Lincoln Lodge No. 34
This lodge is named after Abraham Lincoln, President of the United States. Lincoln was not a Mason, but there are several interesting Masonic references to him. In 1860, Robert Morris called on Lincoln and in the course of their conversation Morris referred to the fact that all of Lincoln's opponents for president were Freemasons. Lincoln replied, "I am not a Freemason, Dr. Morris, though I have a great respect for the institution." When Lincoln died, one Lodge held a lodge of sorrow for him in the mistaken belief that he was a Mason.
Lincoln Lodge started out as Lincoln Lodge No 382 under the Gran Oriente Espariol. It was organized in Barrio Olongapo, Subic, Zambales (now Olongapo City) in February 1916 by 17 members of Bagong Buhay Lodge No. 191 who at that time were residents of the barrio. On April 10,1916, it was provisionally admitted into the Federation of the Gran Oriente Espanol and on September 6 of the same year was definitively constituted. Its first principal officers were: Domingo Garcia, Venerable Master; Domingo Manipis, First Vigilant ; and Isabelo Espiritu, Second Vigilant.
Barely a few months after its constitution, a unification of Philippine Masonry took place. Lincoln Lodge, along with several other Filipino lodges, transferred allegiance to the Grand Lodge of the Philippine Islands. It was given a new charter as Lodge No. 34 and was constituted on February 14, 1917 as a lodge under the Grand Lodge of the Philippine Islands.
The first meetings of the lodge were held in a rented building located at #304 Harris Street, Olongapo. In 1923, the members bought a bigger building which was also located on Harris Street. It was rebuilt into a Masonic Temple, complete with furniture and new paraphernalia. Unfortunately, after 8 years of use, the building was burned and all lodge documents were reduced to ashes. This misfortune did not deter the members from carrying on with their Masonic labors. Returning temporarily to their rented building, they subsequently reconstructed the burned edifice and by April 26, 1933, a new Masonic building was again ready for occupancy.
In 1924, the members of the lodge organized a "Fraternidad de Mujeres" for their ladies. This organization brought about a closer relationship between the families of the member.
At the outbreak of the Second World War on December 7, 1941, the Temple of Lincoln Lodge was completely destroyed. For four years during the Japanese occupation the lodge could not meet. But the members were undaunted. As soon as the War ended, they reorganized the lodge. With the help of Masons in the American liberation army they constructed a building for their meetings on a lot located just outside the first U.S. Naval Operating Base Main Gate. On May 30, 1945, the members elected their first set of post-war officers. In 1950, however, the lodge had to move out because of the expansion of the US Naval Facility. Given another lot, the members constructed another temple with the help of brothers from the US Naval Construction Battalion and with funds generously donated by affluent brethren. By 1960, the lodge had an air-conditioned temple.
Since 1950, Lincoln Lodge has been sponsoring Troop No. 5 of the Boy Scouts of the Philippines; the Teodoro R. Yangco Chapter, Order of DeMalay; and Bethel No. 1, International Order of Job's Daughters, Rebecca Parrish Chapter of the Order of the Eastern Star and the Western Luzon Bodies, AASR.
On June 15, 1991, the lodge Temple was heavily damaged by the eruption of Mt. Pinatubo. The entire roof of the main hall collapsed to the floor which forced a lessor to move to another location. Through the contributions of some members, a temporary roof was built to preserve the flooring of the lodge. The partitions of the Scottish Rite, the Eastern Star, Jobs Daughter and DeMolay were removed to provide space for a lodge hall. This is where the lodge is presently holding its meetings.
Location: Olongapo City