Movers from B&L Lock and Safe in Houston met Worshipful Master Kenneth Welch and Master of Ceremony Toby Gonzales of the Alvin Masonic Lodge at the Dreyfus Printing building on Sealy Street on Friday with plans to remove and relocate a safe belonging to the Alvin Masonic Lodge that was left behind when the Masons moved to their current building in 1959, only to determine that the task would be impossible with the equipment they had at their disposal.
“I bet they didn’t take this thing up these stairs,” Tony Love of B&L Lock and Safe in Houston said, referring to the hollow wooden stairs in the section of the building that has gone unused and without renovation since the Masons moved 60 years ago.
Love theorized that the safe was likely moved into the building through a window or other opening using a crane. A large boarded up opening in the ceiling sized appropriately for the safe can be seen and Love said it was possible that the object was lowered inside through it. Dreyfus Printing owner Charles E. Dreyfus said the opening was a skylight.
Stair climbers often used to move heavy objects such as safes up and down stairs have a capacity of approximately 1,500 pounds.
“I’m almost positive that’s closer to 2,000 pounds,” Love said.
Similar to the method in which the safe may have been moved in, Love told members of the Masonic Lodge that modern removal of the safe would also likely require the service of a crane at an estimated cost of $2,500.
It is unknown when the safe, which is now unlocked and empty, was placed inside the building, but the space served as the meeting place for the Alvin Masonic Lodge between 1916 and 1959, when construction on the current lodge location was completed.
Despite disappointment, members of the Masonic Lodge said the safe will not be abandoned and they will be thinking of alternative ways to relocate the safe to its proper location at the current Masonic Lodge building.
“It’s going to get there,” Gonzales said.