Lodge History

History of St. Andrews No. 35 F. & A. M.

1879-1881 –
Dispensation. St. Johns Lodge was requested for sponsorship in forming a new Lodge. On November 10, 1879 M.W. Oliver P. Lacy, GM of the Territory of Washington, issued a dispensation for a lodge at Newcastle in King County. The first secretary, Nicholas H. Martin, is credited with giving the new lodge it’s name, St. Andrews. It appears that the name was taken from his mother lodge in Nova Scotia. In 1880 a Certificate of continuance of Dispensation was issued to St. Andrews. At the same time, permission was sought and obtained to move the place of communication from Newcastle to Renton, a town little more than 100 people.
On the 2nd of June, 1881 the Grand Lodge Committee recommended that the charter for St. Andrews Lodge No. 35 in Renton be granted. The recommendation was adopted.

Lodge meetings were established to be the 1st and 3rd Saturday of each month. The Brethren first met in a room above Lavern Barnett’s maternal grandfather’s saloon.

In October of the year, a fire destroyed all the records and paraphernalia of the lodge. The lodge then met in the I.O.O.F. Hall.
Pro. James Tonkin opened the first general store in Renton.

Sponsored a new lodge in Kent. (Verity 59)

Sponsored a new lodge in Black Diamond. (Diamond 83)

Property in Renton was purchased and articles of incorporation were established.

The Brethren voted to build a meeting hall.
The population of Renton was Approximately 400 persons. The membership grew to 45
Master Masons.

The Brethren, again sponsored a new lodge at Newcastle. (Tyee 115) Bro. Dr. A.I. Beach was Renton’s first Mayor. Bro. John Bevan was the town Treasurer.

A “blue” lantern was purchased to hang outside the hall on meeting nights.
A vote was passed to prohibit smoking while Lodge was at work and during banquets when ladies were present.

Once more the Brethren sponsored a new lodge in Riverton. (Delta 172) Construction on the new hall was begun.
Cornerstone laid for St. Andrews Lodge Hall on the 27th of June by MW Royal Amenzo Gove, Grand Master. Renton’s 4th Mayor, elected during the year, was Ben Ticknor, a Past Master of St. Andrews.
The population of Renton was 2,740 persons. The membership of the lodge was 86.
V.W. Talbott was Master in this year as well as being Superintendent of Public Schools.
Bylaws were amended to change stated meetings to the 1st and 3rd Friday of each month.
Bylaws were amended again, to return the stated meetings the 1st and 3rd Saturday. The Grand Master approved the bylaws change in 1917.
Bro. W. Tonkin is elected Mayor of Renton.

The population of Renton was 3,301. The membership of the lodge was 133.
Dues were revised to $6.00 per year. The fees for the degrees is $50.00.
W.B. Tonkin presented a motion to dissolve the Masonic Building Association and form a new committee that included the three principle officers of the lodge.
Deeds to lot 16 &17 (block 25) were donated to the lodge by Bros. E.T. Rees (Sec.) and P. Hanson (Treas.)
Bro. E.M. Smithers, Renton’s Post Master in 1873 to 1876, was reinstated into the lodge. Bro. Smithers filed the Renton Town Plat or 4 September, 1875. He was also a member of St. John’s Lodge No. 9.
Deeds to lot 26 (block 23) and Farm Plat #3 were presented to the lodge from the estate of deceased Bro. Eleazer P. Whitney.
The insurance for three years was $236. This was probably property insurance.
Bro. Ray Hansen was Master during this year. (Bro. Ray is still living as of this writing.)
The new Worshipful Master, W.B. Bertram Tachell, is also Renton’s undertaker and owner of the first motorized hearse.
Organist Bert D. Thomas eventually moved to Columbus Ohio and became President of college there. (Possibly Ohio State College) (Read a little about Brother Bert D. Thomas and the scholarship fund founded in his honor here)
The St. Andrews Brethren attended the ground breaking ceremonies of the new Masonic Home in Zenith.
Bro. A.W. Dimmitt became Principal of Henry Ford School.
The population of Renton was 5000 (est) The lodge membership was 217.

