St JOHN the BAPTIST Lodge No. 39,    History

Research from the book of The history of St JOHN the BAPTIST Lodge, Dated 21st December 1894 by W. Bro Andrew Hope

Many Thanks to W.Bro M.R for his work on the modern history of the Lodge & W.Bro J.E.V for recent history too

The Beginning ( or was it ! )

By the early 1730s Exeter was becoming a prosperous City, The canal had been widened in 1714, trade was increasing and ships were now arriving from Holland. Portugal, Spain, Italy.

In 1732 George the Second was on the Throne, George Washington was born and Witchcraft laws wouldn’t be abolished for another 4 Years

Several Brethren residing in & about the City of Exeter, Petitioned the then relatively new Grand Lodge of England (Formed in 1717) for permission to constitute into a regular Lodge. A deputation was duly granted, by the then Grand Master, Anthony, Lord Viscount Montaque, dated 11th July 1732 & signed by the Grand Secretary Will Reid, the Duputy Grand Master Thomas Batson & the two Grand Wardens, Geo. Rooke & Ja. Smythe.

A true plan of the City of Excester Anno Domini MDCCIX. ( EXETER in 1709 )

The Minute Books

In the first & second World War; The Grand Lodge of London, sent out a communication to all the provinces & lodges of the time, to go and hide the lodge minute books, the roll of members, Because of a possible German invasion and Hitler moving forward in Europe, The Kingdom of Great Britain started to get it self-ready for a possible invasion, The Lodge secretaries took the lists & books home to hid them in gardens, sheds & attics. With the bombing of our cities; we lost some of the minute books to the burning embers of our homes.


Centenary Warrant and Special Centenary Jewel Granted 9th May 1864

Bi-Centenary Bar authorised 7th may 1937

Bi-Centenary warrent issued 7th February 1940

Tercentenary   300 Years... Soon

Exeter Local History Society, has a Article