[graphic] Raleigh: A Capital City: A National Register of Historic Places Travel Itinerary [graphic] National Park Service Arrowhead and link to NPS.gov
 [graphic] Link to Raleigh Home  [graphic] Link to List of Sites  [graphic] Link to Maps  [graphic] Link to Essays  [graphic] Link to Learn More  [graphic] Link to Itineraries Home Page  [graphic] Link to NR Home
 [graphic] Property title
 [graphic] Next Site
 [graphic] Previous Site

Masonic Temple Building
Photo by Michael Zirkle Photography, courtesy of Raleigh Historic Development Commission
The Masonic Temple Building was the first reinforced concrete skyscraper erected in the state of North Carolina. Built from 1907 to 1909, it represents Raleigh’s growth in the early years of the 20th century, as well as the rise of the Masons as an important fraternal organization. Designed by South Carolina architect Charles McMillan, the building was hailed upon completion for its innovative construction. The use of reinforced concrete was then a new concept in building materials, combining relative low cost, fireproofing abilities and malleability. Architecturally, the seven-story building is a conservative, classicized example of the tri-partite skyscraper composition developed by Louis Sullivan, which emulates the three elements of a classical column: base, shaft and capital. The building is faced in Indiana limestone up to the third floor, with light brick used for the rest of the building, and ornamented with terracotta.

[photo] Historic view of the Masonic Temple
Photo from National Register collection

Raleigh’s first Masonic lodge was organized in 1794, two years after the city’s founding. The organization’s first meeting hall was dedicated in 1813. In the 1880s, a movement was begun to raise funds for the construction of a new temple, but this effort was not realized until the early 1900s. The new building was used both by local lodges and the state Grand Lodge. Storefronts occupied the first floor, with upper-floor office space rented to insurance companies, doctors, lawyers and businessmen. Eventually, growing membership, lack of parking and the desire for greater autonomy by the local lodges led to the sale of the building and the relocation of the Raleigh Masons to the former Josephus Daniels House in 1951. The downtown building continues to provide commercial and office space. While its Romanesque storefront level was clad in steel and glass in 1948, a 1979 remodeling effort reversed most of the changes and restored the windows’ distinctive arched forms.

The Masonic Temple Building is a designated Raleigh Historic Landmark.

The Masonic Temple Building is located at 133-135 Fayetteville Street. Ground floor tenants and upper floor offices are open during regular working hours.

 [graphic] Early History Essay  [graphic] Suburbanization Essay  [graphic] Preservation Essay
 [graphic] African American Essay
 [graphic] Modernism Essay

Raleigh Home | List of Sites | Maps| Learn More | Itineraries | NR Home | Next Site
Essays: Early History | African American History| Suburbanization| Modernism | Preservation

Comments or Questions