Grand Lodge of Alaska

August 01, 2019

Grand Lodge of Alaska

Grand Lodge of the Month for August 2019

Most Worshipful John May, Grand Master

The Alaska Territory was acquired by the United States from Russia in 1867 and in the following year the Grand Master of the State of Washington issued a dispensation for a lodge in the village of Sitka. Located on an island near the present state capitol of Juneau, the lodge was later chartered as Alaska № 14. Unfortunately, the Lodge closed in 1872. In 1880 a second lodge was chartered in Sitka but it only lasted until 1887.

In 1898 gold was discovered in Canadian Yukon Territory. This brought thousands of fortune hunters to southeastern Alaska. A story is told that one gold digger’s Masonic funeral was attended by 176 Freemasons hailing form over 20 countries. In 1901 the Grand Lodge of Washington State chartered White Pass Lodge № 113 at Skagway; the gateway to the Klondike.

Between 1901 an 1978 the Grand Lodge of Washington chartered the following lodges: Gastineaux № 124 at Douglas, Anvil № 140 at Nome (the most westerly lodge in the U.S.), Mt. Juneau № 147 at Juneau, Ketchikan № 159 at Ketchikan, Tanana № 162 at Fairbanks (most northerly lodge in the world), Valdez № 168 at Valdez, Mt. McKinley № 183 at Cordova, Seward № 219 at Seward, Anchorage № 221 at Anchorage, Petersburg № 262 at Petersburg, Mt. Verstovin № 291 at Sitka, Matanuska № 293 at Palmer, Mt. Susitna № 294 at Anchorage Kodiak № 295 at Kodiak, Glacier № 303 at Anchorage, Soldotna № 307 at Kenai, Fairbanks № 308 at Fairbanks, and Adak № 309 at the end of the Aleutian Chain.

Alaska Freemasons formed their own Grand Lodge in 1981. Separating from the Grand Lodge of Washington State, James A. Williams presided as the first Grand Master. The newly chartered Alaska Lodges were numbered according to precedence: White Pass № 1, Anvil № 2, Tanana № 3, Valdez № 4 Mt. McKinley № 5, Seward № 6, Matanuska № 7, Mt. Susitna № 8, Kodiak № 9, Glacier № 10, and Kenai № 11.

Today, Grand Master John May presides over the Grand Lodge of Alaska comprised of 19 Lodges with a membership of more than 1,500 brothers.

The Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons of the State of Alaska
518 E. 14th Ave., #6
Anchorage, AK 99501
https://www.grandlodgeofalaska.org/
907-561-1477