Masonic Research Society
The Suppression of the Order
of the Temple
By Bro. Frederick W. Hamilton,
DE MOLAY confessed only to spitting on the
the other allegations. He seems to have been led to this partial
in a way was an evidence of weakness, by several considerations. One
was fear of
torture. Although De Molay appears to have been a man of personal
courage in the
battle field and was capable of dying a painful death with heroic
we shall see later, he seems to have shrunk from the threat of torture.
He was also
promised clemency if he would confess and he appears to have believed
that a partial
confession would open the door to freedom and enable him not only to
but the other Knights. We must remember that De Molay throughout was
his responsibility as Grand Master, and in all his actions he appears
to have felt
that he must consider not only himself but the brethren of the Order
who were under
his command. He also feared a definite charge of sodomy aimed against
is no reason to believe that there was a slightest proof for such a
charge but De
Molay's enemies were active, ingenious, and unscrupulous. They had
a case against him and they had witnesses ready to sustain the charge
testimony. In those days escape was difficult if the tribunal desired
and there is little doubt that if De Molay had been tried upon this
charge he would
have been convicted. No matter how unjust such a conviction, it would
death and dishonor. It is no wonder that De Molay was not willing to
Under these circumstances he made his confession, but he declared that
offer satisfactory explanation if only he could be allowed to submit it
to the King or the Pope. What this explanation probably was we shall
It is needless to say, however, that De Molay was not permitted to make
his confession was held by his enemies for all it was worth and more.
When Pope Clement heard of these proceedings he
extremely angry. He immediately issued an edict suspending the Grand
and sent a committee of cardinals to investigate and report.
the case had gone too far to be stopped, as the King perfectly well
might be punished, but in some way or another proceedings would have to
go on. Philip
was not in the least daunted by the Pope's anger or disturbed by his
He arranged for a conference between himself and Clement which was held
1308. The King, who, throughout these proceedings shows himself to have
the stronger personality of the two, took the aggressive by demanding
of the Pope
five extremely unpalatable things.
of Celestine V.
of Boniface VIII for heresy.
Council to take into comprehensive consideration the affairs of the
Papal absolution for De Nogaret.
of the papacy from Rome to Avignon.
Clement yielded with regard to the canonization
the absolution of De Nogaret, and the removal of the papacy. This was
of the long residence of the popes at Avignon which is known in history
as the "Babylonish
Captivity." The condemnation of Boniface and the general Council were
to which he was entirely unwilling to consent. In return for the
of these points he did exactly what Philip had foreseen and desired; he
the defense of the Templars.
After considerable negotiation a bargain was
between the Pope and the King. Two sets of terms were agreed upon, one
to be made
public but not to bind either the Pope or the King, the other to be
but to be regarded as binding. According to the first, which was a
tissue of treacherous
falsehoods, the Templars were to be taken from the French-authorities
in the hands of the Pope as representing the Church. The property of
the Order was
to be held in trust by the Church and the proceeds were to be used for
on the crusade; that is to say for the purpose for which it was
The suspension of the Grand Inquisitor and others who had been involved
was to be removed. The terms of the private agreement were far
different. The Church,
on the plea that it had no facilities for the care of so large a number
was to leave the persons of the Templars in the hands of the King. The
instead of being held and administered by the Church, in trust, was to
be held by
Philip on behalf of the Church and was to be administered by a Board of
half of whom were to be appointed by the Pope and the other half
by King Philip. In other words, the Templars and their goods were
handed over to
the tender mercies of the King. Such was the price in humiliation and
Clement paid for the title of Successor of St. Peter.
The next act in this tragedy was the summoning
Council to try the Order as a whole. Henceforth here were two processes
going on, one against the Knights as individuals and one against the
Order as a
corporation. This gave opportunity for more treachery.
As we have seen, the King had played the game
dice from the beginning and now the dice were loaded even more heavily
if such a thing were possible. A net was spread from which it was
for anyone to escape, while the proceedings were extended to other
is not necessary to go into the details of the story of the proceedings
France. In a general way, so far as the individual Knights were
were similar to the French proceedings although conducted with varying
severity according to the temper of the several monarchs who were
concerned in the
matter. Actions against the Order as a whole were covered by the
we are about to trace.
Knights were summoned from far and near to come
defense of the Order in its hour of trial. They were asked by the papal
to come and speak in its defense and they naturally understood that
personal immunity. They soon found, however, that nothing of the sort
When each Knight appeared he was asked if he desired to defend the
Order. If he
said that he did he was immediately made a defendant, not only in the
the Order but in the personal process against the Knights. If he took
said that he did not wish to defend the Order, he was held as a
to examination under torture.
Many Knights, trusting to their immunity as
withdrew their former confessions which, as will be remembered, were
torture. They withdrew these confessions because they were false and
desired to defend the Order as a whole against the charges to which
they had personally
pleaded guilty under compulsion. Considerable numbers of those who
confessions in this way were immediately burned as relapsed heretics.
This, by the
way, was the ordinary procedure in those days in the case of dealings
As a rule there was very little chance for the accused to escape. If he
to confess he was convicted and burned on the testimony of others. If
and withdrew his confession he was burned as a relapsed heretic. If he
and did not withdraw the confession, he was burned as a confessed
the only difference was that in the last case he received absolution,
supposed to save his soul, and was sometimes able to save his property
for his family.
Moreover, not content with the ordinary partiality of judicial
proceedings in those
days, the two sets of proceedings were made to play into each other and
obtained in either trial was used indiscriminately against the
defendants in both.
Interest centers largely on the tragic figure
Molay. As we have already seen, he had been examined by the Grand
1306 and had made a partial confession. He was kept in close
he demanded an opportunity to appear before the Pope who, it will be
was the only person in Christendom to whom he owed allegiance, and
submit to him
an explanation of the acts with which he was charged.
In 1308 he was visited by three cardinals sent
Pope. He was solemnly assured that he was now in the hands of the
Church, from whose
clemency and aversion to cruelty and bloodshed everything favorable
could be expected.
He was promised mercy by both the Pope and the King on the strength of
a full and
free confession. He renewed his confession, although he did not extend
and threw himself on the mercy of the Church. He was given absolution
by the cardinals,
was restored to the communion of the Church, and was actually given the
by the cardinals. This was distinctly stated by the cardinals in a
they made to the Pope.
In spite of all these facts, however, he was
at liberty, though he vigorously demanded it and urged the fulfillment
of the promises
which had been made to him.
In November, 1309, De Molay was brought before
which was trying the Order. Being asked if he would defend the Order he
to plead. He appealed to the Pope, pleading the rights of the Order and
to be heard by the Pope in person. In response to the charge of
idolatry he made
solemn affirmation of orthodoxy. Being charged by De Nogaret with
with the Saracens contrary to his vows and to the interests of
Christendom, he said
that the alleged dealings consisted only of truces and treaties made
with them as
incidents of warfare and for the sake of saving the Christians in the
disaster. The charge of sodomy was brought up, but was not pressed with
and the prosecution failed to establish it by even plausible testimony.
then demanded to be set at liberty, claiming the failure of the
the promises of both the Pope and the King. The request, however, was
he was sent back to his dungeon.
The tedious proceedings against the Order
for three years. Every effort was made to suppress the defense and to
or destroy the defendants of the Order. Again and again the chosen
of groups of Knights were either executed or silenced. Executions
place as the result of the other set of proceedings and care was taken
executions should be as damaging as possible to the defense of the
The proceedings lasted until May 6, 1312, when
by a summary exercise of his authority, dissolved the Order. It is
note that the Order was never condemned. The proceedings against the
never finished. While they were still going on the Pope intervened and
put a stop
to the proceedings and to the Order at the same time. Examination of
shows that the charges were not substantiated, at least in any way
which would appear
to satisfy modern ideas. It is quite probable, however, that had the
been allowed to come to their natural end the Order would have been
is difficult to see how the Pope and King could have permitted the
come to any other conclusion.
The intervention of the Pope was for the
purpose of saving the immense properties of the Order for the Church.
By the law
of that day the property of a condemned heretic passed not to the
Church but to
the State. If the Order of the Temple had been condemned for heresy its
possessions would have passed to the rulers of the countries in which
located and the Church would not have touched a penny. Dissolution of
however, without condemnation threw its numerous properties, scattered
and the east, into the hands of the Church. Pope Clement was not so
sincere a defender
of orthodoxy that he had the slightest intention of taking all his
trouble for the
purpose of enriching Philip of France and other kings of Europe. He
let the Order go uncondemned, to leave the Knights to the tender
mercies of kings
and inquisitors, and to save the money for the Church.
In this, however, he was only partially
It will be remembered that in France, at least, the King was the
custodian of the
property of the Templars and he succeeded in keeping a very large part
of it. The
same thing happened to a greater or less extent in the other countries.
however, succeeded in getting a portion of the wealth into his
possession and a
considerable part of this finally found its way into the hands of the
It is not to be understood that the Hospitallers were participants in
against the Templars. The Order of the Hospitallers was the greatest
of Knights in existence except the Templars and the natural
administrator of property
given in trust for the crusades.
De Molay remained in prison until December,
he was brought before three French cardinals. The old vague promises of
made and De Molay once more renewed the old confession again without
scope. He was taken back to his dungeon and told that at a certain time
would make their final decision in the case. Trusting to the repeated
had been made, De Molay came before them on March 10, 1314, expecting
probably accompanied by heavy penance and possibly other penalties. To
he was sentenced to life imprisonment. De Molay, it will be remembered,
in prison for seven years. Whether he had been actually tortured or not
is not quite
certain, but imprisonment itself was torture in those days and De Molay
willing to face the prospect of a further imprisonment which could
in his death. He was shocked, angry, and broken hearted at the
treachery which he
had met at the hands of both State and Church. As soon as the sentence
De Molay arose in his place and retracted his confession, declaring
that it was
not true, that he had confessed only out of willingness to please the
King and the
Pope and a desire to help his brethren, and that he now wished to
withdraw his confession,
proclaim its untruth, and take the consequences. The cardinals, in
their court until the next day. This was something entirely unexpected
desired time to think it over.
