ISSUE 16, January 2006
Editorial
Historic: Sherlock Holmes incarnate
Travel: In the Footsteps of the Incas
Sport: Batting for England
Grand Lodge: Pro Grand Master's speech and Quarterly Communication
Supreme Grand Chapter: First Grand Principal's speech and Committee of General Purposes
Royal Masonic Girls' School: Stories in windows
Specialist Lodges: Brotherhood of the Angle
    Napoleonic Wars: A Mason's Word
International: Macedonia: New Grand Lodge consecrated and Enthusiasm unbound
Grand Lodge: Development of Freemasons' Hall
Masonic Rebels: Rise and fall
Bristol Museum: A Phoenix from the Ashes
Freemasonry and Religion: United in diversity
Library and Museum: Most glorious of them all
First Aid: Masons learn to shock
Education: The Third Degree and Forthcoming events
Masonic Charities, Letters, Book Reviews, Gardening

 Previous Page 
PLEASE USE THE LINKS ABOVE - OR ON THIS LINE - TO MOVE BETWEEN PAGES
 Next Page 





   
Above
The foundation stone of St. Mary's Catholic Church, Standishgate, Wigan, laid on St. Patrickís Day, 1818. In his memoirs, James Miller mentions that the lever and heavy maul used to lay the stone was presented to the Lodge of Sincerity in 1826 by the Master, John Bimson.


The 19th century Masonic rebellion in Liverpool involved a number of Wigan Lodges, and after 1825, the newly formed rebel Grand Lodge met only in Wigan. The make-up of the Liverpool and Wigan Lodges that were involved in the rebellion where similar, with the majority being tradesmen and merchants, and they all shared the same grievances.
    By 1824, however, many of the leading Liverpool rebels, such as James Broadhurst, a watchmaker in the city, had returned to the United Grand Lodge of England (UGLE).
    Another leading rebel, John Eltonhead, a Liverpool liquor merchant, returned to the fold in 1827.
    This left the Liverpool-based leader, Michael Alexander Gage, and a handful of Liverpool brethren, such as Thomas Page, Thomas Berry and John Robert Goepel, mixing with an influx of leading Wigan rebels, such as John Atherton, Ralph Ball and Robert Bolton.
    There is a gap in the minute book from the last known meeting in Liverpool in 1825, until 13 April, 1838, when the Grand Lodge met in Wigan at the Hole Iíthí Wall, in the Market Place.
    Gage was not in attendance, but original rebels Thomas Page, from the ĎAntientí Liverpool Lodge No. 31, renumbered to its original pre-Union number of 20 after the rebellion, and Robert Bolton, from the Wigan Sincerity Lodge No. 492, were present.
    A new Grand Master, William Farrimond, was elected, and the Wigan Grand Lodge began a new phase as it took on more of a Wigan identity, gradually severing its ties with Liverpool.
    By 1842, Gage, who had not attended any Lodge for 15 years, resigned from the Wigan Grand Lodge, angry at not being asked to review the re-numbering of Lodges and the granting of new Warrants, a decision that took place in a meeting held on 15 August, 1838.
    The Wigan-based Sincerity Lodge became Lodge No. 1, the Liverpool Lodge No.20 became No. 2, a move which may have added to Gageís anger. As the Wigan Grand Lodge slowly began to spread its influence, new warrants for the Lodges were issued.
    As there were only five Lodges, they were subsequently numbered one to five, though a Lodge in Barnsley opted out of the Wigan Grand Lodge, and a Lodge in nearby Warrington, called the Lodge of Knowledge, was relatively short-lived. Two more Lodges were given warrants, one based in nearby Ashton-in-Makerfield, the other, named the St. Paulís Lodge, was based in Ashton-under-Lyne.
    Perhaps Gageís opinion was not sought by the Wigan Grand Lodge in fear of his reaction to the changes. The Magna Charta of Masonic Freedom, originally written under the influence of Gage, was also rewritten in 1839.
    This reorganisation, decided by a Grand Lodge now dominated by Wigan brethren, began to forge a new identity.

 Previous Page 
PLEASE USE THE LINKS ABOVE - OR ON THIS LINE - TO MOVE BETWEEN PAGES
 Next Page