Proceedings of the Grand Lodge 1855, VOL. III. 1855-1858.

 

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GRAND LODGE OF MAINE.
SPECIAL COMMUNICATION.

A Special Communication of the M. W. Grand Lodge of Maine, was holden at the new Masonic Hall, in Portland, on the second day of May, A. L. 5855, and called to order and opened in ample form, in the third degree, at nine o'clock, A. M., by the M. W. Grand Master, who presided.

GRAND OFFICERS PRESENT-

M. W. Timothy Chase, Grand Master.

R. W. Freeman Bradford, as D. G. Master.

R. W. Benjamin Kelley, as S. G. Warden.

R. W. William Andrews, as J. G. Warden.

R. W. Moses Dodge, Grand Treasurer.

R. W. Charles B. Smith, Recording Grand Secretary.

R. W. E. A. Chadwick, Cor. Grand Secretary.

R. W. E. G. Rawson, Senior Grand Deacon.

R. W. John H. Willard, Junior Grand Deacon.

R. W. John J. Bell, Grand Steward.

R. W. William Allen, Grand Sword Bearer.

R. W. S. B. Dockham, Grand Marshal.

Bro. John Dain, Grand Tyler.

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PAST GRAND OFFICERS PRESENT.

M. W. Robert P. Dunlap, P. G. M.

M. W. Abner B. Thompson, P. G. M.

M. W. Freeman Bradford, P. G. M.

M. W. Joseph C. Stevens, P. G. M.

The Grand Master then appointed a Committee on Credentials, consisting of Bros. Bell of Carmel, Allen of Portland and Willard of Wilton, who after attending to the duties assigned them, reported,

That the following Lodges are represented by the Brethren hereinafter named, viz:—

Portland Lodge, No. 1, by T. J. Sanborn, W. M., R. W. Kennard, S. W. Joseph Fowler, J. W.

Lincoln Lodge, No. 3, by D. K. Kennedy, W. M.

Kennebec Lodge, No. 5, by Daniel Russell, W. M., Stephen Lord, Proxy.

Amity Lodge, No. 6, by E. G. Knight, W. M., D. T. Boynton, J. W. Samuel Chase, Proxy.

Eastern Lodge, No. 7, by J. D. White, S. W.

United Lodge, No. 8, by John Crawford, W. M., John R. Haley, S. W., Joseph Stetson, J. W.

Saco Lodge, No. 9, by Elijah Smith, W. M., T. J. Murray, S. W., E. P. Burnham, Proxy.

Rising Virtue Lodge, No. 10, by Silas Alden, W. M., G. P. Sargent, S. W., John Williams, Proxy.

Cumberland Lodge, No. 12, by Moses Plummer, W. M., T. H. Weymouth, S. W.

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Oriental Lodge, No. 13, by George Peirce, Proxy

Solar Lodge, No. 14, by D. R. Wylie, W. M., T. H. G. Marston, Proxy.

Orient Lodge, No. 15, by E. B. Hinkley, S. W., George Crawford, Proxy.

St George's Lodge, No. 16, by Alden M. Wetherbee, Proxy.

Ancient Land-Mark Lodge, No. 17, by Stevens Smith, W. M., William Andrews, S. W., A. P. Stinson, J. W.

Oxford Lodge, No. 18, by Alden Palmer, W. M., B. Greely, J. W. William W. Virgin, Proxy.

Felicity Lodge, No. 19, by J. H. Sherman, W. M.

Maine Lodge, No. 20, by James C. Harper, W. M., G. W. Chase, S. W., J. H. Willard, Proxy.

Oriental Star Lodge, No. 21, by David G. Plummer, Proxy.

York Lodge, No. 22, by George B. Littlefield, Proxy.

Freeport Lodge, No. 23, by Samuel Thing, S. W., W. A. Mitchell, J. W.

Phoenix Lodge, No. 24, by Hiram Chase, W. M.

Adoniram Lodge, No. 27, by John B. Sweat, W. M., Arthur McArthur, Proxy.

Tranquil Lodge, No. 29, by R. H. Rose, J. W., Samuel H. Wilson, Proxy.

Union Lodge, No. 31, by Ebenezer Cobb, Proxy.

Hermon Lodge, No. 32, by D. C. Palmer, S. W., James M. Colson, J. W. James McCurdy, Proxy,

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Somerset Lodge, No. 34, by B. P. Pearson, W. M., A. B. Pratt, S. W., A. D. Murray, J. W.

