Scottish Rite California
Who Was Ill. Bro. Frederick Dalcho? 1770 - 1817 By: McDonald “Don" Burbidge, 33 o
     No one…could have been more honestly devoted to the studies in general, of the Christian Ministry, than Rev. Frederick Dalcho or have been found more willing so as to surrender himself to it, as “to spend and be spent” in it’s work… In this office he served with great faithfulness to his church.      In the character of his preaching, there was a striking adherence to “the old paths” of truth; and the essential doctrines of the gospel, as held in the Church of whom he was a Minister, was his fond and constant theme. Affectionate, earnest, solemn, in exhortation and admonition, which were his duty, he always observed the sobriety of a sound mind and a sound faith. He was unusually well versed in the Scriptures, and had read extensively the writings of most of the Divines of the Parent Church. He was familiar with polemic theology, but not fond of controversies.      All text shown in “Italic” was written by Ill. Bro. Frederick Dalcho. This was done to provide the reader a way of getting to know him through his writings. 1770      October - Frederick Dalcho was born to John Frederick and Euphemia Dalcho in the Borough of Holborn, London, in a parish known as St. Giles-In-The-Fields. 1779      On August 26 - Frederick Dalcho father passed away at the Age of 58. 1787      May 23 - Frederick Dalcho arrived at Baltimore, Maryland on a sailing vessel “after a boisterous passage of 8 weeks on the sea from London.” He was 15 years of age and went to live with his father’s sister who was married to Dr. Wiesenthal. Under the guidance of Dr. Wiesenthal young Frederick pursued his education. 1790      Dr. Dalcho received his medical degree from his Uncle Wiesenthal’s Medical School. His Uncle was also a Mason. 1792      April 9th - Frederick Dalcho was appointed a “Surgeon’s Mate” in the Army. While stationed in Savannah, Georgia Dr. Dalcho joined a Masonic Lodge believed to be Hyram Lodge No. 2, Ancient York Mason. 1794      April 17th - Dr. Dalcho married Miss Vanderlocht of Savannah, Georgia. The marriage was of brief duration as she died on June 4, 1795.        May 2nd - Dr. Dalcho was appointed a Lieutenant of Artillery in the Army.      May 10th - Dr. Dalcho was transferred to Fort Fidius located in Georgia on the Oconee River. 1796      Dr. Dalcho was transferred from Savannah; Georgia to Fort Johnson located in the Charleston harbor.      Dr. Dalcho resigned his commission to become a ship’s surgeon to the factoring firm of McClure and Company and made several trips to Africa while in their employment. 1797      Dr. Dalcho returned to the Army for an additional 15 months service. 1799      Dr. Dalcho left the sea and settled down to practice medicine with his good friend Dr. Isaac Auld. 1800      Dr. Dalcho was a contributor to the “Medical Repository and the Recorder.”  1801      May 31 - Dr. Dalcho along with John Mitchell opened the first Supreme Council of the Scottish Rite in America at Shepheard’s Tavern located at the corner of Broad and Church Street in Charleston, South Carolina. Dr. Dalcho was elected to the office of Lt. Grand Commander and John Mitchell was elected Sov.  Grand Commander. It should also be noted that Dr. James Moultrie was elected as Sov Gr Inspector General who is also a member of St. Philip’s Church and is buried in the churchyard.      July 1 - Dr. Dalcho was elected as the 66th member of the Medical Society and opened a drug store facing the Bay, which he later moved to the northeast corners of Church and Tradd Street and operated with his long time friend Dr. Isaac Auld. 1802      Dr. Dalcho Volunteered to serve as attending physician of the new Charleston Dispensary for a term of one year. 1803       January 10th – Dr. Dalcho helps to established the “Charleston Courier” newspaper with Aaron S. Willington and Edmund Morford.            Dr. Dalcho wrote and delivered an “Oration” entitled; An Oration Delivered In The Sublime Grand Lodge Of South Carolina, In Charleston On the 21st of March, A. L. 5807      I have before mentioned to you, that in the sublime degrees of a Mason, we are bound to be true and faithful to the government of the country in which we live. Nay, more, we are sworn to discover to the lawful authority any knowledge which we may posses of the establishment of a conspiracy against it. 1805      September 2nd - Dr. Dalcho was elected to the standing committee to establish a Botanic Garden located at the northwest corner of Meeting and Columbus Streets. The Medical Society placed the following article in the locale newspaper announcing the opening of the Botanic Garden; in part it reads;      “Innumerable are the advantages which will result from this establishment. It will induce in young persons, a taste for the studies of Nature. “The structure of a feather or flower is more likely to impress their minds with a just notion of infinite power and wisdom, than the most profound discourses on such abstract subjects, as are beyond the limits of their capacity to comprehend.  Botany is a branch of natural history that possesses many advantages; it contributes to health of body, and cheerfulness of disposition, by presenting an inducement to take air and exercise----it is adapted to the simplest capacity, which renders it attainable to every rank in life.” Reference: Charleston Courier Date: August 8, 1805 1805      December 24th - Dr. Dalcho delivered the “Oration” before the Medical Society of South Carolina, at the Anniversary Meeting of which he was the Secretary. In his opening statement he commented that;      “Agreeable to the rules of our society, it is the duty of our president to nominate a member “to prepare and record, at each Anniversary, a review of the weather and diseases of the current year, together with such medical observations as may appear to him to be useful, and connected with the objects of the institution.” He has done me the Honor to nominate me for the present Anniversary.  