Article written and read at our Centennial Meeting of our current Charter, October 1992.


By Howard Coop

The history of Lancaster Lodge No. 104 of Free and Accepted Masons is unclear.  Records are scarce, but this is known.

Lancaster Lodge No. 104 F. & A. M. was first chartered by the Grand Lodge of Kentucky on August 29, 1838.  Its charter was arrested October 24, 1889.  The original charter being lost, a new charter bearing the same number was issued to a lodge organized on October 24, 1873.  The Lodge organized in 1873 became defunct in 1890.  With new interest in Freemasonry in Lancaster, the Lodge was reorganized in 1892 an on October 19, 1892; the present charter bearing the same number 104 was presented.  For the past one hundred years, Freemasonry has remained vigorous in Lancaster.

After meeting in an upstairs room on the Public Square for many years, a new Lodge Hall was constructed in 1986.

This does not tell the full history of Freemasonry in Lancaster.  The first mention of Freemasonry that I have been able to find was in 1806. 
This date associates Masonry with Lancaster Academy, the first school organized in the city. 

Lancaster Academy was granted a charter by the Kentucky Legislature on December 22, 1798.  The school was also known as the Male Seminary and the Academy of Garrard.

About 1806 and between that date and 1815, the Masons erected a building for the school at the corner of Campbell and Buford Streets.  It was a two story building with the first floor occupied by Lancaster Academy and the second floor used as a Lodge Hall.

The original building at Campbell and Buford burned in 1875, and it was replaced by the present building that houses the Academy Inn, a restaurant that takes its name from the school that originally occupied the building.  Lancaster Academy continued until about 1885.

Scant records indicate that the first school in Lancaster was closely associated with Masonry if not operated by it.  These records also indicate that Masonry was active in Lancaster for at least 33 years before Lancaster Lodge was chartered.