Naval Lodge No. 4 was originally chartered as Washington Naval Lodge No. 41 by the Grand Lodge of Maryland in 1805. However, only six years later, it joined with five other lodges in the federal district to form the new Grand Lodge of Washington, DC, and was re-chartered as Naval Lodge No. 4. In the early 1800s the Navy Yard was one of the largest employers in the city and for nearly the next 100 years the Lodge was mainly composed of craftsmen and workers from the Navy Yard and the market nearby. In 1893, Naval Lodge bought the current location and began building its current building. Once the building was completed in 1894, it became a center of Masonic and community activity on Capitol Hill and Southeast Washington. Today it is the oldest Masonic building in the District that is still used for Masonic purposes.