The Builder Magazine
January 1926 - Volume XII - Number
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Suggestion for the Collection of Masonic Data - BY BRO. J. HERON LEPPER,
Palestine in 1923 - By BRO. MAJOR JOHN W. SHUMAN, M. D., California
Interpretation of History - By BRO. ELMER MANTZ, New York
LANGUAGE OF THE RITUAL
WAYS OF WISDOM ARE BEAUTIFUL
Men Who Were Masons – Samuel Huntington – By Bro. George W. Baird, P.G.M.,
District of Columbia
TURHAND KIRTLAND FIRST MASTER OF THE FIRST MASONIC LODGE ON THE WESTERN
RESERVE - BY BRO. JAMES TYLER Ohio (Concluded from last month)
Collegia and Comacines - BY BROS. A. L. KRESS AND R. J. MEEKREN
CO‑OPERATION IN RESEARCH
Craft Symbolism - By BRO. R. J. Meekren
FREEMASONRY IN MANITOBA 1864-1925. By William Douglas, P.D.G.M., Manitoba
AND HISTORIC FREEMASONRY OF GEORGIA, 1733/4 - 1800. By William Bordley Clarke,
SYMBOLISM FOR ARTISTS, CREATIVE AND APPRECIATIVE. By Henry Turner Bailey and
QUESTION BOX and CORRESPONDENCE
NOT CALL IT "MASONIC CULTURE"?
CIRCLE OR STUDY CLUB
CHARLES CARROLL OF CARROLLTON
"SCOTTISH" AND "YORK"
WANTED AND FOR SALE
Suggestion for the Collection of Masonic Data
BRO. J. HERON LEPPER, Ireland
LEPPER, as most readers of The Builder are aware is a Past Master of Quatuor
Coronati Lodge No. 2076 E.C. He is also Past Superintendent of the Tabernacle
of the Supreme Royal Arch Chapter of Ireland. The present article was his
inaugural address at his installation in 1919 as Master of the Lodge of
Research No. 200 under the jurisdiction of the Grand Lodge of Ireland. The
suggested method of building up a mass of classified information accessible to
Masonic students seemed so applicable to the circumstances and uses of the
National Masonic Research Society that we have obtained permission to
reproduce it here. We have to thank the officers and members of the Lodge of
Research for their courtesy in granting this request and also Bro. Lepper
himself, who most kindly acted as intermediary in obtaining it.
time at my disposal tonight is extremely short, I will indicate in the fewest
possible words a way in which, as it seems to me, each member of Lodge 200
could help the progress of Masonic Research, the main object wherewith our
lodge was founded.
Fortunately my scheme does not need much explanation. It is this: that every
one of us who in the course of his reading comes across any passage in any
book which has a possible bearing upon a Masonic matter should copy out this
passage and send it to the Secretary of Lodge 200 to be filed. Such extracts
taken singly in themselves may not seem very important or add much to our
knowledge, but I have no doubt but that in process of time they would prove
very valuable to students in the aggregate.
indicate a few of the sources whence they may be gathered, and give you a few
examples of the kind I mean taken from my own note-books, and originally
copied from many different sorts of books and manuscripts. To take one part of
the field--books of travel and exploration are full of unrecorded material. My
first instance is taken from Layard's Nineveh and Babylon, published in 1853:
Sidonians and other inhabitants of the Phoenician coast were the most renowned
workers in metal of the ancient world and their intermediate position between
the two great nations by which they were alternately invaded and subdued, may
have been the cause of the existence of a mixed art among them. In the Homeric
Poems they are frequently mentioned as the artificers who fashioned the
embossed cups and bowls . . . Homer particularly mentions Sidonian goblets as
used at the funeral games of Patroclus." (Op. cit. page 192.)
cull another example at random from books of travel, take the following from
Sir Richard Burton's account of his journeys among the Mormons, where, by the
way, he gives a most interesting account of the signs whereby the different
tribes of Indians recognize each other:
Little (a prominent Mormon) also recounted to us his experiences among the
Indians, whom he, like all the Mormons, firmly believed to be the Children of
Israel under a cloud. He compared the Medicine Lodge to a Masonic Hall and
declared that the so-called Red Men had signs and grips like ourselves: and he
related how an old chief, when certain symbolic actions were made to him, wept
and wailed, thinking how he and his had neglected their observances. The
Saints (Mormons) were at one time good Masons; unhappily they wanted to be
better. The angel of the Lord brought to Mr. Joseph Smith (the founder of
Mormonism) the last key-words of several degrees, which caused him when he
appeared among the brotherhood of Illinois to 'work right ahead' of the
highest, and to show them their ignorance of the greatest truths and benefits
of Masonry. The natural result was that their diploma was taken from them by
the Grand Lodge, and they are not admitted to a Gentile gathering. Now
heathens without the gate, they still cling to their heresy, and declare that
other Masonry is, like the Christian faith founded upon truth, and originally
of the eternal Church, but fallen away and far gone in error." 'City of the
Saints'; London, 1861; page 426.
Fiennes Moryson was a gentleman who in the days of Shakespere made the grand
tour of Europe, and happily published an account of his travels in the year
1617. Here is his description of some Masonic Rites, as practiced in Germany
almost 400 years ago.
city of Dresden is very faire and strongly fortified, in which the Elector of
Saxony keeps his Court, having been forty years past onely a village. When the
first stone of the wals was laid there were hidden a silver cup guilded, a
Booke of the Lawes, another of the coynes, and three glasses filled with wine
the ceremonies being performed with all kinds of musicke and solemnity. The
like ceremony was used when they laid the first stone of the stable." Fynes
Moryson's Itinerary. Reprint Glasgow, 1907, Vol. 1; page 18.
Memoirs and published collections of letters also yield grist for the diligent
copyist. Casanova, the prince of adventurers, was initiated into the Craft at
Lyons in the year 1750, and what the arch-rogue thought of Freemasonry is so
interesting that it seems to merit translation in full, but I have time to
give only one short extract from his rather lengthy dissertation:
one person in the world can possibly know everything, but every man in
possession of his faculties and who desires to make use of his moral force
should seek to know as much as possible. A young man of good station who
wishes to travel and see the world, and what is known as good society, and who
on certain occasions does not wish to find himself inferior to his social
equals and excluded from participation in all their pleasures, ought to have
himself initiated into what is called Freemasonry, even if only to learn
superficially what it is. Freemasonry is a beneficent institution which at
certain times and in certain places may have served as a pretext for acts
criminal and subversive of good order; but, good Heavens, what is free from
sum up, I advise every young man of good station who wishes to see the world
to become accepted as a Mason; but I charge him to choose his Lodge carefully;
for although bad company cannot make itself felt inside the Lodge, it may be
there, and the candidate ought to avoid dangerous acquaintances." Translated
from Casanova's Memoires, Paris, Garnier Freres edition, 1910; Vol. II.; page
Passages illustrating the esoteric parts of our mysteries are also to be found
in the most unexpected places. I had one interesting discovery in a book
entitled: Old Time Punishments by William Andrews, F.R.H.S., 1890. As yet I
have had no opportunity of checking the author's statement, or of comparing it
with the original document whereon he bases it:
the curious ordinances which were observed in the reign of Henry VI for the
conduct of the Court of Admiralty for the Humber, are enumerated the various
offences of a maritime connection, and their punishments. In view of the
character of the court, the punishment was generally to be inflicted at
low-water mark, so as to be within the proper jurisdiction of the Admiralty,
the chief officer of which, the Admiral of the Humber, being from the year
1451 the Mayor of Hull. The court being met, and consisting of 'masters,
merchants and marines, with all others that do enjoy the King's stream with
hook, net or engine', were addressed as follows:
masters of the quest, if you, or any of you, discover or disclose anything of
the King's secret counsel, or of the counsel of your fellows (for the present
you are admitted to be the King's counsellors) you are to be and shall be, had
down to the low-water mark, where must be made three times O Yes ! for the
King, and then and there this punishment, by the law prescribed, shall be
executed upon them; that is their hands and feet bound, their throats cut,
their tongues pulled out, and their bodies thrown into the sea.'" Op. cit.
salt of the foregoing extract seems to me to consist in the fact of the
punishment being incurred as a penalty for disclosing "secret counsel."
making our collections we must not forget the daily press, and anything
appearing in it with a Masonic flavor should be either cut out or copied; but
be most careful to append the name of the paper and the date of issue.
Otherwise the unhappy scholar who attempts to verify the reference will soon
qualify for Bedlam; and nothing can be more pernicious or heartbreaking than
an assemblage of loose quotations to which chapter and verse are not appended.
conclude let me give you an idea of what can be gathered by those who read
poetry as well as prose. In the year 1810 there was printed at the Newsletter
Office in Belfast a volume of verse by a peasant poet named Andrew M'Kenzie,
who lived at Donaghadee, and was, therefore, under the jurisdiction of the
same great Masonic province that tonight is offering us its hospitality.
M'Kenzie wrote a Masonic poem, and one of its verses runs:
none to this temple of friendship repair, But those who in dealing with men
will be square. May virtue's strict compass our actions confine In the bonds
of true masonry's precepts divine; The level shall teach us no rank to despise
. . The beggar's our brother, if upright and wise: And oh till the hour-glass
of time shall stand still, May peace, love and harmony crown the Greenhili!"
this poem the author appended the following note:
is an appellation given to a farm in Drumawhey, in the vicinity of Newtownards,
where a respectable body of Freemasons hold their meetings. There no
intemperance disunion or misbehavior, casts an odium on the ancient and
honourable order; but men of fair and unblemished characters: associate
themselves for the purpose of establishing the dominion of virtue."
extract is chiefly interesting as showing that up till a hundred years ago
lodges in the North of Ireland still could and did meet in private houses.
last excerpt is a very short one, and is taken from a poem called The Picture
of a Happy Man, by John Davies of Hereford (1565-1618):
striveth but with frail desire, Desiring nothing that is ill; That rules his
soul by Reason's squire And works by Wisdom's compass still."
the-writer of the foregoing lines was not a Mason he was well worthy of the
honor; and the simple and noble words will have a very familiar sound to all
of us here.
now, brethren, my task is finished, and I have tried to indicate a way wherein
each of us can help in collecting materials for future historians of the
Order; and though it may not be given to us all to be Solomons, yet each of us
may emulate David who prepared the way for the work of better men.
further illustration some stray notes from the Editor's own reading may be
added. In the monumental extravaganza of Francois Rabelais are a number of
phrases that have a curiously Masonic flavor. The square is mentioned a number
of times, as "Thou fallest downright square upon the business," "My actions
shall be regulated by the rule and square of your counsel," "out of all
square, frame and order"; and "made shift to tope to him on the square."
Panurge, in his great eulogy of debt, says it is "the whole cement whereby the
race of men is kept together." The most curious thing is that these and other
like phrases have no counterpart at all in the original French, but are
evidently the additions of Sir Thomas Urquhart, who translated the first books
of this work into English in the middle of the seventeenth century.
little work locally published entitled "The Customs, Superstitions and Legends
of the County of Stafford," is the story of the murder of Kenelm, the boy king
of Mercia. His body is discovered under a thorn bush, and is taken up and
carried in grand procession and devout rejoicing to the Minster at
Winchelcombe. The murderer, the servant of the boy's wicked aunt, dug a grave
first, but the boy told him he was not to be killed there, "and to prove it
stuck an ash branch into the ground, which grew and blossomed, and afterwards
grew into a great tree." The place where the body was found was marked by a
wondrous pillar of light.
recently a discovery was made in the tower of the Parish Church of Chelsea,
London. In the upper part of the tower a carefully formed cavity was
discovered in which apparently a lighted candle had been walled in. It had
gone out half burned for lack of air. Evidently a substitute builder's
sacrifice. This last note will serve as a dreadful warning. It was taken from
the columns of one of the London daily papers a few years ago, but which and
when there is, alas, no record. So dangerous is it in these matters to put off
making the full entry at the time, thinking that one will remember.
Palestine in 1923
BRO. MAJOR JOHN W. SHUMAN, M. D., California
FOLLOWING the hint we gave in the November number last year concerning the
brevity of his article on Palmyra Bro. Shuman has contributed this account of
a pilgrimage (in modern fashion) to the Holy Land itself. The accompanying
illustrations are from photographs taken by Adeline D. Shuman.
not think it fitting that we should leave Asia Minor without visiting the Holy
City. So in the latter part of June, 1923, we drove by auto down the coast to
Haifa: from thence on inland, over a stretch of the first "chicken wire"
laid-in-the-sand road we had ever traveled upon, to this much visited, talked
and written about capital of Palestine. No other country has been played up to
the world so much and for so long a time as this. It matters not how many
write about it, no two stories will be the same, nor will there be any great
untruths in the telling.
this visit we had been living in Beirut, Syria, which is about 175 miles
northwest of Jerusalem, and had there known many who had lived in Palestine
for years; and as the time approached for our trip, our study of the Bible and
the Baedeker became more intense. We not only had accompanying us a lady who
"had visited there", but we employed Abu (a regular Cook's guide for twenty
years) as our dragoman. We also had friends to visit in and about Jerusalem.
Our trip therefore was under the most favorable circumstances. We also picked
a time of the year when the country is not crowded with tourists and
pilgrims--the month of June.
road to Jerusalem we did not stop at Sidon and Tyre, for we had been there
before, and they were in Syria; we were anxious to see towns of "the land
which the Lord gave the Jews". We had to stop at the frontier to let the
French, who mandate Syria, "let us out" and the British, who mandate
Palestine, "let us in". So it was late in the afternoon when we reached
Nazareth, the boyhood home of our Saviour, is not mentioned in the Old
Testament; if it is, it is by another name. It is situated among hills, which
are really the southern spurs of the Lebanons just before they sink into the
plain of Esdraelon. During the time of Christ this city was of importance,
with inhabitants of from fifteen to twenty thousand; only about three
thousand, mostly Christians, live there now.
Nazareth an incident happened which may have interest, it had at least for us;
Madam for a long time had been on the lookout for a pair of ancient brass
candle-sticks and could not find any that just suited her. In Nazareth, in the
cavelike old Synagogue in which it is said that "Christ explained the
Scriptures to the Rabbis", she sighted a pair such as she had desired. I
whispered to Abu, "buy them ;" he answered, "It can't be done !" An old chap
standing nearby overheard us and following me out said, "I'll get them for
you, Effendi, for one Egyptian pound" (about $5.00). I answered, "I will give
you 25 Piasters" (a little over 35 cents at that time) . He said, "but I am a
poor man, my wife is dead and mY children are sick." As I got into the
automobile he climbed on the running board and whispered, "one pound Syrian
($1.25) ?" I said, "Yes, but where are the candle-sticks ?" He pulled them
from under his dirty, ragged old aba, muttering blessings and that he had
mistaken us for "wealthy Americans". With sand and lemon-juice as old brass
will, they cleaned up handsomely, and grace her sideboard now.
a night's rest in Hotel Galilee, under the usual mosquito-netting with which
beds are canopied the year round in Syria and Palestine, we were on our way to
the Sea of Galilee (Cut No. 1). We put to sea from Tiberias (Cut No. 7) in a
boat similar to the one Peter used, bound for Bethsaida (the house of fish) an
ancient town now in ruins, on the north shore. As the wind was head on the
sail was useless, and the boatmen rowed. I removed my shoes after drinking a
hat full of water from the sea, and then washed my feet from over the side of
the boat, much to the ladies' chagrin and the boatmen's displeasure, for it
tended to turn the boat sideways, to the side my feet dragged on. I did not
experience, as Peter did, any difficulty in sinking my feet in the water !
Capernaum (Cut No. 2), like Bethsaida, is only a mass of stones and ruins,
just as Jesus foretold concerning both these cities. A Catholic branch has a
little "home" with a couple of Priests in attendance close by, who served us
cakes and wine. Then having met our auto, we drove back past Mary Magdalene's
old home and a number of other memorable places. Marked changes have taken
place in this country; for in the Master's time, on Galilee's northwestern
shores, there were many flourishing cities. The lake contained many fish, in
fact, fishing was then an industry which is not true today. Another change may
be noted; at Jacob's well (now called the city of Nabulus), where Jesus met
the woman of Samaria, the women, as we went past, were filling their vessels
with water as of yore; but instead of jars or earthenware pitchers they used
gasoline cans, the kind of square tins so familiar to us who served in France
during the late war.
at Nabulus that we stopped for a visit with the two or three hundred remaining
Samaritans, still inhabiting the home of their fathers. The samples we saw
reminded me of certain Indian tribes in our own land--just about to
"peter-out" of existence ! The High Priest (Cut No. 3), who claimed descent
from Aaron--and I did not dispute him--showed us a scroll of parchment which
he said was an "original writing by Moses". I couldn't read it so I believed
on the road from here to Jerusalem (Cut No. 4) that we passed a huge stone
pile used by bandits to stop an automobile only an hour before, for loot; of
which incident I wrote an account for The Lutheran a few months ago. (1) When
we got into Jerusalem we were an hour late, and Cook's representatives were
greatly relieved because they knew that Old Abu, our guide, was coming along
with us and they were afraid that we had suffered mishap; but the only holdup
we had had was caused by a punctured automobile tire !
Following a night at the Continental Hotel, we were ready to take in the
sights. I will not tire you by following step by step our excursions around
and through the town and surrounding country, but will pick out a few of the
most interesting things. The Christian is interested, for the most part, in
the semi-golden Jerusalem of the New Testament; few, if any of its landmarks
remain, for the third temple (so history relates) was burned to the ground by
Titus during the first century, fulfilling what Christ said during the last
week of His earthly life, that "Jerusalem should be destroyed completely so
that there should not be left one stone upon another." However, the guide
would have us believe that we stood on the Temple site, and showed us the
basement where Solomon is said to have kept his horses and chariots. On this
site Omar's mosque, the most beautiful in the world, is erected, and is one of
the most sacred places of worship for the Moslems. Under its dome is a huge
black rock, said to be the very rock upon which Abraham went to offer up
Isaac, his son. In a glass box nearby are a few hairs from the beard of the
stood on this so-called site of the Temple looking eastward across the brook
of Kidron, Olivet's hill was easily recognized; also the Garden of Gethsemane
at the foot of it, in which it is said traditional olive trees are still
living and bearing fruit; this is very unlikely. Calvary, the place of the
skull, is a subject of controversy, some placing it inside, others outside the
present wall of the city. These, and many other landmarks that Christianity
fain would claim, and over which endless controversy continues and many
battles with sword ad powder have taken place, are in the possession of the
Islamites. Even "The last footprint of Christ", in a rock upon Mount Olivet,
has a little mosquelike structure over it, and a Moslem attendant. The
Protestant is just as surprised to find that the portion in charge of the
Christian is in the hands of Catholics; Roman, Greek, Russian and Armenian.
