Class History

A Brief History

The first meeting to organize a Class of Instruction for the Bangor District was held on the 28th April 1944. To become a member was by invitation only, and you had to be proposed and seconded by members of the Class. The first class was held on Wednesday 4th October 1944 and the fee was 10 Shillings per person.

The following Brethren were present:

VW.Bro. W. R. Cooper     Belfast          W.Bro. H. J. Watterson      337

W.Bro. Devenney              Holywood      Bro.H.J.Watterson Jnr       337

W.Bro. J. Agnew Jnr         746                Bro. J. T. Hamilton              337

V.W.Bro. Sheenan            746                Bro. J. B. Ritchie                 337

Bro. W. C. Neill                  746                Bro. L. Mark                         337

Bro. J. L. Elliott                  746

Bro. H. C. Scott W.M         746                W.Bro. N. Cross W.M         284

Bro. H. G. Smith                 746                W.Bro. J. Smyth                  284

Bro. W. S. Price                 746                W.Bro. W. H. Robinson      284

W.Bro. G. Cairns               462                 Bro. R. Lawther                   170

W.Bro. W. J. McDowell     462                 Bro. G. W. Cauley              170

Bro. R. Hall                         462                 Bro. G. Bannish                   170

Bro. G. McCartney             564                 Bro. G. McClure                  286

Bro. J. Halliday                   430                 Bro. J. McQuoid                  486

Bro. F. Russell                   474                 Bro. J. W. Boyd                   284


Chairman                     W.M N. Cross             284

Secretary/Treasurer    W.Bro. J. W. Boyd     284

Class Leader               W.Bro. J. Smyth         284


Some Previous Class Members

James Smyth  joined the Bangor Class in Oct 1944

Right Worshipful Brother James Smyth of Lodge 284,  was the first  Class Leader, he was appointed Assistant Grand Secretary for the Grand Lodge of Instruction in 1953 and in 1976-1978 he was elected Grand Secretary for the Grand Lodge of Instruction.

Richard E. Gray joined the Bangor Class in Oct 1946

Right Worshipful Brother Richard E. (Reg) Gray of Bangor Union Masonic Lodge 746 joined the Class in October 1946. He was an active member of the Bangor Class until his passing away. Right Worshipful Brother Gray became Provincial Grand Master of Down in 1986-1991. He later became a member of the Supreme Council of Ancient Accepted Rite for Ireland and received the 33rd Degree.

James E. McKeag joined the Bangor Class in Oct 1952

Right Worshipful Brother James E. McKeag joined the Class in October 1952. He became Deputy leader of the Bangor Class in 1957 and shared joint leadership of the class with Right Worshipful Brother James Smyth from 1964. He was class leader until 1991. Right Worshipful Brother McKeag  was elected Assistant Grand Secretary for The Grand Lodge of Instruction from 1988 until his death in December 2000. He was elected Provincial Deputy Grand Master of Down in 1991.