In a census taken this year, it was found that Renton had 1,956 registered voters.
Bylaws resolutions: The fee for the degrees was lowered from $65 to $50. A Masters Relief Fund to aid needy and distressed Brethren was established.
The Lodge purchased four 5% first mortgage notes, issued by the Grand Lodge. For $500.00. Each note is to mature in 1937.

The Lodge sent a letter of reprimand to the DeMolay Chapter to improve their ritualistic work or suffer a withdrawal of Lodge sponsorship.

A resolution was passed to entitle qualified Brethren to life membership in St. Andrews Lodge.

Bro. Howard L. Bennett honored St. Andrews by being the first to receive a Grand Lodge appointment. He was appointed to be a District Deputy of the Grand Master.
Bro. Bennett, also presented the Lodge with cast brass Square 19and Compasses. The brass tools were made by St. Andrew’s first Master. W.B. N.H. Martin.
Bro. Lee Monohon donated 3.5 acres of land on Park Ave. for Mother’s Park.
The population of Renton was 4,488. The membership of the lodge was 196.
World War II began and several St. Andrews Brethren left to serve in the armed forces. The lodge voted to remit the dues for the Brethren in the service. Removable shutters were installed on the building to protect against showing light in case of air raid.
A neon sign was purchased for the outside of the hall.
A blood bank was started for the use of St. Andrews Brethren and their families. Whenever servicemen were present, they were introduced by including their rank. ie. Bro. Major Etc.

At a district meeting at St. Andrews, the attending MWGM announced that a written cipher would soon be produced for this Grand Jurisdiction and Alaska.
WM Steve Drovetto directed all Past Masters to provide a photograph to be framed and hung in the hall.
St. Andrews Brethren formed a male quartet and performed throughout the district and county.
The first study group was formed during this year. The group met on the 3rd Wednesday to further their knowledge of Freemasonry.
Dues were raised from $6 to $8.50 and initiation raised to $100.
Repair work and refurnishing of the Lodge was completed. The population was 16,039. The membership reached 411.
W.B. Lee Monohon, Past Master of this Lodge and the moving force behind the passage of the Grand Lodge resolution to change the opening ritual, passed away. The first donation to the “Home Endowment Fund” to the Masonic Home was made in his name.
VWB H.L. Bennett further distinguished himself and our lodge by receiving a G.L. Appointment as Chairman of the Research and Education Committee.
This year marked the 75th anniversary of St. Andrews Lodge. The custom/tradition of awarding 35 year membership pins was begun this year.
The Honorable Bro. Henry M. Jackson, U.S. Senate, was featured speaker at our lodge on September 20th. A letter was received from the Superintendent of Renton Schools, inviting the Lodge to lay the cornerstone for the new A.W. Dimmitt Jr. High School. W.B. Dimmitt was raised in this Lodge and served as Master.
The population of Renton was 18,453. The lodge membership was 495.

Redistricting caused St. Andrews to move from district 7 to 13. VW Avery Garrett lost his job as Deputy of the Grand Master due to this change. (DD must belong to the district he presides over and district 13 already had a DD) No problem! VW Avery is soon to become the Mayor of Renton.
The mortgage was paid off and a Mortgage burning ceremony was held.
Lodge voted to revise meeting schedule to the 1st Saturday of the month.
A committee was formed to investigate the purchase of land for “Lodge use in the future.”
Land was purchased for investment purposes.
Senator, Bro. Henry M. Jackson visited again and addressed a large Masonic assembly at our Hall.
Bro. Oliver Hazen, a member of St. Andrews, was made Superintendent of the Renton Public School System.
Lodge building sold to the Telephone Company. The School Awards Program was inaugurated. The chairman for this event was none other than Bro. Oliver Hazen.
The Building Board located our future home at 5th and Williams. (present site.)
The investment property was traded for property on 5th and Williams. (present site.)
Ground breaking ceremonies were held and the cornerstone was laid by MW Robert L. Gilmore, Grand Master.
Dedication ceremonies were held by MW Frank E. Ulin. VW James O. Wood delivered the dedication speech.
The population of Renton was 26,686. The lodge membership was 492.
The investment property, purchased in 1964, was sold for $40,325.

Bro. James O. Wood was elected Grand Master of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons of Washington.
The Population of Renton was 30,612. The membership was 407.
The population of Renton was 34,340.