Monday, April 19, 2010
The Yreka Masonic Hall Building
304 West Miner Street, Yreka, CA
Photo Copyright: Claudia East
Situated at the center of the historic district on Miner Street in Yreka is the Masonic Hall Building. This building was built in 1926 and was funded by Masonic Orders who sold shares at $50 each to finance the project. The lower level was originally drafted to house three different businesses and the rental of those spaces helped to fund the Masonic Order. The second story, or top floor was reserved for Lodge activities. A plaque on the front of the building explains that early on the Denny Bar Company (first chain store in California) operated here along with the Electric Company owned by Ernest Millbourn and for awhile the Klamath National Forest offices. In the 1933 City Directory Churchill-McDonald Builders and Hardware was listed at 300-302 West Miner, their phone number was #9. In the 1980s Cooley & Pollard Hardware purchased the downstairs portion of the building from the Masonic order and has operated at this location since the 1930s.
Prior to this building being constructed as early as 1880 there was a brick building at this location that housed Engine & House No. 1 the Yreka Fire Department. Adjacent to the fire house was another building that was home to offices. The area that the current building sits upon was once known as the Wetzel lot and the Whiting Building in earlier times.
For those of you that have a copy of our book, Yreka, from Arcadia Publishing Image of America Series you will find photos of the building taken in the late 1920s on page 38. You will also find photos of the building that was located at this spot prior to this "new" Masonic Lodge being built in 1926 on page 116. Additional photos of the interior of the earlier lodge can also be found on pages 112 and 113.
Information for this post was obtained from Archie Noonan's 1976 manuscript Yreka's West Miner Street Buildings, Blocks 200 - 300, 1851 - 1900; from information published on the historic marker sign at the building; references to old City Directories as well as from personal knowledge.
Copyright: Claudia A. East, 2010