Morningside Masonic Association

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A HISTORY OF WATSONIAN LODGE.  NUMBER 1375

 

“Our” Lodge owes its existence to

one man and one man only -

William S. Malloch as witness the

following letter to the Editor of

“The Watsonian”, Published in the

July number, 1930.    

 

Bro. W.S. Malloch

 

Sir,

 I am sure the more ways former pupils may keep in touch with each other the better.  We have Clubs, most athletic, with this object in view, but as we grow older individual interest in such Clubs tends to diminish. May I avail myself of the Courtesy of your columns to advocate the formation of a  Masonic Lodge as likely to support a felt want to many - particularly in the Edinburgh District. There are hundreds of Watsonian Craftsmen in Scotland and year by year the number increases. It would give added zest to their Freemasonry were they to enjoy its privileges in a Lodge maintaining the associations of their School-days. That such opportunities are appreciated may be instanced by the fact that in England many of the large public schools have flourishing Lodges of “Old Boys". Quite recently also a distinguished Scottish School established such a Lodge while another is also in progress of formation It is surely feasible to erect a Lodge of Watsonians which will command strong support and maintain and uphold the traditions we all cherish. I need hardly remind Masonic readers that the Grand Secretary Bro. T. G. Winning is an enthusiastic Watsonian, and from him the project I have discussed would receive every assistance. If the Brethren interested will kindly send me a Post Card to this address inviting me to call a meeting to discuss the matter, I shall be delighted to do so, if sufficient support is forthcoming.

 W.S. MALLOCH,

41 Charlotte Square,

EDINBURGH

PROPOSED NEW LODGE TO BE CALLED THE WATSONIAN 

1st December, 1930.

“Proposed Watsonian Masonic Lodge" December, 1930.

 A considerable number of intending Founder Members have come forward and more are expected. A meeting of all interested was held in 19 Hill Street, Edinburgh, on Monday 1st December, 1930, to approve of a petition for a Charter being presented to Grand Lodge to nominate the first Office Bearers, and to fix fees, and make other arrangements.  We are informed the fees proposed to be charged are moderate. The Proposal to form a Watsonian Lodge has been enthusiastically supported by a large number of Watsonians including Bro. T. G. Winning (Grand Secretary) and Bro. W. S. Malloch (Prov. Gr. Master of Midlothian) and Bro. J. D. Tod who is Master-designate. The Consecration to take place in the Freemason's Hall George Street, Edinburgh, on 19th March, 1931 , by the Grand Master Mason, Bro. A.A. Hagart Spiers of Elderslie, D.L., J. P. The Lodge meetings will be held in the ante-room of the Hall (Archibald Place) the use of which has been kindly granted by the Merchant Company, Watsonians interested to communicate With the Lodge Secretary Bro. W. D. Winchester. 

 19th March, 1931.

 The Erection and Consecration of The Watsonian Lodge No. 1375 Edinburgh, and the Installation of Office-Bearers took place in the Freemasons Hall, 96 George Street, Edinburgh, on Thursday 19th March, 1931 , at 6 o’clock eventide . Among those present were:-

The Most Worshipful Grand Master Mason, Bro. A. A. Hagart Spiers of Elderslie.

The Right Hon. The Lord Belhaven and Stenton, C.I.E.  D.L., R.W. Past Substitute Grand Master.

Bro. J. S. Waterston, acting Senior Grand Warden.

Bro. Dr. Douglas L. G. Radford, acting Junior Grand Warden.

Bro. T. G. Winning, Grand Secretary.

Bro. Rev. T. B. Stewart Thomson, M.A., B.D., Senior Grand Chaplain.

Grand Lodge was opened in the First Degree, passed and raised to the Third Degree. The Senior Grand Chaplain offered up prayer followed by the Consecration Hymn.

Oration 

The Senior Grand Chaplain Bro, the Rev. T. B. Stewart Thomson gave the oration on the "nature and objects" of Freemasonry.

 "The Initiation of a new undertaking, the birth of a new life, is a solemn and interesting occasion, accompanied by its own appropriate signs and ceremonies. When a little child is baptised into the Christian Church, we find ourselves speculating as to what manner of man or woman it may become. When a gallant ship is christened, slips from its Ways amid the cheers of the onlookers, feels the first slow heave of the open sea, we wonder what perils and adventures lie before it. When the foundation stone is laid in the North East corner of some stately and super edifice the minds eye draws a picture of the complete structure, a realisation of its architect's dream, and so to-night is an historic occasion - The Erection and Consecration of a new Lodge in our Scottish Freemasonry, one which, we hope, will remain through the ages a standing memorial of our Ancient and honourable order. We try to imagine what manner of Craftsmen will tread its pavement long after we ourselves have taken up our stone from the quarries to the Great Taskmaster of us all. A Lodge is, or should be, a great factory of character, a moulding place for human hearts.  The generations of the past look down on us to-night seeking to know whether we are worthy to carry on their traditions, whether we are dedicated to the task of enlightening minds, purifying souls, and establishing happiness in the paths of life, This thought of our duty to the past and the future as well as the present is happily exemplified in the special characteristics of The Watsonian Lodge.

To our Schools we all owe much ~ not merely book learning, that, paradoxical though it may seem, is often the least of our bent, we owe them a spirit intangible, yet none the less real - the spirit of comradeship and of unselfishness, of loyalty, the spirit of fair play. Nowhere, I venture to claim, can this brotherhood be more fittingly and happily preserved and renewed than in the ranks of Freemasonry. This evening we do not dedicate a Temple of Stone and Lime, we raise to God's Glory the house, not made with hands, eternal in the Heavens. The greatest danger to which our order is constantly exposed is the danger of formalism. You remember that when the Jews built their Temple in Jerusalem, they grew so proud of the splendid furnishings, its massive splendour, its external beauty, that they forgot Johovah for whose worship it was raised. And as their punishment He razed it to the ground, not one stone was left standing upon another. In our Craft, there are many beautiful symbols, but the symbol is only the outward manifestation of an inward truth. Don't let us stop at the outside. There are men - we all know them who can repeat the Ritual backwards, who are never absent from a Lodge Meeting, who are steeped in all the fascinating Love and Wisdom of Freemasonry - but they are not good Masons. It is the spirit that counts. Until the tenents of our Order are demonstrated in daily life we are ritualists only and not Freemasons. The neutral world cannot penetrate our Secrets, but it can and does penetrate our lives, and see in them the true Worth of what we profess. That is the acid test of our sincerity. 

