newport masonic temple

Discussion in 'General Freemasonry Discussion' started by cambridgemason, Dec 14, 2009.

  1. cambridgemason

    cambridgemason Premium Member Premium Member

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    A number of years ago I had the pleasure to visit the Newport R.I. Masonic Temple. This was in the old section of Newport, just around the corner from the oldest Synagogue in the US. It was funded back in the 1760's by the use of a lottery, which was granted by the King of England at that time.
    What I understand is that the foundation was begun, but war broke out in the early 1770's. The burning of the Gatsby took place in R.I. and was really the first shot heard round the world. The brethren fearing that the red coats would destroy the foundation of the new Temple, supposaly covered it over with hay or other materials til the end of the war. It was around 1801 that the Temple was finished. The main lodge room according or rumors had chains for floor joists and was said that when you walked around the room the floor would sway. A cable-tow, from a masted ship, was donated by her captain and it was around around the border of the Lodge room ceiling.It was a beautiful building, two stories high, the game room was dedicated by Pres. either Truman or FDR. Sorry been many a year since I was there. It had a widows watch on the roof and according to history they would charge five cents to climb the stairs and look out the widows watch over the harbor. In the roof framework you can read the names of the carpenters and contractors that worked on the building over the years. It had the most beautiful room of reflection(this is currently in the Museum of our National Heritage in Lexington Mass.) The room of reflection looked like an Arabian tent. Another room had a ceiling a gorgeous stain glass window, around the roof border of that room were windows so during the daylight the sun would come in and light up the ceiling.
    The last lodge that was in the building could no longer afford the maintenance of it and back in the mid 90's sold it. I hear that it was going to become an artist studio and school. They had a auction in the last days of the building, and as curator of my masonic temple I viewed it a number of days after the auction. It had on the front of the building on the second floor made out of wood the S&C on one side and the all seeing eye on the other. These two wooden signs are also in the Museum in Lexington, Mass. .
     
  2. JEbeling

    JEbeling Guest

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    Very sad they had to sell it.. ! is there a website with pictures of the old lodge building...?
     
  3. cambridgemason

    cambridgemason Premium Member Premium Member

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    no, have not found out what ever happened to the old girl. I have pics somewhere in my files but will take months to find them. One of these days I will travel back down to see what they have done to the Temple.

    I can not download a new pic of the Temple, but if you google or search, St. John's Lodge, Newport R.I. , you can go to Reed Digital Collection and there is a newer pic of the Old Lodge Temple in Newport RI.
     
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2009

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