Thistle Chapter No. 867
The Supreme Grand Royal Arch Chapter of Scotland
The Royal Arch degree is not native to Scotland, but seems to have been introduced from both Irish and English sources, often Military Lodges, towards the middle of the eighteenth century. The earliest reference to the degree is at Stirling in 1743. At its peak, in the 1960's, the Supreme Grand Royal Arch Chapter of Scotland had some 650 active Chapters, many of which subsequently left to form Supreme Grand Royal Arch Chapters of their own, as happened for example in Israel and New South Wales. There are, currently, some 470 active Chapters, 220 of which are overseas.
Thistle Chapter No. 867 currently meets quarterly for information on meetings please email John Anderson.
Thistle 867 Tri Arch Meeting on a candidate
Monday 27th March 2023.
"Stewarton" Chapter No. 252. E.G. No. 7 and "Thistle" Chapter No. 867.
Today there exists in the Town an active Royal Arch Chapter by the name of Thistle Royal Arch Chapter No.867 on the Roll of The Supreme Grand Royal Arch Chapter of Scotland. It was Consecrated on March 9th, 1990, by a Deputation from Supreme Grand Chapter headed by the First Grand Principal, Most Excellent Companion the Earl of Elgin and Kincardine.
This is not the first time that Stewarton has had such a Masonic Body, as there was a Royal Arch Chapter called "Stewarton" Chapter, No.45, which had been granted its Charter sometime between 1807 and 1810 by the Early Grand Encampment of Ireland.
Apart from the fact that the Charter no longer exists, the reason for being unable to determine the exact date of issue is that Warrants (or Charters), numbering 36 - 45, were sent to Ayrshire to be completed as they were issued, were not returned to Ireland with the full facts for registration.
The Chapter became part of the Early Grand Encampment of Scotland when it was formed in 1826.
In March 1890 the Irish Warrant Numbers were dropped and the Chapters re-numbered resulting in "Stewarton" becoming No. 7.
The Supreme Grand Royal Arch Chapter of Scotland was formed in 1817 but it was not until May 11th, 1895 that all the independent Chapters had finally became united with that body. "Stewarton" Chapter was one of those last to join. On enrolling the Chapters were re-numbered and "'Stewarton" became No. 252 and as with all other Early Grand Chapters it was allowed to retain its Early Grand Number, therefore "Stewarton" Chapter was correctly numbered No.252, Early Grand No.7.
At the time of the re-union the Principal Officers were:-
1st Principal "Z" Companion John Cunningham, M.B.
2nd Principal "H" Companion Thomas Wylie
3rd Principal "J" Companion John Cassells
According to Supreme Grand Chapter the Stewarton Chapter ceased operating in 1896, was declared Dormant in March, 1909, and finally Erased from the Grand Roll in 1916.
It is hoped that Thistle Chapter No. 867 will continue to go from strength to strength and become firmly establIshed as part of Freemasonry both in Stewarton and in Ayrshire.
The Royal Arch degree is not native to Scotland, but seems to have been introduced from both Irish and English sources, often Military Lodges, towards the middle of the eighteenth century. The earliest reference to the degree is at Stirling in 1743.