The Motto of this new Lodge is a fine one - EX CORDE CARITAS  "Charity from the Heart". It is the lesson so beautifully taught in the First Degree.

'The hairt's aye

The pairt' s aye that maks us richt or wrong'

That and so it is our prayer that the Office-Bearers and members of the Watsonian Lodge erected in the name of T.G.A.O.T.U. may ever be filled with that Charity that beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things"

DEO SOLI LAUS ET GLORIA. To God alone be the praise and the Glory.

Lodge Proclaimed             

The most Worshipful the Grand Master Mason called upon the Grand Director of Ceremonies to proclaim the Lodge.  This duty having been performed,the Senior Grand Chaplain offered up a           prayer. The R.W.M. designate and the Office-Bearers designate proceeded round the Lodge room and saluted the most Worshipful the Grand Master Mason as Master Masons.

Grand Lodge Closed, Watsonian    Lodge opened.

Grand Lodge was closed in full form and Watsonian Lodge No. 1375 was opened in the First Degree by the Grand Master Mason.

A board of Installed Masters was formed and Bro. John D. Tod was installed in  the Chair of King Solomon and the remainder of the Office-Bearers were installed.

Honorary Membership     

After thanking the most Worshipful the Grand Master Mason for carrying through the Erection and Consecration of the Lodge the R.W.M, requested him to take the obligation as an Honorary Member and to sign the Roll Book.

A Jewel was then presented to the Grand Master Mason.

After the Grand Lodge Office-Bearers had retired the R.W.M, conferred Honorary Membership and Jewels to :

Bro. Andrew Wilson P.D., G.M, Barbadoe and Bro. Alex. Coull, Lodge of Edinburgh ( Mary's Chapel)  No. 1 .

Bye-Laws            

Bros. W. S. Malloch and T. G. Winning were appointed to frame the bye-laws of the Lodge, and they were also appointed Members of the Committee.

Lodge Closed     

The Lodge was closed in due and ancient form and adjourned to Dinner in the adjoining Hall.

27/3/31  Comm. Meeting 

At a Committee Meeting held on 27th March, 1931, a suggestion was put forward that the names of Founder Members should be printed on Lodge Billets. It was decided this was unnecessary but it was agreed that a Scroll containing names of Founder Members should be made. Brother Francis C. Inglis presented the R.W.M. with a framed copy of the Menu Card and Toast List signed by those present at the Consecration Dinner.

9th April, 1931

Lodge Meeting   

The First Regular Meeting of the Watsonian Lodge No. 1375 was held in the ante-room of the Hall at George Watson's College, Archibald Place, on Thursday 9th April 1931 at 8 o'clock eventide.

Affiliation             

The First two applications for membership of the Lodge by Affiliation were received from :

Bro. Ernest Llewellyn Godfrey, Master Mason of Lodge Roman Eagle No. 160

and Bro. William Dallas Jamie, Master Mason of Lodge St. David No. 36.

Application for Membership  

The First application for Membership of the Lodge as engrossed on Page 13 of Minute Book No. 1 reads : - 

Application for Membership : Mr. Hendry James Findlay Profession ~ Teacher.

Bro. Findlay was the first Editor of the Watsonian Magazine                              

Treasurer 

The first Treasurer of the Lodge was Bro. William B. Roberton now a Past Master.

Annual General   Meeting  

At a General Meeting held on 30th Septernber, 1931, it was unanimously agreed that the nomination of Office-Bearers take place at the November Meeting, the Installation at the Regular Meeting in December and the Annual General Meeting at the Regular Meeting in January ; Annual Test Fee to be 10/- and that qualified members outwith Scotland should be allowed to commute by a single payment of £5. 5. -. The proofs of the Lodge Bye-Laws were approved

Installation           1931.  

At the Installation Meeting in December, 1931, Bro. John D. Tod was installed R.W.M. for a second term. The R.W. Installing Master was Bro. W. S. Malloch, Prov. Gr. Master of Midlothian. At the Regular Meeting in January, 1932, Bro. Malloch was installed as Depute Master. By the l0th February, 1932, the Merchant Company Education Board  had granted the Lodge the use of a room in the new School on certain conditions, which were accepted with than 

10th February, 1932

Bye-Laws  

At a General Committee Meeting held on 10th February, 1932, the Bye-Laws approved by Grand Committee with modifications were fully discussed.

Bro. W. S. Malloch the Chairman retired from the meeting and Bro. Leslie R. Grant took the Chair.   The Committee expressed disappointment that commutation of the Annual Test Fee in the case of members resident outside Scotland was not to be permitted. As nothing appeared in the constitution limiting the right of Commutation, the Secretary was instructed to forward a copy of the Minute to Grand Secretary requesting that Grand Committee re-consider the point which is of some importance to the Lodge.

17th March, 1932 

Honorary Membership     

At a Regular Meeting held on 17th March, 1932, Honorary Membership and a Jewel was conferred upon Bro. James Syme Waterston, Substitute Grand Master.

Mark Lodge         

The First Mark Degree was worked at the Regular Meeting held on 20th October, 1932, with Bro. W. S. Malloch as R.W.M. when seven brethern received their mark.

New Lodge Room                

The First Regular Meeting of the Watsonian Lodge to be held in the new school at Colinton Road took place on the 20th October, 1932. At the Regular Meeting held on Thursday 7th November 1932, intimation was made that Bro. Major Andrew Wilson, an Honorary Member of the Lodge, had been elected Master of the Merchant Company.

Installation 1932

At the Installation Meeting in December, 1932, Bro. Duncan R. Matheson was installed R.W.M. in succession to Bro. John D. Tod, who had served as R.W.M. for two Sessions. Bro. Matheson was Dux of the School in 1901.

In November, l933, Right Wor. Bro. H.R.H. The Prince of Wales, was affiliated to Lodge of Edinburgh (Mary's Chapel ) No. 1 .

