Prince Hall Grand Lodge

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. http://www.princehall-pa.org

According to the existing records, the first warranted Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons among men of color in Pennsylvania, was erected by the Right Worshipful Grand Master Prince Hall, assisted by the Grand Wardens Cyrus Forbes and George Middleton of the African Grand Lodge of Massachusetts on September 22, 1797, in Philadelphia. This Lodge was known as the African Lodge No. 459 of Philadelphia.

Black Freemasonry began when Prince Hall and fourteen other free black men were initiated into Lodge No. 441, Irish Constitution, attached to the 38th Regiment of Foot, British Army Garrisoned at Castle William (now Fort Independence) Boston Harbor on March 6, 1775. The Master of the Lodge was Sergeant John Batt. Along with Prince Hall, the other newly made masons were Cyrus Jonbus, Bensten Slinger, Prince Rees, John Canton, Peter Freeman, Benjamin Tiler, Duff Ruform, Thomas Santerson, Prince Rayden, Cato Speain, Boston Smith, Peter Best, Forten Howard and Richard Titley.