- 1 LAFAYETTE LODGE (North Adams)
- 2 REFERENCES IN GRAND LODGE PROCEEDINGS
- 2.1 ANNIVERSARIES
- 2.2 VISITS BY GRAND MASTER
- 2.3 BY-LAW CHANGES
- 2.4 HISTORY
- 2.5 OTHER
- 2.6 EVENTS
- 2.7 GRAND LODGE OFFICERS
- 2.8 OTHER BROTHERS
- 2.9 DISTRICTS
- 2.10 LINKS
LAFAYETTE LODGE (North Adams)
Location: North Adams
Chartered By: Simon W. Robinson
Charter Date: 01/08/1849 V-214
Precedence Date: 07/08/1847
- Abel Wetherbee, 1849-1851, 1860-1862
- A. A. Richmond, 1852, 1853
- Henry Chickering, 1854
- Evenol Estes, 1855
- John Lewis, 1856
- N. S. Babbit, 1857-1859
- L. C. Homer, 1863
- E. J. Decker, 1864-1867
- William H. Gaylord, 1868
- Robert Howard, 1869, 1870
- William Warren, 1871, 1872
- H.S. Millard, 1873
- B. G. Olds, 1874
- Alexander W. Fulton, 1875, 1876, 1884 ; SN
- C. F. Lindsay, 1877, 1878
- R. A. Warren, 1879
- C. E. Ketchum, 1880-1883
- R. B. Harvie, 1885
- H. E. Cary, 1886, 1887
- Frederick E. White, 1888, 1889, 1906; SN
- H. C. Savage, 1890, 1891
- S. A. Plumb, 1892, 1893
- A. A. Wills, 1894, 1895
- J. M. Prentice, 1896
- A. W. Blanchard, 1897, 1898
- E. A. Rand, 1890
- L. Coleman, 1900, 1901
- George B. Fisher, 1902; SN
- S. H. Plumb, 1903, 1904
- L. Amell, 1905
- B. B. Fitch, 1907
- S. Lightholder, 1908, 1909
- H. Palmer, 1910
- David B. Dunham, 1911; Memorial
- William J. Geddes, 1912; SN
- Finlay C. McIntyre, 1913
- Lester N. Davis, 1914
- Tibbitts N. Northrup, 1915
- John R. Button, 1916
- Fred A. Windover, 1917
- Robert H. Harvie, 1918
- Ralph K. Carpenter, 1919
- Harold E. Byam, 1920; SN
- Jedediah D. Boutwell, 1921
- Albert L. Fuller, 1922
- David T. Williams, 1923
- William H. Berry, 1924
- Horace Snape, 1925
- Louis C. Winship, 1926
- Frank Spink, 1927
- William R. Bettie, 1928
- Englebert M. Schmidt, 1929
- Samuel W. McClelland, 1930
- Ernest G. Schmidt, 1931
- Clarence F. Miller, 1932
- Harold D. Pruyne, 1933
- Earl D. Getman, 1934
- Harold L. Blanchard, 1935
- Duncan MacNaughton, 1936, 1945; N
- David C. Hosley, 1937
- Benjamin K. Wonson, 1938
- Harry F. Hayden, 1939
- Charles R. Canedy, 1940
- Louis H. Potter, 1941
- Clarence P. Billings, 1942
- Samuel Wood, 1943; N
- Bonnar D. Wilcox, 1944
- Llewellyn A. Manson, 1946
- Thomas I. Riddell, 1947
- Harold F. Mutart, 1948
- Horace R. Loomis, 1949
- Sylvannus E. Williams, 1950
- James Whittle, 1951
- Gordon S. Lesure, 1952
- Fran J. Jirkovsky, 1953
- John M. Cooper, 1954
- Harold R. Amato, 1955, 1971, 1983-1985; SN
- Harry M. Ebert, 1956
- Donald O. Canedy, 1957, 1972; SN
- Simeon M. Avdoulos, 1958
- Robert R. Rivard, 1959
- Ernest G. Schmidt, 1960. 1073
- Russell J. Whittle, 1961
- Fredrick E. Williams, 1962
- Morton S. Reimer, 1963
- George H. Fischer, 1964
- Lionel A. Blair, 1965
- Edward J. Konopka, Jr., 1966, 1967
- Harry Lebowitz, 1968
- Morton S. Reimer, 1969, 1970
- William R. Beattie, 1974
- George W. Fischer, 1975, 1976
- Anthony P. Babcock, 1977. 1980, 1981, 1986, 1987
- Edward E. Kennedy, 1978, 1979
- Robert E. Brownsword, 1982
REFERENCES IN GRAND LODGE PROCEEDINGS
- Petition for Dispensation: 1847
- Petition for Charter: 1848
- Consolidation Petition (with Greylock Lodge): 1987
- 1947 (Centenary)
VISITS BY GRAND MASTER
- 1882 (Lawrence)
- 1885 (Howland)
- 1904 (Sanford; Hall dedication; Special Communication)
- 1913 (Benton)
- 1916 (M. Johnson)
- 1925 (Ferrell)
- 1929 (H. Dean; Hall dedication; Special Communication)
- 1931 (H. Dean)
- 1937 (Allen; reception for Junior Grand Warden William Hamilton)
- 1939 (Perry)
- 1947 (Wragg; Centenary; Special Communication)
- 1988 (Ames; Consolidation; Special Communication)
- 1947 (Centenary History, 1947-112)
CENTENARY HISTORY, MAY 1947