The new "Garden Tomb" of Christ, just outside the city, however, is in the
hands of Protestants. Abu, a devout Catholic, did not like us to visit this
new tomb, for to his mind, "it was sacrilege"!
confess that I was more interested in recent rather than ancient history, in
and about Jerusalem. Some of you may recall that it was Jerusalem that the
Kaiser had hoped to have, as the ruling city of his "Kingdom to come" over the
world; to this end he had enlarged the Damascus gate for a triumphal entry in
order to permit automobiles to enter. He had "restorations" fairly well
started, and a huge beautiful group of buildings upon Mount Olivet built;
amongst the latter is a Lutheran church; on its ceiling he had had painted a
picture of Christ, one of himself (more than life-size) and one of his wife,
he and his wife supporting the first with their hands. This edifice I took to
be a "New Temple". Outside, in the court yard of these, his official
buildings, were two great bronze statues, one of himself and the other of his
life. As already stated, Great Britain rules Palestine and these buildings are
used as administrative buildings. I thought it strange that these statues and
pictures should be allowed to remain; then I had another thought, the English
after all have quite a sense of humor and I believe that they just let them
stand so that folks from all over the world may come and see them and realize
just what a dream William had.
many narrow streets but I think that those in Bethany are narrower and have
sharper turns than in any other city of the world. We demolished two fenders
trying to negotiate a corner of its "main street". Most all streets of the
towns of Palestine must be done on foot, or else astride an ass with the
rider's feet dragging!
Everywhere we encountered tourist-traps, e. g., things made to sell to the
tourist, beads, rugs, pictures, leaves of traditional olive trees, etc.; and
all tourists are anxious to take back souvenirs of the Holy Country. A
minister's wife was actually bottling up water of the River Jordan to take
home for her "husband to baptize babies with" !
Speaking of the River Jordan (Cut No. 8), I don't think that I was ever more
disappointed in my life than I was the morning I first saw this far famed
stream; it was swift, muddy, narrow, and its banks were covered with stunted
brush and weeds; the morning was hot and the air full of buzzing insects. A
group of Russian peasant women, pilgrims, were camped close by; they washed
and cooked with and drank this dirty water. I remarked, "the Missouri river
has this one backed off the map for beauty, grandeur, cleanliness, and
everything, the only difference being that it never had as good a press agent
as the Jordan; David never saw and wrote up the Missouri." This little stream
is the only river the Promised Land ever had, so it has been greatly loved and
is something wrong with my sense of appreciation, for when talking, a short
time ago, with a man who had also visited Palestine, and he asked me "Did you
enjoy the Dead Sea ?" I answered "No, it was dead, dry and dusty." Said he,
"But, my dear sir, it was so quiet and grand you could think and drink in the
beauty !" Yes, I could think how nice a cold drink was going to taste as soon
as I got back to the hotel--and it did! The Galilean Lake is beautiful and
yields beautiful thoughts; the Dead Sea is sad, salty and silent and makes one
yearn for other parts. It is 1,300 feet below the Mediterranean.
evening we had dinner with an official of the British Government and his wife,
most delightful people. Not being a politician, we were allowed to ask
political questions. We inquired, "Just what does the English Government see
in Palestine, and what does it expect to do with it?" His answer was
characteristic, "We will just have to wait and see." What will the outcome be?
For centuries Palestine has been a part of the "Riddle of the Ages". For the
world traveler it is the best sight-seeing place in the world. At Easter time
(and two separate and distinct Easters about two weeks apart are celebrated in
that city) housing facilities are inadequate; and for a number of months each
year, if you would visit Jerusalem you should make reservations early. To the
Christian, Jew and Mohammedan, Jerusalem and its vicinity is the earthly
fountain of their religion. He who reads and hears and does not travel, does
not have his faith broken nor shattered by actual sights of the Holy Land. To
him "it is a Paradise on earth", the one truly green spot in this world. Why
Southern California has water to spare for that poor distressed wilderness !
The dyed-in-the-wool Jew of Russia especially, and a few of those of the U.S.
(though most of the latter know better) want to "go back and reconstruct the
Temple, etc." Surely it is only a vision, for I saw many Jews that had gone
back, with their Fords and American household goods and ideas with them,
anxiously awaiting an opportunity to get back to the U. S. A.
everyone knows, the Jews, from time immemorial, have "gone back" to reinhabit
Palestine and its chief cities. Today this movement is termed zionism. It has
a huge following in this country; this is also called the re-birth of the
ancient capital of Jewry. The Chaluzim (Jewish pioneers) have made zionism a
vital and dynamic thing, and they would have us believe in this country that
today the suburbs of Jerusalem rival the works of Solomon. It was 40 years ago
that the first pioneers started to go there; it is during the past four years
that the movement has really gotten under way. As we drove through North
Palestine American-made farm machinery was in evidence, and it was obvious
that an attempt was being made to use the same although the "hand gleaners"
were at work in the small fields just as in the days of Naomi and Ruth.
However, the swift river Jordan offers plenty of irrigating and hydro-electric
power, should there ever be a demand for it.
Palestine's civilization of today, its customs and ideas are not as they were
in Abraham's time, but are an admixture of those of Egypt, Babylon, Italy,
Greece, Crusade, Turkey, England, America, and, I opine, that like all other
civilization, it will continue to change--
moving finger writes; and having writ, Moves on: nor all your Piety nor wit
Shall lure it back to cancel half a line, Nor all your tears wash out a word
Americans, and not Jews, who had lived there many years and who do (from
choice) continue to live there--as for example the American Colony--are quite
happy in Palestine. They run a school, put up American visitors tavern-like,
and have a splendid up-to-date American group of buildings with the U. S. Flag
flying overhead. Theirs is a life where each is "safe under his own vine and
fig tree, where strife cometh not".
the native Palestinian feels is clearly shown in the following recent
Associated Press report:
Mohammedan and Christian Arabs closed their shops today and ceased work on the
occasion of the arrival of the Earl of Balfour as a protest against the famous
declaration which he issued as foreign secretary, committing Great Britain to
the support of the establishment of a Jewish homeland in Palestine." (2)
United States Consular Service makes it very pleasant and convenient for
American visitors in any foreign country, but especially in Palestine. One
example of this occurred on this trip; three telegrams from Beirut to our
hotel failed to reach us in as many days; but another, through the Consulate,
reached us in thirty minutes, calling us back to Beirut. Thus ended our
"Bandits and Massacres," The Lutheran, April, 1924. By John W. Shuman.
Los Angeles Evening Press, March 25, 1925, Page 1; Foot of 2nd Column.
Interpretation of History
BRO. ELMER MANTZ, New York
author of this suggestive article foreshadows the study of the past from a new
point of view. It has of course been recognized that free associations have
been important factors in history, as for example the influence of the gilds
in the Middle Ages, but so far history has not yet been written definitely
from this standpoint, though we understand that Bro. Mantz contemplates
further studies along this line.
THROUGH the ages there have taken place in civilization quite a large number
of revolutions of which no record has come down to us. Writers did not notice
them, for they took place slowly, imperceptibly, without any apparent
struggles; revolutions at once deep and hidden which shook the foundations of
human society without any evidence on the surface of things and which remained
unnoticed by the very generations that contributed to them. History can
discern them only a long time after they have been accomplished, when, in
comparing two epochs in the life of a people it perceives between them such
great differences that it becomes evident that, in the intervening time, a
great revolution has taken place."
are the words of Fustel de Coulanges, a profound historian of the middle of
the last century. The validity of his statement is apparent in the writings of
the best students of our own times, who speculate with interest, but never
with dogmatic cocksureness, about the meaning of contemporary events. They
realize that they can never be sure of what a thing is and what it means until
it can be looked at from a certain distance, so that at one glance they can
estimate its action and its importance in relation to other things. Within a
hundred years the world has entered into a new stage of its history: "our
times" began with a new industrial system that brought with it a new manner of
living. In almost everything we are further from the people of 1800 than they
were from the people of ancient Rome. Our political and private and industrial
life is governed by conditions that have few true precedents. This means that
we can interpret the "revolutions" of former times as the historians of a
century ago could not do. They lacked the perspective that can be had only
after an accomplished change.
OF THOUGHT SURVIVE
course, no change is ever final, and we are linked to our forefathers by
innumerable deeply-rooted ways of thinking that we can only rarely detect in
ourselves, but that act in us with unfailing effect. By an irony of our human
fate it happens that these inherited ways of thinking often result in
prejudice, so that our contempt for certain things that are of the past is
prompted by a way of thinking that is coeval with the things it makes us
despise. The man who boasts of having unbiased judgment is either mad or
foolish; or else he is a superman. And so the writing of history can never be
a matter of the same unerring accuracy that characterizes mathematics. We can
say only this much: that a conscientious historian can estimate the past
better than he can understand the present, in spite of the paradox that he may
know many more facts about the present than he can ever learn about the past.
Only where there is perspective can there be judgment.
fact accounts for the statement of Fustel de Coulanges and serves, too, as a
sort of article of faith--a credo about history-writing: for through it we
understand how the historian of today may feel confident that he can tell us
certain things about the past that remained hidden from those who were alive
in the epochs he studies. And yet, while historians have had ample time to get
this perspective of the past, they have signally and, it might seem,
unaccountably, failed to recognize one of the greatest "revolutionary" forces
in progress. This failure may, however, be accounted for by the fact that they
were blinded by certain historiographical tenets imposed by the times they
lived in. The present article will attempt to analyze these tenets.
BROTHERHOOD IS A FACTOR IN HISTORY
agency of progress referred to is fraternalism --not any particular group, but
the thing in itself taken in the inclusive sense of all groups founded in the
fraternal spirit and without reference to whether they were strictly secret
societies or not. This article has reference to the historians of the modern
age and their apparently inexplicable omission of fraternalism as a great
agency of progress.
Everyone must have been impressed with the fact that histories belong rather
to the realm of literature than to that of science. The complicated motives of
human conduct and the thousand elements, spiritual or material, that have
their influence upon us--all these constitute so immense a subject that
historians have to restrict themselves to certain aspects only. Thus every
historian treats of only a part of the real history of a period. But in
addition to his selection of topics and materials he must make a selection of
points of view: and it is this last that amounts to what we call the writer's
"philosophy of history". In this article we shall try to explain the omission
of fraternalism in general histories by an analysis of the various
philosophies of history that have been widely accepted in modern times.
Christianity inspired the earliest of the modern historical schools with what
has been called St. Augustine's doctrine of Providence. According to this God
is conceived as the Maker of the world and of human fate, and the providential
school told the story of God's acts in the world of men rather than those of
humanity. It is quite evident that such a concept of history left no place for
the idea of progress, God having preordained the whole gamut of human
experience. Rather the doctrine of the fall of Adam required that all
subsequent history should represent a penitence rather than a progress--a slow
new achievement of the privileged position man had once held but had lost by
his disobedience. In such history human agencies of scientific, political and
economic progress simply cannot exist. The Essay on Universal History of the
seventeenth century French bishop, Bossuet, is considered the classic in this
CHRONICLE IS DISCUSSED
was one kind of history-writing before the scientific renaissance that began
with the 17th century and that is culminating today. Another sort that has
been much derided in modern times but that really approached a scientific
concept of history--was the "chronicle". Here we find no attempt at
interpretation or explanation--only a bare record of events. In reality, the
chronicle was not history, for history is an art of individualistic
interpretation; rather, we should class the chronicle among the records and
documents and conceive of it as material for the writing of history.
chronicle has been derided is not so much because it often set forth totally
unauthenticated happenings as because it reported only the deeds of kings and
prelates. The common man, economic circumstances, literary production and
scientific discovery-all these were neglected by the chroniclers. And it is
just these elements that are now considered all important. Thus, from the
point of view of fraternalism, we may find interesting facts in the
chronicles; but we never find that they recognized fraternalism as a
particularly important factor in progress. But progress, as we have said in
mentioning the providential school of historians, was not a fact at all in the
minds of our forefathers of a few centuries ago.
PHILOSOPHICAL HISTORY FOLLOWED
providential historians were followed, in the 18th century, by a brilliant but
shallow and unbalanced school--that of the so-called "philosophers". Voltaire,
Gibbon and Hume are its representatives. There is much that is beautiful and
inspiring in their works; hut we of the present have no choice but to call
them shallow as historians, for they left out of account too many elements
that are of the utmost importance in our eyes.
were a real school so far as the writing of history is concerned although they
held various religious or philosophical beliefs as widely separated as deism,
atheism and agnosticism. But they were united in a war against the Christian
religion. It is this fact which accounts for their lack of balance. They could
not see that a historian ought to be a historian first and a controversialist
afterward, if need be. Since they did not approve of Christianity they were at
liberty to write history from an independent standpoint, allowing the facts
about the Church to speak for themselves. But they did not choose this course.
What they did was to enter the field of polemics and bend their energy to
combating Christian belief. In terms of history this means that they tried to
show that the effect of Christianity and the Church upon humanity had been
evil. It is for each honest student of these matters to agree or disagree with
the "philosopher" historians, as he may feel disposed. But there can be no
argument about the fact that the "philosophers" were hardly better, as
historians, than the "providential" school they were fighting. Real history
does not depend upon religion alone: it is a complex of many elements. The
"philosophers" were too intent upon refuting the "providential" school to
visualize the enormous range of human endeavor that must be studied by a true
historian. Social forces such as fraternalism were unimportant to the
"philosophers" except in their bearing upon the anti-Christian program that
they had taken in hand.
must seem to any well-read and honest student of the works of the
"philosophers" that they were hardly historians at all, even though they
recorded an infinite number of facts in a most interesting manner. We judge
them so harshly because they were guilty-I believe, unintentionally--of a real
blunder in method: they adopted a preconceived idea and fitted the facts of
history into the framework of this idea. They assumed that the priesthood had
intimidated and deceived mankind with the intention of gaining power and
wealth. Having assumed this--which, in the nature of things, would have to be
an exaggeration or a misinterpretation-they were incapable of treating facts
historically, or, in other words, judicially and scientifically. The
"philosophers" made their generalization before they put down the truth about
the separate facts in history. The process should be just the contrary: if
"laws of history", or generalizations, are to be worth the name, then they
cannot be deduced; they must be induced. The modern classification of
history-writing as a science is correct only if history follows the scientific
method of proceeding from isolated facts to generalizations--which is what is
meant by "induction". Therefore, according to any scientist of today--no
matter whether he be Christian or anti-Christian--the method of the
"philosophers" must seem faulty and their conclusions worthless as
contributions to science.
FRATERNAL ASSOCIATIONS INFLUENCE HISTORY
"philosophers" found it easy to generalize because their generalizations cost
them little effort. And having gotten the habit of generalization they made an
over-use of the method. From the point of view of the history of fraternalism
the method seems to pursue a vicious circle. Fraternalism is a definite mode
or process. It is not to be accounted for by a "providential", nor by a
"philosophic", nor by a democratic, nor by an individualistic theory of
history. Fraternalism refers to the small groups within the large groups of
the state or the religion. It is a manner of accomplishment, however, rather
than a separate element in society. The generalizing "philosophers" saw only
the religion and the kingship on the one hand and suffering humanity on the
other. Had they been less hasty, and had they taken the pains to investigate
the workings and ideals of fraternalism, they might have discovered that human
progress owes more to fraternalism than to their harsh and controversial
ROMANTIC SCHOOL ARISES
same unscientific method of the "philosophers" was equally the method of their
Christian adversaries such as Joseph de Maistre, Bonald and others. It applies
also to the next large school of historians--the school of the "Romanticists".
Romanticism amounted to an exaggerated cult of the individual. That seems to
be its predominant characteristic. But, among other things, it was a
temperamental interpretation of history, and, for that reason, was just as
likely as the school of the "philosophers" to become enmeshed in
generalizations. The romantic historians, like the "philosophers", re-wrote
the story of humanity according to preconceived ideas rather than as the facts
required it to be written. Guizot in France and Carlyle in England are
outstanding representatives of this method. They make pleasant reading, but
such reading tells us more about Guizot and Carlyle than about the real facts
of history. If one were to sum up the romantic theory in a word, one would say
that it attributes progress rather to the individual than to the Church, the
kingship or the people. Our contemporary psychological school of biographers
seems to be doing about what the romantic historians did, although for other
reasons. The history of fraternalism, when it comes to be studied in an
unprejudiced and scientific manner, will probably show that, while the genius
has always been the inventor of things and of thoughts, the fraternal groups,
more than any other agency, have perfected his labors and made them useful to
POSITIVE SCHOOL SUCCEEDS
more group of historians must be mentioned-that which interprets history
through the material circumstances of life in different parts of the world. No
doubt they have called attention to things that were so close to everyone's
experience that they could hardly be visualized with any perspective. And the
mere mention of the name of Karl Marx, who wrote around 1847, is enough to
show how powerful has been the influence of the "economic" school of
historians. We remember, and we still read, Buckle's History of Civilization
in England; and although this work was published almost seventy years ago it
is still a convincing brief in favor of conceiving civilization as a product
of economic circumstances. And histories of this sort are still being written,
for the reason, principally, that the present history of the world is a
history of wealth rather than of men.
times may change. But even now we know well enough that, although men are
influenced by economic circumstances, still human history must remain a
history of men and not a history of things. The ultimate story of progress
will not be exclusively a record of material circumstances any more than it
will be one of the doctrines of priests, the deeds of kings, the
accomplishments of genius or the aspirations and sufferings of the people
without name--the "generations of men".
believe that we get what we deserve. But we know that we get this only when we
deserve it in the eyes of the world. And, from this point of view-which is the
only criterion for the writer about verified facts -we are unworthy of notice
unless we know how to ally our labors with the needs of the world.
Perhaps my readers need no further suggestion than this. The history of
fraternalism is a part--and a most important part--of the history of human
progress. And there is no doubt whatsoever that those who have recounted the
vicissitudes of human effort have not yet applied themselves, in a consistent
manner, to discovering the whole truth about a hidden but what I have reason
to believe an almost omnipotent modality of progress.
SCHOOL IS NOT DESIRED
real thinker would wish to endorse a "fraternal" school of historiography; it
would amount only to one more exaggeration and deformation, after so many
others. But every intelligent man would, I think, like to know in just what
wise fraternalism has made progress possible. Until the history is written we
can only suppose that fraternalism is so important in history. No one has
proved the point so far.
is time to come back to Fustel de Coulanges and the beginning of the present
essay: "There have taken place in civilization quite a large number of
revolutions of which no record has come down to us . . . revolutions at once
deep and hidden which shook the foundations of human society. . . ." With some
of these, and perhaps with almost all, fraternalism has had something to do.
