Despite its numerical ranking, Benjamin Franklin No. 83 is, in fact, a new lodge. Its predecessor, Concordia No. 83, was chartered by the Grand Lodge of Wisconsin in 1857. Concordia No. 83 was a German-speaking lodge that used a “French” Masonic ritual. In 1882, Concordia No. 83 surrendered its charter and jewels. Its remaining members transferred either to Madison Lodge No. 5 or Hiram Lodge No. 50. A group of predominantly Madison-area Masons, known as the Leather Apron Club, resurrected Concordia No. 83 in 2006. Grand Master Rodney Allen Paulsen granted their request for a dispensation on October 29. The lodge, however, was renamed “Benjamin Franklin” in honor of their symbolic patron. Benjamin Franklin No. 83 still retains some of its European flavor. The lodge works in the Emulation Rite, has limited membership, and endeavors to strictly observe Masonic tradition.