True Brothers Lodge No. 8
The first Communication for True Brothers Lodge in Crapaud was on May 10, 1898 in the upper level of a warehouse owned by W.Bro. Donald MacLean, the Worshipful Master. The negotiated rent was $20 annually. The Brethren voted unanimously to give Bro. MacLean use of Lodge funds as advance rent to fit up the building as a Lodge Room. Bro. MacLean, Bro. K.C. Holm and Bro. H.W. Robertson were appointed to a committee to procure furnishings and carpets, to make the necessary arrangements for a picnic and to invite the Grand Lodge to dedicate the Lodge Room. Grand Lodge held an Emergent Communication at Crapaud Corner on July 9, 1898 for the purpose of dedicating the New Hall. (A report of the dedication ceremony appeared in the 1899 Grand Lodge Proceedings.) M.W.Bro. Leonard Morris, Grand Master, was welcomed by the Worshipful Master after which the Grand Lodge Officers took up their respective stations. Prayer was offered by the Grand Chaplain, V.W.Bro. John W.Wadman, of Tokio, Japan. The Working Tools were surrendered by the architect and the usual examination of the new Lodge Room was made by the Grand Lodge Officers. The report being satisfactory, the Grand Master solemnly dedicated the Hall to Freemasonry, to Virtue and to Universal Benevolence in accordance with ancient form and usages. He then addressed the Brethren. True Brothers Lodge had a membership of eighteen in 1898. Within a decade the membership doubled.
After the death of W.Bro. Donald MacLean PM, the Hall was purchased from his widow, Ella May, for $300. (Minutes, December 9, 1924). Although the building served as a Lodge Room for only five more years, the Brethren engaged in considerable planning, fundraising and expenditure on the structure during that interval. Trustees were first appointed in April 1924. Lodge members and their relatives prepared and presented a four-act play, “The Noble Outcast”, as a fundraiser. In April 1926 title to the property was “vested in the Benevolent Fund of Grand Lodge to be held in trust for True Brothers Lodge No. 8 A.F. & A.M. or any other Masonic Lodge which may be its successors.” In 1926 the Lodge Room was carpeted and a new stove was purchased. The exterior was painted and the roof was shingled. True Brothers Lodge was able to purchase the property under an amendment to the Act incorporating the Trustees of the Grand Lodge Benevolent Fund to enable non-incorporated Craft Lodges to purchase property and to have the Deed of Conveyance held ‘In Trust’ by the Trustees of the Benevolent Fund. (Proceedings, 1918, pp. 53-54) The amendment was enacted in the Provincial Legislature in 1918 at a time when Prince Edward Lodge No. 14 was engaged in a long and difficult struggle to purchase a Hall in Stanley Bridge from the local Church.