Author: Alex G. Powers
The Gardner Masonic Lodge was established in 1868, just eleven years after the formation of the city of Gardner, Kansas. Eleven years it took, but with Freemasons living and working in Gardner since the very beginning, as the town grew they knew it was time to start a lodge of their very own. Proudly holding an early membership composed of many of the same names as those influential men that made this area what it is today. From humble beginnings, leasing space from the local Odd Fellows hall to the first hall of our own that sadly went up in flames in 1906, to the community staple Masonic Temple erected promptly afterwards in 1907 which houses the lodge to this day. The Freemasons of Gardner held a key role, unknown to many, setting the foundation stone of the area with Gardner Masons found in every walk of life throughout this proud and trailblazing community. From the first mayor, earliest physicians and surgeons, farmers, ranchers, teachers, Sheriff’s, officers, soldiers, and local business owners, Gardner Freemasons, while maybe not always publicly known, have often been all around you. We have been here since the start and after 150 years and two other lodges merging into our membership the Gardner Masons remain strong and have no plans on going anywhere soon. October of 2018 marked the sesquicentennial celebration of the lodge. In honor of that epic milestone and all the history that lay before it we strive to keep our history alive by preserving what we have and recovering what has been lost. It is now a feat of our own today, but a collective effort of every Freemason that has blessed our rosters over the years, that has brought us to this point. In honor of them we present to you with this history of Gardner Lodge No. 65, Ancient Free and Accepted Masons of Kansas.