King Philip, however, had no intention of
prey to escape him or of giving the cardinals the desired opportunity
That very night De Molay was taken from his prison by a detachment of
guards and burned at the stake on a little island in the Seine. In
spite of the
high-handedness of these proceedings, involving the invasion of the
rights of the
Church by taking its prisoner from its hands and putting him to death,
did not dare to raise a word of protest, so great was the ascendancy
which the King
had obtained over the Pope. It is stated by tradition that when De
Molay went to
the stake, he solemnly summoned the Pope and the King to meet him
before the bar
of eternal justice within one year. Whether or not this legend is true,
it is true
that within the year Clement and Philip were both in their graves.
Whether for good or evil the Order of the
suppressed forever. No other body of men ever enjoyed such wealth, such
privileges, and such immunities as had been enjoyed by the Templars.
had used them wisely or not, it is not always easy to say. That they
were in a very
real sense injurious to both State and Church, we shall probably all
the Templars did not deserve so cruel a fate as that which overtook
them seems clearly
established. In order to make this point clear, let us make a brief
of the indictment drawn against the Order and the probable truth, or
lack of it,
in the charges.
The indictment against the Order contained 117
or counts as we should style them. This great number of counts was
partly the result
of technical repetitions. In many cases the same accusations were
repeated in different
forms, the first charging that a specified offense was committed by all
of the Knights,
the second that it was committed by most of them, and the third that it
by some of them.
Stripped of verbiage and repetition the charges
down to the following:
- Denial of
indecent kisses from the candidates.
- Denial of
the sacrament of the altar.
of the most significant words from the mass.
of absolution for sins, even when not confessed, by the Grand Master.
an oath never to leave the Order.
to the members to practice sodomy.
- Actual practice
of a cat.
- Use of cords
which had been touched to an idol.
- Murder of
candidates for refusing to take the oath of secrecy
- Murder of
members for revealing the secrets of the Order.
only within the limits of the Order and not to outside priests.
to correct or reveal the evils which the members of the Order knew to
to discharge the duties of hospitality which were incumbent upon the
and rapacity in obtaining possession of the property of others.
The indictment closed by alleging the
we have already considered as proof of the truth of the charges.
It would be tedious, perhaps, to examine the
in detail, but a few of them should have careful consideration.
We know that the conclaves of the Order were
secret and that no outsiders were admitted to their ceremonies. That
was not a crime,
but it was a cause of suspicion.
We have no sufficient evidence either that
were murdered for refusing to take the oath or that members were
murdered for revealing
the secrets. In this respect, as in some others, the agitation reminds
us of the
anti-Masonic charges of a later time and especially of those connected
name of Morgan. Fundamentally the same human characteristics are
Charges of immorality are certainly not
by the evidence. That there were immoral individuals in the Order could
denied. It would be impossible that so large a body of men should be
free from unworthy
members. It would be rash to deny that there were individual cases of
crime was common in the middle ages and has always been the curse of
That it was particularly common among the Templars or sufficiently
common to blacken
the fame of the whole Order is absolutely without proof. Indeed there
is very little
evidence in the trial bearing at all upon this point.
The charge that the practice was permitted
its only shadow of foundation in the fact that a section of the "rule"
provides that when there were not sufficient accommodations for each
Knight to have
a separate bed, two might occupy the same bed rather than that one
should lie upon
The charge of covetousness and rapacity is
When a rich noble died and left all his property to the Order his
enough, were not particularly pleased. They doubtless had a good deal
to say about
undue influence and other things which we hear about today. That the
action of the
Order was particularly objectionable in this respect does not appear
from the evidence.
The charge of parsimony and lack of hospitality
The charge of heresy or the holding of
was not proved and was always denied by the Knights.
The omission of significant words from the mass
other form of blasphemy was not only unproved but was vigorously denied
all of the witnesses. The charges relating to heresy are denied not
only by the
testimony of the witnesses but by the entire history of the Order. It
probable that the cosmopolitan character of the Order and the contact
of its members
with men of many nationalities and of different faiths had the
of broadening their views and giving them a certain toleration and
personal outlook. It is very difficult for a man who comes constantly
with all sorts and conditions of men and with a great number of
national and racial
types to continue a fanatic. During the whole course of their
the Knights were the foremost to shed their blood and spend their lives
Christian faith, that is to say for orthodox Catholicism. They were the
edge of the crusading armies, rivaled in this regard only by the
and again detachments of the Knights were cut down to the last man
the cross and refusing to surrender to the infidel or even to flee from
do not show such determination as this for a faith in which they do not
As for the matter of confession and absolution.
that the rule of the Order especially provided that the members should
own chaplains, to whom they should make their confessions when it was
do so. This rule was drawn up by St. Bernard and approved by the Pope.
to it on the part of the Knights could hardly be considered a crime. It
proved that the Grand Master did not give ecclesiastical absolution. He
the right to receive disciplinary confessions, to condone offenses
against the Order,
or to inflict disciplinary penance. This was a purely administrative
had nothing to do with clerical absolution. No Grand Master ever
presumed to give
The charge of idolatry arose from a curious
It was alleged that the Templars worshiped a brazen head. This head, it
had a white beard and rested upon a tall tripod. To this head the
said to pray, and it was charged that the cords which they wore as a
part of their
habits were consecrated to it by being touched to it. The great church
of the Templars
in Paris possessed a very sacred relic. It was said to be the head of
one of the
11,000 virgins who were martyred with St. Ursula at Cologne. It is
know, by the way, that the legend of the 11,000 virgins rests upon a
of an old Roman inscription. The inscription tells of "XI M Virgines."
M was read as an abbreviation for "mille" but it was really the
for "martyres" and instead of being read 11,000 virgins it should have
been read 11 virgin martyrs. However, the head in question was believed
to be the
head of one of the virgins, whether there were eleven or eleven
thousand. This head
was covered with a white linen cloth and was covered again by a gold or
in the shape of a head. When the case was slipped over the head the
showed at the base of it. The relic was displayed on special occasions
high altar of the church, mounted on a tripod. This was the bearded,
which the Templars were said to worship. There were probably
reproductions of this
reliquary in other Temple churches. It is probable that the Templars
were glad to
consecrate their cords by touching them to this sacred relic as was a
in those days.
The charge that indecent kisses were required
true, though not as a universal practice. This appears from a
of depositions. This was done probably from one or both of two reasons.
It may have
been required as a test of obedience. It will be remembered that the
the three great vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience. Obedience was
be absolute. Once the Knight had sworn he was under this bond and was
bound to do
without question anything that he was told to do by his knightly
superior. His obedience
was immediately tested by this requirement. The second reason is almost
today but is perfectly intelligible to anyone who is familiar with the
habits of the middle ages. It was a rough joke, and it was the kind of
the medieval mind considered funny. Wit and humor as we know them were
in the middle ages. Their places were taken by unspeakable coarseness.
is familiar with the art, literature, and drama of the Middle Ages is
only too familiar
with this fact. The more filthy and indecent the story or incident the
more it appealed
to the rough humor of the time and the louder the laugh which it
of rough buffoonery with the most solemn incidents appealed to the
minds of the
people of that age. It was only in accord with the habits of the time
the solemn ceremonies of the initiation the candidates should be
subjected to a
bit of foolish buffoonery.
There remains the charge of denial of Christ
the cross. That there was any denial beyond the alleged defilement of
does not appear. That the candidates were sometimes, not always,
commanded to spit
upon the cross or otherwise defile it was confessed by De Molay and
seems to be
clearly established by other testimony. It will be remembered, however,
Molay insisted that he could explain the fact, and the explanation
appears in the
testimony of some of the witnesses. Witnesses usually testified that
they did not
spit upon the cross but upon the ground near the cross, and some of
that when commanded to do so they refused. Those who refused were
upon their courage and told that they would certainly be good soldiers
of the cross.
In other words the command to defile the cross was a test. The
sworn obedience and having sworn to serve as a defender of the cross
put to the most difficult and trying of all tests, a test which
of obligations. He was called upon to choose whether he would fulfill
his vow of
obedience at the expense of his vow of loyalty to the cross, or whether
carry his loyalty to the cross so far as to break his oath of
obedience. It must
be remembered that this was an age in which obedience was a virtue and
efficiency of the Order, or any similar body, depended upon the
of its members to the orders which they received. As has already been
the loyalty of the Order to the cross is written in blood on every page
of its history,
whatever may have occurred at the initiation. Undoubtedly the
explanation De Molay
would have made, if he had been given opportunity to do it, was the one
that this ceremonial requirement was a test and entirely void of any
A survey of the charges and the evidence seems
that the condemnation of the Templars was an act of great injustice and
suppression of the Order was certainly not warranted by the charges
which were brought
against it. That the privileges and immunities of the Order worked to
of the state, the impairment of the king's power and authority, the
injury of the
Church, and the lessening of the authority of the bishops, must be
clear to anyone.
That both Pope and King breathed easier after the Order had ceased to
exist is entirely
probable, but that its crimes were such as to deserve the treatment it
certainly does not appear from any facts in our possession or brought
out at the
One question will at once arise in the minds of
Mason, "Did the Order survive its suppression and is there any direct
between the ancient Templars and modern Templar Freemasonry?"
So far as we have any evidence this question
answered in the negative. Legend states that De Molay appointed a
a line of Grand Masters is named connecting the ancient and modern
Orders. De Molay
had no right to appoint a successor. The election of Grand Master is
for in the rule of the Order and no provision is made for any other
form of procedure
under any circumstances. There is no evidence whatever for the
authenticity of the
list which is sometimes given.
