  • Bro. R. C. Aiers
  • Bro. A. H. Oliver
  • Bro. E. J. E. Stringer
  • Bro. E. M. French
  • Bro. W. K. Morris
  • Bro. W. T. G. Allen
  • Bro. W. C. Wood

Founder's Jewel.

At a meeting held on May 5th, 1905 a letter from the Deputy District Grand Master was read in open Lodge giving official permission for the Charter Members of Shanghai Lodge to wear a Founder's Jewel.

Brother J. J. Walsh.

An Interesting event took place at a Special Meeting held on September 15th, 1905, when a candidate, John Joseph Walsh was ballotted for, initiated and passed to the degree of Fellow-craft in the same evening. This unusual procedure was carried out in accordance with the dispensation granted by the District Grand Lodge.

Eleven days later, at another Special Meeting, this same candidate was raised to the Sublime Degree of Master Mason thus securing the rare distinction of obtaining the three degrees within the period of one month.

Past Master's Jewel.

The first Past Master's Jewel presented by Shanghai Lodge was pinned upon the breast of Worshipful Brother Samuel. R. Gale at a Regular Meeting held on April 6th, 1906.

Lodge of Instruction.

Over three years now pass and we come to a meeting held on October 7th, 1909, at which meeting mention is first made of a Lodge of Instruction.

At this meeting Brother F. E. N. Rosser said that he thought it would be a good idea if a Lodge of Instruction were formed by the American Lodges, as there were many members who would be glad to attend in order to gain a thorough knowledge of the work.

Worshipful Brother G. E. Marshall then stated that the Deputy District Grand Master had mentioned the organization of a Lodge of Instruction to him, and had already asked him to find out the opinion of Shanghai Lodge on the matter, since sanction from Massachusetts would have to be obtained.

Following the favourable expression of opinion on this matter by members of the Lodge, Worshipful Brother Marshall promised to inform the Deputy District Grand Master accordingly.

This scheme seems to have been dropped, however, for almost another three years elapsed before Shanghai Lodge appointed a Committee to meet representatives of Sinim and Ancient Landmark Lodges. On this occasion their combined efforts appear to have borne fruit, because at a meeting held on December 6th of the same year, Brother W. Lloyd wrote to Shanghai Lodge wishing the Lodge of Instruction every success. The records give every indication that this Lodge of Instruction successfully functioned for some seventeen years. After this period, however, some misunderstanding must have arisen, since we read in the Minutes of the meeting held on September 6th, 1929, that:

"It was resolved that Shanghai Lodge is not in favour of the Lodge of Instruction being continued, and decided to definitely withdraw from future participation."

Happily, it was not long before the breach was healed through the instrumentality of Most Worshipful Brother Herbert W. Dean, Grand Master of Masons in Massachusetts, who visited Shanghai in June, 1930. Through his good offices, another Lodge of Instruction was then formed which is very successfully carrying on.

In this visit Most Worshipful Brother Dean was accompanied by Right Worshipful Brother Charles C. Balcom, Grand Marshal.

The Great War; 1914-1918

No mention is made in the Minutes regarding these crucial years, as was befitting of an institution that fails to be disturbed by changes in political opinion.


Bro. G. W. BENNETT, M. C., Capt. Yorkshire and Lancashire Regt.

Bro. H. M. Cattley.
Bro. E. L. Dawson.
Bro. C. Houghton.
Bro. W. Lloyd.
Bro. D. McInnes.
Bro. E. Pilbeam.
Wor. Bro. C. Powell.

The Masonic Library.

It would be an opportune occasion here to say a few words about the Masonic Library. At a regular meeting held on June 6th, 1924, the then Worshipful Master, Charles Powell, informed the Brethren of a proposal by the Deputy District Grand Master, Right Worshipful Brother S. Sheldon, for each of the three American Lodges to contribute an equal sum towards equipping a Masonic Library.

This proposal was favourably entertained by Members of this Lodge and accordingly a Committee was appointed, consisting of Brothers H. W. Strike, Chas. Kliene and Wm. A. Chapman.

No further mention of a library is made in the Minutes until four years later, when, at a meeting held on May 4th, 1928, Worshipful Brother Van Bergen informed the Brethren that he had appointed Brother Leonti Pavlovitch Podpakh Librarian of the Lodge. He appealed to all Brethren in possession of any masonic books or literature they could spare, to hand these over to Brother Podpakh to form the nucleus of a library which was to be housed in the new American Masonic Temple.

