The origin of East Gate Lodge #155 is fortunately well-documented and can be found here at this link. But, in summary, two young men, Brothers Frank Murphy and L.V. Dickson happened to meet on a dreary PNW day in Brother Dickson’s drugstore in the Montavilla neighborhood. Both were young Masons, and both were excited about learning the secrets of Masonry and the Brotherhood that can be found within those secrets. They found some other experienced Masons, some who had barely settled in Oregon, but all who wished to find a Lodge in that neighborhood. Parkrose Lodge was founded by one of the Past Masters of East Gate, WB James Van Horn, along with a number of the East Gate members. When East Gate signed the paperwork for the dispensation it was known they would lose members to the new Lodge (and others they would support), but also that they were helping to spread the joy of Masonry in Outer East Portland. More of Parkrose’s history can be found here. Roosevelt Lodge was founded down in SE Portland, but eventually, after swapping through seven buildings, they merged with East Gate in 1983. Parkrose Lodge came home as well in 2015, and East Gate Lodge now calls the Parkrose Masonic Center home.
There is more to the Lodge than the Lodges that founded it. Back in the beginning, Oregon Masonry provided charity to many Oregonians, led by the Grand Lodge of Oregon. East Gate Lodge’s minutes show the members were constantly raising money in order to support families and small businesses. After WWII, things changed, and East Gate set sight on its own building on NE Glisan. Sadly, this building was only used for forty years, which led to East Gate renting from Parkrose Lodge since the early 1990s.
While they had their building though, they were the center of the neighborhood, providing breakfasts, entertainment, fellowship, and education to countless young men and their families. Parkrose Lodge did the same, holding pancake breakfasts, oyster stew dinners, haunted houses, and always providing charity to the Parkrose neighborhood.
Now the two that were separated are once again together, bonded together as Brothers, still ready to help out the neighborhood. Our Lodge was founded by various working men and small business owners, and nothing has changed in the past hundred years. Now we have electricians, metal workers, chiropractors, IT workers, government workers, truck drivers, railroad employees, doctors, and many more. We meet on the level and part on the square, and this has never been truer. Come visit us and have a bite to eat and see why Masonry might just be right for you.