Bethlehem Lodge, No. 35, by Elias G. Hedge, S. W., G. S. Mulliken, J.W.

Casco Lodge, No. 36, by N. Drinkwater, W. M.

Washington Lodge, No. 37, by Abiel Foster, Proxy.

Harmony Lodge, No. 38, by Merrill Thomas, W. M.

Penobscot Lodge, No. 39, by Thomas Brown, W. M.

Lygonia Lodge, No. 40, by S. P. Thomas, W. M.

Freedom Lodge, No. 42, by William Cobb, W. M., Gilman Lougee, Proxy.

Alna Lodge, No. 43, by Daniel A. Campbell, S. W., Thomas Dearing, J. W.

Piscataquis Lodge, No. 44, by Benj. F. Mudgett, Proxy.

Central Lodge, No. 45, by Amasa Taylor, Jr. W. M., D. W. Griffin, Proxy.

St. Croix Lodge, No. 46, by Francis Williams, Proxy.

Dunlap Lodge, No. 47, by Frederick D. Edgerly, W. M., Lewis B. Weeks, J. W.

Lafayette Lodge, No. 48, by George S. Currier, Proxy.

Meridian Splendor Lodge, No. 49, by Peleg H. Tracy, W. M.

Aurora Lodge, No, 50, by John C. Moody, W. M., Constant Rankin, Proxy.

Mosaic Lodge, No. 52, by Elihu B. Averill,. Proxy.

Vassalborough Lodge, No. 54, by Edward Gray, Proxy.

Fraternal Lodge, No. 55, by Joshua Herrick, W. M.

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Mount Moriah Lodge, No. 56, by L. P. Sawyer, Proxy.

Unity Lodge, No. 58, by John Winslow, W. M., Harrison McDonald, Proxy.

Mount Hope Lodge, No. 59, by John G. Fish, J. W.

Star in the East Lodge, No. 60, by Ira Wallace, Proxy.

King Solomon's Lodge, No. 61, by William Bearce, J. W., M. M. Rawson, Proxy.

King David's Lodge, No. 62, by Minot Crehore, W. M., George M. Bragg, Proxy.

Richmond Lodge, No. 63, by Abial Libby, W. M., Joseph A. Southard, S. W., James M. Kelly, Proxy.

Mystic Lodge, No. 65, by F. H. Phipps, S. W.

Mechanics' Lodge, No. 66, by William D. Washburn, Proxy.

Blue Mountain Lodge, No. 67, by Seward Dill, S. W., Jonathan Cushman, Proxy.

Mariners' Lodge, No. 68, by Charles H. Whitney, Proxy.

Howard Lodge, No. 69, by Edward J. Bolan, W. M.

Rising Sun Lodge, No. 71, by William Oakes, Proxy.

Pioneer Lodge, No. 72, by Elbridge G. Decker, Proxy.

Tyrian Lodge, No. 73, by Daniel P. Atwood, W. M., S. B. Hutchins, S. W., Clement Phinney, J. W.

Bristol Lodge, No. 74, by Peaslee M. Wells, W. M.

Plymouth Lodge, No. 75, by A. T. C. Dodge, S. W.

Report read and accepted.

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On motion,

Voted, That Master Masons in good standing be invited to take seats as visitors during the session.

This special session of the Grand Lodge having been called to decide upon the Work and Lectures of the third degree, the Grand Lodge proceeded to the exemplification thereof, Bro. John Miller in the chair; and the same was continued until one o'clock, when the Grand Lodge was called off until 2 1/2 o'clock P. M., at which time, called to labor again and continued the exemplification as before ; when after accomplishing the business of the meeting, on motion,

Voted, That the Work and Lectures of this degree be adopted, as reported by the Committee and amended by the Grand Lodge.

This Special Communication was then closed in ample form.

Attest : C. B. SMITH, Grand Secretary.

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GRAND LODGE OF MAINE.
ANNUAL COMMUNICATION.

The Annual Communication of the Grand Lodge of Maine, was holden at Masonic Hall in Portland, on the first Thursday in May, 1855, being the third day of said month, at 9 o'clock A, M., and opened in ample form in the third degree, by

M. W. Timothy Chase, Grand Master.

R. W. Freeman Bradford, as D. G. Master.

R. W. Benjamin Kelley, as S. G. Warden.

R. W. William Andrews, as J. G. Warden.

R. W. Moses Dodge, Grand Treasurer.

R. W. Charles B. Smith, Recording Grand Secretary.

R. W. E. G. Rawson, Senior Grand Deacon.

R. W. John H. Willard, Junior Grand Deacon.

R. W. John J. Bell, Grand Steward.

R. W. William Allen, Grand Sword Bearer.

R. W. S. B. Dockham, Grand Marshal.

Bro. John Dain, Grand Tyler.

