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The Provincial Grand Masters

Masonic---PGL-Banner-NetherlandsAccording to Bate (the author of “The Lodge de Goede Hoop”), it appears that the first attempt at the establishment of a Netherlandic Provincial Grand Lodge was made by the Deputy Grand Master National of the Grand Lodge of the Netherlands, Sir Johannes Truter, during 1828 when the English Constitution formed a District Grand Lodge in Cape Town. At that stage there were two Netherlandic Lodges in South Africa, namely Lodge de Goede Hoop and Lodge de Goede Trouw, which were both in Cape Town. During 1834 the third Netherlandic Lodge, namely Lodge de Vereeniging was established in Graaff-Reinet. During 1838 Sir Johannes Truter provisionally constituted a Provincial Grand Lodge in Cape Town and invested its officers with himself as the Provincial Grand Master. When he died in 1845 his deputy, Michiel van Breda, assumed the positions of Acting Deputy Grand Master and Provincial Grand Master. According to Cooper (the author of the “The Freemasons of South Africa”), Sir Christoffel Brand disbanded the Provincial Grand Lodge when he was appointed the Deputy Grand Master National in 1847 and it was only during 1863 that he requested permission from the Grand Lodge of the Netherlands to re-establish a Provincial Grand Lodge to assist him with the administration and control of the Netherlandic Lodges operating in South Africa. Permission was duly granted and he formally constituted the Provincial Grand Lodge of Southern Africa on 31 May 1863.

Brand duly appointed and installed Oloff John Truter, a son of Sir Johannes Truter, as the first Provincial Grand Master in the de Goede Hoop temple. Truter had been initiated in Lodge de Goede Hoop during 1816 and served as its Presiding Master during 1855. His title was initially Chairman but in 1866 it was changed to President and it was only after his death in 1867 that it was changed to Provincial Grand Master. The Provincial Grand Master was then styled as Right Worshipful Brother and all the other officers of the Provincial Grand Lodge were styled as Very Worshipful Brother.

 The first officers of the Provincial Grand Lodge were :

Chairman (PGM)
Senior Warden
Junior Warden
Orator
Secretary
Treasurer
Ambassador
Master of Ceremonies
OJ Truter – Lodge de Goede Hoop
PA Brand – Lodge de Goede Hoop
B van der Sandt de Villiers – Lodge de Goede Trouw
JH Redlinghuys – Lodge de Goede Hoop
M de Vries – Lodge de Goede Trouw
JA Truter – Lodge de Goede Hoop
L Goldman – Lodge de Goede Trouw
PG van der Byl – Lodge de Goede Hoop

During this period the following Lodges were established by Brand (with  the assistance of Truter) under this Provincial Grand Lodge, namely Lodge Unie in Bloemfontein, Lodge Flaming Star in Potchefstroom, Lodge St Jan in Malmesbury and Lodge Oranje in Paarl.

Dirk Gysbert van Breda, a son of Michiel van Breda and a member of Lodge de Goede Hoop was appointed as Provincial Grand Master in 1867, a position he held until 1871. During this period Lodge Aurora in Pretoria and Lodge Morgenster in Kroonstad were established.

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Baron de Villiers

John Henry de Villiers was initiated in Lodge de Goede Hoop. He was an Advocate, a politician and later a judge. He was knighted as Sir Henry de Villiers and was subsequently awarded the title of Lord de Villiers of Wynberg when he was appointed the Chief Justice. Although he never held an office in Lodge de Goede Hoop, he was appointed as Provincial Grand Master in 1871 for a period of one year. The Centenary festival of Lodge de Goede Hoop was held on 1 November 1872 and was attended by more than 200 brethren, among whom were Sir Christoffel Brand (Deputy Grand Master National), Sir Henry de Villiers (Provincial Grand Master), Sir Richard Southey (District Grand Master – EC), Sir Thomas Maclear (Deputy DGM – EC) and the Presiding Masters of Lodge de Goede Trouw, the Hope Lodge, the British Lodge and of Lodges St Jan, Joppa and Oranje.

Andries George Hendrik Bosenburg was a medical doctor and was initiated in Lodge de Goede Hoop and appointed as Provincial Grand Master in 1872, a position he held until 1878. During this period he was installed as the Presiding Master of Lodge de Goede Hoop by the Deputy Grand Master and the following Lodges were established under this Provincial Grand Lodge, namely Lodge La Belle Alliance in Swellendam, Lodge Peace and Harmony in Kimberley and Lodge Orange in Rustenberg.

