- 1 MONTGOMERY LODGE
- 2 REFERENCES IN GRAND LODGE PROCEEDINGS
- 2.1 ANNIVERSARIES
- 2.2 VISITS BY GRAND MASTER
- 2.3 BY-LAW CHANGES
- 2.4 HISTORY
- 2.4.1 125TH ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION, SEPTEMBER 1922
- 2.4.2 150TH ANNIVERSARY HISTORY, SEPTEMBER 1947
- 2.4.3 HISTORY AT HALL DEDICATION, JUNE 1963
- 2.4.4 NOTES IN THE CENTENARY HISTORY OF CHARLES RIVER LODGE, APRIL 1971
- 2.4.5 175TH ANNIVERSARY HISTORY, SEPTEMBER 1972
- 2.5 OTHER
- 2.6 EVENTS
- 2.6.1 OFFICER LIST, MARCH 1818
- 2.6.2 HALL DEDICATION, MARCH 1818
- 2.6.3 OFFICER LIST, JANUARY 1826
- 2.6.4 OFFICER LIST, DECEMBER 1826
- 2.6.5 ELECTION OF OFFICERS, DECEMBER 1830
- 2.6.6 OFFICER LIST, DECEMBER 1831
- 2.6.7 ST. JOHN'S DAY, JUNE 1855
- 2.6.8 INSTALLATION, NOVEMBER 1866
- 2.6.9 LADIES' NIGHT, JUNE 1879
- 2.6.10 RECEPTION, JANUARY 1881
- 2.6.11 FRATERNAL VISIT, APRIL 1884
- 2.6.12 GRAND MASTER VISIT, SEPTEMBER 1889
- 2.6.13 PAST MASTERS' NIGHT, MAY 1914
- 2.6.14 AWARD OF HONORARY MEMBERSHIP, FEBRUARY 1919
- 2.6.15 150TH ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION, SEPTEMBER 1947
- 2.7 GRAND LODGE OFFICERS
- 2.8 OTHER BROTHERS
- 2.9 DISTRICTS
- 2.10 LINKS
Chartered By: Paul Revere
Charter Date: 09/16/1797 II-108
Precedence Date: 09/16/1797
Current Status: Active
Blackstone River Lodge merged here, 06/12/1997.
MEMBER LIST, 1802
From Vocal Companion and Masonic Register, Boston, 1802, Part II, Page 23:
- R. W. Amos Turner, M.
- W. Samuel Druce, S. W.
- W. Abner Morse, J. W.
- Amos Hawes, Sec.
- Eliab Wight, Tr.
- Willard Boyd, S. D.
- Job Jenks, J. D.
- Nathaniel Adams, Steward.
- Eli Bates, Steward.
- Benjamin Ware, Jr., Tiler.
No. of Members, 50.
- William Green
- Warren Ware
- Mason Shaw
need correct list of living PMs
- James Mann, 1796, 1797
- Abijah Richardson, 1798
- Amos Turner, 1799-1801
- Abner Morse, 1802-1810; SN
- Calvin Cutler, 1811, 1812
- Ellihu Cutler, 1813
- Ethan Cobb, 1814
- Samuel L. Scammell, 1815, 1816
- Caleb Sayles, 1817, 1850-1852
- Gilbet Clark, 1818
- John C. Scammell, 1819, 1820
- Hambert Barber, 1821-1823
- Thomas Stanley Mann, 1824; SN
- Leonard Hazleton, 1825-1828
- John G. Metcalf, 1829-1832
- Samuel Payson, 1833-1844
- Isaac Kebbe, Jr., 1845, 1846
- Daniel C. Fisher, 1847, 1848
- Samuel Haskell, 1849
- Nathan Burr, 1850, 1854
- Orison Underwood, 1854, 1855
- Andrew Atwood, 1856
- Hamilton B. Staples, 1857-1859
- John S. Cox, 1860
- Chester L. Chamberlain, 1860; SN
- Samuel H. Gardner, 1861
- Henry C. Skinner, 1862, 1863; SN
- George E. Stacy, 1864, 1865; SN
- Alfred A. Burrell, 1866-1868, 1881
- Ezra F. Holbrook, 1869, 1870
- Julius M. Woods, 1871, 1872
- James M. Woods, 1873, 1874
- Thomas C. Eastman, 1876, 1877
- Daniel Reed, 1877, 1878
- S. Alden Eastman, 1879, 1880
- William H. Adair, 1882-1884
- Herbert W. Lull, 1885, 1886; SN
- Clifford A. Cook, 1887, 1888; SN
- Frank E. Mathewson, 1889, 1890
- Clarence A. Sumner, 1891
- Herbert A. Greeley, 1892
- Herbert S. Eldredge, 1893, 1894; Mem
- George L. Maynard, 1895, 1896
- Arthur W. Vant, 1897
- C. Fred Butterworth, 1898, 1899
- Frederick A. Gould, 1900, 1901
- Edwin J. Westcott, 1902, 1903
- Frank A. Whipple, 1904, 1905
- Clarence A. Lilley, 1906, 1907
- Horace A. Brown, 1908
- Harry A. Billings, 1909, 1910; N
- George W. Billings, 1911
- Joseph L. Remington, 1912, 1913
- Frank L. Wright, 1914, 1915
- Gilbert C. Eastman, 1916
- Bret N. Williams, 1917
- Frank Roy Hixon, 1918; N
- George E. Thayer, 1919
- Francis W. Sanderson, 1920
- James H. Garland, 1921
- Elbert W. Marso, 1922
- John A. McKenzie, 1923
- Charles H. Earnsby, 1924
- Harold L. Henderson, 1925
- Leslie C. Childs, 1926, 1942; N
- Charles H. Knights, 1927
- L. Blaine Libby, 1928
- Albert A. Hersey, 1929
- Eugene L. Tinkham, 1930
- Edward F. Blood, 1931
- Frederick H. Gould, 1932
- William Ferguson, 1933; Mem
- William Wrenn, 1934
- Victor York, 1935
- Chester O. Avery, 1936
- Henry P. Clough, 1937
- Merton E. Tinkham, 1938
- John M. Washburn, 1939
- Albert H. Andrew, 1940, 1941; N
- John M. Allen, 1943
- Emerson J. Robinson, 1944, 1945
- Roy S. Conway, 1946
- Charles J. Mongeon, 1947
- Clifton L. Smith, 1948
- Samuel F. Mitchell, 1949
- Arthur E. Midgley, 1950
- Harry C. York, 1951
- Kelsie E. Townsend, Sr., 1952
- Sarkis Barsamian, 1953
- Clarence E. Varney, 1954
- Richard L. Childs, 1955
- Warren F. Kunz, Sr., 1956
- Clarence L. Carlson, 1957
- Kenneth L. Phipps, 1958
- Arthur S. Wilson, 1959
- George M. Carlson, 1960
- Robert H. Mills, 1961
- William S. Elliott, 1962; N
- Richard W. Ambler, 1963
- Richard C. Varney, 1964
- Homer O. Bartlett, 1965
- Richard N. Ashcroft, 1966
- Stanley E. Farr, 1967
- Freeman L. Hammond, 1968
- Alfred L. Gaulin, 1969
- Lloyd R. Griswold, 1970
- Robert B. Taylor, 1971
- Robert J. Rondeau, 1972
- Lavern F. Mitchell, 1973
- Calvin F. Bosma, 1974
- Roger W. Thibault, 1975
- George A. Shepard, 1976
- William A. L. Dowden, 1977
- Paul R. Levesque, 1978
- Leo L. Beauregard, 1979, 1980
- Stewart R. Holbrook, 1981-1983; PDDGM
- Dwight L. Watson, Jr., 1984
- James A. Turner, 1985
- Richard G. Bearnheart, 1986
- Todd E. Smith, 1987
- Michael A. Farrer, 1988
- Ronald E. Howland, 1989
- Paul L. Mangini, 1990
- George A. Frederick, 1991, 1992
- William E. Elztroth, 1993
- Manuel Snyderman, 1994
- Robert M. Booth, 1995; PDDGM
- Jon E. Hollister, 1996, 1999
- Dale F. Mortensen, 2000
- Vincent S. Faraci, 2001
- Truman G. Hix, 1997; PDDGM
- Michael F. Moroney, 1998, 2007
- Edward M. Iacovelli, 2002; DDGM
- James M. Cunningham, 2003
- Donald Patrick Dreier, 2004
- Vincent M. Squiciari, 2005
- Kristoffer T. Tronerud, 2006
- Robert C. Winterhalter, 2008; N
- Philip B. Evans, 2009, 2010, 2012
- Blair A. Belcher, 2011
- Joel E. Cohen, 2013
REFERENCES IN GRAND LODGE PROCEEDINGS
- Petition for Charter: 1797
- Petition for Restoration of Charter: 1847
- Consolidation Petition (with Blackstone River Lodge): 1997
- 1897 (Centenary)
- 1922 (125th Anniversary)
- 1937 (140th Anniversary)
- 1947 (150th Anniversary)
- 1972 (175th Anniversary)
- 1998 (200th Anniversary)
VISITS BY GRAND MASTER
- 1860 (Lewis; Hall Dedication)
- 1879 (Welch; Hall dedication; Special Communication)
- 1881 (Lawrence)
- 1889 (Endicott; see below)
- 1897 (Hutchinson; Centenary; Special Communication)
- 1908 (Blake)
- 1922 (Acting Grand Master Ferrell; 125th Anniversary; Special Communication)
- 1937 (Allen; 140th Anniversary)
- 1947 (Wragg; 150th Anniversary; Special Communication)
- 1963 (Osgood; Hall dedication; Special Communication)
- 1972 (Deputy Grand Master Melanson; 175th Anniversary; Special Communication)
- 1978 (Melanson)
- 1997 (A. Johnson; Consolidation; Special Communication)
- 1998 (A. Johnson; 200th Anniversary; Special Communication)
- 1897 (Centenary History, 1897-216)
- 1922 (125th Anniversary History, 1922-340; see below)
- 1941 (Notes in the 75th Anniversary History of Excelsior Lodge, 1941-107)
- 1945 (Notes in the 75th Anniversary History of Charles River Lodge, 1945-121)
- 1947 (150th Anniversary History, 1947-268; see below)
- 1963 (History at Hall Dedication, 1963-172; see below)
- 1966 (Notes in the Centenary History of Excelsior Lodge, 1966-172; see below)
- 1971 (Notes in the Centenary History of Charles River Lodge, 1971-172)
- 1972 (175th Anniversary History, 1972-294; see below)
125TH ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION, SEPTEMBER 1922
From New England Craftsman, Vol. XVIII, No. 1, October 1922, Page 22:
Montgomery lodge, Masons, celebrated its 125th anniversary during the week of September 11th, the exercises opening Sunday with divine services at the Universalist church which was attended by 110 members of the lodge and visitors from the 23d District. Milford Commandery, K. T., furnished escort, having 55 in line. Rev. Harry Fay Foster, Chaplain of the lodge, gave an inspiring sermon on the necessity for unceasing labor, in the business world, for humanity and for God. Music was provided by a quartet.
Monday afternoon a special communication of the lodge was opened at 4 o'clock when the Grand Lodge officials and Governor Channing H. Cox were formally received. Grand Master Arthur D. Prince is now in China and Dudley H. Ferrell, Deputy Grand Master, represented him. The program included music by the Lotus quartet, a historical address for the past 25 years by Past Master George W. Billings and remarks by the distinguished visitors.
At 7 o'clock the company with ladies assembled at the Town Hall for a turkey supper for which nearly 500 covers were laid. Past Master Clifford A. Cook, who is also a past District Deputy, presided as toastmaster, and the program included music by Marsh's orchestra and the Lotus quartet, and the following toast: "The Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of Massachusetts A Fraternity," Acting Grand Master Dudley H. Ferrell; "Montgomery Lodge: Its Anniversary," Past Master Herbert W. Lull of Newport, R. I., who is past Deputy; "Montgomery lodge: Its Symbolism and Teachings," Rev. Dr. Allen E. Cross; "Montgomery lodge: In the Community," Wendall Williams; Montgomery Lodge: The Mother Lodge and its Descendants," Past Deputy Wilbur A. Wood of Hopkinton; "Montgomery Lodge: In the Twenty-third Masonic District," Deputy Henry M. Cutler of Holliston; "Freemasonry: A Brotherhood," Rev. Ernest L. Loomis; "Our Commonwealth: A. Community," Governor Channing H. Cox.
A souvenir program had been prepared for the occasion, containing on the cover the steel engraving of Montgomery used for the 100th anniversary, the program of the anniversary exercises, a list of present officers, the anniversary committee and the past masters of the last 25 years, and a cut of the first meeting place, the "Dr. Miller" residence, still standing in Rockville.
Montgomery Lodge, which is named for General Richard Montgomery of Revolutionary fame, was instituted September 16, 1797, under a charter signed by Paul Revere as Grand Master, and the original charter is still in good condition and is a treasured relic of the lodge. The first meeting of the lodge at which officers were elected was held July 10, 1797, the original name chosen was King Hiram Lodge, but it was later found that there was another lodge in the state bv that name. The lodge had eighteen charter members and its present membership is 464. In the 125 years it has had 68 Masters, 10 of whom have served as district deputy grand masters, and 23 of whom are now living.
Montgomery Lodge has had 11 meeting places: the Dr. Miller residence until April 10, 1798, when it removed to the Oliver Pond tavern in Franklin. After a year here, Masons' Hall, Franklin, was built for its use and here meetings were held until December 7, 1809 when removal was made to Levi Adams' hall in West Medway. After nine years the lodge moved to Mason's Hall, West Medway which was occupied for nearly 19 years, the period covering the anti-Masonic movement. From June 3i, 1837 to March 26, 1845, Hathon's Tavern in Medway Village was occupied. For about a year, or until March 18, 1846, the lodge met at the residence of William White in Medway, when removal was made to Masons' Hall, later the Hirsh & Park straw factory. After nearly seven years here the lodge removed to Milford, where from 1852 to 1860 the Old Town House was the meeting place. From 1860 to 1879, meetings were held in Church Block and in February, 1879, the Lodge moved to its present quarters in Exchange block. Montgomery lodge is the parent of Charles River Lodge of West Medway, Mt. Hollis of Holliston and John Warren of Hopkinton.
The exercises were thoroughly enjoyed by all who attended and reflected great credit upon those who prepared them.
The committee in charge included James H. Garland, E. W. Marso, John A. McKenzie, Frederic A. Gould, H. A. Billings, Frank A. Whipple, Rev. H. F. Fister, Herbert S. Eldredge and F. Roy Hixon.
The visitors from other lodges included: land; Wm. Sterling, Prescumpscott, No. Vincent J. Hobart, St. John's, Dalmiro, Scot-Windgam, Me., A. Mitchell, Truro, N. S.; C. A. Pierce, Overseas, Providence; H. L. Slayton, United Brethren, Marlboro; A. L. Atwood, Meridian, Natick; Geo. W. Perkins, North Star, Richmond, Vt.; Fred J. Cormier, Aurora, Fitchburg; Arthur M. Hogan, North Star, Ashland, Julius Thirn, 61 of Wilkes-Barre, Pa.; (a representative of) Caleb Butler, Ayer; Chas. S. Given, Mizpah, Cambridge; Rev. Norman Brighton. Shiloh, Fargo, N. D.; J. H. Spencer, A. S. Whipple, A. S. Richardson, A. M. Proctor, Granite, Whitinsville; E. M. Eldredge, W. H. Sheldon, C. C. Smith, A. L. Kingsbury, W. A. Wood, W. R. Read, John Warren, Hopkinton: Forrest S. Clark, A. S. Pond, A. M. Cutlar, J. B Parkin, John O. Noble, Fred B. Wright. Ralph S. Parker, M. K. Butler, Mt. Hollis, Holliston; W. G. Bacon, R. W. Huntington, G. A. Greenwood, A. W. Robinson, Excelsior, Franklin; George R. Howarth. Charles River, Medway; W. W. True, R. S. Thomas, G. Bailey, Franklin, Grafton.
125TH ANNIVERSARY HISTORY, SEPTEMBER 1922
From Proceedings, Page 1922-340:
History of Montgomery Lodge Since 1897,
By Worshipful George W. Billings.
I find myself in the position of the young man who sought a job with a lyceum bureau. The manager asked him if he had had any experience going before audiences, and he replied, "No, the only time I ever gave a public address all the audience went before I did." The Worshipful Master insists that a historical address is a necessary evil of all anniversary exercises, but I know that most of you would rather spend the next twenty minutes in the anteroom. The record of the first one hundred years is fully covered in the centennial history. (A very excellent History of Montgomery Lodge was prepared by Worshipful Clarence A. Sumner at its Centennial Anniversary and published at that time. A copy may be found in the library of the Grand Lodge.) Believing that a resume of the past twenty-five years, filed as a sort of index to the fourteen hundred pages of records from 1897 to the present date, is of infinitely more value than a mass of generalities on the glories and achievements of this venerable Lodge. I have prepared this paper in that form, and intend to read therefrom only a few comparative statistics and some of the leading events of the past twenty-five years.
Today Montgomery Lodge celebrates her one hundred and twenty-fifth anniversary. Twenty-five years ago the membership was two hundred and seventy-two; today the membership is four hundred and sixty-four, forty-three per cent of the gain having been made in the last three years. Since August 31, 1897, one hundred and sixty-four deaths have been recorded, eight of which have occurred the past year.
During the centennial year the current expenses of the Lodge were $2,192.43, including $800 for anniversary expenses. The last Treasurer's report shows an expense account of $4,669.40, and the average annual running expense of the Lodge for twenty-four years was $2,239.69. In 1897 the cash on hand was $2,061.02; Oct. 1, 1921, it was $6,673.04, with $1,477.96 in the permanent fund and $6,220.28 in the building fund and Bancroft fund combined, the last figures being the amount available for that happy day in the future when Montgomery Lodge will own a Temple of its own.
Seventeen Masters have occupied the Oriental chair during the past quarter of a century and a brief sketch of each will be found at the close of this resume.
The Lodge has had fifteen Deputies, three of whom are members of Montgomery Lodge, R. W. Charles Frederick Butterworth, who was appointed in 1901 and only served a few months owing to removal from the state; R. W. Herbert S. Eldredge, who succeeded him for the remainder of 1901 and was appointed for 1902 and 1903, and R. W. Harry A. Billings in 1920 and 1921. The present Deputy, whom we are pleased to greet in his official capacity for the first time today, is Rt. Wor. Henry M. Cutler, of Mt. Hollis Lodge.
I find that at every installation exercise of this period, except in 1903, when Deputy Eldredge officiated, Rt. Wor. George E. Stacy has acted as the installing officer. In 1905 he was assisted by five other Past Masters, and in 1916 by ten of the Past Masters. I was also impressed by the large proportion of the Past Masters who are recorded as present at the various meetings.
The records show that thirteen, and possibly fourteen, of the charter members of this Lodge served in the Revolutionary Army and that about fifty members were in the Union service during the Civil War. Two were in the Spanish War, and today we point with pride to the honor roll of thirty-four during the late war with Germany. The list on January 1, 1920, contained the following names:
- Priv. Wm. J. Ackerley
- Capt. Joseph B. Bancroft
- Capt. Vance W. Batchelor
- Music. Edwin Bath, Jr.
- Corp. Ralph S. Bragg
- Capt. Edwin B. Callahan
- Pharm. Mate John T. Collins
- Seaman Fred W. Clarridge
- Capt. Elbert M. Crockett
- Cadet John J. Curley
- Sergt. Mortimore C. Dennett (since deceased)
- Maj. Herman L. Dillingham
- Capt. Gilbert C. Eastman
- Lt. Col. Stuart C. Godfrey
- Priv. Emory E. Grayson
- 2d Lt. Forrest Grayson
- 2d Lt. George M. Grayson
- Corp. Richard A. Grayson
- Priv. Wm. H. Grayson
- Priv. Thomas C. Griffiths
- Sergt. Alfred P. Henderson
- Sergt. Harold L. Henderson
- Mast. Eng. Arthur J. Hurst
- Capt. Robt. C. Kinney
- Hosp. App. Elroy L. McKenzie
- Capt. Wm. G. Pond
- 1st CI. Elect. Wm. H. Scott
- Priv. Halbert K. Struthers
- Capt. Elmer E. Thomas
- Priv. Herbert E. Ward
- Sergt. Ralph H. Ward
- Mac. Mate Win G. Welch
- Priv. Allie Werber
- Sergt. John Mayhew Wood
From January 1, 1920, no further military record was kept, but the following eighteen of the new members since that date were former service men:
- Sgt. 1st CI. Ferdinand S. Adams
- George M. Barrows
- Frank K. Behrens (SA.T.C.)