Bro. W. B, Roberton,  W. Senr. Warden and Bro. W. D. Winchester, Secretary, represented the Watsonian Lodge at the Ceremony.

 Lodge Furnishings

A Sub-Committee was formed to prepare designs for Lodge furnishings and Bro. J. M. Johnston and Bro. T. W. Marwich both of them practising Architects were invited to execute designs. The new furnishings were placed and used at the Regular Meeting in November, 1934.  Bro. J. M. Johnston passed to Grand Lodge above in October 1934, before he had an opportunity of seeing his plans in effect. His Son, Bro. J. S. Johnston supervised completion of the work after his Father's death. 

Insurance 31/10/34

The Insurance of the Lodge furnishings was increased from £100 to £300. At this point mention should be made that the furnishings were all gifted and a list of the Donors is given at the end of these Notes. It is interesting to learn that the furniture was made by Scott's of George Street, Edinburgh. It is related that one Monday morning the Head of Scott's entered his workshop and requested all Master Masons among his Workmen to take a step forward. All the men stepped forward in one movement, leaving a small figure in the background - the apprentice. The men were informed they were to be engaged in making furniture for the Watsonian Lodge.

Installation 1934

Bro. Duncan R. Matheson having served as R.W.M. for two years was succeeded in the Chair by Bro. Leslie R. Grant.

Following the Installation Ceremony Honorary Membership and Jewels were conferred upon Bro. Brig. Gen. Thomas Hope Stewart, R.W.M. Lodge Edinburgh Academy Centenary No. 1327, and Bro. Lt.Col. A. H. Buchanan Dunlop. R.W.M, Lodge Loretto Centenary No. l373.

G. L. of Scotland Bi-Centenary

Bro. Duncan R. Matheson P.M. was appointed by the Lodge as a Steward in connection with the celebration of the Bi-Centenary of the Grand Lodge of Scotland.

Honorary Membership

During the Session 1935 Honorary Membership was conferred upon Bro. Ian A. Johnston-Gilbert, R.W.M. and Bro. Robert W. Miller, both of the Sponsor Lodge, Lodge of Edinburgh (Mary's Chapel) No. 1.  

Bro. Miller was the Master Builder of the new College at Colinton Road. In December 1935 Bro. William S. Malloch was elected to the high position of Substitute Grand Master. On his retiral from Office as Tyler, Bro. William Anderson was obligated as an Honorary Member as a reward for his services faithfully rendered to the Lodge since its Erection.

Lodge Benevolence

On the 8th October, 1936, a letter was issued to each member of  the Lodge by the R.W.M. Bro. Leslie R. Grant, regarding the proposed direction of Lodge Benevolence quote:-

“At the November Meeting of the Watsonian Lodge I intend to bring up a matter which I think will appeal to every member of the Lodge, viz. how we can best exercise our principle of benevolence in connection with the old School. In an endeavour to ascertain informally how best we might formulate a scheme, your Almoner, Bro. W. Burns and I paid a visit to the Headmaster last July and obtained some useful information. It would seem that the sphere where we might most usefully employ an Education Fund, is in assisting boys who have just left school and whose parents have fallen on evil times. This would not interfere or overlap with either the Watsonian Club nor the funds available from the Merchant Company for assisting such parent or parents. Mr. Robertson (Headmaster) informed us that he occasionally has cases of boys who show marked ability or learning towards a certain career, but where perhaps through the death of the father there is not sufficient money to send the boy to the University or to pay for his apprenticeship. Please understand this is not an appeal for funds, but now that our Lodge is established on a sound basis with full equipment and the calls in connection with the Bi-Centenary fund have been met, I am most anxious that a small committee of the Lodge should be formed to investigate on what lines we can best put into practise our most cherished principle.

I intend to move,  therefore, that such a committee be formed to ascertain the feeling of the Brethren of the Lodge to investigate the whole question, and thereafter to report back to the Lodge. I am writing this letter to all Brethren of the Lodge with the knowledge and with full support of your General Committee. 

Signed L. R. Grant.

Installation 1936

Bro. Leslie R. Grant vacated the Chair after serving two years as R.W.M. and

Bro. Francis C. Inglis was installed by Bro. J. D. Tod, P.M. (Prov. Gr. Master of Midlothian) as Installing Officer.

A Jewel was presented to Bro. W. D. Winchester, Lodge Secretary, on his retiral from Office and he was warmly thanked for his services to the Lodge. 

Honorary Membership

In March, 1937  Honorary Membership was conferred upon Bro. C. C. Learmonth and Bro. John L. Tod. R.W.M. of Lodge Dalkeith Kilwinning No. 10.

Installation 1937   Lodge Standard Presented.

After the R.W.M. had opened his Lodge at the Regular Meeting held on the 9th December, 1937, the Inner Guard reported that at the door of the Lodge was the Standard of the Watsonian Lodge.  

Bro. Francis C. Inglis R.W.M. instructed the Bro. Director of Ceremonies and the two Deacons to receive the Standard.  

The Standard was dedicated to the Glory of God and the Service of the Watsonian Lodge by Bro. the Rev. Sturrock Clarke, Grand Chaplain.

The R.W.M. said he received with pleasure this emblem of Unity, Service and Loyalty and that the brethren of the Lodge owed the possession of this Standard to George Watson's Ladies College.   The Headmistress Miss Robertson not only sanctioned that the work be done by pupils of the Art Class , but gifted the silks and satins required for it, and Miss Hodges the Art Mistress instructed and guided the pupils, who, with their own hands produced this masterpiece.

Bro. Jas. Johnston helped the R.W.M. with the design and Bro. Douglas Radford, R.W.M.-elect, defrayed the cost of mounting, backing and  binding the panel.

A suitable excerpt of this minute was forwarded to Miss Robertson and Miss Hodges. After this Ceremony Bro. Douglas Radford was installed as R.W.M.

Honorary Membership

Honorary Membership and Jewel were conferred on :

Bro. the Right Hon. Viscount Traprain, Grand Master Depute and Bro. James S. M, Grieve, Grand Director of Ceremonies, at the Regular Meeting held on 17th March, 1938.

Passing of Bro. W.S. Malloch.

