A.F. & A.M. G.R.C in the Province of Ontario
28 South Terrace and Maple Streets,
Lancaster, Ontario, Canada
Meets the First Tuesday on or before
the Full Moon at 7:30pm (see below for explanation)
For information please contact us at:
HISTORY OF LANCASTER LODGE A.F. & A.M. No. 207 G.R.C.
The first Meeting of Lancaster Lodge was held on September 12, 1868 in the village of Kirktown, now South Lancaster. The occupation of original members included a cross section of the community including: Railway Conductor, Station Master, Railway Agent, Purser, Baker, 2 Doctors, Cabinet Maker, Accountant, Blacksmith, Watchmaker, Tank House Operator, 2 Merchants, 2 Hotel Keepers, Cheese Maker, 8 Yeomen, ( farmers) and several who listed themselves as “Gentlemen”. Present day membership still includes a cross section of the community with a slight shift in the actual occupations, but no “Gentlemen”.
Money was scarce in the early days of the Lodge. The original Initiation Fee was $20.00 and Annual Dues were $3.00, payable at 25 cents per month. As further examples of the times, on June 11, 1873, the Lodge reimbursed two Brethren the sum of $10.30 for expenses incurred while attending Grand Lodge and on August 14, 1878, an entry of Dues Paid by a member was
12 ½ cents. In spite of this, the Lodge was making charitable donations from a few dollars to as much as $50.00 to needy Brethren and or citizens.
Lodge Meetings are held on the Tuesday on/or before full moon. This date was selected so there would be light, at least on clear nights, to help Members who drove with horse and buggy, or sleigh, as much as 25 or 30 miles over poorly maintained roads, deep with mud or snow. Some came to Lodge on horse back. As a matter of fact, the Lodge stables were finally dismantled in 1934. Before Lodges were formed in Maxville, Alexandria and Martintown, Lancaster was the only rural Lodge for many miles.
The Lodge moved to rented quarters in “New Lancaster” in 1881. In 1910, the Lodge paid $1,200 for the former Railway Hotel. They held their first Meeting in this new Lodge Room in 1911, and continue to meet there today. This 1860 building requires careful attention to maintenance, but two apartments on the ground floor provide some financial relief.
The future of the Lodge seems to be assured with 87 members in 2007, and an acceptable age spread among members all the way from their early 20s, and a number in the 40 to 60 age bracket plus a few older members.
The members of Lancaster Lodge maintain a four kilometer section of Highway 34, North of Lancaster, which is cleared of garbage twice a year. Charitable work includes an annual $200 bursary donation to a student from Charlottenburg-Lancaster District High School and a similar donation to the Frederick Earle Eaton Masonic Memorial Bursary Trust and the Masonic Foundation of Ontario.
Membership has included the following Grand Lodge Officers:
1 Member, Board of General Purpose, Grand Lodge
1 Grand Registrar
1 Assistant Grand Secretary
1 Past Grand Chaplain, G.R.Q.
7 Grand Stewards
1 Past Grand Director of Ceremonies, G.R.Q.
2 Grand Standard Bearer
R.W. Bro. Len Fourney, Lodge Historian
September 11, 2007