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Rio Grande Lodge #81

Scott J

Registered User
Masonry came to Brownsville on Feb. 25, 1849 when the GrandMaster of Texas permitted 17 members to form a Lodge to be known as Rio GrandeLodge No. 56 with John C. McCleland as Worshipful Master.
R.E. Clements was to leave on horseback to Austin to obtainthe charter. But, due to many difficulties he arrived too late. The No. 56 wasassigned to Warren Lodge in Caldwell, TX. Finally on Jan. 23, 1851 a charterwas granted to Brownsville and Rio Grande Lodge No. 81 began work.
It has continued with few interruptions, Union Soldiers halted lodge meetings for a short time during the Civil War. Meetings were temporarily suspended in 1882 during the Yellow Fever Epidemic and again in 1918 during the Influenza Epidemic.

Rio Grande Lodge #81 has been meeting at the same building since 1914. Formerly it was the Cameron County Courthouse.


Premium Member
My Grandfather was a member of Rio Grande #81!


J. Luke

Registered User
My Great Grandfather was a Member of Brownsville Tx. Rio Grande Lodge #81 in 1855...Does anyone know where the Original Lodge meetings were held before the County Courthouse Location??