1920-1929

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In the early part of 1920, our Brethren were shown detailed plans of our proposed new Temple, drawn up by Bro. William Reid, Architect. As a perfect example of how delaying a decision can cost you, the building costs of our new Temple were now estimated at £8,500 as opposed to the £3,500 we were quoted in 1914.

Since the Morison Memorial was no longer needed for the War effort, we gave our thanks to Lodge St. John Dalmuir No. 543 and returned to the halls we had been using. Attendances continued to grow after the War years and, at our Installation meeting of 1920, when Bro. Thomas Hamill was installed as Master, 300 Brethren attended. The Craft flourished in the town and a new Lodge, Clydebank No. 1234 was granted a Charter on 4th November of that same year, their first Master being Bro. James Kelso, a Founder Member of Lodge Barns o'Clyde. Just three years later, another 1234 Founder Member took the Chair of the new Lodge, another Barns o'Clyde Founder Member, Bro. Charles Sherwood.

Proof of the interest in the Lodge was shown when on 20th May 1920, a Business Meeting was called to discuss the proposed new Lodge Bye Laws, and 238 Brethren attended.

In July 1920, father and son Arthur (58) and Albert (22) Lusignia were initiated with four others.

A Charter for a new daylight Lodge, Anima 1223, was granted on 5th August, 1920, and the Lodge consecrated on 3rd September 1920, by Bro A. A. Hagart Speirs, of Elderslie, D. L., J. P., Right Worshipful Provincial Grand Master of Glasgow. The first name on the Petition to Grand Lodge to create the new Lodge was that of Bro. William Welsh, a M.M.M. of the Barns. Bro. Welsh, Roll number 463, joined 1018 on 10th August 1911. Bro. Welsh became the first D.M. of Lodge Anima and their second R.W.M. in 1921-22. Sadly, we have little more knowledge of his progress there, as the first Minute Book of that Lodge is missing.

This years' elections provided another lengthy process when Bros. Thomas Hamill, Alexander Stevenson and Matthew Robertson all being nominated for the Chair. The first vote was 152 - 103 - 87, with Bro. Robertson dropping out. The second vote was 201 - 139 in favour of Bro. Hamill. We also changed a 1018 tradition when our Annual Installation, previously always held in November to December.

On 10th February 1921, Bro. Kelso led his Lodge into 1018 and conferred the M.M. Degree on seven F.C. Freemasons and the visits between our two Lodges continue to this day.

When 1921 ended, our Master Bro. Thomas Hammill, who had missed attending for part of his year through severe illness, had thankfully recovered.

Our Benevolence was still widespread, assisting sick Brethren, widows of the Lodge and continued support of the Royal, Western and Victoria Infirmaries, the Samaritans Hospital, Dunoon Homes, the Ear Nose & Throat Hospital, the Eye Infirmary, the local Eye Dispensary and the local Nursing Association all being awarded annual sums.

To raise funds for our new Temple, the Lodge held a series of Bazaars, Whist Drives and Dances, which were all well supported.

In 1922, Bro Hamill I.P.M. presented a photographic portrait to the Lodge with the intention of commencing a P.M.'s portrait gallery. Again, with the passage of time and various moves, these photos are no longer in the possession of the Lodge and we have fallen away from the practice of honouring our Past Masters in this way.

When a gentleman called Enrico Liverani applied to join the Barns, his application was endorsed in a very strong manner. Whilst well known in the town, the Liverani's were a well known hairdressing establishment in Clydebank for many generations, and proposed by Bro. John McLaren P.M. and Bro. William Phillips, Secretary, the Enquiry Committee were also read a letter from Bro. E. Coia, ex President of the Italian Masonic Association of Glasgow. Mr. Liverani was accepted for membership and became a freemason at the hands of the Master, Bro. John McArthur in May 1922.

The children of the members of the Lodge were given a wonderful treat on Saturday 5th August 1922, when over 400 kids were taken to Cochno Farm, where they spent the afternoon "racing, playing football, tug of war, and novelty racing" after which, tea was provided by Clydebank Co-Operative Society and music played all afternoon by Duntocher Band.

As money came in from dances and the ever popular whist drives, the Lodge invested money with the Burgh Housing Scheme as well as maintaining a healthy bank balance.