The Grand Master then appointed Bros. Bell of Carmel, Allen of Portland and Willard of Wilton, Committee on Credentials, who subsequently reported the same representatives as at the Special

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Communication, and also the following past Grand Officers, in addition to those who were present at the Special Communication, viz :—

M. W. Samuel Fessenden, Past Grand Master.

R. W. Stephen Webber, Past Junior Grand Warden.

[Members and Representatives as of yesterday.]

On motion of M. W. Bro. R. P. Dunlap,

Voted, That the sympathies and condolence of this Grand Lodge be tendered to the family of our late Brother Thomas W. Smith, Past Grand Master of this Grand Lodge ; and as a token of regard for his memory, that the Grand Lodge be dressed in mourning.

Petition of Charles B. Smith and others for a new Lodge in Portland, to be called Atlantic Lodge, was presented and referred to a special Committee, consisting of Bros. E. G. Rawson, Joseph Covell and Stevens Smith.

Petition of Saco Lodge for renewal of charter was presented and laid on the table.

The M. W. Grand Master then announced the appointment of the following

STANDING COMMITTEES.

On Dispensations and Charters.
Bros. Freeman Bradford, Joseph C. Stevens and J. C. Humphreys.

On Doings of the Grand Officers.
Bros. Minot Crehore, M. M. Rawson and Elias Hedge.

On Returns.
Bros. Stephen Webber, D. P. Atwood and E. B. Averill.

On Grievances and Appeals.
Bros. B. F. Mudgett, Arthur McArthur and J. D. White.

On the Pay Roll.
Bros. E. G. Rawson, Alden Palmer and J. C. Moody.

On motion of Bro. Burnham, the Petition of Saco Lodge for renewal of charter was taken from the table and referred to the Committee on Dispensations and Charters.

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Petition of Buxton Lodge for removal to Biddeford and for change of name was presented and referred to the Committee on Dispensations and Charters.

The M. W. Grand Master then read his Annual Report—referred to the Committee on doings of the Grand Officers.

ADDRESS OF THE GRAND MASTER.

Worshipful Brethren of the Grand Lodge :

The annual return of this day has again assembled us within these consecrated walls. Under the guardian care of the Grand Architect of the Universe, we have been permitted once more to come up to this place, to take counsel together and to legislate for the greatest good and ultimate well being of that portion of our fraternity who have been committed to our care and protection.

My Brethren, I most heartily congratulate you upon the happy auspices which attend this annual communication.

Almost universal prosperity pervades our Order, and within our own particular jurisdiction, are we enjoying this blessing in an unparalleled degree.

The Lodges throughout the State were never more active in advancing the general welfare of the fraternity, and in accomplishing the great and beneficent purposes for which they were formed, than during the past year.

There is every reason to hope that your deliberations during the present communication will be characterized by the noblest impulses, and that those great cardinal virtues, " Prudence and Justice," will control your every act.

You have not come up here, my Brethren, as so many distinct factions, each warring with the other for place and preference—far from it: your previous history has chronicled you as a Grand Body, distinguished for your oneness of purpose, your abiding love for our institution, and your untiring attachment and devotion to those glorious principles which have come down to us hallowed by the remotest antiquity, and which form a part of "that cement which unites us into one common band of Friends and Brothers."

In consequence of severe ill health, I was not permitted to enjoy your friendly greetings, nor to participate in your deliberations, during the last annual communication. I was, however, happy to learn of the continued increasing interest which was there manifested, and the large accession which had been made to our numbers during the previous year.

It is a source of true congratulation, my brethren, to contrast your last published proceedings with those of only six years since. Then but 25 Lodges were represented, with but 1082 members, and 221 initiates during that year. Your last report shows 63 Lodges in active and healthy operation, with 2153 members, and 498 initiates during that year, and the several reports which will be submitted to you at this time will show this number to be still largely increased.

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Thus in this comparatively short space of time has the number of bur Lodges and their members more than doubled. If our usefulness and prosperity were to be measured by numbers, the Grand Lodge of the State of Maine occupies a high position.

And it is to be hoped that with our increasing numbers, there is also a corresponding increase of virtue and intelligence, for without these we are weak indeed.