From Proceedings, Page 1947-112:
By Right Worshipful Duncan McNaughton.
This is the day we have looked forward to and talked about for several years, but more particularly, with much interest and enthusiasm, and not a little anxiety, for the past four months. It is a time when, by the very nature of the occasion, we must necessarily for the most part dwell in the past; a time to pause and look back over the road that we have travelled.
On this 100th birthday, our minds quite naturally go back over the pages of our records and are focused upon the year 1847.
In taking a look just a little further back into the distant past, we find that on June 14, 1826, a group of Masons petitioned for a new Lodge to be located in the north parish of the Town of Adams. On September 13, 1826, a Grand Lodge committee reported that for several very good reasons they did not feel that there was a need for another Lodge at that time, and therefore, the petition was denied. I simply mention that to let you know that twenty years before Lafayette Lodge was actually organized, there were Masons here who thought about such a venture.
If we had been members of the Masonic Fraternity living in North Adams prior to the year 1847, we would have had to travel to the neighboring town of what is now known as Adams, or to Williamstown, in order to attend a Lodge meeting. We find it recorded in a previously written history that for many years the Brethren in North Adams frequently walked from here to Cheshire and return, between sunset and sunrise, to meet with Franklin Lodge.
It is also recorded that the plans for the organization of Lafayette Lodge were discussed at a meeting in the "sitting room" of one Alpheus Smith, at which time it was decided to ask for a dispensation. This dispensation was granted on July 8, 1847, by Most Worshipful Simon W. Robinson, Grand Master, and Lafayette Lodge was instituted on August 14, 1847, with Brother Eli Hammond in the Chair and Brother E. D. Whitaker acting as Secretary. This is the first meeting recorded after the dispensation was granted.
It was twenty-two years before the institution of this Lodge that General Lafayette visited the nearby City of Pittsfield. Although this companion of Washington, and friend of America, had been dead for thirteen years prior to the forming of this Lodge, it is quite reasonable to believe that the revolutionary days and the service that Lafayette rendered, together with his visit to Pittsfield, were still quite fresh in the memories of the people of that time. Hence it is quite fitting and timely that the name of this outstanding Mason should have been selected as the name by which our Lodge should be known.
At this first meeting on August 14, 1847, Brother Isaac Hodges presented the Lodge with a set of jewels which had been loaned to him by the officers of the Grand Lodge. The Lodge voted to take said jewels and to become responsible to the Grand Lodge for them.
At this same meeting, the first three applications for degrees were received from Elihu S. Hawks, physician, age 46; Lyman Thompson, teacher, age 43; and Orson C. Woodward, wheelwright, age 35. Apparently the members of Lafayette Lodge were determined from the start to be thorough in their investigation of applicants, for we find that the committee requested further time to investigate one of the applications and action was deferred until a later date. This applicant was elected and served as Treasurer until 1864. At the meeting on September 20, the other two were elected to receive the degrees. At this meeting also a set of By-Laws was presented to the Lodge and accepted.