- Sgt. 1st CI. Albert S. Coleman
- Sgt. 1st CI. Earl G. Crockett
- Capt. Eben S. Draper
- Harold E. Gaskell (navy)
- Donald W. Goodnow (SA.T.C.)
- Charles H. Knights Napier Scribner (navy)
- 1st Lt. & Chap. Ernest L. Loomis
- Donald A. McCaslin (navy)
- Sgt. 1st CI. Walter B. McFarland
- Em. F. Northrop (navy)
- Samuel S. Olivant
- Karl H. Proctor (naval aviation)
- Asa L. Saunders
- Sgt. 1st Cl. Carlton E. Scott
The Centennial History records the purchase, February 25, 1899, by Wor. S. Alden Eastman and Bros. Horace A. Brown and George W. Ellis of the Bainbridge Hayward property on Main Street, formerly occupied by old Charity Lodge, and states that "the purchase was understood to be in the interests of the Masonic bodies in Milford, and probably a new Temple will be erected on the site in the not far distant future." Alas for the hopes of twenty-three years ago! The committee on the purchase of the property reported on August 17, 1899, and again on October 12, but owing to a difference of opinion over the purchase price action was indefinitely postponed. The report shows an estimated annual expense of $1,125, including interest on a $10,000 mortgage and an estimated gross income from the property of $1,525. Without taking sides in the old controversy we of the younger generation may at least regret the action which resulted in the loss of a Masonic Temple here.
On October 19, 1902, interest in new quarters was revived. a building fund being created and provision made to add $200 thereto annually from the general fund. On March 4 and June 3, 1908, a committee on remodelling our present quarters made a comprehensive report and submitted plans for proposed changes, particularly in the banquet hall and rooms for social purposes, recommending that the owners be asked to make these changes at an estimated expense of $1,075, the Lodge to pay an annual rental of $600, including heat, and take a ten-year lease, with a privilege of renewal for ten years. The recommendation was deemed unwise and visionary and, by a vote of thirty-four to eleven, action was indefinitely postponed. Had the plan been carried out the Lodge would now be paying $600 a year instead of $900, with a lease of seven years still to run, would have had improved facilities to cater to the social life of the Lodge for the past thirteen years, and would not be facing today the uncertainties resulting from the possible sale of the building at any time in the settlement of the estate of the Newcomb heirs. On April 21, 1910, the Master referred to a proposed new block on Main Street, with a tentative offer to duplicate the desirable features of our present quarters provided the Lodge would agree to take a lease. Before the Committee appointed to consider the proposition could report, the Lodge settled the question automatically by voting on May 19 to renew the lease of the present quarters for five years. Matters drifted until January 6, 1913, when a proposition was reported to provide club quarters on the second floor of this building. Question was raised as to the legal right of the Lodge to use its funds for this purpose, and while it was voted to adopt the report of the committee no action resulted on account of the strong opposition. On February 1, 1917, December 12, 1918, April 10, 1919, January 1, 1920, and June 8, 1922, committees on alterations or new quarters have been chosen to consider the problem, with no results thus far. Is the difficulty due to imperfect designs upon the trestle board, or to discord among the workmen?
The following is a chronological resume of the principal events of the past twenty-five years, only a few of which I shall read at this time:
- October 6, 1897, Frank H. Doland elected honorary life member for favors received. Bible now in use on altar presented by Harriet A. Newcomb.
- November 4, 1897, official visit of Deputy Rufus H. Hopkins.
- March 31, 1898, Milford Commandery granted use of small hall as armory. Presentation to Lodge of the Past Master's diploma of Wor. Elihu Cutler, the sixth Master of this Lodge.
- November 29, 1898, District exemplification of Twentieth District here, Montgomery working the second degree.
- October 11, 1899, Official visit of Deputy Jarvis B. Woolford. Work on third degree assisted by the Weber quartet.
- December 14, 1899, Observance of the one hundredth anniversary of death of George Washington. Address by Wor. C. A. Sumner and adoption of resolutions on Washington's distinguished service to the Craft. On the following Sunday the Lodge repaired to the Universalist church where Rev. Bro. Elbert W. Whitney gave a eulogy of Washington.
- June 7, 1900, Committee named to arrange for an illuminating device in front of hall to designate Lodge meetings. No record of any report of action.
- September 8, 1900, Invitation received to the twenty-fifth wedding anniversary of Reverend and Mrs. E. W Whitney at Pearl St. Universalist Church. Committee named to secure suitable present.
- October 4, 1900, Two door alarms presented by Bro. James S. Knights, of Waukegan, Illinois.
- October 24, 1900, Death of Eben Williams, twenty days after election as Junior Warden.
- November 14, 1900, Official visit of Deputy Jarvis B. Woolford. Work on third degree, the Weber quartet assisting.
- January 31, 1901, First meeting of new century. Full list recorded of all present, showing thirteen officers, six Past Masters, sixteen members, and six visitors, total, forty-one.
- April 11, 1901, For the first time in the history of Montgomery Lodge a father raised his son to the Sublime Degree of Master Mason, Wor. Bro. George L. Maynard raising his son, Arthur L. Maynard. Wor. Bro. Maynard was our Centennial Master.
- May 30, 1901, voted to wire chandelier for electricity. Bill for work, $57.50.
- June 23, 1901, St. John's day service at Pine St. Universalist Church, Rev. Bro. E. W. Whitney, pastor. Escort by Milford Commandery.
- July 25, 1901, Bro. Joseph B. Bancroft presented $1,000 to the Lodge, Chapter, and Commandery, as a building fund.
- September 18, 1901, Memorial service for Bro. William McKinley, late President of the United States. Addresses by Bro. Gen. William P. Draper and Rev. Bro. E. W. Whitney. Music by Harvard quartet. Resolutions by Rt. Wor. George E. Stacy, deploring the spirit of anarchy which was at the root of the assassination. Attendance, members, one hundred and twelve, visitors, thirty-eight.
- September 26, 1901, Bancroft Masonic Building fund created with $333.34, Montgomery's share of the Bancroft donation. By the vote "the principal and interest to be used whenever the Lodge so votes, to purchase real estate or erect a building to be used in whole or in part for Masonic purposes." (The fund is now about $1,325.) Bro. Bancroft proposed for honorary life membership.
- November 20, 1901, Official visit of Deputy Herbert S. Eldredge, who, in behalf of forty-six Hopedale Masons, presented a set of silver altar lights. Of the contributors twenty-five were members of Montgomery Lodge and twenty-one were members of other Lodges. Work third degree. Attendance about four hundred.
- June 19, 1902, Presentation of a Chaplain's jewel to Rev. Bro. E. W. Whitney, appointed Chaplain in 1893, by Deputy Eldredge. At the same meeting it was voted to buy a new carpet for the Lodge-room (the one now in use and which cost $497.13.)
- August 14, 1902, Committee appointed to make plans for increasing the building fund.
- September 12,1902, District exemplification, Montgomery giving the lecture on the first section of the third degree. Grand Lecturer Charles M. Avery and Deputy Herbert S. Eldridge in charge.
- November 19, 1902, Official visit of Deputy Herbert S. Eldredge. Work on third degree, assisted by Odell Orchestra of Boston. Three hundred and fifty present.
- January 8, 1903, Milford Council, R. & S. M., instituted November 20, 1902, was granted the use of the Masonic quarters at an annual rental of $50, plus proportionate share of light and heat.
- February 5, 1903, A communication was read by Wor. C. F. Butterworth, signed by forty-five Hopedale Masons, subscribing $130 to establish an organ fund. This sum was increased to about $400 by further contributions solicited by a committee, and the organ was purchased during the summer of 1903.
- June 21, 1903, St. John's day service at Universalist church, one of the best services since the first St. John's Day exercises of the Lodge in 1803 at Franklin. Milford Commandery furnished escort, and the Lodges at West Medway, Hopkinton, and Holliston, were guests.
- July 9, 1903, following the sentence of Bro. Walter S. V. Cook to State Prison for forgery, twelve prominent Brethren of the Lodge preferred charges against him for defrauding Master Masons. The matter was placed in the hands of the Grand Lodge December 31, and on March 9, 1904, Bro. Cook was expelled from the rights and privileges of Masonry. Notice of the Grand Lodge action was read at the communication of Montgomery Lodge March 31, 1904.
- November 5, 1903, committee appointed with full power to see that necessary electric lights be furnished for hall at an expense not to exceed $90.
- November 18,1903, official visit of Deputy H. S. Eldredge, Work on third degree, the Weber quartet assisting. Past Master's diploma was presented to Wor. Bro. E. J. Wescott. Presentation by officers of the Medway Historical Society of the original ballot box of Montgomery Lodge, in use from 1809 to 1852. The records give interesting details of the presentation and of the circumstances under which this valuable relic of the early history of our Lodge came into the possession of the Medway Historical Society. For a number of years the ballot box was displayed in the East near the Master's chair and was recently removed to a place on the wall of an adjoining apartment.
- December 17, 1903, special communication to observe the anniversary of the birth of St. John the Evangelist and the centennial of the first St. John's day celebration of this Lodge at Franklin December 28, 1803. The records of this earlier meeting were read, and Rev. Bro. Elbert W. Whitney gave the address.
- February 25, 1904, additional insurance of $1,000 placed on Lodge property.
- April 28, 1904, thanks voted to all who contributed for the new clock.
- June 26, 1904, St. John's day service at Milford Methodist Church on invitation of Rev. W. F. Lawf ord.
- July 21, 1904, voted to decorate the Masonic quarters for Old Home week and to keep hall open for the entertainment of visiting Brethren.
- August 8, 1904, Special Communication in honor of Bros. James S. Knights and Frank H. Doland, honorary life members. Bro. Knights presented the Lodge a beautiful silver trowel and Brp. Doland a framed picture of himself. Bro. Knights died in 1911 and Bro. Doland about three months later.
- November 10, 1904, official visit of Deputy Almond G. Partridge. Work third degree.
- December 13, 1904, Masonic funeral in this hall for Bro. William A. Hayward.
- April 19, 1905, District exemplification, Montgomery working the second and third sections of the third degree. Grand Lecturer Frederic L. Putnam and Deputy Almond G. Partridge in charge.
- May 18, 1905, invitation from Charles River Lodge to attend divine service at West Medway Congregational church June 25.
September 7, 1905, Resolutions adopted on the removal of Wor. E. J. Wescott to California, and an engrossed copy sent to Wor. Bro. Wescott.
- November 15, 1905, official visit of Deputy A. G. Partridge. Work second degree.
- May 3, 1906, contribution of $100 voted for the relief of California Brethren who suffered in the great earthquake.
- September 27, 1906, voted to instal electric lights in anteroom and banquet hall.
November 14, 1906, official visit of Deputy George R. Winsor. Work third degree. Presentation by Bro. Rufus H. Fairbanks, of Charles River Lodge, of a District Deputy Grand Master's diploma, once the property of Rt. Wor. Abner Morse, the first District Deputy for this District in 1813 and the fourth Master of Montgomery Lodge. Notice given of the death of Rt. Wor. Almond G. Partridge, Deputy in 1904 and 1905.
- January 25, 1907, Past Masters' Night, twelve of the eighteen living Past Masters occupying the chairs for work on the third degree. Attendance, two hundred.
- June 9, 1907, Divine service at Upton Methodist Church on invitation of Rev. Bro. Edward Marsh.
- March 8, 1908, Divine service at Universalis! Church with address by Rev. Bro. E. W. Whitney on General Montgomery. This was the first of a series of annual addresses given by Rev. Bro. Whitney on prominent members of the Craft, the later services being held in our own quarters as follows:
- March 13, 1910, "Paul Revere";
- March 19, 1911, when Most Worshipful J. Albert Blake and suite were special guests, "General Joseph Warren";
- April 28, 1912, "Major Henry Price";
- April 27, 1913, "George Washington";
- April 26, 1914, "The Ideal Free Mason";
- April 25, 1915, "Benjamin Franklin." At all these meetings divine services were conducted by the Chaplain and Assistant Chaplain and special musical programs were given.
- November 11, 1907, official visit of Deputy John M. Barber. Work third degree. Attendance, members, seventy-eight, visitors, one hundred and sixty-three.
- April 3, 1908, Fraternal visit of Grand Master J. Albert Blake. History repeated itself. Wor. S. Alden Eastman raised his son, Gilbert C. Eastman. Address by the Grand Master and music by the Apollo quartet. About three hundred present, including visitors from forty Lodges.
- May 14, 1908, Voted $100 to the relief of Masonic Brethren who suffered in the Chelsea fire.
- July 2, 1908, practically the first meeting since 1876 when the records do not bear the signature of Charles E. Whitney as Secretary. Bro. Whitney was critically ill, and died November 17, 1908, after serving the Lodge for thirty-two years as Secretary.
- November 19, 1908, Masonic funeral for Bro. Charles E. Whitney, after which the Lodge was called from labor to refreshment, reconvening in the evening for the official visit of Deputy Seymour J. Knowles. Work second section of third degree on acting candidate. Members, seventy-two, visitors, one hundred and two.
- December 3, 1908. From this date to February 4, 1909, the records bear the signature of Rt. Wor. Herbert S. Eldredge as Acting Secretary.
- December 31, 1908, Honorary life membership voted to Rev. Bro. E. W. Whitney, our Chaplain, on his removal to Waltham after seventeen years of service. Wor. Clarence A. Sumner elected Secretary and installed February 4, 1909.
- September 23, 1909, official visit of Deputy Seymour A. Knowles. Work third degree, assisted by Schubert quartet. Past Master's diploma presented to Wor. H. A. Brown. Members, sixty-five; visitors, ninety.
- October 28, 1909, framed picture of Paul Revere, who signed our charter as Grand Master, presented by Bro. Robert Allen Cook. New By-Laws adopted. The recommendation of the committee to change the regular communications to a fixed date instead of the moon schedule was defeated by a large vote.
- November 18, 1909, Rev. Bro. Dr. T. Corwin Watkins appointed Chaplain to succeed Rev. Bro. E. W. Whitney.
- December 23, 1909, one-third of a bequest of $1,000 to the Masonic bodies by the late Bro. Joseph B. Bancroft, who died October 25, 1909, was added to the Bancroft fund.
- January 20, 1910, Honorary life membership voted to Rt. Wor. George E.. Stacy and Rt. Wor. Henry C. Skinner. Following the record of this meeting is an elaborate historical sketch and memorial page to our late Bro. Gen. William F. Draper.
- April 27, 1910, district exemplification, Bros. Joseph L. Remington and Frank L. Wright, later Masters of this Lodge, giving the lecture of the first and second sections of the third degree. Attendance, two hundred and eighty-two.
- September 16, 1910, official visit of Deputy Arthur W. Fairbanks and one hundred and thirteenth anniversary of the Institution of Montgomery Lodge. Work third degree, assisted by Adelphi quartet. Presentation of Past Master's jewel and diploma to Wor. Harry A. Billings. Members, seventy-seven; visitors, sixty-six.
- October 30, 1910, Divine service at Upton Congregational Church, Rev. O. J. Billings, pastor. Attendance, fifty.
- November 10, 1910, Committee appointed to solicit subscriptions for the Masonic Home at Charlton.
- January 12, 1911, illustrated lecture on Scandinavia by Rev. Bro. F. A. Warfield. Presentation of picture of our late Secretary, Bro. Charles B. Whitney.
- April 23, 1911, Divine Service at Milford Methodist Church, Rev. Bro. Dr. T. C. Watkins, Pastor. Members present, forty-four; Knights Templars, twenty-four.
- May 9, 1911, Past Masters' Night, thirteen of eighteen living Past Masters occupying the chairs for third degree. Roll call exercises, probably the first in the history of the Lodge, one hundred and fourteen of the three hundred and forty members responding in person and fourteen by letter.
- May 17, 1911, Officers of Charles River Lodge occupy the chairs for work on second degree. Montgomery Lodge returned the visit June 16, the officers working the third degree for Charles River Lodge.
- October 19, 1911, Official visit of Deputy Arthur B. Fairbanks. Work third degree; the Lotus quartet assisting. Collection of $41.52 for the Masonic Home. Members, one hundred and six; visitors, one hundred and four.
- November 2, 1911, voted to instal a new lighting system as per committee's report at a cost not to exceed $125.
- August 13, 1912, special meeting for the funeral of Bro. Charles E. Kemp, at Lowell. Following the opening a delegation, headed by Senior Warden J. L. Remington, proceeded by automobile to Lowell and after the funeral escorted the body to Laconia, N. H., where burial was made with Masonic honors. Members of Pentucket Lodge of Lowell, assisted.
- October 17, 1912, official visit of Deputy Marshall L. Perrin. Work third degree; the Lotus quartet assisting. Past Master's jewel presented to Wor. George W. Billings. Members present, one hundred and twenty-five; visitors, sixty-five.
- January 29, 1913, officers of Charles River Lodge occupy chairs for third degree. Deputy Marshall L. Perrin of the Twenty-third District and Deputy H. W. Shaw of the Twenty-second, special guests. Past Master's diploma presented Wor. George W. Billings by Deputy Perrin.
- May 15, 1913, illustrated talk on trip to West and to Toronto by Wor. C. A. Sumner.
- June 22, 1913, Divine service at Trinity Church, Rev. A. J. Watson, Pastor. Attendance, forty-seven.
- August 14, 1913, presentation of an embroidered Masonic apron, formerly the property of our late centenarian, Bro. Marcus Richardson, 1781 to 1881. Voted to have same framed and hung in our apartments.
- October 9, 1913, Past Master's jewel presented to Wor. Joseph L. Remington, Rt. Wor. George B. Stacy making the presentation.
- October 30, 1913, official visit of Deputy Marshall L. Perrin. Work second degree, assisted by Pilgrim quartet. Past Master's diploma presented to Wor. Joseph L. Remington. Attendance, members, one hundred and eight; visitors, ninety. Deputy pays high compliment to Wor. C. A. Sumner on the Secretary's records.
- February 24, 1914, Ladies' night. Concert by "Ye Old Folks' Choir."
- April, 1914, Rev. Bro Dr. T. Corwin Watkins removed to Needham Heights after serving seven years as Chaplain, and Rev. Bro. Harry Fay Fister, the present Chaplain, was appointed to succeed him.
- May 7, 1914, voted, that "commencing October 1, 1914, for three years thereafter, the Lodge expenditures shall not exceed $1,700 per year, including $200 for the building fund and $100 for depreciation. I note that during these years no item is charged off in the Treasurer's reports for depreciation, and that the expenses were $2,332.75, $1,871.37, and $1,774.42.
- May 13, 1914, Past Masters' Night, with work on third degree. Wor. H. A. Carter, of Norfolk Lodge, and Wor. Elias Whitney, of Charter Oak Lodge No. 249 of New York City, assisting the local Past Masters. In behalf of the Lodge Rt. Wor. Clifford A. Cook presented Rt. Wor. George E. Stacy a gold watch in honor of his recent eightieth birthday, and membership of fifty-five years in this Lodge. Attendance, members, ninety-two; visitors, forty.
- September 21, 1914, official visit of Deputy Granville C. Fiske. Work first degree. Members present, one hundred sixteen; visitors, seventy.
- November 26, 1914, a special committee reported that $116.50 had been raised by subscription and presented to Rt. Wor. Henry C. Skinner on his ninetieth birthday, November 14.
- March 25, 1915, seven volumes of Mackey's History of Masonry presented to the Lodge by Wor. Frank E. Mathewson.
- April 27, 1915, Honorary life membership voted to Rev. Bro. Dr. T. C. Watkins in recognition of services to the Lodge.
- June 20, 1915, Divine service at Universalist Church, Rev. Bro. H. F. Fister, Pastor. Members present, thirty-four; Knights Templars, twenty.
- October 13, 1915, Official visit of Deputy Granville C. Fiske. Work first degree. Past Master's diploma presented to Wor. Frank L. Wright. Members present, eighty-five; visitors, seventy-three.
- November 19, 1915, Rt. Wor. George B. Stacy honored with a Henry Price medal at the hands of Most Worshipful Melvin M. Johnson. The presentation was made in connection with a fraternal visit of the Grand Master to Charles River Lodge at West Medway. Rt. Wor. Bro. Stacy is the second member of Montgomery Lodge to receive this high honor, the first being Rt. Wor. Henry C. Skinner.