At the Regular Meeting held on 17th March, 1938 intimation was made that Worshipful Brother William S. Malloch, a Founder Member of the Watsonian Lodge, Past Substitute Grand Master and Past Provincial Grand Master of Midlothian had been called to Grand Lodge above on his way to God's House on a Sunday morning.

Bro. Malloch's epitaph can best be expressed thus:.-

"He was a true man and a most worthy Brother of the Craft.

He was held in great esteem throughout the Metropolitan area and in the Province of Midlothian. His personality had a charm which was most attractive and his popular designation as "Willie" Malloch was a proof of the deep affection with which he was held by those who knew him".

Presentation

At the Regular Meeting held on 17th November, 1938, the R.W.M. Bro. Douglas L. G. Radford received a deputation from the Lodge of Edinburgh (Mary's Chapel) No. I  headed by Bro. F. W. McCubbing, R.W.M. After receiving a Warm Welcome to the Watsonian Lodge, Bro. McCubbing said the deputation had not arrived empty handed but had brought with them three Tracing Boards, which he presented to the Watsonian Lodge from Mary's Chapel with the promise that should the Watsonian Lodge at any time become dormant then the Tracing Boards would be returned to Mary's Chapel.

Bro. McCubbing stated that this promise was made to show that Mary's Chapel were not giving away something they did not want and he hoped the Watsonian Lodge should never have occasion to return them.   The R.W.M. in expressing the thanks of the Lodge said it was a very kindly thought that prompted the oldest Lodge to make this gift to the youngest Lodge.

Installation 1938

At the Regular Meeting held on 8th December, 1938, Bro. W. B. Roberton was installed in the Chair of King Solomon by Bro. J. H. Hayhoe, R.W.. Installing Master.

16th March, 1939.

Due to a misunderstanding the Regular Meeting of the Lodge for 16th March, 1939, could not be held in the School at Colinton Road but by  Grand Lodge Dispensation the Meeting was held in the Lodge of Canongate Kilwinning No. 2 at 8 o'clock eventide. Very fittingly Honorary Membership had been offered to Bro. Wm. H. Roberton, Master Mason of Lodge Canongate Kilwinning No. 2 and father of Bro. W. B. Roberton R.W.M. of the Watsonian Lodge, and it was conferred upon him in the Lodge room of his Mother Lodge. No. 2 was also the Mother Lodge of R.W.M. Bro. W. B. Roberton and he expressed the pleasure it gave him to work a degree in such historic surroundings. Bro. Martin Hobkirk, Grand Organist, officiated at the old Organ in the Chapel.

 20th April, 1939.

Honorary Membership

At a Regular Meeting held on 20th April, 1939, Bro. W. B. Roberton R.W.M. expressed his pleasure in conferring honorary membership and Jewel upon Bro. J. W. McNaughton, Architect, Lodge of Edinburgh (Mary's Chapel) No. 1 for the help and assistance he had given the Watsonian Lodge on the Tracing Boards.

September 15th, 1939.

A General Committee Meeting was held on the 15th September, 1939. War had been declared twelve days earlier and Bro. Secy. read a letter from Grand Lodge dated 7th September, 1939 regarding the holding of Lodge Meetings during War-time.   The Merchant Company did not wish any of the School premises used when lighting was necessary.

5th October, 1939

At a Meeting of the General Committee held on the 5th October, 1939,  the Secretary read a letter from Lodge Roman Eagle No, 160 expressing their willingness to accommodate the Watsonian Lodge and the Lodge furniture at a charge of £1. 15. -. per week.

19th October, 1939

Permission having been given in a letter from Grand Lodge to hold Meetings within the Lodge room of Lodge Roman Eagle No. 160 during present conditions and pending further instructions a Regular Meeting was held on the 19th October, 1939.

December, 1939

Bro. William Frederick George Radford installed R.W.M. within the Lodge room of Lodge Roman Eagle No, 160, The Installation Dinner followed within the Lodge premises.

December, 1940

In December, 1940 Bro. W. F. G. Radford installed for a second term as R.W.M.

Bro. Douglas L. G. Radford

Bro. Douglas L. G. Radford P.M. the “Watsonian' Lodge appointed Prov. Grand Master of                 Kincardneshire.

At a Meeting of the General Committee held on 12th November,1941 discussion took place as to the adviseability of continuing Meetings during 1942.   Whilst business and Civil Defence duties made attendance at Meetings difficult it was suggested an appeal be circulated to the brethren requesting their support to the Qffice-Bearers.  

Installation 1941

At the Regular Meeting held on the l1th December, 1941, Bro. W. F. G. Radford installed R.W.M. for a third term. At this Meeting honorary membership was conferred upon Bro. Leonard Melrose, Grand Treasurer.

15th June, 1942.   Mark Degree

A Mark Lodge had been arranged for this Meeting but due to circumstances beyond the control of the Lodge the Degree could not be worked.

Bro. Duncan R. Matheson P.M. regaled the brethren with reminiscenses of his experience of Freemasonry in India. Bro. Douglas Radford commented on the fact that in the last three weeks over thirty Lodges under the Scottish Constitution in the Pacific had disappeared.

15th October, 1942

A Circular letter from Grand Lodge in connection with the War distress and Relief Funds was read. The R.W.M. Bro. W. F. G. Radford, expressed appreciation at the response shown by the brethren towards the Fund by making the handsome donation of £40. -. -.

6th November, 1942

The R.W.M. intimated that Bro. Douglas L. G. Radford has been elected Junior Grand Warden of Grand Iodge and Bro. John D. Tod P.M. had been promoted from Grand Marshal to Grand Director of Ceremonies.

 10th December, 1942

Bro. Dr. W. F. G. Radford R.W.M. retired.

Bro. Dr. Douglas L. G. Radford P.M. acted as R.W. Installing Officer and installed Bro. W. Fergus Harris Jr. in the Chair of King Solomon in the presence of a deputation from Grand Lodge as follows:

The Rt. Hon. Viscount Traprain, Imm. Past Gr. Master.

Bro. Dr King Gillies Gr. Secy.

Bro. Leonard Melrose Gr. Treasurer, and Bro. John Barclay Gr. Lodge Officer.

