Mount Hope Lodge No. 121, A. F. & A. M. - Chester, Tyler County, Texas
Directions: US 287
Marker #: 5457011450
Year Dedicated: 1973
Size, type: 27" x 42"
Last reported condition: Fair
Mount Hope Lodge No. 121, A. F. & A. M. - Oldest Masonic Lodge in Tyler County in continuous existence under original charter; founded at a site (2 mi. N) on oldest land grant in county, issued on March 17, 1834, to Gavino Araujo by state of Coahuila and Texas. On Oct. 13, 1852, James and Samuel Barnes, John I. Davis, William Sterling, and G. B. Wallace, trustees of Mount Hope Chapel, acquired building site there for a free Protestant church, schoolhouse, and lodge hall. Lodge was organized by H. W. Carter, Benjamin Enloe, William Harrison, Jefferson Laird, William L. Mann, William Priest, William P. Sansom, Israel Sneed, Henry West, and H. A. Willson. Samuel H. Barnes, G. W. Payne, and J. W. Rotan were initiated under dispensation. The charter was granted on Jan. 23, 1853. After town of Chester was founded on the same old land grant, the lodge moved here, dedicating its new hall on March 4, 1892. Samuel Bronson Cooper (soon to be a U. S. Congressman) and lumber magnate John Henry Kirby -- both from this county -- were program speakers. The centennial anniversary of Mount Hope Lodge was celebrated May 23, 1953, with Texas Governor Allan Shivers -- also a Tyler countian -- making an address. Judge J. E. Wheat of Woodville gave the lodge history. Later generations continue works of the founders.
Decimal degrees:  N 30.925047   W -94.598498
Degrees, minutes: N 30 55.503   W 094 35.910
UTM: Zone 15, Easting 347269, Northing 3422390
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