Some of the Templars who survived joined other
and some of them passed their remaining days in obscurity or
is no traceable connection between the ancient Knights of the Temple
and any modern
order. The most we can say is that it is possible that the traditions
and even the
secrets of the Order were cherished by its surviving members after the
dissolved. Men do not easily forget things which have been very dear to
which they have suffered, and for which they have seen their companions
there was any esoteric rule or belief among the Templars, we have no
there was a certain freedom of thought and breadth of view would be the
result of that cosmopolitanism and contact with the outside world of
which we have
taken account. It may be that the survivors of the Order, hoping
against hope that
it might someday revive, may have communicated their hopes, their
ritual, their views, and their secrets, if such there were, to their
and in this way the soul of the Order may have survived until it
reappeared in other
forms, and its ideas and ideals may have been influential some
centuries later in
the development of those movements which resulted in the transformation
from its old operative into its modern speculative form. But all this
lies in the
field of conjecture. As far as the sober historian can see the Order of
ceased with the edict of May 6, 1312, which absolved the Order, and the
of March 10, 1314, which ended the life of De Molay.
The Apron Symbolism -- [A Poem]
N. A. Mcaulay
More ancient than the Golden Fleece
Whose story shines in classic lore:
Or Roman Eagle – which portrayed
Chivalric deeds in days of yore.
More honored than the Knightly Star,
Or Royal Garter, it must be;
A symbol you should fondly keep
From spot and stain forever free.
It may be that in coming years,
As time shall all your labors test:
That laurel leaves of Victory
Shall on your brow in honor rest.
Yea, from your breast may jewels hang
Fit any diadem to grace:
And sparkling gems of beauty rare
May on your person find a place.
Nay more, perchance with coming light,
Your feet may tread the path of fame:
Which in our Mystic order leads
To glory, and an honored name.
Yes, on your shoulders there may rest
The purple which we hold so dear:
That ensign which our progress marks
In high fraternal Circles here.
But never more can you receive
From mortal hand while here below:
An emblem which such honor brings
As this one – which I now bestow.
Until your spirit shall have passed
Beyond the pearly gates above:
May this the "Badge of Innocence"
Remind you of your vows of love.
'Tis yours to wear throughout your life,
'Till death shall call your soul to God:
Then on your casket to be placed,
When you shall sleep beneath the sod.
Its spotless surface is a type
Of that which marks a noble mind:
The rectitude of heart and life,
Which in its teachings you should find.
And when at last your weary feet
Shall reach the goal awaiting all:
And from your tired nerveless grasp
The working tools of life shall fall.
May then the record of your life,
Reflect the pure and spotless white
Of this fair token which I place
Within your keeping here tonight.
And as your naked soul shall stand
Before the great white throne of light;
And judgment for the deeds of earth
Shall issue there – to bless or blight;
Then may you hear the Welcome Voice
That tells of endless joys begun,
As God shall own your faithfulness,
And greet you with the words, "Well Done.”
Evidences of Symbolism in
the Land of the Incas
By Bro. Hiram Bingham, Yale
(Born in Honolulu in 1875, Brother Bingham
degree of B.A. from Yale and Ph.D. from Harvard. He was Preceptor in
Politics at Princeton in 1905. Explored Bolivar's Route across
Venezuela and Colombia
in 1906-7. Professor at Yale since 1915, also Lecturer in Diplomatic
Johns Hopkins University. He was a Delegate to the Panama-American
at Santiago de Chile in 1908. In 1909 he explored the Spanish Trade
Aires (Argentina) to Lima (Peru). He was Director of the Yale Peruvian
of 1911. Discovered Vitcos, the last Inca capital and made the first
ascent of Mt.
Coropuna, 21,703 feet above sea-level. He was also Director of two
other Yale Peruvian
expeditions, in 1912 and 1914-15. He is the author of the following
works: - "Journal
of an Exploration across Venezuela and Colombia" [Lib 1909]; "Across South
America"; "In the Wonderland of Peru"[Lib 1913]; "The Monroe
Doctrine, An Obsolete Shibboleth." [Lib 1913])
EVER since the publication of Prescott's
"The Conquest of Peru," [Lib 1874; Vol
1, Vol 2] that land
has been surrounded by more of a romantic halo than any other in the
The marvelous civilization which the Incas had built up in their
lacked one essential feature of great importance - the art of writing.
no written records to give us accounts of what happened previous to the
the Spaniards, except such as were prepared by Spanish chroniclers and
by them from the mouths of native witnesses. There are no hieroglyphics
the stone monuments like those elaborate records that puzzle the
The civilization of the Incas reached its
in architecture and works of engineering. The feats performed by the
were of almost incredible magnitude. Apparently they thought nothing of
a distance of several miles huge blocks of stone weighing from ten to
Fortunately their architecture was of such a
type that extensive examples of it still remain to delight the eye and
the intellect. Among these are certain carved boulders which were
places of worship,
– ancient shrines that attracted pilgrims from far and near. It is
that these carved boulders antedate the Incas by many centuries.
Although in Inca architecture great attention
to right angles, horizontals and perpendiculars, the houses being
rectangular and the more beautiful walls laid out with exquisite
of such principles, there exist in the ancient carvings on the boulders
that the megalithic folk – as the pre-Incas are sometimes called – had
a high appreciation
of the symbolic numbers three, five and seven, and of the significance
angles, squares and steps.
The most interesting of all these ancient
Nusta Isppana, near Vitcos, in the heart of the Vilcabamba country at
where Manco, the last Inca, who was set up by Pizarro and rebelled
sought refuge. In the words of Prescott, "The royal fugitive took
the remote fastnesses of the Andes."
In 1911 I had the good fortune to be able to
Yale-Peruvian Expedition into this region, which is indeed one of the
in all the highland country of South America. While our tasks included
geology, biology and anthropology, and we were prepared to make
of this virtually unexplored region, one of our chief objects was the
Vitcos, the capital of the last Inca.
We were able to locate it because of the
of its principal shrine, the holiest place near Vitcos, which was
described as follows
by Father Calancha in an early Spanish chronicle. I give a free
the chronicle: –
"Close to Vitcos,
in a village called Chuquipalpa, is a House of the Sun, and in it a
over a spring of water (now called Nusta Isppana) where the Devil
appears as a visible
manifestation and was worshipped by those idolaters. This was the
of these forested mountains. (The word ''mochadero” is the common name
Indians apply to their places of worship.")
Now let us look at some of the features of this
shrine, the principal place of worship in this region. The photographs
give a better
idea of it than I can in words, but you will notice that on the north
side of the
rock its face has been cut away, leaving in relief certain projections.
top are three arranged in a triangular position; beneath them is a row
– one toward the east being set off at a little distance from the other
though of more importance. Below these and leading down to what was
formerly a pool
of water, are two flights of stairs, of three and five steps. On the
of the rock; that is, on the south side, is a series of carvings, the
feature of which is a large square cut in the solid rock. It is surely
that this ancient shrine which was undoubtedly the most sacred place
for a very
large extent of country, should have given such prominence to a
the square and the mystic numbers three, five and seven.
An event occurred near here at the time of the
Conquest which is also very interesting. It is related in full in the
of the Inca Garcilasso de la Vega, who was Prescott's chief authority.
was at war with the Spaniards from the year following their coming
until 1546. Several
Spanish refugees, whom one of the chroniclers calls "Fugitive Spanish
having fled from the power of the Pizarros, were living with Manco
Inca, in Vitcos.
The Inca to entertain them had prepared a
near his palace, which was a few hundred yards from this ancient
shrine. One day
when playing with some of the Spanish refugees, the Inca got into a
them in regard to the game. One of the Spaniards, who had often lost
in playing before, became so rude and insolent toward the Inca that the
who was apparently fairly good-tempered – could not stand it. The Incas
and not excitable and could hardly understand the wild fury of the
this game. The Inca pushed the Spaniard violently away, bidding him
whom he talked in such a rude manner. The refugee, not considering in
either his own safety or that of his companions, picked up one of the
struck the Inca on the head so as to kill him.
The followers of the Inca, enraged at the death
prince, at once attacked the Spaniards, who fled into a house and
defended it with
their swords until the Incas set fire to the thatched roof and forced
to come out. They were then assaulted and killed by the soldiers of the
followed I shall endeavor to give as nearly as possible in the words of
"When the followers
of the Inca secured the dead bodies, out of pure madness they would
have eaten them
raw to show the wrath which they had against them, even though they
dead. Nevertheless they determined that the bodies should be burned and
ashes should be scattered downstream in order that there might not
remain any trace
nor vestige of them. But finally it was decided to cast them out into
in order that the birds of the air and beasts of the field might devour
decided on this, for they were not able to think of any greater
punishment for the
The enormity of the punishment and its highly
character were evidently selected by the Inca nobles as best fitting
of the crime which had been committed in murdering their political and
chief. To their minds the casting out of the bodies to be devoured by
of the air and beasts of the field was evidently a more horrible
penalty than that
of having the bodies burned and the ashes scattered so that no
remembrance of them
might be left. It is surely extremely interesting to learn the details
of the punishment
which the Incas thought most nearly fitted the most serious crime of
Another ancient pre-Inca shrine is located not
the city of Abancay. It is called Concacha and seems to be particularly
to presenting the symbolism of steps which are arranged in threes and
all recollection of the importance of this shrine and its significance
Finally let me call your attention to Machu
the most beautiful wall that exists in Peru, one of the most beautiful
in the world.
The photographs do not do it justice, but it is quite evident, I think,
we have an ornamental wall constructed with the utmost care and art.
design is that of a square and part of a circle. The blocks of which
the wall was
constructed were selected from the finest and purest white granite
it was made without steel or iron tools by people who understood only
with stone, such was their devotion to the principles of horizontals
and right angles
that we have this simple form of beauty exemplified to a remarkable
is no cement or mortar used in this construction. The blocks were
together, their interior surfaces not being flat nor square, but
block fits into another so that the wall must stand or fall as a whole.