It was from this small beginning, and through the untiring energy and unselfish efforts of Brother Podpakh, that the very fine and comprehensive library we have at present has grown.

Defeat of the Teetotallers.

At a meeting held on February 2nd, 1923, Worshipful Brother C. Powell gave notice that he would, at the next regular meeting, put forward a motion to the effect that Shanghai Lodge go "dry", which motion was defeated at the next regular meeting by 15 votes to 3.

1924/25 Session.

No meetings of any special interest appear to have taken place until that held on September 5th, 1924, which was presided over by Worshipful Brother W. B. Pettus, Special Deputy of the Most Worshipful Grand Master.

This meeting happened to fall on the same evening on which the election of officers for the ensuing year took place, and Worshipful Brother Wm. A. Skuse, who was elected to the office of Senior Warden was, for some reason not stated, duly installed as Senior Warden at that very same meeting by Worshipful Brother W. B. Pettus.

It would appear from the records that during the year 1924/25 the Lodge did not go into recess for the months of July and August.

Treasurer's Jewel.

On October 2nd, 1925, Brother John. W. Chadderton was presented with a Treasurer's Jewel. He was further honoured at a meeting held on February 3rd, 1933, when he was presented with ten gold bars as a souvenir and a token of appreciation from the Lodge for his ten years of faithful service as its Treasurer.

New Quarters for the Lodge.

At a meeting held on November 5th, 1926, Worshipful Brother Chas. Kliene brought up the matter of the coming demolition of the Masonic Temple on the Bund, and requested that a committee be appointed to consider the question of immediate quarters. At the following meeting held on December 3rd, 1926, a motion was put to the Lodge that they vacate the Masonic Hall at the end of that month and secure accommodation at the Town Hall at a yearly rental of Taels 150 as against Taels 450 then paid. The motion was lost by 8 votes to 6, and the question of removal was left to the Finance Committee who were to report their findings at a subsequent meeting.

This report was accordingly presented by the Finance Committee on January 7th, 1927, when they Informed the Lodge that it was their unanimous opinion that no steps be taken in this direction until the decision of the Owning Bodies, which was to be obtained in a letter addressed to them, was ascertained.

This decision was not forthcoming until the end of the year, when it was announced by Worshipful Brother Thurston. R. Porter at the meeting held on December 2nd, 1927. It was to the effect that the Owning Bodies of the Masonic Hall had been successful in securing new quarters in Yuen Ming Yuen Road, and that a cordial invitation had been extended to all the Lodges at present working in the Hall to make use of the new premises on an equal footing. Upon receipt of this information the Brethren resolved not to take any definite action until the matter had been given further consideration.

The question of new quarters received further attention at a meeting held on March 2nd, 1928, when Worshipful Brother Edgar. T.M. Van Bergen outlined the scheme for the building of a new American Temple. On this account, opportunity was not taken to make use of the temporary quarters in Yuen Ming Yuen Road, the Town Hall being used for such a purpose instead. The first meeting in the Town Hall was held on April 6th, 1928, and on September 7th, 1928, the Lodge moved into the newly erected American Masonic Temple which has thenceforth been its regular place of assembly.

Retirement of Right Worshipful Brother R. S. Ivy.

At a meeting held on March 4th, 1927, Shanghai Lodge was honoured by the presence of the retiring District Grand Master of the District Grand Lodge of Northern China, (English Constitution),- Right Worshipful Brother R. S. Ivy.At the conclusion of this meeting the Worshipful Master, Worshipful Brother Thurston. R. Porter expressed his appreciation of Right Worshipful Brother Ivy's ever-ready and courteous assistance which he had at all times over a lengthy period been always willing to accord Shanghai Lodge. Since he was shortly returning to his homeland the Right Worshipful Brother was the recipient from the Lodge of hearty wishes for a pleasant voyage and every happiness and prosperity in the future, which sentiments were also ably expressed by the Worshipful Master in his speech.

Right Worshipful Brother R. S. Ivy replied in a brief valedictory address worthy of record:

"Worshipful Master, I wish to express my appreciation at the courtesy accorded me by your Lodge in changing the hour of meeting to suit my convenience, and I also wish to thank your Lodge for the cordial reception which you have accorded myself and ray Officers this evening.

Although I am leaving Shanghai very shortly, I shall always look back with pleasing recollections on the many occasions, extending over a great many years at which I have been privileged to visit your Lodge.

