Saint George Lodge A.F. & A.M.
Saint George Lodge was founded on January 24, 1877, in Good Templars Hall, located at the corner of East Market and Main streets in the town of Brockton Massachusetts. Three years earlier Brockton was still part of North Bridgewater and three years after Saint George was instituted, Brockton was chartered as a city.
This new lodge was primarily petitioned to serve the growing needs of local campello Masons who, in the latter half of the 19th century did not have public transportation traveling home from evening lodge meetings at the Paul Revere lodge, near the center of Brockton. A charter group of 20 Masons, all prominent citizens from the campello area of Brockton, decided affirmative action was needed if they were to continue Masonic membership.
The Most Worshipful Charles A. Walsh, Grand Master of Masons in Massachusetts, granted dispensation on February 14th 1877 and presented the Saint George Lodge charter on March 13th 1878. This Historic event took place only 6 days after the largest fire Brockton had ever experienced when the P. S. Leach Shoe factory was destroyed on March 7, 1878.
The early meetings were held at Good Templars Hall from January 24, 1877 through October 17, 1883 and from December 5, 1883 to January 1886 in Goodall block. A permanent home was established on January 20th 1886 at Kingman Block. Over 1500 meetings were held there until the purchase of the former Salvation Army building on Nilsson St on December 9, 1959. After renovations our first meeting was held there on April 6, 1960.
The first Master of Saint George Lodge was Harvey N.P. Hubbard founding a long line of distinguished Masters, public officials and members of the fraternity.
Saint George is a lodge of Notable Masons and public figures such as Grand Master of Masons in Massachusetts Roger Keith, Grand High Priest of the Royal Arch Chapter Ralph Copeland, U. S. Congressman Hastings Keith and five Mayors of Brockton including it’s first Mayor Cibna Keith, followed by Charles Williamson, John S. Burbank, Roger Keith and Fred D. Rowe.
As Saint George lodge grew, we were invited to and attended the laying of the corner stone of Brockton City Hall on May 30, 1892.
By the time Saint George celebrated its 50th anniversary under Wor. George W. Harrub, in 1928 the city of Brockton was beginning to become highly industrialized. The city was beginning to thrive mainly in the production of boots, shoes and other leather products. Most of the shoes and boots that were manufactured and used by soldiers as well as the public during WWI and WWII were manufactured in Brockton. Even today, Brockton is widely known as “Shoe City USA.”
In answer to the growing labor demands of industry during this era immigrants came from many countries to work and hopefully attain the American dream. A number of Swedish immigrants settled in the campello area of Saint George lodge. Often, a man would work with others in a factory, attend lodge that evening and attend South Congregational Church in campello on Sunday, brining together the elements of family, church and lodge.
In 1978 we celebrated our 100th anniversary. Wor. Albert M. Greiner was Master that year. We saw the great blizzard and the church was already gone. The bell of the church now sits at the old site of the corner of Perkins Ave and Main St.
Regrettably, the once thriving shoe industry no longer exists in Brockton having been displaced by foreign competition.
In the new Millennium Saint George lodge still thrives. We sold our building on Nilsson St in 2000 and moved to larger headquarters at 279 Prospect St.
The scythe of time has swung many times and gone with it are the reflection of many fine memories. However, the same enthusiasm, commitment and principles that inspired 20 brothers in 1877 still exist among our members and the indomitable spirit of friendship, morality and brotherly love upon which the foundation of this lodge was built, still prevail to this day.