History of Rathfriland Masonic Hall.

The members of Lodge 80 had suffered great inconvenience as their Lodge room was only 16ft by 9ft, and the Ante Room (staircase and landing) 4ft by 3ft. A tenement belonging to Bro. Fegan of Lodge 80 became vacant and it was agreed that the premises would be taken and a Masonic Hall built on the site. The building work was carried out by Bro. Alex Whelan of Canal Street, Newry.

The hall was opened and dedicated to Freemasonry by representatives from Provincial Grand Lodge of Down in a solemn and impressive manor. V.W. Bro. Hunter Moore, P.J.G.W representing the Deputy Provincial Grand Master, and Right Worshipful Bro. Dr. Crossle, Provincial Grand Secretary, assisting as master of ceremonies. Bro Mills, organist, Banbridge, rendered several pieces of music on the harmonium during the dedication.

The entire ceremony was most efficiently performed by the several officers, after which R. W. Bro Crossle gave an eloquent address, which was listened to with earnest attention, and towards it's close, when he referred to Masonry and its Antiquity in the neighbourhood in Rathfriland, making special reference to the late lamented Bro. Benjamin Brown Meek, J.P., and his munificent acts of benevolence towards the Orphan School in Dublin, every eye glistened. His reference to some old members in and about Rathfriland, who had been dead for more than half a century, and who had reflected honour on the Brotherhood, was received with loud applause, and every brother present wondered how their Provincial Grand Secretary had gleaned such antiquarian lore.

A cordial vote of thanks to the lecturer brought this interesting part of the evening's proceedings to a close. Representatives were present from Lodges, 18, 23, and 77 (Newry), 119 and 336 (Banbridge), 155 Rathfriland, and 277 Dublin. Provincial Grand Lodge having been closed, the officers and members of Lodge No.80 took their positions, when some routine proceedings occupied them for a short time, after which all present adjourned for refreshments - John C Todd, W.M. presiding. The usual loyal and Masonic toasts followed. The toast of "Prosperity to Lodge 80" having been proposed by Bro. Crossle in an able speech, was suitably responded to by the W.M., who referred to the necessity of vacating the old and occupying the new premises.

6th Oct. 1896 –“The brethren of Masonic Lodge No. 155 were compelled to vacate the rooms in which they held their meetings in Dromore Street, Rathfriland, owing to the unsuitableness of the situation and want of space, etc. It was decided at a specially called meeting to consider the matter and it was decided to accept an invitation from Lodge 80 to hold their meetings in the Hall.