On the afternoon and evening of Saturday, October 2, 1847, Dr. Elihu S. Hawks was the first Mason made in Lafayette Lodge, by receiving all three degrees on that day. Apparently these degrees were conferred by a group of Masons from Troy, for it is recorded that the Lodge voted their thanks to the Brethren of Troy, New York.
There is among the correspondence of Lafayette Lodge a letter from Troy, New York, dated November 12, 1847, and addressed to Brother Isaac Hodges, part of which is as follows:
I have just learned that one of our most eminent and worthy brethren is about to remove from among us to your pleasant village, Viz. Abel Wetherbee. Tis with regret that we part with him, yet it affords me much pleasure to be able to introduce so worthy a brother to your notice. Brother Wetherbee is one of the most correct, brilliant masonic workers among us. He is capable of filling any office in a lodge, Chapter, or encampment, and has filled all these offices with great ability.
(Signed) John S. Perry
Brother Perry is recorded in the minutes of October 2, 1847, as the presiding Master who conferred the degrees on Dr. E. S. Hawks. And thus was introduced to us Brother Abel Wetherbee, who became our first Worshipful Master, and who filled that office for the years 1849, 1850 and 1851 and again in 1860, 1861 and 1862. On November 22, 1847, it was voted to accept Brother Abel Wetherbee as a member of this Lodge.
May 18, 1848, Brothers Wetherbee, Tyler and Thompson were appointed as a committee to revise the By-Laws and to transcribe the By-Laws and the records for the Grand Lodge.
On May 29, 1848, Brother Wetherbee was elected a delegate to attend the June meeting of the Grand Lodge, to return the dispensation, and to ask for a Charter. A committee appointed to nominate officers to be named in the Charter presented the names of Abel Wetherbee for Worshipful Master, Lansing Allen, Senior Warden, and Samuel Brown, Junior Warden, and these nominations were confirmed by the Lodge.
The Brethren, it seemed, were concerned with each other's welfare for we find that on April 17, 1848, a committee was appointed to confer with Brother Daniel Diamond and request him to stop selling liquor in his house.
From the Grand Lodge Proceedings, we learn that on June 14,1848, the dispensation of Lafayette Lodge was extended until the next regular communication of the Grand Lodge. It seems that there were some irregularities in the By-Laws and the records submitted to the Grand Lodge, for we find that in the Grand Lodge Proceedings, under date of September 13, 1848, the dispensation was further continued until the December meeting. These corrections were accordingly made and resubmitted to the Grand Lodge, and then being acceptable to the committee, it was voted December 27, 1848, upon their recommendation, to issue a Charter to Lafayette Lodge and we have on file the Grand Treasurer's receipt showing that Lafayette Lodge paid the necessary fee.
March 5, 1849, the first election of officers was held. It was voted to meet in Turners Hall for installation and to invite the members of Oneco Lodge of Odd Fellows and the clergymen of this Village to attend. At three o'clock on the afternoon of April 2, 1849, District Deputy Grand Master Franklin Weston of Dalton duly inducted Brother Wetherbee into office as Worshipful Master, after which the Lodge formed in procession to the hall where the ceremonies of constitution were concluded in due form.
St. John's Day was quite generally observed by the Lodges at that time, and on December 27, 1849, the Brethren marched in procession to the Presbyterian Meeting House where the officers were duly installed by R. W. Brother Weston, after which Brother Cook, Chaplain of the Lodge, delivered an address. The Brethren then returned to the lodge-room and closed in due form.
November 18, 1850, it was voted to accept the offer of the Odd Fellows to have the use of their hall at a rental of $30.00 per year.
On December 27, 1853, resolutions were received from Greylock Tent No. 1 of Rechabites expressing their sympathy at our loss from fire and offering the use of their hall, which was accepted with thanks.
On June 1, 1857, it is recorded that the Worshipful Master Was absent, the Charter could not be obtained and therefore there was no communication.
