Greetings Brothers and Seekers
Observance Lodge #686 meets regularly every Thursday at the Grand Lodge of Tennessee building (located on the corner of Broadway and 7th St.) in beautiful downtown Nashville, TN. We begin with informal fellowship at 5pm, dinner at 6pm, and masonic official business at 7pm.
Please refer to our “Calendar” tab for details regarding our upcoming events.
Observance welcomes you to join us for dinner and a tour of the lodge, even if you are not a Mason.
We are proud to express our “Southern hospitality” to all visitors and are happy to answer questions.
Interested in Freemasonry?
Freemasonry is the oldest fraternal society in the world.
The process to become a Freemason begins with exploratory visits to local lodges to find a group of masons with whom you relate most.
Once you have found the lodge that is right for you, and one that is logistically feasible for your regular attendance, you may ask for a petition for membership.
In order for your petition to be accepted, it must be signed by two active members of that lodge, who will formally recommend and vouch for you.
Therefore, you must get to know the members of the lodge before submitting a petition.
Hence, we strongly encourage visitors to join us for dinner and a lodge tour on Thursdays.
We hope to see you soon.
A Brief History of Observance Lodge
In 1915, a group of distinguished gentlemen had a meeting of the minds to embark upon a journey to form a new masonic lodge in Nashville, TN. In accordance to its objective to promote traditional masonic values, they decided it would be named Observance Lodge.
The 43 initial members of Observance Lodge first met on January 1st, 1916. Some of the founding members were newly made masons and others were prominent masons that maintained affiliations with their previous lodges. Soon thereafter, the Grand Master of the State of Tennessee formally accepted their petition and Observance Lodge was declared open for business “under strict supervision” on February 10th, 1916.
During this time, as a newly minted lodge, Observance Lodge #686 held their meetings at Cumberland Lodge #283. Unto this day, it is unclear whether the two lodges met together or if Observance purely shared Cumberland’s home. As customary amongst masonic lodges within the same district, it can be speculated that Cumberland offered Observance the use of its home when it was not in use by them.
A year later, Observance Lodge would no longer be called Observance Lodge. On February 28th, 1917, the Grand Master of the State of Tennessee officially granted our charter and we became forever known as Observance Lodge #686.
As the lodge continued to grow, it was time for Observance to find a permanent home. An arrangement was made with the Ancient & Accepted Scottish Rite Valley of Nashville in 1926, and Observance moved into the Scottish Rite Valley Cathedral, located downtown Nashville. Ten years later, in 1937, the Grand Lodge of Tennessee purchased the building and solidified Observance Lodge #686’s home on Broadway, where Observance has met on the third Thursday of each month ever since.