The student of Masonry will not be at a loss for examples of this. Quite
theoretically, then, and without going into any detail about the role of
fraternalism in progress, we can state this much:
who have told the story of mankind have told it incompletely and from
preconceived points of view. They have recounted the doings of God on earth
and have made of their fellows the instruments or the victims of a divine
providence. They have explained history as the mirror of the acts of kings,
heroes and geniuses. They have told us that civilization springs like a plant,
naturally and inevitably, from that soil of humanity, the people. They have,
again, interpreted everything as material cause and effect, and have made
music and poetry, philosophy and science, mere products of the air and the
soil and the water--flowers of experience that blossom spontaneously on the
bosom of matter.
cannot subscribe to all this. All of our everyday experience tells us that, in
human life, there must be a vehicle, a means, an instrument, an organization.
Without these a genius is as worthless to society as a drunkard in a
hurricane. The "revolutions" of which Fustel de Coulanges speaks have
undoubtedly taken place; and they have taken place without society being aware
of them. The priesthood, the kingship, the people, the genius, the ground we
live on--none of these fully explains the mystery of progress. No single
theory ever will. But it is very probable that common sense and historic fact
will at last be reconciled through a scholarly and exhaustive history of the
social influence of fraternalism.
LANGUAGE OF THE RITUAL
word in our daily speech has a history of its own, almost a biography, which,
if a man wishes to discover it, lets a little window into times past, old ways
of thinking, inventions, discoveries, adventures, romances, forgotten ideas.
Allen Upward wrote a book once of 320 pages on the one word "idealism," and at
the end left many things unsaid. Another man could write a similar book on any
other word, except those that have been recently manufactured.
library might be thus written on the language of our Ritual! To the
etymological historian all of its words would be so many thousands of windows,
many of them of richest stained glass, opening back on such panoramas of the
past as would amaze us. The philosophies of the eighteenth century would be
there, the many colored gild life of the Middle Ages, theorems of the Arabic
mathematicians, reveries of the kabbalists, guesses of the occultists,
thoughts of Greek philosophers, visions of Hebrew prophets, the twilight
mysteries of Egypt.
WAYS OF WISDOM ARE BEAUTIFUL
useful knowledge is the great object of our desire, let us diligently apply to
the practice of the art, and steadily adhere to the principles it inculcates.
Let not the difficulties we have to encounter check our progress, or damp our
zeal; but let us recollect that the ways of wisdom are beautiful, and lead to
pleasure. Knowledge is attained by degrees, and cannot everywhere be found.
Wisdom seeks the secret shade, the lonely cell designed for contemplation.
There enthroned she sits, delivering her sacred oracles. There let us seek
her, and pursue the real bliss. Though the passage be difficult, the farther
we trace it, the easier it becomes.
and harmony constitute the essence of Freemasonry; while we enlist under that
banner, the society must flourish and private animosities give place to peace
and good fellowship. Uniting in one design, let it be our aim to be happy
ourselves, and contribute to the happiness of others. Let us mark our
superiority and distinction amongst men, by the sincerity of our profession as
Masons, let us cultivate the moral virtues and improve in all that is good and
amiable; let the Genius of Masonry preside over our conduct, and under her
sway let us perform our part with becoming dignity, let us preserve an
elevation of understanding, a politeness of manner, and an evenness of temper;
let our recreations be innocent, and pursued with moderation; and never let
irregular indulgences lead to the subversion of our system, by impairing our
faculties, or exposing our character to derision. In conformity to our
precepts, as patterns worthy of imitation, let the respectability of our
character be supported by the regularity of our conduct, and the uniformity of
our deportment, then, as citizens of the world, and friends in every clime, we
shall be living examples of virtue and benevolence, equally zealous to merit,
as to obtain universal approbation. --Preston's Illustrations of Masonry, 12th
Men Who Were Masons
BRO. GEORGE W. BAIRD, P. G. M., District of Columbia
HUNTINGTON, Governor of Ohio, and State the first Grand Master of Masons in
that State, was born in Connecticut in 1766. He was the nephew and namesake of
Samuel Huntington who signed the Declaration of Independence. His uncle
adopted him and brought him up as his son, and when he died made him his heir.
elder Huntington gave his nephew all the advantages of his wealth and
position, sending him to Yale after he had passed through school. He graduated
at the age of twenty, after which he took up the study of law and was in due
course admitted to the Connecticut bar. Here he received an appointment as
"King's Attorney", a distinction now known in Great Britain and the British
Empire as King's Counsel.
year 1800 he went west on a tour of inspection and decided to settle in what
was known then as the "Western Reserve." This was the time of active
settlement and organization of the new territory and he became the dominant
public character of the new community. In 1801 he came to live permanently in
what was soon to be the State of Ohio, bringing his wife, a highly
accomplished lady, and their two sons with him. After a short sojourn in
Youngstown they moved to Cleveland, where they occupied what was then the most
pretentious dwelling in the place. It was a house of squared logs. He attended
courts in Warren, Canfield and elsewhere, riding the circuits on horseback
carrying his law books in his saddle bags, crossing swamps and swimming
rivers, and meeting all the other difficulties of pioneer trails.
thirty-five years of age he was appointed Lieutenant Colonel of the Trumbull
County Militia by the Territorial Governor of Ohio. When the Territory was
organized as a State he was chosen as a member of the Committee that wrote its
Constitution. He was also the first Senator from Trumbull County, and Speaker
of the first Legislature that met at Chillicothe in An. which was in the
beginning chosen as the Capital of Ohio. Later he was elected first Judge of
the Supreme Court (he had already been Judge of the Court of Appeals at
Cleveland) but resigned from the bench to take the office of Governor of the
State, which he held for two years. When the War of 1812 broke out he was
actively engaged, receiving the appointment of Paymaster of the Army. In the
course of this charge he had to go to Washington and exert his utmost
endeavors to secure funds to meet the demands of the soldiers for their pay.
It is not too much to say that his success in this relieved a very serious
condition that was undermining the morale of the forces engaged on the
Masonic career was no less distinguished than his public life. From the
Proceedings of the Grand Lodge of Ohio for 1920 we learn that he was made a
Mason in Connecticut. There seems no doubt that he received the degrees of
Lodge and Chapter at Norwich, his native place. As the old records of this
lodge have been destroyed this cannot be verified. but he was certainly a
Mason when he came west as he was named as a charter member of the first lodge
organized on the Western Reserve, now Old Erie Lodge, No. 3, and was one of
the signers of the petition for its charter to the Grand Lodge of Connecticut.
In 1809 he was elected Grand Master of the newly formed Grand Lodge of Ohio.
The first steps for the formation of this body were taken in 1808 when General
Putnam was chosen as Grand Master. But the latter owing to the disabilities of
age and ill‑health, which he felt were drawing upon him, refused to serve, so
that Bro. Huntington was actually the first Grand Master to be installed.
Huntington was a very well educated man outside of his profession. In his
youth he had had the advantages of foreign travel, and among other
accomplishments spoke the French language fluently. He died at Painesville
June 7, 1817, and was buried in what is now called "Evergreen Cemetery" in
that town and the monument shown in the illustration has been erected to his
TURHAND KIRTLAND FIRST MASTER OF THE FIRST MASONIC LODGE ON THE WESTERN
BRO. JAMES TYLER Ohio (Concluded from last month)
were by this time many Masons on the Reserve, and in the latter part of 1803,
the same year in which Ohio was admitted as a state of the Union, and the
fourth under the Federal Constitution, Judge Kirtland, together with a number
of "Free and Accepted Ancient York Masons" residing in various parts of the
then Trumbull County, met at Warren and agreed to organize and establish a
lodge of the Order to be located at Warren. A petition was sent to the Grand
Lodge of Connecticut as most of the petitioners were members of Connecticut
lodges, praying for authority to form a lodge under its jurisdiction and
protection. Bro. Samuel Tylee, of Hubbard, was appointed as their
representative, and with the petition journeyed on horseback to New Haven
where he presented it to the Grand Lodge then in session. On Oct. 19, 1803, a
charter was granted and Bro. Tylee was appointed Deputy Grand Master for the
purpose of proceeding to Warren to dedicate the new lodge and install its
letter received from Bro. William B. Hall, of Merniden Conn., states that the
records of the Grand Lodge Communication of Oct. 19, 1803, contain the
following reference to Erie Lodge:
Grand Lodge was opened in the Third Degree of Masonry when a petition was
presented from sundry brethren residing in the County of Trumbull, and State
of Ohio, representing that the fraternity was numerous in that quarter; and
there was no Grand Lodge in that State, that they had principally emigrated
from the State of Connecticut, and that there was no Grand Lodge to whom they
could, with so much propriety, apply as to this, under whose fostering hand,
much the greatest part of them had derived their existence as Masons, praying
for the formation of a new Lodge in the Town of Warren, County of Turmbull,
petition was referred to a special committee who after taking the subject
matter of the same into careful consideration. reported in favor of the
petition, and recommended the adoption of a resolution that it was expedient
to grant the prayer thereof.
sundry remarks had been made thereon, the report was accepted, and it was
ordered, that a charter be granted, and that our Worshipful Bro. Turhand
Kirtland be the first Master, and the other officers confirmed in their
respective appointments, agreeable to the prayer of the petitioners. The Lodge
to be known and designated by the name of Erie, No. 47, and the authority
given to them by virtue of this charter to continue and be in force for one
year from and after the time when there shall be a Grand Lodge regularly
constituted within and for the State of Ohio.
March 16, 1804, at 2 p. m., Deputy Master Tylee, with the pro tem officers of
the Grand Lodge of Connecticut appointed from among the brethren, opened the
Grand Lodge and proceeded to "constitute, consecrate, and solemnly install the
said petitioners and their said officers by the name of Erie Lodge, No. 47,
Ancient, Free and Accepted York Masons." He then closed the Grand Lodge of
Connecticut and at 5 p. m. the first meeting of the new lodge was held. The
first officers of Erie Lodge, No. 47, were:
Turhand Kirtland, Worshipful Master. John Leavitt, Senior Warden. William
Rayen, Junior Warden. Calvin Austin, Treasurer. Camden Cleveland, Secretary.
Aaron Wheeler, Senior Deacon. John Walworth, Junior Deacon. Dr. Charles
Dutton, Arad Way, Stewards. Ezekiel Hover, Tyler.
choice of Judge Kirtland as the first Master of the new lodge was a well
deserved one, not only because he had taken so prominent a part in the affairs
of the Reserve but also because of his previous Masonic record. He was
Worshipful Master of Compass Lodge, No. 9, of Wallingford, Conn., in 1783,
1789, 1795 and 1800, and he represented Compass Lodge at a convention held at
the home of Bro. Brown, in New Haven, on April 29, 1783, for the purpose of
forming the Grand Lodge of Connecticut. He was one of the signers of the first
constitution of the Grand Lodge of Connecticut, on July 8, 1789, twelve lodges
being represented. He acted as Grand Junior Warden at a Special Communication
of the Grand Lodge of Connecticut on Dec. 30, 1794, and he was present at the
Communications of the Grand Lodge of Connecticut on Oct. 14, 1795; Oct. 18,
1797, and May 14, 1800.
attendance was beset with many hardships in a partially settled wilderness.
"Searching old records, one often will find meeting nights adjusted to come in
the full of the moon, so that brethren could have light to aid them in finding
their way home." Where the lodge was organized and held its first meetings is
not now known. "Tradition, having foundation no doubt in fact, says that they
met in 1810 in the gambrel-roofed, red-frame building, in which the (old)
Western Reserve Bank was first organized, that stood on the east side of Main
street." Later, and during the war with Great Britain (1812 1815), they met at
a tavern then standing on the west side and just back from Main street. "From
this room they marched in procession, on the celebration of St. John's Day, in
June of one of those years, to a log building then used as a school house,
standing on the northwest corner of the park (Monumental)."
after this, probably in 1816, they removed to 'Castle William,' afterwards
known as the Pavillion Hotel," located on the south side of Market street.
They continued to occupy this room until about 1829 when the lodge entered
upon a period of inactivity lasting for over twenty-five years and brought
about by the anti-Masonic tempest of 1826. The building was called "Castle
William" after the first name of its owner, Bro. William Cotgreave. It was one
of the most notable structures in Warren of the early days and was at first a
log cabin built by Jacob Harsh in 1802. About the year 1807 Bro. Cotgreave,
who had purchased the property, made an extensive but extremely homely
addition, the lower story of which was made of logs in block-house fashion,
while the upper two stories were frame gabled roof. "For many years, until the
fire of 1846, in and out, round and about it surged much of the judicial,
social, political, religious and literary life of the village." At first the
lower story was used as a jail and the upper in common as a court room,
church, Masonic hall and for public meetings, shows, balls, etc. In 1828,
"Castle William" was purchased by James L. Vangorder and underwent extensive
repairs. It was then known as the "Pavillion Hotel" and was the headquarters
of seven stage routes which daily passed through the village.
Lodge, No. 47, continued to work under the authority so granted, "until
considering that greater benefits would arise to the Craft by the formation of
a Grand Lodge for the State of Ohio, they on the 11th of March, 1807, at their
annual meeting, appointed George Tod, John Leavitt and Wm. Rayen a committee
to correspond with the other lodges of the state on the subject." At a meeting
of the lodge, held Nov. 11, 1807, this committee reported that they had
received communications in answer to theirs from lodges at Marietta,
Cincinnati, Zanesville and Chillicothe, relative to the formation of a Grand
Lodge. The lodge then elected George Tod and John W. Seeley delegates from
Erie Lodge, No. 47, to meet delegates from these lodges in a convention to be
held at Chillicothe on the first Monday of January, 1818. "Thus to Erie Lodge
belongs the honor of being the first to suggest and first to take the
initiative towards establishing the Grand Lodge of Ohio."
this convention the six lodges then existing in the state were represented.
They were located respectively at Marietta, Cincinnati, Worthington, Warren
and Zanesville. The lodge at Worthington was represented by its W. M., the
Rev. James Kilbourne, but for some reason, not now known, his credentials were
not deemed sufficient and the lodge was not allowed a representative in the
convention. (Rev. Kilbourne later held many offices in the Grand Lodge.)
Robert Oliver, of Union Lodge, No. 1, Marietta, was made chairman and George
Tod, of Erie Lodge, was appointed secretary. After deliberating for some days
the convention unanimously adopted a resolution, proposed by Lewis Cass, of
Zanesville, and seconded by Bro. John W. Seeley, of Erie Lodge, as follows:
"Resolved That it is expedient to form a Grand Lodge in this state."
election which followed, Rufus Putnam, the "Father and Founder of Ohio," was
elected M. W. Grand Master and Bro. George Tod R. W. Senior Grand Warden.
Among the papers of Bro. George Tod in the possession of the Western Reserve
Historical Society, Cleveland, Ohio, is a copy of the printed proceedings of
this convention. The signature of Bro. Tod appears on the title page, which
reads as follows:
Published for the Society
Printed at Brothers Parcells & Barnes
5808 - A. D. 1808
delegates to this convention reported its proceedings at the annual meeting of
Erie Lodge March 9, 1808, and at a meeting held Dec. 5, 1809, the lodge
appointed Bros. George Tod, Samuel Huntington and John H. Adgate as their
representatives to the first Grand Communication of the Grand Lodge to be held
at Chillicothe on Jan. 2, 1809.
the Grand Lodge convened, the Grand Master, Gen. Rufus Putnam, forwarded a
communication declining the office to which he had been elected because of
poor health, as follows:
was with high sensibility and gratitude I received the information that the
Grand Convention of Masons convened at Chillicothe, in January last, elected
me to the office of Grand Master of your most ancient and honorable society,
but, however sensibly I feel the high honor done me by the Convention, and am
disposed to promote the interest of the craft in general, and in this State in
particular, I must decline the appointment. My sun is far past the meridian;
it is almost set; a few sands only remain in my glass; I am unable to undergo
the necessary labors of that high and important office; unable to make you a
visit at this time, without a sacrifice and hazard of health which prudence
the great Architect, under whose all-seeing eye all Masons profess to labor,
have you in His holy keeping that when our labors here are finished, we may,
through the merits of Him that was dead, but now is alive, and lives
forevermore, be admitted into that temple not made with hands, eternal in the
heavens: Amen. So prays your friend and brother, "Marietta, Dec. 26th, 1808.
resignation was accepted, and in the election which followed Bro. Samuel
Huntington, of Erie Lodge, became the first acting M. W. Grand Master of the
Grand Lodge of Ohio, and Bro. William Rayerl, the first Junior Warden of Erie
Lodge, No. 47, was elected R. W. Junior Grand Warden.
Following his term as Worshipful Master, Judge Kirtland served Erie Lodge as
Treasurer in 1807. His name does not appear in the proceedings of the Grand
Lodge of Ohio until the year 1815 at which time he was the delegate from Erie
Lodge, No. 3, to the Grand Communication of that year. He also represented, by
proxy, Meridian Orb Lodge, No. 10, of Painesville; Jerusalem Lodge, No. 19, of
Hartford; Western Star Lodge, No. 21, of Canfield (later Youngstown), and
Rising Sun Lodge, No. 22, of Ashtabula. "In accordance with the regulations of
that period, a delegate was permitted to represent four lodges as their
accredited proxy in addition to the one of which he was a member." Subordinate
lodges availed themselves of this privilege in order to lessen the expense of
their representation. Judge Kirtland was one of a committee of three appointed
to draw up resolutions regarding the action of American Union Lodge at
Marietta which had for a number of years previously ceased all connection with
the Grand Lodge. He was elected R. W. Deputy Grand Master in the election
which followed but was not present at the Communication of 1816.
this time Judge Kirtland, now a man almost sixty years of age, does not appear
to have taken an active part in the affairs of the lodge. He lived through the
dark days of the anti-Masonic period which followed the disappearance of
"William Morgan" of New York State (after his publication of a pretended
exposition of Freemasonry in 1826) and saw Erie Lodge cease working in 1828
along with a majority of the lodges in the State of Ohio. He died ten years
before the dawn of that brighter day when the lodge was reorganized in 1854 as
the present Old Erie Lodge.
we may have a just estimate of this active and influential man, we find him
representing Trumbull County in the General Assemblies of 1814-15 and 1815-16
as State Senator. He was a justice of the peace at Poland for over twenty
years. In 1813 he was elected a member of the Board of Directors of the
Western Reserve Bank, chartered in the winter of 1811-1812. "This was the
first bank established on the Western Reserve and it survived all other banks
in the state which entered the field before or with it." It was the only one
that continued solvent until the end of the State Bank organization and was
reorganized as the First National Bank (now the Union Savings & Trust Co.) in
1863, under the National Banking Act of that year. Regarding the old Western
Reserve Bank, one account states that "through its half century career, this
corporation has not only made good quarterly returns, on paper, but has
deservedly enjoyed a good repute among men."
services were early held at the home of Judge Kirtland at Poland, and in 1807
residents of Canfield, Poland and Boardman met in the latter village where
Episcopal services were held. Judge Kirtland's name appears first on a list of
twenty-one names of petitioners who, on June 20, 1809, drafted and presented
to the bishop of New York State the following petition:
the subscribers, inhabitants of the town of Boardman. Canfield and Poland, in
the county of Trumbull, and State of Ohio, being desirous to promote the
worship of God after the order of the Protestant Episcopal Church in the
United States of America, having for some time met and attended divine service
according to the established form of that church and finding ourselves under
great inconveniences for the want of prayer books and sermons, to remedy which
and to endeavor to procure the assistance of a worthy teacher, judge it best
to form ourselves into a regular Episcopal society, investing the same with
the proper officers, thereby putting ourselves in the proper situation to
petition the Rt. Revd. Bishop of the State of New York, praying him to
incorporate us and grant us such relief as in his wisdom he may deem meet and
favorable reply being received, a meeting was held Aug. 12, 1809, at which
Judge Kirtland presided as moderator. St. James' parish was organized and
Turhand Kirtland was elected one of three vestrymen. This was the first
Episcopal church on the Western Reserve and the second in the state, the first
being organized at Worthington in 1804.
early as 1805 Judge Kirtland secured sufficient funds from the settlers to
purchase a fine library for Poland, and this library was kept abreast of the
times as long as he lived. His name is closely identified with the first
attempt at establishing an institution of learning on the Reserve. A petition
was sent to the territorial legislature in 1801 by the Rev. Joseph Badger for
a charter to establish a college on the Connecticut Western Reserve. It was
signed by Roger Newberry, John Leavitt, Judson Canfield, Col. Samuel
Huntington, John S. Edwards, Turhand Kirtland, Edward Paine, Samuel Woodruff,
John Young, William Hart, Henry Champion, Moses Cleaveland, Ephriam Root, Rev.
