Laying the Foundation Stone


The laying of the foundation stone of the Union Work House, Dalkeith

(The first in Scotland)

Dalkeith Kilwinning Lodge, Dalkeith 1st September 1848

This day the Lodge met at 2 o’clock. p.m. for the purpose of laying the foundation stone of the Union Work House when the Right Worshipful Master, Sir James Walker Drummond Barnot of Hawthornden, proceeded to open the Lodge in due form after which the Grand Marshall and the Secretary of the Lodge Bro. Urquhart arranged the procession in the, following order amidst the ringing of bells and flags flying from the Kirk and Cross Keys Inn:

  • Tyler of Dalkeith Kilwinning Lodge in front
  • Regimental Band of the Queens Bays
  • Edinburgh St. Clair Lodge R.W. Master Matthew Welsh
  • Edinburgh Celtic Lodge R.W. Master Robertson with two pipers in uniform Edinburgh Roman Eagle John Coghill R.W. Master
  • Edinburgh Defensive Band Andrew Brash
  • Edinburgh St. James’ Lodge Peter Hay Jnr. came in a coach with 4 grey horses Edinburgh St. David’s Lodge Daniel Robertson
  • Peebles Kilwinning Lodge
  • Edinburgh Journeymen Lodge Andrew Kerr Clerk of Works to the Queen R.W.M. Galashiels Lodge Robert Oliver
  • Fisherrow St. John’s Peter Wilkie
  • Leith & Cannongate Kilwinning R.W.M. Lind Regimental Band of Music 33rd Regiment
  • Trustees of Dalkeith & Members of the Parochial Board
  • Sheriff Gordon and Rev. Norman McLeod of the Parish Kirk
  • Grand Lodge Tyler
  • Esk Royal Arch Chapter Dalkeith
  • Members of the Dalkeith Kilwinning Lodge in their own clothing
  • The Dalkeith Kilwinning Lodge having got the sanction of the Grand Lodge to appear as the provincial Grand Lodge of East Lothian province, the Office Bearers of this Lodge were clothed in the Grand Lodge clothing.
  • Compass, carried by Operatives
  • Level , Grand Steward
  • Square carried by Operatives
  • Plumb, Grand Steward
  • Mallet carried by Bro. James Thomson Youngest Operative
  • Silver Cup Wine carried by Bro. John Penman
  • Silver Cup Oil carried by Bro. William Thomson
  • Cornucopia carried by Bro. John Thomson
  • Architect with Plans Bro. Moffat
  • Builders Bro. Lourie Inspector Thos. Paterson
  • Wright Bro. Pennycook Inscription Brass Plate 2 Bottles with Coines etc. carried by Wm. Milne
  • Bible Bearer Bro. Robert Anderson
  • Grand Chaplain, Rev. John Boyle from Portobello
  • Grand Chaplain Rev. Norman McLeod from Glasgow
  • Grand Secretary Urquhart
  • Grand Treasurer Neilson
  • Senior Grand Warden Thomson
  • Junior Grand Warden Kerr
  • Grand Master of Music
  • Past Grand Master, Deputy Grand Master, Sub Grand Master & Grand Stewards
  • Grand Master Sir James W. Drummond

Having arrived at the enclosed area, halted took open order all the other Lodges in the rear following the like example so that the Grand Master and the other Office Bearers pass up the centre to the enclosed are where the stone was to be laid.

The Grand Master having taken his place on the platform supported by the other Grand Office Bearers the brethren of this Lodge along with the sister Lodges having taken up their positions on the platform in the west, the Sheriff Clergymen and Trustees on the platform in the south, and the ladies and gentlemen on the platform in the north, when the whole company were properly placed the music struck up the National Anthem and the Grand Chaplain offered up a beautiful prayer after which the Grand Master Wardens and other Grand Office Bearers proceeded to the side of the stone the Grand in the east when the Secretary and Treasurer deposited the two square bottles in their cavity with coins etc. after which the Brass Plate was screwed down and the stone lowered with 3 stops before it was laid on its bed the Grand Master then ordered the Wardens to apply different working tools of their office to the stone and having found all correct the Grand Master gave the stone three distinct knocks with the mallet saying may the Great Architect of the Universe be with this undertaking and may the work we have now happily begun be carried on to the advantage of all parties until such time as the cape stone be laid, the brethren gave three hearty cheers which was heartily responded to by the immense multitude assembled and the music struck up the Free Masons’ Anthem, the Grand Master then retired to the platform when he gave a splendid address and having thanked the sister Lodges for their kind assistance at the Ceremony also the Clergymen Trustees of Dalkeith and the gentlemen and fair ladies for their company on this occasion he then introduced Sir John McNeil, Parochial Board of Scotland, who stated it was now twenty years since he had the pleasure of meeting with his brethren of the Crage and as this was the first time he had the pleasure of addressing the united Parishes who were now commencing this work the building of a Poor House in his official capacity he then took review of the Scottish Poor Law and the benefits that would be secured to the poor by an institution such as we have met for the purpose of laying the foundation stone.

Rev. Dr. McLeod then offered up a prayer and the Rev. Mr Boyle gave benediction where the procession was reformed and returned to the Cross Keys Inn where about 1 50 of the brethren sat down to denner. Sir James W. Drummond presiding as soon as the brethren were served with provisions the Grand Master gave loyal and Masonic toasts which were received with all respect and honour, after drinking to the sister Lodges present and giving as many songs, toasts,, etc. as the time would permit. The Grand Master closed the Grand Provincial Lodge of East Lothian at ten o’clock p.m. The evening having been spent in a manner highly gratifying to the brethren, and thus dosed a day which will long be memorial in the annals of the Dalkeith Kilwinning Lodge.


James W Drummond, R.W.M

Daniel Urquhart, Secretary


Thus is recorded a very important day in the history of Dalkeith Kilwinning Lodge.

I might add that the scaffolding was to hold eight hundred people. Tickets for the scaffold were priced at 6d (21/2 new pence) and to take part in the procession one shilling (5 new pence).

Finally James Thomson, the youngest Operative, joined the Lodge on the morning of the procession.

I must add in passing that the Rev. Norman McLeod of the Parish Church is the same brother who wrote “Courage Brother Do Not Stumble’. This hymn was written while he was Minister in Dalkeith 1843-51 and the Grand Chaplain Rev. Dr. Norman McLeod was his father who was Moderator in 1836 (changed days).