You will therefore at once be led to reflect, that the rapidly increasing numbers of new Lodges within this jurisdiction, and the consequently great numbers annually admitted to a participation in our mystic rites, render your labors and deliberations from time to time more arduous, and their beneficial effects more and more widely diffused.

During the past year more than ordinary zeal and activity has been observed in our midst, and the continued demand for new Lodges in different localities fully demonstrates that our progress is still onward.

Since your last annual communication, I have granted the following dispensations, viz :—

June, 1854, To Oxford Lodge, for its removal from Paris to Norway.

June 12, 1854, To Benjamin Richardson and others, for a new Lodge in Tremont, County of Hancock, to be called " Hancock Lodge."

July 4, To Bailey Atkinson and others, for a new Lodge at Pembroke, County of Washington, by the name of " Crescent Lodge."

Sept. 12, To Saco Lodge at Saco, authorizing them to continue their labors under their present organization, they having lost their Charter by fire.

Oct. 25, To Joseph Getchell and others, for a new Lodge at Rockland, County of Lincoln, to be called "Rockland Lodge."

Dec, To 0. R. Batchelder and others, for a new Lodge at Solon, County of Somerset, by the name of " Key Stone Lodge."

March 21, 1855, To Benj. Herrick and others, extending dispensation issued by the Grand Lodge in May, 1852, and also for removal from Shapleigh to Alfred.

Oct. 6, 1854, I granted a dispensation to Bro. Stephen Lane and others, of Buxton Lodge, authorizing them to resume work under their original Charter, and also for the removal of said Lodge from Buxton to Biddeford. The applications upon which the foregoing dispensations have been granted, were approved by the District Deputy Grand Masters of the several districts, and were also recommended by the nearest Lodges, and are all made returnable to your present session, and subject to such action as you may think proper.

On the 15th of August last, I consecrated and solemnly dedicated " Bristol Lodge", at Bristol, and installed its officers; on which occasion I received able assistance from R. W. Senior Grand Warden, the R. W. District Deputy Grand Master of the fourth Masonic District, and many other Brethren, and also from the Rev. and R. W. William A. Drew, who officiated as Grand Chaplain, and delivered an eloquent and interesting address to the Brethren of the new Lodge,

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In October last, I specially appointed Bro. Ira Wallace, of Oldtown, to consecrate " Pioneer Lodge" at Plantation No. 11, County of Aroostook, which service he performed November 7th, 1854.

On the 14th of Sept., I consecrated and dedicated " Plymouth Lodge", at Plymouth, County of Penobscot, and installed its officers. It. W. Deputy Grand Master, Jabez True, Past Grand Master, J. C. Stevens, and several other members of the Grand Lodge were present upon the occasion, and rendered most valuable service.

Jan. 8, 1855, I specially commissioned R. W. Isaac Downing, D. D. Grand Master of the first Masonic District, to consecrate and dedicate " Arundel Lodge," at Kennebunk Port, and install its officers, which duty he performed, and made return of his doings to the Grand Secretary.

Jan. 27, I issued a new Charter (on petition of Brother Joseph Miller and others) to " King Solomon's Lodge," located at Waldoborough, County of Lincoln, their original Charter having been destroyed in the desolating fire which overwhelmed that place in September last.

In answering the several requisitions for new Lodges, I have endeavored to ascertain how far the good of the fraternity would be advanced by complying with the prayer of the petitioners, and I am pleased to say that in all the above cases, both the locality of the place and the known skill and moral character of applicants have been such as to recommend them to my favorable consideration.

On the 8th of November, I received a petition from Jonathan Robinson and three others of Sebec ; one from Russell Kittredge and others of Milo, all in the County of Piscataquis, asking for the removal of " Piscataquis Lodge" from Sebec to Milo ; and that they be authorized to hold meetings and transact the business of Masonry under the Charter of said Lodge.

I have been unable to find any authority vesting me with power to resuscitate a dormant Lodge that has not surrendered its Charter to the Grand Lodge, and especially when its original members have been reduced to a less number than is required for the formation of a new Lodge, and they asking for authority to meet and discharge the duties of masonry in a town where they were not originally located by their charter.

Entertaining these views, I have not considered it within my province to grant their prayer. I doubt not, however, that the brethren composing these petitioners are entitled to the highest esteem, both as men and masons, and that the prosperity of the Fraternity in that vicinity would be advanced by the resuscitating of that Lodge. I would therefore most cordially recommend them to your favorable consideration.

