header-image cropped width


Copyright, all rights reserved 2012                                  

Minutes of Events leading to the

Installation of 1869

The Installation Meeting of 26th December 1869, and the events leading to it, covers what was arguably the most stormy period that Lodge Caledonian has ever experienced. It is difficult at times to decipher who is who and to figure out who eventually took some of the disputed offices. In the List of Office Bearers for 1870 I used the approach of filling in the names as per the first Nomination Meeting and then replacing them as the battle raged back and forth. If on reading through the Minutes below you dispute my final Listing, then please let me know. All italics are mine, in vain attempt to clarify the text, and to add emphasis to certain points.


22 NOVEMBER 1869 (Committee Meeting)


In the absence of the Right Worshipful Master, Bro. Hayden, the Senior Warden, was called upon to preside. Bro. Hayden, having asked the Secretary whether he had received the authority of the RWM to call this Meeting, and being answered in the affirmative, proceeded to business.

He stated that at the last Monthly Meeting that some of the Brethren who had been recommended for Nomination had not been seconded and that other slight inaccuracies had occurred. It was therefore necessary that a full list of Brethren to be recommended for nomination as Office Bearers for the ensuing year should be made up for submission to the Monthly Meeting. He would therefore commence by proposing that John White. MM 392, should be recommended as Right Worshipful Master, which was seconded by Brother the Revd A S Muir. Bro Muir then recommended, as WSW, Bro Hayden, This proposal was seconded by Bro Jarvie.


The following Brethren were thereafter duly recommended and seconded.


Bro. R Cumming   Secretary

Bro. T F Laing   Treasurer

Bro. Revd A S Muir   Chaplain

Bro. J Pendrigh   Bible Bearer

Bro. D Sang   Senior Deacon

Bro. G Calder   Junior Deacon

Bro. J Gibb   Architect

Bro. J McColl   Jeweller

Bro. W B McLeod   Physician

Bro. H Manners   Bard

Bro. W Cunningham   Standard Bearer

Bro. J R Grubb   Standard Bearer

Bro. C Robertson   Grand Steward

Bro. A D Cairns   Steward

Bro. J Crawford   Steward

Bro. H M Harrow   Steward

Bro. W Jarvie   Inner Guard

Bro. D Young   Tyler


Committee consisted of the Office Bearers as above with the addition of Wm Bennett, John Masterton, W W Wotherspoon, R Strathearn, F Falk, J H Brownlie and John Lennie


24 NOVEMBER 1869 (Special Meeting)


The Right Worshipful Master in the Chair opened the Meeting when Petitions were read from James Robertson and Andrew Smail Dunn, craving admission. The Ballot proving clear, they received the Entered Apprentice Degree. After this James Patterson, of Roman Eagle Lodge was Affiliated a Full and Free Member of Lodge Caledonian. The Lodge was then closed.


25 NOVEMBER 1869 (Monthly Meeting)


The Right Worshipful Master opened the Lodge and thereafter stated that an irregular Meeting of Committee had been held on Monday the 22nd inst., without his sanction or authority. To this statement, the Secretary on being questioned gave an emphatic denial, mentioning the circumstances in which he received the instructions of The RW Master.

The RW Master, however, repeated his statement and lodged a written protest against the regularity thereof. He then called upon the Wardens to assist him in closing the Lodge.

On being appealed to by the Wardens and several of the Brethren, who showed under the provisions of the Bye Laws that it was imperative that the business of the evening should be proceeded with, and after a long and animated discussion had ensued, the RW Master agreed, and called upon the Secretary to read the Minutes of  Meetings held during the last month.

This being done, it was pointed out that no Minute of the Meeting held the previous evening had been read. The Secretary explained that not having received intimation of that meeting he was not present and could not therefore say what was done. The RW Master undertook to give him a draft of the Minute required. On the motion of Bro Jarvie, the Minutes, so far as read, were approved.

It being intimated that a Candidate for Initiation was waiting in the adjacent, the Secretary and the Deacons were instructed to make the necessary preparations.

The Petition was then read from William Mercer, who, passing the Ballot, received his1st Degree.

