Everett Masons

Undated photo of Everett 137 Masons, courtesy Everett Historical Society

Founding the Lodge

Prior to the formation of Everett Lodge #137, the city of Everett had but one Masonic Lodge, Peninsular, the 95th formed in the State of Washington. Their membership reached a point where some members thought it was advisable to form another lodge; so, on October 4, 1903, ten Master Masons met to discuss the matter. These Masons were M. M Rose, A.E. Thompson, H.W. Holmes, W. C. Koltz, B.W. Sherwood, W.M. Leise, William Sheller, A.E. Curtis, A.O. Solberg and R. Huston. Brothers Rose, Thompson and Holmes were selected to be a committee to prepare an application to the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons of Washington for a dispensation for a new lodge.

It was decided to name the new lodge after the city of Everett, which had taken its name from Everett Colby, son of Charles L. Colby, friend and associate of John D. Rockefeller, Sr. They then adjourned until Octobter 18, 1903. At that date a properly prepared petition was presented; Wm. H. Ross was suggested to the Grand Lodge as the first Master, A.E. Thompson, Senior Warden and H.W. Holmes, Junior Warden.  A request was made to the brothers of Peninsular Lodge to recommend to the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge that the proposed petition be granted. At the next meeting, November 26, 1903, it was confirmed that Peninsular Lodge had acted favorably and the petition had been dispatched to the Grand Lodge.  On February 4, 1904, Wm. H. Ross gaveled a meeting to order and read a message from the Most Worshipful Grand Master Charles Duncan Atkins, who expressed his pleasure to grant the prayer for dispensation, with Thomas M. Reed signing the letter as the Grand Secretary. With this, the Lodge was formally instituted as Everett Lodge, the 137th child of the Grand Lodge of Masons in Washington. 

Notes from early meetings

The first meeting of the Lodge under dispensation was held February 8, 1904. Eight petitions for the degrees and two affiliations were read. The By-laws Committee presented the results of their labors and the report was adopted. An initiation fee of $60 was specified (more than $1500 in 2014 money!) 

The next point of great importance came on July 14, 1904, when a special communication of Grand Lodge was opened in Everett by Past Grand Master John Arthur and Everett Lodge No. 137 was constituted with 33 charter members present. Bills presented at the special communication of constitution amounted to $62.35; rent for two meetings for the month, $50; aprons $40.80; paraphernalia, $54.25; and refreshments, $3.50. Later information indicates that sometimes they adjourned to a restaurant for a meal, which cost the Lodge from $35 to $40.

A letter dated May 6, 1906 from the Most Worshipful Grand Master of California expressed appreciation and thanks for the quick response by Everett Lodge for relief to San Francisco’s earthquake victims. $50 was sent.

Some of those early years were remarkably busy. On July 15, 1908, 12 petitions were read. Many meetings had two, three, four petitions, with affiliates from many jurisdictions.  From the memoirs of Worshipful Brother George Davis Thompson we learn that during the first few years the degree work was conglomeration of many jurisdictions. This was because the members from those jurisdictions conducted the work, of course, as they had learned it, accounting for the minute differences, which must have been very interesting. The basic principles of Masonry, however, are the same the world over.
 

Notable Brothers

During the life of the Lodge, more than 100 Masters have conducted its affairs; through the Depression, periods of prosperity and several wars (including two World Wars).  Lodge membership has varied greatly in size, but through it all we have never had to have a Master "return to the East" for a second term.  In 1951 our good brother, John Ewing presented a new lodge Bible to Everett Lodge in memory of his wife. Each master since then has autographed its flyleaf at the first meeting after their installation.

Over the years the lodge has been honored by the appointments of six members to be Deputies of the Grand Master for District No. 8 of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of Masons in Washington. These were V.W.B. Charles D. Hester (1934-36), V.W.B. J LeRoy French (1942-45), V.W.B. Carl K. Adams (1961-63), V.W.B. Fred Topp (1968-70), M.W.B. G. Santy Lascano (2005-6), and M.W.B. Sam Roberts (2009-2010). 

More recently, two Everett brothers have served as Grand Master of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of Masons in Washington:  M.W.B. G. Santy Lascano (2010), and M.W.B. Sam Roberts (2014).

MWB G. Santy Lascano

 

MWB Sam Roberts

MWB Sam Roberts

Locations

At the time of Everett Lodge’s birth the Masonic Temple was located at the southeast corner of Colby Avenue and Wall Street. Later a “civic” building was being built buy the city of Everett at Wetmore and Everett Avenues, by popular subscription.  When the question of where the title to the property should be vested and private ownership was revealed, something of a scandal erupted and many of the subscriptions were withdrawn. There was a struggle to complete the building and the end result was bankruptcy. At that time, the Masonic Temple Corporation bought the structure out of bankruptcy, remodeled it to fit their needs and, in 1929 Everett Lodge moved in.

The temple, through the efforts of Senator Henry M. Jackson, was placed on the list of National Historical Monuments. The building at Wetmore and Everett Ave. was sold in 1992 and Everett 137 took up temporary residence in Marysville, renting space from Crystal 122 while looking for a new building. A new building was found at 234 Olympic Blvd. Renovation was completed mostly by members of the craft and Everett 137 moved into the new lodge building in 1994. A cornerstone laying ceremony was conducted to christen the new Lodge with M.W.B. Kenneth S. Robinson (Grand Master) present to oversee the work.

Undated photo of the Temple Building on Wetmore & Everett, courtesy of the Everett Historical Society.

Secretaries

The real worker, largely responsible for the success of any lodge, is the Secretary. It is almost phenomenal that in the first 94 years only 11 secretaries have held that office in Everett Lodge. Statisticians may average this to be a little under nine years each, but not so. Some served only one or two years. The victor in the marathon of office holding was Worshipful Brother William Moody Aymar. He petitioned the Lodge in 1911 during the term of W.B. George Davis Thompson, forming a firm friendship that lasted the rest of their lives. W.B. Aymar was raised February 19, 1912. He was elected Secretary for the years 1914, 1915 and 1916. He accepted the office of Junior Warden only after being assured that W.B. Thompson would be Secretary until he finished his term as Master. He was again elected Secretary in 1919 and continued uninterrupted until signing his last set of minutes November 25, 1963, having served for a total of 47 years. V.W.B. Fredrick George Topp, who then served for 14 years, succeeded him. W.B. Donald W. Rose has also sat in the chair of secretary for 15 years until 1995 when medical reasons forced him to leave the office until his timely return in 1997. (These three brethren have accounted for 76 years of secretary-ship of the Lodge).