- January 12, 1916, Funeral special for Rt. Wor. Henry C. Skinner, twenty-ninth Master of this Lodge and District Deputy Grand Master for the Fourth District in 1864 and 1866, and for the Twelfth District in 1867 and 1868. On February 17 the family of the deceased presented the Lodge with Rt. Wor. Bro. Skinner's Henry Price medal. Neither Montgomery Lodge nor the Grand Lodge has any record of the presentation, which was probably made in 1914 or 1915.
- November 9, 1916, Official visit of Deputy Wilbur A. Wood. Work third degree. Members present, one hundred thirty; visitors, one hundred twenty-four.
- November 13, 1916, Installation of officers by Rt. Wor. George E. Stacy, assisted by ten Past Masters of the Lodge. An unusual feature was the installation of Gilbert C. Eastman as Master by his father, Wor. Bro. S. Alden Eastman, and the son responding by installing his father as Treasurer.
- April 5, 1917, voted to contribute $25 to the Milford Public Safety Committee for the benefit of Milford's company in the war with Germany and her allies.
- June 24, 1917, celebration of the bi-centennial of the formation of the Grand Lodge of England. Address by Rt. Wor. Roscoe E. Learned, of Somerville, Past Junior Grand Warden.
- July 1, 1917, Divine service at Hopedale Unitarian Church. Rev. C. A. Henderson, Pastor. Members present, forty-six; Knights Templars, twenty-five.
- August 20, 1917, Raising of Bro. William G. Pond, Captain of Co. M, Sixth Regt. Fifteen officers of the Sixth Regt. were here in uniform from Camp Devens and in the ceremony of raising only the necessary Lodge officers and the visiting army officers participated.
- August 30, 1917, Wor. Master Gilbert C. Eastman was presented his Past Master's jewel in advance of the usual time, as he was under orders to report at Washington not later than September 5, as First Lieutenant in the Engineer Reserve Corps. The presentation was made by his father, Wor. S. Alden Eastman, and later in the evening the Wor. Master was presented by the Lodge a Colt's automatic pistol and accessories as "the working tools of his new profession." Wor. Bro. Sumner's record states that "this meeting will long stand as a momentous one to the Lodge, as w7ell as a patriotic one, marking probably the first time in the one hundred and twenty years' history of the Lodge when its Master voluntarily laid down the duties and honors of the office to enter the service of our country in war.
- September 5, 1917, official visit of Deputy Wilbur A. Wood. In the absence of the Master, G. C. Eastman, in army service, his Past Master's diploma was received in charge by Senior Warden Bret N. Williams, Acting Master. Work first degree. Members present, seventy-nine; visitors, sixty-five.
- November 22, 1917, Rev. Bro. H. F. Fister and Bro. Albert C. Kinney elected honorary life members, the former for services rendered and the latter for fifty years' membership.
- December 27, 1917, A service flag with ten stars hung in the East of the Lodge-room.
- February 6, 1918, Bro. Charles E. Nutting entertained the Lodge with an illustrated talk on his hunting and fishing experiences. Use of Lodge-room and paraphernalia offered Charles River Lodge, whose quarters had just been destroyed by fire.
- February 21, 1918, Presentation of framed diploma of Wor. Samuel Haskell, nineteenth Master of Montgomery Lodge, 1849 and 1850.
- April 25, 1918, Dues of all members in United States service remitted for the duration of the war.
- April 29, 1918, Illustrated lecture on Glacier Park by Rev. Bro. Elbert W. Whitney, of Taunton.
- May 23, 1918, Voted to donate $50 to the Red Cross.
- June 20, 1918, Wor. Bret N. Williams reported on a visit to Caleb Butler Lodge, at Ayer, for the purpose of raising Bro. Mortimore C. Dennett, a member of this Lodge then in army service at Camp Devens.
- September 11, 1918, Official visit of Deputy Sands S.. Woodbury. Work third degree. Members present, seventy; visitors, fifty-nine.
- October 30, 1918, the regular and annual communication of October 17, 1918, was omitted under orders of the state authorities forbidding all public meetings because of the influenza epidemic, and the business of this meeting was transacted October 30, under a special Dispensation of the Grand Master.
- December 11, 1918, funeral special for Wor. Horace A. Brown, fifty-third Master.
- February 13, 1919, election of the following as honorary life members after fifty years' membership in the Lodge: Paran C. H. Belcher, who died a month later; Eben D. Bancroft, William Emery, Rufus C. Eldridge, Herbert Gilman, George Marshall Greene, Milton A. Saunders, Zimri Thurber, James M. Woods.
- February 19, 1919, Capt. Gilbert C. Eastman, Past Master, gave an interesting talk on his army experiences.
- April 13, 1919, Divine service at Universalist Church. Members, fifty-two; Knights Templars, twenty-nine.
- June 19, 1919, Past Masters' night. Fifteen Past Masters present for work on third degree.
- September 26, 1919, Official visit of Deputy Sands S. Woodbury. Work first degree. Past Master's jewel and diploma presented to Wor. Frank Roy Hixon. Members, seventy-six; visitors, seventy-seven. Suite not recorded.
- December 4, 1919, Wor. S. Alden Eastman, Francis G. Pond, and Charles W. Shippee elected honorary life members on account of fifty years' membership. Notice given of an increase of rental from $500 a year, without heat, to $900 a year, including heat.
- March 3, 1920, Funeral special for Wor. Bro. Clarence A. Sumner, the forty-third Master and Secretary from December 31, 1909, until his death February 29. 1920. Compiler of the Centennial History.
- April 1, 1920, Rt. Wor. Herbert S. Eldredge elected and installed as Secretary, Wor. George W. Billings, having acted in that capacity in the interim following the death of Wor. Bro. Sumner.
- May 27, 1920, Voted $25 to the Salvation Army fund.
- June 4, 1920, Officers of Franklin Lodge, of Grafton, occupied the chairs for work on third degree.
- July 29, 1920, George S. Whitney, Henry L. Patrick, Henry E. Rockwood, and George W. Nye, honored with election to honorary life membership.
- September 23, 1920, Dr. William J. Clarke elected an honorary life member.
- October 20, 1920, Fifty-two members of Montgomery Lodge and twenty-nine visitors went by automobiles to the Masonic Home at Charlton, where the Lodge officers worked the first degree under a special Dispensation from the Grand Master.
- November 4, 1920, First Official visit to Montgomery Lodge by Deputy Harry A. Billings. Work second degree. Past Master's jewel and diploma presented to Wor. George E. Thayer. A special feature was the presentation by the Deputy in behalf of the Grand Lodge of a Henry Price medal to Wor. S. Alden Eastman, the third member of this Lodge to be thus honored.
- November 25, 1920, Entertainment committee appointed to act with similar committees from the Chapter, Council, and Commandery, to arrange a series of Ladies' nights. The joint committee presented a successful series of three excellent entertainments in Town Hall during the winter and early. spring.
- January 20, 1921, Voted to appropriate $1,000 from the general fund to establish a charity fund. A committee was named to solicit funds for the George Washington Memorial for which contributions of $451 were received.
- February 23, 1921, Past Masters' Night. Seventeen Past Masters, headed by Wor. S. Alden Eastman, assisted in working the third degree. Attendance about one hundred and sixty-five.
- May 13, 1921, Funeral special for Wor. George L. Maynard, forty-sixth Master, 1895 to 1897. He was born in Hingham, April 14, 1842, and raised September 5, 1878.
- May 15, 1921, Divine service at Milford Congregational Church, Rev. Bro. Dr. Allen E. Cross, Pastor. The largest attendance at divine service for many years. One hundred and thirty Brethren and eighty Sir Knights of Milford Commandery.
- May 19, 1921, Bro. Orion T. Mason, of Charles River Lodge, presented an apron of Wor. Elihu Cutler, sixth Master of this Lodge, and a silk hat bought by Wor. Bro. Cutler in 1823.
- June 11, 1921, District exemplification, Montgomery Lodge working the opening and first section of first degree. Grand Lecturer F. L. Putnam and Deputy Harry A. Billings in charge.
- During the summer of 1921 a new indirect lighting system was installed in the main hall, with new electric fixtures
at the officers' stations and electric lighting for the preparation room, library, and other apartments.
- July 14, 1921, Initiation fee increased to $50. Recommendation of a special committee to increase the dues and place the increase in the charity fund, also a proposed By-Law for the establishment of that fund, rejected.
- August 18, 1921, Subrentals of the other Masonic bodies adjusted to meet the increased rental for our quarters, the Chapter at $60 per quarter; Council $25 per quarter; Commandery $90 per quarter; Eastern Star $45 per quarter.
- September 15, 1921, Tyler's salary increased to $50 and that of Secretary to $100.
- October 9, 1921, Divine service at Milford Baptist Church. Rev. Bro. Ernest D. Loomis, Pastor. Lodge, one hundred and thirteen; Knights Templars, fifty-one.
- November 10, 1921, Official visit of Deputy Harry A. Billings. Work on third degree. Past Master's jewel and diploma presented to Wor. Francis W. Sanderson. Attendance two hundred and ninety.
- December 8, 1921, Presentation of Deputy's jewel to Rt. Wor. Harry A. Billings, Wor. Frank Roy Hixon, his Marshal, making the presentation in behalf of friends of the Deputy who contributed towards the purchase of the jewel.
- February 9, 1922, Rt. Wor. H. A. Billings, Rt. Wor. H. S. Eldredge, Wor. F. A. Gould, Wor. F. A. Whipple, Wor. F. R. Hixon, and Rev. Bro. H. F. Fister, appointed to have charge of the 125th anniversary exercises; A. A. Cobbett, W. F. Partridge, and Otis C. Lackey elected honorary life members.
- March 24, 1922, third degree. Two ex-service men received the second section from a special corps of officers, all the stations being filled by ex-service men in uniform, and all members of Montgomery Lodge, Capt. Gilbert C. Eastman, Past Master, in the East.
- April 6, 1922, Randall B. Greene elected an honorary life member, having been a member of Montgomery Lodge for over fifty years.
- April 7, 1922, Ladies' Night exercises in Town Hall. Entertainment by orchestra and vocalist; buffet lunch and dancing.
Such, Brethren, is a resume of the past twenty-five years in the life of this historic Lodge. I assure you I appreciate the honor of having been selected to prepare it, and in closing wish to repeat this sentiment proposed here a number of years ago, Montgomery Lodge — God bless her, keep her, speed her, while she steers among the breakers of unsounded years.
SKETCHES OF MASTERS OF MONTGOMERY LODGE 1897 - 1922
Arthur Whitmore Vant. Born in Milford June 27, 1866; Raised April 17, 1890. Elected forty-seventh Master October 6, 1897, and installed November 18. Member of Mt. Lebanon Chapter, Milford Council, Milford Commandery. Residence, 21 Main St., St. Johnsbury, Vt. Connected with granite industry in Milford, Chicago, and Hardwick, Vt.; later with the Fairbanks Scale Co., and at present a travelling clothing salesman.
Charles Frederick Butterworth. Born in Lowell, Mass., February 22, 1868; Raised November 20, 1890. Elected forty-eighth Master October 27, 1898, and installed November 17. High Priest of Mt. Lebanon Chapter 1897 and 1898; member of Milford Council and Milford Commandery; D.D.Gr.M. for Twentieth Masonic District for several months in 1901, resigning owing to removal from state. Residence, Hopedale, Mass.; Director of Draper Corporation.
Frederick Arthur Gould. Born in Milford December 9, 1871; Raised November 21, 1893. Elected forty-ninth Master October 4, 1900, and installed November 1. High Priest of Mt. Lebanon Chapter 1902 to 1904; Thrice Illustrious Master of Milford Council, 1917 and 1918, and its present Recorder; Commander of Milford Commandery 1910 to 1912, and its present Treasurer; life member of Montgomery Lodge March 11, 1909. Residence, 3 Gibbon Ave., Milford; Hardware Dealer.
Edwin Joseph Wescott. Born in Boston November 12, 1844; Raised November 21. 1893. Elected fiftieth Master October 16, 1902, and installed November 5. Member of Mt. Lebanon Chapter, Milford Council, Milford Commandery. Residence 153 Grand Ave., Ocean Park, California. Retired.
Frank Ariel Whipple. Born in Diamond Hill, R. I., October 31, 1866; Raised January 6, 1898. Elected fifty-first Master October 20, 1904, and installed October 31. High Priest of Mt. Lebanon Chapter 1911 and 1912; Thrice Illustrious Master of Milford Council 1913 and 1914; Commander of Milford Commandery 1919 and 1920. Residence, Church Street, Milford; former quarry superintendent; now an estimator in that industry.
Clarence Arthur Lilley. Born in Milford, August 18, 1874; Raised February 8, 1900. Elected fifty-second Master October 25, 1906, and installed November 8. High Priest of Mt. Lebanon Chapter 1909 to 1911; member of Milford Council and Milford Commandery. Residence West Somerville; clerk at the Boston and Maine freight office, Boston.
Horace Anselm Brown. Born in Camden, Maine, September 10, 1867; Raised February 5, 1891. Elected fifty-third Master, October 8, 1908, and installed November 5. Member of Mt. Lebanon Chapter; former Chaplain of Milford Council; Commander of Milford Commandery 1906 to 1908. Was cashier of the Home National Bank until his death in Mystic, Conn., December 8, 1918. Buried in West Medway with Masonic honors.
Harry Augustus Billings. Born in Worcester April 30, 1871; Raised February 20, 1902. Elected fifty-fourth Master October 28, 1909, and installed November 18. D.D.G.M. for the Twenty-third District, 1920 and 1921; present Treasurer of Mt. Lebanon Chapter; Thrice Illustrious Master of Milford Council 1914 to 1916; Commander of Milford Commandery 1918 and 1919; Residence, Hopedale. Former general manager of the Grafton and Upton railroad; now assistant purchasing agent for the Draper Corporation, Hopedale.
George William Billings. Born in Milford September 18, 1878; Raised March 16, 1905. Elected fifty-fifth Master October 5, 1911, and installed November 2. High Priest of Mt. Lebanon Chapter 1912 to 1914; present Conductor of the Council of Milford Council; Commander of Milford Commandery 1920 and 1921; Residence 156 Congress St., Milford; engaged in newspaper and job printing with his father.
Joseph Locke Remington. Born in Chelsea, Mass., September 2, 1876; Raised June 28, 1906. Elected fifty-sixth Master October 24, 1912, and installed November 13. Member of Mt. Lebanon Chapter; present Thrice Illustrious Master of Milford Council; present Senior Warden of Milford Commandery. Residence Hopedale; clerk for Draper Corporation.
Frank Leslie Wright. Born in Portsmouth, N. H., October 4, 1871; Raised November 11, 1907. Elected fifty-seventh Master October 1, 1914, and installed November 19. High Priest of Mt. Lebanon Chapter 1916 to 1918; member of Milford Council. Residence Parker Hill Ave., Milford; motorman for the Milford and "Oxbridge Street Railway Co.
Gilbert Clarence Eastman. Born in Milford October 5, 1880; Raised April 3, 1908. Elected fifty-eighth Master October 5, 1916, and installed November 13. High Priest of Mt. Lebanon Chapter 1919 and 1920; present Captain General of Milford Command-ery. Mustered into U. S. service at Washington September 2, 1917, as First Lieutenant Engineer Reserve Corps; Captain in Quartermaster Corps; discharged January 21, 1919. Residence Congress St., Milford; president of the S. A. Eastman Co., box manufacturers.
Bret Newly Williams. Born in Federalsburg, Maryland, December 18, 1873; Raised January 20, 1910. Elected fifty-ninth Master and installed October 25, 1917. Member of Mt. Lebanon Chapter; present Captain of the Guard of Milford Council. Residence Hopedale; clerk for the Draper Corporation.
Frank Roy Hixon. Born in Milford October 30, 1881; Raised May 18, 1914. Elected sixtieth Master October 30, 1918, and installed September 6. Present High Priest of Mt. Lebanon Chapter; present Deputy Master of Milford Council; Second Guard of Milford Commandery. Residence So. Main St., Milford; bacteriologist for the C. F. Brigham Milk Co., Cambridge.
George Edward Thayer. Born in Franklin, Mass., February 12, 1865; Raised April 7, 1892. Elected sixty-first Master and installed October 9,1919. Member of Mt. Lebanon Chapter; present Steward of Milford Council; Commander of Milford Commandery 1914 to 1916; residence South Milford; Clerk for Draper Corporation in paymaster's department.
Francis Wallace Sanderson. Born in Springfield, Mass., September 5, 1875; Raised July 14, 1915. Elected sixty-second Master October 21, 1920, and installed November 11. Member of Mt. Lebanon Chapter, Milford Council, Milford Commandery; Residence 9 Pine St., Milford; accountant, at present engaged as travelling salesman for Milford Provision Co.
James Henry Garland. Born in Newington, N. H., August 31, 1869; Raised February 4, 1909. Elected sixty-third Master October 13, 1921, and installed November 14. Present Secretary of Mt. Lebanon Chapter. Residence Gibbon Ave., Milford; in spector for the Hopedale Mfg. Co., Milford.
Space forbids publishing in full the excellent speeches made at the banquet. Those of the Acting Grand Master and His Excellency the Governor follow:
REMARKS BY ACTING GRAND MASTER FERRELL
My Brother Toastmaster, my Brothers in Masonry, and Ladies: I am delighted tonight to see that portion of the audience present which oftentimes we miss at these anniversary occasions, and I can assure them that to me personally there has been added a touch of beauty which multiplies more than I can tell you the pleasure of the occasion.
May I assure you, my Brothers and ladies, that it is a great privilege for the officers of the Grand Lodge to be here tonight and to present to you their compliments. In a sense I feel rather at a loss, because I wish speeches were something like clothes — I wish that one could use one speech time after time, just as one wears a suit of clothes. Now this afternoon I had the great pleasure of addressing the Brothers in their Lodge-room and I am sorry that I cannot present that speech to the ladies tonight, but that is impossible — and yet I have no doubt, my fair friends, that you will receive a part of the speech at some later meeting, as I have no doubt you will ask your husbands just what was done and just what was said, and I hope and trust, my Brothers, that you will have more to remember in this afternoon's address than in the speech I am making.
But did you ever stop to think, my Brothers and ladies. what a significance an occasion — such a gathering as this has — the one hundred and twenty-fifth anniversary of Montgomery Lodge? There are times when individuals hesitate to tell their age. The years seem to accumulate too fast, and there are those who have arrived at the age of thirty who have never gone beyond. But an institution such as ours, that is called upon to face innumerable vicissitudes, that withstands the perils that are incident to turmoil— the perils that are found in the assaults that are made upon institutions — an institution that is able to withstand such perils and arrive at one hundred and twenty-five years, and then looks back and sees a splendid record of achievement, ah! then, indeed, it is proud to claim its years, and its pride is not only a matter of record, but it is applauded by all its friends, and tonight we are assisting you in commemorating the many years that have gone, and we hope many years that lie ahead.
How significant was that poem which the Toastmaster read (Kipling's "The Mother Lodge") signifying, revealing, and emphasizing the universality of Freemasonry. The Grand Master tonight is in China and there is a Lodge there which, when it was established, had upon its altar three volumes of different sacred writings. Remarkable, isn't it? It was called International Lodge. How remarkable that occurrence was is only seen when we stop to consider that from the four corners of the earth and from all manners of faiths men had been drawn together upon one common foundation of mutual trust and held together by the great tie of fraternity.
First, what is Masonry? It is a fraternity. The Grand Lodge of Massachusetts emphasizes the fraternalism that is found throughout the limits of this jurisdiction. The Grand Lodges of the United States emphasize the same thing, and wherever we go there is the same feeling of kinship — there is the same spirit of glorification — there is the same desire to assist, and, my Brothers and ladies, that is the great need of this hour in the world's history—-that is the great demand which has arisen out of the turmoil of present life — the spirit of fraternity; the spirit of mutual confidence; the spirit of a common desire to help our fellow men; that, and that alone, will produce the solution of the problems which today are troubling the human race.
