Perfection Lodge was instituted on the 26 day of June 1894 by M.W.Bro Dr.N.J. Lindsay. The population of Calgary at that time was about 3,000. After a period of almost fourteen months Perfection Lodge was constituted.
"A Special Joint Meeting of Bow River Lodge No 28 & Perfection Lodge No 60 A.F. & A.M. G.R.M. was held in the Masonic Temple Aug.7th 1895. The Lodge was opened @ 8.pm W.Bro.VanWart W.M. & Officers of Perfection Lodge in the Chairs.
The W.M. stated that the meeting was called to receive the M.W. the Grand Master Bro. C.N. Bell & constitute Perfection Lodge No 60.
At that time what would eventually become the province of Alberta was part of the North West Territories and the Lodge was Masonically under the jurisdiction of the Grand Lodge of Manitoba.
The charter members of Perfection Lodge No. 60, A.F.&A.M., G.R.M. were:
|I.S.G. Van Wart||James Ryan|
|R.N. Kirkpatrick||H.W.C. Myer|
|T.N. Christie||H. Symons|
|G.C. McGregor||Geo. Hillier|
|A.M. Grogan||T.F. Watson|
|F.F. Higgs||J.A. McKenzie|
|H.G. McKid||Hugh McClelland|
|Amos Rowe||Alexander McQueen|
The initiation fee was $40.00, and the annual dues were $3.00. The Work to be practiced was that known as "The Ancient York Rite."
The Proceeding for the Grand Lodge of Manitoba, 1896 contain the following report on Perfection Lodge:
This Lodge was duly constituted by the Most Worshipful The Grand Master, and I on that occasion installed the officers. I also visited the lodge officially October 15th 1895, when the Fellow Craft’s degree was conferred in a very impressive manner. The middle chamber Lecture was given by Bro. Higgs as well as I have ever heard it; altogether the officers are well skilled and do excellent degree work. The affairs of the Lodge are conducted in a business-like manner, and it has every prospect of becoming one of the strongest and best working Lodges in the West.
T.F. English, DDGM, District Number Nine.
From 1894 to 1899 lodge meetings were held in the Lodge Room of Bow River Lodge No.28 G.R.M.. These were located first just east of Second Street East on Eighth Avenue, and then at 138 8th Avenue S.E.. In 1899, 138 – 8th Avenue S.E. was known as the Barber Block, so named by Samuel Barber, the local manager of the Imperial Bank.
In 1899 both Perfection and Bow River Lodges moved their meeting place to new lodge rooms in the Victoria Block built by William Roper Hull, a rancher and local businessman.
In 1905 when the province of Alberta was formed, the Grand Lodge of Alberta was organized and Perfection Lodge received it’s present charter and official designation as "Perfection Lodge No. 9, A.F.&A.M. G.R.A.
In 1907, when membership had grown to 275, Perfection Lodge undertook the preparation of a Temple and Club Rooms in the Alexander block. Located on the northwest corner of 1st Street and 8th Avenue S.W., which is the present day location of the Bay department store on Stephen Avenue Mall.
Construction of the New Temple was commenced at a cost of $10,000.00 and it was ready for occupancy for its first meeting on February 25th, 1908. The Temple was formally dedicated on April 27th, 1909. It was also in 1909 that the lodge authorized an expenditure of $2,500.00 for the purchase of a pipe organ. This is the same pipe organ that is currently installed in the Blue Lodge room at Freemason’s Hall on 12th Avenue in Calgary.
1928: The Calgary Masonic Temple
In December 1928, the Lodge had to vacate the Temple in the Alexander Corner Block, which was immediately torn down to make way for the Hudson’s Bay Company’s extension. It was during this year that Perfection joined with Bow River, Calgary, Ashlar, Mount Lebanon, Zetland, Concord, and Renfrew Lodges to build the present Temple at 313, 12th Avenue South West. The new Temple was dedicated by M.W.Bro. Mitchell, Grand Master A.F.&A.M. G.R.A., on December 28, 1928.