Bro. Duncan R. Matheson P.M. mentioned the fact that Bro. W. Fergus Harris Jr. had  the honour of creating a precedent in the annals of the Lodge by being the first Initiate of the Watsonian Lodge to occupy the Chair of King Solomon. The brethren adjourned to the Refectory for supper. The customary Masonic Toasts were duly honoured : the Toast of the Lodge and the R.W. Master being proposed by Bro. W. Fergus Harris, Sr. J.P., P.M. of Lodge Trafalgar No. 223.

18th March, 1943

Intimation was made of the appointment of Bro. Douglas L. G. Radford P.M. of the Lodge of Edinburgh ( Mary's Chapel ) No. 1, P.M. of the Watsonian Lodge and R.W. Jr. Gr. Warden as Chairman of the Metropolitan District Committee.

16th December, 1943.

Bro. W. Fergus Harris Jr. installed for a second term as R.W.M.  

Intimation made that Bro. Joseph MacNaughton a member of the Lodge had been appointed to Honorary Rank of Grand Bible Bearer.  

Report that the old Bible dated 1599 had been in a state of disrepair and renovation had been carried out by Bro. Lynch to whom a letter of thanks was forwarded by Bro. Secretary.

19th October, 1943.

Honorary Membership conferred upon Bro. The Earl of Galloway.

10th November, 1944

Bro. W. Fergus Harris Jr. R.W.M. admitted, obligated and  conferred Honorary Membership upon his father Bro. Wm. Fergus Harris P.M. of Lodge Trafalgar No. 223. This was the second occasion on which the father of a reigning master had been so honoured, the previous occasion being Bro. W. H. Roberton.

December, 1944.

Bro. J. Ian Wight installed as R.W. Master.

18th October, 1945

At the Regular Meeting held on 18th October, 1945, the R.W.M. Bro. Jas. Ian Wight intimated that since the last meeting of the Lodge there had been a cessation of hostilities in the theatres of War.

The Director of Ceremonies presented four brethren and the R.W.M. gave them a hearty "Welcome Home".   Offering a prayer of Thanksgiving the R.W. Master rejoiced that no member of the Watsonian Lodge had been called upon to make the supreme sacrifice and one Brother who had been a Prisoner of War had been safely returned to us.

15th November, 1945

Bro. The Earl of Galloway, Honorary Member of the Watsonian Lodge elected Grand Master Mason of Scotland, Bro. Douglas L.G. Radford P.M. elected Wor. Sr. Grand Warden.

1st December, 1945

A Deputation by Bro. J. Ian Wight R.W.M. worked a Third Degree in Lodge Dunearn No. 100 Burntisland. This was the first occasion on which the Watsonian Lodge had worked a Degree in another Lodge.

13th December, 1945

Regular Meeting and Installation held in George Watson's Boys' College, Colinton Road, and Bro. Jas. Ian Wight installed R.W. Master for a second term,

17th January, 1946

At the Regular Meeting held on 17th January, 1946 the statement of accounts submitted by Bro. Treasurer showed an excess of Income over Expenditure for the year of £10.17.8d. which was considered very satisfactory.

21st February, 1946

At a Regular Meeting held on this date the R.W.M. Bro. Jas. Ian Wight conferred Honorary Membership upon Bro. Jas. Young Coates and Bro. Herbert Brown, Master Masons of Lodge Roman Eagle No. 160 in appreciation of their great services to the Watsonian Lodge during the War Years. 

21st March, 1946

At a Regular Meeting held on 21st March, 1946,  the R.W.M. conferred Honorary Membership upon Bro. Nicholas J. Kerr.

The R.W.M. addressing Bro. Kerr thanked him for his invaluable services in looking after the Watsonian Lodge Records during the difficult days of the War when so many Watsonian brethren had been called to the Colours.

12th December, 1946

At the Installation Meeting on 12th December, 1946, Bro. Bonar Law    was installed in the Chair of King Solomon by Bro. Douglas L. G. Radford P.M., R.W. Installing Officer assisted by Bro. the Earl of Balfour the most Worshipful Past Grand Master Mason.

February, 1947

At a Regular Meeting held on 20th February, 1947, it was agreed in view of the considerable increase in cost of heating and printing particularly, to raise the Annual contribution to £1. -. --.

Special Benevolent Fund

A sum of £60 was held in a Trust A/c for the purpose of setting up a special Lodge Benevolent Fund for Educational purposes.   It has been felt that the purpose for which the Fund was created was now covered by the Watsonian War Relief and Benevolent Fund and it was suggested the sum at credit of the A/c should be handed over to the Watsonian War Relief and Benevolent Fund as a donation from the brethren of the Lodge. Moved and seconded.

11th December, 1947

At the Installation Meeting held on the 11th December, 1947 Bro. Jas. B. Alexander Jr. was installed in the Chair of King Solomon.

April, 1948.

A first contribution of £50 having already been forwarded to the Scottish Masonic Benevolent Centenary Fund, a second contribution of £20 was now forwarded making a total of £70 from the Watsonian Lodge.

4th November, 1948

At the close of the Special Meeting held on the 4th November, 1948, the brethren adjourned to the School Dining Hall where a special Complimentary Dinner was given to Bro. Dr. Douglas L. G. Radford P.M. Grand Master Substitute in recognition of his great services to Freemasonry and the honour which he had brought to the Watsonian Lodge.   The Chair was taken by Bro. Jas. B. Alexander Jr. who proposed the Toast of "Our Guest" Bro. Dr. Douglas L. G. Radford. When Bro. Dr. Radford rose to reply he received a great ovation from the brethren assembled. Dr. Radford spoke in characteristic vein of his work and his experiences in the service of the Grand Lodge of Scotland.

December, 1948.

At the Installation Meeting on the 9th December, 1948, Bro. Stephen B. Roberton, brother of Bro. Wm. B. Roberton P.M. was installed in the Chair of King Solomon. Bro. Wm. B. Roberton acted as R.W. Installing Master.

January, 1949

At a Regular Meeting held on 20th January, 1949, a motion was passed to alter the Lodge Special Bye-Laws - Law IV Fees : Item 4 to read: -

Annual contributions by each Master Mason within 25 miles of Edinburgh G.P.O, £1. -. -,resident outwith 25 miles of Edinburgh G.P.O. 5/-.

