Current Location:
The Traveling Gavel is currently in the possession of Webster Lodge

HISTORY OF THE HARRY E. PLUMMER TRAVELING GAVEL

(As recounted by Rt. Wor. Charles W. Plummer)

The gavel was originally used in 1898 by Wor. Harry E. Plummer, Master of Ancient York Lodge #155 of Lisbon Falls, Maine. Through the years, the gavel was passed down the Plummer Family, first to his son Bro. Francis W. Plummer Sr. who then passed it to his son, Rt. Wor. Charles W. Plummer. All three generations of Plummer's were members of Ancient York.

The gavel remained the possession of the Plummer Family until 1982 when as a member of Ashlar Lodge #105 in Auburn (and District Deputy of the 23rd District) RW Charles Plummer presented the gavel at a meeting of the 23rd Masonic District Masters and Wardens Association to promote fellowship and camaraderie within the District.
The gavel was encased within a wooden and glass case (constructed by Mr. John Emery, a co-worker of RW Plummer) and a brass plate was attached for identification. That original case still houses the traveling gavel -see photo. The gavel Was first presented on May 25, 1982 to RW Nathaniel Green of Ashlar Lodge to have It available for capture at its first meeting in September. The gavel still promotes fellowship amongst the District to this very day.
Rules for capturing the gavel are found in the record book which accompanies the gavel and are listed as follows:
1. The traveling gavel will be known as the HARRY E PLUMMER TRAVEUNG GAVEL.
2. The gavel will circulate only within the 23" Masonic District and no lodge outside of the district may claim it.
3. In order for any lodge in the district to capture the gavel, it must have a minimum of five visiting brothers in attendance at a meeting of the lodge possessing the gavel.
4. The count of visiting brethren present for the purpose of determining whether a capture has been made will be taken just prior to the closing of lodge. Brethren present who leave early will not be included in the final count.
5. The lodge possessing the gavel must notify the other seven lodges in the district that it is in possession of the gavel and that it is available for capture. The lodge possessing the gavel will not be responsible for notifying the other lodges of specific meeting dates. Lodges desirous of capturing the gavel must assume the responsibility of obtaining this information.
6. If the number of visiting brethren from any one lodge exceeds five, the lodge with the highest number of visiting brethren present will capture the gavel.
7. In the event a brother holds dual or multiple memberships with other lodges in the 23,' district, this brother will be counted as one member present for each lodge he belongs to.
8. In the event of a tie, the lodge not having possessed the gavel at least once will be awarded the gavel.
9. In the event of a tie and neither lodge has possessed the gavel, it will be awarded to the oldest lodge in district.
10. In the event of a tie after all lodges have possessed the gavel at least once, the lodge not having possessed the gavel for the longest period of time, will be awarded the gavel.
11. A book to record captures will travel with the gavel and it will be the responsibility of the capturing lodge to record the date and location of capture and any other pertinent information that should be included.
12. The gavel will not be put up for capture at any District Meeting.
Note: these guidelines were adopted at a meeting of the 23rd Masonic District Masters and Wardens Association held at Cumberland Lodge #12 on October 26, 1982. Rule #7 was added to the original guidelines at a meeting of the 23rd Masonic District Association (formerly 23rd Masonic District Masters and Wardens Association) at a meeting held at Tranquil Lodge #29 on May 24, 1999.