The Nomination and Election of Office Bearers was then proceeded with, whereupon Bro William B McLeod moved that As John White who was intended to be put forward in Nomination for RW Master had left the Lodge Room, the Nomination of RW Master should be postponed until a future Meeting, a similar course to which had been adopted on more than one former occasion. The RW Master over-ruled this, stating that Bye Law No. 9 was quite distinct and that the Nomination must proceed in strict conformity with that rule, and none other whatsoever.

To this ruling most of the Brethren present dissented and urged that the Bye Laws must be read in connection with all the other Bye Laws of the Lodge, and that it would be very expedient and detrimental to the whole interest of the Lodge were that Law interpreted in the isolated spirit which the course pursued by the RW Master would render necessary.

The RW Master further adhered and further intimated that he would allow no Brother to be Nominated for Office unless he were actually present at the time his name was mentioned.

On this footing the Nomination proceeded and the following Brethren were duly Nominated and Seconded for the Offices placed opposite their respective names :-


Bro. Major W W Wotherspoon   RW Master

Bro. W R Hayden   Senior Warden

Bro. J Pendrigh   Senior Warden

Bro. Stott   Junior Warden

Bro. William Jarvie   Junior Warden

Bro. J R Grubb   Treasurer

Bro. R Cumming   Secretary

Bro. J Farmer   Chaplain

Bro. F Falk   Chaplain

Bro. J Pendrigh   Bible Bearer

Bro. John Mitchell   Bible Bearer

Bro. W Hutchinson   Architect

Bro. George Forbes   Architect

Bro. J M McCall   Jeweller

Bro. W B McLeod   Physician

Bro. F Falk   Bard

Bro. Geddes Calder   Senior Deacon

Bro. A Walker   Junior Deacon

Bro. C Robertson   Standard Bearer

Bro. L Makower   Standard Bearer

Bro. W R Hayden   Piper

Bro. J Pendrigh   Piper

Bro. C Robertson   Grand Steward

Bro. H M Harrow   Steward

Bro. J McKay   Steward

Bro. Hope   Steward

Bro. W Jarvie   Inner Guard

Bro. D Young   Tyler


The RW Master then intimated that as in many instances two Brethren had been nominated for the same Office, a PRO-RE-NATA Meeting would be held on Thursday, 9th December next, as provided for by the Bye Law. and instructed the Secretary to call the same accordingly.

The Secretary then referred to an article which had appeared in the Scotsman Newspaper of Wednesday the 26th inst., in which it was stated that "the circular signed RWM is a forgery" and asked if the RW Master had inserted that advertisement, and if so, if it had any reference to any circular issued by the Secretary.

The RW Master admitted that he had caused the advertisement to be so published, and that it had reference to a circular issued to the Secretary. On being called to produce that circular or a copy thereof, he exhibited a circular which bore "By Order of The RWM, Robert Cumming, Secy." and on being pressed to produce one signed RWM, he was unable to do so.

The Secretary then demanded a retraction of that advertisement as he considered it to be most detrimental to his masonic position, and injurious and hurtful to his character and feelings.

The RW Master re-iterated his statement that the Committee Meeting had been held without his authority, and stated that though this was the case, he would tender the Secretary an apology if it were confined to the bosom of the Lodge. This the Secretary declined to accept, intimating that as the Grand Lodge met the following day he would take such steps as he considered the unjustifiable and calumnious nature of the charges insinuated against him demanded. The Lodge was then closed.


03 DECEMBER 1869 (Special Meeting)


The RW Master Chaired and opened the Lodge which was thereafter passed to the Fellow Craft and Bros Alexander Munro, G Ritchie, A S Dunn and James Robertson received that Degree. The Lodge was then Raised when the above four Brethren, along with W Hutchison were made Master Masons. The Lodge was then reduced and closed.




The RW Master chairs and opened the Lodge with the statement that the meeting had been called for the purpose and balloting of the different Brethren proposed in opposition as Office Bearers. Previous to that being done, Bro Bryce suggested that a show of hands in favour of the Candidates (for Office) would do as well as a ballot, which the RW Master at once acted upon.