At our Regular Meeting on 12th October 1922, the Master Bro. McArthur moved that the Lodge support the Petition of the proposed new Lodge "Cochno" from the Duntocher and Hardgate districts of the town. The new Lodge's Petition was duly signed.

Attendances were still healthy as was seen by the 345 who attended to witness Bro. Adam Heaton become the tenth man to become Master of Lodge Barns o'Clyde on 14th December 1922. With this new team of Office Bearers, it was agreed that the widows of the Lodge receive a cash gift of £2 each, in today's terms a sum equal to almost £1,000 per person.

Bro. Heaton R.W.M. announced at the Regular Meeting of 11th January 1923 that it was his intention to form a Lodge Instruction Class in order to maintain the standard of degree work in the Lodge.

To augment our funds being put aside for the coming expense of the new hall, Bro. Heaton R.W.M. also formed a Jumble Sale Committee to begin the process of holding regular sales to add more money to the project.

In March of that year, Bro. Thomas Montgomery P.M., part of a Deputation from Lodge St. Munn No. 496 carried out a M.M. Degree for the Barns, on the occasion of that Lodge's first visit to 1018.

While our attendances remained high, we saw a reduction in applicants, and by now, one degree per evening became more normal. During these degrees, fewer Candidates went through. Unemployment was rife in the area and people simply did not have the money to pay entrance fees. That year saw 21 Intrants, our then lowest ever total.

On 14th April, within the Lodge Rooms, we held our first Jumble Sale, with the grand total of £40 being raised and going to the Building Fund. That same month, we received a request from the Gaelic Society of Inverness to donate towards the upkeep of a "Cairn" on the site of the Battlefield of Culloden. This request was left for consideration by members.

The Master, Bro. Heaton advised the Lodge that he had attended the Consecration of Lodge Cochno Duntocher No. 1304 in February and an invitation was received from 1304 to visit their Lodge and confer the E.A. Degree on 2nd May 1923.

The 14th June of that year proved an emotional evening as the Lodge bade farewell to Bro. McLaren P.M., who was leaving to start a new life in America.

The Lodge was informed by the Church that they would soon be in need of their premises and given six months notice to leave. With this in mind, a Notice of Motion was proposed that the Lodge make plans to "build a new Temple, costs not to exceed £3,000 inclusive of fittings". Bro. William Reid, who had done so much in the design of our new Temple advised the Lodge with regret that he was leaving to take up a post in Singapore and after debate and recommendation, the Building Committee agreed to recommend to the Lodge that we engage the services of Messrs. Balfour and Stewart as architects for the project. Having no option, the Lodge gave notice to our tenants, Leslie Kirk and Hugh Murdoch, asking them to vacate by October.

The Barns lost another Past Master when Bro. William Anderson P.M. emigrated to Canada in that same year.

The 1923 Balance Sheet included the following joint statement from the Master, Secretary and Treasurer: "Our present Lodge Room now being required for to carry out the various agencies of Morison Memorial Church, we have decided to build our Hall. This will involve an expenditure of between five and six thousand pounds, and to clear this amount every member will require to recognise his responsibilities in this matter, but if we apply our energies to wipe off this debt with courage, enthusiasm and wholeheartedness, the task is not beyond our powers."

  • On 13th December 1923, the Building Committee recommended the following as tenders for the work:
  • Brick work: £2741 and 19 shillings (Leslie Kirk)
  • Joinery: £2105 12 shillings and sixpence (Leslie Kirk)
  • Steel Work: £227 13 shillings and tenpence (Fleming Bros.)
  • Slater work: £101 8 shillings and sixpence (A McKenzie Ross)
  • Plumber work: £355 (H Twaddle)
  • Plaster work: £460 4 shillings and ninepence (Leslie Kirk)

At the Installation Meeting on 13th December 1923, Bro. William Stevenson was made Master, and at our next Meeting on the 27th, Bro. John McArthur P.M., who had been appointed Clerk of Works, informed a delighted assembly that the first sod had been cut on the land for our new Temple, on Thursday 20th December.

In February 1924, 1018 man Thomas Montgomerie was honoured to act as the first Secretary for the newly formed Past Masters Association of the Masonic Province of Dunbartonshire. Bro. Montgomerie had affiliated to 1018 the previous year from Lodge St. Munn No. 496.