See the beautiful rose that is in this bouquet. What a mystery it is. When we first saw it, it was a little, hard, green bud, and then, day-by-day, it marched along the road of destiny and finally it unfolded for us and gave us the beauty which we see tonight. Fraternity — fraternity is expressed in Masonic fellowship. Here in your Lodge, from the small and perhaps difficult beginning, you have walked along the road of the years.; you have followed the invitation of your destiny, and tonight, at the age of one hundred and twenty-five years, are revealing the beauty of fraternity among yourselves. And the same revealing is being made throughout the jurisdiction; throughout our land, and throughout the world. And some day, when men learn to read the hearts of all their fellow men — when, through this gloss of mutual — well, what shall I call it ? — mutual confidence, there comes complete knowledge of what man needs, then, my Brothers — then — the problems that trouble society; the dangers that threaten industry; in social contacts, and in political situations; those dangers will disappear, and the Kingdom of Brotherhood will be established upon earth; and to that end — to that great objective — this Lodge has dedicated itself — believes as every other Lodge — as those who believe in brotherhood — we are dedicating ourselves to its realization.
"We are willing to pay any price of service in order that the ideal may be realized. Go on, my Brothers! Be generous, even as yoii have been in the past, for when you invest yourselves in service you have made the greatest investment that is possible — you have given yourselves, not to find yourselves empty or bankrupt, but you have given yourselves and you find yourselves enriched! (Applause).
May the years treat you kindly; may destiny be gentle as it comes upon you; and, as you look back from the vantage point of another twenty-five or fifty years, I trust the retrospect may be just as bright as your retrospect is tonight. I trust your consciousness of having done the work as well as you could will be just as firmly established as that consciousness is tonight. Success to you. . . May happiness be yours, and yours the great reward of knowing that you have been Brothers to your fellow man and true servants of the Great Architect!
150TH ANNIVERSARY HISTORY, SEPTEMBER 1947
From Proceedings, Page 1947-280:
In his centennial history of Montgomery Lodge, A.F. & A.M., the author, Worshipful Clarence A. Sumner, establishes the fact that the first Masonic body in Milford was Charity Lodge, of which no definite record, either of its members or the surrender of its charter, can be found.
Our own Montgomery Lodge was organized and first met in the Dr. Nathan Miller house in Franklin. From this place they moved to Oliver Ponds Tavern, then to their third home in Masons' Hall in Franklin. Their fourth home was in Levi Adams Hall in West Medway. They then moved to Fuller's Hall, their fifth home. The sixth home was in Hathorn's Tavern in Medway, and from there they moved to Mr. White's in Medway Village, their seventh home. The eighth meeting place, according to the Centennial History and the record of March 18, 1846, "Voted to hire hall of Bro. W. Adams for one year, at twenty-five dollars per year." This hall was in Medway Village. The ninth home was in Masons' Hall in Medway Village. Then for their tenth home they moved to Milford, and first met in the Old Town House where their first meeting was held in December, 1852.
At the time of this meeting, Charity Lodge was meeting in the building on the easterly side of Main Street, now occupied by the First National Stores and others.
From the Town House, for their eleventh home, they moved to Church Block. Their twelfth and last move came in 1879, when they moved to Exchange Block, where they held their first meeting on February 6.
Since its institution, Montgomery Lodge has enrolled 1572 members, of whom 336 are now living.
Eighty-six Masters have served the Lodge, among whom was Worshipful Samuel Payson. He held the chair for twelve consecutive years. Another outstanding Master was Worshipful Leslie C. Childs, who served as the sixty-eighth Master, in 1926 and again as the eighty-third Master, in 1942.
Many events in the last half century would merit mention at this time, but reference to them all would burden you with too much detail. I shall therefore confine myself to the more important, trusting that you may find the others in your copy of the history.
On March 3, 1898, it was voted to loan the lithograph plate of the Nathaniel Miller place to the C. M. Lilley Company of Columbus, Ohio. This was one of the plates prepared for the Centennial History.
On April 20, 1899, several items of interest were dealt with. The Lodge received an invitation to be present at the laying of the corner stone of the Episcopal Parish House in Medway, which was to be under the direction of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge.
The Lodge was presented two volumes of the family Bible from the estate of John S. Scammel. A diploma and apron, once the property of Brother Horatio Thayer, were presented to the Lodge.
On August 17, 1899, an investigating committee reported favorably on the project of buying the Hayward Estate on the easterly side of Main Street. This was the property where Charity Lodge once had its home. An additional committee was appointed to prepare a printed report, with recommendations, at a future meeting. On October 12, 1899, the committee on the Hayward Property made its printed report, and after full discussion, it was voted to indefinitely postpone any action.
For the first time in the history of the Lodge, on April 11, 1901, a father raised his son to the Master Mason Degree, Worshipful George L. Maynard raising his son Arthur.
On July 26, 1901, Brother J. B. Bancroft laid the foundation for a building fund by presenting the Lodge $1000.00 for the purpose.
In June, 1902, a Chaplain's Jewel was presented Rev. Brother Elbert W. Whitney in recognition of nearly nine years of service as Chaplain. Also during this year, at a later meeting, it was voted to re-carpet the hall.
In October of the same year, it was voted that a building fund be established separate from other funds and that $200.00 from the General Fund be placed therein each year. Later, in November, it was voted to install electric lights in the hall.
The following year, in February, 1903, a petition, with forty-five signatures of members in Hopedale, accompanied by $130.00 for an organ fund, was received with thanks.
In November of 1903, a committee from the Medway Historical Society presented the Lodge with the original ballot box which was used by the Lodge when it was instituted and left behind when they vacated the hall.
On August 8, 1904, Brother James S. Knights of Waukegan, Illinois, and an honorary member of Montgomery Lodge, presented the Lodge with a silver trowel.
A Master's Apron and diploma of the date of August 16, 1826, was presented to the Lodge in September, 1904. On September 27, 1906, it was voted to equip the ante-rooms and banquet hall with electric lights.
In May, 1908, the Lodge voted $100.00 to Brothers who suffered loss in the Chelsea fire.
December 10, 1909, was the fiftieth anniversary of the raising of Brother George E. Stacy.
On January 12, 1911, a portrait of the late Secretary, Brother Charles E. Whitney, was presented to the Lodge, and Brother Frank A. Warfield gave a lecture on Scandinavia.
On June 12, 1913, it was voted to purchase additional chairs for the Lodge. At this meeting it was reported that there were eight living members of the Lodge of more than fifty years standing.
On August 14, 1913, Mrs. Elizabeth B. Richardson, a granddaughter of our late venerable Marcus Richardson, 1781-1881, presented the Lodge with a Masonic apron, undoubtedly more than one hundred years old.
On June 24, 1917, a special communication in celebration of the bi-centenary of the Grand Lodge of England which, through a charter given Brother Henry Price of Boston in 1733, instituted Freemasonry into the United States.
On August 20, 1917, a communication at which eleven officers of the 6th Regiment, United States Army, were present in uniform.
On February 21, 1918, Brother Charles E. Nutting gave a lecture on hunting and fishing.
January 20, 1921, it was voted to establish a charity fund.
September 16, 1922, a special communication was held in celebration of the 125th anniversary. Worshipful George W. Billings was Historian. At this celebration the membership was 465.
On May 27, 1926, a copy of the centennial history was sent to the Supreme Council of the 33rd Degree at Washington, D. C.
January 13, 1927, the Lodge adopted an amendment changing the ending of the fiscal year to August 31st.
June 22, 1927, a special communication for the presentation by the District Deputy Grand Master of Veteran's Medals to fifteen Brothers of more than fifty years of continuous membership in the Fraternity.
April 2, 1931, Mr. Warren Stevens presented the Lodge with a door knob from the Old Town House where Montgomery Lodge first held its meetings after leaving Medway; also a window panel from the lodge-room of Charity Lodge, the first Masonic Lodge in Milford.
The Framingham DeMolay exemplified the work of their degree on May 2, 1933.
October 25, 1933, a special communication was held in celebration of the 200th anniversary of the founding of Freemasonry in Massachusetts.
December 3, 1936, Brother Ernest Bragg gave an illustrated lecture and comparison of the Columbian Exhibition of 1893 and the World's Fair of 1933. The slides were from negatives which he personally made on each occasion. January 7, 1937, Brother Herbert L. Holmes gave an illustrated talk on his trip to the Holy Land.
On July 1, 1943, Miss Nancy Bragg of Holliston presented the Lodge, through the courtesy of Brother Ernest A. Bragg, a copy of songs and Masonic information at least ninety years old. This was formerly the property of Colonel Arial Bragg, an early member of Montgomery Lodge.
April 4, 1946, a committee was appointed to prepare a history for the Sesquicentennial Anniversary, consisting of Wor. Frederick A. Gould, Wor. Albert H. Andrew and Brother Ernest A. Bragg. Brother John Minasian was the last to be raised in the third half century.
During the last half century, two world wars have been fought and Brothers of the order have participated in each. The roll of living members at the last meeting of the 150 years was 336, a drop of 129 members in the last half century.
Since its institution, Montgomery Lodge has found it necessary to expel two of its members for conduct not compatible with Masonry. Considering the total enrollment of more than 1500 members, this is a record to be proud of.
As we enter the half century leading to the bi-centennial, it is with a strong belief in the ability of the Lodge to surmount difficulties and press on to a better future.
HISTORY AT HALL DEDICATION, JUNE 1963
From Proceedings, Page 1963-172:
By Worshipful Henry P. Clough
The following brief collection of historical notes is based on the Centennial History of Montgomery Lodge by Worshipful Clarence A. Sumner, the Sesquicentennial History by Brother Ernest A. Bragg, and a personal perusal of the lodge records of the last fifteen years. Its purpose is to give in ten minutes time a quick cursory glance back over one hundred sixty-six years, and to comment on a few selected topics which, I hope, may be of some general interest. It is not intended to present a chronological or unified story of the lodge based on careful and studious research.
Members of Montgomery Lodge take a pardonable pride, I believe, in the fact that the original charter issued on September 16, 1797, was signed by Paul Revere, Grand Master. This charter is one of our highly cherished possessions, now carefully stored away, and no longer used, even for official visitations or installations.
It is perhaps of some interest to comment on the choice of the name, Montgomery, for the official name of the lodge. The records indicate that the first name selected was King Hiram and that Montgomery was substituted for it to avoid a duplication in lodge names. Apparently, the choice of the name, Montgomery, was prompted solely by the fame and great popularity of the military hero, General Richard Montgomery, who had been commissioned by General Washington and very shortly thereafter killed in action while storming the City of Quebec in 1775. General Montgomery was a member of the Masonic fraternity and a great national hero, hence the selection of his name by the founders of this Lodge.
Lodge history shows that we have had something of a roving nature, particularly in the early years. Our new quarters, which we are dedicating this evening, are the thirteenth meeting place used since 1797. Montgomery Lodge was organized in what was then a part of the Town of Franklin, and occupied three different lodge quarters in that community before moving to Medway in 1808. The first meeting-place in Franklin was the Dr. Nathaniel Miller House, a picture of which is reproduced on our lodge notices. This house, now nearly three hundred years old, is still standing in remodeled construction. Pictures of eleven meeting-places are framed together and hang in the anteroom of the Lodge. After moving to Medway, the Lodge occupied six different sets of quarters before making the change to Milford in 1852. The locations used in Milford with the dates of occupancy are as follows: The Old Town House 1852-1860, The Church Block 1860-1879, The Exchange Street Block 1879-1962, and finally our present location on Main Street. As we look over the record, it may be reassuring to note that our youthful tendency to move about from place to place has changed with the passing of the years. Our periods of occupancy have gradually lengthened, and perhaps we are now beginning a residence which will equal or surpass the record of the eighty-three year tenancy completed last year at the Exchange Street location, where almost all of Montgomery's present membership was initiated and grew up in Masonry.
When Montgomery Lodge began its existence, it had eighteen charter members. Over the one hundred sixty-six years which have elapsed since 1797, it has enrolled over eighteen hundred members, and at the present time the membership stands at three hundred eighty-five. One hundred and two masters have served the Lodge, many of whom have been men of considerable distinction and prominence in their respective callings.
From about 1825 to the middle 1840's the troubled political and Masonic times brought to Montgomery Lodge its share of problems. Although seriously handicapped by a falling membership and a generally unfavorable Masonic situation, it managed to maintain continuous operation as a lodge, and the records do not show that the charter was ever actually surrendered to the Grand Lodge. In 1847, however, a reorganization took place and on July 6 of that year the Grand Lodge reinstated Montgomery Lodge to official membership and restored full Masonic rights to the faithful members of the Lodge.
As one looks over the records of earlier years, there appears from time to time mention of a ceremonial function which seems to be less and less common as the years go by. I refer to the ceremony of corner-stone laying. In 1825 Montgomery Lodge voted to send a delegation to the laying of the corner-stone of Bunker Hill Monument. In 1859 the Lodge received an invitation to be present at the corner-stone ceremony of the Forefathers Monument at Plymouth. In 1864 this lodge was represented by a large delegation at the Masonic Temple Ceremony in Boston. Several other instances of lesser note are mentioned over the years. The most elaborate and significant function of this kind in which Montgomery Lodge had a major part occurred in Milford in 1884, when the Grand Master of Masons in Massachusetts took part in the public ceremony of laying the corner-stone of Memorial Hall. The occasion which was scheduled for May 20 had to be postponed to May 31 because of the most inclement weather conditions, even after all guests and dignitaries were present at the earlier date. Apparently, in spite of some local objection to Masonic participation in this event, the occasion was the high point in the experience of Montgomery Lodge in such functions. In the issue of June 4, 1884, the Milford Journal had the following statement: "Never in the history of Milford has such a crowd gathered and dispersed with so little to mar the pleasure as was the case last Saturday."
Montgomery Lodge has had two significant celebrations in observance, first, of its one hundredth anniversary in 1897, and then again in 1947 of the occasion of its one hundred and fiftieth birthday. I have mentioned the two histories of the Lodge prepared for these important events. The accounts of the 1897 celebration are especially complete and interesting. I cite only one event of the centennial program. On July 10, 1897, by authority of a special dispensation from the Grand Lodge, this lodge was opened on the third degree in Freemasonry, in due form in the same room at the Dr. Nathaniel Miller House, where the first meeting of Montgomery Lodge was held one hundred years before.
For the first time in the history of this lodge, it now occupies a building owned and operated by Masonic bodies. The transition from tenant to landlord has been long and vacillating. The considerations of purchasing property for Masonic headquarters go back over sixty years, and the beginnings of a building fund likewise to the turn of the century. The acquisition of some real estate and monetary legacies from time to time have prompted an intermittent agitation for action, but the Lodge has hesitated. Finally, as the result of several compelling factors, the decision was made last year to make the change and to take over the proprietorship of this building. After a year of tremendous activity which, I am sure, has been the busiest year in the life of our Worshipful Master, we are now embarking on a new venture in a new home.
In conclusion and by way of a summary in most general terms, in reading the records of Montgomery Lodge, one cannot fail to be impressed with the reality and significance of that Masonic verity so well expressed in that excerpt of ritual which reads "And thus through a succession of ages are transmitted unimpaired the most excellent tenets of our Institution."
NOTES IN THE CENTENARY HISTORY OF CHARLES RIVER LODGE, APRIL 1971
From Proceedings, Page 1971-172:
Early meetings of Montgomery Lodge were held in Medway and there might not be a Charles River Lodge had Montgomery Lodge succumbed to the vigorous anti-Masonic pressures in 1826; many Lodges simply went out of existence, but due to the dedication of Montgomery Lodge's membership, including one instance when the Charter was sewn into the lining of a Brother's coat, our mother Lodge persevered. . . The last meeting of Montgomery Lodge ever held in Medway was on December 1, 1852, and Montgomery Lodge removed to Milford, and of the original petitioners for our Lodge, only one member, Emery B. Cook, had been present at the 1852 meeting.
. . . the Charter of Montgomery Lodge was signed by Grand Master Paul Revere. The meeting place of the Lodge was at the Doctor Nathaniel Miller place at "River End", in what was then Franklin, near the Rockville section of Millis. The early meetings were held in the southeast parlor of the house which still stands by the little pond at Miller and Myrtle Streets in the present Norfolk.
At the first meeting, eighteen charter members were present from Medway, Medfield, Holliston, Franklin, Mendon, Dover, Wrentham, Bellingham and Walpole. Of those assembled, thirteen had served in the Revolution; five were Doctors; two were storekeepers; two were farmers; three were tavernkeepers; one blacksmith, one clock maker, one tool maker and a leather dresser.
If, as our precepts teach, there be toil to attend our meetings, consider the difficulty of travel by foot, by horse or wheeled conveyance for our early brethren from their distant places, particularly in winter.
It was less than a year when our early brethren directed their attention to the construction of a Temple; of several sites considered, a location in Franklin on Main Street near the common was agreed upon, and Mason's Hall was built. Later it was moved and served as a dwelling on Union Street.
In 1803 Charity Lodge of Mendon was chartered and it existed until 1836.
In 1809 the Grand Lodge authorized the transfer of the meeting place to Medway to the tavern of "Squire" Levi Adams. The building is still standing in the intersection of Village and Summer Streets in West Medway. Only one member of Montgomery Lodge before that time was a Medwayite, Wor. Abner Morse of North Medway — a man who, I might mention, must have fulfilled the duties of his office well for he was re-elected to the Chair in the East several times. At the time of the move, and at the last meeting in Franklin, two more Medway men were voted into membership: Bros. Calvin Cutler, Master of the Lodge, 1811-1812 and Elihu Cutler, Master of the Lodge, 1817-1818.
It is interesting to note the expenses of the Lodge in those early days; one year's cost of wood and candles for Lodge room use came to $4.50. And a bill presented by Bro. Adams, as Steward, is of more than passing interest — "to supply the Lodge with Refreshment, bread or crackers, cheese, rum, brandy, gin and loaf sugar, at 25¢ each person" and, I might add, it was voted agreeably, excepting that "the Tyler and first-time visitors be exempted from such payment." But then, we must remember that the Lodge room was in a Tavern.
Again, the Lodge began to think about a new meeting place — and some months were taken up on committee deliberations. It was finally decided that the building later known as Fuller's Hall in West Medway be purchased. The original building was one story high, built by the Second Congregational Church in 1816 as a Parish House, constructed from timbers of the old 1749 first meeting house. Montgomery Lodge enlarged the building by adding a second story and hip roof in 1818 and this structure is still standing, but with a plain roof — at the southeast corner of Main and Franklin Streets in West Medway, and is the present Parish House. It is interesting to note that Rising Sun Lodge, I.O.O.F., was organized in that building, and was used by that order for a number of years. The building was dedicated to Masonic usage on March 4, 1818.
On April 22 of the same year, brethren from Wrentham petitioned for a new Lodge, and with the blessing of Montgomery Lodge, this assemblage became Saint Alban's Lodge, now of Foxboro.
It was not until 1821 that lamps were used in the Lodge rooms instead of candles. . .
. . . in 1826 one William Morgan attracted attention, when, after publishing a pretended "Exposition of Masonry", his disappearance brought havoc upon our Order by those who, through ignorance or bias, despised our tenets. Whatever the events — and the details to this day are not clear, they occasioned, in the words of Wor. William Ollendorff, "a cold anti-Masonic wind" which "swept over the entire country and many Lodges succumbed."
Our Mother Lodge, Montgomery, did not succumb, but it was only through the total dedication and courageous efforts of her officers that the Charter survived. At one point, the dangers to practice by the Gentle Craft in our town required extreme measures for preservation of the Charter; that was when Bro. Nathan Burr sewed the Charter in the lining of his coat and carried it about on his person; later, he buried the Charter and records of Montgomery Lodge in his hayfield. It was not until 1831 that the excitement calmed as a result of a public letter published and signed by over 6,000 Masons; many of the signers commanded so high public respect that belief was accorded the truth in their statements by the populace.
Until 1837 Montgomery Lodge's meetings were held irregularly, and only the annual meeting was held on schedule; the Lodge was transferred to Hathon's Tavern in Medway Village, the present site of a drug store, beauty parlor and professional offices in the building standing at the northwest corner of Village and Broad Streets. The tavern was moved to Peach and North Streets and is now a dwelling. Its site was taken by the Quino-Dequin Hotel, and after it burned, the Gladstone Hotel — later the New Medway Hotel was built, the building referred to above.
In 1842, interest in our order revived sufficiently to attract the attention of candidates, and in that year four applications were received.
Between 1845 and 1852 various places in Medway were occupied by Montgomery Lodge and on December 23, 1852 the first meeting of the Lodge was held in the old Town House in Milford.