Nathan Strong, Samuel Mills, Joseph Badger and Eliphalet Austin. This petition
was not granted. After the admission of Ohio as a state, in 1803, the petition
was renewed and a charter granted to the Erie Literary Society. The preamble
of the act declares that:
Whereas it has been represented to this assembly by certain persons associated
under the name of the Erie Literary Society, that a number of proprietors of
land within the county of Trumball are desirous to appropriate a part thereof
to the support of a Seminary of learning within said county, and that the
intent of such donations cannot be carried into effect without the
interference of the Legislature, by incorporating a board of trust for the
reception and management of any property, real or personal, that may be given
for said purpose and for the establishment and direction of such Seminary, as
soon as funds sufficient shall be collected.
enacted, That David Hudson, Eliphalet Austin, Henry Champion, John Leavitt.
Martin Smith Ephriam Root, Harmon Canfield John Walworth, John S. Edwards,
William Hart, Turhand Kirtland, Esq. Solomon Griswold and Rev. Joseph Badger,
and their successors in office, be and they are hereby created a body politic
and corporate by the name of the Erie Literary Society and as such shall
remain and have perpetual succession, etc.
was great rivalry regarding a site for the institution, and in a letter dated
Nov. 26, 1807, signed by Judge Kirtland as trustee, states that:
trustees were authorized to fix the place for the college and after
advertizing for proposals and adjourning for several times, they affixt it at
Burton and the subscribers together with the Inhabitants and proprietors of
Burton have erected a house and almost completed it and have deeded their
lands and given other security to the amount of seven thousand dollars
exclusive of the building.
list of the amount which each subscriber was to pay in lands towards the
college, appears the name of Judge Kirtland and the sum donated, $834.07, was
the third largest subscription. Burton Academy, founded in 1804, was the first
institution of its kind on the Reserve. Its building was destroyed by fire in
1810. The War of 1812 seriously interfered with the progress of the Academy
and it was not until 1819 that a new building was completed.
Kirtland was twice married. His first wife, to whom he was married Jan. 2,
1780, was Mary Beech, daughter of Moses Beech. She died at Wallingrord, Conn.,
Nov. 24, 1792. His second marriage was to Polly Potter, on Jan. 19, 1793. She
was the daughter of Dr. Jared Potter, of New Haven, Conn. They reared a family
of six children. One son, Dr. Jared Potter Kirtland, was a noted physician and
naturalist, a graduate of Yale and a professor in the Western Reserve Medical
College. He was at one time president of the Ohio State Medical Association.
"In 1830 Jerusalem Lodge, No. 19, was represented (at the communication of the
Grand Lodge) by Bro. Jared P. Kirtland."
advanced age of eighty-nine years, Judge Kirtland closed his life at Poland.
a man of great energy, character and ability and left at his death a large
property. Of his life, "enough remains to show the unflagging and indomitable
perseverance of the man, no complaints, no regrets, but a steady pushing
forward amid untold trials and privations of those pioneer days." He was
esteemed and respected by that large circle of active and influential men who
led the tide of immigration into the wilderness and of whom it has been said:
men were of a class by themselves, and stand pre-eminent among the pioneers of
all preceding and succeeding times for the special qualities of hardihood and
adventure, united with intellectual powers and capacities of the highest
order. They not only introduced the plow-share into the virgin soil of the
wilderness, but they brought with them the Bible and the spelling book, the
artisan, the circuit preacher, and the school master, as co-ordinate parts of
well that such men should not be forgotten.
ADDITIONAL NOTES After the land that fell to Turhand Kirtland had passed out
of the possession of its original owner, Kirtland village became a Mormon
settlement which, prior to their general exodus to Missouri in 1837, numbered
about four thousand. One of the most permanent reminders of their occupancy is
the Temple, which still stands at Kirtland. "In front over the largest window
is a white tablet bearing the inscription, 'House of the Lord, built by the
Church of the Latter Day Saints, A. D. 1834.' " This was the first Mormon
William Wick was the first minister of the Presbyterian Church at Youngstown.
He was an intimate friend of his contemporary, Rev. Joseph Badger, the first
Western Reserve Missionary. Rev. Badger, assisted by the Rev. Messrs. Lait and
Wick, organized the First Presbyterian Church at Warren in 1803. "At candle
lighting Mr. Wick-preached."
"History of Rising Sun Lodge," Ashtabula, Ohio, records that on "June 24,
1817--St. John's Day---Bro. Joseph Badger delivered a sermon."
24, 1824--E. A. Degree conferred, after which Bro. Badger delivered a
records of Jerusalem Lodge, No. 19, state that a regular meeting was held on
May 23, 1820, at their lodge room in Hartford, Ohio. Twenty-six brethren
present. Daniel Bushnell, W. M.--Rev. Joseph Badger, visitor." Rev. Badger was
the first companion exalted by Western Reserve Chapter, No. 8. Ashtabula,
Trumbull County was named in honor of Jonathan Trumbull, Jr, then Governor of
Connecticut (1798-1809). He was the son of the original "Brother Jonathan"
Trumbull, Governor of Connecticut (1770-1784) and one of the most
distinguished men of his time. "No better name could have been selected for
this Western Connecticut."
General St. Clair was a frequent visitor at, but not a member of N. C. Harmony
Lodge, No. 2, Cincinnati. "Notwithstanding his brilliant and honorable career,
he died poor. In the eighty fourth year of his life he undertook a journey
(from Pennsylvania) to Youngstown, and was found dead on the road the next
morning.... In the cemetery at Greensburg, Pa., a neat little sandstone
monument was erected by a Masonic lodge with this inscription:
earthly remains of Major General Arthur St. Clair are deposited beneath this
humble monument, which is erected to supply the place of a nobler one, due him
from his country." On Aug. 15, 1913, the Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of
Pennsylvania "unveiled a 'nobler monument' in granite, an exact duplicate of
the old sandstone memorial, except for the (above) explanatory inscription on
the east panel."-THE BUILDER.
1811 Turhand Kirtland agreed to lease a farm in Poland to John Reeves "for 100
gallons of good whisky yearly."
Whittlesey's "Early History of Cleveland" is a letter from Judge Kirtland to
General Moses Cleaveland, Canterbury, Conn., dated July 17, 1800, Cleveland,
Ohio, which states in closing:
have the pleasure of your brother's company at this time. He held his first
talk with the Smooth Nation, at Mr. Carter's this morning. Appearances are
very promising. I flatter myself he will do no discredit to his elder brother,
in his negotiations with the aborigines.
dear sir, with much esteem, yours, "Turhand Kirtland."
Compass Lodge, of Wallingford, Conn., was instituted April 28, 1769, by St.
John's Provincial Grand Lodge of Boston (warranted July 30, 1733, by the Grand
Lodge of England, the R. W. Henry Price being the first Provincial Grand
Master). The first independent Grand Lodge was Massachusetts Grand Lodge,
March 8, 1777. The Grand Lodge of Connecticut was organized July 8, 1789, of
which Compass Lodge was No. 9. Thus Judge Kirtland was a Mason under the
jurisdiction of three Grand Lodges, Massachusetts, Connecticut and, after
1808, of the Grand Lodge of Ohio.
Lewis Cass (1782-1866) was appointed Governor of Michigan, 1813, Secretary of
War, 1831, and Secretary of State, 1857. He was a Grand Master of Masons in
both Ohio and Michigan.
Putnam's grave is in the old Mound Cemetery at Marietta and is marked by a
plain granite monument bearing the following inscription:
GENERAL RUFUS PUTNAM
the leader of the
which made the
settlement in the
Territory of the North-West.
April 9, 1738
May 4, 1824
George Tod was made a Mason in Erie Lodge in 1804. He was born at Suffield,
Conn., 1773, and died at Brier Hill, Ohio, 1841. He was the father of War
Governor David Tod.
time of the first meeting of the Grand Lodge of Ohio, (1808), the charter
granted to Erie Lodge, No. 47, by the Grand Lodge of Connecticut (1803) was
surrendered to the Grand Lodge of Ohio and a warrant of dispensation was
issued Jan 11, 1809, under which the lodge continued to work until 181 when a
charter dated at Chillicothe on the fifth day of January was received,
constituting the lodge at Warren as Erie Lodge No. 3, of the Grand Lodge of
Ohio. In the year 1828, Erie Lodge, No. 3, was represented at the
Communications of the Grand Lodge held at Columbus by Bros. Rufus P. Spalding
Francis Freeman and Edward Spear, but ceased working thereafter and its
charter and records were consumed in 1833 when the house of Bro. Spear
(standing on the ground now occupied by the Hippodrome building) was burned.
On June 2, 1854, a warrant of dispensation was issued to a number of the
members of Erie Lodge, No. 3, who were still living. This dispensation was
under the title of Western Reserve Lodge which name was adopted because during
the lapse of Erie Lodge No. 3, another lodge of that name had been
established. Or Oct. 18, 1854, at the communication of the Grand Lodge it was
"Resolved, That the name Western Reserve Lodge be changed to Old Erie, and
that it be numbered three." The present charter of Old Erie Lodge, No. 3,
bears the above date, and so "The lodge had restored to it the name, number
and precedence to which of right they belong."
Pioneers of the Western Reserve, Harvey Rice, 1890.
Historic Towns of the Western States, Lyman B. Powell, 1901.
and Her Western Reserve, Alfred Mathews, 1902.
History of Connecticut, George L. Clark, 1914.
Historical Collections of the Mahoming Valley, 1876.
History of Trumbull and Mahoning Counties, H. Z. Williams & Bro., 1882.
History of Mahoning County, Geo. T. W. Sanderson, 1907.
Biographical Cyclopedia of Ohio, J. Fletcher Brennan, 1879.
History of the Western Reserve, Harriot Taylor Upton, 1910
History of Trumbull County, Harriot Taylor Upton, 1909.
Extracts, ibid, Warren Daily Tribune, 1924.
History of Mahoning County, Joseph G. Butler, Jr., 1921.
History of Wallingford, Conn., C. H. Davis, 1870.
History of Cleveland, Charles Whittlesey, 1867.
Hundred Years of Baptist History in Warren, O., Wm. Kerr, 1903.
Archaeological and Historical Society Pub., Vol. X, 190 "Gen. Ed. Paine."
Magazine of Western History, Vol. 1. "The Episcopal Church in Ohio."
of Fame, 1812-1816.
Statesmen and Hundred Year Book, W. A. Taylor, 1892
History of Western Reserve College (1826-1876), Rev. C.C. Cutler, 1876.
Western Reserve University Bulletin, Vol. XXVI, 1923, "The Derivation and
Significance of the Term Western Reserve, F. C. Waite.
Memoir of Rev. Joseph Badger (with selections from his private journal), 1851.
of Turhand Kirtland, Mary L. W. Morse, 1903.
Proceedings of the Grand Lodge of Ohio, 1808-1847.
History of Freemasonry in Ohio, W. M. Cunningham, M. A 1909.
History of Compass Lodge, No. 9 (150th Ann.), 1919.
History of the Lodge of Amity, No. 5, J. Hope Sutor, W. M 1879.
Masonic Year Book and Directory, State of Ohio, 1894.
History of Rising Sun Lodge, No. 22, F. & A. M., S. A. Pan coast, 1907.
Records of Jerusalem Lodge, No. 19, F. & A. M., Hartford O., 1812.
Tri-state Mason, August, 1924, "When, Where and How Masonry Began in Ohio"
(history of American Union and N C. Harmony Lodges), Henry Baer.
BUILDER, Vol. V, p. 294, "An Old Masonic Headston. (Calvin Austin).
BUILDER, Vol. VII, p. 36, Reference to Kirtland, O.
BUILDER, Vol. VIII, p. 201, Major-General Arthur St Clair.
Masonic News, July, 1924, "The Light That Never Failed."
Western Reserve and Its Medical Traditions (Dedicatory Address, School of
Medicine), by Dr. Harvey Cushing, Harvar, University, Western Reserve
University, Cleveland, Ohio, 1924
History of Cleveland, 1796-1896, by J. H. Kennedy.
Collegia and Comacines
BROS. A. L. KRESS AND R. J. MEEKREN
question whether there may have been an organic connection between the
Collegia of the Roman Empire and the Gilds of Medieval Europe is one that has
been much discussed, though it cannot be said that full agreement has been
reached regarding it. While perhaps true that the greater weight of Masonic
scholarship is on the negative side, yet probably the affirmative has the
larger number of adherents, and though some of these must be considered with
due respect, not a few make up in the confident dogmatism of their assertions
for the lack of real argument and historical knowledge.
weakness of the links that have so far been suggested between the gilds and
the collegia have been pointed out by a number of competent scholars, notably
Bro. Lionel Vibert and Bro. H. L. Haywood. The skeleton of the argument
usually advanced amounts to very little more than this: a certain form of
social organization existed in Roman times called collegium, in a later period
another form is found that is called a gild, and that where the latter is
found the former presumably existed. Even were there no interval in time this
would be a non sequitur, but as a matter of fact the obscurity of the Dark
Ages lies between the two, during which the Roman power was shattered in the
West of Europe, and the Medieval culture came painfully to birth.
Haywood has dealt faithfully with the collegia, and in the present state of
knowledge has left very little more to be said. (1) It may however be added
that the term collegium was not only applied to the mutual benefit and burial
societies and all kinds of social clubs, trade organizations, and those
associated for the purpose of worshipping some particular deity, but also to
official bodies, and those the oldest and most fundamental in the Roman civic
polity. The Pontifices had formed a collegium from the fabled times of Numa,
the Augurs and Haruspices another. Even the two Consuls were said to form a
college, in violation of the supposed rule that it took three at least to do
so. The fact is that the word in Latin was as general in meaning as society or
association is in English. To attempt to connect the collegia as a system with
the gilds, which were almost, if not quite as general, is entirely beside the
mark; if it could be done it would get us nowhere. what alone would be
pertinent from the Masonic point of view would be to connect a college of
architects or stoneworkers, a collegium fabri perhaps, with a gild of Masons.
For the collegiate system as a whole may have survived and been simply merged
in the gilds of a later date, or even simply turned into gilds by a change in
language, and yet the gilds of Masons have been new entities; for it could not
possibly be held that all the collegia survived, and that no new gilds were
organized. That such a thing is conceivable is borne out by some quite recent
discoveries, in North Africa of all unexpected places, which go to show that a
complex organism that has hitherto been accepted as peculiarly Medieval, that
is, the feudal manor, was in all its essentials, in full operation under the
Roman Empire. This again emphasizes the danger of building an argument on
silence or the simple lack of evidence.
However, collegium and gild being such inclusive and general terms, to say
that the first survived and was transformed into the second, is little more
than to say that men continued to have the impulse to associate themselves
together just as they continued to occupy themselves in arts and crafts and
commerce. On the other hand the one system may have disappeared, and the
social order begun anew as a whole, and yet some one special organization
might conceivably have survived--whether this could have been possible in the
case of the building crafts is a question to be considered.
FREEMASONRY DERIVES FROM GREAT BRITAIN
we come to discuss the lineage of the Masonic Institution it must be always
remembered that historically it comes from the British Isles. Any line of
descent must connect it with this restricted locale. With this in view one
line of argument has been that the collegiate system came into Britain during
Roman times, survived the invasions of Saxon and Anglo, and then blossomed out
into Masonic gilds under the Norman and Plantagenet Kings. This supposition
can, however, be almost summarily dismissed. Granting, what is not proved but
may be allowed, that the collegia fabrorum existed in Roman Britain, yet all
the evidence we have goes to show that after Rome withdrew, Roman culture
gradually succumbed and finally disappeared. The invasions from the north and
east were not the raids of chiefs bent on carving out kingdoms for themselves,
but the steady pressure of immigrants who drove the natives further and
further west, just as the Indians were displaced by the settlers in America.
In this prolonged struggle, it lasted four centuries at least, the original
Celtic population appear to have relapsed into barbarism as complete as that
of their enemies. Their towns were destroyed and in all but one or two cases
remained uninhabited. They reverted to the social state of tribe and clan, and
the only arts that survived were those necessary to life. Certainly they had
little opportunity to build in the strain of a continuous and destructive
Another line of descent has been suggested through the Eastern or Byzantine
Empire. Here, of course, there is no doubt about continuity for it was not
until the middle of the fifteenth century that Constantinople was taken by the
Turks, and till this time the Empire had held its own; and though without
doubt it was much changed, yet this was due to a process of continuous
evolution. On the other hand it must be remembered that the east was Greek,
not Roman, the population was Greek, the language was Greek and the culture
also. Here was no case of a civilized people bringing new arts to barbarians,
for all that the Romans had of art and science and literature they had in the
first place learned from the Greek. But even supposing that the collegia had
taken root in the Eastern Empire, the link that would again connect them with
the West is very weak for the strain that must be put upon it. When
Constantinople fell there was no emigration en masse, the population as a
whole remained, subject to new masters, their arts suffered a decline, but
there is no evidence that any organized bodies came to the West. Many
individuals undoubtedly did migrate, scholars and artists, and perhaps
artisans. Books and a living knowledge of the Greek language came to Italy and
materially affected the Renaissance, but there is not the slightest indication
of any movement that would have affected Craft organization, and the
probabilities are strongly against it, as at that particular time the Western
gild system was at the very height of its power and efficiency.
