30 November 2013

You Just Never Know

.... where the next clue will show up! 


As I continue to work towards a more detailed understanding of the role of fraternal societies in our collective social history, I seem to be unable to get away from fraternal organizations at all! It seems every corner, every new activity or venture results in at least one new discovery for me. Once you open your eyes to the impact of these organizations across the United States, they're influence is obvious. 

A day trip to Georgetown, Colorado this weekend (designed to give our family a little adventure and avoid the Black Friday mess) resulted in the discovery of this fantastic building, the Masonic Temple in that town. 


©Ancestral Journeys, 2013


The Temple was constructed in 1892, one of the "oldest continuously active fraternal orders in Colorado." 

(National Historic Landmark District plaque, placed in 2007 by the Town of Georgetown and Historic Georgetown, Inc.)



©Ancestral Journeys, 2013




The front door was full of information!
©Ancestral Journeys, 2013


In 1912, the pioneer lodge and Georgetown's second lodge (No. 48) combined, and purchased this building in 1926, where they have met since. 

(National Historic Landmark District plaque, placed in 2007 by the Town of Georgetown and Historic Georgetown, Inc.)



©Ancestral Journeys, 2013

This last picture, a close up of the text on the main doors to the building, tells us quite a bit about the extensive role this organization had, and still has, in Georgetown. 

  • Georgetown Lodge #12, A.F. & A.M. is the Masonic Lodge. (Chartered 1867, 146 years ago.)
  • Georgetown Chapter #4 R.A.M. is the Royal Arch Masons, and they still have a very active calendar. (Chartered 1875, 138 years ago.)
  • Tyrian Council #11 R. & S.M. is yet another Masonic branch, again, still very active. (Chartered 1904, 109 years ago.)
  • Georgetown Commandry #4 K.T. would be the Knights Templar division. (Chartered 1880, 133 years ago.)
  • Georgetown Silver Star Chapter #42; indeed, the Silver Star, and the only one I could not find an active website link for.  (Chartered 1899, 114 years ago.)

The oldest is the A.F. & A.M., which is necessary, since all the others are auxiliaries of sorts. With the Tyrian Council the youngest at 109 years, imagine the history within the walls of this grand building! 


The street scene of Georgetown. The Masonic Lodge is the brick
structure in the center, with the point on the roof.
©Ancestral Journeys, 2013.

It does beg the question, for all of you who say you had an ancestor in the Masonic Lodge... do you know which one?