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WINSLOW LEWIS, JR., Grand Master

Abraham T. Lowe, Deputy Grand Master
John T. Heard, Senior Grand Warden
Charles H. Train, Junior Grand Warden




Held at Masonic Temple, Boston

  • 03/12: VI-1;
  • 06/11: VI-14;
  • 09/10: VI-31;
  • 12/10: VI-59; (Annual Communication)

03/12 Agenda

  • VI-6: Partial report of the committee on regalia.
  • VI-8: Complaint on jurisdiction between Mount Tom and Hampden Lodges; referred.
    • 06/11: VI-21; Conflict resolved.

06/11 Agenda

  • VI-17: Report of committee on accepting an instrument used at the laying of the Corner Stone of the Boston Public Library.
  • VI-18: Communication from "a body styling itself the Grand Lodge of Canada‚" referred.
    • 09/10: VI-42ff; This body not to be recognized. Extensive historical argument.
  • VI-19: Conflict between Rt. Wor. Jeremiah Stone and King Hiram's Lodge resolved; Rt. Wor. Stone expelled.
  • VI-20: Report on suspension of Master of Germania Lodge.
    • 09/10: VI-34; Communication from Germania Lodge.
    • 09/10: VI-58; to be resolved.
    • 12/10: VI-67; Resolution of the matter, and decision of Grand Master. Master's suspension revoked.
  • VI-21: Committee appointed on re-engraving of diploma plae.
  • VI-23: Committee report on acquiring a new organ.
  • VI-24: Grand Lodge resolution approving the creation of the Pilgrim Monument in Plymouth (the cornerstone would not be laid until 1859.)

09/10 Agenda

  • VI-33: Communication with the Grand Lodge of California on Pacific Lodge (Bethesda Lodge in Valparaiso).
  • VI-34: Report of the Committee on Charity.
  • VI-37ff: Extensive report of the committee on jurisdictional issue between Grecian Lodge and St. Matthew's Lodge.

This conflict arose due to the incorporation of Lawrence, Mass.; the substance of the argument was based on the claim made by Grecian Lodge over the entirety of Lawrence, incorporated in 1837 "by taking portions of Methuen and Andover lying on the North and South banks of the Merrimac[k River].

When Grecian Lodge had its charter - surrendered during the "Antimasonic excitement" - restored in 1847, it was granted the right to relocate its place of meeting to Lawrence; St. Matthew's Lodge, meanwhile, had never surrendered its charter, and conflicts over candidates had placed the Lodges in adersarial positions.

The following proposition was adopted, and would provide a useful precedent for future jurisdictional conflicts due to the redrawing of town boundaries by the State Legislature. (Eventually, concurrent jurisdiction would be adopted, eliminating the need for this sort of conflict.)

"Any person residing on the South side of Merrimac[k] River, on the territory formerly belonging to the town of Andover, but now forming a part of the city of Lawrence who shall be desirous of obtaining the degrees in Freemasonry shall have the right to apply to St. Matthew's Lodge in Andover or Grecian Lodge in Lawrence, at his option, and the Lodge to which he makes application shall immediately notify the other of said application."

12/10 Agenda

  • VI-60: Report of Trustees of the Temple.
  • VI-62: Report of Trustees of the Grand Charity Fund. Report of the Committee of Finance.
  • VI-65: Petition by Olive Branch Lodge to hold meetings alternately in Sutton and Webster, granted.
  • VI-66: Petition for Central Lodge, Webster: application withdrawn.
  • VI-68: Report of Committee on Regalia.
  • VI-70: Report of the Committee of Finance.
  • VI-71: Committee appointed to consider costs of printing diplomas.
  • VI-72: Report of the Committee of Charity.
  • VI-73: Grand Master Lewis declined re-election due to "feeble health and professional engagements"; John T. Heard elected (65 ballots) and other Grand Lodge officers elected.