The communication in Medway, held on December 1, 1852, was the last in this town until Charles River Lodge was organized. Between those years Montgomery Lodge continued to practice the Craft, and dedication of the new hall in the Music Hall Block in Milford took place on January 10, 1860 with H. B. Staples, Worshipful Master. Annual dues, by the way, were $1.00 per member.
175TH ANNIVERSARY HISTORY, SEPTEMBER 1972
From Proceedings, Page 1972-292:
HISTORICAL SKETCH OF MONTGOMERY LODGE FROM 1947 TO 1972
(For detailed histories of Montgomery Lodge for the earlier periods, refer to 1897 Mass. 216-227, 1922 Mass. 313— 352 and 1947 Mass. 280-284).
Montgomery Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons was officially named King Hiram Lodge and to avoid duplication was renamed Montgomery Lodge.
Our Lodge was named after General Richard Montgomery, who was commissioned by General George Washington. General Montgomery was killed in action while attacking Quebec City on New Year's Eve, 1775. He was a fraternal brother and a national hero. The brethren of Montgomery Lodge are very proud of our charter. This charter was signed by the Most Worshipful Paul Revere, who was Grand Master of Massachusetts in 1797. This charter is retained in the archives of our Lodge.
During the period from 1947 to 1963, Montgomery Lodge had the privilege of raising the Right Worshipful Arthur H. Melanson on June 10, 1953. He has now attained the position of Deputy Grand Master of the Massachusetts Grand Lodge.
Our Lodge was indeed proud to have our own Leslie C. Childs appointed District Deputy Grand Master in 1956 for the Natick 23rd Masonic District.
Montgomery Lodge, which was situated in the Exchange Building on Main Street was closed. We then moved to the Odd Fellows Block on Main Street. This building was purchased by an organization of Masons known as Cinosam Associates, Inc. This new Masonic Temple was dedicated on June 22, 1963 (1963 Mass. 170-175) The old Exchange Building ironically burned down while a regular meeting was in progress at our new quarters on February 3, 1972.
In 1970 our Lodge Service Committee instituted a program to benefit the surrounding communities. This program offered medical aids to anyone, free of charge. This program has been extremely productive in these communities.
In June of 1971, a sign was purchased showing all the Masonic Bodies. This beautiful sign was attained by the generous donations of our brethren and friends.
Once again, our Lodge was indeed proud to have Albert H. Andrew appointed District Deputy Grand Master on December 27, 1971. Right Worshipful Brother Andrew is a Past Master of Montgomery Lodge and has been Lodge Secretary for the past twenty-nine years. New aprons were purchased in June of this year for the purpose of the 175th anniversary. Again, the generosity of our brethren made this possible.
HISTORY OF MONTGOMERY LODGE
(As reported in Milford Daily News, Friday, September 15, 1972)
The charter of Montgomery Lodge was signed by Paul Revere on September 16, 1797, exactly 175 years ago Saturday, by Paul Revere, who on the night of April 18, 1775 rode his horse through Middlesex villages and farms with William Dawes to spread the alarm to these inhabitants that the British troops (about 700) were on their way to Concord to destroy arms.
He was Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Masons when the charter was issued to Montgomery Lodge — 22 years after his history-making night ride.
Isaiah Thomas, also of Revolutionary period fame, an advocate of freedom of speech and the press, was another signer of the Milford Lodge's charter. He was Senior Grand Warden of the Grand Lodge at this time.
He moved his presses out of the Boston area to Worcester hours before the battles of Concord and Lexington. Mr. Thomas was also founder of the American Antiquarian Society with headquarters now on Salisbury Street, Worcester.
The Lodge's charter, because of its fragility, is kept in a safe deposit box in one of Milford's bank vaults. A copy of the charter will be on exhibit in connection with the anniversary program.
General Richard Montgomery, for whom the Milford Lodge was named, was also of Revolutionary fame although perhaps less known than Revere.
He was born in Convoy House, Donegal, Ireland, and studied at Dublin College. He served as an officer in the British Army during French and Indian Wars in America. He returned to England where he became imbued in the right of the Colonists and when the Stamp Act (1765) was to be enforced on the 13 colonies to help defray the cost of the royal troops, Montgomery and several other officers of the British 17th Regiment declared publicly they would give up their commission if the order persisted to enforce the act.
In 1772 he returned to America, bought a farm at Kingsbridge, New York, and in July 1773 married. His wife, Janet, was a daughter of Robert R. Livingston, one of the judges of the King's bench and later known as Chancellor Livingston.
By virtue of his position, Livingston administered the oath to George Washington when he became the first President of this country. The Bible used belonged to St. John's Lodge, No. 1 of Masons, New York City, still preserved with "extreme care and great reverence." Montgomery moved to Rhinebeck, New York, after his marriage, built a house and accepted an appointment to brigadier-general, being one of the first eight brigadier-generals of the Continental Army.
He was sent a short time later on the ill-fated expedition to capture Quebec where he was killed in action December 31, 1775. Just prior to his death he was promoted to major-general.
Forty-three years after his death his remains were returned from Quebec to New York by a legislative act and with ceremony buried beneath a monument in front of St. Paul's Church, July 8, 1818. Several Masonic Lodges were named for him.
General Joseph Warren was Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Masons in Massachusetts when he was killed at the batde of Bunker Hill.
Burr Guided Lodge
Montgomery Lodge had several meeting places in Franklin (first) and then Medway before coming to Milford in December of 1852 — 55 years after being instituted. It was the Lodge's ninth meeting place since organization when it located in Mil-ford's first town house. The first Lodge meeting place in Franklin was in the Dr. Nathan Miller house, located about three miles from the center of the town. It was originally a three-room dwelling built by John Boyd, which later became the property of his son, John Jr. In 1797 three large rooms and an ell were added. The building was on an old Indian trail between Wrentham and Medfield, being one of the first five homes built on the trail.
It was at this old farmhouse that Montgomery Lodge celebrated its 100th anniversary of its first meeting in June 1897.
The second meeting place was Oliver Pond's tavern and then Masibs' hall, both in Franklin. The fourth move was to Levi Adam's hall and the fifth to Mason's hall, West Medway. The sixth was at Hathon's tavern, Medway Village and then for about two months in the quarters of William White, who shared a part of the home of his son-in-law, George Barber, a prominent member of Montgomery Lodge. For the next six years the meetings were in Mason's Hall, Medway Village, before coming to Milford.
During a period following the anti-Masonic excitement of 1829, it was Nathan Burr, born in Bellingham and a mill hand who lived in Bellingham and Franklin for years, who guarded the Lodge charter. Mr. Burr was Worshipful Master of Montgomery Lodge when it was moved to Milford from Medway in 1852. Fearful of the safety of the charter signed by Grand Master, Most Worshipful Paul Revere, and other records from enemies of the order, Mr. Burr is credited with having carried the charter on his person by having it sewed to his shirt for a while.
Subsequently, he took the records and charter, nailed them in a box and buried them in a hayfield, marking the place with a haystack placed over them.
After meeting in the old Milford town house seven years the Lodge moved into the nearby Church block which stood at Church and Pearl Streets.
In February, 1879, the Lodge located on the entire top floor of the brick building at Main and Exchange Streets (now two stories owing to a damaging fire earlier this year.)
Here Montgomery Lodge, Mt. Lebanon Chapter, Milford Council and Milford Commandery, Knights Templar, leased for 84 years, until 1963 when the four local Masonic organizations and Granite Chapter, Order of The Eastern Star, moved to 155 Main Street after "Cinosam" purchased the Odd Fellows building. "Cinosam" comprises a group of Masons and others having shares. It is the name "Masonic" spelled in reverse.
The new carpet on the floor of the main Lodge hall, costing nearly $5000 is the exact design and material of the carpet which was in the main hall in the former quarters, P. Eugene Casey block, Main and Exchange Streets. Also the new carpet was made on the same frames as were used by the M. J. Whittall Company of Worcester, when the original carpet was woven more than a half century ago. The main hall seats about 250.
Among public events in which Montgomery Lodge had an active part was the laying of the corner-stone of Memorial Hall at school and Spruce Streets on May 31, 1884 in which Civil War Veterans of eight G. A. R. posts, several Sons of Veterans camps, bands and about 1000 marchers, including nearly 400 local and vicinity Masons with Grand Lodge Officers participated.
Most Worshipful Abraham H. Howland, Jr., Grand Master, spread the cement on the corner-stone with G. L. Maynard, Commander of the Milford Post, G. A. R.
On June 17, 1895 a large group of members of Montgomery Lodge went to Boston by train to participate in the 100th anniversary observance of Bunker Hill Day. Sixty-nine members, accompanied by the Milford Brass Band, were in line for the ceremonies. About sixty Masonic Lodges participated in the program. A model of the monument erected in memory of General Joseph Warren was decorated with wreaths of laurel.
In August 1895, about 125 Sir Knights of Milford Commandery, Knights Templar, many of whom were members of Montgomery Lodge, with the Milford band, participated in a parade at the Knight Templar triennial at Boston.
The late Dr. Horace E. Whitney, a Milford dentist for many years, was Commander of the local Commandery at the time. Some 20,000 Knights Templar were in the parade.
An interesting record in the Lodge's book was the vote at a meeting in Montgomery Lodge, to attend a meeting of John Warren Lodge, in nearby Hopkinton on February 13, 1884. The trip was made by train on the Milford and Hopkinton railroad.
Among the well known members of Montgomery Lodge is the late General William F. Draper of Hopedale, who served as ambassador to Italy in the President McKinley administration.
The Hopedale manufacturer was 19 years old when he enlisted in Company B. 25th Regiment, Massachusetts Volunteers in the Civil War. He rose through the grades to being commissioned in 1862. In 1864 he was seriously wounded when shot through the body in the battle of the Wilderness. He was raised in Montgomery Lodge in 1866.
Rev. Adin Ballou joined Charity Lodge of Masons in 1824, which was first established in Mendon and then moved to Milford where it subsequently dissolved. He then became a member of Montgomery Lodge. Reverend Brother Ballou was prominent in temperance and anti-slavery work and best known perhaps as founder of the Hopedale Community.
In more recent years, George E. Stacy, for whom the Stacy School was named, was one of Milford's best known Masons. He served for many years in various offices of Montgomery Lodge. He was a member of the Milford School for many terms.
- 1808 (Petition to remove to Medway granted, II-393)
- 1846 (Petition to restore charter referred to committee V-93; "adversely received", V-121)
- 1852 (Petition to remove to Milford considered, V-406; granted, V-512)
- 1855 (Invitation to Grand Lodge to attend St. John's Day accepted, V-562)
- 1884 Participation in Milford Memorial Hall cornerstone laying, 1884-57)
OFFICER LIST, MARCH 1818
From New England Galaxy, Vol. I, No. 22, 03/13/1818, Page 1:
Officers in Montgomery Lodge, Medway, West Parish.
- R. W. Caleb Sayles, Master.
- W. Gilbert Clark, S. Warden.
- W. Sewall Sanford, J. Warden.
- Levi Adams, Treasurer.
- John C. Scammell, Secretary.
- Hamblet Barber, Jr., S. D.
- Thomas S. Mann, J. D.
HALL DEDICATION, MARCH 1818
From New England Galaxy, Vol. I, No. 22, 03/13/1818, Page 1:
The dedication of Mason's Hall in Medway, West-Parish, took place on the 4th March, 1818. A Sermon was delivered by Rev. Luther Bailey, of Medway, from Heb. xiii., 6, "But to do good and to communicate forget not"; and an appropriate Address to the Master, Wardens and Brethren of Montgomery Lodge, by brother Artemas Brown, M. D.
OFFICER LIST, JANUARY 1826
From Masonic Mirror and Mechanics' Intelligencer, Vol. II, No. 2, January 1826, Page 15:
Officers of Montgomery Lodge, Medway, chosen at their annual meeting, Dec. 28, A. L. 5825:
- R. W. Leonard Haselton, M.
- W. James B. Wilson, S. W.
- W. Warren Lovering, J. W.
- Bro. George Barber, Jr., Treas.
- Bro. Royal Southwick, Jr., Sec'y.
- Bro. Artemas Brown, S. D.
- Bro. John Gev. Metcalf, J. D.
- Bro. David Johnson, S. S.
- Bro. Amos Hill, J. S.
- Bro. Joseph Daniels, Tyler.
- Bro. Dyer Clark, Marshal.
- Bro. Sanford Whiting, Asst. Marshal.
OFFICER LIST, DECEMBER 1826
From Masonic Mirror and Mechanics' Intelligencer, Vol. III, No. 1, December 1826, Page 2:
Officers of Montgomery Lodge, Medway, Mass., chosen at their annual meeting, Dec. 20, A. L. 5826:
- R. W. Leonard Haselton, M.
- W. Warren Lovering, S. W.
- W. John Geo. Metcalf, J. W.
- Bro. Levi Adams, Treas.
- Bro. Royal Southwick, Jr., Sec'y.
- P. M. Ethan Cobb, S. D.
- P. M. Thos. Stanley Brown, J. D.
- Bro. David Johnson, S. S.
- P. M. Hamblet Barber, J. S.
- Bro. Joseph Daniels, Tyler.
- Bro. Artemas Brown, Marshal.
- Bro. Sewall Sanford, Asst. Marshal.
ELECTION OF OFFICERS, DECEMBER 1830
From Boston Masonic Mirror, New Series, Vol. 2, No. 28, January 8, 1831, Page 218:
Officers of Montgomery Lodge, Medway, Mass., chosen Dec. 29, 1830.
- John G. Metcalf, M.
- Warren Lovering, S. W.
- Pliny Holbrook, J. W.
- John C. Scammell, T.
- Isaac Kebbe, Jr., S.
- Samuel Payson S. D
- Cephas Bullard, J. D.
- Samuel Haskell, S. S.
- Timothy L. Pond, J. S.
- James H. King, T.
- William Green, M.
- Joseph Rockwood Asst. M.
ADDRESS AT INSTALLATION, DECEMBER 1830
From Boston Masonic Mirror, New Series:
Vol. 2, No. 31, January 29, 1831, Page 241;
Vol. 2, No. 32, February 5, 1831, Page 249;
Vol. 2, No. 33, February 12, 1831, Page 258;
Vol. 2, No. 34, February 19, 1831, Page 266;
Vol. 2, No. 34, February 26, 1831, Page 278
AN ADDRESS, Delivered at the Installation of the Officers of Montgomery Lodge, Medway, Mass. Dec. 29, A. D. 1830.
By John G. Metcalf,
Master of said Lodge.
Respected Brethren,— By your suffrages yen have elected me to the responsible office of Master of this Lodge. And while I return you my acknowledgments for this mark of your confidence, and pledge you the best exertion of my abilities for the proper and faithful discharge of its duties, it will not, I trust, be considered inopportune, that I ask your attention, for a few moments, to the consideration of the peculiar situation in which, as Masons, we are placed.
As Freemasons we find ourselves beset by enemies.— Attempts have been made, and are making, to excite popular opinion against us. We are to be put under the ban of popular fury. The community are called upon to shut ns out from the enjoyment of our legal rights— from the interchange of those friendly civilities which give zest to social enjoyment, and which brighten the chain of social affection. We are to be thrust away from a participation in any of the ordinary business of society—to be debarred the privileges and immunities guarantied to us by the constitution—to be driven from the exercise of rights growing out of those privileges and immunities—to be held up to the world, as men dangerous to the well being and very existence of civil liberty. The Institution of Masonry has been defamed and slandered, by endeavors, unintermitted and untiring, to couple its principles with the infamous doctrines and practices of the French Revolution, and the still more abominable precepts of German Illuminism.— We have been held up as a society got up expressly, and purposely continued, for the propagation of Infidelity and Atheism. The community has been called upon with all the seeming energy and confidence of truth to believe that Freemasons are men, dangerous to the permanency of our free Republican Institutions: and as men opposed to the written revelations of Almighty God, and the golden precepts of the Redeemer.
And by whom is the community asked to believe all this? Let it be understood that I hold that the antimasonry of 1830 has nothing to do with the antimasonry of 1826; that the champions of that party now, are as different from those, who, in 1826, took up the cause of Wm. Morgan, as light is from darkness. The people of New York, in 1826, actuated by purposes honest and honorable, took up the cause of justice and humanity in that gross and unprecedented violation of the laws, the abduction of Morgan. They saw that the majesty of the Constitution had been violated — that a cruel and vicious crime had been perpetrated — that allowing such outrages to go unpunished would be sanctioning a precedent, which, would go at the foundation of all personal liberty and personal right. Under the influence of these motives, public meetings of the people were called — resolutions condemnatory of the deed, passed, and measures proposed and adopted, to bring the perpetrators of the deed to condign punishment. These meetings were called without respect to party, and Masons came forward and acted in them as well as others. All this was well and proper; but when designing knaves and bankrupt politicians undertook to raise the whirlwind and direct the storm, antimasonry became quite a different thing. But a little while and we see its polluted stream directed, so as to carry a political engine, by which Masons were to be turned out of office and antimasons turned in. Within one short year in some districts, antimasonry was made the criterion of eligibility and the stepping stone to preferment. With such honest leaders the antimasonic party was soon transformed into a political party, and for the last three years has acted openly, and in some instances avowedly, as such. Who among the intelligent and informed yeomanry of New England does not consider Antimasonry political. Has it not in every instance, where it has succeeded in raising the wind, come forward with its candidates and with the help of Anderton murder stories, succeeded, in our own state, in electing the Honorable Moses Thacher to a seat in the Massachusetts Senate?
And it is by such a party that the community are asked again, been voted unworthy the confidence and support of to believe the thousand and one raw-head and bloody-bones stories that are circulated, with the intention of bringing down the Masonic Institution to the dead level of intimasonic purity, and principles. The public are asked to believe Freemasons guilty of all the crimes denounced in the decalogue, while they who urge this, notwithstanding their long and loud protestations of moral honesty— notwithstanding their long and loud protestations of moral honesty - notwithstanding they are continually pronouncing that there is no honesty, no purity, no health, no life, without the pale of their political church, are the very men, who, by their own confession and irrefragible proofs multiplied an hnndred fold, fabricate and publish to the world such documents as Anderton's Affidavit, and are ready to endorse with all the moral virtues, the character of any man who will bring destruction to his own soul, by the crime of perjury in their service. These are the men who abuse the public ear with their long, loud and interminable tirades against Masonic corruption and influence. The antimasonic party seemed to have adopted the old doctrine of the Pope, that the end justifies the means, and consequently to attain their end, whether it be to mutilate the body of a Munroe, so as to make a Morgan good enough for election purposes, or procure the election of a senatorial candidate, they do not shrink from becoming accessory to the crime of subornation of perjury. To them there is no acknowledgement of moral restraint - no regard for any of the principles of civil liberty or religious freedom. They openly proclaim that the right of private opinion no longer exists - that he who will not think as they do, is an alien and an outcast from civil society.
Antimasonry has broached the question, whether the exercise of the right of private opinion, is compatible with the discharge of moral duty. It has proclaimed through her pensioned and poisoned presses, that no Freemason can discharge his duties to his God and his fellow-men. It hath called upon a whole people to rise and join in the anathema maranatha which has been rung in all its changes for the last three years. Assuming the robes of an angel of light, antimasonry hath stolen into the watchtower of Zion and with her banner upon its outer wall hath fulminated her bulls of excommunication against all those who will not bow down and do obeisance at her feet.
Not satisfied with her wide sweeping denunciations and proscription of Masonry and Masons; she comes forward and as one clothed with authority, pronounces that there shall be no neutrals in this war. They who will not go all lengths with them are put down as Masons. Any who will not become thorough-going, 'whole hog' antimasons, are no longer under the protection of the laws, or entitled to the privileges of freemen. With the most consummate impudence and the most horrid blasphemy, the community are told that antimasonry sprung from the throne of God. The temples dedicated to his worship are profaned by the heralds of these political gladiators; and from that desk, upon which should be inscribed Holiness to the Lord and from which should issue the precept, peace on earth and good will to men, nought is now heard but the wily sophisms of some political priest, or the senseless fanaticism of some antimasonic Rabbi.
Antimasonry hath poured her pollution into the pure fountain of Christianity. With Arabian magic, she hath reached The Ark, the Altar and the Priest. She hath breathed upon the sacramental cup and he, who drank of its poison, hath become the wild enthusiast and the persecuting bigot. She hath kindled strange fire upon the altar and they who knelt around that holy place have risen from the burning of its incense, to execute the commands of the angel who ministered at its shrine. She hath stricken the priest; and the messenger of grace and the legate of the skies, hath forgotten the errand of his Lord and Master; and, with the confession of his own moral treason upon his lips, breathes out his Pharisee's prayer to the only true and living God.
