Greenburgh’s Brotherly Love, Relief and Truth: A History of The Freemasons in Greenburgh

The motto of the Freemasons is “BROTHERLY LOVE, RELIEF AND TRUTH” accordingly; the Masons have always been committed to both intellectual discovery and public service. The Freemasons have had a distinguished history of public service in the United States: George Washington, Paul Revere, Benjamin Franklin, Rev. Jesse Jackson, Harry Truman, and George W. Bush were all Freemasons. The Freemasons have people from every race, religious creed, political affiliation, and geographic region of the country among their ranks.

There are three Masonic Lodges in Greenburgh: Diamond Thistle Lodge #555, Briarcliff Lodge #1155 and Solomon’s Lodge #196. Though the Diamond Thistle Lodge began in Greenburgh’s Village of Dobbs Ferry in 1865, Briarcliff Lodge began in 1902 in Briarcliff Manor and Solomon’s Lodge began in 1812 in White Plains, they are all currently located in The Village of Tarrytown in Greenburgh. Briarcliff Lodge #1155 officially moved to Tarrytown in 1933. The oldest masonic lodge in New York State, Solomon’s Lodge #196, which meets in The Vanderbilt Building in Tarrytown, has been proudly serving Greenburgh since 1821.

The Vanderbilt Building, the Headquarter of Solomon’s Lodge #196

One of its most prominent members even served as Greenburgh Town Clerk in the 1850s. His name was Nathaniel Holmes Odell (1828-1904).

Nathaniel Holmes Odell:  Freemason, Businessman, Greenburgh Town Clerk, New York State Assemblyman and U.S Congressman

His father was Johnathan Odell, the original owner of Greenburgh’s historic Odell House. In addition to serving as town clerk, Nathaniel Odell, ran a shipping business on the Hudson River. Later in 1857, he was elected to the New York State Assembly; he served as an Assemblyman until 1861. Then on March 4, 1875, he was elected to the U.S House of Representatives. He served in this capacity until March 3, 1877.

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