February, 1949.

At a Regular Meeting held on 17th February, 1949, Honorary Membership was conferred upon Bro. Harvey M. Jamieson, Master Mason of the Lodge of Holyrood House ( St. Luke) No. 44 and Secretary to the Merchant Company of Edinburgh. 

8th December, 1949.

At the installation Meeting held on the 8th December, 1949, Bro. Henry Forbes Murphy was installed in the Chair of King Solomon. Bro. Duncan R. Matheson acted as R.W. Installing Master.

Honorary Membership was conferred upon Bro. The Right Hon. Lord Saltoun M.C., R.W. Past Grand Master Mason, R.W. Master of the Lodge of Edinburgh (Mary' s Chapel ) No. 1

December, 1950.

At the Installation Meeting held on the 14th December, 1950, Bro. Maurice G. Kidd was installed in the Chair of King Solomon.

Bro. Dr. Douglas L. G. Radford P.M. Past Depute Grand Master, acted as R.W. Installing Officer assisted by Bro. the Earl of Eglinton and Winton. It was noted that this was the first occasion that the reigning Masters of No. 1 and 2 had met in this Lodge,  and they signed the R.W.M.'s Certificate of Installation.

After the Installation Bro. Wm. Roberton P.M., on behalf of the Past Masters of the Watsonian Lodge had the pleasure of presenting an album containing photographs of all the Past Masters.   The R.W. Master accepted the album for safe keeping in the Archives of the Lodge.

18th November, 1951.

At a Regular Meeting held on the 18th November, 1951,  Bro. Maurice G. Kidd, R.W.M. read the following obituary notice: - 

"We have sustained the loss of one of our most distinguished brethren in the passing to Grand Lodge above of one of the brightest characters in the Annals of Scottish Freemasonry in the person of our own beloved and esteemed Past Master Bro. Douglas L. G. Radford. 

Although enjoying indifferent health for some considerable time, he devoted much if not all of his leisure in the furtherance of the good of the Craft. In the course of his Masonic duties he travelled far and wide.

He received many Masonic honours and must have been an Honorary Member of many Masonic Lodges. It falls to few men to be a Past Master of more than one Lodge. Bro. Radford was R.W. Master of the Lodge of Edinburgh (Mary's Chapel) No. 1 as far back as 1923 and we felt greatly honoured when he accepted the Chair of the Watsonian Lodge in December, 1937.    Bro. Radford was elected Grand Inner Guard in Grand Lodge in 1931, and having passed through the various offices he was commissioned as Grand Master Depute in November, 1949.   Bro. Radford was appointed Prov. Grand Master of Kincardineshire in 1941. Such honours as came his way he accepted with modesty. His one idea was service to the Craft and this young Lodge has much to remember him by.  One of the foremost ritualists of our time, he had made a close study of the inner meaning and history of the Craft and it was an education to listen to his reasoning of many points of controversial practice in the numerous rituals that were met with from time to time. But it is for his wise counsel, his straight but ever kindly words of criticism and his modest but nevertheless forceful personality that we shall miss him most of all. His character marked him as a worthy brother, kind and charitable in word and deed. His example will remain with us a cherished possession. Let us therefore re-dedicate ourselves at this time to the furtherance of the good of the Craft and our own Lodge in particular. That, I am sure is what he would have wished".

December, 1951.

At the Installation Meeting held on the 13th December, 1951, Bro. Sydney H.  Morton was installed in the Chair of King Solomon, Bro. Leslie R. Grant P.M. acted as R.W. Installing Master assisted by Bro. Dr. Alex. F. Buchan, Grand Secretary,

February, 1952.

Bro. Lt. Col. A. G. Campbell was elected to Grand Committee. 

20th March, 1952.

The 21st Anniversary of the Watsonian Lodge was celebrated at the Regular Meeting held on 20th March, 1952. The first Minute of the Lodge was read by Bro. Secy. after which Bro. the Rev. Canon G. K. Sturrock Clarke, Past Grand Chaplain gave an inspiring call to re-dedication. He recalled the names of those who were instrumental in the founding of the Watsonian Lodge and especially the narne of Bro. William S. Malloch, Past Prov. Grand Master of Midlothian.

November, 1952.

At the Regular Meeting held on 20th November, 1952, Honorary Membership was conferred upon Bro. Captain John Christie Stewart of Murdostoun, C.B.E.,  D.L.,  R.W. Past Grand Master Mason.

December, 1952.

At the Installation Meeting held on the 11th December, 1952,  Bro. Alexander Bain Young was installed in the Chair of King Solomon.

Bro. J. Ian Wight P.M. acted as R.W. Installing Master.

After the Installation Honorary Membership was conferred upon Bro. Major R.H.F. Moncrieff.

15th January, 1953.

At a Regular Meeting held on the 15th January, 1953, the question of Life Membership was brought up and referred back to the next Meeting of the General Committee.

Intimation was given of the passing to Grand Lodge above of Bro. Dr. J. Hamilton Birrell, an Honorary Member of our Lodge in which he had shown much interest since its inception.

27th January, 1953.

At a Meeting of the General Committee held on 27th January, 1953, the members gave very full consideration to the suggestion to introduce Life Membership and the unanimous decision of the Committee was that they could not recommend its introduction.

19th November, 1953.

Bro. the Rt. Hon. Lord Macdonald of Sleat, Depute Grand Master Mason of Scotland received Honorary Membership on this date.

10th December, 1953.

Bro. Lt. Col. A. G. Campbell installed as R.W. Master.

20th October, 1954.

Bro. The Rt. Hon. The Earl of Eglinton & Winton D.L., T.D., received Honorary Membership on this date.

9th December, 1954.

Installation Meeting. Bro. George E. Radford installed as R.W. Master.

January, 1955.

Honorary Membership of Lodge St. Clair No. 349 conferred upon Bro. Lt. Col. A. G. Campbell, P.M.

March, 1955.

Bro. S. B. Roberton, P.M.. presented to the Lodge a Masonic apron (which belonged to his grandfather) of Lodge St. John Jedburgh No. 104.

October, 1955.