LOMBARDY AND PROVENCE There is left only the south of France and the north of
Italy. It is true that these are quite separate areas politically and
racially. The one was probably largely of Etruscan origin, the other
Greek--for it must be remembered that Marseilles was a flourishing Greek
colony before Rome emerges into history. However, for our present purpose the
two may be conveniently considered together. After Italy had fallen under the
domination of Rome, the next step was to take the south of France under her
wing; it was her first foreign dependency, and though many provinces were
afterwards added to her empire, this was always known simply as "The
Province," par excellence. It followed therefore that in the long and close
association this whole idea became as Roman as Rome itself. Even today the
Southern French can make shift to converse with their Italian neighbors across
the Alps, though French and Italian are now two distinct languages. In the
Middle Ages, when both dialects were much nearer the original Latin, there can
have been very little difference between them. And here it may be noted that
whatever may be true of this whole area will hold for any included district,
such as the region about Lake Como, and that this possible contact between
collegium and gild will include all that can be substantiated of the so-called
"Comacine" theory. As has been pointed out in the text, there is independent
authority that the appellation "Comacine" is not derived from Como at all, but
was "Commacine" or "Commacon," that is, fellow or associate Mason.
if we suppose a connection here between the two types of organization, we have
yet to find a link to connect it with that of the Freemasons in Britain. The
account given in the Legend of the Craft, recited with small variations in all
copies of the Old Constitutions, is to the effect that it was first introduced
by St. Alban, and later re-organized by Prince Edwin. As history this is of
course negligible, but it may echo actual facts. St. Alban himself was a Roman
soldier who was executed as being a Christian, and could not possibly have had
anything to do with the organization of Masonry directly. But what may lay at
the bottom of this story is that King Offa, when he built St. Alban's Abbey,
very probably imported Masons to execute the work. Similar recollections may
underlie the story of the assembly at York under Edwin. We know as a fact that
Saxon England was converted by a mission from Rome. Among the missionaries
were many with Gallic connections. Theodore of Tarsus was a Greek--Wilfrid was
at Lyons for some years, and he was later an energetic builder of churches and
is said to have taken about with him on his many wanderings a small body of
skilled Masons, and probably other craftsmen, such as carpenters, lead and
glass workers. There are in fact many references in the Chronicles of the
period of the bringing in of Masons from Gaul, or what would almost imply such
importation, the erecting of churches in the "Roman manner," that is in what
we would call Romanesque style, of which the Lombardic, or so-called Comacine
style, was a variety.
TRADITION OF CRAFTSMANSHIP
this, however, indicates no more than a high probability that in the craft of
building, and also in other trades, there was a continuous tradition from
Roman times. A tradition in the literal sense that each individual in the
chain, or rather network of transmission passed on the technique he had
learned from his predecessors to those who succeeded him, modifications due to
changed circumstances being at any time very slight, though the cumulative
effect over a long period would undoubtedly be very great. But this is not at
all the same thing as supposing the continuous existence of definite
organizations. For an example, the cloth working industry in England in the
Middle Ages, was very highly organized, and many gilds were concerned with it.
Today there are "Unions" of operatives and "Associations" of manufacturers,
while the occupation in spite of the great changes in methods has had a
continuous existence. But nothing is more certain than that the cloth workers'
gilds died out completely, or remained here and there as picturesque survivals
without power or influence, while the Unions and their later counterbalancing
Associations were originated de novo in an entirely altered state of society.
Thus it seems that the three forms of organization, collegium, gild and
trades-union could have successfully existed in the same place, and been
concerned in the same occupation, and yet each have been in origin quite
separate and distinct. This may actually have happened in France where the
same local industries in several cases can be shown to have continuously
persisted since Roman times.
is quite obvious that such an empty framework of possibility as is given us by
these general considerations does not help us very much. In any case, as was
pointed out above, we are not specially interested in the possible survival of
collegia in general, but whether the collegia fabrorum, the special
organization of Masons and builders survived, and before this particular case
can be usefully discussed it is necessary to arrive at some fairly definite
idea of what characteristics such an organization must have possessed if it
were to be identified as the original of the later Masonic Institution.
Rather, for practical reasons the matter must be put the other way about and
we must by some kind of analysis try to select those marks or notes which
distinguish Freemasonry not only in its present day forms but as far back as
historical evidence will take us. This is by no means an easy task; there are
many features of our speculative society now regarded as essential that have
not always been so. Neither Grand Masters nor Grand Lodges fulfill the
requirements, for before 1717 they had not been heard of. Possibly not even
the office of Master of a lodge should be included, and almost certainly not
that of Warden, in our sense of the title. The other officers are of course
all of eighteenth century devising. It may be argued on the other hand that
someone had to do the things now done by Master and Wardens, but there is a
real difference in principle between their being done by whoever happens to be
able to do them most conveniently, and assigning them to a special officer as
his peculiar function.
Lionel Vibert, in his Freemasonry Before the Existence of Grand Lodges, gives
a list of marks by possession of which the claim of anything to be the
original of, or a form of, Masonry might be judged. In doing this, Bro. Vibert
has put his finger on the weak spot in most arguments to prove the descent of
Freemasonry from this or that preceding institution, and his attempt deserves
the fullest credit, although the list in detail is not above criticism. Some
of his ten notes appearing to be really duplications and others containing
irrelevant or non-essential details, in the sense that they have not always
been necessary. Such a list as this is almost equivalent to that of those
other vague and elusive entities, the Ancient Landmarks. The difference would
seem to be that in the Landmarks, as usually understood, it is sought to
include everything now regarded as essential, while in the distinguishing
marks are only to be included those features that Masonry has always
THAT DISTINGUISH THE CRAFT
adequately discuss the matter would need far more space than can be given to
it here, but some attempt must be made to tentatively formulate such a list.
In what follows the set made out by Bro. Vibert has formed the point of
Masonic Institution is concerned, either theoretically or practically,
speculatively or operatively, with the trade or craft of building, and
especially of building in cut and carved stone; though it is a question if the
secrets of the fraternity or fellowship were always confined to stonecutters
has a peculiar local organ of protean form, for which the only known name is
the ambiguous term "lodge," and of which the only persistent characteristics
so far as can be discerned are that it must consist of a certain number of
members of the craft met together for the purpose of forming one and that they
must meet in a special place. The traditional number is seven or more, and the
place is the top of a hill or the depth of a valley. Actually in practice six
or even five members have apparently been held to suffice in an emergency, any
place secure from intrusion or interruption by outsiders to fulfill the
There has always been an extensive set of signs and other means of recognition
by which members could demonstrate their claims to the rights and privileges
of the fraternity These have undoubtedly varied a great deal, but have always
apparently been grounded in, or derived from, certain element or principles
which may be regarded as composing the essential and persistent matter in this
point. As hints as to what these essentials may have been we will mention the
left side, the number three and the square.
That new members are admitted to the society by initiatory ceremonies
carefully concealed from the profane. Just what is essential in the several
details of these ceremonies, and in the way in which they should be grouped,
is another dubious point, and one that cannot possibly be discussed in this
place, but it may be remarked in passing that it is precisely here more than
anywhere else that there seems to be some hope of throwing light on the real
antiquity of the Institution.
Members are bound by certain rules and customs, and are under obligation to
perform specified duties. These again have varied a great deal, but three
principle ones may be regarded as constant however expressed. Secrecy in
regard to the mysteries of the lodge, the duty of upholding the honor of the
Craft, and that of assisting a fellow member as far a possible.
employment of tools and implements of the operative trade as symbols,
especially the hammer or mallet, compass and square.
possession of some form of legend or myth of origin.
seven points can all be found in present-day Masonry and in pre-Grand Lodge
Masonry, and can be discerned (though more and more fragmentarily) as far back
as any historical record takes us. It may therefore be fairly taken that they
will serve as criteria by which to judge the claims made for the organic
connection of any preceding form of association with the one we know. How many
of them would be required to establish identity may be open to question. One
or two would call attention, three together might establish a prima facie
case. But the first thing that appears, if this line of approach be justified,
and at first sight a most surprising thing, is that Freemasonry has little or
nothing in common with the gild system. The gild was very local, while the
craft was general, in a sense universal. The gild was a permanent entity, part
of the local body politic, the lodge was a casual, ephemeral, elusive thing.
The gild was highly organized, the lodge had no essential organization at all
apparently. The gild was monopolistic and very exclusive, not only as against
outsiders but also against those of the craft from elsewhere. The gild did not
possess and had no need for any means of recognition, which were obviously
without use where all members were personally known to each other, and, so far
as all indications go, the ceremonies that may have been used in admitting new
members were in no way comparable or analogous to the initiatory rites of the
lodge--even in their barest and simplest form--the two things in fact not
being in the same category. In the case of regulations and laws there indeed
appears to be a resemblance both in phraseology and content, but no more than
the nature of the case would require and the fact that they are the production
of roughly the same period; while in one special point they are at complete
variance; in one the stranger craftsman was regarded with hostility, while in
the other he was, if possible, to be given work, and if not to be assisted
with money. And finally, there is no trace of any gild having a legendary
history, or of any symbolic teaching of moral duties.
apparently stops us in our search for origins at the very threshold, for if
these considerations hold good the investigation of the gild system is
irrelevant to our inquiry--unless we can discover some special feature about
this one craft that distinguished it from all others. As a matter of fact
there is such a feature, and one that has always existed in the nature of
things; the occupations connected with building, especially in reference to
large and important buildings, demand a certain mobility in those that follow
them. Take for instance a small town; two or three carpenters, one or two
masons or bricklayers, suffice for the normal needs of the community, for the
building of new houses and repairing old ones. But the erection of a church, a
palace or a bridge of any size, call at once for more men than the locality
can supply. Unlike any other occupation the work cannot be brought to the
workers, nor can it be localized in any one place. It is precisely the
migratory character of the occupation that provides a raison d' etre for the
differentia of the Mason's craft organization as laid down above. The means of
recognition, the duty of receiving and cherishing strange fellows, the casual
and inclusive character of the lodge, all fit in with this condition, which
would tend to produce and maintain these specific features in all times and
places. The conclusion then would appear to be forced on us that it is in the
loose lodge organization in which the antiquity of the Institution is to be
found. Though stable enough under the Grand Lodge system, the lodges
originally seem to have been no more permanent than the waves of the sea, yet
as alike in structure and function as are the waves, and as constantly
reappearing. And this leads to the further conclusion that whatever connection
the lodge had with the gild was purely adventitious.
this might have come about is not hard to see. In the Middle Ages every man
had a definite status and position in society, he was either serf or servant,
tenant or vassal, of some lord, or else a freeman of some town or a member of
a gild. In such a social organization the Masons would be forced into the
gilds by the outer pressure of circumstances. In large towns they might form a
gild of their own, in smaller places they would belong to one of the composite
gilds of which there were so many; while for their own private purposes the
lodge still sufficed as it always had. Just as today, Freemasons may join
together in any place and form a club. The club fills certain social
requirements and has no essential connection with the organization of the
Craft. So in the Middle Ages the lodges bound the Craft together as a whole,
but those Masons who had settled in specific localities conserved their status
and interests in the community gild.
matter of fact we find that it is only in the very largest towns that Mason's
gilds existed. Sometimes the various crafts connected with building would be
united in one gild, but as often as not Masons would share gild membership
with such incongruous trades as cobblers and the like, and even with the very
wallers and rough-masons fellowship with whom all the old MS. constitutions so
emphatically forbade. This in itself seems sufficient to show that the gild
and the secret craft organization were two quite separate and distinct
entities. In one case, in London, there appears a mysterious inner circle in
the Mason's company called the Acception, (2) in which many have seen a lodge
in some sense permanently organized, while in Scotland we actually find lodges
filling the functions of local gilds. This may seem a discrepancy but in
reality it supports the theory. The gild system was much later in establishing
itself in Scotland than in England, and the peculiar local circumstances seem
to have forced the lodges to become semi-public institutions, as in Edinburgh,
Glasgow, Aberdeen and Kilwinning.
the connection of the lodge, under whatever name it was called, with the gild
was merely temporary and external and due solely to the circumstances of the
time, and if the inherent nature of the occupation was the raison d'etre of
the lodge and all that it implies, then there is no logical reason to stop
here --the same kind of institution may have existed behind, or lain
underneath, the collegia fabrorum--and if so, there is of course no proof--it
is only a possibility, then what has persisted from then till now has been the
lodge and its mysterious rites and symbolic instruction, while collegium and
gild successively came, in the state of society, fulfilled their function that
called them forth, and disappeared when the circumstances that had brought
them into being passed away.
The Study Club. THE BUILDER for 1923. Vol. IX, p. 181.
Gould's Concise History, p. 186; Conder's "Hole Craft," p. 14. See also A. Q.
C., Vol. IX, p. 31, and Gould's large History.
L. CLEGG, Ohio
GILBERT W. DAYNES, England
H. DERN, Utah
CHARLES F. IRWIN. Ohio
E. MORCOMBE, California
FORT NEWTON, New York
C. PARKER, New York
M. WHITED, California
E. W. WILLIAMSON, Nevada
have received a copy of the report on the Tuberculosis Emergency by Bro.
Francis E. Lester, acting in the capacity of a sub-committee of the Executive
Commission of the Masonic Service Association, which was presented at the
meeting held at Chicago in November last. This makes interesting, though in
parts, painful reading. We wish that it would be possible to give it wider
Speaking of the actual situation in the Southwest Bro. Lester says: "Many [tuberculous
Masons] die without asking help. Some die because no help is given. In some
instances their home lodges reply to . . . appeals . . . that they are unable
to help them. In one such instance a lodge pleaded that it had just built a
$65,000 temple, which was not entirely paid for, therefore they could not
assist their distressed brother." This rather reminds us of the Priest and the
Levite who passed by on the other side in the Parable of the man who fell
among thieves. Bro. Lester adds, "Evidently some of the brethren are of the
opinion that their full duty is done when they shunt off their sick upon a
Masonic Lodge a thousand or more miles away. Apparently, they feel that the
sick brother's removal from their jurisdiction automatically absolves them
from their obligations to him." On the other hand (and perhaps some of these
home lodges will feel that they can share in the reflected honor to the Craft)
"The Masons of El Paso alone expend $1,000 a month for relief of sick Masons
and the members of their families, all of whom are non-residents, and have
averaged that amount for the last thirty-four months." These El Paso brethren,
however, are obviously not up-to-date. Had they applied that money differently
they might have had a $65,000 temple more than half paid for. However, perhaps
they are erecting one "not made with hands" of greater value still.
lodge secretaries we learn take the simple method of not replying to appeals.
This saves a great deal of trouble. One lodge refused help because the brother
in question was behind with his dues. It is strictly constitutional and legal
to suspend a brother who does not pay his dues, and a suspended Mason has no
claim on his lodge or on the Craft. The fact that he is ill and destitute of
course does not enter into the legal aspect of the case at all. In another
case the home lodge refused help when appealed to by a New Mexico lodge, and
so the latter took it up with the sick brother's Elk's Club. Many Masons
rather look down on this organization as an upstart and imitation society.
However, they sent $250 to pay hospital bills. It must have been pleasant for
the New Mexico brethren to make this request of an outside organization -
"Please help this man because his Masonic Lodge won't."
close of the report Bro. Lester says in reference to the recent action of the
Grand Lodge of New Mexico:
Mexico has waited for some other Grand Jurisdiction better qualified in point
of numbers and wealth, with leaders of national reputation, to assume the
responsibility of leadership. We have waited for the Masonic Service
Association to act, as they were requested to do by the Grand Lodge of Texas
last December. When all others failed, we were compelled to action.
Mexico does not seek to lead. We have but furnished the agency, the legal
entity, to carry on this work. We ask for help in organization, and
management. We will welcome as leaders the brethren of other Grand
Jurisdictions. The plan of organization provides for participation of all
Grand Lodges and of the higher bodies of Masonry, the Shrine and Eastern Star.
Above all we ask the help of the Masonic Service Association in any way that
you may decide to aid us."
Grand Lodge of New Mexico may be comparatively weak in numbers and financial
ability, but in true Masonic spirit she is strong, and has shown herself
worthy of leadership. The rest of us may well be ashamed, and yet glad that
there yet remains in the American Craft some realization of what Freemasonry
essentially stands for.
* * *
a strongly ingrained habit, perhaps instinct were the better word, for frail
humanity to think that at the beginning of a new cycle or period of time -
tomorrow, next week, or the beginning of a New Year - things can be improved,
that we can act more wisely, more virtuously and be happier -
touching trait, that even the most cynical and disillusioned feel when off
their guard, is another evidence of what poets have so often told us that men
and women are only children of larger growth. What magic do we look for in a
point of time, quite arbitrarily chosen, that beyond it we shall be more
heroic, stronger, more resolute - yet we go on pathetically making good
resolutions which, in the drab reality of the old year, it seems that we shall
be able to carry out easily in the bright atmosphere of the new. "Hope springs
eternal - " and it is well that it is so for most of us, for few would have
the courage to go on without the alluring glamour of what we desire the future
is of course a certain psychological effect in saying that on Jan. 1 we shall
begin to do this or cease to do that - it is similar to the tension in the
racer's muscles at the words "Are you set?" when he waits for the measured
rhythm of the "one-two-bang" of the starter's pistol. And again there is the
taking stock aspect of the matter, so strongly emphasized by that apostle of
common sense, Benjamin Franklin. It is well to look back and see what we have
actually done - what was done amiss, too much by far usually - what was left
undone - and how much was actually well done of all that was possible. And
having struck a balance, to thus discover what faults and failings need
remedy, and where and how our efforts may be best applied. This is all to the
the "Do it now" signs that not long since were so frequently seen in offices
and other places where men gathered for co-ordinated labor, showed that the
time to change is the present, this very moment. "Tomorrow is also a day," say
the orientals - and it is true, but it may not be our day. This day, this
hour, this is ours and in it we have power to act, and it is now that we must
begin the wearisome drudgery with the common gavel - most primitive of tools -
to knock off the excrescences, to put away the vices and superfluities, if
ever we hope that the rough ashlar of our life and character is to be made a
squared and polished stone fit for the wall of the Temple.
today is also the beginning of the New Year - then "let us here highly
resolve," in Lincoln's famous phrase, that today and all the coming days we
shall do the things we ought to do and leave undone those we ought not.