I recall two of your Past Masters, I believe the first two Masters who presided over your Lodge, Worshipful Brothers Gale and Hugall, both of whom I knew very intimately, and one of whom, Worshipful Brother Gale, served also in the English Grand Lodge. There are many other members of your Lodge, whom I have come to know in more recent years.I wish to thank your Lodge for the very beautiful token of regard and esteem which was presented to me in Ancient Landmark Lodge the other evening as a combined gift from the three American Lodges in Shanghai. It is only a token, but with it goes, I am sure, your cordial and good wishes. Brethren of Shanghai Lodge I thank you."

Consecration of Lodge "Lux Orlentis."

The Worshipful Master, Officers and Brethren of Shanghai Lodge received very cordial invitations to be present at the Consecration Ceremony of Lodge "Lux Orientis" under Charter from the Grand Lodge of Vienna, which took place at the Masonic Hall on January 25th, 1933, at 6.00 p.m.

At this meeting, Brother Dr. Frederick Reiss was Installed as worshipful Master by the late Right Worshipful Brother Henry James Clark, District Grand Master, English Constitution.

This new Lodge was founded by fifteen Master Masons, all except one of whom were members of Shanghai Lodge.V

Visit by Most Eminent Sir Knight A. D. Agnew.

At a meeting held on December 4th, 1936, Shanghai Lodge was honoured with a visit by Most Eminent Sir Knight Andrew D. Agnew, Most Eminent Grand Master of the Grand Encampment of Knights Templar of the United States of America. He was accompanied by our Deputy District Grand Master, Worshipful Brother Calvin E. Horsman by whom he was introduced.

Resumption of Relations with Grand Lodge of P. I.

Great pleasure was evinced by Members of the Massachusetts Lodges in Shanghai when they received, early in April 1938, the happy intelligence that fraternal relations, which had been severed a few year previously, had been re-established between the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts and the Grand Lodge of the Phlllipine Islands.

Inter-lodge visits were immediately resumed, and dual memberships, disallowed by the misunderstanding hitherto existing, were rapidly renewed.

It is hoped that nothing will in future break the fraternal bonds which now so felicitously unite these two Constitutions, and that the resumption of fraternal relationship will stand as a good omen indicative of mutually beneficent co-operation in the years to come.

Sino-Japanese Hostilities.

Although the advent of the 1937 Sino-Japanese hostilities was responsible for disrupting the programmes of numerous social organizations, it is pleasing to note that Shanghai Lodge still "carried on" during the first critical months of this regrettable affair, when death came from the skies and lay in ambush around the corner.

Most of the members of this Lodge were then mobilized in the Shanghai Volunteer Corps and the September meeting saw a large number of them in uniform, as indeed most of the city's available man-power had been mobilized to meet the exigencies of the situation.

Happily, the state of emergency did not continue in Shanghai too long to disorganize routine Masonic activity, and normal schedules were speedily resumed when the fighting moved away about the middle of November.It must be recorded tnat meetings were held much earlier during this troubled period on account of curfew restrictions which were imposed after 10.00 p.m.


Thus ends this brief history of Shanghai Lodge. In these notes so roughly assembled it has been the endeavour of the compiler to acquaint the reader with the outlines of a progress of thirty five years' duration.

We may say with some measure of confidence that the spirit which animated the Founders of the Lodge at the dawn of the century has not ceased to cast its inspiring influence on the present body of Officers who is thus motivated to cleave to the highest ideals and traditions of the Craft.

In this Lodge, the brethren have always been taught to regard their Lodge as a Temple erected above the prejudice, and dissensions, and selfishness - a Temple dedicated to Friendship, Love and Truth, where men of all parties are taught to lay aside their differences and their hypocrisy, and meet on the common ground of Truth and Charity.

With such enobling ideals set before them, the future of the Lodge appears to be bright, and if these ideals are adhered to in spirit and in Truth, there Is little doubt that Shanghai Lodge will long flourish with credit to itself and honour to the Fraternity.

This "BRIEF HISTORY OF SHANGHAI LODGE" was compiled from the Minutes of the Lodge by a Past Master of this Lodge.

The history includes a list of the principal officers of the lodge.


  • 1936 (Medal presentation, 1936-128)


1904: China District

1911: China District

1927: China District

1947: Shanghai District

1957: China District


Massachusetts Lodges