Grand Constitutions Amendment Proposals

  • 03/12: VI-12; Additional amendments to Grand Constitutions proposed.
    • 06/11: VI-30: These were severally rejected.
  • 09/10: VI-40; Committee recommended no change to Grand Constitutions regarding time of meeting for the Quarterly Communications.
  • 12/10: VI-69; Amendment to change the Grand Constitutions with regard to regalia for Grand Lodge and Subordinate Lodge officers.
  • 12/30: VI-91; Amendment to change the Grand Constitutions, Part 3, Article 1, Section 1; referred.

Grand Master's Address

  • 03/12: VI-2; Review of the Grand Master's address in December 1855.
  • 12/30: VI-85; Address by Grand Master Lewis, "congratulating the Brethren on the prosperous state of the Fraternity."

Lodge By-Law Changes


Necrologies and Memorials

  • 06/11: VI-22; Death of Rt. Wor. Samuel P. P. Fay, Past Grand Master; memorial delivered by committee.

Petitions for Charters

  • 03/12: VI-6; Petition for Agawam U.D., Wareham, dispensation continued for three months.
  • 03/12: VI-7; Petition for DeWitt Clinton Lodge U.D., Sandwich; granted when by-laws are in accordance with Grand Lodge requirements.

Petitions for Dispensation for Lodges

All dispensations were mentioned in the Grand Master's Address on 12/30/1856, beginning on Page VI-85:

Petitions for Restoration of Charter

  • 03/12: VI-4; Petition to restore Social Harmony Lodge, Middleboro; returned to petitioners because provisions not yet met regarding nearest lodge.
    • 06/11: VI-18; granted. (Restored 06/12/1856)
  • 03/12: VI-8; Petition to restore Mountain Lodge, Colerain, and to remove to Shelburne Falls; granted if the nearest lodge concurs. (Restored 03/24/1856 and removed to new location.)
  • 06/11: VI-15; Petition to restore Marine Lodge, Falmouth; granted. (Restored 06/12/1856.)
  • 09/10: VI-32; Petition to restore Thomas Lodge, and remove to Palmer; granted. (Restored 09/10/1856 and removed to new location.)




(held at Masonic Temple, Boston, 12/30/1856)

  • VI-77: Opening on 12/27/1856 and adjourned.
  • VI-78: Lodge of Instruction.
  • VI-80ff: Acquisition of an armchair that had belonged to Grand Master Henry Price.
  • VI-85: Valedictory address of Grand Master Lewis.
  • VI-89: Installation of Grand Master John T. Heard, and other Grand Lodge officers.
  • VI-90: Address by Grand Master Heard including praise of his immediate predecessor.


This district layout is based on the O.P. edition of the Proceedings. However, this publication is riddled with errors and omits several lodges known to have existed in 1856; accordingly they have been conjecturally assigned to districts.
(Note: There were 10 "reorganized" Districts in 1856, plus special areas for Nantucket, Provincetown and Valparaiso Chile).

Note that District Grand Lecturers were appointed, as per the vote in Grand Lodge; the District Deputy Grand Masters were appointed, except for District 1 (Wor. William C. Martin).



From Moore's Freemason's Monthly, Vol. XVI, No. 4, January 1857, Page 114:

The following interesting report of the Deputy for the Third Masonic District of this Commonwealth, will be acceptable to our readers generally, and especially so to the Brethren of the Lodges to which it more particularly relates. And while it indicates, with great clearness, the general condition of the Lodges in the State, it will also serve to illustrate, in a degree, for the information of Brethren of other Jurisdictions, where the Deputy system has not worked favorably, something of its practical operations here :—

To the Most Worshipful Winslow Lewis, M. D., Grand Master of the M. W. Grand Lodge of Massachusetts:

As the Masonic year is now drawing to a close, I most respectfully submit to you the following report of my doings, as your Deputy for the third Masonic District, and also render you a brief account of the situation and condition of the several Lodges within my Jurisdiction —

