In a young Ontario the Loyal Orange Lodge was the province’s most powerful fraternal organization. At the turn of the last century, when the Loyal Orange Lodge was its peak, it is estimated that one in three Ontario males was affiliated with the Order.
They were militantly Protestant, Celtic, fanatically British and numbered Prime Ministers among their members. For nearly 160 years, the Orange Order maintained a strong Goderich presence.
On July 12, 1834, when Goderich had a population of nearly 100 people, 14 Orangemen gathered at the home of John Cox.
The small band marched to Captain John Longworth’s home who in turn, provided them with appropriate refreshments wrote local historian W E Elliott.
The following year, a warrant was issued for Goderich Lodge #145 on March 17, 1835 (St. Patrick’s Day) to James Elliott by the Grand Orange Lodge of British America and in December 1845, the lodge was re-designated #182 and later named Victoria Lodge.