* * *
CO‑OPERATION IN RESEARCH
every man and especially every Mason had not enough resolutions to make on his
own account we are going to suggest some more for the members of our Society
as such; all good men and true and "right Masons" as the old phrase ran.
emphasis in the past has been strongly laid on the value of membership in the
N.M.R.S. to the individual Mason. For his subscription he was entitled to such
and such privileges - to receive the official journal, THE BUILDER, to have
his questions answered, to have book titles suggested, to be put in
communication with other brethren, authorities in special branches of Masonic
study, and all the rest. Now we suggest that our members - some of them do not
need this exhortation and are excused from reading further - think also of
what they might do for the Society. Let us first make clear that this is not
an appeal for a membership drive or any other "stunt" for obtaining more
funds. Financial lubricant is of course absolutely necessary for the wheels of
the organization to run, but this is so obvious that we need waste no time in
speaking of it. Also it is quite true that with a larger membership there
would be a larger income, and more could be done - of the things that it takes
money to do. But money is far from being everything, even in our
commercial-credit type of civilization, and the things we have in mind are
precisely those that can be done perfectly well without it.
however, we will make a digression – the reason for it may appear later.
Scholarship today is slowly and reluctantly following commerce and manufacture
in becoming an affair of team‑work. In earlier ages the various trades were
individual. The local blacksmiths made everything that was needed of metal,
the carpenters all that was required of wood, and so on. Such division of
labor as existed was of the simplest kind - the smiths became gold, copper,
sword, white and black. The carpenters divided into several kinds of joiners,
cabinet‑makers, ark‑wrights and the like. So with commerce - did a merchant
want certain goods, he went to where they were made and brought them back
himself on his own pack horses or his own boats. Was there a great fair
somewhere, he took his goods to it and sold them direct. More and more has
that simple state of affairs died out - even the farmer, the last great
producer to admit the change, is becoming a specialist - and today men buy and
sell things they never see, they handle goods that have come by routes they
hardly know, and dispatch them by others as obscure to customers who are but
names. Money, too, does not return from the transaction, but only written
promises, often by some unknown person, to pay other persons something,
somewhere at some time. It is wonderful when one mentally stands back and
looks at it all as it really is, and not as part of the habitual shell or
track of his own life - but this must not detain us from our survey. The
student, however, lagged behind. He still went about his business in the old
way. True, as new sciences sprang up, he was obliged to specialize, but
nevertheless he tried to know everything in his own field. However, with the
press to print his discoveries, with philosophical and scientific societies to
assist him in publication, It has become obvious (not too rapidly) that if one
man finds out something new it is better to explain it to everyone else
concerned, that after it has been tested and confirmed everyone may go on from
that point to new researches. This is perhaps putting the matter rather
clumsily - using very thick lines for the sketch - but such a development has
been going on.
there is no real use in "kidding" ourselves about Masonry. It is naturally of
great interest to Masons, that is to some Masons - or would it be better to
say to those who are Masons and not merely members? - but even in America
where the Craft is, numerically, stronger than anywhere else in the world we
are but a bare 3 per cent of the population. Masonic problems therefore cannot
be regarded as being from the world point of view of very great importance. Be
it fully understood that we are not here considering the possible influence
Masonry may have on the world at large, direct or indirect, but are merely
attempting to estimate its place in the world of scholarship as a subject for
research and study. Nevertheless, even if its importance is limited it has
certain advantages and attractions to the student. In the first place there is
more room than in most other fields of research, there is still much pioneer
work to do, still many parts of the terrain uncultivated and scarcely even
explored, and in those that are, there still remains plenty of room for more
Masonry can be made, and in its modern form was designed to make, a starting
point into many other fields of study. We have been stressing this aspect
lately, but it can hardly be over‑emphasized. It is generally admitted that in
these days of universal education the great mass of people are not, strictly
speaking, educated at all. They have learned their daily business - out of
school. In school they learned to read and write and how to add and subtract
figures, the rest is a confused mass of vague recollections and a lively
prejudice against all intellectual pursuits as a deadly bore. They have
learned to read, but not to enjoy reading; they have learned to write, but not
to write down their opinions or judgment of any subject. However, we are not
here concerned with the deficiencies of the modern systems and curricula of
our schools, we desire merely to point out their admitted results in order to
bring out the practical value of the fact that the Masonic system was
developed in such a way as to make it a possible starting point for
self‑education - of education, not as it is now‑a‑days so generally and
lopsidedly understood, a training to make more money, but in its true sense of
developing the mind so that the individual can get greater and truer
satisfaction and enjoyment out of life. That is to say the Masonic Institution
offers its initiates (among other things) another intellectual opportunity,
such as too many of us failed to see or grasp at school or college, of
entering the magic realm of pure intellectual pleasure, where we may exercise
the powers of the mind, hunt for obscure facts, puzzle out tangled skeins of
tradition as intricate as any murder mystery - a delight that grows greater as
the years pass, that never gets stale and that no reverse of fortune can take
from us. Once started on such an enterprise we find the need for bricks to
erect our theories, we dig clay in the pits by Zarthan or Zeredatha - but like
the Israelites in Egypt discover the need of straw. This we have to go and
seek in other fields, and the further we go the wider the prospect; and in the
end, like Saul, having set out to seek for a few donkeys we find a Kingdom.
made this lengthy detour we will now scramble back to the path on which we set
out. Limited as the field of purely Masonic research may be, yet it is large
enough and full enough to give any man full scope to his powers, and it has
gateways like the Temple opening to every point of the compass.
of the work that needs to be done can be done by co‑operation. As we have been
dealing in figures and metaphors let us consider the intelligence department
of an army. It is its eyes and ears and brain. Information comes in from
hundreds of sources, official reports, civilian rumors, spies, diplomatic
agents and many others. Much of it is utterly useless by itself, much
unintelligible, trivial, doubtful, misleading - but sorted out and pieced
together it enables the general officer commanding to make his plans not
altogether blindly and in the dark. The National Research Society has the
machinery, by no means fully utilized, to become an intelligence department
for the Craft; from which as from an unlimited bank credit, checks may be
drawn at will. It is for this reason that we reproduce Bro. Lepper's article
in the present number. He has outlined the plan of action simply and directly;
it could not possibly be bettered. In this way the members or the Society can
actively help in the work. A number of brethren have been doing this, but with
everyone helping remarkable results might be achieved.
Lepper confined himself chiefly to extracts and quotations from books. Of
these we receive very few, but, such matter would be of the greatest value
when classified and filed. Such extracts should always of course be fully
identified. Not only the title of the book and the author and the page, but
also the edition, date and publisher; where any of these are not given, as
unfortunately is sometimes the case, the fact should be noted.
Another very desirable class of information would be titles of books that have
been read that might directly or indirectly interest the Masonic reader, with
a brief account of the subject‑matter, enough to tell what it is about. Here
again author and publisher should be mentioned.
account of old lodges, old minutes, by‑laws, or other documents might be
described, their condition and custodians.
Clippings from newspapers or magazines; of these we get a good many sent us,
and on this head we will lay the least stress. An editorial office is usually
cluttered up with exchanges, and clipping these forms a never-ending
occupation for the leisure moments of the staff. Clippings should always be
identified - name of periodical, place published and date.
Pictures and portraits are desirable, though perhaps in general not so likely
to be called for unless of peculiar interest.
we may suggest that copies of addresses on special subjects, or notes for
talks to Masonic gatherings would be very useful. Many brethren get material
from us for these, but few have ever thought to send us any intimation of how
they used it. It would be of great advantage oftentimes to a brother who had
to speak at short notice, to have not only material, but also outlines of how
it could be used.
such matter as this could be sent in, and anything else that may suggest
itself as possibly of interest. Even if, as will doubtless happen, much comes
in duplicate there will be no harm done, and some statistical information may
even be drawn from it that at some time would be valuable.
such lines as these the work of the Society would become definitely
co-operative. There would perhaps be less super-eminence for the individual
student here and there working alone, but there would be an increased feeling
of solidarity, of common interest, and also of greater efficiency. From all
these points of view it seems quite worth while to ask our active members to
add to their list of things to be done in the New Year this of making a note
of any item of possible Masonic interest as we have suggested above and
passing it on to us. Naturally there will be a good deal of duplication but it
will be better to receive the same information from several quarters than not
to have it at all.
BRO. R. J. Meekren
begin with it is necessary to state very plainly that practically nothing is
known about the private, or as it might be termed, the esoteric symbolism of
the Medieval Masons. It has been shown in the two preceding articles that so
far as their abilities went our Operative predecessors might have had a system
of symbols of any degree of complexity they desired. They recorded in carved
stone, not once nor twice, but hundreds and thousands of times their
possession of constructive imagination, of spiritual insight and perhaps even
the mystical temper that fully qualified them as a group to work out a system
of philosophy, veiled or clothed in allegory and set out by emblems and
symbols. Those who are inclined to dismiss this possibility by speaking of
them as mere ignorant workmen have not fully appreciated the realities of the
situation. As has been intimated, the organization contained in its ranks
precisely the same kind of men who in our own day are the true leaders of
civilization--artists, sculptors, engineers, scientists. There is not the
least indication that the proportion of men of genius has varied much in the
few thousand years about which history is able to tell us anything. Even
prehistoric man seems to have had mental powers quite equal to the average
today. Civilization, our own as well as those that have preceded it, is the
result of social organization and corporate activity. It is all a matter of
the opportunity afforded by the environment. The men who invented the sling or
the bow and arrow rank mentally with those who in our day have made telegraphs
and telephones, automobiles and aeroplanes. The actual result depends on what
the individual was given to work with -measured that way the most stupendous
inventions in the history of the race were of the individuals who first
discovered the uses of a sharp edged stone or how to light and feed a fire.
The Medieval Mason, even the obscure workman, would probably have surprised
many of those who incline to dismiss with uninformed contempt his claims to a
real share in the secrets and organization of the Fraternity to which he
belonged. The Masons were men of their age naturally, as we are of ours, they
labored under the limitations of the state of society in which they lived, as
we also do. We do not easily realize these limitations in our own case, though
we very plainly see (or think we see) theirs-which in their day they also took
as a matter of course, and as part of the eternal scheme of things. For
example, most of them probably could not read or write. To us to be ignorant
of letters is to be quite uneducated. It was not so then. We have multitudes
of books, and learn a great deal from them--their books were scarce, and as
much valuable works of art as intended for use; while society was built up on
a system of oral and traditional teaching. In our dependence on books we have
lost very largely the organization and mental habits of the earlier system,
and it is difficult for us to realize how very efficient it was within its
limits. If the Masons could not read neither could the great lords, princes
and kings who employed them. Yet there is not the least doubt that the
majority of them, both kings and craftsmen, were quite capable men and as
fully adequate for their various jobs as those who fulfill equivalent
functions in the world of today.
having thus noted the possibilities what can we say of the actualities ? Very
little indeed. All we have to go on are a very few contemporary allusions, a
few Masonic devices on tombstones, in stained glass windows and the like; the
MS. Constitutions or Old Charges, and precarious deductions from post Grand
Lodge lectures and catechisms. A most unpromising outlook and it is little
wonder that enthusiastic writers have turned to Hermetic, Rosicrucian,
Kabbalistic, Neo-platonic, and other mystical and more or less esoteric
systems to fill out the gaps in our knowledge of the inside of Operative
these studies we have up until now dealt with symbolism in the most general
way. The primary object was to show that the principles and modes of thought
underlying the use of symbols, even of the most abstruse or recondite nature,
are exactly the same in kind as those involved in all the ordinary usages of
speech and representation, in which one thing is put for another, part for
whole, individual for species and the like; that the differences to be noted
in the varying meanings of the word, and of those other words more or less
synonymous with it, are differences of degree and not of kind, of quantity
rather than essential quality. Now however that we approach the esoteric side
it may be as well for the sake of clearness and brevity to define and
distinguish the various grades. Without any underlying symbolical intent we
may suggest three of these, and following ordinary usage quite closely we may
designate them as devices, emblems and symbols proper. It would be possible to
borrow from the mathematicians and devise new characters entirely, as letter S
= symbolism in general, and then distinguish our grades as S1, S2, and S3. The
advantage of this kind of symbolism is its precision. The characters have no
associations at all, or at least none related to the assigned meaning--it is
always necessary to refer back to the definition or assumption with which the
argument began. But though there is a symbolical logic, the method is not a
literary one, and the first suggested terms will serve our purpose. A "device"
then may be defined as a distinguishing mark pure and simple. The attributes
that are given to effigies of Christian saints and statues of pagan deities
are devices, so are coats of arms and crests, seals and trademarks, including
Mason's marks. They are labels, pictographs, or ideographs, telling us who or
what is represented.
"emblem" goes further than this, though the border line is not very distinct.
An emblem is a device or attribute that is not arbitrary, but that is used to
recall some idea or thing through a remembered association with it. Thus in
the lectures of the Third Degree the sun and moon and stars are emblems, for
their representations simply serve to recall the phraseology of that part of
the ritual. The emblems of mortality are in like case, though they verge
closely on what we shall call symbolism proper. This latter we shall apply
when the meaning goes beyond a simple and direct association. Perhaps the
easiest method of definition here will be by example. The square and compasses
as used ordinarily in the form of a personal ornament or badge, is a device
pure and simple. It is equivalent to saying or writing "I am a Mason," or
"this is Masonic." The working tools used on old tombstones or in Medieval
representations of Masons are in the same class. Although working tools will
easily become emblems to the Mason, as they recall various associations of
Craft experience. The square (with us) designates the Master, and insofar is
an emblem. In old usage the Master was known rather by the compasses.
Together, according to certain conventions, these two implements are
emblematic of the first three degrees. This use being more than a mere device,
as it depends on certain important associations with the particular
arrangement, puts them in this case into the class of emblems. But the square
and compasses are also use as symbols when the primary associations are
extended, and we talk of the square of virtue or of keeping within compass of
the circle of our duties to God and man.
MASONIC DESIGNS DISCUSSED
period over which we have to glance is an extended one, from the thirteenth to
the seventeenth century. It might be possible to go back further--the emblems
on the eighth century tomb shown on page 345 in the November number of THE
BUILDER last year, are evidence of this--but little would be gained by doing
so. No collection of Masonic devices of this kind has ever been published, and
they have to be sought in many different quarters. The window from Or San
Michele at Florence (reproduced on page 314, October, 1925) is a good example,
showing trowel mallet and chisels, compasses and level. The axe in the center
is rather a carpenter's tool. In the window from Chartres, of which a sketch
is here shown, we have a very interesting collection. The trowel, square,
"common gavel", or stonemason's hammer, finishing or "bush" hammer with a
series of sharp parallel edges cut on the face, what is apparently intended
for a hod or mortar board, a "common" square, and a "moul square", or templet
for curved work, a triangular level and besides these there seems to be the
representation of the base and capital of a column fully cut, two detail
drawings or profiles of vault ribs or "mould stones, and the drawing of a
column with base an capital. But illuminating as this is as to the technic
methods and tools in use at the time, it can hardly b supposed to be
symbolical in our restricted sense o the word. It is probably most correctly
to be termed a Masonic device pure and simple, though it may be considered as
verging on the emblematic.
are quite a number of Medieval drawings or paintings in existence showing
masons at work, an portraits or effigies of Master Masons; three such were
given in THE BUILDER last year (August, 229, 230) and there are others to be
found in some editions of Gould's History and more in Ars Quatuor Coronatorum.
Where the Master Mason or Master of the Work is shown we find generally that
he is distinguished particularly by the compasses. If he has the square, he
almost always has the compasses as well, but he is frequently shown with the
latter alone. In some cases he is shown holding the model of a building,
presumably one elected or designed by him, and in one case at least the plan
of a church is shown among the emblems.
of the Medieval gilds took to themselves, or had granted to them, coats of
arms. Those of the Mason's Company of London are well known, and appear to
have been used, sometimes with a heraldic "difference", by the Masons
generally all over Britain. The chevron, originally engrailed (i.e. with a
wavy border) is a regular and frequently used "charge" in coats of arms, but
may here have been taken as suggesting a square. In later representations it
was shown plain, thus more closely approximating the working tool. The gilds,
and many individual masters also used seals, and of these many are still
extant, the greater number of them show stone hammers, compasses and levels,
the square seems not to be used so much .
seal of the Masons of Cologne shows three crowns above two pairs of crossed
hammers and crossed axes respectively, in allusion to the crowned martyrs
presumably, though these sculptor masons were supported to be four in number,
according to the usual version of their story at least. An individual Mason's
seal from Strasburg shows a shield charged with a "bend dexter" (i.e. a
diagonal band from the upper left-hand corner to the lower right) on which are
three stone hammers, which seems to be an echo of the arms of the Masons' gild
of the same place, in which also appears a bend with two hammers, while the
shield is also charged with a level, of very workman-like form, and a pair of
compasses slightly opened. Seals of carpenters' gilds also generally show the
compasses and square, with an axe. Tilers and plasterers show trowels and
their special form of long-pened hammer. The tilers are also fond of using the
ladder as a device.
GENERALLY USED AS DEVICES
this there is little that has the appearance of symbolism-they are apparently
devices and nothing more. It is still the custom in Germany to put on a
skilled workman's tombstone some of the implements of his trade, and they are
much the same devices as we see in the Medieval examples. For a carpenter,
saw, hammer, plane and compasses; for a mason, hammer, and square and
compasses; a plasterer, trowel and hod a blacksmith, hammer and tongs; for a
fireman, helmet, axe and pike pole. In France the carpenters use the square
and compasses as commonly as the working Masons. There is one Medieval
example, the seal of the Masons of Tours, one of the towns where the
Compagnonage was strong, which shows a serpent of gold intertwined with a
rule, square and compasses. This looks mysterious and symbolic, but may very
likely have some local reference like the three clowns of Cologne mentioned
above. The very curious "mark" of the Magdeburg Smiths may also be mentioned
here, described by Gould (following Berlepsch's Chronicle of the Trades) as
being used in opening and closing their meetings. It was drawn in chalk on the
table, and rubbed out at the close. It reminds one of the diagram of the
lodge; but the analogy is not very close, though in both cases the diagram
seems, in part at least, to have symbolized the organization itself.
other hand the processes and implements connected with building seem so
naturally adapted to serve as symbols of morality that it seems hardly
credible that the Masons should not have so used them to some extent. It is
possible that a close and critical study of these old designs might give some
clue in this direction though in the present state of our knowledge we are
forced to admit that there is but the very slightest indications of it. One
other point may be touched on in passing. The statement has been made, and
often repeated, that numbers of Medieval statues and other representations of
human figures are posed in positions corresponding to certain gestures
familiar to present day Freemasons. For example, it is said that there are
such figures over the main entrance of the Minster at York, and that certain
statues placed in niches flanking a side entrance of the Cathedral at Florence
stand in "Masonic attitudes." This is exceedingly doubtful. The attitudes of
the last mentioned figures are fully to be accounted for by the ritual
gestures used in the Catholic Church. The statues are mitred and in
ecclesiastical robes and presumably represent bishops in the attitude of
giving benediction. In any case this would hardly be symbolism but rather
return; we intimated above that there was a natural fitness of builders' tools
to symbolic employment. It would of course be possible to draw moral lessons
from other crafts. The potter and his wheel have been so employed--imagery and
allegory drawn from these was used by Jeremiah, Isaiah and St. Paul, and also
by the Persian poet Omar. The operations and implements of husbandry have so
been used, as notably in several of Our Lord's parables. Metal working again
lends itself to such treatment--the silver seven times tried in the fire, the
iron forged and welded on the anvil. Still of all occupations that of the
builders seems to be most frequently employed. The Chinese, as has often been
repeated, used level, square and compasses in a figurate sense for different
virtues. The plumb line in Amos is used as a symbol of justice. Square-ness is
a common metaphor in many languages for dependable honesty and morality. The
level represents impartiality like the balances as well as social equality;
the compasses symbolize knowledge and prudence. By them accurate measurements
are taken, and by the exact knowledge thus obtained conduct may be guided. In
several extant allegorical drawings the compasses are put in the hands of the
figure of Christ, denoting His creative power, as Master Builder of the World,
and He is Himself spoken of in the New Testament as the chief headstone of the
WORKING TOOLS "MORALIZED"
is all so obvious and natural that in an age that was devoted to symbolism,
and among men whose occupation largely consisted in designing symbols, it is
hard to imagine how they could have failed to see and adopt these
possibilities of their own craft implements. That they did so is actually
indicated by a few well known examples. There is the inscription said to be at
Bale accompanying figures of two of the crowned martyrs, which translated runs
Square possesses science enough
use it always with propriety.
level teaches the true faith
Therefore it is to be treasured.