In January of 1851, a Brother was charged with unlawfully and secretly appropriating to his own use a quantity of candles, which he took from the closet in the ante-room of the hall in which we meet, and the charge was that he took said candles at the last communication of this Lodge in December, 1850, and that they were the property of the Odd Fellows, whose rooms we occupy. He was therefore suspended from membership, but a few years later was reinstated.
On August 3, 1857, the Lodge voted its approval of the establishing of a new Lodge in South Adams. This was the beginning of Berkshire Lodge.
On March 29, 1858, arrangements were completed with the Rechabites to rent their hall for $25.00 per year.
February 6, 1860, it was voted to purchase five kerosene lamps at $1.37 each and to sell our fluid lamps at fifty cents each. This is of interest in view of the fact that this year, 1947, is also the centennial of the birth of Thomas A. Edison, who gave us the electric light.
On December 21, 1864, public installation in the Baptist Church was preceded by an address by Rev. Brother S. M. Merrill. After the ceremonies at the Church, the Brethren repaired to the hotel of Mr. Richmond and partook of a bountiful repast prepared by our worthy townsman and landlord.
April 5, 1864, it was voted to hire Harmony Hall to accommodate the Lodge at the funeral of our late Brother Wetherbee.
March 26, 1866, the Treasurer was empowered to lease the new hall in the Wilson Block for five years. This lodge-room was dedicated on June 20, 1866, with an address in the First Baptist Church by Grand Chaplain J. W. Dadmun of Boston and dedication ceremonies in the new lodge-room.
September 24, 1866, Rev. Miles Sanford was raised to the Sublime Degree of a Master Mason. Brother Sanford was Pastor of the First Baptist Church from 1853 to 1871. He was granted a leave of absence that he might act as a Chaplain to the 27th Regiment of the Massachusetts Volunteers.
On December 10, 1867, through the efforts of Brother Sanford, Henry Ward Beecher came here and gave a public lecture, the proceeds being used to help pay some of the indebtedness incurred in furnishing the new hall the previous year.
On July 17, 1870, the Lodge attended the funeral of Brother Alpheus Smith. This is the Brother in whose home the meeting was held when it was decided to ask for a Charter. Apparently Brother Smith retained his membership in his original Lodge, as in the resolutions on his death, it states that he was not a member of Lafayette Lodge.
On March 6, 1871, a petition was received from Brethren in Williamstown praying that the Brethren of Lafayette Lodge consent to their applying for a dispensation to organize a Lodge in that Town.
August 28, 1871, a petition was received from the Brethren of Berkshire Lodge who reside in North Adams asking for the sanction of Lafayette Lodge that they might obtain a dispensation for the establishment of a new Lodge in this place. Permission was granted by full vote of the Lodge. Thus was established Greylock Lodge.
On October 30, 1871, a committee reported that they had collected $127.00 for the relief of distressed Brethren in Chicago — the occasion of the great Chicago fire.
On June 24, 1873, the new Lodge apartments in Burlingame Block on Main Street were dedicated, with a very eloquent address given by Chaplain of the Lodge, Rev. L. Holmes.
On November 8, 1875, a number of bills were passed for payment, among them being one for spittoons, $1.80. Probably when the Grand Master visited they polished them and called them cuspidors.
June 6, 1895, Lafayette Lodge members attended the centennial celebration of Evening Star Lodge of Lee. They were joined on the way by Brethren from Adams, Cheshire and Pittsfield, and were accompanied by Clapp's Band.
June 24, 1896, the members attended the centennial celebration of Cincinnatus Lodge at Great Barrington.
On December 20, 1897, Lafayette Lodge observed its fiftieth anniversary. Worshipful H. F. Cary, as Chairman, gave the address of welcome and then turned the program over to Worshipful A. W. Blanchard. The program consisted of orchestral music, readings, history by Worshipful F. E. White, remarks by visitors, refreshments and dancing. A very detailed newspaper account, together with pictures, has been made a part of our records.
On January 6, 1903, the Trustees of the Masonic Hall met to consider the leasing of rooms in the new Kimball Block. It was voted to lease the rooms, subject to the ratification by the several Masonic bodies, and on January 12th, Lafayette Lodge voted to approve and ratify the action taken by the trustees.
