Mount Zion Lodge No. 12
The first Communication for Mount Zion Lodge ‘Under Dispensation’ was held on March 7, 1878. The petitioners named on the Charter were Donald Darrach, John A.. MacLeod, George W. Bentley, Andrew Bowness, John Johnson, William Campbell, Arthur MacEwen, D.L. MacNutt and George B. MacKay. The Lodge recorded nineteen members in 1878. The Charter dated June 24, 1878 authorized the following as the first principal Officers of Mount Zion Lodge:
|Worshipful Master||Bro. Donald Darrach|
|Senior Warden||Bro. John A. McLeod|
|Junior Warden||Bro. George W. Bentley|
At the first Communication a tentative slate of Officers was named and the Lodge conducted some business. The actual election of the first slate of Officers occurred at the Communication on March 21. A set of Bye-Laws was debated clause by clause at the first Communication and eighteen Articles were written into the Minute Book. Of interest was Article 16 which required that whenever a Lodge of Emergency was called for the benefit of any particular person, that individual shall pay the whole expense thereof except when the Lodge shall adjudge it proper to dispense with the regulation. The Lodge also acquired several furnishings for the Lodge Room on that evening. The items had been purchased from King Hiram Lodge and included a Bible, four Pedestals, three Candlesticks, for chairs, five benches and six Rods totalling $25 and a large Chart costing $20. (The very large composite Chart is still used in the Lodge and an identical one is used in Hiram and Lebanon Lodge.) ‘A handsome and appropriate motto’ crafted by Ms. Johanna Glover was presented in June, 1878.
Membership in Mount Zion Lodge grew quickly in the early years. The Lodge reported twenty-one members in 1879 and thirty-nine in 1883. The first candidates raised were Bro. James Tuplin and Bro. John S. Murray.
The Lodge added needed furnishings at a steady rate viz.. Collars at $18 (May 23, 1878), desk and table $8 (June 6, 1878), lamps $ 17.50 (September 5, 1878), carpet $56 (March 4, 1880), 8 spittons (March 1880), stove (November 1878), 3 chairs with walnut trimmings and crimson plush for the three principal Stations $36 (July 3, 1884). Those chairs are still in the Lodge Room and were re-upholstered in blue velvet by W.Bro. Arthur Larkin PM and Mrs. Larkin as a gift to the Lodge in 1977. The Lodge drew the line when it came to funding a new flue and asked the Hall Directors to share the cost because “It adds materially to the whole building.” The flue was built by W.Bro. Thomas Brehaut in November, 1880. To help fund those items each Charter Member was requested to pay a fee of $5 in 1878. That sum included the dues for 1878.