Irish Freemasonry in Bermuda
The first recorded Irish Lodge in Bermuda was a Military Lodge #192, working during the stay of the 47th Regiment from 1783 to 1801. However this lodge, like others military lodges which subsequently came to Bermuda with the Regiment, was an ambulatory or a “traveling lodge”. They did help in instituting lodges and took part in all the festivals, Church and other Masonic activities during its nineteen year stay in Bermuda. It was chartered in 1748 and ceased working in 1823.
There were two other Irish Lodges in Bermuda, #220 that was active from 1856 and surrendered its charter on August 5, 1861. The other Irish Lodge was #209 in 1881. Little is known of either Lodge except that they are believed to have been “traveling lodges” attached to the British Regiment stationed in Bermuda.
From 1841 to 1847 Minder Lodge #63 of the Irish Constitution, worked in the 20th Regiment station on the island. It was warranted in 1748 and lasted until 1850. Like the “traveling lodges” in Bermuda, it was for members of the armed forces serving in the Regiment.
The fifth oldest lodge in Bermuda still exists as Hannibal Lodge of the Irish Constitution. Hannibal Lodge #224 was warranted February 18, 1867 and meets in Masonic Hall, Old Maids Lane, St. Georges.
Hannibal Chapter #123 Irish Constitution was chartered March 22, 1877 and ceased working May 3, 1911.
On August 15, 1881, Unity Lodge #209 was started but for unknown reasons the charter was suspended, March 1900. It was reinstated December 1900 and cancelled again October 1901. It was restored again in 1905 and finally cancelled in October 1919.
The remaining Irish Lodges warranted are still working; they are Abercorn Lodge #123 warranted June 11, 1908 and presently meet on Reid Street, Hamilton. Bermuda Garrison Lodge was warranted March 7, 1924 and meet in the Masonic Hall on Reid Street, Hamilton. In 1987 Friendship and Harmony Lodge was consecrated. They meet at Lough Memorial Hall on Khyber Pass, Warwick.
The formation of Friendship and Harmony lead to the consecration of the Provincial Grand Lodge of Bermuda in 1989. They rotate their meeting places between Hannibal Lodge St. Georges, Masonic Hall Reid Street Hamilton and Lough Memorial Hall Khyber Pass Warwick. The Irish install Master Lodge was consecrated in 1999 and they meet at Lough Memorial Hall, Khyber Pass Warwick.
The Irish Royal Arch Chapter of Bermuda #831 was consecrated in 2004.
On April 18, 2009 The Bermuda Council of Knights Masons #97 was consecrated in Bermuda.
Despite all obstacles, Irish Freemasonry is strong and vibrate in Bermuda. Bermuda is extremely fortunate to have all 3 Constitutions; Irish, English and Scottish working closely with one another to continue to promote the ideals of Freemasonry.