On September 21, 1903, by special dispensation, Roy Wells Gordon received all three degrees on the same day. This is the second time in the history of the Lodge that this was done. This was the last meeting in the rooms in the Burlingame Block, where the Lodge had met for the last thirty years.
November 2, 1903, Lafayette Lodge met in Williamstown, through the kindness of Williams Lodge, and on November 24th, they met in the office of Brother L. Amell, 68 Main Street. On November 30th, they met in the G. A. R. Hall, and on December 21st, they held their first meeting in the new Kimball Building, which was duly dedicated on April 19, 1904, by Most Worshipful Baalis Sanford, Grand Master, and his Suite of Grand Lodge Officers. The dedication was followed by a banquet in the G. A. R. Hall.
March 20, 1905, Worshipful H. F. Cary presented the Lodge with a large framed picture containing portraits of all the Past Masters of the Lodge.
On October 2, 1905, Past Masters' Night was observed with two hundred present and the conferring of the Master Mason Degree. This was apparently the first time that a Past Masters' Night had been held.
On January 8, 1912, we believe for the first time in the history of Lafayette Lodge a full complement of Craftsmen was used in the Second Section. It proved a great success, they did themselves credit, and delighted the Brethren.
On August 11, 1914, Brother Albert D. Houghton, who had affiliated with the Lodge on November 19, 1866, died. He was the first mayor of the city of North Adams and the builder and former owner of this home in which we are now located. December 6, 1915, a portrait of Lafayette was secured and placed on the wall of the Tyler's room.
June 25, 1917, Lodge was opened with the chairs being occupied by Brethren who had been Masons fifty years or longer. The work was put on by the Past Masters of this and the Sixteenth District, and at this meeting, two members (Civil War Veterans) were present when another member in the uniform of World War I was presented a gift from the Lodge. This was an exceptionally fine meeting and is recorded very much in detail, requiring five pages in the Secretary's book, and is very well written.
March 4, 1918, the Committee on War Relief reported having collected $316.00 and forwarded it to the Grand Lodge. December 30, 1918, an incident worthy of record is the fact that the Worshipful Master, Brother Ralph K. Carpenter, inducted into office wearing the Khaki Uniform of the U. S. Army.
Saturday, June 12, 1920, the Anchor Club, composed of employees of the Boston and Maine Railroad, visited Lafayette Lodge and worked the Master Mason Degree. Later, they presented a beautiful State Flag to Lafayette Lodge.
On October 20, 1921, the District Deputy Grand Master presented Lafayette Lodge with a certificate from the George Washington National Memorial Association for having gone over 100% in the campaign.
The seventy-fifth anniversary of the Lodge was observed on October 15th and 16th, 1922. Lodge was opened Sunday, the 15th, with historical remarks being made by Right Worshipful Herbert W. Dean, then all proceeded to the First Methodist Church and listened to an address by Rev. Paul Sterling. Monday afternoon, the 16th, a children's party was held, with entertainment, favors and refreshments. Monday evening, an address was delivered by Rev. H. S. Metcalfe in the lodge-room, followed by music, refreshments and dancing.
On October 22, 1923, Most Worshipful Grand Master Dudley H. Ferrell and his Suite honored us by their presence in our Lodge. The attendance was so large that part of the members had dinner in the Masonic Hall and the overflow was taken care of in the Episcopal Church Parish House.
February 1925 Calendar carried "An Appreciation" page in honor of Right Worshipful A. W. Fulton, who was celebrating the fiftieth anniversary of his installation as Worshipful Master of Lafayette Lodge.
On September 12, 1927, it was voted to ratify and confirm the action of the Trustees in purchasing the Houghton property on Church Street, and on October 10th, by vote of the Lodge, the Master appointed Brother Harvey A. Gallup and Brother W. G. Snyder nominees for the office of incorporators of the newly acquired property. Brother W. G. Snyder was appointed to represent Lafayette Lodge on the building committee.
May 28, 1928, marked the breaking of ground for the new Masonic Temple and July 30th the ceremonies of laying the corner stone. On April 5, 1929 the new Temple was duly dedicated.