It seems evident to me that the ancient race,
such remarkable monuments in the Andes, must have appreciated some of
principles of the Craft. This race still exists. And it is the belief
of those of
us who have spent most time in the Andes, that the future of the Andean
depends on the millions of Indians living there today who are the
the former builders. Unfortunately their present leaders, both civil
have permitted them to become steeped in ignorance and immorality.
Their tax gatherers
are so interested in the revenue from alcohol (aguardiente) and cocaine
they willingly overlook the fearful evils which the unrestricted use of
is working among the majority of their countrymen. With proper laws,
on the use of drugs and liquors, the blessings of education and
is no reason why the great majority of the denizens of the Central
not in time again enjoy some of the blessings of their glorious past.
There is strength
in the bone and sinew of this fallen race to enable it to be raised to
level where it once worked.
The Palace -- [A Poem]
I was King and
a Mason – a master proven and skilled –
I cleared me ground for a Palace such as a King should build.
I decreed and cut down to my levels, presently, under the silt,
I came on the wreck of a Palace such as a King had built.
There was no worth in the fashion – there was no wit in the plan –
Hither and thither, aimless, the ruined footings ran –
Masonry, brute, mishandled, but carven on every stone:
"After me cometh a Builder. Tell him, I too have known."
Swift to my use in my trenches, where my well-planned groundworks grew
I tumbled his quoins and ashlars, and cut and reset them anew.
Lime I milled of his marbles; burned it, slacked it, and spread;
Taking and leaving at pleasure the gifts of the humble dead.
Yet I despised not nor gloried; yet as we wrenched them apart
I read in the razed foundations the heart of that builder's heart.
As though he had risen and pleaded, so did I understand
The form of the dream he had followed in the face of the thing he had
When I was a King and a Mason – in the open noon of my pride,
They sent me a Word from the Darkness – They whispered and called me
They said – "The end is forbidden." They said – "Thy use is fulfilled,
"And thy Palace shall stand as that other's – the spoil of a King who
I called my men from my trenches, my quarries, my wharves and my sheers.
All I had wrought I abandoned to the faith of the faithless years.
Only I cut on the timber – only I carved on the stone:
After me cometh a Builder. Tell him, I too have known!
By Bro F. Idlerman, New
IDEAS are expressed only by signs. When
ideas he may do so only by symbols. Our man would convey [??] to his
language is but a succession of signs. Words are symbols, signs of an
we as free and accepted Masons choose also to speak to one another by
These stand for certain truths we hold as necessary to Masonry and
true manhood. These rods, borne by the stewards, are of value only as
they are signs
of ideas. As Masons we seek the interpretation of these ideas and
to inculcate them in the minds of all who shall hereafter accept our
The first idea they symbolize is that of
The stewards, bearing these rods, meet the candidate at the door. He is
that all his interests are to be safe-guarded. He may commit himself
to the stewards, for the emblems of their office signify security and
This is among the highest comforts of man, to feel the safety
vouchsafed by the
confident strength of his brothers. It is surpassed only by the
protection man realizes
as he commits himself into the safe keeping of his Creator. David
confidence in such a trust by the symbol of a rod, "When I walk through
valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil for thou art with
me, Thy rod
and Thy staff they comfort me."
There is corresponding obligation upon the part
stewards. The implicit trust of a brother calls for a faithful
discharge of your
stewardship. The security you afford within the lodge must be widened
by the daily
conduct in society. Let it never be said of you as Emerson said of some
of his generation:
"What you are speaks so loud I cannot hear what you say."
The second symbol is progress. You are to meet
not as stationary guards but as those who shall mark the path of
progress as you
advance from knowledge to knowledge in Masonry. The advance you assist
him in making
is unhasting and unresting. You are ever urging him to further light
The rods you bear represent the divinely appointed state of man. Truth
but eternally. Man can never attain to perfect knowledge here. He must
"Now I know in part." To indicate by word or conduct that full
is ours, is to arrest the purpose of the Creator in us. To symbolize in
fashion the progress of the mind toward the light is to render a
service of incalculable
worth to any man.
The rods symbolize guidance. Neatly imbedded in
head of each rod is a star. From time immemorial the stars have been
fingers for man. He has been guided by them across the trackless
the tangled wilderness and over the snowbound waste of the long Polar
deep sea has not been able to lose the sailor, for the friendly stars
have led him
unerringly to his port of entry. So the rods are set for the proper and
in the truths of Masonry. But truth cannot exist apart from
incarnation. A thousand
blazing symbols of metal fashioned bring neither comfort nor light
except they live
in daily conduct. You who bear the emblem of guidance must of necessity
the moral worth indicated by your high office.
The symbols can only have meaning as they find
of their meaning first in the quality of merit in the men who bear
them. Your dignity,
fidelity and uprightness make meaningful and winsome all the moral
virtue of protection,
progress and guidance. Other offices, within the lodge, may be invested
honor but your constant and necessary duties make incumbent upon you a
and serious performance of the work assigned you. As you invest your
this threefold significance, will you lift it out of mere perfunctory
high and noble symbolism. Those who take their first steps in Masonry
tutelage will catch a vision of the sublimer possibilities and conserve
generations, the value of our worthy order.
Legato -- [A
drew a circle
that kept me out –
Heretic, rebel, a thing to flout.
But love and I had the wit to win;
We drew a circle that took him in."
"Aye! draw ye circlet of love,
To encompass forever
'An heretic, rebel, a thing to flout';
Draw it 'round the wide cold earth –
Religion, races, clans include –
None of earth's creatures, leave standing without."
"Say to warrior, 'pause awhile!'
Benighted soul, 'here is light!'
To ignorance, say, stupidity, fear,
'Come ye, from your narrow house –
Come and ye be made whole again –
Come, learn of THAT, to love and revere.' "
Epilogue -- [A Poem]
Dr. M. E. Walton
Come sentinels, e'en as the breath of birth;
Seems ever, some must be always without –
It is then, alas! the WAY OF EARTH."
S. D., January
The Great Prayer -- [A Poem]
original of this
composition is in the G.A.R. Hall Museum at the State House, Topeka,
Kan. It was
captured during the Civil War, at Charleston, S.C., by a brother of
Mrs. S. B. Helmas
of Kendallville, Ind. The poem is printed on heavy satin.
The Lord's Prayer
to the mercy seat
our souls doth gather,
To do our duty unto thee – Our Father,
To whom all praise, all honor should be given;
For Thou art the great God, – who art in Heaven,
Thou by Thy wisdom rul'st the world's whole frame;
Forever, therefore, – Hallowed be Thy name.
Let nevermore delays divide us from
Thy glorious grace but let – Thy kingdom come.
Let Thy commands opposed be by none,
But Thy good pleasure and – Thy will be done.
And let promptness to obey, be even
The very same – in earth as 'tis in Heaven;
Then for our souls, O Lord, we also pray,
Thou wouldst be pleased to – give us this day
The food of life, wherewith our souls are fed,
Sufficient raiment, and – our daily bread,
With every needful thing do Thou relieve us,
And of Thy mercy pity – and forgive us
All our misdeeds, for Him whom Thou didst please
To make an offering for – our trespasses,
And forasmuch, O Lord, as we believe
That Thou wilt pardon us – as we forgive,
Let that love teach, wherewith Thou dost acquaint us
To pardon all – those who trespass against us;
And though, sometimes, Thou find'st we have forgot
This love for Thee, yet help – and lead us not
Through soul or body's want, to desperation;
Nor let earth's gain drive us – into temptation;
Let not the soul of any true believer
Fall in the time of trial – but deliver,
Yea, save them from the malice of the devil,
And, in both life and death, keep – us from evil;
This pray we, Lord, for that of Thee, from whom
This may be had – for Thine is the Kingdom,
This world is of Thy work, its wondrous story,
To Thee belongs – the power and the glory;
And all Thy wondrous work have ended never,
But will remain forever, and – forever.
Thus we poor creatures would confess again,
And thus would say eternally
The Eternal Sacrifice -- [A Poem]
The altars of self-sacrifice,
Where Love its arms has opened wide,
And man for man has calmly died,
I see the same white wings outspread
That hovered o'er the Master's head.
Symbolism of the Apron -- [A Poem]
fair and stainless
thing I take
To be my badge for virtue's sake;
Its ample strings that gird me round
My constant Cable-tow are found;
And as securely they are tied
So may true faith with me abide;
And as I face the sunny south
I pledge to God my Mason's truth,
That while on earth I do remain
My apron shall not have a stain.
This fair and stainless thing I raise
In memory of Apprentice days,
When on the checkered pavement wide,
With gauge and gavel well supplied,
I keep my garments free from soil,
Though laboring in a menial toil;
And as I face the golden west,
I call my Maker to attest
That while on earth I do remain
My apron shall not have a stain.
This fair and stainless thing I lower;
Its 'Prentice aid I need no more,
For laws and principles are given
The fellow-craft direct from Heaven, –
To help the needy, keep a trust,
Observe the precepts of the just;
And as I face the darkened north
I send this solemn promise forth,
That while on earth I do remain
My apron shall not have a stain.
This fair and stainless thing I fold,
A Master Mason now behold,
A welcome guest in every land,
With princes and with kings to stand;
Close tyled within my heart of hearts
I keep all secret arts and parts,
And try to walk the heavenly road
In daily intercourse with God;
As I fate the mystic east
I vow by Him I love the best,
That while on earth I do remain
My apron shall not have a stain.
This fair and stainless thing I doff: –
But though I take my apron off,
And lay the stainless badge aside,
Its teachings ever shall abide,
For God has given light divine
That we may walk opposed to sin;
And sympathy and brotherly love
Are emanations from above;
And life itself is only given
To square and shape our souls for Heaven,
The glorious temple in the sky,
The grand celestial lodge on high.