Cost-saving adaptations were made to the original Temple plans and the date of 26th April 1924 was set aside for the laying of the Foundation Stone. The Ceremony was conducted by Bro. Rev. T. Angus Morrison, R.W.P.G.M.

Inside the Foundation Stone were placed a sovereign, a half sovereign, a five shilling piece, a half crown, a florin, a shilling, a sixpence, a three penny piece, a penny, a half penny, a farthing, a copy of the first Bye Laws of the Lodge, a copy of the present Bye Laws of the Lodge, a copy of the 1923 Balance Sheet, a copy of Grand Lodge Laws, a copy of the ceremony used at the ceremony used for the laying of the Stone, a photograph of the present Past Masters, office Bearers and Building Committee, a report of the proceedings of Grand Lodge for 1923 and 1924, a Glasgow Herald, a Daily Mirror, a Clydebank Press and a short history of the inception and history of the Lodge. Bros. Robert Miller and David Cruikshanks were given the important task of collating these mementos and painting the box for preservation within the Stone.

The seating capacity for the new Temple was set at around 676. Estimates for the furnishings were being taken and the Bennett Furnishing Co. agreed to supply 554 tip up seats for the Large Hall and 178 for the Lodge Room. A further 60 individual chairs and three tables were to come from Patersons Ltd. in Glasgow. The members of the Building Committee met regularly and the builders were called in to explain why the work was not at a more advanced stage. The Lodge was given an assurance that work would be complete by October, as agreed.

The Master's Chair and Wardens' Chairs were ordered from George Kenning, costing a combined £33 and fifteen shillings. It was said at the time that the design of the Chairs was without comparison in any Lodge room in Scotland.

In November 1924, the builders were assuring the Building Committee that the Temple would be finalised by January 1925.

The Lodge advertised for the position of Hallkeeper and 33 men applied. This was reduced to a shortlist of five and these men were interviewed, four members of the Lodge and another gentleman. After the interviews it was agreed Bro. William Buchanan be appointed Hallkeeper.

January 1925 saw the Lodge suffer the passing of a noted Founder Member, when Bro. Christopher Ford, Treasurer since our formation, passed away.

Planning ahead for the move to the completed new Temple, the Lodge agreed to let the premises to Lodge Clydebank No. 1234, Barns o'Clyde Chapter Order of the Eastern Star, Barns o'Clyde Royal Arch Chapter, Barns o'Clyde Cryptic Council and Arc Mariners, and the Ladies Loyal Orange Lodge.

On 10th February that year, the Lodge Secretary was instructed to write to the Provincial Grand Lodge Secretary asking for representatives to inspect our Temple to "examine our Masonic Temple and if suitable in every way for Masonic purposes, grant their permission for its use."

At our next Regular Meeting, the Barns heard an appeal from the Provincial Grand Lodge to contribute towards a fund to purchase regalia for P.G.L. Due to the expenditure involved in funding our new Temple, the Lodge wrote back saying we were unable to assist at this time.

There is no doubt that the Lodge even today owes a huge debt to those members who worked tirelessly to ensure the building of our first Temple went ahead, especially to the members of the Buildings Committee who met on so many occasions to see the project to completion.

On 26th March, the Master, Bro. Stevenson, announced that our next Regular Meeting on 9th April, would be held in our new premises, and that those premises would then be consecrated by the Provincial Grand Lodge of Dunbartonshire on Saturday 18th April.

That first meeting in our new Temple was a lengthy one, there being much business and correspondence. Thereafter, an E.A. Degree took place on the following gentlemen, Hugh McEwan, roll no. 1702, Andrew McKinnon, roll no. 1703 and Angus Shaw, roll no. 1704 by Bro. William Stevenson, R.W.M. There is no note of the attendance, however, that number not being recorded.

On the latter date, P.G.L., headed by R.W.P.G.M. Bro. Rev. T. Angus Morison consecrated the Lodge with "dignity and sincerity." The sense of occasion was beautifully minuted as follows: "The Ceremony, the oration, the choir under the leadership of Bro. Adam Heaton I.P.M. indeed every part of the proceedings made the brethren realise more fully and more seriously probably than ever before that it was a glorious privilege and single honour to be a member of our great institution." After the Ceremony, over 300 sat down to Dinner supplied by the Co-operative Baking Society and there followed an evening of "song and sentiment, a Harmony which was voted by all to be easily the finest in the history of our Lodge."

