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Saturday, May 21, 2016

A Masonic City

A post today on the Scottish Rite NMJ's Facebook page was intriguing, but unfortunately didn't include enough information. So I went and looked.

The city of Apopka, Florida (near Orlando) has an unusual feature as part of its official city seal - a Masonic square and compass (just after the word "of" in the image above). According to a Wiki entry (sorry, but it's what I could find):

[E]arly American settlers built a major trading center on the foundations of [an] earlier Indian settlement. Their population was large enough by 1857 to support the establishment of a Masonic lodge. In 1859 the lodge erected a permanent meeting place at what is now the intersection of Main Street (U.S. Highway 441) and Alabama Avenue...
The settlers in the vicinity of "The Lodge" were largely isolated during the Civil War, but the area rebounded once peace was re-established, and a population boom followed the construction of railroad lines through the region.
In 1882 the one square mile surrounding "The Lodge" was officially incorporated under the name "Apopka".

According to the website of Orange Lodge 36 in Apopka, theirs is the oldest surviving Masonic lodge building in continuous use in the state of Florida. It goes on:
Orange Lodge was established in 1856 and is still serving under a warrant issued that year by the Grand Lodge of Florida. This building was erected here in 1859, the upper story has been continually used for lodge meetings. The original lower floor was used as a post office, school, church and general store.  Masons from miles around visited the community, which was known as   “The Lodge” until the town of Apopka was chartered in1882.
They were summoned to Lodge by three blasts of a trumpet.
Orange Lodge No. 36 is a “moon lodge” and meets on the Friday on or before the full moon and two weeks there after, and to this day the sound of the trumpet can still be heard signaling the opening of meetings.

1 comment:

  1. Would love to visit this historic lodge one day.
    Travis Davidson
    Rockvale lodge # 413 Tennessee


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