855 Main Street
Masonic Temple Built 1904
Built by Nez Perce Lodge #10. The building was built as a combination opera house and Masonic Temple with a theater on the main floor, banquet room on the second floor and lodge meeting rooms, a library and smoking room on the third floor. Built at a cost of approximately $63,000, the Masonic Temple was an important part of Lewiston’s cultural life. Famous individuals such as vaudevillians Stan Laurel, Al Jolson and Harry Lauder, actor Charles Coburn, evangelist Aimee Semple McPherson appeared on its stage, and Roscoe “Fatty” Arbuckle was a regular performer at the theater. The famed silent epic King of Kings debuted in Lewiston at the Temple Theater, as did Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. Many people remember the regular schedule of boxing and wrestling matches. The main floor was put to commercial use in the 1940s.
Garden of Omar Cast February 1923
Garden of Omar Cast
Temple Baseball Team 1907
John Kennedy Dow, Architect of the Masonic Temple (born 1861, died 1961)
John Kennedy Dow Masonic Temple drawing
The Historic Preservation Commission would like to recognize and thank Dr. Steven Branting and the Nez Perce County Historical Society and Museum for the access to and contributions from their extensive archives for this project. Special thanks go to Commissioner Leah Boots for her countless hours of work to make this project a reality.
This project is supported in part by the Idaho State Historical Society.