Here is an interesting note fromFreemasonry in Canada before 1750by Reginald V. Harris:
 
PLACENTIA

Mention should be made here of the beginnings of Freemasonry in Newfoundland. As already stated, Placentia in Newfoundland, was garrisoned during this period by part of Philipps' (40th) Regiment.

In the Massachusetts records we find that "At the Petition of sundry Brethren Residing at -------------- in Newfoundland" the Grand Master of Massachusetts, Thos. Oxnard "Granted a Constitution for a Lodge to be held there," Dec. 24th, 1746, The Lodge appears in the St. John's (Boston) Grand Lodge records for the next 21 years, as "not represented" at meetings of Grand Lodge. On July 25, 1766, a second lodge appeared on the lists as "St. John's, Newfoundland, Lodge." It would appear most probable that the first-named lodge was at Placentia, where part of the 40th Regiment was in garrison.