Andries Stockenstroom was the younger son of Sir Andries Stockenstroom. He was an Advocate and was initiated in Lodge de Goede Hoop. He later became a Judge and was appointed as Provincial Grand Master during 1878, a position he held until 1881. During this period Lodge Frere was established in Riversdale.

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Rev David Faure

Rev David Petrus Faure was a Dutch Reformed minister and was initiated in Lodge de Goede Hoop and held the office of Orator from 1870 to 1877. In 1881 he was elected as the Presiding Master and, in the same year, he was appointed as Provincial Grand Master, a position he held until 1892. During this period the Provincial Grand Lodge recommended that Lodge de Goede Hoop establish the Masonic Education Fund of South Africa, which was duly formed in 1887 with the assistance the English and Scottish Constitutions and which still exists. The following Lodges were also established under this Provincial Grand Lodge, namely Lodge Star of Africa in Jagersfontein, Lodge Star of the Rand in Johannesburg, Lodge Libertas in Krugersdorp, Lodge de Broederband in Pretoria and Lodge Unity in Winburg.

Barend Wethmar was a member and a Past Master of Lodge St Jan in Malmesbury. He was appointed as Provincial Grand Master in 1892, a position he held until his death in 1895. He had the singular honour of installing Rev Faure as the Deputy Grand Master National on 27 April 1893, the same day that the de Goede Hoop temple was officially re–opened after much of its interior had been destroyed in a fire during 1892. Nearly 600 brethren were present at this ceremony. During this period Lodge Prins Frederik was established in Johannesburg.

Charles Edward Lewis was initiated in Lodge de Goede Hoop and served as its Presiding Master in 1894. He was a Professor at the South African College and it was during his mastership that the Lodge decided to replace the four statues in the temple that had been destroyed in the fire, which were then dedicated to the memory of the late Jan Hendrik Hofmeyer. He was appointed as Provincial Grand Master in 1895 following the death of Barend Wethmar, a position he held until 1897. During 1897 he performed the ceremony constituting the first Irish Lodge in Cape Town, namely St Patrick’s Lodge in the de Goede Hoop temple. During this period Lodge Kaiser Friedrich was established in Johannesburg.

Osborn Hambrook Bate was initiated in the Octahedron Lodge (EC) in Barkly West and joined various other Lodges during his career at the Standard Bank as he was transferred from town to town. In 1891 he was transferred to Malmesbury where he joined Lodge St Jan as there was no English Constitution Lodge in the town and he served in various offices including as its Presiding Master. In 1897 he was appointed as Provincial Grand Master, a position he held until 1902 when he was transferred to Grahamstown. On returning to Cape Town in 1905, he was again appointed Provincial Grand Master in 1907, a position which he held until 1913. During this period the following Lodges were established under this Provincial Grand Lodge, namely Lodge Caledonia in Caledon, Lodge Diamand in Koffiefontein, Lodges de Goede Verwachting and Marina in Cape Town and Lodge Camdeboo in Aberdeen.

Oscar Dalton Douallier was initiated in Lodge de Goede Trouw. He was also a member and a Past Master of Lodge de Goede Hoop. He was appointed as Provincial Grand Master in 1902, a position he held for only one year.

Adriaan Jacobus Theophilus Roux was a medical doctor and the son of Bro AJ Roux who presented Lodge de Goede Hoop with the chairs for the Presiding Master and the Wardens during 1899 and which are still in use today. He was appointed as Provincial Grand Master in 1903, a position he held until 1907. During this period the name of this Provincial Grand Lodge was amended by the inclusion of the words (except Transvaal) due to the formation of the Provincial Grand Lodge of the Transvaal in 1906.

Edward John Moore was initiated in Lodge de Goede Trouw. He was also a member and a Past Master of Lodge Marina and Lodge de Goede Hoop. He was appointed as Provincial Grand Master in 1913, a position he held until his death in 1920. During this period the Board of Provincial Grand Officers resolved that a Brother who had not passed the Chair of a Lodge was not entitled to wear the levels on the apron of that Lodge, unless the Lodge had conferred upon him (by reason of his having been the Master of another Lodge) the rank of Honorary Past Master. During 1919 a United Masonic Thanksgiving Service was held in the City Hall to commemorate the end of the First World War and for the restoration of peace in the World. It was attended by a large number of Freemasons in full regalia and an equally large number of the general public.