For Bros Pendrigh and Hayden for the position of Senior Warden there were six voted for each. The RW Master stated that as the numbers were even for both of the Brethren, he was entitled by By Law No 29 to give a casting vote, which he did in favour of Bro Pendrigh. Objection was taken by the Secretary to the competency of this vote, but was over-ruled by the RW Master. The following Brethren were then carried, by show of hands again, for the different Offices placed by their respective names:


Bro. Stott   Junior Warden

Bro. Farmer   Chaplain

Bro. Mitchell   Bibler Bearer

Bro. W Hutchison   Architect

Bro. C Robertson   Grand Steward

Bro. Hayden   Piper


Committee :- Brothers Lightbody, Brownlie, Bennet, Lennie, Masterton, Sang and Sutton. The Lodge was then closed.


23 DECEMBER 1869 (Monthly Meeting)


The RW Master Chaired and opened the Lodge. The Secretary read the Minutes of Meetings held during the last month and on the completion of this Bro Sang moved that the Minutes of Meetings held since last approval, and previous the 9th of December 1869, be sustained, but that the Minute of the PRO-RE-NATA Meeting held on that date be disapproved of, that Meeting of the Lodge being wholly irregular, unconstitutional, and contrary to the Bye Laws of the Lodge. The motion was seconded by Bro John Mackay.

Considerable discussion thereupon ensued, when Bro James Paterson as an amendment that the whole Minutes read be approved of, which was seconded by Bro Robert Bryce. On the vote being taken 10 voted for the amendment and 23 for the motion.. The motion was then declared duly carried. The RW Master then stated that the Bye Laws of the Lodge were required to be read at this Meeting, but on the suggestion of the Senior Warden, Bro Hayden, they were held as read. The RW Master, Bro Dunlop, Bro Major W W Wotherspoon, RW Master Elect and the Secretary were appointed a Committee to make the necessary  arrangements for the Festival of St John to be held on the 27th of December 1869. Bros Pendrigh and D Young were appointed to make up an inventory of the clothing of the Lodge and report. The Lodge was then closed.




Past Master Bennet in the Chair opened the Lodge, stating that "In consequence of the disapproval at the last Monthly Meeting of the Minutes of the 9th December 1869. The Secretary, Bro Cummings, with Bros Mackay and Hutchison waited upon the RW Master, and after consultation, the Secretary was ordered by the RW Master to call a PRO-RE-NATA Meeting for the following day for the purpose of of carrying out the business which should have been disposed of at the previous PRO-RE-NATA Meeting of the 9th of December 1869.

At said (present) Meeting, the RW Master refused to sign the Attendance Book or open his Lodge, but wished to make a statement. Whereupon PM Bro Bennet asked the RW Master if the statement was of a masonic character and had reference to the business of the Lodge. Having answered in the affirmative, the RW Master was then requested to open his Lodge when his statement would be received with that courtesy and respect due to the Chair. This he declined to do, and retired, whereupon the PM Bro Bennet took the Chair and opened the Lodge

Having made a statement in reference to the business of the Meeting he then examined the Brethren who were present when the Secretary was authorised to call the Meeting, and having satisfied himself and the Brethren present on this point, the Lodge proceeded to ballot for the Brethren who were nominated on 25th November 1859, against each other for the same Offices, and the following is the result

Senior Warden   Bro. W R Hayden by 17 votes to 1

Junior Warden   Bro. W Jarvie by 16 votes to 2

Chaplain   Both Brethren declined to stand.

Bible Bearer   Bro. John Mitchell by 14 votes to 4

Architect   Bro. W Hutchison by 17 votes to 1

Grand Steward Bro. C Robertson by 18 votes to 1

Piper   Bro. Pendrigh by 18 votes to 0


Committee :- Brothers J Lennie, Sutherland, W Lightbody, H Manners, J H Brownlie and A D Cairns. The Lodge was then closed.


27 DECEMBER 1869 (Special Meeting)


PM Bennet Chairs and opened the Lodge after which Petitions are read from James Currie, George Bennet and John Brough, craving admission and whom, passing the Ballot, are admitted Entered Apprentices. The Lodge was then closed.

Bro Hayden, WSW then re-opened the Lodge and passed the same to the Fellow Craft Degree, subsequently raising it to the High and Sublime Degree during which Bro Brough was Passed and Raised. The Lodge was then reduced and closed.


