Games in the Lodge

By Midnight Freemason Contributor
WB Gregory J. Knott

At a recent estate sale in my hometown, I acquired some items that were from the former St. Joseph Knights of Pythias (KP) lodge. This lodge closed at least 35 years ago and I didn’t know much about it. But in researching local history over the years, I know that many of the prominent citizens in our town were members and that it was quite an active organization.

The items I acquired, were not priceless pieces of KP history, but they were various pieces from some games. A cribbage scoring blank, a couple of dominoes, an inkwell bottle and a shuffle board puck. Similarly, when members of Homer Lodge No. 199 were cleaning out the attic, we found playing cards, poker chips and other games.

Like the items I acquired from the KP lodge, the items we found in the attic have no real monetary value, but do provide a real insight into the activities within the lodge itself from days gone by.

Growing up, we played all kinds of board games, card games including euchre, dominoes, etc. Most of the hours playing, were with my grandparents and others of the World War 2 generation. It was a great way to connect with each other and spend time.

I can imagine the brethren of the KP lodge, Homer Masonic Lodge and countless others across the nation also spent time together playing these games. This of course, was a time before social media and many other distractions that we use to fill time today, in our modern society.

These brethren were growing their brotherhood, by spending time together, without the need of a meeting or ritual. Just an informal setting, probably in the dining room, engaging in fun, and conversation. Doesn’t it sound relaxing?

At a future meeting, I am going to suggest that we have a game night. We can bring our favorite board games, dominoes or just a deck of cards. Invite family and friends. What a great opportunity to introduce a potential new member to the lodge, have an activity with our family, and build the bonds of friendship closer with one another.

Want to play?


WB Gregory J. Knott is the Past Master of St. Joseph Lodge No. 970 in St. Joseph (IL) and a plural member of Ogden Lodge No. 754 (IL), Homer Lodge No. 199 (IL) and Naval Lodge No. 4 in Washington, DC. He’s a member of the Scottish Rite, the York Rite, Eastern Star and is the Charter Secretary of the Illini High Twelve Club No. 768 in Champaign-Urbana. He is also a member of ANSAR Shrine (IL) and the Eastern Illinois Council No. 356 Allied Masonic Degrees. Greg serves on the Board of Directors of The Masonic Society and is a member of the Scottish Rite Research Society and The Philathes Society. Greg is very involved in Boy Scouts—an Eagle Scout himself, he is a member of the National Association of Masonic Scouters. You can contact him at

1 comment:

  1. In my Mother Lodge, the Master and the Tiler played Cribbage for an hour before the meeting. Later, although the chair passed each year, that Master, now PM, continued to meet the tiler for cribbage.


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