St. George’s Lodge No. 4
The earliest Communications of St. George’s Lodge were held in the Georgetown Courthouse. In January 1862 consideration was given to having more permanent quarters in the new Academy but since a long-term arrangement could not be obtained, the Brethren chose to move into space above by W.Bro. Joseph Wightman’s store. (That 2 1/2 storey building at the corner of Richmond and Main is still standing and was recently renovated as ‘The Georgetown Inn.’) In 1863 W.Bro. Angus MacPhail was instructed to build a box to store the Jewels and implements of the Lodge. In the autumn of 1863 the opportunity came for the Lodge to have more permanent space in a church hall that had been vacated by the Bible Christians. The Hall was located on the south side of Grafton Street immediately east of the railroad. The Orange Lodge of Georgetown owned the Hall but offered to rent or to sell the rights to one-half of the Hall. The Brethren opted to purchase part ownership at £90 over eighteen months. St. George’s held its first Communication in the Hall on December 3, 1863. The Orangemen moved the Hall to a site near the corner of Glenelg Street and West Street ( north side). Meacham’s 1872 Atlas showed the Hall on property belonging to David Kaye, a Charter Member of the Lodge. Within a few years the Orange Lodge was closed and St. George’s Lodge gained full ownership of ‘The Temple’. In March 1864 a motion was passed in the Lodge to petition the Legislature of the Province “for an act of incorporation for this St. George’s Lodge.” The Hall was a wood-frame building that required considerable maintenance over its lifetime. There was almost yearly reference to having the Hall whitewashed. In 1886 John Smith was paid $2.75 for the work.
St. George’s was one of the eight Provincial Lodges that participated in the organization of the Grand Lodge of Prince Edward Island in 1875. Prior to that time St. George’s Lodge like many of the others operated under the Provincial Grand Lodge of the Grand Lodge of England for Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland. Several of the Brethren of St. George’s held high Office in the new Grand Lodge of Prince Edward Island in the early years. R.W.Bro. G. Albert Aitken was Junior Grand Warden (1876-77) and Senior Grand Warden (1899-1900). R.W.Bro. Ewen Stewart, the local school principal, was elected Junior Grand Warden in 1885 and Senior Grand Warden in 1886. This was the era when M.W.Bro. John Yeo was the perennial Grand Master. In 1909 R.W.Bro J.W. MacPhee became Deputy Grand Master. (R.W.Bro. MacPhee’s picture is among the Georgetown Collection in the Temple in Montague. R.W.Bro. MacPhee was the recipient of a large silver pitcher and tray from the Brethren of St. George’s Lodge in 1906. It is displayed in the Grand Lodge Cabinet in the Ante Room of the Temple in Charlottetown.) Three members of St. George’s Lodge have held the position of Grand Master:
M.W.Bro. James D. Stewart (1915-16) was proud of the Honour Roll of sixty-four Freemasons from Prince Edward Island who were then part of the Allied Forces in WWI.
M.W.Bro. Albert Edward Lavers (1963-64) presided in the year that Prince Edward Island recorded the largest number of Freemasons ever (1508).
M.W.Bro. Norman B. Thompson ( 1973-74) initiated several meetings to establish plans for the Centennial of Grand Lodge in 1975. Three Lodges in the Jurisdiction were somewhat inactive at that time and M.W.Bro. Thompson offered support and guidance to help rejuvenate those Lodges. The subsequent reports show the results of his good counsel.