Rocker Jack White is the mystery donor who paid off Detroit Masonic Temple's US$142,000 (NZD$177,000) tax bill and saved the historic Michigan building, according to local reports.

The payment was posted on May 30, just four days before hall bosses' June 3 deadline, according to the Detroit News.

And sources tell local radio network WXYZ that the former White Stripes star, who grew up in the city and now lives in Nashville, Tennessee, jumped into action when he heard the largest Masonic Temple in the world was in danger of foreclosure.

Reports suggest his mother was an usher at the venue and he has played several shows there.


Detroit Masonic Temple Association President Roger Sobran says: "Jack's donation could not have come at a better time and we are eternally grateful to him for it.

"Jack's magnanimous generosity and unflinching loyalty to this historic building and his Detroit roots is appreciated beyond words."

The temple's Cathedral Theater will be renamed the Jack White Theater in the rocker's honour.