27 DECEMBER 1869 (Festival of St John)


The Festival of St John was held within the "Albert Hotel", Hanover Street, where the RW Master Chaired and opened the Lodge, expressing regret that the RW Master Elect, Bro Wotherspoon was unable to be in attendance due to indisposition and family affliction, as informed by PM Bro Bennet.

 The RW Master then requested that Bro Bennet  Install the Office Bearers, but Bro Dunlop thought that it might better to leave it to be better done by the RW Master, Bro Wotherspoon, on his taking the Chair. Bro Bennet then moved that the Wardens of the past year should conduct the duties of their respective Chairs for that evening, which was agreed to. The Lodge was then closed and the Brethren proceeded to the Lower Lodge Room to celebrate the Festival of St John.

After partaking of a sumptuous repast the Brethren retired to the adjacent to allow the room to be prepared for receiving the several Deputations expected during the evening.. Thereafter Bro Dunlop, Acting RW Master, called the Lodge to Refreshment and sent out Deputations to the following Sister Lodges, headed by:


Mary's Chapel No 1   Bro. Revd A S Muir

St Stephen No 145   Bro. Revd A S Muir

Canongate & Leith, L&C No 5   Bro. Lightbody

Trafalgar No 223   Bro. Lightbody

Journeymen No 8   Bro. Hayden

Roman Eagle No 160   Bro. Hayden

St David No 36   Bro. Jarvie

Celtic No 291   Bro. Jarvie

St James No 97   Bro. Cumming

Edinburgh Defensive Band No 151   Bro. Cumming

St Clair No 349   Bro. Un-stated

St Andrew No 48   Bro. Un-stated


Deputations were received from, headed by, in the following order:

Rifle No 405   RWM. Douglas

Celtic No 291   Bro. Glen

St Stephen No 145   Bro. Gray

Mary's Chapel No 1   Bro. Mann

Edinburgh Defensive Band No 151   Bro. Bissett

St Clair No 349   Bro.  Edwards

St David No 36   Bro. Pettigrew

Morton No 89 (Lerwick)   Bro. G Smith

Trafalgar No 226   Bro. J Campbell

Canongate & Leith, L&C No 5   Bro. J S Matheson

St James No 97   Bro. Fox

St Andrew No 48   Bro. Un-stated


To each of whom a hearty welcome was given. Those several Deputations sent out, on their return gave in very gratifying reports as to the several Lodges they had visited. The whole evening was spent in a most pleasurable and gratifying manner. The Lodge was then re-called to Labour and closed.


28 DECEMBER 1869 (Special Meeting)


Bother Hayden (Worshipful Senior Warden) Chaired and opened the Lodge, Passing  same, when Bro Brough received that Degree. The Lodge was then Raised and the above named received the High and Sublime Degree. The Lodge was then closed.


10 FEBRUARY 1870 (Special Meeting)


The Lodge was Chaired and opened by Past Master Bennet who stated that the object of the meeting was to Install the Right Worshipful Master and Office Bearers for the ensuing twelve months, and it gave him great pleasure in introducing Bro Wotherspoon as Master Elect. Bro Wotherspoon then took the Obligation of RW Master amid the acclamations of the Brethren, after which he appointed Bro Haddow as Depute Master and Bro Bennet as Substitute Master.

On moving to the Investiture of Office Bearers, Bro Jarvie declined the Office of Junior Warden, stating that "as he had been nominated for two Offices he preferred that of Inner Guard". On the motion of PM Bennet, Bro D Swanson was unanimously elected, and he, along with Bro Hayden, took the usual Obligation. The other Office Bearers were thereafter Invested as follows. Treasurer, Secretary, Chaplain, Architect, Senior Deacon, Junior Deacon, Standard Bearers, Stewards, Inner Guard and Tyler. The following Brethren were appointed to complete the committee: Brothers Lightbody, Strathearn, Brownlie, Stott, Lennie, Farmer, and W S Sutherland. Bro Pendrigh then declined the Office of Piper, after which Bro Farmer resigned the Office of Chaplain. On the motion of Bro Bennet it was unanimously resolved that our esteemed and respected late Chaplain, Bro Muir, be re-elected for that Office. The Lodge was then Passed to Fellow Craft and Bro George Bennet received that Degree. The Lodge was then closed.


Back to Home Page   Back to Articles