Preserving historic landmarks in Freeport – Herman Lodge No. 108

HERMAN NO. 108 MASONIC LODGE in Freeport, building established in 1903. (Photo courtesy of Mike Harris)

Story by STACY MARTIN

There are many buildings to preserve for history in Walton County.  One of these buildings happens to be Herman Lodge No. 108 of the Free and Accepted Masons, located on Madison Street in Freeport.  The Herman Lodge No. 108  was chartered in 1889 in DeFuniak Springs.  In 1901, a fire destroyed that building and was the lodge was reestablished in 1903, in Freeport.  

Lodge No. 108 has a rich history, and according to its Worshipful Master Mike Harris, the building itself was built in three parts and relocated to Freeport by two oxen. Harris also talks about how the Freeport lodge would use fog horns from cargo boats in the bayou to summon members to the nightly meetings.  The members still honor that tradition, sounding the horn before the start of their meetings.  

HISTORICAL PLAQUE IN FRONT of the Herman No. 108 Masonic Lodge in Freeport (photo by Stacy Martin)

The Herman Lodge No. 108 is currently seeking grants and raising money for restorations long overdue. Structural repairs along the hardening and water drainage repairs are needed on the site.  Other restoration projects planned for the building will be crafting replicas of the original lampposts, kerosene holders and other historical artifacts to restore the building to what it once was in 1903.   Members of the lodge are also selling raffle tickets for wood-carved toy rifles with a rack set.  The drawing will be held at the lodge on Dec. 1, and entrants don’t have to be present to win.  Proceeds from the raffle will go to the lodge that will help with the restoration process.  Anyone interested in buying tickets or who might have additional history or photos on the Herman Lodge No. 108, is asked to contact Mike Harris by phone at (256) 505-1705 or email at  bj3699@cox.net

HERMAN LODGE No. 108 Worshipful Master Mike Harris (left) Secretary Stan Kays (center) with Freeport Mayor Russ Barley purchasing the first raffle ticket fundraiser for the lodge’s restoration project (Photo provided by R. Barley).

They can also reach out to the lodge’s secretary Stan Kays by email at srkays@gmail.com.