I could have wished his choice to have fallen upon some person more worthy of this distinguished honor; upon one, whose capacious mind, illumined by the rays of science, could have rendered his subject more worthy of your attention; who could have recorded the medical occurrences of the passing year, in language suited to the dignity of his theme. Little accustomed to write upon medical subjects, I have only been induced to acquiesce in the nomination, by my sincere desire to contribute every talent which I posses, to the service of our society, and to the advancement of our profession. Before an audience so imposing I should stand abashed, did I not feel conscious of receiving your candid indulgence.”      December 25th – Dr. Edward Jenkins married Dr. Dalcho and Miss Mary Elizabeth Threadcraft at St. Philip’s Church. They were childless throughout their marriage. 1806      January 10th - Dr. Dalcho became co-editor of the Charleston Courier, a vigorous Federalist paper, then in its fourth year of publication. 1807      Dr. Dalcho published the “Ahiman Rezon or a book of Constitutions” at the request of the Grand Lodge of Ancient York Masons for the state of South Carolina. With the help of Dr. Dalcho the Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons and that of Ancient York Masons of South Carolina united under the name of “The Grand Lodge of Ancient Freemasons of South Carolina” which continues to exist to the present time.      John Fowler who was directed by the Original Chapter of Prince Masons of Ireland to write Dr. Frederick Dalcho and ask his permission to reprint his orations from 1801, 1803, and 1807. Dr. Dalcho replied on February 25, 1808, expressing his gratification at the request and readily acceding to it. 1808      December 21- Dr. Dalcho sent a response letter back to John Fowler who lived in Ireland at the time. At this time it seems that John Fowler wanted Dr. Dalcho to visit Ireland with the intent of establishing a Sovereign Grand Council of Inspectors General of the Thirty-third Degree for Ireland, to which Brother Dalcho kindly promised to accede, however because President Jefferson had stopped all trade with Europe as well as with Great Britain at this time Brother Dalcho was unable to assist in the creation of a Supreme Council for Ireland. 1809      Dr. Dalcho was elected “Corresponding Grand Secretary of the Grand Lodge of Ancient York Masons, and from that time directed the influences of his high position to the reconciliation of the Masonic difficulties in South Carolina. 1812      November 22, Dr. Frederick Dalcho mother dies at the age of 81; both of Dalcho’s parents are now buried at the German Evangelical Church of St. Marie-in-the-Savoy, London. 1813      Dr. Dalcho resigned as co-editor of the Charleston Courier and as a member of the Medical Society of South Carolina, which the Medical Society refused and made him an honorary member for life.      Dr. Frederick Dalcho accepted the call of the vestry of St. Paul’s, Stono, to officiate as Lay Reader without any compensation, as he was not yet ordained.” He began his service, which was to last only for the winter and spring season. It should also be stated that Dr. Frederick Dalcho was the first rector of this church since 1784. 1814      Rev. Dalcho kept St. Philip’s Church open after the death of Rev. James Dewar Simons for the summer. Written in the minutes of St. Philip’s Church record is the following report;      Special meeting of the Vestry of St. Philip’s, Friday 27th May 1814. The Rev. James Dewar Simons, Rector of this Church, having departed this life, between the hours of nine and ten o’clock this morning, the Vestry was called upon the Solemn and awful occasion. Resolved Unanimously, that in consideration of the long, able and eminent services of there many beloved and greatly lamented Rectors and Divine, and in testimony as well as sincere veneration and affection to his Person while living, as with deep and unfeigned sorrow and regret which is felt on the mournful event, the following honors be paid to his Memory.      The pulpit, the reading desk, the communion table and organ gallery to be hung with “Black Broad Cloth.” The vestry of St. Michael’s is requested to have the Bells of that church tolled muffled during the funeral procession.      That the Rev. Dalcho be requested to read the funeral service and the Rev. Doctor Percy to deliver a funeral oration on the melancholy occasion. 1817      Dr. Dalcho resigned from St. Paul’s Stono Church and on February 2, became assistant minister at St. Paul’s Radcliffeborough located in Charleston, South Carolina.      Dr. Dalcho publishes a book on the theological works titled; A Letter On Public Baptism As Established By “The Protestant Episcopal Church in the United States of America      This work was produced after some parish members asked Dr. Dalcho to perform a private Baptism in their home for their children. Due to the rules and regulations of the church he could not honor this request that was asked of him.  At the end of his letter Dr. Dalcho made the following statement in hopes that the individuals would understand why he had to turn down their request;      From this exposition of the Rubrics of the Church, and of the duties of the Clergy, I flatter myself, my Dear Sir, you will be satisfied that I have acted from a sense of duty in refusing to comply with your request. And I trust you will do me the justice to believe, that no other motive could have influenced me in the discharge of the Sacred Office, or have induced me to oppose the wishes of my friends.                                            I am, Dear Sir,                                                Yours, &c.      Rev. Dalcho undertook the task of completing and editing the register of the Church at St. Paul’s Radcliffeborough located at Charleston, South Carolina.      February 23rd - Dr. Dalcho was retained as an assistant minister for St. Michael’s Church.      October 8th - Rev. Dalcho was elected Assistant minister of St. Michael’s Church for one year at a salary of $1,000.00.
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