In 1857 a petition for dispensation to form a lodge was signed by eleven Masons including R.W. Bro. Kivas Tully, V.W. Bro. Stedman B. Campbell, and V.W.Bro. Henry B. Bostwick, and eight Master Masons.
Kivas Tully is a name that looms large in the annals of Canadian Freemasonry. A prominent Toronto engineer and architect, Tully was a member of King Solomon’s Lodge (then #16, now #22) in Toronto, who was widely known and highly regarded by the Masons of the time. He was very active in the formation of the Grand Lodge of Canada in 1855. In 1857 he was District Deputy Grand Master of the Toronto District, which at that time ranged from the Credit River on the East to the Trent River on the West, and from Lake Ontario in the South it stretched all the way to Georgian Bay. He was a close friend and confidant of the Grand Master, William Mercer Wilson, who appointed him in 1857 to the Joint Committee to promote union between the newly formed Grand Lodge of Canada and the Antient Grand Lodge of Canada (which was the new name of the Provincial Grand Lodge of Canada West under Provincial Grand Master Sir Allan MacNab).
The petition was quickly granted, and Wilson Lodge (named after the Grand Master) No. 48 was consecrated by William Mercer Wilson on the feast day of St. John the Evangelist – December 28, 1857 with R.W.Bro. Kivas Tully as its first Worshipful Master.
On July 14th of 1859, Grand Lodge re-numbered the lodges to resolve duplicates created by the amalgamation with the Anicent Grand Lodge. Wilson lodge changed from #48 to #86 as part of this re-numbering.
For the first 40 years, Wilson Lodge met at the Masonic Temple at Church and Colborne Streets. In 1898 the lodge moved to the Temple Building on Bay Street (the Forresters building on the North West corner of Bay and Richmond Streets). In January 1918 it moved to the new Masonic Temple at 888 Yonge Street. When CTV purchased the Masonic Temple in 1998, Wilson Lodge relocated to York Temple at 1100 Millwood Road, where Lodge No. 86 (now Zetland Wilson Lodge) still meets today.