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Partick St Mary's Lodge No 117
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Partick St Mary's Lodge No 117
Antient Free and Accepted Masons of Scotland.
Within the Province of Glasgow

Partick St Mary's Lodge No 117

The History of Partick St Mary's Lodge No 117, part two

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The dissenters continued to meet in Partick under the old name and number, but finally moved to Glasgow in 1807 when they received a revised Charter from Mother Lodge of Kilwinning, the last charter granted by her before joining the Grand Lodge of Scotland. The name given was that of "Glasgow Partick Kilwinning St John's Lodge No 77", according to Napier. The Charter and all the records of this Lodge were unfortunately lost when the Lodge was destroyed by fire in 1837, according to Napier, but in 1839 according to Bell.

The Speculative section, after the arbitration, continued to meet and initiate candidates without a Charter. Some attempt seems to have been made around August 1766 to apply for a Charter, but no record of this can be traced at the Grand Lodge of Edinburgh (Mary's Chapel) No 1. However, a petition was drawn up by the Lodge, now at least 50 members strong, on the 10th February 1796 and submitted through the Royal Arch Lodge of Glasgow (the original name of the Provincial Grand Lodge of Glasgow) which, being approved, was carried to the Grand Lodge of Scotland . The Charter was granted under the name and title of "Partick St Mary's Lodge No 150" and the date was 29th March 1769. It was signed by the Earl of Dalhousie, Grand Master; it was received in the Lodge on 21st July 1769.

In 1817, the number was changed from 150 to 115, and in 1846 it was again changed to 117, which it has remained ever since. There is no record as to the reasons for these changes in the number: they simply appear in the Minutes of the meetings.  The name "St Mary's" owes its origin to the fact that the old Lodge Room built in 1619 by one of the Craig Family, in which Partick Kilwinning Lodge No 64 met, was in fact the local inn or public house. In the upper left hand window there was a transparency of St Mary, which when the room was illuminated, was a well known focus of admiration and wonder to the people of the district. When the new Lodge was formed, it was natural that the members would want to take the name of the transparency that had stood over their place of meeting for so long. The Old Inn was in Castlebank Street, at the foot of Keith Street, and a water colour of it is still in possession of the Lodge.

The Charter and By Laws of the Lodge limit its place of meeting to Partick, but during a very chequered career this rule was not always adhered to.

Meetings were held every Quarter, viz: Candlemass, Whitsunday, Lammas, and Martinmass. In 1811, the date of the installation was changed to St Mary's Day: July 22nd. At this particular meeting, the Master after being duly elected and installed, and presiding over the meeting for a short time resigned upon payment of fine of five shillings which was unanimously remitted back to him.  Another Brother was elected to fill the vacancy. In 1857 the date of Installation was again changed to December 27th.

East end of the Lodge pre-decoratation

Torchlight processions were held on 29th December, and on the Friday nearest to 29th March, the date still being used by the Lodge for its Annual Festival.

Interim meetings were held at various times between quarterly meetings, sometimes as many as three times a week. These meetings were not held in the Lodge Hall but usually in the house of one of the members: for preference, that of a publican. This is borne out by various Minutes giving the names of the meeting places, viz: Andrew McEwan, Vintner; Anderson, William Fowler, Vinter; George Muir, Vintner; William Craig, Vinter; Robert Craig, William Grace, Alex Logan, Vintners; and Andrew McEwan, Baker. On three occasions the meetings were held in the house of a woman: on the 27th December 1815 and again on the 4th May 1816 in the Old Bridge Inn, run by a Mrs Craig, Vintner; and on the 15th March 1818 at the house of a Mrs Fowler, Vintner.

In those days the meetings were called by the Tyler going round each of the members with the Master's command to meet at a certain time and place. The emoluments of the Tyler are not noted, but he was periodically voted the sum of four shillings and six pence to buy shoes. At a meeting on August 19th 1770, it was passed that the Lodge should not be opened till one hour after the time appointed by the Master, and that all Lodge meetings, other than that on St John's Day, be closed by 10pm. This is one rule that never seems to have been enforced. 

During the later part of the Eighteenth and the early part of the Nineteenth century, the behaviour of some of the members, and in consequence the fortunes of the Lodge, reach a fairly low point, largely due to the fact that meetings, seemed to have been more for social reasons than business, reflected in the places used for these meetings.

Attempts were made from time to time by some more worthy members to raise the character of the Lodge, and this may have been one of the reasons why the Lodge moved to Anderson for a few months in 1810, and again for a longer period in 1814. On the other hand, the moves may have been only a desire for a change of venue to carry on with the debauchery which so often took place as an excuse for a Meeting. For quite long periods the management of the Lodge certainly passed into the hands of some unworthy Brethren, its only periods of renewed but short lived vigour depending upon some public occasion, such as the laying of a foundation stone.  At this time the character of the Lodge was such as to be a barrier to all respectable people holding fellowship with it.

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Lodge Syllabus
  • 3rd January
    (special meeting)

    Exem degree
    Instruction Class by PM Bro Alan Cuthill
    meeting opens at 19:30
  • 3rd January
    Exem degree
    Instruction Class by PM Bro Alan Cuthill
  • 17th January
    2nd degree
    By Lodge Kelvin Partick No 1207
  • 7th February

    TBC
  • 21st February

    TBC
  • 7th March

    Provincial Grand Lodge of Glasgow Annual Visit
  • 21st March

    TBC
  • 4th April

    TBC
  • 18th April

    TBC
  • 2nd May

    TBC
  • 16th May

    TBC


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