The Great Landmark
It is an unchangeable ancient Landmark of the
that there is but one Masonic dogma. We construct a universal religious
thereupon, as a part of which we teach belief in immortality, and
endeavor to inculcate
other tenets of our profession; but our sole dogma is the Landmark of
a Supreme Being – omnipresent, omniscient, omnipotent, the creating and
Power of all things. No man may be a Freemason unless he is a believer
No neophyte ever has been or ever shall be permitted vision of our
reception of our obligations until he has openly, unequivocally, and
this belief. Beyond that we inquire and require nothing of sectarianism
Melvin M. Johnson.
Correspondence Circle Bulletin
– No. 3
Edited By Bro. Robert I.
Clegg, Caxton Building, Cleveland, Ohio
Operative Masonry – Early
Days in the Masonic Era
By Robert I. Clegg
WE Masons deem Masonry as being peculiarly
some Masons indeed being quoted to the effect that in their judgment
a religion. Who of us but at some time has heard of a brother in his
saying "Masonry is a good enough religion for me"? But Masonry itself
makes no such claim. At best it stands as the handmaid of religion, in
and among all faiths earnestly supporting and serving those accepted
of morality in which all good men agree.
As was shown in the paper prepared for the
issue of the Bulletin of the National Masonic Research Society there
was a time
when in the church and outside these sacred precincts the craftsmen of
freely of their money, their numbers, and in fact of all their
advance the cause of the prevailing religion. It is only fair to
suppose that in
all other matters these workmen were equally advanced and aggressive.
Some of these
angles of their organizations and of their methods will be taken up in
Perhaps a word or two of special explanation is
at this stage. I am dealing with a period when many bodies of workmen
other's practices. For one reason of this similarity there was the
of authority from whence they derived their characters. The Government
liberty to proceed for similar objects and in the attainment of these
would no doubt find it very desirable in meeting all the requirements
of the law
to follow in each other's footsteps. Thus the associations of
carpenters, of ironworkers,
of goldsmiths, of tanners, as well as of Masons and the other
societies, had like
officers and laws. Such little differences as crept in were occasioned
by the inevitable
problems incident to each trade and profession and the successive
them that periodically called for attention and settlement.
The general construction of these bodies and
was known as the gild system. Common to all the recognized trades
approved by the
Government we can examine it as the exemplar of our own fraternity
was but one branch of it. I am also of opinion that Masonry has an
though at this moment I shall not venture into this far distant field
The various crafts were often termed "the
Subject to the same city and national government it frequently happened
laws enacted for their control shed much light upon the purposes of the
and the manner in which they were regarded by the citizens at large.
An old ordinance of the city of London provided
punishment for those who were "rebellious, contradictory, or fractious"
against the Masters of the Mysteries "that so such persons may not duly
their duties." The preliminary part of the same enactment throws light
the purpose of these early craft organizations.
"Item, it is ordained that all the mysteries of
the city of London shall be lawfully regulated and governed, each
according to its
nature in due manner, that so no knavery, false workmanship, or deceit,
found in any manner in the said mysteries; for the honor of the good
folks of the
said mysteries, and for the common profit of the people. And in each
shall be chosen and sworn four or six, or more or less, according as
shall need; which persons, so chosen and sworn, shall have full power
from the Mayor
well and lawfully to do and to perform the same."
Then follow a series of fines and terms of
for such as "shall thereof be attained" of interfering with the
out of the above plan of craft administration.
Why would the city take so direct an interest
control of the crafts, you may ask. If so careful a supervision and
of the situation is taken then is it not likely that the very same
fount of authority
would have something to say as to the manner in which the members as
well as their
officers may be selected?
You may also rightfully infer that the city
something of the same relationship to the several crafts as is now
occupied by the
Grand Lodges. Such would appear to have been the case in very large
if you please the following ordinance which accompanies the one just
quoted in reference
to the obedience and respect due to the Masters of mysteries:
as well in times past, out of memory, as also in modern times, the city
is wont to be defended and governed by the aid and counsels as well as
of the reputable
men of the trades-merchant as of the other trades-handicraft; and from
of old it
hath been the usage, that no strange person, native or alien, as to
and condition there is no certain knowledge, shall be admitted to the
city, unless first, the merchants or traders of the city following the
the person so to be admitted intends to adopt, shall be lawfully
so, by such his fellow citizens, so convoked, the Mayor and Aldermen
being certified as to the condition and trustworthiness of the persons
so to be
admitted, may know whether such persons ought to be admitted or
rejected; the whole
community demands, that the form aforesaid, so far as concerns the more
trades and handicrafts, shall in future be inviolably observed, that so
in future may against the provision aforesaid be admitted to the
freedom of the
What Mason worth the name but will say with all
heart that it were well for us now that in selecting material for
choice should always be made in a manner to insure the obtaining of
upon whom the community may well rely for counsel, for defense, or for
Here and there in traversing the directions
these early ordinances of the gilds we find a glimmer at least by which
been borrowed for the thoughtful Masons of the present day in making
of various old-time customs. Who, for instance, has not wondered at
that could not be given in the absence of one of the three possessors?
Years ago in a foreign land I went as a boy
grandfather to the meeting of a trade organization of which he was
official chest of the society caught my eye. It contained books and
papers as well
as other valuables of which I knew little or nothing. These did not
interest me. What did attract my especial attention was the fact that
the box was
secured by three locks. Why three when one was ample for such security
necessary? But it was explained to me that the three keys were in the
of each of three responsible officers of the organization and that the
not then be opened unless these three officers with their respective
keys were present.
Such a custom is very old. In the reign of
of England, 1307-1327, there was passed an ordinance by the City
Fathers of London
that "Also, it was demanded that the common seal should remain in
a certain chest under six locks; of which locks three Alderman should
keys, and certain reputable men of the Commonalty the three other keys."
That a candidate for Freemasonry shall himself
free agent is well known and is most desirable. We go further and
require him to
be freeborn. This does not appear to be a universal demand made of the
as in England, for example, the requirement is that he be a "freeman."
There is an obvious distinction between the two and our practice in
substantially exacts that both conditions shall exist.
Here, again, the matter is of very old usage.
avoiding disgrace and scandal unto the city of London" it was ordained
"that from henceforth no foreigner shall be enrolled as an apprentice,
received unto the freedom of the said city by way of apprenticeship,
unless he shall
first make oath that he is a freeman and not a bondman. And whoever
be received unto the freedom of the said city, by purchase or in any
other way than
by apprenticeship, shall make the same oath, and shall also find six
of the said city, who shall give security for him, as such from of old
wont to be done.
"And if it shall so happen that any such
is admitted unto the freedom of the said city upon a false suggestion,
being ignorant thereof, immediately after it shall have become
notorious unto the
Mayor and Alderman that such person is a bondman, he shall lose the
freedom of the
city and shall pay a fine for such his deceit at the discretion of the
Alderman, saving always such liberty as pertains unto the soil of the
"Also, if it shall happen in future, and may it
not so chance, that such bondman, a person, that is to say, at the time
birth his father was a bondman, is elected to judicial rank in the said
of Alderman, for example, Sheriff, or Mayor; unless before receiving
he shall notify unto the Mayor and Alderman such his servile condition,
pay unto the Chamberlain one hundred pounds, to the use of the city,
shall lose the freedom, as already stated."
Riley in his edition of the "Liber Albus,"
the "White Book" of the city of London, further points out some
of the Aldermen of the gild epoch which have an interest in our present
he, "High honor was paid to the Aldermen in ancient times. Indeed, no
was accepted as Alderman unless he was free from deformity in body,
wise and discreet
in mind, rich, honest, trustworthy, free, and on no account of low or
lest perchance the disgrace or opprobrium that might be reflected upon
him by reason
of his birth, might have the additional effect of casting a slur upon
Alderman and the whole city as well. And hence it is that from of old
no one was
made apprentice, or at all events admitted to the freedom of the said
he was known to be of free condition."
Contained in the Liber Albus [Lib 1861] is the oath of the
Masters and Wardens of the mysteries. This I transcribe. It will be
there is left a blank for the filling in of the name of the
organization to which
the testifying officials are accredited.
"You shall swear,
that well and lawfully you shall overlook the art or mystery of … of
which you are
Masters, or Wardens, for the year elected. And the good rules and
the same mystery, approved here by the Court, you shall keep and cause
to be kept.
And all the defaults that you shall find therein, done contrary
thereto, you shall
present unto the Chamberlain of the city, from time to time, sparing no
favor, and aggrieving no one for hate. Extortion or wrong unto no one,
of your office, you shall do; nor unto anything that shall be against
and peace of the King, or of the city, you shall consent. But for the
you shall be in office, in all things pertaining unto the said mystery,
to the good laws and franchises of the said city, well and lawfully you
yourself. So God you help, and the Saints."
These citations from the legal enactments of
do not convey all that could and should be said of the middle ages.
That is the
era from whence we Masons have drawn so freely of inspiration, of
even of phraseology. Romantic were the industrial activities. From the
upon the altar to the pinnacle of the lofty spire reaching high toward
the buildings of that day and especially the structures housing the
of God, everything was done in the devotion of a simple straightforward
workmanship, a practical genius for constructional invention, the
practice of a
craft direct, faithful and self-respecting.
Says Batchelder: [Lib 1910]
"It was once the
glory of art to be of service. It is difficult for us to fully realize
of an age when art was actually practiced by a great mass of people;
in stone and wood, workers in iron, textile weavers, potters,
daily opportunity and incentive to bring invention to bear upon their
to apply creative thought to the work of their hands. It was a time
were architects; when workmen were designers; when contracts called for
more than sound materials and honest workmanship, – the art was thrown
in as a matter
And he further gives us an illuminating insight
conditions by which these workmen were trained.
received by the mediaeval craftsman was peculiar to the gild system of
Many of the masters whose names are familiar to us now in our study of
of art were duly apprenticed to a craft as soon as they could read,
write, and count.
