In 1921, members of Composite Lodge in the Sixth Manhattan Masonic District who were also members of the Clermont Club decided to open their own Lodge. These 26 Masons, dedicated Brethren, instituted Clermont Lodge No. 996. Of these founders, one just recently passed away. Brother Herman Abrahms, Master in 1929 had celebrated his 104th Birthday with the Brothers in Florida. The new Lodge elected Worshipful Joseph Reisner, a Past Master of
Composite Lodge as it’s first Master and later became the first Right Worshipful. His close friend, Henry Opper, was elected as the second Master of the Lodge and at the Fiftieth Anniversary celebration in 1972, their sons’, leaders in the Lodge were honored. Mortimer Opper was appointed District Deputy Grand Master of the Sixth Manhattan District and Stanley Reisner sat as Master. An active Lodge with excellent attendance, it reached its maximum membership in 1962 with 432 members.
In 1969, under the administration of Worshipful Leslie Rivlin, Clermont changed its meeting night to accommodate its new quarters, the Oak Room. The Lodge also took the adjoining room, 1910, for its social functions and to allow the ‘Ladies of Clermont’, to have their meetings at the same time. This group was also so successful that many of the women in the Sixth District joined this association.
One of our Masonic staples that continue to this date is the famous Clermont Community Chest (the C.C.C.), which is our Lodges’ sole and single annual appeal for all Masonic and outside charities, and our only source of funds for the Grand Lodge Brotherhood Fund, the Masonic Home and for our own relief fund, as well as many other charities. In earlier times, Brethren attending Lodge meetings could expect to be faced with appeals for one charity or another. In
1950, the then Master, W:. Mortimer Opper decided that a single drive under the name Clermont Community Chest would enable Brethren, by one donation, contribute to charity and end multiple appeals during the year, and this was an immediate success. It has thrived with only minor variations ever since. An outstanding member of the Lodge is named as Guest of Honor and a dinner is tendered in his honor. Well over $150,000 has been contributed through the years, including a complete new dental clinic to the Masonic Home.