The ninetieth anniversary of Lafayette Lodge was observed on Saturday, March 20, 1937, with Most Worshipful Grand Master Claude L. Allen being present. He gave the Brethren a most interesting account of his recent trip to the Grand Lodge of Scotland; also of his visits to Norway, Sweden and Denmark.
On February 14, 1938, a reception was held for Brother Alpheus M. Burdick, who had been a Mason for fifty-nine years and who had been Tyler of this Lodge for thirty-eight years. Brother Burdick was presented a Distinguished Service Medal from the Grand Master, and a large easy chair by the members of his Lodge. Brother Burdick died September 1, 1941.
March 10, 1941, marked the 100th birth anniversary of Brother Robert Irving, and by vote of the Lodge, flowers were sent him. He was also showered with cards by his Brethren.
October 9, 1944, Lafayette Lodge was presented a certificate of merit for having exceeded its quota in the drive for funds for work among the men and women in the Armed Forces. Worshipful Brother Wonson had this certificate framed and presented it to the Lodge on February 12, 1945.
Our Charter Members had no easy time guiding this Lodge through the first fifteen years of its existence, for by 1860 we had attained a membership of only forty. During the Civil War days and immediately thereafter, however, many more were admitted and we find record of many dispensations being granted to work candidates without waiting the usual length of time between degrees. This was also true in World War I, but not so much so in the second World War. I would like to have made reference to some of our so-called "old timers" who have served Lafayette Lodge long and faithfully and who are still with us and ready at all times to be of service, but time will not permit it now. We have had men on our rolls from every walk in life. Some of our members have had much to do with our community life in the past; some have attained positions of prominence and responsibility in the business and professional world, and others in the capacity of government officials.
While the records and correspondence are filled with incidents extolling the virtues and achievements of our members, they are equally frank in reprimanding and bringing to account those of our number who have fallen far short of living up to the lessons which the Lodge has tried to teach. And while we are proud of those of our number who have gained positions of prominence in our community, State and National life, I would not have you forget the members who have never been publicly recognized, but who attended our meetings regularly, paid their dues promptly, supported all its activities generously and actually lived their Masonry in their every day lives. Without such members, Lafayette Lodge would never have reached its 100th birthday. May she have many more of this type of member and prosper for many years to come.
And now on this anniversary, we cannot help feeling the debt we owe those men of one hundred years ago who had the courage and the faith to found this Lodge in such trying times. So let us here and now resolve to maintain the high standards that have been handed down to us, and to plan and conduct the affairs of Lafayette Lodge in the future in such a way that it will continue to be a contributing factor in the life and character of its members, and they, in turn, be always an influence for good in the community in which they live.
- 1895 (Participation in the Centenary of Evening Star Lodge, 1895-79)
- 1896 (Participation in the Centenary of Cincinnatus Lodge, 1896-166)
- 1906 (Establishment of jurisdiction, 1906-60)
OFFICER LIST, JANUARY 1860
From Moore's Freemason's Monthly, Vol. XIX, No. 4, February 1860, Page 128:
Officers of Lafayette Lodge, North Adams, Mass., for 1860.-
- Abel Wetherbee, W. M.
- Jerome B. Jackson, S W.
- Sylvander Johnson, J. W.
- Orrin C. Woodward, Treas.
- L. C. Homer, Sec.
- John Porter, S. D.
- Richard Welch, J. D.
- E. S. Hawkes, Chaplain.
- H. W. Paul Marshal.
- Thos. Holbrook, W. H. Phillips, Stewards.
- Abner Younglove, Tyler.
HALL DEDICATION, JUNE 1866
From Moore's Freemason's Monthly, Vol. XXV, No. 9, July 1866, Page 253:
Wilson House, where the reception was held
NEW HALL AT NORTH ADAMS.
