History of Eureka Lodge No. 36, Rochester New York
The first meeting of Eureka Lodge #36 took place on May 8, 1879. It was held under dispensation in the Wilder Building, located at the intersection of Main and Exchange Street in downtown Rochester. The charter was granted on December 3, 1879. In the years since, the Lodge and individuals among its membership have made many worthwhile contributions to the Rochester community.
Among our notable achievements over the years, the one for which Eureka Lodge #36 is currently most proud, is the role it played in establishing the monument to the memory of the great abolitionist, writer and orator Frederick Douglass, which now stands at Highland Park in Rochester. Our Brother, John W. Thompson, at a regular meeting of the lodge held November 20, 1894, made a motion that a committee be formed for the purpose of raising funds for erecting a monument in memory of the Afro-American Soldiers and Sailors who had fallen in the wars of this country. Shortly after the passing of Frederick Douglas, the committee decided that the monument would be restructured and erected in the memory of Mr. Douglas. It was on June 20, 1898 that the Grand Master of Prince Hall Masons in the State of New York, Most Worshipful E. R. Spaulding, accompanied by members of his cabinet, and joined by members of Eureka Lodge #36 and Estella Chapter #7, Order of Eastern Star, joined in a ceremony to lay the cornerstone for the Frederick Douglas Monument.
In our history two Grand Masters of Prince Hall Masons in the State of New York, have been members of Eureka Lodge. Most Worshipful Henry A. Spencer (1905 – 1914) and Most Worshipful Ernest Dubois (1954 – 1955).
Eureka Lodge has been fortunate to have attracted to its membership some of the Rochester community’s outstanding citizens. In recent memory these include, while not being limited to: the city’s first African American commission of the department of municipal government (Past Master Stanley Thomas, Sr.); the first Black to practice law in the city (attorney Lloyd Hurst); the first Black to be appointed to the city police department (Captain Charles Price), City Court Judge (Roy W. King),the first African-American mayor of the City of Rochester (Mayor William A. Johnson) and the youngest Rochester City School Board President (Malik Evans). Other brothers of this fraternity have achieved acclaim in private business: Emerson U. Fullwood (Corporate Officer, Xerox Corporation), Millard Latimer Sr. (Funeral Director), John R. Hill, Jr. (Author – Third Degree: Leadership, Project Management and Old School Masonry) and Tony Jackson (Panther Graphics Printing). Many of our Brothers have achieved management and supervisory positions with prestigious employers in our community, including Kodak, Xerox, General Motors, and Rochester Institute of Technology to name but a few.
Eureka Lodge has recently extended charitable support to the Open Door Mission, the Boy Scouts of Greater Rochester, the Center for Missing and Exploited Children, the Determined Divas and several other organizational programs across Rochester. In addition we have supported the Ronald McDonald House “Have a Heart” Campaign, the Masonic Child ID program and the Salvation Army’s Red Kettle Campaign. On a regular basis, Eureka provides usher service at the Martin Luther King, Jr. Greater Rochester Commission Community-wide Worship Service. In an effort to further support the youth of our community, Eureka annually awards a scholarship in the name of one of our late members, Moses Anderson. Youth are further supported through Eureka’s mentored chapter of the Knights of Pythagoras, Martin Luther King Jr. Chapter #1.
These projects and these men and others like them, give Eureka Lodge in particular, and Prince Hall Freemasonry in general, ample reason to be proud.
616 Brown Street
Rochester, NY 14611