History of the Lodge of Connaught & Truth No. 521
Soirée in Masonic Clothing Lord Goderich's Proposal and Ceremonies Infidel Lecture -- Proposals for new Building and Removal.
THE YEAR 1853, though not quite as "productive" as the previous year of new Members, did well by comparison by Initiating 20 new Members, Passing 18, and Raising 22, a total of 60 Ceremonies : it had also its extra-special items.
Early in the year more evidence is seen of the close collaboration of the three Lodges in the Town, first, in a Vote of Thanks recorded to Bro. Lister, the Worshipful Master of The Lodge of Harmony, for the very efficient manner he had conducted the Business of the Chair at a Truth Lodge night in February; secondly, in the same month, the Worshipful Masters, Officers and Brethren, collectively and individually, of the Huddersfield Lodge and The Lodge of Truth, applied for a Dispensation, to hold a Ball or Soirée for Masons only, to appear in Masonic Clothing, and that the proceeds, after paying the necessary expenses, should go to the Building Fund of the Orphans Boys' School. This was very readily agreed to by the Deputy Provincial Grand Master, as will be seen from the copy Dispensation below :--
CHARLES LEE, Deputy Provincial Grand Master, acting under the patent and authority of the Right Honble. the Earl of Mexborough, Right Worshipful Provincial Grand Master of West Yorkshire SEND GREETING to the Worshipful Masters, Officers and Brethren collectively and individually of the Huddersfield Lodge, No. 365 and the Lodge Truth, No. 763 conjointly, AND WHEREAS it hath been notified unto me by a memorial dated the 19th of this present month of February, and bearing the signatures respectively of Alfred Smith, W.M., of the Huddersfield Lodge, No. 365, and Bro. Jno. Sykes, P.M., (pro W.M. in his absence by his command) of the Truth Lodge, No. 763, that the Brethren of the said Lodges acting together in Brotherly Communion and with unity of purpose are minded to have a Masonic Soiree, confined to Freemasons and the Ladies, on Wednesday, the 9th of March next, in the Freemason's Hall, in Kirkgate, Huddersfield and have resolved that the proceeds of such Soirée shall be devoted to the "Fund for Building a School for the Orphan Boys of Freemasons.- NOW KNOW YE that I am well pleased to behold Brethren acting together in unity; I am glad to observe the Brethren paying to the Ladies the attention so justly due to them, and I rejoice that the proceeds accruing are to be devoted to Charity and that a most noble and Masonic Charity,and I do hereby grant License and Dispensation unto the said Brethren of the said Lodges, and to all other Masonic Brethren of other Lodges who may think fit to attend the said Masonic Soiree to be and appear in Masonic Clothing and Costume on the occasion, at the time, and in the Hall, severally before-named, and I exhort the Brethren to show how beautiful is TRUE Masonry, for from it springs nothing but that which is good, kind, amicable, courteous, generous, benevolent, and let the Ladies receive from the Brethren those polite attentions which become all men, and we,ll become the Free and Accepted Masons, and let Peace and Harmony reign throughout your ranks. Given at Leeds this 21st day of Febry. A.L. 5853, A.D. 1853.CHARLES LEE, D.P.G.M.
A Minute in May states" That the sum of 2/6 he paid towards the expense of dispensation granted for the late Soiree,"so it looks as if Huddersfield Lodge and The Lodge of Truth organised this on a strictly "50-50" basis.
This was the commencement of a series of functions of this nature, often repeated in later years, resulting in substantial sums of money being raised for the benefit of Masonic Charities.On this occasion, only the Huddersfield Lodge, and not The Lodge of Harmony, joined with The Lodge of Truth; and although The Lodge ofHarmony did, on occasions about that time, participate in such activities, it was thenand has continued throughout its history to bethe exception rather than the rule.
A few months later, in April, 1853, there is recorded vet another very interesting letter in the Minute Book, which is thought worthy of reproduction :
April 28th 1853.
To Thos. Robinson Esqr.
