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King Philip Lodge A.F. & A.M.



152 Columbus Drive
Fall River, MA 02720 - Map
Meeting Information:
Fourth Tuesday of each month between September and June
Contact Information:
Leon H. Cudworth
Lodge Established:
Chartered in 1866
Number Of Members:
Other Lodges That Meet In The Same Building:
Massasoit-Narragansett Lodge A.F. & A.M. Chartered in 1916
Fall River Royal Arch Chapter Chartered in 1865
Fall River Royal & Select Master Mason Chartered in 1868
Godfrey De Bouillon Commandery #4 Chartered in 1814
On January 17, 1866 The Most Worshipful Charles C. Dame, Grand Master of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of Masons in Massachusetts, granted a Dispensation to Bro. John F. Frothingham and thirty-four others to form a new Lodge at Fall River to be called King Philip Lodge.

Although only a dozen years had elapsed since the incorporation of Fall River as a city, the growth of Masonry had been consistent and steady, and it was decided that the institution of another Lodge would be most beneficial to the community.
On December 31, 1865, King Philip Lodge held its first meeting. During the year under Dispensation 23 candidates were raised to the sublime degree of Master Mason. The charter was presented to the Lodge on December 12, 1866, and by this time the Lodge was on a firm foundation and well on its way to success. The first returns to the Grand Lodge shows a membership of 75.

The Lodge had trouble initially in securing a suitable meeting place, and for some time the I.O.O.F. Hall was rented for $3.00 per night. At this time, Mount Hope Lodge suggested that a joint committee be formed to procure quarters that were more suitable. This committee was the origin of the present Hall Committee and was made up of members from Mount Hope, King Philip, and the Fall River Royal Arch Chapter. They secured the Bank Hall over the Fall River Savings Bank, and with the help of the Godfrey de Bouillon Encampment, the Hall was furnished on equal terms, share and share alike. From there the several bodies moved to the new Masonic Hall on Franklin Street where dedication ceremonies were held by Most Worshipful Abraham H. Howland, Jr., Grand Master of Masons in Massachusetts on May 23, 1885.

On June 3, 1885, the rough and perfect ashlars were presented to the Lodge by the firm of Kessel and Lawson. Mr. Lawson was the father of Worshipful Frederick W. Lawson, Past Master of King Philip. He also presented to the fraternity a rough and perfect ashlar for the Masonic Temple when it was completed in about 1922.

There is no record of a 25th anniversary, but on February 29, 1916, the 50th anniversary was held in the Music Hall which was beautifully decorated for the occasion. Music was furnished by the American Orchestra under the direction of William Allinson. Such notable persons as Most Worshipful Melvin M. Johnson, Grand Master of Masons in Massachusetts; Bro. William Howard Taft, ex-President of the United States; Bro. R. L. Beeckman, Governor of Rhode Island; and Rt. Worshipful Leon M. Abbott were present.

The corner stone of the Masonic Temple was laid May 6, 1922 in due and ancient form by Most Worshipful Arthur D. Prince, Grand Master of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of Masons in Massachusetts. On October 6, 1923, Most Worshipful Dudley H. Ferrell dedicated the new Temple to Freemasonry.

In 1924 the membership had risen to 1,012, and this mark was held rather steady until 1929. As a result of adverse business conditions, deaths, and suspensions, the membership was reduced to 502 by 1940.

On April 22, 1941 the 75th Anniversary Celebration was held at the Masonic Temple Hall, where over 350 members of the Lodge were present. Many of the high ranking officials of Freemasonry in Massachusetts and New Hampshire were in attendance. These included: Rt. Wor. Robert C. Laing Deputy Grand Master and Acting Most Worshipful Master of Masons in New Hampshire and Most Worshipful Albert A. Schaefer, Grand Master of Masons in Massachusetts. Included among the guests seated at the head table were Mayor Murray of Fall River, State Representative Stephen L. French of Swansea, and the Hon. Bro. Christian A. Herter, Speaker of the Massachusetts House of Representatives who served as the guest speaker. Bro. Herter declared that we must arm ourselves spiritually as well as otherwise. We must have unity of spirit. We must be strong if we are to maintain our democratic institutions, for the present generation and the generations to follow.

In May of 1943, at the height of World War II, King Philip Lodge was honored to have Boyd Tollinton, British Consul as a speaker at the Annual Members Night. Mr. Tollinton spoke of the Anglo-American cooperation and the outlook for a lasting peace at its conclusion with the United States and Great Britain playing leading roles in attaining that goal.

In 1966 we celebrated our 100th Anniversary with a dinner at Venus de Milo Restaurant, followed by a reception and entertainment at the Masonic Temple. Most Worshipful Thomas A. Booth, Grand Master, was present with his distinguished suite. At that time Rt. Wor. Hubert W. Burdett of King Philip Lodge was the District Deputy Grand Master with Wor. George A. Fidler as the District Deputy Grand Marshal and Wor. Edmund Kolakowski District Deputy Grand Secretary.

King Philip Lodge continued to meet in the Masonic Temple on North Main Street until 1980. At that time, due to the financial burden of the large building, the Masonic Temple was sold.

While a suitable meeting place was being chosen, we met at the Somerset Masonic Temple, until February of 1981. From March of 1981 to June of 1986 King Philip Lodge, along with the other Fall River Lodges, met at Herrick House on Pine Street. In June of 1986 this building was also sold, and we returned to Somerset to meet at the Somerset Masonic Temple.

A building committee was formed to secure plans for a new Masonic Temple to be built on land in the Fall River area. Several sites were investigated. In October of 1993 plans were made for a new Masonic Temple in Fall River, after the purchase of the Knights of Columbus building on Columbia Drive. After a lot of planning, a blueprint was accepted and plans were underway. In December of 2000 we moved into our new temple.

Currently, King Philip Lodge remains very active. We are proud to say since our last anniversary in 1991 we have had 5 new Masters, as well as one more District Deputy Grand Master. Our membership is about 85 with new members added each month, and we have 10 living Past Masters.





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