Often at an age of ten years they went to the home of the master
workman, with whom
their apprenticeship was to be served, where as was the custom of the
lived. The years of apprenticeship were years of hard work, often of
in the great variety of commissions undertaken by the shops of the time
was presented to lend a hand at many interesting tasks. There seems to
a spirit of cooperation among the various shops and workmen that the
competition of modern times does not permit.
his apprenticeship a lad became a companion or journeyman worker, and
for his degree, if it may be so termed, by submitting to an examination
title of master workman. In this examination he was called upon not
only to produce
his masterpiece, but to fashion such tools of his craft as were
necessary for its
completion. The standards of the gilds were so high that to become a
the production of a piece of work satisfactory to the judges
artistically as well
as technically. This completed the education of a craftsman of the
a workman who was encouraged at every step of his training to combine
utility, technical skill with honest workmanship."
Further on in speaking of the versatility of
craftsmen, he proceeds:
"When they in
turn became master workmen, we know not whether to call them goldsmiths
workers, carvers or sculptors, painters or architects, for their
training was such
that they could turn their hands to any of these with distinction.
build a church, cut the stone, lay the mosaics, paint the frescoes, or
crucifix, and we know not where most to admire him. While Ghilerti was
the production of the bronze doors for the Florentine baptistery, his
were seldom so early at the foundry but that they found him there in
his cap and
apron. Brunelleschi watched the building of the cathedral from his
bench long before
he dreamed that it would be his part to crown it with its great dome;
and when he
and Donatello went to Rome to study the antique, they replenished their
by following their craft. What manner of architects were these who went
to the quarries
and picked out their own stones, who superintended the construction,
erection of scaffolds, who could teach others how to lay the mosaics or
ornament; and during leisure intervals wrote sonnets, built bridges,
and invented weapons of defense? When a master received a commission to
church, a municipal palace, a fountain, or what not, he took with him
his own journeymen
and apprentices; and when the commission was an important one, he
him to cooperate, in a spirit that knew little of rivalry or jealousy,
master workers of his day."
From this excellent description of the craft in
gild days much may be conjectured of the progress by which Masonry has
it is today. To some of these angles of discussion I shall later
return. That in
the Craft there grew up a method of perpetuating the instruction slowly
the masters is only to be expected. These secrets of the trade would
only be confided
to the safe depositories of faithful breasts.
Geometry and symbolism would be as they are now
by expert designers for practically laying out their work. To me the
always suggests the cross-sectioned paper of the engineer. To me every
an aid to the memory. All there is of Masonry breathes the craft soul
labor, the means and the machinery to impress upon the receptive mind
moral and physical importance.
We cannot in one such paper as the foregoing
the middle ages with the transition period marked off for us by the
era ushered in by the celebrated union of 1717.
Neither can we say much if anything now of that
earlier period of these geometrical builders of the Egyptian temples
or of the Roman Collegia with its trades union methods, or of the
mysteries of Greece
and other lands. All have a bearing of much consequence upon our own
Freemasonry has inherited by a long line of
a philosophy and a nomenclature, a ceremonial system, the outgrowth of
heads of the wisest, and of hearts most devoted. Love and wisdom has
upon it in abundance. Years of many centuries have dignified it. A hale
age for it claims unbounded respect. Service is its purpose, betterment
Even as the craftsmen of the past loved their
and through its medium turned rawest materials into forms of
so were they cautious in their materials of membership, selecting them
in their choice and government practicing such methods as were approved
and national authorities. Yea, so are we compelled by our profession to
discreet and skilful. By the correct selection and perfection of every
the structure do we build aright the edifice Masonic.
* * *
Notes for Further Research
upon Operative Masonry
The "Liber Albus" [Lib 1861] is a compilation
from the archives of the city of London. Its references are of date
prior to the
year 1419. A translation from its original text in Latin and
Anglo-Norman was made
by Henry T. Riley and published by Richard Griffin and Co. in 1861.
found in public libraries but is now out of print and only to be
those tireless bibliophiles, the book-hunters of Masonry. My dear
friend, the late
Scott Bonham, once urged his readers to buy the "Liber Albus" but at
time he was not aware that it was out of usual trade circles and only
to be reached
through old-book dealers.
My references to Batchelder are to his
on "Design in Theory and Practice," [Lib 1910] published by the Macmillan
Co. of New York, London,
and Toronto. I quote the 1910 edition.
A most charming book on the gilds is that of
and Companies of London" [Lib 1908] by George Unwin, and
published by Methuen and Co.,
36 Essex street, W.C., London. From this work I have not borrowed but
my essay would
have been much improved if I had had occasion to freely quote from Mr.
work lends itself more aptly to another paper I have in mind. At
present I need
only call attention to several points of importance. First there is an
bibliographical list from which many references can be drawn to what
be obtainable in your local libraries or for purchase from the book
the preface is an outline that may profitably be followed in the study
of the gild
system not only in Great Britain but on the continent. My Unwin has
among his several
chapters one dealing with a class of gilds that were neither merchant
Of such was the English Gild of Knights. There was also in France the
for the preservation of peace, La Commune de la Paix. In purpose and in
this association strongly resembled the body that provides the legend
for the grade
of Patriarch Noachite.
I have not quoted from the "Hole Craft and
of Masons." [Lib*] This book published in 1894 is, I understand,
off the market. My own copy was secured through the author, Bro. Edward
Jr. In London the book was published by Swan, Sonnenschein and Company,
and in New
York by Macmillan and Co. In the introduction Bro. Conder says: "The
Company of Masons of the City of London enjoys, beside the interest
it on account of its antiquity and continuity, the peculiar
distinction, above all
other gilds, of being one of the principal connecting links in that
chain of evidence
which proves that the modern social cult, known as the Society of Free
Masons, is lineally descended from the old Fraternity of Masons which
in the early days of monastic architecture, now known by the
of Gothic. The history of this Company will I think conclusively prove
traditions and moral teachings of the old Fellowship which undoubtedly
Britain in the 12th and 13th centuries, were preserved by the Masons
London, after the downfall of the Church, in 1530, until the middle of
century – at which period non-operative masons and others carried on
the old Society
with considerable energy, their participation culminating, in 1717, in
of a Grand Lodge, and the subsequent rapid formation of Lodges in all
parts of the
country." Maybe I shall later return to an examination of the evidence
Bro. Conder proposes to prove his point. It was with such a thought in
I purposely refrained from using on this occasion his temptingly
"The Cathedral Builders" [Lib 1899] by Leader Scott is
also not a readily obtainable book. For my own choice I can get along
with a substitute, "The Comacines, Their Predecessors and Their
[Lib 1910]Written by Bro. W.
Ravenscroft in most readable style – its brevity is the only fault I
can see in
it. The publisher is Elliot Stock, 62 Paternoster Row, E.C., London.
shows the symbols of the Comacines have a pertinent interest to
Freemasons, as in
the case of the lion, the knot of Solomon, the cable tow, etc.
In Mackey's Encyclopedia, [Lib 1914; (no
Graphics version)] published
by the Masonic History Co. of New York, look up the following
Ancient; Osiris, Mysteries of; Egyptian Mysteries; Cabiric Mysteries;
Cavern; Essenes; Comacines; Druses; Druidical Mysteries; Culdees;
Colleges of Artificers; Gilds; Cologne, Charter of; Crusades; Oath of
Stone Masons of the Middle Ages; Strict Observance; Hund, Baron von;
The Ars Coronatorum or transactions of the
Lodge of London have scattered through their scholarly pages much of
degree of interest in this line of investigation. A complete index is
The series of volumes is also very rare. Stray copies and partial sets
to be obtained. My reference to the practical use of the mosaic
pavement in laying
out a building is borne out by a paper in the "Ars" by Sir Caspar
Clarke whose experience in the Orient enabled him to see this method
by the Eastern workmen.
My brother engineers may be also interested in
that in an interview with the famous builders of bridges, Gustave
explained the probable method by which the early builders managed to
constructions for their remarkably daring edifices, aqueducts and so
forth. At that
time the structural analysis by mathematical means was of course not so
as at the present day. A method whereby weights suspended by cords; a
sort of inverted
balance, probably gave the early builders practical foothold for
finding the direction
and amount of the forces to be withstood by their structures. Such
methods and the
general system of proportions for buildings in common use were
secretly to pupils and sworn associates. Here would be another means
for the mutual
protection and also for profitable prominence to clients of the
My few suggestions above are by no means
exhaust all the sources of information on this subject. There are many
I do not pretend to have enumerated what some of my brethren will
and of consequence. But as I shall come back to this topic, and as I
hope to deal
then with matters mentioned in certain of the foregoing references I
take the opportunity
of calling attention to them now.
* * *
Small Libraries Traveling
For Special Researches
As your "Correspondence Circle Bulletin No. 1"
seems to invite suggestions as to how Research Society and others may
the home study, permit me to make this suggestion:
Let there be made up a goodly number of small
libraries for different lodges that are willing to pay transportation
possibly a small rental as well – composed of books papers and
upon subjects that individuals care to study about. For instance: I
want to study:
Early History of Masonry; The Unknown Years of the Life of Christ;
and The Bible.
Let the great Masonic Library make me up a
library containing matter pertaining to any one or all of these
subjects and I will
read my fill and write papers that may be read by other brethren, if
Go after the nearest Masonic library, large or
Put that proposition right up to them. Maybe there is no Masonic
library of considerable
size in your State but I shall refuse to believe anything of the sort
until I am
positively shown otherwise. The State that includes within its borders
one such Mason as Trevanion W. Hugo of Duluth is not likely in any
lag in the procession.
But if for any reason there is difficulty in
the particular books you need, then appeal beyond the confines of your
late Scott Bonham, president of the Masonic Library Association at
always held that his books were made for use and not to be mere shelf
delighted to send them to knowledge-seeking Masons. Never did he
restrict them to
the Masons of his own State. The Grand Lodge of Iowa has also under the
guidance of Grand Secretary Parvin at Cedar Rapids, evolved a system of
distribution active throughout the State. While I have no authority to
the authorities would do in the event of an inquiry coming to them from
jurisdiction I am confident that it would get very cordial
consideration and if
it were at all possible with due regard to all interests involved I am
would be well satisfied with the action accorded you.