Justice and the compass' science-
boots naught to establish them.
gauge is fine and scientific
used by great and small.
According to Gould the same couplets are also found, in more modern
phraseology, on the chest or ark belonging at one time to the Hamburg Masons.
we have the much quoted inscription at Melrose in conjunction with a shield
bearing two partly opened crossed compasses and three fleur-de-lis:
gays ye compas evyn aboute truith and laute do but
be haulde to ye hende qo johne mordo.
might be rendered:
goes the compass undeviating around
without doubt do truth and loyalty;
well to the end quoth John Mordo.
there is the quotation from a German work of 1623 by J. V. Andreae, a German
scholar of note, the pertinent part of which is translated as follows:
. . .
can none foresee his end
on God is built his hope
we here below would learn
Compass, Needle, Square and Plumb
ne'er must overlook the mete
Wherewith our God hath measured us.
lastly we may mention the brass square found in rebuilding Baal Bridge at
Limerick, Ireland, which seems to have been a foundation deposit or something
of the kind. It is said not to be adapted for actual use, the arms being only
four and a half inches long. On it is the couplet, which also has been often
strive to live with love and care
the level by the square.
together with the date 1517. The spelling here is of course modernized. There
is, it must be confessed, some doubt about the real age and genuine character
of this relic. Still these quotations indicate that the Operative Masons did
apparently "moralize" their working tools, and though so scanty in quantity
the inherent probability of their doing so is so strong that it is difficult
to refuse to accept the conclusion pointed at.
SYMBOLISM ORIGINATED IN THE CRAFT
quotation from Andreae given above raises a question as to the origin of such
symbolism. Certain Masonic writers have very confidently asserted that the
Operatives borrowed all they ever had from Rosicrucian and Hermetic sources.
On page 384 of THE BUILDER for 1924 is reproduced a wood cut illustrating a
1547 edition of Vitruvius' work on architecture, from which the architectural
explanations in our lecture are largely taken. In this drawing a great many
tool and instruments are shown, most of them apparently pertaining to
laboratory work, though the level, square, compasses and templets can be
allotted to mason craft. The theodolite or levelling instrument is rather for
engineering than building, however. Such designs a these are frequently to be
found in Hermetic works, and it has therefore been assumed that their use
there was symbolic, and that naturally these philosopher and mystical
scientists must have first originated the symbolical use of the Operative
implements often included. This is rather putting the cart before the horse.
The other half of this argument is that the Operative Masons being mere
workmen, common, ignorant, uneducated men, could not have done this by
themselves. Of this latter premise we have already sufficiently disposed, and
all we have to ask now is who was the more likely to see the symbolic
possibilities of these tools--the men who used them every day or those whose
knowledge of them was but casual an theoretic? It is far more likely that the
would-be Rosicrucians borrowed these from the Masons than vice versa. In
strict truth there is no necessity to suppose that there was borrowing either
way. If, and there are known Medieval examples of this, a preacher in a sermon
uses metaphorical language based or building or mason's craft there is no need
to suppose either that the preacher was a Mason or his hearer specially
interested in that subject. It is as likely that he got his inspiration for
such figures of speech or allegorical language from the New Testament, or from
the Shepherd of Hermas, as anywhere else; and as we have already noted, the
symbolism is so apt, so natural that it appeals to every mind at once without
any special knowledge. An example of such esoteric symbolism as this is to be
found in Le Pelerinage de I'Homme (The Pilgrimage of Man) by Guillaume de
Guileville, printed at Paris in 1511 but written in 1330. This was brought to
the attention of Masonic students in a paper by W. H. Rylands published in A.
Q. C. in 1900. In this work appears a wood cut showing a "gallows" square with
the long arm perpendicular and the short one horizontal, the angle being at
the top. On the lower end of the long arm is the letter P, at the angle, A,
and at the end of the short arm X. Besides these initials are smaller letters
against each one, spelling the words respectively proximo, anime and XP0, the
first two meaning "neighbor" and "soul" or "spirit", while the latter is an
abbreviation for the Greek Christos. Then, roughly parallel to the line
between the two extremities of the arms of the square come the words pax
triplex, "threefold peace." The three initials also spelling Pax. In verses
accompanying it an explanation is given, which is roughly that X, for Christ,
is set above or on high in the most prominent position (the phrase in the
original is en eschauf faut and there may here be a double meaning intended,
the word also meaning scaffold and may obscurely allude to Christ on the
Cross) then the soul of man attains peace by faith in Christ, and having peace
with God is naturally also at peace with his neighbor.
the square sets forth a rule of right living by which "the peace that passeth
understanding" is attained. This is very interesting indeed, and could we be
sure that the idea came from Craft sources would surely settle the question as
to the existence of moralizing on the working tools. Unfortunately there is
nothing to show this, and it rather seems that this "square," so-called, is
simply regarded as part of a Latin cross, the cross of crucifixion. Although
if this be so, it is curious that it should be thus taken only in part, and it
is legitimate perhaps to suspect that the monk who set it forth saw the
craftsman's square in the cross.
DOCUMENTARY EVIDENCE CONSIDERED
have two more possible sources of information yet to consider, both
documentary. One is the group of old MS. called variously "Charges" or
"Constitutions" and the other are the old catechisms. These latter
unfortunately are all, with one possible exception, Sloane 3329, later than
1717, the year of the inception of the Grand Lodge organization of the
Fraternity-and the date of this document is doubtful, it may be later though
is possibly earlier. The question of its age has been discussed most
frequently with a view to its contents, so that much of the argument is open
to the suspicion of unconscious bias. But the consideration of these documents
must be left for future consideration. The "Old Charges" are most of them
undoubtedly pre-Grand Lodge, and some are very old. Their character is well
known to most readers of THE BUILDER, one of them, the York Roll, No. 1, was
reproduced in the December number for 1923 (Vol. IX, p. 371) They are all very
much alike in content, and from the point of view of our inquiry very
disappointing, for there is practically nothing to be found in any of them
that can by any means be made into an allusion to symbolism. There is the
curious phrase in the so called Charter of Scoon and Perth Lodge, which
according to Gould combines features of the Old Charges with items of local
interest, "soe long as the Sun ryseth in East and Setteth in the West." As
Gould remarks this reference "to the glorious luminary" will at least arrest
the attention of the Masonic student, but the meaning of the figure is so
clear and obvious, that the members of the lodge who subscribed to the
document; bound themselves and successors to observe it forever, that it will
hardly serve as a foundation for any Speculative theory.
there is the provision in the Melrose MS. No. 19, that no Master or fellow
should in dealing with "Loses" (Cowans) "let yms know ye privilege of ye
compass, Square, levell and ye plum-rule." This sounds as if it might refer to
Speculative teaching were it not immediately followed by the injunction that
instead they were "to sett out their plumming to them . . ," which makes it
clear that it was simply the technical use of the implements that was to be
kept from the unskilled workmen. A modern trade's unionist would quite
understand the rule, and acts upon it. The half-skilled laborer who is allowed
to fill in a wall builds to a line that is put up for him, he is by no means
encouraged to put one up for himself.
question that must now be asked is what are we to conclude from the absence in
these old and well accredited documents of any reference to symbolism? An
argument from silence can never be quite conclusive, for it is a form of the
negative argument which can only be absolute when every conceivable source of
information has been examined, and such completeness is itself impossible.
What we have to ask is first whether the source of information, the document
or witness, would most naturally have mentioned the point in question had it
existed; that is would we have to seek some special reason for the silence in
such a case. This means that the purpose of the informant must be appraised.
In our particular case this purpose seems clear. The documents in question
give us a mythical history of the Mason craft as an introduction to a code of
rules or charges to be observed by Masons. The history is designed to heighten
the esteem of its members for their organization by showing its antiquity, and
also their respect for its laws by the wisdom and eminence of the rulers who
ordained them. And generally the information was for the benefit of new
members, which is as clear from the phraseology as also from certain rubrical
directions. Would it not therefore have been most natural, this being the
purpose, that any other instruction there was to give about symbolism should
also be included? This is hard to say. We can fall back on the negative
feature and say not necessarily so. Yet it is hard to say it would not have
been natural to have included such information had it existed. On the other
hand, that there was other information is certain, for there is no technical
instruction which must have been given to the apprentice, and is alluded to.
To this it may be said that this instruction could not have been imparted
ceremonially but only day by day in actual work. But again it is practically
certain there were secret means of recognition which in general are not
distinctly alluded to in the old charges, and it can well be argued that the
symbolism was imparted in the same way as these last. It is, therefore,
perhaps safest to take the position that this evidence is quite neutral for
our present inquiry. How then are we to sum up what has gone before? Much of
the evidence cited above could be accounted for by purely personal ideas--that
John Murdo, for example, knew of no craft symbolism but took what to him was a
natural figure to express a moral sentiment. Little as we may like such an
inconclusive answer it seems to be all that we can so far safely assert,
whatever else may seem to us possible or probable.
QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION
was the real status, mental and social, of the Medieval Freemasons ?
the old designs and representations found on tombs and in ornamental carving
susceptible of symbolic interpretation? Why should metaphors. and figures of
speech be so easily adapted to moral interpretation ?
did the designers of the illustrations Hermetic and other books include craft
implements among them?
the evidence of the Old Charges be properly regarded as neutral in respect to
the possibility of esoteric symbolism among Operative Masons?
FREEMASONRY IN MANITOBA 1864-1925. By William Douglas, P.D.G.M., Manitoba.
Published by the Research Committee of the Grand Lodge of Manitoba, A. F. & A.
M., Winnipeg, Manitoba. May be purchased through the Book Department of the
National Masonic Research Society, 1950 Railway Exchange, St. Louis, Mo.
Cloth, 12 mot, 266 pages illustrated. Price, postpaid, $2.65.
attractive volume like the one under consideration is a delight to the
reviewer of Masonic literature. It immediately impresses one as a real book,
because binding, format and printing give a feel to the volume which begets
confidence in its contents - a confidence that is fully justified when one
reads the text. It is a book which a Masonic bibliophile is inclined to slip
under his arm and forget to return to its owner. Bro. William Douglas' history
comes like a ray of sunshine because of it I can truly say the good things
earnestly desired, but denied me, when examining other recent Masonic
histories of the current year.
apparent, from even a cursory examination of the volume, that the author has a
real sense of values. The table of contents clearly indicates that a definite
and progressive outline was adhered to, and in his introduction Bro. William
Douglas shows how discriminatingly he selected his material:
quite possible to divide the subject matter to a greater extent, but the
purpose of presenting the authentic history of Freemasonry in Manitoba can be
well served by following this outline. I have purposely refrained from quoting
too freely from Lodge minute books, as otherwise we might obtain a somewhat
formidable volume. My purpose has been to glean from the early minute books
the story of the Craft, and I have endeavored to co‑relate the facts and
present the story in readable form.... Where reference is by quotation the
text has been closely followed and statements of historical facts, not
generally known, are supported by references to the sources from which the
information was obtained.
proper setting for the story Bro. Douglas unfolds is given in a brief sketch
of early Northwest history. Needless to say, the Hudson's Bay Company played
an important part in the development of Manitoba, Verandrye having established
Fort Rouge at the junction of the Assiniboine and Red Rivers in 1738. Fort
Garry, the nucleus of the present city of Winnipeg, was built in 1821. In 1859
a store was erected by McKinney and Co. on a location outside of the control
of the existing trading companies. This firm was soon followed by other
enterprises, among them the first newspaper of the Red River Settlement - "The
Nor'‑Wester," which made its appearance Dee. 28, 1859. The issue of Nov. 2,
1864, announced the meeting of Northern Light Lodge to take place Nov. 8,
which was followed by the first regular meeting on Nov. 14, held under a
dispensation obtained from the Grand Lodge of Minnesota May 20, 1864. An early
writer states that no opposition was encountered in the community except that
of the Roman Catholic priests and a few anonymous writers who feared to make
their identity known. The lodge continued to meet until April 16, 1866; to
tell more of its meagre history, developed to the fullest advantage by the
able author, would rob the reader of the book itself of an entrancing hour.
Yet the following should be quoted:
opportune to recall the feet that the founders of Northern Light Lodge when
that Lodge met at Fort Pembina, over the International Boundary line, and by
whom Freemasonry was introduced into this Province, were of the military
profession. It was originally a military Lodge. All the members who subseribed
to the petition for the dispensation to the Grand Lodge of Minnesota were
United States soldiers belonging to the squadron drafted for duty at Fort
Pembina. The revival of Freemasonry in Fort Garry took place in 1870 by the
institution of Prince Rupert's Lodge, and it is an interesting coincidence
that all the charter members subscribing to the petition, and requesting
letters to permit the Lodge to become regular and properly instituted, were
British soldiers of the Wolseley Expedition.
revival of Freemasonry at Fort Garry brought a request for a dispensation from
the Grand Lodge of Canada, which was granted Nov. 21, 1870, to nine
petitioners in the name of Winnipeg Lodge. Its early history is closely
interwoven with the development of the territory, itself of romantic interest,
and skillfully set forth by Bro. Douglas in his book. The lodge assumed its
present name, "Prince Rupert's Lodge," in 1871.
lodge was soon followed by two others, Lisgar Lodge, at Lower Fort Garry,
1871, and Ancient Landmark Lodge, Winnipeg, 1872. The three lodges, with a
membership not exceeding two hundred, formed the Grand Lodge of Manitoba in
1875, which held sovereign power not only over the Province of Manitoba, but
of the entire Northwest territories, embracing Saskatchewan, Alberta and the
interesting chapter in Freemasonry in Manitoba is the one dealing with the
Schism of 1878, concerning which additional items can be gleaned from the
Correspondent Reports of the period. It had its origin in questions of "work"
or "ritual." Says the author:
the question of "ritual" has been blamed for all the trouble which arose at
that time, it might safely be inferred that additional motives were
contributory to the trouble. Almost a half century after the occurrences took
place it is somewhat dangerous to offer conjecture, and we will accept the
evidence as it was left to us by the brethren who took part in all that
happened. The reader can make his own deductions, and read what lessons he may
choose from what is submitted in the evidence.
was restored in 1879, when the "regular" and the "schismatic" Grand Lodges
formed through previous difficulties were reunited. The question of ritual did
not enter into the written articles of settlement but was disposed of "by the
adoption of a resolution confirming all the Lodges of the jurisdiction in
whatever work they had been using as their ceremonial, and at the same time
granting to new Lodges the right of choice between the two systems as they
themselves deemed most suitable." The subject was reopened after a fashion in
1889, and again in 1908; but it is now at rest.
Another interesting chapter, one dealing with history a bit a request for a
lodge at Gibraltar, in which provision was asked for ultimate removal to "some
city in Morocco." The Board of General Purposes recommended the granting of a
charter to "Al Moghreb al Aska Lodge," No. 16. The action brought protests
from the Grand Lodges of Scotland and England, and the charter was accordingly
held in abeyance for six months. Yet the story did not end there; but the
reader is referred to the book for the outcome of the incident. It is
extremely well told by the author.
all, the volume is one which will hold the reader's interest from cover to
cover; I know I shall read it more deliberately at the first opportunity. It
is not a dry presentation of purely Masonic facts; the author has a knowledge
of Northwest history which is sketched in at opportune places in a manner
which gives a fascinating background to the story. He has the accomplished
writer's sense of values which enables him to put in a bold stroke here, and a
light touch there. The text appeals not only to the Mason interested in the
development of Freemasonry in general but will also grip the attention of the
critical historian among non‑members of our ancient and honorable Fraternity.
that there were more Craft historians like Bro. William Douglas! As a Masonic
writer, he has added to the laurels which are undoubtedly his as a member of
the Board of General Purposes of the Grand Lodge of Manitoba; Past President
of the Past Masters’ Association of Winnipeg; Past District Grand Master, and
Secretary of St. John's Lodge, No. 4, Winnipeg. His is the most interesting
and valuable Masonic book of 1925 that I have reviewed.
* * *
AND HISTORIC FREEMASONRY OF GEORGIA, 1733/4 - 1800. By William Bordley Clarke,
P. M., Solomon's Lodge, No. 1, F. & A. M., Savannah, Georgia. 1924. Cloth, 8
vo., illustrated, 139 pages; index. Published by King Solomon's Lodge, $3.15.
BROADLY speaking, the history of Freemasonry in America is still a terra
incognita. Such sparse accounts as are found in general Masonic histories are
either too meagre to suit the exacting demands of the serious student, or are
looked upon with suspicion because of statements which are known to be
erroneous in the light of later discoveries. Many valuable facts are hidden
away in Masonic proceedings of Grand Lodges, local lodge histories and in
Masonic periodicals; but these are not available to the average reader, and
when reference can be had to them in Masonic libraries, the material is only
found accidentally, because complete indices have not been compiled. Of all
the representative Masonic libraries in the United States, the Iowa Masonic
Library is the only one which has had an appropriation granted for this work,
which is now under way.
this regrettable state of affairs that causes a book like Bro. Clarke's to
stand out like a pillar of fire at night. It truly illumines a dark corner of
American Masonic history. Bro. Melvin M. Johnson, P. G. M., Massachusetts,
author of Beginnings of Freemasonry in America, was in communication with Bro.
