The Masonic Temple in Salem, on the corner of Washington and Lynde Streets, was erected in 1915-1916 at a cost of $250,000. It occupies the site of the former Pickman-Derby mansion, built in 1764.
"A notable Salem landmark, this massive symmetrical five-story brick and artificial limestone edifice in the Colonial Revival style has a slightly projecting front central pavilion in which four fluted Corinthian columns rise from a triple-arch entrance base" according to Tolles in his book.
When first built, it housed retail stores, professional and business offices, and the Masonic lodge rooms and banquet hall.
The Masonic Temple was very active and also had a social club, the Temple Club that entered into the float contest for the Salem Tercentenary Parade.
On Feb. 22, 1982 an arsonist was arrested after starting two fires in one night, one in the Masonic Temple and another at the Armory. The early morning fire, which raged for 36 hours, lead to damage assessed at $250,000 for both structures. The National Guard Armory on Essex St. was destroyed and the Masonic Temple on Washington St. was heavily damaged.
- Postcard courtesy of CardCow.com
- Architecture in Salem by Bryant F. Tolles, p. 109
- 200 years of masonry in Essex Lodge : 1779-1979 Essex Lodge, 1979.
- Centennial anniversary of the introduction of masonry in Salem, by institution of Essex Lodge, together with exercises of commemoration, including an historical address, by Tracy P. Cheever, and other incidents, June 24, 1879 1880
- "State of emergency declared after three fires hit Salem" Salem Evening News, Feb. 22, 1982, p. 1-10