Courtesy of Lorraine Draper
This three-story, random coursed Sioux quartzite building was completed
in 1893 for $20,000 to house the Masonic Bodies Meeting Rooms. The
Masons used the building as their headquarters until 1917 when the
group moved to the Ferris Grand Block at 106
E. Main Street. The Masons existed as a fraternal organization that
served the needs of the community through its kinship network. The
rounded spheres located on the top corners represent the terrestrial
and celestial globes of the universe--one of the many lessons of
Masonry. The building also has a corbelled cornice with corner finials,
jasper beltcourses and jasper segmental arches and imposts accenting
the third-story window openings. A leading Pipestone citizen, J.
M. Poorbaugh, who at the time owned one of the stone quarries, oversaw
the stonework. In 1901, an outdoor stairway, which has since been
removed, was placed in the west front corner leading to the barber
shop and cigar factory located in the basement.
Historic sketch of Masonic Temple,
Courtesy of Pipestone County Historical Society
The Masons raised money to decorate and furnish their meeting rooms,
located on the third floor, which remained there until 1917. The
first floor was divided into two stores, with a hardware store located
in the east unit until 1945 and later moved to the west unit until
1977. Although the sizes of the first floor stores have been changed
several times, two stores have always occupied the building. The
third floor was used for the manufacture of ladies clothing, house
dresses and aprons for a short time during 1919 to 1920. The third
floor, although unused for many years retains its tin ceiling and
original room arrangement.
The Masonic Temple Building is located at 120-122 West Main
St., Pipestone. It is currently empty and not open to the public.