Clarke when he prepared the manuscript of his book. With typical Masonic
courtesy, Bro. Clarke permitted Bro. Johnson to incorporate some of his newly
discovered Georgia material in the latter's book, edition of 1924, and in
return Bro. Johnson aided Bro. Clarke with valuable suggestions. Assistance is
also acknowledged from other brethren, notably fellow members of King
Solomon's Lodge, No. 1, of Savannah, Ga.
begin with, the book is an agreeable surprise in binding and format. One is so
accustomed to seeing shoddy work and poor make-up in local lodge histories
that a volume printed at a home establishment and measuring up to all
requirements of metropolitan book-making is a rarity deserving of special
mention. Attractively bound in blue cloth, imprinted in gold on both binding
strip and front cover in type rarely found in a blank book manufacturer's
establishment, the volume looks and feels like a book. The text is printed on
laid paper, and the type display is perfect. Apparently, Braid & Hunt, Inc.,
the Savannah printers of this volume, do not have the dread of italics which
obsesses the average printer, judging from several years' experience of
book‑making and magazine editing.
Opening with a preface which gives the reader a setting for the book itself,
and which also reveals the modesty of the author, we come upon a bibliography
which indicates the wide field of study entered upon when the text was
prepared. It is singularly free from unauthoritative titles, such as a novice
would use to clutter his work. The Masonic books utilized as authorities are
all of recent years and recognized as reliable.
early history of Freemasonry in Georgia is inseparably interwoven with the
settlement and development of the colony. Oglethorpe, the founder of Georgia,
was also the founder of Freemasonry within its limits. Bro. Clarke immediately
disproves the assertion that Masonry had its birth in Georgia within a few
days after the founding of the colony. He quotes from the Minutes of the Grand
Lodge of England for Dec. 13, 1733 (Q. C. A. Vol. X, p. 235), in which it is
shown that our English brethren of that day approved of sending distressed
brethren to Georgia, where they might begin anew to restore their broken
fortunes. Georgia was originally colonized by men of means in 1733; it was not
until 1736 that "distressed brethren" arrived. The first lodge in Georgia was
established in 1734, Clavel and Ragon to the contrary notwithstanding. These
writers give the date as 1730, undoubtedly copied from the first edition of
Webb's Freemason’s Monitor. Webb corrected the error in his 1802 edition, but
Clavel and Ragon, who wrote later, apparently did not use the 1802 or
subsequent editions of Webb's book. The charter granted to the lodge at
Savannah was not issued by the Grand Lodge of England until 1735. Bro. Clarke
refutes the story that Roger Lacey, the first Provincial Grand Master of
Georgia, was in the colony prior to 1734, and shows conclusively that he did
not arrive until 1736.
Solomon's Lodge, No. 1, of Savannah, through which Freemasonry in Georgia had
its origin, did not come into actual possession of its charter until the same
year. Oglethorpe, who had been in England, landed at Savannah Feb. 5, 1736,
and all appearances indicate that he brought the charter with him at that
time, and that the lodge was regularly constituted between Feb. 6 and 16.
Tradition states that Oglethorpe was the first Master of the lodge, but no
records are extant which actually prove this, though the belief has existed
since the eighteenth century. The lodge possesses no records from 1734 to
1756. Parts of its minutes of 1756 and 1757 are extant, but from 1757 to 1785
they are missing entirely. From 1785 down to date they have been preserved
intact. A roster of the lodge, begun in 1757, was discovered a few years ago,
and one of its pages, of which a photographic reproduction is shown in the
volume, gives a list of names of the lodge founders, together with the dates
when they were made Masons.
Clarke's narrative is convincing in its calm and dispassionate presentation of
facts. Practically every statement carries its authority with it, making the
book a delight for the critical reader. The author has not only traced the
history of King Solomon's Lodge, which is practically the history of
Freemasonry in Georgia from 1734 to 1785, but has also shown the civil and
military activities of the brethren who composed the membership of King
Solomon's Lodge. The lives of the four Provincial Grand Masters, Roger Lacey,
Gray Elliott, Noble Jones and Samuel Elbert, are presented in excellent
detail, and the historical events in which the colonial brethren participated
are given in such a manner as to show that Freemasonry was a vital force in
the life of the colony. For instance, we find records of the campaign against
the Spaniards in Florida, who had been massing troops to destroy the Georgia
settlements; Indians were creating trouble, and jealous Charleston merchants
were doing what they could to destroy Savannah trade. Oglethorpe defeated the
Spaniards, forever removing the menace in that direction; Captain Noble Jones,
of King Solomon's Lodge, met the Indians and disarmed them; Bro. James
Habersham saved the colony from economic destruction by securing a
modification of labor restrictions. The perusal of this volume is not only an
enlightenment in Masonic lore, but also brings knowledge of colonial history
such as we do not find in the average school text books. Jews and Roman
Catholics were active members of the Craft in Georgia, although at first they
had been barred from entering the colony.
mention all of the valuable features of the book reviewed would be equivalent
to its reproduction in these columns. The subject cannot be dismissed with a
few words; the interested student must read the book itself. It contains six
pages of illustrations and a folding plate reproducing in reduced facsimile
the 1786 charter of King Solomon's Lodge, issued by the Grand Lodge of Georgia
formed Dec. 16 of that year. Mention should also be made of the chapter on the
"Beginning of the Royal Arch in Georgia," for this state claims the
distinction of having the second oldest record of the Degree in America, the
lodge having the Royal Arch apron of Benjamin Sheftall, Worshipful Master in
1758. All indications support the belief that the Warrant of King Solomon's
Lodge was used as authority to confer the Royal Arch Degree in Georgia in
fact that a table of contents is lacking in the volume does not seriously
detract from its worth, for each chapter heading carries a resume of the text
which follows; yet the publication of chapter titles and resumes in the proper
place would correct the book's only defect from the reader's point of view.
Twelve pages are set aside for an index, without which no book should ever be
issued. Take heed, ye scriveners of the future, to this statement! And when
preparing the index, do not content yourselves with listing a name or a place
without giving a word or two concerning the subject with which they are
concerned. A staggering array of page numbers following a name only adds to a
reader's bewilderment (and irritation) unless some explanatory word
accompanies the figures.
author of this most commendable volume is a young man both in years and in
Freemasonry. Initiated in 1917, he was elected Master of King Solomon's Lodge
five years later. In February of this year he was made a life member of his
lodge in recognition of his unusual services. Life membership was also
conferred upon him three years ago by the Commandery of which he is a member.
He is an architect by profession and has made valuable literary contributions
on other subjects, notably on the history of the Lutheran Church in Georgia.
It is brethren such as Past Master William Bordley Clarke upon whom the Craft
rely for accurate accounts of Masonic history in America.
* * *
SYMBOLISM FOR ARTISTS, CREATIVE AND APPRECIATIVE. By Henry Turner Bailey and
Ethel Pool. Published by the Davis Press, Worcester, Mass. May be purchased
through the National Masonic Research Society Book Department, 1950 Railway
Exchange, St. Louis, Mo. Blue cloth 289 pages, illustrated, Bibliography.
Price, postpaid, $5.15.
is really a dictionary of symbols and emblems which have been or may be used.
There is of course nothing especially Masonic about the compilation though
some Masonic symbols are included, but it should nevertheless be a very useful
work of reference to all Masonic students interested in the symbolic and
emblematic side of the Institution. Some of the illustrations are very
interesting, but too many have been so much reduced that it is almost
impossible to distinguish the significant details.
NOT CALL IT "MASONIC CULTURE"?
paragraph on page 51 of the February issue of THE BUILDER entitled "A
Vocabulary Wanted," gives me an idea. Would not "Masonic Culture" be the
proper way to describe "Masonic Education" ? Webster's dictionary takes in a
good deal of our Masonic ideals in its definition of the word "culture."
"Culture. (Kul'ture) Act of cultivating, cultivation, physical improvement,
refinement of mind and manner, to cultivate, to educate, to till the human
thoughts, to foster, to cherish, to civilize mankind, to produce more and
P. Eckberg, Ames, Iowa.
* * *
CIRCLE OR STUDY CLUB
several months past I have read with considerable interest the articles
contained in your Study Club section. We have for the past year maintained an
organization in my own lodge, which originally had the designation "Study
Club." Because of the confusion arising from the application of the word to
other organizations affiliated with the lodge, we have changed our title to
the "Study Circle."
Undoubtedly THE BUILDER, through its Study Club Department, has an influence
on the nomenclature of such organizations. Because we have experienced
confusion in my lodge, and because other lodges who form study circles may
experience the same confusion, may I be so bold as to suggest that you change
the name of your department to the "Study Circle"?
should like an expression of opinion on this suggestion. There has been a
feeling among a good many readers of THE Burden that the name "Study Club" was
not altogether satisfactory for a number of reasons. The suggestion made in
this letter has much to commend it.
* * *
the case in every organization there are times when opinions differ as to the
rights and wrongs of things. I would be greatly obliged if you would answer
Craft at Labor or Refreshment when the brethren leave the lodge room to attend
the funeral service of one of the brethren ?
observation regarding the differences of opinions is very just, no matter how
perfect mankind becomes there will always be room for such differences.
respect to the specific question all authorities unhesitatingly agree that the
conducting of the funeral ceremonies of a brother Mason is to be regarded as
part of the work of the lodge. According to old custom, which is not always
carried out now, though it ought to be, when the brethren leave the lodge room
they take with them the Three Great Lights. Also according to old custom no
one could leave or join the procession without specific permission ‑ from the
Master, obtained through the medium of the marshal or director of ceremonies;
which parallels another old custom, now it is to be feared going out of use in
many jurisdictions, that no one can leave or enter the lodge room without
leave asked and specially given. It follows that the answer to the question is
unhesitatingly that the lodge is not at refreshment under such circumstances
but at labor.
* * *
CHARLES CARROLL OF CARROLLTON
is a query that I would like to make through the Question Box Department. Is
there, or has there ever been any indication, belief or tradition that Charles
Carroll, of Carrollton, was a Mason?
writers seem to agree that he was not, supposing that his well known Catholic
connection precluded all possibility of Masonic membership. However, a brother
of my acquaintance owns an old apron to which his grandfather many years ago
attached a note reading about as follows: "I wore this apron and sat in the
Grand Lodge of Maryland with the Marquis Lafayette and Charles Carroll of
Carrollton." (Signed but undated.) Knowing the present owner as I do my own
opinion is that Carroll was a Mason, although I fully realize that the fact is
not historically established. All that I have in mind in writing this letter
is the placing of a hint or clue in the hands of such students as may be in
position to investigate further.
any of our readers furnish any information on this point ?
* * *
you claim to be seeking for criticism: The public should refuse to purchase
any book having the leaves uncut, and journals having articles interrupted and
spaced rather spasmodically at intervals from cover to cover are in the same
class. For this reason disfavor with THE BUILDER is growing more with each
issue. It takes what good there may be in an article out of it. Since there
are no advertisements carried in THE BUILDER, the practice is entirely
inexcusable. That's that.
straightforward criticism as this is very refreshing. Not all booklovers would
agree about uncut books but no reader can enjoy having to seek another page to
finish the article he is reading. However, contrary to the generally received
opinion of the uninitiated this defect is not entirely due to advertisements.
There are a number of other reasons which appear to make it necessary. In the
case of THE BUILDER the principal motive is the necessity of avoiding waste of
space on the one hand and extra expense in resetting type on the other. It is
impossible to judge beforehand exactly how much space an article will take,
nor do such articles as appear in THE BUILDER lend themselves, like
journalistic "stories," to the cutting out of lines or paragraphs. To shorten
them means nearly always a certain amount of rewriting, which further means
resetting, entirely aside from the question of the author's feeling in the
* * *
you, without undue trouble, help me with any information as to the symbolism
of the two crossed pillars and the cube as depicted in aprons of the Fifth
Degree of the A. & A S. R.?
question about the two crossed pillars in the Fifth Degree (Perfect Master) of
the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite is a very interesting one, and not at
all easy to solve. The revised rituals seem to have dropped these pillars from
their designs altogether, nor are they mentioned in the explanations given in
the ceremonies of the Degree. As these revised rituals were largely the work
of Albert Pike, and as he, to a very great extent, rationalized the teaching
of the degrees, it is probable they were dropped because they were too much of
a mystery to be explained.
Apparently in the earliest forms of the ritual of this degree there was a
chart laid on the floor of the lodge upon which these two pillars were drawn
crosswise along with other symbolic devices, and the candidate in approaching
the altar had to step over the representation of the pillars after a peculiar
form, which might possibly be supposed to have been suggested by the form of
working the Third Degree generally used in Canada, and which was also used in
France where the degree under discussion undoubtedly arose.
Fellows, in his "Mysteries of Freemasonry," explains them as referring to the
equinoxes. Fellows, however, was strongly inclined to explain everything in
Freemasonry by astronomical references. Personally, I think that such
explanations are invented after the fact and were not an originating cause of
the different forms and emblems. There are several things about this degree,
especially in the opening and closing ceremonies, which lead one to think that
when it was invented it was regarded as a fourth degree immediately succeeding
that of Master Mason.
original "Scotch" Degree, or Scotch Master, seems to have sometimes been
called "St. Andrew's Masonry." Or at least the St. Andrew's Degrees which
appeared in various places seem to have been variants of Scotch Master. I am,
therefore, strongly inclined to think that the placing of the two pillars in
this position was originally drawn with the idea of bringing in a Scottish
association of ideas by thus forming them into a St. Andrew's cross.
color green, which is the peculiar color of this degree, is again very
prominent in Scottish Freemasonry. Not only the Scottish Freemasonry of the
French variety, but also from the Masonry actually practiced in Scotland;
green being the color of the Grand Lodge of Scotland.
* * *
have in this community a man who wears a Masonic emblem, says he is a Mason,
and claims to belong to a lodge in Colorado. However, he states that their
lodge admits women and their official magazine is called "The American
Co‑Mason," published at Larkspur, Col.
claims he puts forth as to the origin of their lodge are numerous, but he is
not sufficiently posted in the matter himself to give any definite data, his
strongest argument being that it was all thoroughly explained to him on his
recent trip to Colorado when he received some degrees which he claims are
those of the Royal Arch; but from what I am able to draw out of him, these
degrees differ materially from ours.
is no doubt but that it was all explained to his satisfaction and he is
thoroughly convinced that our lodges will soon initiate women and ultimately
recognize their lodges. Hoping for this end he is continually preaching their
propaganda and loaning their magazine which quotes from THE BUILDER, Masonic
Service Association, etc. If you can give me any information as to the justice
of their claims and their rights in wearing our emblems it will be highly
rather difficult to correctly estimate the rights and wrongs of the question
you raise. In the minds of the public at large the square and compasses are
quite identified with the Masonic Order, but as a matter of fact they have
been used in various other ways by other bodies; for instance, in Europe the
carpenters and other wood‑working trades often use them as badges, and in
Germany they are sometimes apparently used merely as an ornamental decoration
some states of the Union there are local ordinances making it an offense for
anyone to wear the square and compasses who is not a member of the Masonic
Order. This does not seem altogether a good thing, as it means that the State
becomes the judge as to the regularity of the Masonic Order, which is a thing
with which it has nothing to do.
Co‑Masonry seems to have originally started in Europe, its central body is, I
believe, located in France and from there it has spread all over the world.
There is, however, a separated branch or order whose headquarters are in
California, but about this I know very little. It might be a subject of some
interest to find out just what the origin of Co‑Masonry is, whether it was
invented by a number of people with no previous connection with the
Institution, or whether a number of Masons unlawfully and irregularly
initiated women into the Order. In any case so far as our Jurisdictions are
concerned it is irregular and spurious.
is a growing feeling among better informed brethren in this country today that
American Masons depend altogether too much upon the wearing of badges and
buttons. At the very best such outward marks, visible to the whole world, are
merely indications that the person so distinguished may be a Mason.
Unfortunately too many uninstructed brethren get into the way of assuming that
because a man wears a Masonic badge he is a Mason, and it is this that is at
the root of the demand that it should be illegal for anyone not a Mason to
wear one. But this demand entirely ignores the fact that Masons have perfectly
adequate means for distinguishing each other without any badges at all, and if
they live up to the tenets of their profession and the points of their
entrance that they will be quite sufficiently known as Masons to the world.
* * *
"SCOTTISH" AND "YORK"
Masonic Order in any way affiliated with an organization called "The American
is the origin of the Scottish and of the York Rite of Freemasonry? Is the
Scottish Rite as we have it in other countries? How is it that there are two
Jurisdictions of the Scottish Rite in this country? Was that caused by the
Civil War as was the division of some of our churches? Which is the larger
Jurisdiction and of what states are each comprised?
Wisconsin (Northern Jurisdiction) one must be a York Rite Mason to be eligible
to the Scottish Rite: is this a ruling of the Northern Jurisdiction or is it
true that Florida has a law prohibiting negro lodges from calling themselves
have no information about the American Fraternal Union, but it is not in the
least probable that it is in any way affiliated with the Masonic Order.
Strictly speaking, Masonry, that is Blue Lodge Masonry, can have no
affiliations with any external organization.
ask what is the origin of the Scottish and York Rites. It is a long story to
tell the origin and in many respects questions regarding it are still a matter
of controversy, or at least full agreement has not been reached by those
interested in the subject. The origin of the Scottish Rite is the clearer of
the two. In its present form it was evolved out of the Rite of Perfection at
Charleston in 1801 where the first Supreme Council was formed. In 1813 the
Supreme Council of the Northern Jurisdiction was formed, which thus answers
your question as to whether this division was due to the Civil War. The
Northern Jurisdiction was given all the territory north of the Ohio and east
of the Mississippi Rivers, the remainder of the United States being under the
Southern Jurisdiction. This answers the question as to their relative size.
York Rite is usually meant the American system of degrees consisting of the
Blue Lodge, the Chapter and Knights Templar, but the term is vague in meaning
and very loosely used as a rule. The origin of all these degrees is veiled in
obscurity, and the story of the variations in their order of succession has
never yet been fully written. You will find a good deal on the subject in
Gould's "Concise History." The generally received opinion is that Webb had a
good deal to do with the succession of degrees in the Chapter, Council and
Wisconsin rule of which you speak means that the candidate for the Scottish
Rite must be a Knight Templar it would appear to be a purely local
requirement. In general a Master Mason is eligible for the degrees of the
Lodge of Perfection and so on through the various bodies of the Scottish Rite.
office of the Grand Secretary of Florida has no information regarding such a
law as that of which you speak.
* * *
WANTED AND FOR SALE
our correspondents have copies of Piazzi Smyth's "Our Inheritance in the Great
Pyramid." One of these is very scarce first edition the other is the fourth
"A. H. K. has Vols. VI, VII, VIII, IX and X of THE BUDDER he wishes to sell.
is from a Grand Lodge report:
requests for rulings were so numerous that the Grand Master wondered whether
the Master and Wardens of the lodges ever read the Constitution and laws of
the Grand Lodge. Of course they do not; it is so much easier to get the Grand
Master to look up authorities for them." In other words, to let George do it.
But there is always a reaction - letting George do it will inevitably in time
give George the power and control – he becomes the only one who can do it.