There is some uncertainty about the first Lodge established in Delaware. The Grand Lodge of Scotland in 1764 is said to have issued a warrant to Union Lodge, No. 191, at Middletown, for General Marjoribank's Regiment. Failing this, Lodge No. 5, at Cantwell's Bridge, warranted on June 4, 1765, by the Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania, was the pioneer Lodge of the State. The Grand Lodge of Delaware was established under rather unusual circumstances. Nine Brethren. said to re represent Lodge No. 31, Grand Lodge of Maryland and Nos. 33, 96, and 14, Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania resolved to form a Grand Lodge. On June 7, 1806. Grand Officers were appointed and, without any previous installation, opened the Grand Lodge. The Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania refused to recognize it as five Lodges were deemed necessary to form a Grand Lodge and three of the Lodges taking part were indebted to the Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania for fees and dues. Not until 1816, when Lodge No. 5, at Cantwell's Bridge, joined it by permission of the Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania, and made up the number of five constituent Lodges, was the new Grand Lodge fully recognized.
The first Chapter in the State was opened on January 24, 1806, by a Convention at which were present Charles Mareighny of New York; John Sellers, Wilmington; George Monroe, Edinburgh, James Jefferis, Belfast; Evan Thomas, Santa Cruz; and Edwin Roche, Virginia. In 1831, this Chapter amalgamated with Hiram, No. 6, as Washington and Lafayette Chapter, No. 1. On June 24, 1817, delegates from the seven Chapters in Delaware, namely Hope, No. 4; Union, No. 7; Temple, No. 3; Washington, No. 1; Hiram, No. 6; Washington, No. 5, and one at Newcastle, held a Convention at Wilmington and established a Grand Holy Royal Arch Chapter. About the year 1856, however, it ceased to meet and, except for an irregular Convocation held in 1859, nothing more was heard of a Grand Chapter of Delaware until January, 1868. A meeting of Royal Arch Masons was then held which finally- proceeded to eject Grand Officers and adopt a Constitution. A Charter was issued by the General Grand High Priest, and at a meeting on January 20, 1869, the Grand Chapter of Delaware was organized and the Officers installed. Delaware is one of the States which make the Order of High Priesthood an essential qualification to the installation of the High Priest elect.
Gunning Bedford Council, No. 1, at Wilmington, was granted a Dispensation on February 10, 1917, and a Charter on September 30, 1918. It has been said that Jeremy L. Cross, while on a lecture tour, conferred the Degrees on some of the Brethren in Wilmington and Newcastle, but of this there is no evidence.
A Commandery was organized in Delaware by the Grand Encampment of the United States at Wilmington. namely, Saint Johns? No. 1, which was chartered on September 18 1868. Delaware Lodge of Perfection, chartered on September 2, 1910; Wilmington Council of Princes of Jerusalem, chartered on September 91, 1911; Wilmington Chapter of Rose Croix. chartered on September 21, 1911, and Delaware Consistory, chartered on October 3, 1912 are all at Wilmington, under the Supreme Council, Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite. Northern Masonic Jurisdiction.
Past Masters or others, sent, by a Lodge to represent it in the Grand Lodge, in place of the Master and Wardens, if these are absent. have been in some of the American Jurisdictions called delegates. The word is a modern one, and without good authority. Those who represent a Lodge in the Grand Lodge, whether the Master and Wardens or their proxies, are properly representatives.
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