David Pieter Marais was a medical doctor and a member of Lodge Marina and served as its Presiding Master in 1914. He was appointed as Provincial Grand Master in 1920, a position he held until 1926. On 2 May 1922 the Sesquicentennial Festival was held in the de Goede Hoop temple to celebrate Lodge de Goede Hoop’s 150th anniversary. RW Bro Charles Lewis composed the prayers, Bro Fred Silberbauer wrote special verses, glorias and a hymn for the occasion and Bro Colin Graham Botha gave an historical review of the Lodge. During this period Lodge Harmony in de Aar and Lodge Fidelity in Port Elizabeth were established. During 1925 the Irish Provincial Grand Master for County Down, RW Bro Sharman–Crawford, with the assistance of this Provincial Grand Lodge, constituted the Irish Provincial Grand Lodge of the Southern Cape Province in the de Goede Hoop temple.

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Morris Alexander

Morris Alexander was an Advocate and a parliamentarian for almost 40 years. He was appointed as Provincial Grand Master in 1926, a position he held until 1935. During this period the Provincial Grand Lodge gave official dispensation to candidates of the Jewish faith to select the attitude they desired to adopt when taking their obligations and the following Lodges were established, namely Lodge L’Agulhas in Bredasdorp, Settlers Lodge in Grahamstown, Lodge Bellville in Bellville, Lodge Westerford in Newlands, Lodge Jacob de Mist in Cape Town, Lodge Muizenberg in Wynberg and Lodge Matzikama in van Rhynsdorp. During 1932 the Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of the Netherlands, MW Bro van Tongeren visited South Africa and many of the Netherlandic Lodges. When Alexander died General Jan Smuts, the Prime Minister at the time, referred to him as one of the most distinguished men ever produced by public life in South Africa. Lodge Alexander was later named after him.

Alfred Stockdale Hooper was a member of Lodge de Goede Hoop and served as its Presiding Master during 1922. During 1935 he was appointed as Provincial Grand Master, a position he held until 1944. During this period Lodge Milton in Queenstown and Lodge Mutual in Cape Town were established and an inter constitutional organisation called the Masonic Fellowship was formed through a joint effort by all the Lodges in the Cape Peninsula to provide entertainment for the members of the armed forces. The Grand Lodge of the Netherlands was forced to close during 1940 when Germany invaded the Netherlands and the Grand Master, MW Bro van Tongeren (a Major–General in the Dutch army), was captured and interned in a concentration camp where he died. Notwithstanding this, the Netherlandic Lodges in South Africa continued to operate with the knowledge and consent of the United Grand Lodge of England and the Grand Lodges of Ireland and Scotland and in the firm belief that the Grand Lodge of the Netherlands would soon be reopened.

John George Rose was a member of Lodge de Goede Hoop and was appointed as Provincial Grand Master in 1944, a position he held for only two years. During 1945 the Grand Lodge of the Netherlands was re–opened at The Hague and Rose was appointed as the Deputy Grand Master for Southern Africa in 1946. He presented a new banner to Lodge de Goede Hoop to replace the old one which was worn out due to age, which banner is still in use today.

Walter James was a member of Lodge Marina and served as its Presiding Master in 1919. In 1946 he was appointed as Provincial Grand Master, a position he held until 1949. During this period Lodge Royal Protea in East London and Lodge Alexander in Cape Town were established.

Colin Graham Botha was initiated in Lodge de Goede Hoop and served as its Presiding Master in 1928. He retired as the Chief Archivist of the Union of South Africa in 1944 and was appointed as Provincial Grand Master in 1949, a position he held until 1957 when he succeeded Rose as the Deputy Grand Master. During this period the following Lodges were established under this Provincial Grand Lodge, namely Lodge Die Blou Diamant in Kimberley, Lodge St James in Cape Town, Lodges Johan van Riebeeck and Tygerberg in Bellville, Lodge Oranje Nassau in Cape Town, Lodge Bartholomeus Diaz in Port Elizabeth and Lodge Koup in Worcester.

Christiaan de Wet was appointed as Provincial Grand Master in 1957, a position he held until the formation of the Grand Lodge of South Africa in 1961. During this period Lodge Kaapstad in Cape Town and Lodge Sterkstroom in Sterkstroom were established under this Provincial Grand Lodge.

Masonic---PGL-BannerStanley Abbott Viollet was a member of Lodge Marina and was installed as its Presiding Master in 1946. He was appointed as the first Provincial Grand Master under the Grand Lodge of South Africa in 1961, a position he held until 1966. During this period Lodges Peninsula and Bergvliet in Wynberg and Lodge CJ Langenhoven in Bellville were established. He also appointed VW Bro Greeff, a member of Lodge de Vereeniging, as the Assistant Provincial Grand Master for the Cape Midlands. Viollet was awarded the OSM (Order of Service to Masonry) during 1986.