The new hall of Lafayette Lodge, at North Adams, in Berkshire oounty, was dedicated by the Grand Lodge on Wednesday, the 19th June last. The ceremonies were performed by the M. W. Charles C. Dame, Grand Master, assisted by P. G. Master Parkman, as D. G. M.; R. W. Wm. Sutton, S. G. W.; R. W. Chas. W. Moore, as J. G. W.; Bro. Wm. Lumb, as G. Sec.; R. W. Rev. J. W. Dadmun, G. Chaplain; W. Bro. L. L. Tarbell, as G. Marahal. The occasion was one of more than ordinary interest. It was the first time for many years that the Grand Lodge proper had made an official visit to the extreme western county of the State; and its appearance on the present occa sion was looked forward to with increased interest, and the arrangements for the reception were made accordingly. We are told that a larger number of brethren were present in the procession than were ever before brought together in the county on any previous occasion, public or private. The num ber was about five hundred, including several Lodges, Chapters, and the Springfield Encampment, the latter doing the escort duty. The town w crowded with visitors from the neighboring villages, to most of whom the parade was new. The procession, which was finely and efficiently marshaled by Bro. Tarbell, moved through the principal streets to the Baptist Church, where an excellent and appropriate address was delivered by Rev. Bro. Dadmun. The speaker occupied an hour and five minutes, and was listened to with unabated interest to the close. The procession was then again formed, and moved to the Wilson House, a large and elegant new hotel, in the upper part of which the Masonic Hall is located. It is a fine, spacious room, with convenient apartments, and is richly and tastefully furnished. The brethren have been liberal in their expenditures, and may justly pride themselves on having the most elegant Hall in the State west of the Connecticut River. The Lodge has been very prosperous, and is located in one of the most romantic and thriving towns in New England. Our visit was an exceedingly agreeable one; and we regret that our limits do not allow of a more particular mention of the kindnesses of which the Grand Lodge and its members personally were the recipients.
HALL DEDICATION, JUNE 1873
From Moore's Freemason's Monthly, Vol. XXXII, No. 9, September 1873, Page 263:
The new hall recently erected by Lafayette Lodge, at North Adams, was dedicated by the District Deputy Grand Master, Bro. Daniel Upton, assisted by R. W. Henry Chickering as his Deputy, and others, on the 24th of June. About two hundred members of the fraternity with their ladies were present to witness the ceremonies, which were impressively performed by the officiating officers. The address on the occasion was delivered by the Rev. Bro. Holmes, Chaplain for the Lodge, and was a very able and satisfactory performance. His subject was "Masonry considered in relation to Religion and Morals." Assuming it to be a "Religious Institution," he reasoned as follows:
"It was not organized expressly as such, it does not propagate a creed, is not a substitute for religion, yet it is a religious institution. Masonry aims to impress the sentiment of piety upon all who come within her gates. It receives no atheist among its laborers. All its Lodges are erected to God, and dedicated to the holy Saints John. Yes, erected to God, — to none other than the Supreme Architect of the Universe. Says a Masonic writer: Whoever, from love of knowledge, interest or curiosity, desires to be a Mason, is to know that as a foundation and great corner stone, he is firmly to believe in the Eternal God, and pay that worship which is due Him as the Great Architect and Governor of the Universe. Our patrons are no warriors, statesmen, or philosophers even, but the zealous precursor of Jesus Christ, the Baptist, and the Christian disciple and apostle, John the Evangelist. Free Masonry teaches us that all important undertakings should commence with prayer, sanctifies itself by prayer, and ratifies the sentiment of trust in God. We read in the Masonic Trestle-Board, The Brethren cannot be too often reminded of their dependence on the Almighty Architect of the Universe for every blessing they enjoy. Prayer is an ancient and beautiful custom of the Institution. It was the constant practice of our ancestors. Masonry impressively reminds us of the All-Seeing Eye that is ever gazing upon us. Our rooms are dedicated. We have an altar. In all our Lodges the Bible rests thereon, open when we are at work. It is the first great light to which our eyes are directed. Portions of it form part of our ritual; its precepts and histories guide and instruct us. The remark has been made by Masons that their institution was founded on the Scriptures. Verily, in the language of the Masonic Lexicon, We endeavor to erect our spiritual building agreeable to the rules and designs laid down by the Supreme Architect of the Universe, in the great book of nature and revelation. It is not singular, then, as the Scotch have a lively appreciation of the religious, and much respect for their clergy, that the Grand Lodge of Scotland, in 1788, should vote to admit clergymen free of charge. Next to a church, a Masonic lodge seems an appropriate place for ministers of the gospel.