Honorary Membership of the Lodge conferred upon Bro. Dr. Alex. Buchan, Grand Secretary. The honorary member's jewel presented to Bro. Buchan  was the one presented to the late Bro. Dr. King Gillies, a former Grand Secretary.

November, 1955.

Bro. Lt. Col. A. G. Campbell, P.M., appointed as representative to the Grand Lodge of Cuba near the Grand Lodge of Scotland.

December, 1955.

Bro. George E. Radford reinstalled as R.W.M, by Bro. Lord Bruce R.W. Junior Grand Warden assisted by Bro. Dr. Alex. Buchan,  Grand Secretary.

Bro. George follows the precedent of his famous blood brothers, Bro. Bill Radford and the late Bro. Douglas Radford, of occupying the chair for two years.

February, 1956.

Church service in Morningside High Church to celebrate  the Silver Jubilee (1931 - 1956) of the Watsonian Lodge. The Service was conducted by Bro, the Rev. T. B. Stewart Thomson, M.C., T.D., D.D., Chaplain to the Queen, Past Senior Grand Chaplain assisted by Bro. the Rev. Andrew J. Buchan, M.A. V. Worshipful Junior Grand Chaplain. The attendance numbered 336. The date of the service coincided with the actual date of the granting of the Charter to the Lodge in 1931.

March, 1956.

Silver Jubilee of the Lodge celebrated. Representatives of 28 Lodges in the Metropolitan District attended Grand Lodge represented by

Bro. Thos. Pitcairn, R.W. Substitute Grand Master, R.W. Prov. Grand Master of    Stirlingshire,

Bro. Lord Bruce. R.W. Junior Grand Warden,

Bro, the Rev. T. B. Stewart Thomson, M.C. T.D., D.D., Past Senior Grand Chaplain.

Bro. H. V. De Lorey represented the Metropolitan District Committee.

Bro. Stewart Thomson, Past Senior Grand Chaplain gave an inspiring call to Re-dedication. It was very fitting that Bro. Stewart Thomson should have been invited to the Re-dedication ceremony as he gave the oration at the Consecration of the Lodge in Archibald Place in 1931.

December, 1956.

Bro. Duncan M. Lowe installed as R.W.M. by Bro. Leslie R. Grant, P.M. assisted by a board of installed masters numbering 17.

January, 1957.

R. W. B. Roberton, P.M., first Treasurer to the Lodge handed over to the Treasurer a file containing interesting information regarding the original provision of furnishings and regalia for the Lodge.

February, 1957.

Bro. Maurice G. Kidd, P.M. elected to Grand Committee. Bro. Maurice was the first initiate of the Lodge to be so honoured.

October, 1957.

Bro. Leslie R. Grant, P.M. gave an appreciation of Bro. John D. Tod, the First R.W.M. of the Lodge who had been called to Grand Lodge above.

November, 1957.

Bro. Leslie R. Grant, P.M. elected President of the Watsonian Club.

December, 1957.

Bro. Duncan M. Love re-installed as R.W.M. by Bro. A. B. Young assisted by Bro. Maurice G. Kidd, P.M.

January, 1958.

Lodge revised bye-laws approved by Grand Lodge.

March, 1958.

Bro. Duncan R. Matheson, P.M. called to Grand Lodge above.

Appreciation given by Bro. Maurice G. Kidd, P.M.

November, 1958.

Bro. Ian Johnson-Gilbert, Past Master of Lodge of Edinburgh (Mary's Chapel) No. 1 an honorary member of the Watsonian Lodge and Lord Provost of Edinburgh visited the Lodge.

December, 1958.

Bro. Eric R. L. Fitzpayne (affiliate) installed as R.W.M. of Lodge Pollok   Pollockshields No. 772.

Bro. Gabriel Jerdan installed as R.W.M. of Lodge Glasgow Kilwinning No. 4.

The Watsonian Lodge No. 1375

                               Names of Donors and Gifts presented to the Lodge.

Bro. J. D. Tod                                                                        R.W.M.’s Chair & Pedestal               

Bro. T. Sawers                                                                     I.P.M. Chair

Bro. Leslie R. Grant)

Bro. W. Thyne Jr.   )                                                                             D.M.’s Chair

Bro. J. McKinnell                                                                  S.M.’s Chair

Bro. M. L. Gibbs                                                                   Visitors Chair

Bro. Duncan R. Matheson                                                                 S.W.’s Chair

Bro. J. M. Johnston )

Bro. J. S. Johnston )                                                                            J W.'s Chair

 

Bro. W. S. Malloch                                                                               S.W.'s Pedestal

 

Bro. James Luke                                                                                 J.W.'s Pedestal

 

Bro. James Luke                                                                                 Altar

 

Bro. W. D. Winchester                                                                        R.W.M.'s Column

Bro. F. A. C. Inglis                                                                                S.W.'s Column

Bro. J. B. Alexander Jr.                                                        J.W.'s Column

Bro. C. R. Gerard                                                                                 Carpet

Bro. W. B. Roberton                                                                            Batons

George Watson's Ladies College                                   Standard with Crest & Stand

Bro. Robert W. Millar                                                              *           Bible & Maroon Cushion

Bro. Duncan M. Lowe P.M. 1253                                      Tyler's Sword

Bro. Dr. W.F.G. Radford                                                      Picture of Scott & Burns

Bro. Leonard Melrose, Grand Treasurer                        Almoner's Jewel

Bro.W. Fergus Harris Jr.)

Bro. Maurice G. Kidd    )                                                      3rd Degree Clock

Bro. Duncan R. Matheson                                                                 Mark Jewel

Bro. R. Maxwell Young                                                                        3 Mark Stones

Bro. Dr. W. F. G. Radford                                                    1 Mark Axe

By the Pastmasters of the                                                                 Album of Photographs

Watsonian Lodge                                                                                of Pastmasters

The Lodge of Edinburgh                                                    Director of Ceremonies Baton

Mary's Chapel No. 1                                                                           (made from wood of the old                                                                                                          School at Archibald Place)

The Lodge of Edinburgh

Mary's Chapel No. 1                                                              **           3 Tracing Boards

Bro. J. B. Alexander Jr.                                                        Easel for Tracing Boards

Bro. Ian Carnegie                                                                                Sword for Inner Guard

Bro. Douglas L. G. Radford                                                               1 Stone Mallet

Bro. W.F.G. Radford    )

Bro. George E. Radford }                                                   19 Ashtrays

Bro. Wm. Roberton                                                                             Bible Marker

Bro . R. E. Douglas

Q.E.R. Lodge (The Royal Scots 1253)                                            Taper Holder 

*21st July, 1935.    Bro. R. W. Miller, Mary's Chapel No. 1 presented to the Lodge a "Breeches Bible" printed in 1599 with an illuminated address thereon to the effect it was presented by the Master Builder of George Watson’s College.

