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A Short History of Chapman Lodge A.F. & A.M.
(Click on any picture for a larger view)

Chapman Lodge No. 95 held its first meeting at Fort Union, in the Territory of New Mexico,
on March 28, 1862 under a dispensation from the Grand Lodge of Missouri.


The Lodge was named in honor of Lt. Col. William Chapman,
Commanding Officer of Ft. Union from June 13 to Dec 6, 1861.
He was born in Maryland and appointed to West Point from that state.
He graduated fifteenth in his class in 1831.
Col. Chapman died on December 17, 1887.
Chapman


Henry Allen was the first Worshipful Master
The other Officers were:
Frank Phelps Senior Warden
Chas. S. Hopkins Junior Warden
S.K. Hodges Secretary. Pro Temp
B.C. Leonard Treasurer
G.W. Cook Senior Deacon
M. Coffman Junior Deacon
L.C. Farnaghy Tyler


The first Petitioner was Milnor Rudulph,
His petition was read at the first communication (meeting). At the 2nd communication on April 3, 1862,
the petition was reported favorably by the committee, and the candidate was balloted for and duly elected.
He was then regularly initiated an Entered Apprentice Mason. A week later, April 10, 1862 he was examined
in the 1st Degree of Masonry and was duly Passed to the Honorable Degree of Fellow Craft Mason.
On May 1, 1862 Brother Rudulph was balloted for and duly elected to be Raised to the Sublime Degree of Master Mason.

Chapman Lodge No. 95 received its Charter from the Grand Lodge of Missouri on the 10th day of October 1866.

The Lodge held its last communication at Ft. Union on July 27, 1867.

The next communication of the Lodge was held in Las Vegas, NM, about 30 miles south of Fort Union, on the 14th of August 1867.


On December 21, 1867, a resolution was passed recommending the purchase of a lot
located on Main Street and a committee appointed to make arrangements for building
a Lodge Hall the following Spring. This building was, and is, still located at
500 West National Avenue (old Main Street) opposite the San Miguel County Court
House in Old Town Las Vegas. Dedication of this Hall was held on January 16, 1869.

In 1877 Chapman Lodge, Montezuma Lodge in Santa Fe, Aztec Lodge in Las Cruces and Union Lodge
(also started at Ft. Union) now in Wagon Mound,decided to create a Grand Lodge in New Mexico.
In August 1877, the Grand Lodge of New Mexico was formed and on August 7, 1877
Chapman Lodge No. 95 became Chapman Lodge No. 2 with a Charter from the Grand Lodge of New Mexico.

In 1884 the Lodge was moved to the Ward block at 400 Railroad Ave.
in East Las Vegas and remained there for 11 years.

On November 26, 1894 the cornerstone for a new Temple was laid at
518 Douglas Ave, East Las Vegas, N.M. by Past Grand Master Charles H. Sporleder.



On June 24, 1895 the Temple was dedicated.

Chapman Lodge was relocated to this building and has remained there ever sence.

It is the oldest Masonic Temple in New Mexico.



1912

2011

Chapman Lodge has had a long and interesting history. From its beginnings at Fort Union, its existence was a series of ups and downs, but amid all its trials and tribulations it has stood steadfastly to the principles of Freemasonry. The early history of Chapman Lodge was made by men of adventure and courage with a foresight endowed with the vision as to the possibilities of this great Western country of ours. Fort Union was the base of military operations for the great Southwest, and from this point originated the expansion of immigration and the establishment of towns and trading post which today are merely ghost towns of by gone days. Freemasonry became an institution, which has spread throughout the Territory and State of New Mexico. Freemasonry has indeed played a splendid part in the development of this Territory and State. In which Chapman Lodge has exercised an important roll.



In March 2012 Chapman Lodge celebrated its 150th anniversary.