Grand Lodge of PEI History
The Sessions concluded on Saturday, February 19 with the appointment of Committees and votes of thanks to the Brethren of Victoria Lodge No. 2 for the use of their Lodge Room and to Bro. William McKechnie, Superintendent of the Island Railway, “for his kindness in facilitating the attendance of the Members of Grand Lodge, at reduced fares.” (Proceedings, p.17) Bro. McKechnie was a member of King Solomon Lodge No. 9. Similar messages of thanks to the Superintendent of the Railway were recorded annually until 1918.
At the Third Annual Communication (February 1878) a Committee was appointed to procure Regalia for the Grand Lodge Officers. The total cost was not to exceed $500. The payment plan required Grand Lodge to contribute one third of the cost and for each Freemason in the Jurisdiction to be assessed equally excepting Grand Lodge Officers who were assessed double. The plan encountered problems and after two years consideration was given to refunding the contributions from the Craft Lodges. Grand Lodge contributed $218 to the final cost and the Regalia was insured for $400 in June 1882.
The first Constitution on Grand Lodge provided for an Annual Communication in February and Quarterly Communications in May, August and November. The Quarterly Communications were held in different Lodge Rooms in the Jurisdiction including Summerside. Port Hill and Georgetown in 1876 and Tryon, Souris and Alberton in 1877. A Charter for Westmoreland Lodge No. 10 was approved at the Quarterly Communication in Tryon on May 16, 1877. At the Third Annual Communication on February 20-21, 1878 Clause 13 was amended to provide for an Annual Communication in Charlottetown on June 24 (Festival of St. John the Baptist) and a Semi-Annual on the third Wednesday of December. The Grand Master favoured the continuation of the Quarterly Communications because “brethren get better acquainted with each other.” M.W.Bro. Yeo was absent when the amendment was passed. At the Semi-Annual Meeting in Summerside in 1879 the Clause requiring all Annual Communications to be held in Charlottetown was amended to provide for the Annual to alternate between Summerside and Charlottetown. W.Bro. John Morrison PM of Victoria Lodge was the mover of the resolution. The decision was annulled at the Semi-Annual in Georgetown in 1880 when only three Brethren west of Charlottetown were present. When Bro. Morrison became Grand Master in 1890 he arranged for a motion to hold the Annual Communication in Summerside in 1892. Semi Annual Communications were discontinued after 1881. The new Bye-Laws designated June 24 as the date for the Annual Communication. When the Constitution was revised in 1910 the third Wednesday in June was approved as the date for the Annual Communication. On June 27, 1962 Grand Lodge approved a motion to amend Article IV Section 1 of the Constitution to change the Annual Communication to the fourth Saturday in June. When V.W.Bro. J.A. Carruthers gave Notice of Motion in June 1961 he recommended the second Saturday of June but the Board of General Purposes recommended the fourth Saturday to better accommodate the Brethren who were farmers. Since 1993 the Annual Communication has been held on the second Saturday in June.