Masonic “Lodges” in Port Royal

A town map of Port Royal, Virginia indicating the original locations of Kilwinning Port Royal Crosse.

A town map of Port Royal, Virginia indicating the original locations of Kilwinning Port Royal Crosse. (click image to enlarge)

Many lodges in 18th century America met in private homes and properties.  Kilwinning Port Royal Crosse was no different.  From their first meeting in April of 1754 until 1786, the lodge met at the homes of Patrick Coutts, Captain John Micou, William F. Gray, Robert Gilchrist, and John Pearsons.  In addition to these homes, the lodge also met at Leonard George’s Tavern, Dorothy Roy’s Tavern, Ann Fox’s Tavern, and in the second floor room of William Hamilton Carter’s store.  Most of these properties are located on the block surrounded by King, Market, Caroline, and Water Streets in modern-day Port Royal.

In 1855, the lodge opened under it’s third charter, sharing the number 2 with Atlantic Lodge No. 2 who was chartered earlier that year.  At this time, a new town hall & lyceum had been erected on the corner of Water and King Streets.  The lodge rented the upstairs floor for their use for the cost of $30 annually.  This structure still stands today in historic Port Royal, though it is in need of significant repairs.

In 1881, the current Kilwinning Crosse Lodge No. 237, later renumbered Lodge No. 2-237 in recognition of their heritage and antiquity, opened in the county seat of Bowling Green where it resides to this day.

Sources:
Fall, Ralph Emmett. Hidden Village, Port Royal, Virginia, 1744-1981. Port Royal, Virginia: R.E. Fall, 1982.