Is not all this trne ? Is there here anything but what is seen and felt every day ? I appeal to facts whether these things are not so? Have not Masons been voted from the jury-box? Have they not time after time, repeatedly and again, been voted unworthy the confidence and support of their fellow men ? Have they not been charged with holding and inculcating infidel and atheistical sentiments? Have they not been held up to their brethren and kindred as traitors to their country and heretics to the Christian Faith? Have not endeavors been made to fasten upon their characters the stamp of infamy and disgrace ? Have not Masons been driven from the communion-table of our common Lord and Master, Jesus Christ? Have not the time-honored relics of the dead been disinhumed, and they who died with the world and God, at peace, execrated as incarnate devils? Has not the sanctity of the domestic fireside been invaded, and the father set against the son and the son against the father?
All this has been done and more too, to accomplish the ends of antimasonry. And after all this, after all the contumely and contempt that could be thrown upon Masonry. Masons are called upon to renounce and denounce the Institution. A very modest request is this, to be sure— to ask to commit the crime of perjury, for the distinguished honor of becoming tools in the hands of the leaders of antimasonry. True some of our former number, like they, who, when persecution cometh, endure for a little time and then fall away, have deserted our ranks; and are now among the loudest and most devout in our condemnation and punishment. These are the men who have filled the world with their pretended revelations of Masonry, and out of which, with the aid of Morgan's abduction, they are endeavoring to raise a political party, upon whose banner is already inscribed the motto, rule or ruin. With the ambition of the Ephesian Demetrius, there can now be little doubt, but that the object of their wishes will soon be accomplished. A few more efforts— the long pull, the strong pull and the pull altogether, and politico-antimasonry wili be immortalized; but whether for weal or woe history will determine.
But when the ebullition of the cauldron shall have ceased - when the fecula shall have settled to the bottom, seceders will be viewed in their proper light. They will then be seen as they are. There will then be no clouds and darkness to obscure the mental horizon — prejudice and passion will no longer darken Ihe mental vision. There will then be seen men, devoid of all principle - men whose moral perceptions are so dull and obtuse, as to believe it virtuous and meritorious to break through all obligations, no matter how solemnly imposed or how voluntarily assumed. The leaders of antimasonry may love the treason but they must necessarily, in the very constitution of things, despise the traitor. He who is untrue to one party, can give no pledge that lie will be true to another. — His character for truth and veracity can give him no recommendation to his new friends, for he comes to them, with the guilt of moral treason fastened upon his character. They may make him their pander in iniquity, and use him as the degraded tool of the their unhallowed ambition; but be will always be looked upon with distrust, and, at any time, when it may best suit the convenience of the party, he will be sacrificed as unceremoniously, and turned adrift with as little compunction, as though he had not made shipwreck of his hopes of Heaven, for their purposes.
Antimasonry has preferred her complaint to the bar of public opinion, and demands a verdict in her favor. We say we are not guilty and demand the proof. Let us be fairly tried, and we do not fear the result. But we demand, and we have a right to demand, that something more shall be brought in proof, than the bare ipse dixit of those who direct the antimasonic whirlwind; or something more incontrovertible than their subsidized presses, whether edited by Samuel D. Greene, Moses Thacher or Pliny Merrick. As one of the Masonic family, I feel willing that the subject of Masonry should be as strictly scrutinized as any antimasonic madman could wish. I have no fears that public opinion, with a fair chance for a decision, would condemn us. Let us have fair play, and I am willing to abide the verdict — to stand or fall by the decision.
But the public are asked for a verdict, upon the vera cious evidence of such papers as the Boston Free Press, tho Antimasonic Christian Herald, and the Massachusetts Yeoman. Those are the affidavits, and the oral testimony comes from Pliny Merrick, Moses Thacher and Samuel D. Greene, together with the antimasonic crusaders from Michigan and New York, Judge Dexter and Henry D. Ward. We ask for more proof than these witnesses have yet brought to light. Let us have evidence from those who are not a party concerned in the verdict — and not from those, who, with half the inducement, have already published to the world the infamy of their own conduct, and demanded the thirty pieces of silver as the price of their moral degradation.
I am willing that the public gaze should be fixed upon Masonry as strongly and as intensely as vision will permit. I am willing that the subject of Masonry should be fairly, dispassionately and openly discussed. But I am not willing that the public should only be permitted to look at the subject through the clouds and darkness that antimasonry has endeavored to throw around it. I am not willing that the public should make up their verdict upon such questionable testimony as has yet been brought before them. I am not willing that their opinion should be fixed by such witnesses, as have yet been produced in the arena; by such witnesses as have averred, that the illustrious Clinton participated in the abduction of Morgan, and at last died the death of the suicide from the pangs of remorse; by such men as fabricated and published such falsehoods as Anderton's affidavit; by such men as prostituted themselves to support the character of such men as Anderton. I am not willing that evidence should bo thought sufficient when coming from such men as Moses Thacher or David Pease, although they may claim to belong to the only true church, and say they are the ministers of the Prince of Peace; or from such men as Pliny Merrick, although he confesses that, for years, he adhered to Masonry after he had become convinced that it was an unclean thing. Let the subject be calmly and fairly deliberated on, and I am willing to abide the issue. Let the writings of Masons be appealed to, and if there can be found one line that inculcates infidelity or atheism let them fall. But I ask oar accusers to put their fingers upon one single line, yea, upon one solitary word of such a character.
But some of the more moderate antimasons, say they have nothing to do with Masons, it is only Masonry that they would war with. This sophism is too plain to be tolerated. What! do they think that Masonry can exist without Masons! Would they have the world believe that they curse Masonry and love those who adhere to its principles! And if Masonry is only the object of their hate, why have they declared a war of extermination against Masons? You cannot denounce the principles or practice of a man, unless you question his discernment or impeach his honesty. Then let us hear no more of this. If Masonry is denounced, so are those who uphold and support it.
But to particularize some of the charges that have been brought per order against the Masonic Institution, we have:
Charge 1st. "The Masonic Fraternity have erected for themselves, a distinct and independent government, within the jurisdiction of the United States."
And how is this proved ? Why! by saying that Masonic law consists in the oaths or obligations to observe that law; that the penalty of Death is attached to the infringement thereof; that Masons must only deny what is I said against them per order; and that in Johnson's Dictionary, penalty means punishment! From this argument, it is said, we must have the irresistable conviction, that the Masonic Fraternity have erected an independent government within the jurisdiction of the United States.' '— This, to be sure, is a very easy and summary way of disposing of the question, but with all meekness and all due deference to a person, who only decides after much fasting and prayer; I ask the people, that people whom he would have us believe he has convinced, whether they are ready to take those lips for an oracle, which once told his congregation, the famous story about the Templar's Armory at Boston? which once said that the gospel ministry required all the time and all the talents of the most talented man, and yet spends no inconsiderable part of that time, and those talents, in propagating the most envenomed sentiments among the community? which once said that he had come to the conclusion, after long nnd mature deliberation, and with much fasting and prayer, that it was his duty to request a dissolution of his pastoral connexion with his church and congregation, and, in just one week thereafterwards, withdrew that request?
But will not the people require more proof than such men show them, before they come to their conclusions? Will they not, in the beginning, acknowledge, that the Masonic as well as any other society has the right of making such rules and regulations for the government of its members as it sees fit, provided such laws are not opposed to, and do not contravene the laws of the United States and the several States? Have we not a right to demand of this public prosecutor that he put his finger upon the instance, the one solitary instance, where Masonic bodies have acted in opposition to the laws of our common country? Have we not a right to demand of this second Solomon come to judgment, that he prove his assertion that Masonic bodies do not hold themselves amenable lo any tribunal in the country? Let him adduce in proof something beside mutilated extracts from Masonic books. Let him point out the law of the United States that Masonic legislation has abrogated? Let him tell what Lodge of Masons has ever committed the crime of premeditated murder? This dealing so much in wholesale generalities, may perhaps be in accordance with the spirit of antimasonry, but the time will come whan something more will be required; ay, the time will come when the people will demand proof before they acknowledge conviction.
Let the candid and considerate reflect but one moment, and this charge and the pretended proofs of its establishment will fall to the ground. Will they not say it is incumbent upon the accuser to show some stronger reasons before they can admit, that all the talents, and all the learning, and all the moral worth of our common country, are the perquisite of antimasonry; or that when it dies, wisdom and honesty will die with it? Will the people exceedingly fear and quake because of the wonderful exploits of antimasonry for four years past? Because William Morgan has been raised to the honors of politico-antimasonic apotheosis? Will they, the people, be awed into silence by loud denunciation, or made convert to antimasonry, because some of its headmen go up to the temple and very devoutly thank God that they are not as other men are?
Charge 2nd. "Masonic funds are unlimited and unrestricted."
Well, what then ? suppose they are; but then it is said, they may be created for purposes of charity, and they may be created and managed to the subversion of every civil government on earth. Wondrous sagacity! How thankful must the people be, that antimasonry has in its loving mercy and tender kindness seen fit to enlighten the world by proclaiming that money is the root of all evil. It is also said, wealth is power. Granted; and will the question be answered, how much of this power was expended in procuring the affidavit of one Samuel G. Anderton? How much in circulating said affidavit in the County of Norfolk, just before a senatorial election that was holden there? and how much in paying the expences of a certain Honorable delegate who lately paid a visit to his friends in Philadelphia?
But with regard to this charge, why is it thought best to be so cautious? Why is the unanswerable argument finished by saying that Masonic funds may be perverted? I will ask if it is proper, or displays any part of the Christian spirit, to throw out such insinuations as these and adduce no manner of proof in their support? Or, is it thought, because some men call their author Reverend, that his bare assertion will be taken for truth? Let us have the proof that the funds of Masonry hare ever been employed in treason or rebellion; or, that one single cent has ever been perverted, for the purpose of procuring a wretch to bear false witness against his neighbor.
Charge 3d. "Masonry practices gross fraud and extortion."
To substantiate this charge, it is said, is a very easy thing; therefore, they who do not believe it can prove it for themselves if they do not see fit to be convinced without. Why deal so much in guess-work and generalities? Why not be a little more specific, and tell us how, and in what manner, Masonry practices this fraud and extortion? We say there is no such thing — that not one cent of Masonic funds was ever gained by fraud, or forced by extortion. To this charge we present an unqualified denial, and shall content ourselves for the present with asking the author of it (Rev. Moses Thacher) the simple question, how much the Institution of Masonry has ever extorted from him?
Charge 4th. "Masonry is immoral."
As proof of this charge, we are told that the author of it feels convinced that it is true and therefore no one must be allowed to disbelieve it. Here is a syllogism with a vengeance. Whatever I believe is true; I believe Masonry immoral, therefore it is true that it is immoral! But after repeating this idea in some half a dozen different shapes; with something of the supposed feeling of a man who is afraid his own word will not be quite convincing enough he refers unprejudiced minds to one Elder Bernard for confirmation. And who is this Elder Bernard? Why! he is one of the chiefest Apostles and transcendant Luminaries of Antimasonry. But notwithstanding all this, he stands before the public by his own confession as a wretch, who has blasphemed the living God! What credit should be attached to the veracity of such a man? Would you trust him with your purse? What guaranty can he give you, that he will not embezzle its contents? Is he to be trusted with your confidence?
By his confession before hand, he tells you, he will publish it to the four winds of heaven. And yet the community are called upon to receive his sayings upon Masonry as though he still held communion with Angels. They are called upon to believe his charges and denunciations as earnestly as though their temporal and eternal salvation depended upon the result. But is it not strange? passing strange? that such a man should be one of the acknowledged heads of a party who arrogate to themselves all the moral worth of the country; — who, in the language of the self-righteous Pharisee, say to all those who will not descend with them into the polluted and polluting stream of antimasonry: Stand off: for I am holier than thou. But as if this charge of immorality was not abusive enough, Masonry is said to lead to blank Atheism. If this be true, by what metaphysical subtilty was it reserved to this age and generation to discover it? But it is untrue, and he who made the charge knew it to be so when the sentiment was written. He knew that no Atheist could be made a Mason. He knew that Masons, as well as the church over which he is still suffered to preside, are taught that they must look for salvation in Heaven through the merits of the Lord Jesus Christ. He knew that Masons are often reminded that purity of heart and conduct is essentially necessary for admission into the gates of the Celestial Paradise. He knew that Masonry teaches and often enforces the maxim upon its followers that the name of God is never to be mentioned but with that reverential awe which is due from a creature to his Creator. He knew that Masons are taught never to engage in any important undertaking without first invoking a blessing from Deity; — and yet, with the most unblushing impudence, he charges Masonry with being made up of Atheism. If this be true how comes it that we find Masons who have joined themselves to the visible church of God, and who are often heard in the exercise of prayer and adoration to that Being whom, our accuser says, they believe has no existence. How comes it that Masons are found who believe the Bible to be the word of God, and who notwithstanding the contemptible system of antimasonic espionage are found to be obedient to its precepts and walk in its ordinances blamelessly?
If Masonry is but a synonym for Atheism how comes it that Masons are found, whose lives and conversations show that they are governed with a reference to the existence of a God, and obedience to his commandments? But, thank God! This accusation is untrue. What a fearful responsibility must rest upon those, who are continually endeavoring to instill the slanderous imputation into the minds of the community? They virtually say to the son, despise thy father for he is an Atheist: — to the father cast off thy son, for he believes there is no God. — To the widowed mother, who has taught her infant children to raise their little hands in prayer to the God; of the widow and fatherless, they say, widow, mourn not for him, who was the partner of thy joys, and the companion of thy sorrows; — he was a Freemason — he scoffed at the very existence of that Being to whom thou prayest, and is now, without doubt, suffering the unutterable torments of the damned in hell! And can it be, that a being bearing the impress of Divinity, and made alive with his spirit, thus sits in judgment and deals out damnation to his brother men? For the credit of humanity, I wish it was not so.
But, alas! the confession must be made, it is solemn reality. Not all the wealth of the Indies, ten thousand times ten thousand told, vile as I am, and so little deserving the manifold mercies I am continually receiving from the hand of our Father in Heaven, would tempt me thus to usurp and sport with the attributes of Jehovah. — I would not assume the responsibility of that man for all that earth can give, though all her powers and all her dominions should yield up to the utmost farthing. What must be the reflections, if any he have, of such a man?— Perchance, in the silent watches of the night, the still, small voice may yet be heard. But how dreadful must be the intonations of its awful interrogatories? Would it not require at his hands the peace he had destroyed ? — The friendships he had broken ? The angry dissensions he had sown? The church he had hindered in her journey Zion-ward? And the souls that had perished for lack of living waters, and of the bread of life? Its dreadful questioning would sound in his ears, like the long, loud death-wail of a drowning world — It would ask him of his plighted faith, broken — of his solemn vows, unperformed — of his friends, betrayed — of their characters destroyed. — And, think you, could such questions be answered ? On one day, they must all, all be answered: — and may Heaven, in its mercies, grant long time of preparation for the important event.
Charge 5th. "Masonry subverts the administration of justice."
How is this charge proved? Why by asserting for fact that which our accusers are bound, and which they are now called upon to prove: or suffer themselves to stand before the public as convicted calumniators. From what are called Masonic obligations, antimasonic inferences are drawn and delivered as though the public were bound to swallow the responses of the oracle, nolens volens. Here again, the abduction of Morgan, like the creation of a hero in a play or the introduction of a demigod in an epic to work wonders and impossibilities is hrought upon the stage, and offered for our acceptance as proof positive to this weighty charge. Allowing that circumstance to be received, what does it prove? Why, the simple fact that Masonry has received into her bosom some men beside the author of this charge which it would have been much more to her credit and honor, had she rejected. It is but repeating the old truism that there are bad men in ail societies.
And with what earnestness and infatuation is this circumstance urged and insisted on? Ask an antimason what his proofs are and he tells you Masons carried off Morgan. Ask him whether his Masonic neighbor is a bad man? "O! I don't know," he says, "but the Masons carried off Morgan, and therefore I am bound to defame and injure the whole brotherhood - our head men say, there is no other way to get along with the matter." Admit for the sake of argument that Morgan was taken and carried off (abducted if you please) by Masons, — but that Masonry taught them it was right, and enforced it upon them as a duty, is untrue and libellous. Masonry can no more be said to inculcate such wickedness than Religion, because some men, even with the robes of priesthood upon them, have been detected in the commission of crime. — And what kind of justice is that which makes no distinction between the guilty and the innocent? By this rule, there are men, who died in all the odour of sanctity, and dragged from the silence of the grave and held up to one universal burst of execration.
History has made us familiar with the unspeakable enormities that have been perpetrated in the name of the Christian Religion, yet we have faith; as well in its threatnings of wrath as its promises of mercy. Crime, with the hands of sacrilege, hath opened the Volume of Inspiration and pointed with her crimsoned finger to the text — and fanaticism hath said, "here is my warrant": — yet we still take the Bible .as the guide of our faith and the rule of our life. Reasoning from the perversion of an Institution, we should condemn every Society on earth; for what one does not receive into its communion some unworthy member? What society on earth, whose principles have not been perverted by unworthy members, either into a cloak for hypocrisy or a warrant for crime?
Under this charge it is said that Lodges and Chapters in a neighboring state have prostituted their funds to paralyze the efforts of civil power; — but where are the proofs of this? We are not told; — but the public are asked to believe it upon the hypocritical cantings of an interested witness. Rest the proofs of it on other or better grounds, than did the Templar's Armory Story? The people will require more proof than that. But this is the way of antimasonry — it brings fsrward charges, and leaves the burden of proof on those who cannot believe them without.
Charge 6th. "Masonic Influence upon the Press."
This is a grievous complaint with the antimasons, and they deal out their denunciations in measure as they consider the subject important. With the utmost complacency they use these words, "Masonic bribery had almost effectually poisoned all our streams of public information." And if it had, pray tell us how much more light has been diffused from the Antimasonic Press? Pray tell us how much wiser the people are for the publication of such things as the Antimasonic Christian Herald or the Boston Free Press? How much of knowledge has been added to the wisdom of this age, by the arrant falsehoods and ribald pasquinades of the herd of antimasonic editors, from Solomon Southwick downwards? How many statues of brass shall be raised to the great antimasonic luminaries of the world, from Thurlow Weed down to the itinerant mountebank, Jacob Allen? When antimasonry dies will not wisdom die with it? Alas! what will become of us, when she shall have ceased from her labors of love, in enlightening this heathen world? Verily! shall we not all be dead men?
But we are told that some antimasonic stars glitter on the mantle of night, and so would a farthing candle — the darker the night the better. And but for these stars — what? why! our political horizon would be as dark as Egypt. Political horizon! what does that mean? Antimasonry meddle with politics? No! It cannot be — here is some sad mistake, for have they not cried aloud, day and night, without ceasing, that their sacred cause had nothing to do with politics! Antimasonry too sprung from the throne of God, and we are pretty sure that politics had their origin at some distance from that place. No! it cannot be! this must have been some blunder of the devil (printer's devil, we mean) for politics never entered the mind of an antimason! What! Antimasonic newspapers illuminate the political horizon? How bright that horizon must be then! And if this illumination is to be continued, pray let us know, how long it will be, before the darkness will not only be visible, bnt tangible also?
But, to be serious, this charge of bribing the press is a most atrocious calumny, not only upon the Masonic Fraternity but upon the whole editorial corps of the country. With but one Masonic Press in New England, the charge is brought forward that every newspaper was bribed into silence by Masonic influence. This charge is untrue and has no foundation in fact. They arrive at what they call the proof of it, by this rule: any paper that refuses to admit into its columns the astonishing productions of every antimasonic wiseacre who may make the demand, is put down as under Masonic influence. If an editor does not promptly acknowledge that antimasonry has engrossed all the talents, all the wisdom and all the moral worth of the country, he is set down in their black book as having been bribed by Masonry. A most logical conclusion truly! That every man must be bribed who does not think antimasonry the salt of the earth and that they who stir up its mire and dirt are the lineal descendants of the seven wise men of antiquity.
It is well, I think, that the author of this charge said nothing about lighting up the moral horizon: — and what could he? For what has antimasonry done in this respect? What of moral truth have these self-created conservators of the public morals elicited? What of moral light are we to expect or look for from such vehicles of truth and honesty as have published the sayings of Edward Giddings for the truth: a man whose infamy and want of veracity has long since become the subject of judicial record? How much of illumination could we hope for the moral horizon from such newspapers as have published Anderton's Murder Story since it was proved to be a falsehood? If the antimasonic press is as free as its supporters say it is, and if they have not too great a disrelish for the truth, will they be so good as to publish the Affidavits from Belfast, in Ireland, proving beyond a doubt that Anderton's Affidavit is false and himself a perjured miscreant?