Our long serving Secretary Bro. Philips summed up beautifully the ambitions of the Barns when, having seen the building of the Temple completed, said "Now that our material needs have been satisfied, we should be able to do greater things than build a temple of stone."

In April 1925, a letter was read from Bro. Thomas Dobbie, Secretary of Lodge St. John Dalmuir No. 543 enclosing a substantial donation of £50, 10 shillings and sixpence towards our building costs.

The 1925 Balance Sheet showed 21 Regular Meetings, 7 Special Meetings and 90 Committee Meetings, comprising Office Bearers, Enquiry, Benevolence, Building, Hall and Bazaar Committees; with 35 Initiates.

On 10th December, Bro. Alexander Stevenson was the first Brother made Master in our new Temple, with 308 Brethren signing the Book.

Bro. George Hill, W.S.W. was one of the artistes who performed at Lodge Dumbarton Kilwinning No. 18's Bi-Centenary Dinner at a function presided over by that Lodge's R.W.M. Bro. Sir Iain Colquhoun, Bart. on 6th January 1926.

Another fundraiser took place on Monday 1st February 1926 when a picture show and jumble sale took place. An incredible 800 tickets were sold for the event.

That same month Alexander Stewart McGhie senior (49) and junior (24) joined the Lodge along with four others. The father and son lived in, appropriately enough, McGhie Street.

In March 1926, we were read a letter from Bro. Thomas B. Donald, Secretary of Lodge King George No. 79 Calgary, who had enjoyed a visit from a member of 1018, Bro. John R. Strain.

In that same month another long lasting connection began when we received Bro. John Jackson, Master Lodge Cochno No. 1304, who conferred the E.A. Degree on four Candidates. The visits between our two Lodges are still going strong.

During these early years, it is worth noting that many letters were read from other Lodges asking us to confer degrees on their Brethren and readings of letters from different Lodges advising that they had, at our request conferred degrees on 1018 Brethren.

Another first for the Barns occurred on 22nd April 1926 when a Deputation from the Past Masters Association of Dunbartonshire, headed by Bro. George I. Miller, Past Master of Lodge St. John Dalmuir No. 543, P.P.G.S.W. and President of the Past Masters Association, who conferred the Mark Ceremonial on 26 Master Masons of the Lodge and on a Master Mason of Lodge Ellangowan No 716 and a Master Mason of Lodge Cochno No. 1304. On that historic occasion, 185 Brethren signed the Book.

In April 1926 a meeting was called for Office Bearers, members and lady friends where the assembly was informed that the Lodge had spent the sum of £6,385 thus far in the building and furnishing of our new home, and that all had been paid except the sum of £558, a tremendous achievement. In a determined effort to clear this amount with the minimum of delay, the Lodge agreed to hold a Christmas Fayre, a series of "picture shows" and the ever popular whist drives. Meantime, the bank agreed to an overdraft of £1,000 to enable us to finish the fitting out of the Temple and halls. Brothers Alexander Hynd, John Russell and William Phillips stood as personal guarantors against the loan.

On 23rd September 1926, the Barns broke from tradition and, on that occasion, the recently formed Instruction Class conferred a Degree, an E.A., on four Candidates, the workers being Bros. John Craig D.M., George Hill W.S.W., Alex Gilfillan, Harry Jolly, James Dobbie and Alex Fleming.

An historic meeting took place in our Temple on 21st October 1926, when the Grand Master Mason of Scotland, Bro. The Right Honourable John James, 12th Earl of Stair installed Bro. Rev. T. Angus Morrison into a second term as Provincial Grand Master. After the Installation ceremony, the Brethren dined in our halls.

The next Lodge to visit the Barns to confer a Degree was Lodge Union No. 332 who led by R.W.M. Bro. James Watt, on 26th May 1927, conferred the F.C. Degree on six E.A. Freemasons.