Phillip Albert Myburgh van der Spuy was initiated in Lodge de Goede Hoop and served as its Presiding Master in 1941. He founded Bergvliet High School and became its first principal in 1956. He was also a founder member of Lodge Bergvliet and its first Presiding Master. He was appointed as Provincial Grand Master in 1966, a position he held for two years during which period Lodge Simon van der Stel was established in Stellenbosch.

Herman Martinus Daleboudt was initiated in 1928 and at the time of his death in 1983, he had been a Freemason for 55 years and held over 40 Masonic degrees and 4 Academic degrees. He was appointed as Provincial Grand Master in 1968, a position he held until 1970. He also played an active part in building up the Voortrekker movement and was awarded the OSM in 1978.

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Morris Levin

Morris Levin was initiated in Lodge de Goede Verwachting in 1949 and served as its Presiding Master in 1956. He was appointed as Provincial Grand Secretary during the mid 1960s and as Provincial Grand Master in 1970, a position he held until 1974. During this period Lodge de Goede Hoop celebrated its Bi-Centenary and Lodge Zur Eintracht was re-opened in Cape Town. Lodge Hiram was established in Wynberg and Lodge Kramberg in Aliwal North. He was awarded the OSM during 1978 and was elected as the Grand First Principal of the Supreme Grand Chapter of the Royal Arch. He was awarded the MSA (Meritorious Service Award) in 1988 and presented with his 60 year long service jewel in 2009.

Andre van Niekerk was initiated in Lodge Dromedaris and served as its Presiding Master in 1965. In 1968 he was appointed as Assistant Provincial Grand Master in Natal. He was transferred to Cape Town in 1972 and he joined Lodge de Goede Hoop. In 1974 he was appointed as Provincial Grand Master, a position he held until 1978. During this period he was instrumental in establishing the Masonic Homes for Seniors benevolent project and he initiated and supervised the building of the Graham Botha Centre as the headquarters for this Provincial Grand Lodge. He later served as Provincial Grand Secretary for 10 years and was awarded the OSM in 1983 and the MSA in 1988. He was presented with his 50 year long service jewel in 2009.

Le Roux Hanke was initiated in Lodge Johan van Riebeeck and served as its Presiding Master in 1963. He was appointed as Provincial Grand Master in 1978, which position he held until 1985. He was awarded the OSM in 1996 and presented with his 50 year long service jewel in 2007.

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Okkie Louw

Hugo Amos (Okkie) Louw was initiated in Lodge Jacob de Mist and served as its Presiding Master in 1970. He was appointed as Provincial Grand Master in 1985, which position he held until 1989.

Heinz Emil Karl Selke was initiated in Lodge Zur Eintracht and served as its Presiding Master in 1983. He was appointed as Provincial Grand Master during 1989, which position he held until 1992.

Graham Stanley Karstens was initiated in Lodge de Goede Hoop and served as its Presiding Master in 1985 and in 2002. He was appointed as Provincial Grand Master in 1992, which position he held until 1995. He was subsequently appointed as an Assistant Grand Master.

Alfred George Rhoodie was initiated in Lodge de Goede Hoop and served as Presiding Master in 1986 and in 2001. He was appointed as Provincial Grand Master in 1995, which position he held until 1998. He was appointed as Grand Superintendent in 2002 and elected as the Grand First Principal in 2006, a position he held until 2009. He has served as the Provincial Grand Secretary for the past 11 years.

Petrus Hendrik Ferreira joined Lodge de Goede Hoop and served as its Presiding Master in 1987. He was appointed as Provincial Grand Master in 1998, which position he held until 2002. He was subsequently appointed as an Assistant Grand Master.

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Geoff Edwards

Geoffrey Robert Edwards was initiated in Lodge de Goede Hoop in 1987 and served as its Presiding Master in 1994 and 1995. He was appointed as Provincial Grand Master in 2002, which position he held until 2008, the last 2 years overlapping as an Assistant Grand Master. During 2009 he was appointed as Deputy Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of South Africa.

John Ewald Henry Smith was initiated in Lodge de Vereeniging in 1976. He joined Lodge de Goede Hoop in 1984 and served as its Presiding Master in 1990 and in 2006. He is the current Provincial Grand Master and was appointed as such in 2008.