The unusual prosperity of Freemasonry throughout the Commonwealth, is indicative of the present condition of the Order in this District. At no time since I have held your commission, have so many applied for admission, or so many been received. My returns to the R. W. G. Treasurer show a greater revenue to the G. Lodge than ever before from this District. And yet I have every reason to believe that while the increase has been rapid, and the condition of the Order flourishing beyond precedent, we need not deprecate the growth as too luxuriant. "Weeds may be springing up concealed by the golden grain, and when the harvest is gathered, evil and woe may befall us," but so long as the character of applicants is preferred to numbers, and quality is considered before quantity, as I have every reason to believe is the case in this District, we have little to fear from another "reign of terror."

An unusual interest has been felt this year among the several Lodges of this District, in having the work properly and impressively performed, and a laudable emulation has existed between several of the Lodges. The introduction of instrumental and vocal music, has added much to the beauty and impressiveness of the ritual.

There have been no difficulties in any of the Lodges. The slight misunderstanding between St. Matthew's and Grecian Lodges, as to the extent of their respective jurisdictions, has been settled to the perfect satisfaction of all concerned, and a praiseworthy feeling of friendship and brotherly love exists between these Lodges and their members.

In making my annual visits this year, I have generally been accompanied by six Past Masters, and it has sometimes happened that I have been requested to exemplify the work upon some one of the Degrees. With assistance sufficient to fill the several working stations, I have been abundantly able to comply with their requests, and, it is believed, to the entire satisfaction of the Brethren.

Corinthian Lodge, at Concord, whose Charter is dated A. L. 5797, is in a very flourishing state. At the time of my visit the Lodge worked upon the first degree, and did it to my entire satisfaction. A sumptuous entertainment was afterwards provided, where we met the members of the Lodge, with their wives and daughters. Appropriate speeches and sentiments closed the visit. This Lodge has forty-six members.

St. Paul's Lodge, at Groton. is the smallest, in point of numbers, of any in this District, and is composed mostly of quite aged Brethren. Many of the members live in the adjacent towns, and the meetings are held in the afternoon for their convenience. At the time of my visit, Br. Past Master (in 5800) Dr. John Walton, travelled seven miles on foot to attend the meeting, and I afterwards ascertained that he was one of the original applicants for the Charter in 5797, which was granted this Lodge by the M. W. Br. Paul Revere. It has but eighteen members. They are select, though few.

Aurora Lodge, at Fitchburg, is one of the most flourishing and prosperous Lodges in this District. It has forty-seven members, and this year has initiated twenty-one. The members are preparing a new hall, which they intend shall be spacious and convenient. 1 have found here some of the most worthy Masons with whom I have ever met. A great deal of interest is felt among the members, and their work shows unmistakeable marks of care, preparation and study. At my visit the Lodge expected your presence, with that of other officers of the M. W. Grand Lodge. A splendid supper was provided, at which the wives and daughters sat down, and some most impressive remarks from several Brethren from other Lodges in this District, as well as from Brethren in Fitchburg, closed the festivities.

Pentucket Lodge, at Lowell, is the largest in this District, embracing one hundred and forty-eight members. Past Master, Br. Wm. North, who has sat in the East of the Lodge for seven consecutive years, with so much honor and credit to himself and benefit to the Lodge, peremptorily declined a re-election this year. Brother Isaac Cooper is chosen his successor, and I am thoroughly convinced the Lodge will lose none of its prosperity while it is under his watchful eye. This Lodge has initiated seventeen and rejected two the past year.

St. Matthew's Lodge, at Andover, has improved much since my last visit. It has received eight initiates the past year, and performs the work with great credit to its officers. They have made great improvements to their Hall, and are preparing to make more. At my annual visit, I was very much pleased to meet about twenty Brethren from Grecian Lodge of Lawrence, whose attendance was also very gratifying to the Brethren of St. Matthew's Lodge.