Your suggestion reminds me somewhat of the one
by Bro. Keplinger of Illinois. He pointed out the desirability of an
study of the Pyramids in their connection with Freemasonry. Both he and
already done quite a little study along lines of unquestioned
importance to your
brother Masons. Can I not induce you to put into written form the
results of your
researches? I do not ask you to attempt to put on record all that you
a part of the story at a time is all that I would venture to suggest
Then read it to your respective lodges or to your local study clubs.
you have amended it following the discussion it receives, please
forward each paper
* * *
Study Clubs and Lodge
Have noticed in the September issue of THE
open letter to the members by Brother Robert I. Clegg, which I have
been much interested
in as we have a little "get-together" meeting from time to time, and it
doesn't seem that we are working on any particular lines whereby we
It might be best to describe in detail what our
are for. As we live several miles from any organized Lodge of
Freemasons, we find
it difficult to attend Lodge with any regularity at all; and we have
and trying to get together in a way that might develop into the
a Lodge at this place. But we find that it is a hard matter to keep all
interested at the same time.
Now your letter seems to me to open up a way
we might develop more interest and at the same time enable us to
in Masonry, so if we did in time organize a Lodge, we would be better
perform our Masonic duties.
We will appreciate any suggestions that you
and if you think that an organization such as suggested in Brother
would be what we need, I will take steps immediately to see that all
in this vicinity who are not members of the N.M.R.S. become members, as
I am sure
I would have no trouble in doing so, as they are all as anxious for
ground to found an organization upon as I am.
Trusting that you can help us in this matter
best wishes for the success of the whole movement, I am,
Cordially and fraternally yours.
Wade. Waune. Oreo.
At the moment I do not possess any means at
determining the local population available to support a Masonic lodge
in your immediate
neighborhood. Obviously the best way to keep up the Masonic interest in
would be by the organization of a lodge and if this is at all feasible
I would urge
that you communicate with your Grand Secretary to that effect in order
may start off in the right way. If, however, for any reason you are
unable to do
this, then you cannot do better than to hold the present get-together
such time as the other plan may be carried into effect.
Of course you will need to be all the more
about every one of you being Master Masons of officially approved
lodges. In the
absence of any lodge there is not the ready means of knowing through
there of the standing of all your acquaintances.
Having these preliminaries constantly in mind
the list of any local members of the National Masonic Research Society,
your brethren. Agree upon a few necessary officers. The Secretary is
the most important.
Select one having plenty of patience, unstinted charity, enlarged
of courtesy, systematic of habits, punctual and ardent. Granted these
and you have
a treasure. If you can also have a President possessing a love for the
of Masonry and an ability to draw forth the best that is in his
membership and from
all other sources, and to do these things with tact and success, you
are again blessed.
If moreover you have a group of brethren capable and willing to support
you have all the elements for proficiency and progress.
But the more I think of your isolation, the
more I deem
it best that you should have the benefit at the earliest moment of the
your Grand Lodge officers as I have already mentioned. They will very
advice whereby you can the better keep in touch with the Masonic work
of your jurisdiction
and this is indeed very important. This Bulletin of ours will monthly
of instructive quality that may be read at your meetings and I shall be
to give you any additional information that may be conducive to the
of your gatherings.
* * *
Systematic Study of the
I have realized even since I have been received
this Fraternity the necessity of some uniform plan to study the history
of Freemasonry. I mean some plan that is not complicated and not too
deep for the
ordinary Mason who has never been so fortunate as to receive a good
am anxious to organize a study club in our little town. It would be
hard to get
a number interested, but I believe I can do it.
I would like some plan that will start right in
first degree which will teach its history and the origin of the
Then advance to the second degree in the same way, and to the Master
I don't mean to run through them briefly, but to go into them in detail.
I believe we could spend all this fall and
the first degree, as we would only be able to meet twice each month. I
the "Builders," and I think it is great, but it might be a little hard
for the man to understand who has never done much reading.
I have been much interested in the study of
for some time and have been an active worker, and I am willing to join
which proposes some plan to educate our members more and more in the
the Order by a systematic study of its history, its tradition, its
We, who have been active workers, know the only
to acquire knowledge is to study, and it is surprising, as well as
the great number of members in our fraternity who have practically no
as to its history and its teaching. So I believe the only way to make
become stronger is to encourage more study by the individual member.
No, I don't
mean it to be the only way, but I mean it will be a great and important
make it stronger.
So if you can give me a start to organize a
by giving me some textbook which will deal on the First Degree, or any
in which you might offer something good, I will make a hard effort to
members of my Lodge – Novinger Lodge 583 in Missouri – interested in
Trusting I may hear favorably from you, and
regards, I remain,
– C. H.
Charlton, P. M., Novinger Lodge 583,
No letter that has so far come to me has more
emphasized the necessity for the work undertaken by the National
Society than yours. You correctly point out that textbooks are needed.
the indispensable Encyclopedia of Mackey what have we? Certain reprints
published by our Society are excellent but they are not exhaustive of
subject of Masonry and they do not pretend to be. As we proceed in the
work of the
Society we shall, every one of us, contribute from all sources
information of the
exact kind you desire. This task will take time. If you will read
little outline I have given for a Masonic course of study in the
you will note the range to be covered by a comprehensive textbook.
I have planned a series of papers on Masonry
announced in the last issue. These have been thought out for the very
by you. They will not in all probability take the degrees in succession
there is some difficulty for me to deal intimately with each degree in
must be truly circumspect in committing to the printed page what he
knows of the
degrees. Perhaps you will do me the favor of advising with me in this
far do you expect me to go? Please let me have the benefit of your
this very important angle of the situation.
Much can be presented to the brethren in this
We can discuss the Monitor freely. Sundry significant facts hinging
upon the ritual
may also be set forth. But the application of many of these particulars
remade by the brethren themselves. What they already know will shed
light upon the
additional information, an illumination unknown to the profane. Each of
of mine will see how limited I must be in what is here said at any time
of the details
of the three degrees mentioned by my good brother Charlton.
He is emphatically right. Masonry is the more
to a Mason
the more he has of it. Masonry grows the stronger upon a Mason the
deeper it is
planted within him. We are Masons, first and last, because of what is
in us. Enlightened
knowledge, enlarged humanity, the soul in contact with agencies for
are the common aspirations of the brotherhood. Together, brethren!
* * *
Planning a Primer for Masons
For the coming Masonic year it has been talked
our Blue Lodge to introduce a series of lectures, perhaps as many as a
will be in the nature of a Masonic education. Feel that subjects should
be so chosen
and arranged that in a measure one will follow another in logical
whole being beneficial in many different ways. It is planned to have
ten thousand words, MSS. of which will be submitted to a committee
and the whole twelve at the end of the year to be made up in book form,
to be presented
to each Master Mason as he is raised, thereby furnishing him with a
it were for his future guidance or at least form a primer for his
Sincerely and fraternally yours,
Good S.W. Joppa Lodge 362, F. &
A.M., Shreveport, La.
My congratulations! You have indeed undertaken
task. That you will perform it admirably and thoroughly is my hearty
there is at any time and in any way an opportunity for me to contribute
to so commendable
an enterprise I and our Society will be delighted to do anything at our
Just how do you propose to go about this project? I am taking it for
you will divide the work. To put the burden of this exploit upon only a
few or of
one or two of the brethren is not easily thinkable, the labor involved
is too great.
Maybe you will organize a number of studious Masons who will
to discuss the progress they have made in the preparation of the
papers. Such a
study club would indeed be a wonderful power for Masonic research. Some
ago a Master of my acquaintance decided that once a month at least he
an hour at a meeting where a paper should be read. I contributed one of
papers, the subject being "William Morgan." Since that time the custom
has prevailed. Would that all these lectures had been preserved as is
of our Shreveport brothers to collect twelve. That the brethren will
hear when they
will not read is clear. Bro. Good's plan contemplates both methods. It
is an ambitious
undertaking, highly creditable and farsighted.
* * *
The Lodge as a Study Club
A considerable number of the Masons in Yonkers
in favor of the furthering of Masonic research and study. There is,
room in Yonkers for a study club, as Jonkheer Lodge devotes a very
portion of the time of its meetings to Masonic history and study.
I believe that better results might be obtained
the existing Lodges, rather than by starting new organizations in the
form of study
clubs, and believe that by-laws such as Jonkheer has, would help the
in the various lodges. The by-laws read as follows: –
Section 4 – The Master
shall cause a portion of the Landmarks, constitution, statutes, and
by-laws to be
read in the Lodge at the first stated communication after his
at such other times as he shall deem proper.
Section 24 – At least
one evening in each Masonic year shall be set apart by the Master for
of matters pertaining to the history, archaeology and antiquities of
– D. D.
Berolzheimer, 17 Battery Place, New
York, N. Y.
It is most gratifying to find lodges so
as to have not only provided in their bylaws for definite times and
the study of Freemasonry, its history, its archaeology, and its
carry them out to an extent that members can see no necessity for
Would that all lodges were equally well provided with bylaws requiring
of energy along educational lines.
Pressure of business in most lodges prevents
leanings of the kind becoming prevalent. Primarily, the purpose of the
is to do what the lodge cannot find opportunity to supply. Several
lodges may furnish
sufficient material in membership to keep one study club a lively point
in any community.
If a lodge is in a sparsely settled region and
of initiation is not weighty there may be many evenings when at the
study club associations could be happily incorporated under the
direction of the
Master. Our larger cities do not permit these variations in the
is too voluminous. Some other plan is required in such cases.
