Fulton Lodge Through the Ages:
- Fulton Lodge Charter: 1854
- Dedication of New Lodge Temple, June 29 1894
- Centennial Anniversary Program, 1954
In 1833, the first family moved to the present location of the village of Delta. By 1854 there were 200 citizens in the village. On February 22 of that year, a group of Masons residing in the area held a meeting in the home of Octavius Waters for the purpose of petitioning the Grand Lodge for a dispensation to start a Masonic Lodge in Delta.
The dispensation was granted and permission was obtained for Northern Light Lodge in Maumee, and from Superior Lodge in West Unity for the establishment of a new Lodge.
The brethren chose the name 'Fulton Lodge".
Daniel Knowles was elected Fulton Lodge's first Worshipful Master on March 1, 1854. Octavius Waters was elected Senior Warden and Robert Bloomfield, Junior Warden.
The early meetings of Fulton Lodge were held in the upper rooms of the Octavius Waters' residence. On May 17, 1854, the Lodge rented its first Lodge room from Brother J. N. Marsh for $75.00 per year. This room was on the second floor of the store building just west of the former location of the Peoples Bank (corner of Main and Monroe Street).
On October 19, 1854, a charter was granted to Fulton Lodge #248. Brother J. N. March, the Lodge Secretary, was presented the charter during the Grand Lode communication held in Chillicothe.
On December 20, 1854, the first election was held under the new charter. Octavius Waters was elected Worshipful Master. The new officers were installed the following evening.
In 1860 the Lodge purchased a lot and erected a two-story, wooden building at the present location at the corner of Main and Lincoln. The new building was dedicated on September 15, 1860.
Beginning in 1863, Fulton Lodge granted its consent, and gave up some of its members, to help establish new lodges in Wauseon, Lyons, and Swanton. Lyons and Swanton Lodges have since merged with Wauseon Lodge.
On August 18, 1892, a major catastrophe struck the village of Delta. The downtown area, including the Masonic Temple, plus many homes in the residential area, were destroyed by fire.
Fulton Lodge was left without a home. Permission was received from the Grand Master to hold regular meetings in the Odd Fellows Hall and to confer degrees in the Wauseon Masonic Temple.
Out of the ashes of despair arose many fine, new buildings. One of the most outstanding was the brick, three-story Masonic Temple. Those 95 members of the Fulton Lodge have passed down to the Brethren an outstanding memorial to Masonry.
The dedication of the new Temple on June 28, 1894 was an outstanding event. Several Grand Lodge officers and a number of nearby Lodges participated in the ceremonies.
On January 18, 1905 Fulton Lodge celebrated its 50 Anniversary with more then 200 Masons, their ladies and friends in attendance. This historic occasion was observed with special music, installation of Lodge officers, and distinguished speakers.
During and after World War I, the Lodge showed large gains in membership. Then the depression years took their toll. Many members were unable to maintain their affiliation.
The hard work of Worshipful Brothers Joseph Greisinger, Stanley Schrock, and Nelson Delano helped keep the Lodge going. The leasing of the first floor to the Post Office Department helped relieve the financial burden caused by the loss of members.
During the 1960's a Fellowcraft Club was formed. The diligent efforts of this group and the financial support of the Brethren have made possible many Lodge improvements at a fraction of the actual worth.
From 1854 to 1979, the individual members of Fulton Lodge have been leaders in our churches, our schools, and our community. Some have risen to prominence in political and military fields. Several have been chosen by Grand Lodge for positions of responsibility and service.
A tradition of excellence, a record of community involvement, and a firm belief in the value of Masonic teachings are the heritage we pass on to our Brethren of the future.
The members of Fulton Lodge have much to be proud of.