Charge 7th. — "The artful and insidious measures with which Masons have been thrust into offices of power and trust."
We are charged with holding seven-eighths of the offices of the country. How do antimasons know this? — Perhaps the people would like to see some proof of the fact before they believe it — at any rate it might be as well to have something ready in case proof should be called for. And allowing that Masons do hold the offices, what does it prove? Certainly not much for antimasonic capability. If Masons are found in office, the antimasons must go to the people and ask them the reason of it - they put them there, and no doubt have some good reason for it. But if we are no better off in New England than our brethren are in Pennsylvania, we do not hold on twentieth part of the offices in the gift of the people. What has become of the boasted promise of the antimasons of this I state, to ascertain the number of offices holden by Masons? On inquiry do they find that the facts in the case, do not exactly tally with their round assertions before hand?— We should like to bear the report of their committee on I the subject.
But we are not only charged with holding all the offices : worth having; we are also charged with getting into them in some clandestine manner. How is this? Getting into office clandestinely! What new definition of terms have they got hold of now ? Will they be so good as to tell us how an open town meeting can be called a clandestine one?
It is charged also that artful and insidious measures are resorted to by Masons to place their friends in office. — To prove this, nothing is offered but the surmises and insinuations of the accuser. We say it is a foul slander and claim to be innocent until proved guilty. Let it be proved if it can be, that Masons ever made use of such means as were resorted to, to procure the election of Moses Thacher to the Senate, and I shall be willing to plead guilty. - When Masons publish and circulate such papers as Anderton's Affidavit to procure the election of their candidates, then we are villing to be branded in set terms by the whole antimasonic herd. It has been said that only two or three days before the election of Thacher, some hundred copies of Anderton's affidavits were distributed in one single town in the county of Norfolk, and that too before it was published in Boston. If this is not using insidious nnd artful measures to control the freedom of elections, we humbly ask what is? This noted paper that has since been proved a whole-cloth falsehood and sworn to by a wretch who was intoxicated at the time it was taken down, was circulated far and wide upon the eve of an election, after it was too late to be disproved or contradicted. And now the very party whose kennel agents did this, come forward, and through the mouth of their servant and a minister of the Gospel too tell the public that Masonry interferes with the purity and freedom of the elective franchise.
But this charge hypocritically concedes to Masons that as men, they may enjoy their rights and prerogatives like other citizens, — and goes on and says the commonwealth is in danger unless Masons are thrust out of its government and their places filled by their own honorable selves. But why do they not come out plainly and openly — and say to the people, give us the reins of your government, for there is none like us in tho whole world for holding them. This would have one recommendation — it would be plain and honest, and there could bo no mistake as to the meaning of the words. And if they do not soon come out with the acknowledgment, it will come too late for their credit; as a few more National Conventions will open the eyes of those who are still blinded and deluded by their chicanery and cunning. Look at the elements of the National Convention, lately defunct at Philadelphia. Was it not made up of broken down politicians and inflammatory demagogues? Men who cry aloud and spare not, and who will continue to cry aloud and spare not, until their mouthing patriotism becomes hopeless or their disinterested benevolence is satiated with the fat salaries of office.
Charge 8th.— "The Imprecations of Freemasonry."
The wickedness of these are established by a quotation from elder Bernard; upon which, by the gracious permission of our accuser, every citizen is granted the liberty of making his own comments. To this we say, amen, having no doubt but that the public will grant elder Bernard all the credit, to which his weight of testimony in the case, justly entitles him.
Charge 9th and last. — "Masonry inculcates a malignant and persecuting spirit."
This charge, it is averred, is brought forward with great reluctance. Great reluctance! what does this mean? Is there some misgivings of conscience, or is it sheer, hypocritical cant? What! After Masonry and Masons are denounced, the one as inculcating and the other as executing the most horrid precepts, need there be any great reluctance in calling them by any other name.' What! does it stick in the throat, to say that Masons are persecutors, after (and without any reluctance too) they are denounced as Atheists? After the whole vocabulary of Billingsgate and blackguard had been exhausted, we should think it would be altogether gratuitous and uncalled for to express any sort of unwillingness to charge Masons with any other crime, either to suit the fancy — add another item to the sum of disapprobation, or eke out the slanderous pages of an Address.
But, without being supposed to possess any very great degree of malignity, one might draw the inference that this charge was introduced for the purpose of exciting public sympathy in favor of its author; as it is said, by this we account for the scandal and reproach that has been heaped upon Seceding Masons. Now, why was not short work made of this? Why was it not said plainly: — Masons persecute us, because they will not trust as with their confidence — because they will not acknowledge our claim upon their gratitude for our labors of love in denouncing them as heretics and traitors? We are persecuted! Because some men esteem them little else thin apocryphal, our long and unceasing protestations, that we are the salt of the earth, and that there is none good beside us. We are persecuted! Because we cannot persuade people that we shall be heard for our much speaking, or esteemed for our long prayers. We are persecuted! Because the charge is laid at our door, and we cannot remove it, that we do not care so much about the wickedness of Freemasonry as we do about the salaries of office. We are persecuted! And let us once make the people believe it, and we shall soon get what we want,— the political control of the country.
But when did Masonry or Masons ever evince the persecuting spirit that has marked the ferocity of antimasonry? When did Masons ever make the attempt to drive antimasons from the jury-box or the communion-table? Have not antimasons done this? Has it not been proved true, time and again? It has, and it cannot be denied. The spirit of persecution is the same in all ages and upon all subjects. This spirit of persecution and intolerance now exercised with such unrelenting severity, and urged with so much zeal against the Institution of Masonry, is the same spirit that has filled the earth with lamentation and mourning in every retrograde age and generation. It is the same spirit that cried out in vengeance against the Saviour of the world, crucify him, crucify him. It is the same spirit that drove the primitive Christians to death in its most horrid forms.— The same spirit that has murdered her thousands in the dungeon or the Inquisition for doubling the omnipotence of the Pope. The same that brought about tho unspeakable horrors of a Saint Bartholomew Massacre. The same that kindled the fires of Smithfield and hunted the Scotch Covenanters from the face of the earth, like the wild beasts of the forests. And I ask, in candor and sober earnestness, where would be the security of liberty or life now if this modern spirit had the power of the ancient? Who would give us guaranty had the spirit her band of Jewish Centurions, that we should not in our day hear the cry, crucify him, crucify him? Who would assure us, had she her hosts of familiars, that we should not now hear of her auto de fé and behold her victims led out in savage triumph to all the horrors of the stake? Had she the swords of the bloody Charles IX who would dare to promise us immunity from their fury, when wielded by such merciless hands?
And what shall be our course, considering the present novel situation in which we are placed? What shall be the course of our conduct, persecuted as we are for opinion's sake by a party who acknowledge no moral restraint themselves and make the demand that no one else shall? The answer is short. In the language of a man and a Mason too, against whom antimasonic persecution dare not lift her voice I say, Live down the calumny and reproach that is heaped upon us. Show to the world, by our lives and conversations, that the principles of Freemasonry are good. Let us live as becomes those who are practical believers in the precepts and commands of the great Architect of the Universe as made known to us by the written revelations of his will. Let our whole lives be ordered with a reference to a day of resurrection, the final judgment and a punishment for crime in another world.
Let us so live and we shall survive the day and generation of antimasonry. Live as Freemasonry teaches us and our efforts will always be found on the side of virtue and religion. Walk in accordance with the precepts we have so often heard inculcated and we shall have nothing to fear. Although we are not operative Masons as were our ancient brethren let us never forget that we should be practical Freemasons. Let Masonic principles operate upon us and we shall live in the constant practice of morality and virtue.
In view of these considerations I would recommend, a firm, temperate and constant support of our principles upon all proper occasions. That on all proper occasions, by word and deed, we should use our endeavors to disabuse the public ear of the malicious falsehoods, that are so industriously circulated against us. I would recommend a punctual and frequent attendance upon our stated meetings; remembering however the Masonic injunction that they are not to be attended to the neglect of our necessary and useful avocations. I would recommend that we should be watchful of our rights and immunities as freeman, and resist in all lawful ways the least infringement of them.
Finally, Brethren, living so far as we ought with reference to this world, let us never forget that we should also live with reference to another. Let us so live that it may be soon, we have it remembrance, that time is rapidly passing away and that we are as rapidly passing away with it: that in a few days we must bid farewell to earth and all its vanities and enter upon the untried scenes of a life to come where weal or woe will attach to us as wel have lived virtuous or vicious here.
OFFICER LIST, DECEMBER 1831
From Masonic Mirror and Mechanics' Intelligencer, New Series, Vol. III, No. 28, January 1832, Page 218:
Officers of Montgomery Lodge, holden at Mason's Hall, Medway, Dec. 31, A. L. 5831, the following officers were chosen for the ensuing year:
- John Geo. Metcalf, M.
- Pliny Holbrook, S. W.
- Samuel Payson, J. W.
- George Barber, Jr., Treasurer.
- Isaac Kebbe, Jr., Secretary.
- Cephas Bullard, S. D.
- Nathaniel Johnson, Jr., J. D.
- Samuel Haskell, S. S.
- Amos Cutler, J. S.
- William Green, Marshal.
- Jos. Rockwood, Ass't. Marshal.
- Jas. H. King, Tyler.
ST. JOHN'S DAY, JUNE 1855
From Moore's Freemason's Monthly, Vol. XIV, No. 10, August 1855, Page 289:
CELEBRATION AT MILFORD.
The nativity of St. John Baptist was celebrated by Montgomery Lodge, at the beautiful and thriving village of Milford, in this State, on Saturday the 23d of June. The day was in all respects propitious, and the novelty of the occasion called together a large concourse of people, (men, women, and children,) from the neighboring towns. It was a gala day for all classes, and all seemed to unite in the enjoyment of it. There were probably between four and five hundred Brethren in the procession, including the Grand Lodge, Grand Chapter, several subordinate Lodges and Chapters, and the Boston Encampment of Knights Templars, (the escorting body), under the command of Sir Daniel Harwood; and never since its organization, did this old and excellent body of Military Masonry appear to better advantage. Its order, discipline, and marchings, strict military propriety and gentlemanly bearing, commanded the attention and elicited the praise of all. We felt personally proud of it, for auld lang sine — we were proud of it, because it honored itself and the occasion. It was accompanied by the Boston Brigade Band, and its ranks were full — numbering about seventy Sir Knights, including delegates from Worcester County and Pilgrim Encampments.
The procession was formed under the direction of Gen. Underwood, as Chief Marshal of the day, and moved through the principal streets of the village to the Universalist Church, — previous to entering which it was joined by about two hundred ladies, under the direction of Marshals appointed for the purpose, — an arrangement worthy of imitation on future similar occasions, inasmuch as it saved the ladies from unnecessary exposure to a hot sun and the fatigue of a long march. The procession entered the church at about half-past 1 o'clock. Every seat and standing place was occupied, and many were obliged to leave, not being able to find a space large enough to look through! And we take great pleasure in recording the fact, so creditable to the spectators — and yet a characteristic of all our New England villages — that there was neither disorder nor confusion in or out of the church—all was as quiet as a Sabbath day.
The services in the church took place in the following order :-
- Voluntary on the Organ, — rather lengthy, but excellently well executed. A musical friend at our elbow suggested at the time, that "we could not have too much of a good thing." We were free to acknowledge the fitness of the compliment to the organist, but preferred to hold the general proposition for after-consideration !
- Invocation, by Br. Rev. A. D. Sargent, of Milford.
- Chant, (from Br. Power's 'Melodies,) "Come, let us give | thanks to | God," &c.
- Prayer by Rev. Lyman Maynard, of Milford, — which, like the Invocation, was well-timed and appropriate.
- Voluntary, by the Choir.
- Address, by Rev. W. R. Alger, of Boston. The address was, of course, the leading feature in the services of the day. It was a performance not to be criticized in a brief notice. It was all Masonry in sentiment, without any exclusive adaptation to the occasion on which it was delivered. A change of a very few words would fit it for the pulpit or the lyceum. This was, doubtless, to the older members of the Order, a refreshing relief; while the younger members, though perhaps deriving no exclusive Masonic instruction from it, could not have failed to be interested and gratified with it. It touched to the quick the finer feelings and sensibilities of the heart. The theme was Friendship,—and it was treated with great power and classic beauty. In the latter respect we have rarely met with its equal. The orator, for an entire hour, was literally reveling in a bed of roses, and scattering their rich perfume with a skillful and generous hand over a large and delighted audience. Propositions were advanced to which all might not be able to subscribe, and illustrations adduced from the rich sources of classic history, the pertinence of which to the present changed condition of society, all might not readily perceive ; yet all were free to acknowledge the fascinating power of the orator and the excellence of his composition. We do not understand that the address is to be published, though most of those who heard it, would doubtless be gratified to read it. We say, most of those who heard it, because experience teaches that in all mixed assemblies the number of listeners, however interesting the occasion or important the subject, always greatly out-number the readers. The gratification of the moment, as a general thing, suffices for the future.
The services in the church were concluded with the singing of the following admirable Hymn from Br. Power's 'Melodies:—
When darkness veiled the hopes of man,
Then Light, with radiant beams, began
To cheer his clouded way;
In graceful form, to soothe his woes,
Then Beauty to his vision rose,
In bright and gentle ray.
Chorus. — In graceful, &c.
Immortal Order stood confessed,
From farthest East to distant West,
In columns just and true;
The faithful Plumb and Level there,
Uniting with the trusty Square,
The Temple brought to view.
Chorus. — The faithful, &c.
Descending, then, from Heaven most high,
Came Charity, with tearful eye,
To dwell with feeble man;
Hope whispered peace in brighter skies,
On which a trusting Faith relies,
And Earth's best joys began.
Chorus. — Hope whispered, &c.
Abroad was seen the boon of Heaven,
Fraternal Love was kindly given,
And touched each kindred heart:
The sons of Light, with transport then,
In kindness to their fellow-men,
Unveiled the gentle Art.
Chorus. — The sons, &c.
Let grateful paeans loudly rise,
O'er earth's domains, to azure skies,
As time shall onward move!
A Brother's joy and woe shall be
Undying bonds to mark the free,
To wake a Brother's love.
Chorus. — A Brother's joy, &c.
We do not feel at liberty to leave this part of the exercises of the day, without bearing our testimony to the admirable manner in which the choir sustained the important part assigned them in the services at the church. We heard but one expression among the audience, — that of hearty approval and gratification.
After the Benediction the procession was again formed and marched to the new Town Hall, where the tables were spread with the worst dinner we ever sat down to; and we have often been severely tried in this interesting particular, — albeit we are not usually very fastidious on such occasions. Experience has pretty effectually cured us of all such nonsense; but there is a point at which the gastronomic organs revolt! We give the caterer for this occasion, the credit of having reached that point of physical sufferance!
Making dinner speeches on empty stomachs, and drinking toasts in turpentine water, is a rather hazardous experiment! Nevertheless, some of the Brethren present had the courage to attempt it, and under the able presidency of Col. Thompson, succeeded to great satisfaction, and, probably, to their own astonishment! Among the number was the M. W. Grand Master, Dr. Lewis, who, in response to a complimentary toast to the Grand Lodge, spoke substantially as follows —
GRAND MASTER LEWIS' ADDRESS
Mr. President and Brethren —
We have met on this delightful occasion, in this delightful village, and with our delightful friends and sisters, to greet and welcome the high festival of Masonry. Some from the noisy metropolis of commerce, some from the busy hum of the factory, and some from the quietude of rural life ; all mingling in happy unison to commemorate and honor our cherished Institution ; and under a gracious Providence we are permitted to do this in a season of its unparalleled increase. Never in the annals of the Craft was the progress of Freemasonry more extensive or rapid. In every part of the habitable globe it is "lengthening its cords and strengthening its stakes," and if its true purposes are effected, as it thus increases, it must work much for the common good. It operates on the heart, and its alkaline smoothness neutralizes the acidities which beset society. "It pours floods of enlightenment over the narrowed vision of prejudice—infuses the glow of heaven-born charity in the soul — and, stepping boldly beyond the restricted bounds of all ordinary modern Institutions, seeks to re-establish the true principles of human fraternity, by leading all to the adoration of the Great Architect of the Universe, and acknowledging the kindred claims of every Brother of the human race."
What might be done if all men were thus united! What might be done if all men were banded together in such a glorious and noble undertaking! If one touch of nature makes the whole world akin, methinks, that that sweet and wonderful thing, sympathy, is not less powerful.
"What might be done, if men were wise!
What glorious deeds, my suffering Brother,
Would they unite In love and right,
And cease their scorn for one another?
Oppression's heart might be imbued
With kindling drops of loving-kindness,
And knowledge pour
From shore to shore
Light on the eyes of mental blindness.
All slavery, warfare, lies and wrongs,
All vice and crime might die together:
And milk and corn
To each man born
Be free as warmth in summer weather.
The meanest mortal that e'er trod—
The deepest sunk in guilt and sorrow,
Might stand erect
And share the teeming world to-morrow.
What might be done?
This might be done,
And more than this, my suffering Brother,
More than the tongue
Ere said or sung
If men were wise and loved each other.
May it be done! Let the mild sun
Of love Fraternal warm each other,
So mote it be
With each and every faithful Brother!
Even now much has been done. Our charities, not trumpeted to the world, have soothed many, many sufferings ; and our unrecorded acts have wiped the tears from sorrow's eye and allayed the bitter anguish. May I not then, as a closing sentiment, say —
Glory to an Order so worthily exercised, and honor to such a Fraternity, that comes like sunshine into the dark houses of misery, and turns drooping hearts to daylight and to hope!
Dr. Harwood, of the escorting Encampment, also replied to a complimentary notice of the body under his command, in substantially the following words :—
Mr. President and Brethren:—
I thank you for the very complimentary notice taken of the body over which I have the honor to preside, and for the flattering manner in which the sentiment has been received. Be assured that the civility is duly appreciated, and that the kind feelings expressed and manifested, are fully reciprocated. If the duties of the day have been discharged in a manner satisfactory to others, it is enough for me, and those in whose behalf I speak.
With these declarations I would gladly resume my seat. But I am not entirely satisfied that it is best, or that it is in the line of duty, to let the opportunity pass, without an attempt to do something towards accomplishing the object for which we are here.
These celebrations, be it known every where, are not engaged in for the purpose of broiling ourselves in the heat of the sun, — or of exhibiting our regalia— or of eating a dinner in public — or for the sake of enjoying a period of sociability.
The leading motives with every true Mason are, and ever should be, to testify to the world, in a public manner, our confidence in the goodness and usefulness of our beloved Institution, and to disseminate among our fellow-men, (and women) such facts and arguments as will lead to a better and more correct understanding of the nature, aims and operation of Freemasonry. Much, very much, of that kind of work has been done, and well done, today.
I shall not venture into anything like an argument on the subject, at this time, and at a period when short speeches are so very desirable. All I ask your patience for, — all I shall attempt is, to relate a couple of short anecdotes, for the purpose of showing how Masonry works, sometimes.
Within the last twelve months a Mr. Boulet, a Frenchman, who resided in Boston, was attacked with a fatal illness. His Masonic Brethren found that he was in very limited, I may say distressed, circumstances. His wants were supplied by members of the Fraternity during his illness; but he finally died, leaving a wife and three children, (the oldest six years old,) with no inheritance but poverty, and their bereavement. To show more fully their forlorn condition, I will state that the widow could not speak the English language.
But the Mason's widow and orphans were not. forgotten. Their board was paid,—money was raised to pay their passage back to France, where the widow had friends; and as no vessel offered from this port, a passage was procured on board one about to sail from New York.
But just as the family were on the eve of leaving Boston, they were attacked with the small pox; and of course the vessel sailed without them. At length, however, health was restored, and a passage was secured onboard another vessel to sail from the same port.
The family were taken to the cars, by a distinguished, warm-hearted Mason, now present — the youngest in his own arms, — their passage to New York was paid, the conductor of the train, who was a Mason, took especial care of them — they were met by Masons with a carriage at New York, at 5 in the morning - taken to a boarding-house, kept by a Brother — their board paid for them — they were carefully put on board the ship by Brethren; and the captain, who was also a Mason, and a good one, gave the family a room without extra charge, — they paying steerage passage. Letters were written to Brethren at Havre to take charge of these unfortunates, and money was furnished to meet contingencies, and pay their fare from Havre to the place of the widow's nativity.
