Enderby Lodge No. 40
In December, 1904, a handful of worthy Brethren from Lambley’s Landing, who were members of Spallumcheen Lodge No. 13, in Armstrong, determined that their settlement (later named Enderby) was ready to support a Masonic Lodge of its own. In early 1905 an application was completed and presented to the Grand Master, Most Worshipful Brother William J. Bowser, who was in the area on a visit, asking for dispensation to establish a Lodge the community.
The Grand Master was satisfied with the arrangements made, and on January 16, 1905, dispensation was granted. The Lodge was instituted on February 16, 1905. The charter was ordered by Grand Lodge on June 22, 1905, and Enderby Lodge No. 40 was duly constituted by the District Deputy Grand Master (D.D.G.M.) on August 19, 1906. Like its mother Lodge in Spallumcheen, Enderby Lodge adopted the Canadian ritual. The Brethren were installed by Right Worshipful Brother C.J. Becker, D.D.G.M. of District #3, who was a member of Spallumcheen Lodge. On June 6th, 1905, there were nineteen members in Enderby Lodge No. 40. The cost to join the lodge in 1905 was ten dollars.
Enderby Lodge was one of many “Moon Lodges” in B.C., which met on or after the full moon each month, to allow for some visibility during travel. This continued through 1905 and 1906, when, by authority of Grand Lodge, meetings were changed to the third Wednesday of the month. As with most lodges in the jurisdiction, the Lodge is “in darkness” in July and August, when there are no meetings.
In 1907 the Freemasons of Enderby built their own hall in the Bell Block (which is where the local drug store is now), at the corner of Cliff Ave. and Belvedere St. That same year, tragedy struck, as the building burned to the ground, with the loss of everything inside. The Brethren then applied to Bro. Metcalfe to hold their meetings in the back of his store, which he had been renting out to other organizations. Rent was set at one dollar per month. The Lodge carried on for many years gaining 1 or 2 members a year, and growing nicely.
The 1st World War in 1914 saw some members sign up and go overseas, which lowered the membership, some of our Brethren never returned. Then in the early 1920’s Okanagan Sawmill closed down, and more of the Brethren left the area. The remaining members pulled together and worked hard to keep the Lodge operating with some success. In 1922 the Lodge moved to the upstairs of the Polson Mercantile Building, located between the CPR tracks and the Shuswap River. They occupied the top floor of this building for twenty-seven years.
On August 1st, 1928, by dispensation of Grand Lodge, the bylaws were changed and District #3 became known as the Okanagan-Revelstoke District #9 and remains the same today.
At the writing of this history, in 2005, Enderby Lodge had one Honourary Member, Very Worshipful Brother Joe Hawrys who had been a member of this lodge for all of his 60 years of Masonry. He held office for twenty-nine years. At that time, two of our Brethren had received 50 Year Awards, Very Worshipful Bro. Joseph Ludwig and Right Worshipful Bro. Gerald Raboch.
Enderby Lodge at one time held their installation and investiture of officers at the annual meeting in December, but this was changed a few times and is now held in April of every year.
The Second World War in 1939 saw our Brethren again go to war, lowering the membership and once more there were members who did not return. With this development, the Lodge struggled, as did many Lodges in B.C. Nine Brethren from our Lodge are listed on the Roll of Honour for the period 1914 to 1918. Twenty-seven Brethren are added the Roll of Honour for the 2nd World War, Korea, and for service during peace time.
In March of 1950 land was purchased and in 1950-51 the present Masonic Hall was built through the join efforts of the Independent Order of Oddfellows (I.O.O.F.) and the Freemasons of Enderby. The Fraternal Hall Society was formed in February 1952, and in 1954 the land was paid off and the deed received by the Fraternal Hall Society. The I.O.O.F. share of the building, and the property was purchased on July 8th, 1976, and is now owned by the Fraternal Hall Society.
Enderby Lodge boasts twenty-two past and present members as having served the greater jurisdiction of officers of this Grand Lodge, and other Grand Lodges in Canada. In 2005, Enderby Lodge celebrated the first 100 years of Masonry in our community, and we look forward to the next 100 years.