On the 3d of January, 1855, a National Masonic Convention convened at Masonic Hall, in the city of Washington, D. C, for the purpose of maturing the plan for a " National Confederation" of all the Grand Lodges in the United States. The proceedings of that Convention have been received, and will be brought to your notice. The pamphlet contains a very able address to the Grand

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Lodges of the United States, and also " Articles of Confederation," which will be submitted to you for your consideration and adoption at the present session.

This Grand Lodge has for a long time desired some organization of the several Grand Lodges, which might be equivalent to a General Grand Lodge ; and it is believed, that the plan here submitted will fully meet those wants. I would therefore call your attention particularly to this subject, during this Communication.

During the past year, many matters of interest have transpired in our various sister Grand Lodges, and throughout the Masonic World; but I have neither the opportunity nor ability, at this time, to bring them to your notice in such a manner as I should desire. For this information, therefore, I will direct you to the report of your Committee on Foreign Correspondence, whose persevering researches and untiring assiduity have annually presented to you those truly able reports which have been the just pride of this Grand Lodge.

The several District Deputy Grand Masters within this Jurisdiction, will lay before you, in due time, such reports as the condition and general aspect of the Order in their several Jurisdictions shall direct; and I doubt not, from the known ability of those Brethren, that you will receive a gladdening account of their stewardship.

During my official labors. I have felt the great necessity of some standard work on Masonic Jurisprudence. Questions are continually arising, upon which there is no well settled standard of action. Many have been submitted to me during this time: to all I have given such answers as my experience and the best authority within my reach directed. To aid partly in supplying this want, and for the more general diffusion of masonic knowledge, I would earnestly recommend, that every subordinate Lodge become a subscriber to the

" Freemason's Monthly Magazine,"

published by Brother Charles W. Moore, of Boston. This work, in several Lodges within my own particular acquaintance, is considered an indispensable acquisition. It forms a reliable work for reference, besides conveying intelligence of all that transpires of interest throughout the masonic world.

The great numbers now requiring legislation at your hands, renders the time usually allotted for the transaction of the business of this Grand Lodge quite too short; and is a subject, in my opinion, worthy of your consideration. It must have been apparent to all who have been habitual attendants upon our annual communications, that a large amount of business is either postponed or hurriedly passed over near the close of the session, for want of time.

I think that the long delay in establishing a uniformity in the work and lectures, may be attributed to this cause more than any other. This evil, I think, might be fully remedied by so altering our constitution as to provide that our annual meetings shall take place upon a day earlier in the week.

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We should thereby have ample time to complete all the labors that might be required at our hands, without being admonished that the Sabbath had overtaken us.

Impediments and inaccuracies (although sometimes trivial) are frequently arising in the Subordinate Lodges. This I believe is to be attributed mainly to the want of a proper knowledge of the laws by which they are governed, and the great diversity of laws of their own enaction.

I would therefore recommend for your consideration the propriety of still further amending our By-Laws, so as, among other things, to embrace all legislation actually necessary for the government of the different Lodges, and thereby secure a uniformity in this desirable particular.

The term of office for which I was elected has now expired, and I have reported to you upon all matters which have come to my notice in connection with that office during the year.

And I will now, my Brethren, tender to each and to all of you, my heartfelt expressions of gratitude for the numerous tokens of confidence and respect which you have so often expressed by your votes, in electing me to various offices in this Grand Body.

And in conclusion, my Brethren, I will announce, that it is not my intention to allow my name to be used again as a candidate for re-election to the office of Grand Master. It is not from any unwillingness on my part to render every service in my power for the advancement of our beloved institution, that I have come to this conclusion: my bodily health and increasing infirmities admonish me that the responsible duties of Grand Master should be entrusted to another.

My continued ill health during the past year has deprived me of much pleasure on different occasions; and could I have been permitted to be present with you at your last annual communication, duty alike to you and myself, would have prompted me to decline the high honor which you conferred upon me.

Finally Brethren, may you " be kindly affectioned one to another," and may the " bonds of unity" and the " ties of brotherly love" bind you more firmly together, that you may suffer no contention " but that noble contention, or rather emulation, of who can best work and best agree".

TIMOTHY CHASE,

On motion,

Voted, That the Reports of the several D. D. G. Masters be referred to the Committee on Doings of the Grand Officers.

The petitions of Rockland Lodge, and of Key-Stone Lodge, for Charters, were referred to the Committee on Dispensations and Charters.

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