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Beth-El District Grand Lodge #5


 Independent United Order of Mechanics




Beth-El Defined


Historical Notes


THE INDEPENDENT UNITED ORDER OF MECHANICS is founded upon the sacred principles of morality and Brotherhood adopted for mutual protection and spiritual well- being by the Mechanics who built king Solomon’s Temple in Jerusalem one thousand years before the birth of Christ. 

The Order in its present form was established in Lancashire, England, in  1757, and received its authority by Act of the British Parliament. A governing Council was formed, and was licensed under the Friendly Societies’ Act, with Supreme Power over all Branches of the Order throughout the world, and with the right of self-perpetuation.

It was not till the late Nineteenth Century, however, that the Order became widely Universal. In June, 1877, branches were established in South Africa, followed by other Branches in Jamaica, Demerara, Trinidad Cuba, Panama, Canada, Barbados, Grenada, Dutch Guiana, Dutch West Indies, Spanish Honduras, British Honduras and Guatemala.

The Order of Mechanics was introduced to British Guiana in the year 1892. The first Lodges was the Rose of the Summer Lodge was inaugurated in 1892. The First Worshipful Master was Rt. Wor. Bro. G.A. Hoyte and this was followed by the inauguration of Kind Edward Lodge in 1894.


On August 1, 2000, the Grand Council of the Independent United Order of  the Southern Hemisphere was incorporated under the Guyana laws. The founding members of the Executive Committee of the Grand Council were:


Donald A. Cruickshank

Most Worshipful Grand Master

Medford A. Phillips   Grand Deputy Master
Allan B. Chester    Grand Secretary
Keith Sealey     Grand Asst. Secretary
Estwick Leitch       Grand Recorder
Austin Mingo   Grand Treasurer
Hilton R. Haynes    Grand Life Member
Phillip C.Willian     Grand Life Member
Eric Teshmaker    Grand Senior Deacon
Patrick R. Clark 

Grand Junior Deacon

Peter P. Jones  Grand Tyler
Dennis Semple   Grand Inner Guard
Colin I. Europe    Grand Trustee
Joseph H. Hemphrey   

Grand Trustee

Oswald Phillips  Grand Trustee
Randolph A. Vaughn  Grand Auditor
Coen Ceasar      Grand Auditor
The Late Colin R. Smartt    Grand Steward
James Lewis      Grand Steward
Eustace Thomas  Grand Steward
Winick Bowlin   Grand Prelate



Brief Summary:


The Independent United Order of Mechanics (IUOM) formed in England in 1757 as a Friendly Society, a type of mutual benefit society that also served ceremonial and friendship purposes. Reportedly, a schism between two local English Masonic lodges spurred organizers to found the group. The Masonic Order at that time was not Prince Hall Grand Lodge because no Prince Hall Grand Lodge existed during that time.

In the 1800s, the Order spread to the United States, Central America, the Caribbean, the Netherlands, and Canada. The IUOM became established in the United States in its present form on January 3, 1910. Membership is open to men and women, boys and girls, of "high moral and ethical standards, who believe in "A Supreme Being" who rules and governs the Universe." Membership embraces all races, creeds and religions..

The group's motto is "Friendship, Truth and Love," suggesting some additional inspiration from the Odd Fellows. Members aim to practice and promote justice, philanthropy, charity and benevolence. They look after the welfare of their members and are active in their communities, particularly in healthcare and in education..