That year's Balance Sheet showed the funds of the Lodge to be healthy, and that 33 initiates and 1 affiliate had joined our Lodge. Noting, however, that many members had drifted away, the Master made an appeal to lapsed members to return to their Mother Lodge and enjoy the benefits of the fellowship. Grateful thanks were intimated to the Ladies of the Lodge, who by their efforts in assisting with our Christmas Fayre, had raised £160 towards our Building Fund.

As the Lodge progressed towards 1928, and what was referred to in the Minute Book as our "coming of age", plans were made for a celebration to commemorate the event. On 9th February of that year, the Lodge was visited by the Provincial Grand Lodge of Dunbartonshire, the Deputation being headed by the R.W.P.G.M., Bro. Rev. T. Angus Morrison, who praised the Barns in the highest terms for the great work done since our inception and on behalf of the Provincial Grand Lodge, thanked 1018 most sincerely for the Benevolence handed out in the last 21 years. After the usual business, Bro. George Hill, R.W.M., made a fine gesture by handing the Mallet, and control of the Lodge to Bro. Daniel McIntyre P.M., P.G. Treasurer, the second Master of our Lodge, our first Master being in Australia and unable to attend. The Lodge's first Wardens were given their Chairs by the Wardens of 1928. Our Lodge's first Minute was read to an enthralled assembly of almost 400 Brethren. Bro. McIntyre P.M. made proud reference to the standard of work that the Lodge maintained and expressed his delight that the Lodge's first Tyler, Bro. Fred Lindsay and first Secretary Bro. William Phillips still occupied those same offices; that two other original Office Bearers, Bro. Alexander Stevenson I.P.M. and Bro. Matthew Robertson D.M. were still in Office, and that he was equally delighted to see in the Lodge our first Installing Master, Bro. McNeill, P.M. Lodge Dumbarton Kilwinning No.18. After the Meeting, a fine Dinner was served to 330 Brethren.

It may be of interest to know that, in those days, Office Bearers not in attendance were required to explain their reasons in writing and that, out of courtesy, members of the Lodge often wrote to apologise for missing a meeting.

As an appreciation of the hard work over many nights of the year, the Lodge agreed to increase the Hall-keeper's salary from £40 per annum to £50 per annum.

A novel way of fund-raising was tried in 1928, when it was proposed we purchase 15 tickets for the Scotland v England International to be played at Hampden the following April. Each ticket cost 12 shillings and sixpence (62 and a half pence today). These would be raffled at a penny a ticket (a pre decimal penny), 6,000 books of tickets being sold. It would be announced the following April that the initiative would make a profit of £55 and 11 shillings.

A wonderful gift of ivory mallets was presented to the Lodge by Bro. Sydney Cross, now resident in a "distant country". These mallets are now in our Museum.

In March, Lodge Bonhill and Alexandria Royal Arch No. 321 were welcomed into 1018 when Bro. Charles Stewart P.M. of that Lodge advanced to the Mark 33 Candidates, to an assembly of 157.

On 27th September, Bro. Hill, Master thanked the Brethren who had formed the Deputation and accompanied him to Lodge Progress No. 873 to confer the F.C. Degree at that Lodge's request a few days earlier. At our Meeting, Bro. Hill, Master welcomed a Deputation from Lodge Union and Crown No. 103, headed by Bro. W.S. Campbell, R.W.M. and presented him the Mallet, in order that his Lodge confer the E.A. Degree on seven of our Candidates. 220 Brethren were present that evening.

On 22nd November, Honorary Membership was conferred on the R.W.P.G. Master Bro. the Rev. Thomas Angus Morrison.

Our reputation for Degree work became widespread and this was due to excellent Ceremonial work and the contribution of the Barns o'Clyde Choir led by Bro. Adam Heaton.

More and more Lodges were visiting to confer Ceremonial work and in January 1929, Bro. David Paton P.M. Lodge St. Skea No. 1252 (Montrose) conferred a F.C. Degree on six E.A. Freemasons of 1018.

Due to the large numbers without a job, following the Great War then the Depression and General Strike, many members left Scotland for other lands to seek a settled life. The Barns had seen many go, including Founder Members and Past Masters, and on 24th January 1929, Bros. Alexander Gallon Caldwell and George McNeill McCaskill attended their last 1018 Meeting before departing for "foreign lands".