To illustrate more fully the point at which I am aiming, and to do more ample justice to the parties of whom I am speaking, I must not omit to mention an incident that occurred while this affair was going on.
It so happened that the trunks containing the clothing of this unfortunate family were left in Boston. But the loss was promptly and fully supplied by the Brethren in New York. But the error in regard to baggage was soon discovered in Boston, and the trunks were forwarded by express, and arrived just in season to reach the widow on board the ship.
Now, I know it is hardly the thing to call names in such a case as this, and perhaps I may be blamed for so doing, but I cannot resist the. inclination to say, that wnile many were participants in this matter, three were especially active,— indefatigable—and I hope to be forgiven for pronouncing the names of Captain Funk, of the ship ---; Br. Bauer, of New York, and Br. Lewis, the M. W. Grand Master of this Commonwealth.
Now let me inform you that this deceased Brother, for whom and whose family so much was done, was not one in high life, or who ever had been — nor was he one to whom, or to whose survivors, attention would win fame, or desirable notoriety. On the contrary, he was a man in humble life — a teacher of the art of fencing. But he was a man, respectable in his calling, and one in misfortune ; and the exertions made in his behalf, and that of his bereaved suffering family, do honor to the Institution that prompted them—will receive the applause of men, and are sure to be crowned with the approbation of God.
The other anecdote is as follow:— During the last winter, an Eastern barque - the Nacoochu, of Augusta, Me., I believe, — was bound from one of the West India ports to Boston — she came on our coast in bad weather, and could not get in, 'till her provisions were nearly exhausted and the crew worn out with exposure and hardship. When spoken, they had scarcely a meal on board, and the crew had been trying to subsist on raw coffee.
Under these circumstances, with only the captain, one man and a boy able to do duty, they fell in with another homeward bound vessel, with only three days' provisions on board. The captains of both ships were Masons. Signals were given (Masonic ones too,) and answered — interview was had between the vessels — and the three days' provisions were equally divided between the two crews — and the ships parted. As if heaven would manifest its approbation of such conduct, a favorable wind immediately sprung up, and in 24 hours both ships were at anchor in safe harbors, the first named one at New London, and the other at Martha's Vineyard — just in time to escape a terrible snow storm — the severest of the winter.
After the first named vessel arrived in Boston from New London, a survey was ordered on account of damages, and a well known gentleman, one of reputation and experience in that line, was called upon to perform that service, — and it so happened that he is a member of the Fraternity. He heard the captain's story, and his true Masonic heart did more than its duty — he gave one half of his official fee to the suffering captain, as an expression of his fraternal sympathy. This I am happy to add is not the only instance of the same kind of conduct that has come to my knowledge with regard to this surveyor; and I will not resist the desire I feel, to say, that the surveyor's name is Capt. Samuel Pierce, — a past commander of the Boston Encampment.
The acts to which I have done such poor justice in the recital, are, in my judgment, the legitimate fruits of Freemasonry. And with such facts before me, I cannot believe the declarations sometimes made, that "Freemasonry has outlived its usefulness," that "it is no longer needed"—or that other institutions do its work better — as well — or even at all. On the contrary, I doubt if it was ever more needed than at present, to counteract the selfishness, and other disintegrating influences of the age. I therefore propose the following sentiment :—
Freemasonry — Useless, only where men have become too good, or too bad for improvement.
Short speeches were also made by R. W. Br. Power, Comp. Lovell (of the Grand Chapter), the orator of the day, Col. Thompson, and some others, whose names we have forgotten. The company broke up at about 5 o'clock; and bating the dinner, (which was not fit "bait, for man or beast,") the occasion was a joyous one, and our Brethren at Milford are entitled to the thanks of all parties present for the completeness of their arrangements and the admirable manner in which they were carried out.
And now one word before closing, in reference to future celebrations. That the day ought to be annually observed, we take it for granted does not admit of any question. It is the high holiday of the Fraternity, and has come down to us with the " frost of antiquity on its brow." One of the first regulations adopted after the revival of Masonry in the South of England in the early part of the last century, was that the "annual feasts should be revived;" and the " Book of Constitutions," as originally published under the sanction of the Grand Lodge of this Commonwealth, recognizing the general obligation to perpetuate this feast, declares, in imperative terms, that "the Brethren of all the regular Lodges in the same jurisdiction, shall meet in some convenient place on St. John's day, to celebrate their festival; either in their own or any other regular Lodge, as they shall judge most convenient." The propriety of celebrating the day is not therefore an open question. But not so as to the manner of doing it.
Thirty years ago, and before the breaking out of the anti-masonic excitement, which laid prostrate many of our flourishing Lodges, it was usual for a number of contiguous Lodges to unite for the purpose of celebrating at some central point, having reference to the convenience of the greatest number. In this way, it was a common thing to have three or four celebrations on the same day in different sections of the State; and this practice generally afforded "the Brethren of all the regular Lodges" an opportunity to unite in the festival, as required by the Constitutional provision above cited. But the evil day came, many of the Lodges were closed, and the public observance of the day was to a great extent suspended.
Since then there has been but one celebration for the whole State; and this for a season was found to be sufficient. But it is not so now. Most of the Lodges in the interior of the State have been revived, and many new ones established. The number of Masons in the Commonwealth at the present time is much larger than at any former period ; and though the facilities of traveling are greatly increased, there are still insuperable obstacles to prevent the assembling of all the Brethren, or any considerable proportion of them,, at any one point, on the day appointed for the festival. The time required and the great expense attending it are serious impediments to the realization of this otherwise desirable result. The consequence is, that but very few of the Brethren in the State are ever afforded an opportunity to be present on such occasions anywhere ; unless, as is sometimes the case, there happens to be a celebration in some one of the neighboring States, sufficiently near to accommodate them. This is manifestly unjust. The Brethren in all parts of th> State should be afforded an opportunity to unite in celebrating the day at home. But this can only be done by returning to the old practice. What we have to suggest, therefore, is, that the Lodges composing one or two, or more of the Districts, throughout the Commonwealth, should unite for the purpose of celebrating the day among themselves, in their immediate vicinities. Instead of one, as now, let there be three or four celebrations on the same day. The Brethren and Lodges may, in this way, all be accommodated. And let the Grand Lodge, except for urgent reasons, decline to appear in processions. This will leave the officers at liberty to attend within their proper Districts, or to disperse themselves among the Brethren, as may be most agreeable to them. Under the present practice, very few of them find it convenient to take their places on such occasions, and their Jewels are usually filled, if filled at all, by whoever happens to be available,—a proceeding not in all respects desirable or Masonic.
INSTALLATION, NOVEMBER 1866
From Moore's Freemason's Monthly, Vol. XXVI, No. 2, December 1866, Page 63:
At the Annual Communication of Montgomery Lodge of Milford, the following named persons were duly installed officers for the ensuing year. —
- Alfred A. Burrill, W. Master.
- Ezra F. Holbrook, S. Warden.
- James R. Davis, J. Warden.
- Herman H. Bowers, Treasurer.
- Lewis Fales, Secretary.
- Julius M. Woods, S. Deacon.
- Benjamin H. Montague, J. Deacon.
- Charles C. Smith, S. Steward.
- Elias Whitney, J. Steward.
- Rev. George G. Jones, Chaplain.
- Augustus W. Keene, Marshal.
- Edward Purkard, Organist.
- John M. Wood, Tyler.
LADIES' NIGHT, JUNE 1879
From Liberal Freemason, Vol. III, No. 4, July 1879, Page 128:
The Brothers of Montgomery Lodge have had it in mind to find a suitable occasion for admitting the ladies to an entertainment in the new Masonic Hall, recently completed and dedicated in that town. As the number of brethren was so great at that time, it was thought unwise to subject the ladies to what would be a crowd; hence a "Sociable and Strawberry Festival" was held in the new Masonic Hall on Tuesday evening, June 24th, according to Programme specially arranged for the occasion. This consisted of Music by an "Instrumental Quartette," and "Humorous Singing," by professional Artists, whose efforts were highly enjoyed by the Ladies and members of the Lodge. A fine collation was served by Bro. S. Mathewson, and the whole was superintended by the following efficient Committee: Daniel Reed; S. A. Eastman; S. W. Hale; Geo E. Stacy; T. C. Eastman; Julius M. Woods; Jerome Wilmarth.
RECEPTION, JANUARY 1881
From Liberal Freemason, Vol. IV, No. 11, February 1881, Page 345:
On the evening of January 18th, Montgomery Lodge A. F. and A. M. tendered Lewis Fales, for many years its Treasurer, a surprise reception at their hall. A committee waited on Brother and Sir Knight Lewis Fales at his residence and escorted him and his family to the hall, where he was welcomed by over two hundred persons comprising members of the order and their ladies. James R. Davis delivered an address of welcome, at the request of the W. M., S. A. Eastman, to which Brother Fales responded.
S. W. Hale, S. W., presented an autograph album containing the signatures of nearly all of the present members of the lodge, bearing the following inscription:
"Presented to Worthy Brother Lewis Fales, by the members of Montgomery Lodge, A. F. and A. M., as a testimonial of their respect for and brotherly love towards him, and expressive also of then best wishes for his future health and happiness. Milford, Mass., January 18th, A. L. 5881."
A collation was served in the banquet hall by Brothers Mathewson; and a very agreeable evening was passed, with music and in social intercourse.
FRATERNAL VISIT, APRIL 1884
From Liberal Freemason, Vol. VIII, No. 1, April 1884, Page 30:
At the regular communication of Montgomery Lodge, A. F. and A. M., of Milford, on Thursday evening. April 9th, there was present delegations from several different Lodges on a friendly visitation. About sixty came by special train from Excelsior Lodge, of Franklin; thirty from John Warren Lodge, of Hopkinton; and others from different places, ten different Lodges being represented by over a hundred visitors.
Among the other interesting events was one worthy of special mention. On the 30th November, 1825, there were made in Montgomery Lodge two Masons, Nathan Burr, now of North Star Lodge, of Richmond, Vt, and James H. King, now of John Warren Lodge, of Hopkinton. These two met Thursday evening for the first time since that night, fifty-nine years ago, one of them being now eighty-three, the other eighty-four years old. District Deputy Wiggin, who was present, appropriately referred to this rare fact in remarks made by him. After the regular work on the Third Degree, one hundred and seventy-five brethren assembled in the banquet hall and partook of a collation.
GRAND MASTER VISIT, SEPTEMBER 1889
From Liberal Freemason, Vol. XIII, No. 7, October 1889, Page 220:
This old Lodge in Milford, Mass., had a highly enjoyable meeting on the evening of September 30, during which the third degree was worked on the candidates. Wor. Bros. C. P. Harding of Medway and H. C. Kingman of Holliston assisting in the work. Visitors from all neighboring lodges were present on invitation of Wor. Master C. A. Cook. M. W. Henry Endicott of Cambridge, G. M. of the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts ; Sereno D. Nickerson, of Boston, Grand Secretary; G. H. G. McGrew of Cambridge, Grand Lecturer; and William Parkman, Senior Past G. M., were also present. After the work, an elaborate collation and entertainment was provided.
PAST MASTERS' NIGHT, MAY 1914
From New England Craftsman, Vol. IX, No. 8, June 1914, Page 307:
Monday evening May 18 was Past Master's Night in Montgomery Lodge, and as it had been several years since a similar event had been held it was all the more interesting.
13 of the 19 living Past Masters, not counting the present Master, were present. Those absent were the venerable 90 year old Wor. Bro. H. C. Skinner, of Milford; Wor. Bros. H. W. Lull, of Newport, R. I.; Arthur W. Vaut, of Chicago; C. Fred Butterworth, of Hopedale; Edwin J. Wescott, of California and James M. Woods, of West Newton.
The work of the evening was the Master Mason degree and the chairs were filled as follows: As Wor. Master 1st section, Wor. S. Alden Eastman; 2d section, Wor. Fred A. Gould; Wor. Horace A. Carter, Norfolk Lodge, and Wor. C. A. Sumner, the latter working 2d section in full. The 3d section was finely rendered by Wor. Bro. Elias Whitney, of Charter Oak Lodge of New York City. The charge was given by Wor. Frank E. Mathewson.
The other chairs were filled as follows:— S. W. Wor. H. S. Eldredge; J. W. Wor. C. A. Lilley; Treas. Wor. Geo. L. Maynard; Secretary Wor. Frank A. Whipple; Marshal Wor. Fred A. Gould; S. D. Wor. Frank E. Mathewson; J. D. Wor. Horace A. Brown; S. S. Wor. Harry A. Billings; J. S. Wor. Geo. W. Billings; I. S. Wor. Clifford A. Cook; Org. Bro. Harry H. Wardell, Woonsocket; Tyler, Bro. A. I. King.
George E. Stacy
The most interesting event of the evening however, was the presentation of a fine Hamilton gold watch to Wor. Bro. George E. Stacy, who has just passed his 80th birthday. The presentation in behalf of the donors — members of Montgomery Lodge was by Wor. Bro. Clifford A. Cook, whose remarks were in the nature of charges preferred against Wor. Bro. Stacy, each charge being something of a complimentary nature to Wor. Bro. Stacy.
More than 55 years a member of Montgomery Lodge, some 38 years Capt. of the Host of Mt. Lebanon K. A. C, and 38 times Prelate of Mil ford Commandery, Past Master of Montgomery Lodge, Past High Priest of Mount Lebanon R. A. C, Past Thrice Illustrious Master of Milford Council, Past Em. Commander of Milford Commandery, Past Deputy Grand High Priest of the Grand Chapter of Massachusetts, Past Grand Capt. General of the Grand Commandery of Mass. and R. 1. and Past Deputy Grand Master of the old 12th (now 23d) district of Massachusetts for a longer time (6 years) than any other Dist. Deputy of the same district. These were some of the charges brought against him to all of which he plead "Guilty." So well had the presentation been managed, that it came as a complete surprise to Wor. Bro. Stacy, who although so surprised responded in a feeling and fitting manner.
92 members of Montgomery Lodge and 50 visitors were present, among the latter being 12 Past or present masters. Visitors were present from New York City, Troy, New Jersey, New Hampshire, R. I., Maine and many places in Massachusetts.
AWARD OF HONORARY MEMBERSHIP, FEBRUARY 1919
From New England Craftsman, Vol. XIV, No. 6, March 1919, Page 190:
At the last regular communication of Montgomery Lodge of Milford, Mass., nine brethren who had been members of that lodge for more than fifty years were elected honorary members. R. W. George E. Stacy, the dean of members in point of membership, had already received the distinction January 20, 1910.
Following is a list of the members so signally honored:
- George E. Stacy, Milford, Raised Dec. 10, 1859, born May 7, 1834;
- Capt. Wm. Emery, Milford, Aprii 17, 1860, April 21, 1833;
- Herbert Gilman, Dorchester, April 27, 1860, June 15, 1841;
- Rufus C. Eldridge, Milford, Feb. 27, 1862, Sept. 19, 1835;
- Paran C. H. Belcher, Randolph, Nov. 16, 1865, Jan. 18, 1840;
- Wor. James M. Woods, West Newton, May 9, 1867, Jan. 7, 1846;
- Zimri Thurber, Brockton, June 18, 1867, Sept. 2, 1837;
- Milton A. Saunders, Milford, Feb. 25, 1868, Aug. 1, 1841;
- Geo. Marshal Greene, Milford, Oct. 22, 1868, Aug. 26, 1838;
- Eben D. Bancroft, Hopedale, Dec. 8, 1868, Aug. 27, 1847.
All of whom were raised in Montgomery Lodge. The average age of the above is 79 years, counting full years only.
150TH ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION, SEPTEMBER 1947
From New England Craftsman, Vol. XLII, No. 11, November 1947, Page 170:
The three-day observance of the 150th anniversary of the founding of Montgomery Lodge, A. F. & A. M. opened Sept. 12 in Masonic Hall.
Fourteen Past Masters of the lodge worked the Entered Apprentice degree, with Merton Tinkham as Worshipful Master. Other past masters taking part in the work were Leslie Childs, J. Mason Washburn, Albert Hersey, John M. Allen and C. Henry Knights, all of Hopedale; Henry Clough and Chester O. Avery of Mendon and Frederick H. Gould, F. Roy Hixon, Gilbert C. Eastman, George V. Billings, Emerson J. Robinson and Albert H. Andrew of this town. A collation followed.
A special communication of the lodge was held the following evening when at 5.45 Grand Master Samuel H. Wragg and suite was officially received. At 6.30 supper was served in Town Hall with 400 attending.
Roy S. Conway, Worshipful Master, following the supper, introduced Grand Master Wragg as toastmaster. He presented Ernest A. Whitney with the 50-year veterans' medal. Ernest A. Bragg, lodge historian, gave a brief review of the lodge's history. Mr. Bragg has compiled a history of the lodge for the past 50 years, and has a roster containing the names of the 1572 men initiated in the Lodge over the 150 years.
Sunday at 3 p. m. a special religious service was held in the Methodist Church. Members of the lodge were escorted to the church by Milford Commandery, K. T. Rev. J. Garfield Sallis, pastor of the church is chaplain of Montgomery Lodge. Rev. Dr. Francis D. Taylor of Worcester, a past Deputy Grand Master and at present superintendent of Central Massachusetts Methodist Churches, gave an address, bringing the notable observance to a close. Rev. Luther Morris, pastor of the Universalist Church, and Rev. J. Hollis Teagarden of the Hopedale Unitarian Church, took part in this service.
Montgomery Lodge was named in honor of Gen. Richard Montgomery, the Revolutionary hero who lost his life at Quebec. It was instituted in Franklin on Sept. 16, 1797, where meetings were held until 1808, when the lodge removed to Medway. and it remained in that town until 1852. It was then transferred to Milford, where it has remained since, and has occupied its present quarters in the Exchange Building at Main and Exchange Streets for 68 years, with the meeting hall on the third floor and the banquej hall on the fourth.
Roy S. Conway, present Worshipful master, is the 86th to head the lodge. Twenty-six past masters are still living. Charles H. Earnsby of Hopedale is chairman of the committee of arrangements, Albert H. Andrews, secretary, and Gilbert C. Eastman, treasurer.
GRAND LODGE OFFICERS
- Albert H. Andrew, DDGM, District 23 (Natick), 1972, 1973; N
- H. A. Billings, DDGM, District 23 (Milford), 1920, 1921; N
- Robert M. Booth, DDGM, District 15 South, 2009, 2010
- Carmen D. Borgia, DDGM, District 23 (Natick), 1998, 1999; Biography
- Chester L. Chamberlain, DDGM, District 4, 1862-1864; SN
- Leslie C. Childs, DDGM, District 23 (Natick), 1956, 1957; N
- Clifford A. Cook, DDGM, District 20 (Milford), 1895, 1896; SN
- Herbert S. Eldredge, DDGM, District 20 (Milford), 1901, 1902, 1903; Memorial
- William S. Elliott, DDGM, District 23 (Natick), 1980, 1981; N
- William Ferguson, DDGM, District 23 (Natick), 1940, 1941; Memorial
- Truman G. Hix, DDGM, District 23 (Natick), 2002; District 15, 2003, 2004
- Frank Roy Hixon, DDGM, District 22 (Milford), 1930; N
- Stewart R. Holbrook, DDGM, District 20 (Blackstone), 1987, 1988
- Edward M. Iacovelli, DDGM, District 15 South, 2013, 2014
- Herbert W. Lull, DDGM, District 20 (Milford), 1889, 1890; SN
- Arthur H. Melanson, Deputy Grand Master 1972; Grand Master, 1978-1980
- Thomas S. Mann, DDGM, District 4, 1828, 1829, 1830; SN
- Abner Morse, DDGM, District 4 (Southeast), 1813, 1814, 1815, SN
- Henry C. Skinner, DDGM, District 4, 1865-1866; District 12 (Milford), 1867, 1868; SN
- George E. Stacy, DDGM, District 12 (Milford), 1869-1874; Memorial
- Robert P. Winterhalter, DDGM, District 23 (Natick), 1986, 1987; N
- Adin Ballou, Memorial
- Alfred Augustus Burrell, Memorial
- Marcus Richardson, Biography and Memorial
- Adin Ballou Underwood, Memorial
- Leonard Wakefield, Memorial