The reason why this Emergency is urged is
that his Lordship cannot leave his Parliamentary duties
for a longer Period than during his next visit to
We are Worshipl. Sir and Brother,
Lord Goderich (afterwards more familiarly
known to the Brethren as The Marquis of Ripon) was duly
balloted for and unanimously elected on the 6th May,
1853. Lord Goderich was Member of Parliament for
Huddersfield at that time, and quite young--only 25 years
of age. The honour of Initiating this distinguished
gentleman at an Emergency Lodge on the 17th May, 1853,
fell to the lot of W. Bro. J. T. V. Hardy, who was a Past
Master of Fortitude and Old Cumberland Lodge, No. 12,
before coming to the Lodge of Harmony in 1852, and who
The Minutes do not reveal who took part
in His Lordship's Raising Ceremony on 25th November,
1853, but it is most interesting to observe that when
Lord Goderich reached the Chair, which he did in a very
short time, viz., on 1st June, 1855, it was once more W.
Bro. J. T. V. Hardy who had the honour of Installing him
as Master of The Lodge. There is nothing to
Thus it will be seen that Lord Goderich
became actively interested in the Lodge at a most
important point in its history. Although the Foundation
Stone was laid in the period between his
"The Worshipful Master with great
pleasure informed the Brethren that, in conjunction with
Past Masters Sykes and Johnson and others they had had an
interview with Bro. Reid,on the subject of his having let
his room for an improper purpose at the close of which
Bro. Reid consented that such arrangement should be set
aside."It was also moved and seconded
It is pleasing to note the unanimous
decision of the Brethren at this attempted desecration of
their Temple, and it apparently caused the Brethren
seriously to think of moving. The Brethren of The Lodge
of Harmony were apparently in full sympathy, and offered
the Lodge of Truth shelter and accommodation, for it was
moved and seconded and also
That looks as if the Landlord of the Rose
& Crown had repented of his error in attempting to
let the room for an improper purpose, and, being desirous
of retaining The Lodge of Truth as Tenants, was offering
them new terms for exclusive use.
2nd December, 1853.
9th December, 1853.
6th January, 1854.
It seems that the meetings at the Rose
& Crown continued the even tenor of their ways for a
few months at any rate, but, whether it was on the old
terms or on new terms, there is nothing to say. In
August, however, this resolution appeared :--
6th August, 1854.
So the determination to move was still
there, and there is a suggestion that the Brethren
believed that "where there's a will there's a
4th September, 1854.
6th October, 1854.
After so many unanimous resolutions on these important questions it is somewhat surprising to find some slight difference of opinion.
3rd November, 1854.
The amendment was carried, there being
four dissentients, and a Building Committee was appointed
to make all the necessary arrangements. By Installation
Night, 4th December, 1851, it was decided that the Corner
Stone be laid on the day of the Festival of St. John. The
recorded report of that Committee, as appearing in the
Minutes, is reproduced at the beginning
It was during this period, viz., on 14th
May, 1855, that W. Bro. W. Smith, P.M. of the
Huddersfield Lodge, to whom references have been made
earlier in this History, was made an Honorary Member of
The Lodge. In July, 1855, the Landlord of the Rose &
Crown (Bro. Reid) had a grievance. A letter was read from
him "complaining that the money which he advanced to
prevent Mr. Holyoak from delivering an Infidel Lecture in
his room had only been partially advanced to him, when it
was proposed that the question be adjourned 6
The Brethren were a little apprehensive
of damage to their property; it was unanimously decided
to move the organ away from the Rose & Crown at once
to a room kindly offered by one of the Brethren. The
Worshipful Master, Bro. Lord Goderich, was away in
Scotland at the time of the removal of The Lodge to
Fitzwilliam Street, but the Deputy Provincial Grand
Master "allowed a dispensation of his presence when
the motion for removal is made," and the Worshipful
Master sent a cheque towards the Building of the new
Hall; and on Friday, the 5th
Freemasons' Hall, Fitzwilliam Street.