"Thus it clearly appears that Free Masonry is a religious institution. It sends out no missionaries, makes no push to gain proselytes, and can never be turned exclusively to the benefit of any sect, because it admits candidates from all. It can never can be employed as a political engine, as it inculcates loyalty to government, initiates from each party, and exists under every enlightened dominion of the globe. Occupying middle and common ground, it inculcates the general duties that man owes to God, to the benefit of all sects — of humanity itself. It interferes not, cannot, with any man's particular belief, or political bias, while it evokes sacred feeling, cultivates religious principle, and strengthens patriotism. Holding that the Scriptures, to use its own language, is the inestimable gift of God to man, it can lift its glorious ladder of Faith, Hope and Charity, to the starry heavens, and confidently east the evergreen upon the coffin of a deceased brother, hoping unto the very resurrection of the dead, and the break of eternal day."
At the conclusion of the address the brethren and invited guests adjourned to a neighboring hall, where a well spread banquet was served and partaken of by them; after which the party again returned to the Lodge room, where speeches were delivered by Bros. Chickering, Rev. Dr. Annable, R. W. Bro. Upton, Rev. Dr. Crawford and others. The occasion, which was an interesting one, was closed with a ball.
OFFICIAL VISIT, FEBRUARY 1917
From New England Craftsman, Vol. XII, No. 6, March 1917, Page 204:
One of the largest Masonic meetings ever held in North Adams, Mass., was held by Lafayette Lodge on the occasion of the recent official visit to the lodge of Right Worshipful David B. Dunham, district deputy grand master of the 15th District. Among the many visitors were:
Wallace E. Stoddard, Commander of St. Paul Commandery and his suite which was comprised of Past Commanders F. W. Reed, A. A. Hall, P. W. Eaton, H. C. Rand and F. C. Mclntyre, acting as Warder. Another group of visitors present was Right Excellent W. F. Hamilton, District Deputy Grand High priest, and his suite, the Excellents B. McKennie of Adams, J. B. Temple and Hobart C. Tower of North Adams, and Rt. Excellent S. L. A. Hall of Adams. The members of Lafayette Lodge also received Rt. Worshipful Frank E. Peirson of Pittsfield, a permanent member of the Grand Lodge and a past Junior Grand Warden.
District Deputy Grand Master Dunham had in his suite many members prominent in Masonry in Northern Berkshire, Right Worshipful C. D. Tefft of Williamstown, Herbert W. Dean of Cheshire, George French of Greylock Lodge and Alexander Fulton of Lafayette Lodge. Worshipful W. J. Geddes served the Distrcit Deputy Grand Master as Grand Marshal.
One of the very delightful features of the affair was the presentation of Henry Price medals to Dr. H. J. Millard and Alexander Fulton who have completed 50 years of membership in a Masonic order. Interested spectators besides those already mentioned were the masters and wardens of every lodge in the district as was also Right Worshipful Lewis H. Briggs, D. D. G. M. of the 16th District.
During the evening there was an enjoyable musical program which included several vocal solos and piano selections. Refreshments were served.
GRAND LODGE OFFICERS
- Harold R. Amato, DDGM, District 15 (North Adams), 1972, 1973; SN
- Harold E. Byam, DDGM, District 15 (North Adams), 1932, 1933; SN
- Donald O. Canedy, DDGM, District 15 (North Adams), 1962, 1963; SN
- Henry Chickering, DDGM, District 9 (Pittsfield), 1867, 1868; Senior Grand Warden 1862
- David B. Dunham, DDGM, District 15 (North Adams), 1917, 1918; Memorial
- George B. Fisher, DDGM, District 14 (North Adams), 1904; SN
- Alexander W. Fulton, DDGM, District 14 (North Adams), 1897, 1898; SN
- William J. Geddes, DDGM, District 15 (North Adams), 1924, 1925; SN
- Duncan MacNaughton, DDGM, District 15 (North Adams), 1942, 1943; N
- William C. Plunkett, Senior Grand Warden 1855
- Frederick E. White, DDGM, District 14 (North Adams), 1893, 1894; SN
- Samuel Wood, DDGM, District 15 (North Adams), 1952, 1953; N
- Abel Wetherbee, Memorial