Extinct Lodges in the Lower North Island

This article is the result of research by the Grand Treasure, Wor. Bro. Alan Martin.

Brother Alan has recently moved to the Palmerston North district and his family history there initiated this research.

Brother Alan stated that he is currently reading a most interesting book published in 1935 entitled “the Extinct Lodges of New Zealand’ by RW Bro Colonel G Barclay Past Grand Secretary of Grand Lodge of New Zealand Freemasons. His copy belongs to the Fitzherbert Masonic Library.

His interest in this area was sparked by his brother in law George Groombridge of Masterton who has recently turned 90 and was telling him that he and his brother became members of an Orange Lodge in Masterton (probably No 59) in the 1950’s – being recruited from the Boys Brigade.

Unfortunately his tenure was relatively short!

Other Lodges in the Area from reviewing the 1955 List appearing in “the Nation” include:

  • 5. Napier
  • No, 18. Palmerston North
  • 26. New Plymouth
  • 36. Porirua
  • 43. Wellington
  • 47. Petone
  • 49/46 Wellington
  • 53.Feilding
  • 59. Masterton
  • 68/16 Wellington
  • 93. Bulls
  • 95. Wellington
  • 96. Dannivirke
  • 98. Upper Hutt
  • 122. Waipukurau

His particularly interested was in No 53 Feilding as his O’Halloran Family lived there since the early 1900’s  when Gerald O’Halloran (his great uncle) who had founded the accounting practice of G O’Halloran & Son in Auckland in  1881.

He laster moved to Feilding to become Secretary/Manager of the Colonists Land and Loan Corporation who settled the Manchester Block leaving his son Gerald Junior to manage their major client the Dilworth Estate and Trust which he subdivided in conjunction with his father in law also a Northern Irishman and leading land agent and principal of Cochrane and Sons.

They were active in Auckland in the Orange Order and the Protestant Parliamentary Association at the time Prime Minister William Ferguson Massey was the driving force.

Brother Alan’s investigation led to him researching whether Gerald Snr was involved in the Feilding Orange Lodge. He knew he was Treasurer for many years of St John’s Anglican Parish and died in 1925 aged 81 and he was buried in the Feilding Cemetery along with his wife Emma who died in 1926 and his unmarried daughter Ethel Emma Mary O’Halloran (1887-1961).

Brother Alan had received a daguerreotype of her grandfather Richard O’Halloran of Glenarm which triggered his interest in Irish History.

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