NoeHill Travels in the American West: California

National Register of Historic Places in Solano County

National Register #72000259: Benicia Masonic Lodge
10 November 2004
(Click Photo to Zoom)
National Register #72000259
Benicia Masonic Lodge
110 West J Street
Built 1850

This is the first Masonic hall built in California. It was dedicated on December 27, 1850, about three months after California became a state. Many of California's prominent pioneers received their Masonic degrees in this modest building. Among them was George Yount, a noted early settler in Napa County.

Solano was one of the 27 original counties in California, with Benicia named as the county seat. The lower floor of the Masonic hall was used by the Court of Sessions for two years until Benicia built a new City Hall which also served briefly as the third State Capitol of California.

The Masons sold their hall around 1888 for community purposes.

In 1950, the Masons regained ownership of the building and refurbished it. Still in use, it is one of three places in California where any Masonic lodge may hold meetings to confer degrees.

Benicia Masonic Lodge is also California Landmark 174: First Masonic Hall Built In California.

Some Masonic Halls in California

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