 ** 17th November, 1938, 3 Tracing Boards were presented to the Watsonian Lodge by a Deputation from the Lodge of Edinburgh (Mary’s Chapel) No. 1 (headed by Bro. F.W. McCubbing, R.W.M.), and extracted a promise that should the Watsonian Lodge at any time become dormant then the Tracing Boards would be returned to Mary’s Chapel. 

                                       Historic Point

Part 2

HISTORY OF ‘THE WATSONIAN LODGE No.1375’

 

THE POST WAR YEARS

 

Membership of the Lodge grew after the cessation of hostilities, with many members continuing friendships made, not only at school but in the armed forces.

The Lodge was set up in Room 64 (?) and continued there until The Blair Library expanded, when it was moved to the Vth Year Common Room in the out shot to the Senior Quad. This did not prove a satisfactory venue and for some years from 1975 until the early eighties, degrees were worked at the back of the hall under the balcony. With the arrival of the girls from George Square, more and more pressure was put upon available space, so the Lodge moved to the Upper Primary, where a very good operational temple was created in the theatre/music room area with visitors sitting on the (then) raised area. Continuing pressure forced yet another move, in October 1994 to the Pavilion at Myreside. This was a popular venue, as club members became aware of the existence of The Lodge and 1375 members were able to mix with them after the meetings. Unfortunately, the franchising of the catering facilities meant that the Lodge could not always meet in a secure area and the decision was taken to rent premises more suited for Masonic purposes. Thus came about the move to the Dunedin Masonic Hall in Morningside Drive in October 1998, which heralded the discussions regarding a merger.

During the period from 1946 until the mid sixties, the Lodge continued to be well attended. It became customary for Depute Grand Masters to be given honorary membership and, in return, several Watsonians attained Grand Rank. Notable among these were Duncan Lowe, who became Grand Almoner and A.B. (Sandy) Young, who became Grand Director of ceremonies.

From the mid sixties, as was happening all too frequently, membership of Lodges throughout Scotland started to drop off. The Lodge attracted fewer and fewer members until, in 1980, the Brethren considered an application from a non-Watsonian. Consternation was expressed from several Past Masters and a special meeting was convened on 29th May 1980 to debate this turn of events. Bros. Charles Wilson and Lindsay Walls proposed the cessation of the restrictions which allowed membership exclusively for Watsonians and members of staff, especially in light of the fact that the Lodge was having extreme difficulty in attracting new members. After a debate lasting well over an hour, a vote was taken to open the membership of to retain the status quo. Status quo won by 22 votes to 2. Several Past Masters, who had not been seen in the Lodge for many years, packed their bags and were never seen again.

On 5th February 1981 a Ceremony of Rededication, conducted by Brother Sir James W Mackay, Grand Master Mason took place at Colinton Road. Among the Grand Lodge deputation were the following Watsonians: Bro. Stuart Falconer, Grand Secretary, Bro. Duncan M Lowe, Grand Almoner and Bros. Gabriel Jerdan and Dr. W R C Andrew Members of Grand Committee. It was with great regret that Bro. Sandy Young had to tender his apologies for absence that night. Bro. Sandy had recently been diagnosed as suffering from cancer and was too unwell to attend.

It was not until 1991 when an application for membership was received from Lt. Col. R .J. S. Smith, who was a former pupil of Stewarts-Melville, that the entire debate of opening up the Lodge re-opened. By that time The Watsonian Club had introduced Family Membership and it was felt that, to keep The Lodge viable, it too had to be opened. Several brethren, either Watsonians or with Merchant Company connections, affiliated and The Lodge enjoyed a new lease of life.

However, the move to Morningside Drive enabled the final direct chapter of the Watsonian Lodge to be enacted. 1375 had several brethren moving through the offices and Lodge Dunedin No.1316 had a gap between recent members and those attaining the chair. Past Masters Lindsay Walls (1375) and Allan Jackson (1316) who had been firm friends for over twenty-five years looked at the broader picture and agreed that a merger of the two Lodges would enable those gaps to be filled, would give an enhanced membership in a joint Lodge and would cement a relationship between the Lodges, which had lasted for seventy years. They approached Bro. Robert Tait, then Provincial Grand Master of The Provincial Grand Lodge of Edinburgh, who endorsed the proposals and set in motion the chain of events which led to the merger of the two Lodges on 8th November 2002 as Lodge Dunedin Caritas No.1316.

It is fitting that the last initiate into Freemasonry in 1375 was Bro. Andy Macrae, a teacher at Watsons. The final meeting of 1375 was held at Morningside Drive on 25th October 2003, when Bro. Andy was raised to the 3rd Degree. It was well attended by over eighty brethren from the Provinces of Edinburgh, Midlothian and further afield.

The premises at Morningside Drive are owned by a consortium of six Lodges, all of whom have come together over a number of years. All of them brought furnishings with them but it was not until the merger that the piece de resistance took place. The beautiful Watsonian furniture, which had been stored in the school, was brought to Morningside Drive. There it was lovingly restored and it was agreed that all Lodges using the premises would use it in future.

2006 sees the 75th anniversary of the founding of The Watsonian Lodge. To mark the occasion, Past Master Bro. Lindsay Walls has gone into the Chair. It is proposed to hold a special meeting in April, the 75th anniversary of the first Regular Meeting of 1375, when a degree was worked.

It is hoped that Lodge Dunedin Caritas will carry on the true spirit of Freemasonry and that Watsonians wishing to join the ancient and honorable craft will consider it their natural point of entry.

JLW

December 2005. 

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