The membership of the lodge increased at a very fast rate during it’s first 30 years. At the end of 1924 Perfection Lodge had 437 members. This increase in membership was due not only to new initiations but also by the affiliation of many brethren who found themselves settling in the Calgary area. That so many Masons would choose to affiliate with this lodge is seen as a tribute to the quality of work and fraternal spirit that the early members of Perfection Lodge portrayed.
1945 brought many bright lights to Perfection Lodge. Above all else the curtain finally closed on the "Theatre of War" in Europe. This only served to heighten the feelings at the end of a year that also saw Perfection Lodge celebrate its 50th Anniversary.
During out official celebrations on May 15th, 1945, M.W.Bro William Ireland, a Past Master of Perfection, occupied the high office of Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Alberta. An address by Bro. Rev. Dr. Frank Morley was delivered at the evening banquet to an audience of over 300. To culminate the proceedings Bro. Tony Grogan was presented with his 50 Year Jewel. Bro. Grogan was the last surviving Charter Member of Perfection Lodge. As a memento of the occasion the Lodge placed in its archives a copy of the Official programme autographed by:
‘Bro. Harry S. Truman (President of the United States of America), Mrs. Eleanor Roosevelt (widow of the late President, Bro. Franklin D. Roosevelt), Bro. William Lyon Mackenzie King Prime Minister of Canada, Bro. Viscount Bennet former Prime Minister, and the Grand Masters of all of The Grand Lodges in Canada, and other eminent Masons.’
At the 70th anniversary celebrations held in May 1965 W.Bro. H.J. Robbins presented the Lodge with the new Canadian Maple Leaf flag. Bro. George Pain presented the Lodge with the Portrait of Bro. Sir Winston Churchill, which still hangs in the reception room at the Calgary Freemason’s Hall. Historical reviews at this meeting were prepared and presented by W.Bro E. Wood and Bro. Herb Surplis.
1970 saw R.(Bob) F. Jones installed as the Worshipful Master of the Lodge. He then had the honour of leading the Lodge during it’s 75th Anniversary celebrations.
On May 19, 1970 the Lodge held a ceremony of Rededication and Thanksgiving conducted by V.W.Bro Rec, J.W. Roberts, Grand Chaplin. It was at this time that Perfection Lodge was presented with the set of gavels, which are still used today. A dinner was held at the Palliser Hotel with 118 members and visitors in attendance. Rt.W.Bro. L.J. Rosling prepared and delivered a resume of the Lodge activities for the past 75 years.
September 10th, 1971: Our Own Bro. Peter Lougheed is elected as the Premier of Alberta
1988: Calgary Hosts the 15th Winter Olympic Games
Members of Perfection Lodge did the Lodge proud with their Participation in the Olympic experience. Bro. Joe Chase at the age of 101 years ran in the cross-Canada Olympic Torch Relay. Bill Pratt is a name now recognized by all Calgarians. Our own Bro. Pratt was the President of OCO99 (Olympics Canada). Bro. Pratt along with Frank King, Chairman, were subsequently voted "Calgarians of the Year" for their great efforts in organizing and steering the "greatest Winter Olympic Games ever."
With our 100th anniversary fast approaching, in 1993 the Lodge organized a Centennial Celebration Committee Chaired by the then J.W., Bro. Jack Pidgeon. It was hoped that with all things unfolding as they should that Bro. Pidgeon would ultimately become the W.M. in 1995 and that by chairing the committee he would be better enabled to plan the events, which would be directly under his control. The Lodge on January 3rd, 1995 was excited and filled with pride as we Installed out first new W.M. in five years and began a full year of 100th anniversary celebrations. Our Lodge owes a great debt of gratitude to W.Bro. Pidgeon and his committee for their hard work in planning and organizing the events for that wonderful year.
After well over 100 years of building up and tearing down and building up again, Perfection Lodge No.9 continues to teach the lessons of Virtue, Morality and Brotherly love, as Masonry has done from its beginning and that we all hope will continue until time shall be no more.