[West Face]:Monument Committee Members
Northeast of this spot stood the famous Sunbury Oak of early Colonial Masonic legend. The tree is said to have been of tremendous size and provided an ideal place for safe, comfortable campsites.
The legend of the Sunbury "Masonic" Oak is based on a tradition that has been passed down for generations from the earliest days of the Colony of Georgia. There is a strong belief that Georgia's first Masonic meeting was held under the protective branches of the great oak on February 21, 1734. It is believed that General James Edward Oglethorpe, himself, presided over the meeting, thus introducing freemasonry to Georgia. The lodge which traces its beginning to that important meeting was "The Lodge at Savannah in ye province of Georgia" now known as Solomon's Lodge No. 1, F. & A.M., the oldest continuously operating English constituted lodge in the western hemisphere.
Today the Lodge has in its possession a gavel made from the wood of the tree, which was given to it by the family of Sheftall in 1859. Although the original Sunbury Oak no longer exists, it retains a special place in the Masonic lore of Georgia.
To commemorate and maintain the tradition of the original meeting site of Solomon's Lodge No. 1, we have this day, February 24, 1990, planted another live oak, the state tree of Georgia. It is our fond hope that it too will reach the majestic proportions of its predecessor.
[List of Names]
Acacia Lodge No. 452
Ancient Landmark Lodge No. 231
Frank F. Baker Lodge No. 46
Clinton Lodge No. 54
Roger Lacey Lodge No. 722
Landrum Lodge No. 48
Solomon's Lodge No. 1
Thunderbolt Lodge No. 693
Richard T. Turner Lodge No. 116
Zerubbabel Lodge No. 15
Solomon's Lodge No. 1, F. & A.M. Savannah, Georgia
Solomon's Lodge No. 1, F. & A.M. was organized as a Masonic Lodge on February 21, 1734. Masonic tradition holds that its first worshipful master was General James Edward Oglethorpe, English soldier, statesman, humanitarian, and founder of Georgia, who raised the flag of England at Savannah on February 12, 1733.
Solomon's Lodge was chartered by the Grand Lodge of England in 1735, making it the second chartered lodge in the Americas, In 1786, the Independent Grand Lodge of Georgia, F. & A.M. was created and proclaimed by concerted action of Solomon's Lodge and the one other lodge then existing in the State. Solomon's Lodge No. 1 was chartered as the first lodge of Georgia.
From its beginning in 1734 Brethren of Solomon's Lodge have served with distinction in vital positions of leadership in public and fraternal affairs of city, colony, state and nation. The Lodge produced the first Grand Master of Georgia, F. & A.M., William Stephens, who governed the Georgia craft from 1786 - 1788 and 1793 - 1813.
Solomon's Lodge No. 1, F. & A.M., on of Savannah's greatest historical institutions is honored and revered by the Freemasons of this state as the Mother Lodge of Georgia, Free and Accepting Masons.
Dedicated with Masonic ceremonies February 24, 1990, commemorating the 256th anniversary of the first Masonic meeting in Georgia and the founding of Solomon's Lodge No. 1, F. & A.M.
William Wright Daniel,
Most Worshipful Grand Master of Masons in Georgia.
Steven Jackson Myhre,
Worshipful Master of Solomon's Lodge No. 1, F. & A.M. of Savannah, Georgia.