Grecian Lodge, at Lawrence, has made twenty-two Masons the past year, being more than any other Lodge in this District. It has one hundred and six members and has rejected one applicant. The work is done in a most thorough and finished manner. At the time of my annual visit, I was invited with my suite, to a rich and sumptuous repast, where were representatives from most of the Lodges in the District. A pleasant hour was passed in the interchange of friendly thought and feelings.

Merrimac Lodge, at Haverhill, has made eighteen Masons the past year, and has wonderfully improved in its work since last year. At my visit, they worked on the second degree, and it was beautifully and impressively done. No Lodge in this District has changed so much for the better. Its officers are very efficient and interested, and it bids fair to be eminent among the other Lodges in the District. They are about to complete a new and splendid Hall for their meetings. A skillful choir of vocal music, (and melodeon,) added much to the ceremonies of the degree. It is the best choir I have had the pleasure of hearing in any Lodge.

Ancient York Lodge, at Lowell, the youngest chartered in the District, has eighty-seven members. It has received nineteen the past year and rejected eight applicants. This Lodge has always been considered one of the most thorough, impressive, and efficient working Lodges in the District, and at one time, since I have had charge of this District, it was visited by the Grand Master and officers, and called by them one of the best working Lodges in the State. Instead of retrograding, it is still advancing, and I know of no Lodge in the District or out of it, where all the officers are so efficient and perfect, and where the degrees are worked with so much feeling, animation, correctness and effect, as in Ancient York Lodge.

Mount Horeb Lodge, at Woburn, U. D., I visited at your request, and found it to be in a very prosperous and flourishing condition. Its work is correct, its records full and accurate, and its officers eminently qualified for their several stations. I was very much pleased with the condition of this Lodge, and the neatness of their beautiful Hall. I most cordially recommend that a Charter be given this Lodge, as I doubt not it will become an ornament to our beloved Fraternity. (Charter has since been granted.)

In the several Lodges in this District, there have been made one hundred and fourteen Masons. There have been eleven applicants rejected, of which eight were in Ancient York Lodge, Lowell, two in Pentucket Lodge, Lowell, and one in Grecian Lodge, Lawrence; which is a fair indication that they are watchful, and guard well the outer door.

I have also introduced, with very happy results, an interchange of sentiments between the Lodges in this District, by inviting the Masters and Wardens of the different Lodges to accompany me, as my suite at my official visits. You will perceive that the District is steadily advancing. And I have no hesitation in saying that the work, as exhibited in the several Lodges, is exceedingly creditable to them, and honorable to our noble and glorious institution.

All of which is respectfully submitted,
Peter Lawson
Deputy for Third Masonic District,
Lowell, December 8, 1856.


Hiram G. Clark, Boston, District Deputy Grand Master; 19 Lodges + 2 U.D.


Isaac P. Seavey, Newburyport, District Deputy Grand Master; 10 Lodges


Peter Lawson, Lowell, District Deputy Grand Master; 10 Lodges + 1 U.D.


Jonathan Greenwood, Framingham, District Deputy Grand Master; 3 Lodges


Albert Case, Hingham, District Deputy Grand Master; 9 Lodges


Horace Chenery, Worcester, District Deputy Grand Master; 14 Lodges


John Edson, New Bedford, District Deputy Grand Master; 5 Lodges + 1 U.D.


Sylvanus Baxter, Provincetown, District Deputy Grand Master; 5 Lodges


W. Franklin Weston, Dalton, District Deputy Grand Master; 8 Lodges


Charles Mattoon, Greenfield, District Deputy Grand Master; 5 Lodges


Benjamin Brown, Nantucket, Special Deputy for Nantucket; 1 Lodge


Joseph P. Johnson, Provincetown, Special Deputy for Provincetown; 1 Lodge


C.T. Ward, Valparaiso, Special Deputy for Valparaiso; 1 Lodge + 1 U.D.

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