In that month, the Lodge won much admiration locally and beyond when the Barns o'Clyde Male Voice Choir performed concerts for the Samaritan Guild for the Blind, the Royal Cancer Hospital in Glasgow and the Boys Brigade in Scotstoun. The Choir were featured too at several of our "At Home" social nights that attracted attendances of 200, raised much needed funds and cemented friendships.

Our Mark Ceremonial of that year was conferred by a visiting Lodge St. John No. 187 (Carluke) and 31 Master Masons of the Barns, as well as Brethren from Lodges St. John No. 26 (Dunfermline), Clydebank No. 1234 and Cochno No. 1304 were advanced by Bro. James Barclay P.M., Lodge St. John No. 187.

As in the previous year, on 12th September 1929, we welcomed Lodge Union and Crown No. 103, their Deputation headed by Bro. Angus Reid, R.W.M. and presented him the Mallet, in order that his Lodge confer the M.M. Degree on three F.C. Freemasons, with 160 Brethren witnessing the work.

On the 21st, another father and son joined the Lodge, Peter Hullachan Allison (41) and James Hullachan Allison (27), whose occupations were "Variety Artiste". The Brothers Allison were Initiated with Malcolm Burns, a baker and David Cruikshanks, a bricklayer. The Ceremony was conducted by Bro. George Hill, Master, after which Bro. John Chisholm, W.S.W. conferred a F.C. Degree on Bro. John Shepperd Lochhead.

Days later, on the 26th, we took pride in welcoming a Deputation from Lodge Clydebank No. 1234 into the Barns and Bro. William Blair, Master of 1234 was handed the Mallet to confer the E.A. Degree on our behalf. The conferring Master was Bro. James Kelso, P.M. Lodge Clydebank No. 1234, and member of The Bridgeton and Glasgow Shamrock and Thistle Lodge No. 275 and member of Lodge Barns o'Clyde No. 1018. Seven gentlemen were initiated on that evening and 150 attended.

An extract from the website of Lodge St John 187 Carluke is quoted here with permission:

"The Musical Ritual
Clydebank is famous for its ships
Carluke for fruit and jam
But 187 and 1018
For friendship hold the palm
1929
The phenomenal success of the Barns 0' Clyde Lodge No. 1018 and their special degree work, was extended to Carluke when a deputation which filled two of the largest motor buses, arrived at 187 on the 2nd March, 1929. Owing to the great numbers present, the deputations were admitted in two portions. The first was headed by Piper Norman McPherson and the second by Pipe-Major David Marshal!. Both pipers were in full Highland costume. It was said at the time that it was the largest gathering of brethren ever present at a Third Degree ceremony in Carluke. Other Lodges represented on that day were 18, 20, 21, 27, 103, 114, 124, 166, 178, 204, 347, 375, 406, 427, 465, 543, 551, 866, 1018, 1141, 1234, 1254 and 1304. R.W.M. Bro. Shields reflected that such a magnificent exposition had never been heard in 187 and constituted and marked an event that would become historical in the annals of Lodge St. John No. 187. The (1018) male voice choir had added greatly to the occasion and deservedly earned the appreciation of everyone present.
At the next regular meeting of the Lodge, it was agreed that a quartet be set up to sing at the Lodge Degrees. Musical embellishment has been part of the 187 degree work since that date."

28th November 1929 was a sombre evening, when Bro. George Hill, Master announced the death of the Grand Master Mason, Bro. The Hon. Lord Blythswood. A minute's silence was observed after which Bro. David Marshall, Piper played The Flowers of the Forest.

That last year of the 1920s was a hectic year, we held 21 Regular meetings and 26 Special Meetings, initiating 77 new members and 3 affiliates. Attendances were up and the Office Bearers and members were thanked for taking such a keen interest in the prosperity and workings of the Lodge. In the Annual Report, Bro. Hill, Master took great pleasure in declaring the debt taken on to build the Temple completely repaid. In addition, the Lodge had installed central heating to replace the original gas radiators which were described in the Annual Report as a "disastrous failure". The Choir received tremendous praise for their work, both in the Ceremonial and outside at fund raising ventures. After some years in abeyance, the Children's Outing was revived, to much success.

 

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