Asheville’s Masonic Lodge, revealed

Ever wondered what, exactly, was inside the imposing Mount Hermon Masonic Lodge on Broadway in downtown Asheville? Well, Mountain Xpress was there on Saturday, Aug. 16, when the lodge threw its doors open and invited the public in to help it celebrate its 160th birthday at a well-attended fundraiser.

Click the image above to view a slideshow by Jason Sandford.

The rare look inside the massive building, designed by well-known architect Richard Sharp Smith (the man who supervised the construction of the Biltmore House), revealed a welcoming building marked by the mementos, unique meeting rooms and tributes to generations of local Freemasons. The event raised money for an orphanage and a retirement home.

Chamber music and friendly greeters welcomed guests, who took in a buffet dinner and bluegrass music. There was a library, history-filled halls with dozens of photos of past dignitaries, a blue-carpeted room for general gatherings and a Scottish Rite Cathedral on the third floor (with fourth-floor balcony.) The theater is the place where masons, obtaining degrees, act out important steps in moral progress before combinations of hand-painted backdrops dating back to 1915.

Lodge members are working on a plan to offer the building as a community event-and-performance space. For the time being, have a look inside by clicking on the photo to view an audio-slideshow tour of the building.

— Jason Sandford, multimedia editor




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14 thoughts on “Asheville’s Masonic Lodge, revealed

  1. I wish I could have attended myself and was disappointed I couldn’t. I heard they had a beautiful stage setting in there with an authentic 1800’s backdrop system. Thanks so much for the great photo gallery!

  2. Al Cottingham

    Thanks for the feature. I have been a Mason for many years now. Although I am aged and retired, I fondly remember many an evening in that building. You see I am a 32nd Degree Mason. Hallowed halls echo with the sweet memories of wonderful company.

  3. Bill Boeheim

    I would like to personally thank all of the people who were able to come and visit our lodge on August 16th. If plans come together we will be opening up the lodge again again this December for another open house.

  4. moontime

    If you want to know the truth about Masonry that even most lower level Masons don’t know because they are compartmentalized, read their “bible” Morals and Dogma by Albert Pike. On page 321 he makes it clear who their god is:
    “Lucifer, the Son of the Morning! Is it he who bears the light, and with its splendors intolerable blinds feeble, sensual, or selfish souls? Doubt it not!”

  5. Bill Boeheim

    Do you realize that the Shriners are a major branch of the Masonic order? Come on Moontime when was “Morals and Dogma” written and how do you get off labeling it as our “Bible”. We all are given a real Bible when we are made a master mason and it is instilled to us to be our rule and guide to our faith. What do you know other than the BS that you have found through a internet search? Have you worn the shoes of a Mason? No? Than I ask you, try not to judge us as if you know who we are and what we do.

  6. Rev. Jason Davis

    So great! Its a very pretty place!
    God bless those fine Masons!
    I became a Mason in July of 2004!
    I love it, and no matter what State I’m in I always run in to a brother.
    To shake the hand of a true Mason is to shake the hand of a true man of God.

  7. Bill Boeheim

    Dearest Moontime ,
    It always saddens me when i see people who are fellow human beings take a worthy text out of context to create disinformation. For all readers let us take the book of morals and dogma and examine page 321. first off the only bible used in the masonic temple is the holy bible usually the kjv.
    Now onto page 321 the reference quoted is missing the first sentence. that those receiving the 19th degree is for those having faith in God alone and for those who despise the work of Lucifer. it then goes onto explaining what the meaning of those who worship the devil is, which is the quote from moonshine. this is done to clearly illustrate who can receive the 19th degree and those who never will.
    Most attacks on Masonry are based on taking our works out of context. To all who are concerned a great book on understanding Anti-Masonic sentiment is ” the boy who cried wolf”. I am sorry you have been misinformed for so long, i will pray that you are given the ability to see through your misunderstanding, as we know God forgives us for our short comings.

  8. Pastor Traci Hoglen

    You did an awesome job on the article and description of the Temple.
    Our lodges in North Carolina, whether big or small, are outstanding. We always invite the public to come in and look around.
    We shy from no question.
    If those who wonder would only ask the question to a Mason instead of assume the answer they would be amazed at what a Mason really does.
    They are Christian men. Men who help those in the communities, shelters, shut-in’s, children, hospitals, etc. They are giving men who ask nothing in return.
    They stand on God’s Word and their faith within Him. To become a Shriner you must first be a Mason. Most do not know this.

    Don’t be shy… Ask a Mason.

  9. moontime

    Like I said, compartmentalized. I’m sure most of you are good people.
    My stepfather quit masonry because the people at the top were evil, he found out the hard way. I own Morals and Dogma, I did not get my info off the internet.
    You can pray for me if you want, and I’ll be praying right back for the truth to be revealed to you.

  10. emmanuel118

    Dear Moontime,

    Speaking from the top
    Again you speak in general terms, without answering to the negation of your original statement, I am glad you own a copy of morals and dogma for you can clearly read your own misunderstanding of the statement you made earlier. Many men join Masonry, as your stepfather has ,if you give me his name I could find out why he left Masonry in case you don’t really know. Many have left Masonry because they entered Masonry under false expectation, example: to better their business contacts…to make money…or to rule the world. Masonry is a Moral organization set up to make GOOD men better. Again I will say to you any time you are ready for a debate over Masonry,our texts, practices or the bible I would be pleased to go there with you, for I am tired of people who think they are the moral voice of all.

  11. Derrick Tamba

    I feel masons are people that lived the upright standards of the Most High God.Please stop critizing, critics!if you don’t know, ask, and you will get the true picture.Iam asking masons in tis room to connect me with a lodge, so that i can join, and be a

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