Early History of Mount Moriah
To paraphrase two distinguished past members who wrote the lodge history for the first 225 years, England was a very different place then. It was at war with France in North America, Captain Cook was still looking for New Zealand, Clive of India was busy creating the Eastern Empire and King George II was on the throne. Amazingly the London population stood at 676,000 and the Industrial Revolution had not yet begun.
Mount Moriah began life as Lodge 31 (Lodges did not have names in those days) under the authorisation of the Grand Lodge of Antients’ minutes dated the 2nd January 1754 and the Lodge was constituted on the 9th January following a petition by “Henry Lewis and others” to meet at the Prince of Wale’s Head, Butchers Row, Smithfield. There were 19 members from all walks of life including, hatter, vintner, horse keeper, soldier and a “gent”.
It appears that the Lodge administration was very poor at that time and the Lodge was censored with various members expelled and the warrant cancelled. Within four months, the warrant was renewed but unfortunately the old Warrant was not returned. So today, we have that Warrant which dates from 25th March 1775 although it is backdated to the 9th January 1754.
The health of the Lodge declined once again and it lay dormant for 6 years. It was finally revived in 1783, meeting in Wapping with the majority of the members were sea-going or members of trades and professions closely connected. At that time, the Lodge met twice a month but due to busy agenda’s it could meet upto 30 times in a year and in 1799 that rose to 50 – a Secretary’s nightmare! During the 1810’s, several Dutchman became members no doubt due to the maritime connections. There are no other records of overseas members, more’s the pity.
In 1833, the Lodge was renumbered no 40 upon the Register of Grand Lodge and this finally changed to no 34 in 1863 due to the “closing up” of active Lodges on the Grand Lodge Register.
Mount Moriah Today
The Lodge meets at the City University Club, 50 Cornhill, London EC3, 4 times a year.
Installation is on the Third Thursday in January and the other 3 are on the Fourth Thursdays in March, May & November. We normally start at 5 pm and then have dinner about 7 pm, finishing just after 9 pm.