A study club to make effective progress should
often and regularly. An entire evening is not too long for the
presentation of a
paper and for its careful discussion. A lodge to devote as much time as
the literary side of Freemasonry must either have considerable leisure
the conferring of degrees or has a method of conducting its affairs
that is not
I am acquainted with one lodge in New York
had the habit of giving at the meetings a little talk of say fifteen
was and is an exceptionally well-informed Mason and his addresses were
of distinctive value. They could not have the advantage of study club
nevertheless. Time was wanting. Business exacted the minutes. Leisurely
discussion was precluded. Herein is the need for the study club. Let us
about the substitutes. We are all lodge members. Whatever the lodge can
do to advantage
we all want to know the particulars.
* * *
Masons Forgetting All They
Your letter referring to the Correspondence
and in reply I wish to state that the Bulletin plan is good, and I hope
will bring lots of brothers together. Presently I am trying to leave
the city, therefore
I am not in position to take up any Masonic work you speak about, but I
hope I will
be able to do so in the near future. May I ask what is the difference
brother Mason who does not remember a bit of the Lodge work and a
friend who is
not a Mason at all?
Respectfully and fraternally,
Simone, 420 W. 2nd St., near Hill, Los
Not much, truly. But let us not be too critical
the brethren whose interests have in some way become divorced from
of Freemasonry. For example, I well remember one brother who came much
will as a visitor to my lodge. Years ago he had taken the degrees in
Immediately after receiving the third degree he went upon the road as a
of his firm. Since then he had never seen a degree conferred.
Everywhere he was
told that it was a difficult task to pass a lodge examination. Not
of his ground he never cared to undergo the ordeal. Many a time in his
wished that he was posted properly. At times he went home but his trips
very short of stay, and then, too, there were other and usually more
to be handled. In my town he had business with one of the members of my
prevailed upon him to come down and try his best. Some of his story
investigation. He knew enough Masonry for the purpose. An excellent
memory had forgotten
no essentials. With patience, and he was fully entitled to that at the
he convinced the committee of his worthiness. An hour was spent by me
in giving him all the light I could upon various methods of
investigation he might
meet and he was most grateful. But what shall be said of the brethren
who had discouraged
him theretofore? I know you will agree with me that a responsibility
us all to see that Masons are informed. When your location permits,
I trust you will take hold of the work in which you have so evident an
* * *
Further Light for Freemasons
The open letter on the back of the September
THE BUILDER appeals very much to me and as some of my Brethren have
desire to take up the study of Masonry in a systematic manner I wish
you would send
me the list of members in my immediate locality and as much information
formation of a study club as you can.
I am not good at expressing myself, but I wish
that I find a fund of information and "Light" in each issue.
Thanking you for all that you may be able to do
us and wishing you and THE BUILDER continued success, I am,
– A. M.
W.M., Morning Light Lodge, No. 384, Manson, Iowa.
Since the publication of the letter in the
issue I have prepared some additional suggestions for study club
have appeared in the October number of THE BUILDER, and in the November
the Bulletin I have carried further the work. I trust that paper may be
readable character. While only intended to answer a request for light
on a hint
previously given by me on that particular topic, yet it is on a little
region of Masonic research and therefore ought to have no abatement of
because of its pioneering work.
I hope to take up in some detail an orderly
of Freemasonry in due season. These forthcoming papers as I have
planned them will
be of a style straightforward and simple enough to tell the tale
Masonic with truth
and terseness. Do not hesitate to write me whenever I can throw any
upon the path. We are all students. Let us each contribute of his best,
poor that best may be.
* * *
How One Group of Masons
Has Gone To Work
Congratulations on the "Bulletin." I believe
its foundation is laid Masonically. Leadership is essential and when
is executed by those who recognize the value of cooperation and draw
accordingly I feel a thrill of anticipation of Success.
A leader cannot cooperate with himself. Those
to him for leadership must contribute their mite.
In this spirit and with a view of letting you
a little group of students tried to start something, I will try to
convey an account
of our meagre efforts.
Five of the brethren in our village held an
meeting after our last stated communication, which was over at 8:30,
that we could study Masonic subjects to advantage at occasional
The first question considered was "what
phase of Masonic study will be most interesting to us?"
It was decided that each brother state what he
interested in finding out. One brother wanted to know about the
the legend of the third degree. In response to his query various
were quoted and the point brought out, that, as writing about the
had ever been considered unlawful we really had little that was
definite to base
an opinion upon. Attention was also directed to the explanation given
that "Masonry consists of a course of ancient hieroglyphical and moral
taught according to ancient usage, by types, emblems and allegorical
The paper by John A. Thorpe on "Freemasonry,
it came, etc." was read and discussed. I read a paper I had prepared on
is Freemasonry and whence came it" which I carefully explained was only
personal opinion. Another brother wished to know where scriptural
things of interest to Masons were to be found. (See
Correspondence in this issue.)
His request was complied with next day and a
references given him. He promised to prepare a paper on the subject for
of the group.
Another brother wished to know what Masonry was
now. Your scribe answered that his opinion was that it was trying hard
the full import of the answer to the second question of an E.A. on
every Mason and
that improvement in Masonry meant improvement in physical, mental and
A paper by some member or some article of value
decided upon for future meetings and the general discussion which
follows will bring
out many points of interest and send us all to our authorities and
induce us to
search for more light.
I, like many another, am groping around for
definite, but I believe our plan will eventually adjust itself to the
needs of our group.
My personal opinion is that each member of a
should do his full share in contributing something of educational value
a manner as to be of interest.
We all have a tendency to follow lines of study
own; consequently the study of a particular subject at any considerable
probably become burdensome and uncongenial to some.
At the best the study group is but an
to glean the harvest of rich thought derived by the individual effort
of its members.
The individuals will benefit in the forum of
discussion and the group will be cemented by additional ties of
Hoping this has not become tiresome, I am,
Yours in the spirit if not worthy in ability,
H. Shepherd, Hartland, Wis
P. S. – I am only 42. I expect to know more at
P. P. S. – At times when our study group have
definite to work upon I have in view the reading and discussion of the
pamphlets and essays:
"English Lodges before the Grand Lodge Era.” [Lib 1913] (Collected Essays.)
"What is Freemasonry?" [Lib 1893]
"Some of our Ancestors." [Lib*]
from "A Masonic Curriculum" [Lib 1901] by Speth.
"Causes of Divergence in Ritual." [Lib*] (Mass. proceedings, 1915.)
- Ossian Lang’s
"Freemasonry and Mediaeval Craft Gilds." [Lib*] (N. Y. proceedings
- The reprinted
series by the N.M.R.S. [Lib*]
lectures on Symbolism. [Lib*] (Iowa Q. Bulletin, Vol. 3, Nos. 3, 4;
Vol. 4, No.
readings from "Anderson's Book of Constitutions," Preston's
the "Old Charges" and other Masonic classics of value.
Discussion on the articles in THE BUILDER. This
a brief list of the many things of value. I hope someday to add to and
Perhaps you have a much more adequate list.
A splendid start and a most excellent report is
That explanation of what is comprised in the improvement of ourselves
would from my point of view be hard to beat. Nothing more terse and
true could well
be framed. Your list of references for future work is good and fairly
In fact you have some that are as yet strangers to me. So go ahead and
us have further accounts of your progress. I, too, am not yet 52 and
have much to
* * *
Profitable Pointers on Plans
I am interested in Masonic topics and would be
to join a club that is devoted to this field. The Correspondence Circle
should be of great value, not because I place such importance on
methods and systems,
but it may be the means of inducing the proper kind of organizers and
I am under the impression that the organization
administration of a club is a one man job, and that the interest shown
by the members
will be due to his ability as a leader, and his anticipation of their
The set form of study that might be the most
to give to city business men would very possibly not suit a lodge of
of less education. Inspire men that are forceful, popular and
systematic, let them
organize and do 99 per cent of the planning and work and the club may
grow and prosper.
It's a great job for a "Man with a mission,"
as great a field to do good in as any pulpit offers. A well-meaning but
man would make a failure, regardless of the fact that he might be well
on Masonic subjects, and such a failure always makes it harder to
I am fortunate enough to be aware of my own
but there are others in this city, as well as in almost every locality,
excite as much interest in Masonry as many of the preachers do in
The Builder has demonstrated its ability to
collect interested men and I hope the Correspondence Circle will meet
success in starting the "leaders" to action.
Assuring you of such service as is within my
and looking forward to the progress of our desires,
Fred W. Cochran
220 1/2 West Vernon, Los Angeles, Calif.
It is a task to prepare an outline of study
fit all needs or hopes, but we shall not despair if we continue to get
of such thoughtful Masons as yourself. Please go further, won't you,
and tell me
how I can best serve you. What are the topics that in your judgment
get attention? In your intercourse with Masons what have you found to
be most desired
in the way of information? This is a big country, all manner of men
live in it.
My own experience with them must be all too limited. Your help toward
understanding is earnestly invited.
* * *
How a Start in Study Club
Work May be Made
List of members of N.M.R.S. and copies of THE
containing your letter received. The response to my call was not as
large as hoped
for, but this did not deter the few of us that were present from
starting. We thought
best to begin with the tools we had on hand. All present were members
of the N.M.R.S.,
and our Lodge had purchased ten or more copies of Bro J.F. Newton's
Builders," so it was decided to take up the study of this book with the
of the Questions compiled by the Cincinnati Masonic Study School which
on page 128 of No. 6, Vol. 1, of THE BUILDER.
For our first study we took up Questions 1 to
up the answers before our second meeting at which time the questions
the answer given from memory if possible, if not, it was read. If given
it was verified from "The Builders," then each was asked if there was
any discussion of the thought presented. The discussions brought out
many bits of
information and the meeting was voted a success by those present.
For our next meeting, (we meet the 1st, 3rd and
Saturday nights in each month), Questions 15 to 29 will be taken up in
way and so on until we strike a line of thought we want to dig into a
We sent the following letter to those who did
up at our 1st or 2nd meeting:
Sample of Letter Sent to Prospective Members of
Dear Sir and Brother: – Can YOU answer the
- What was
thought to be the shape of the world by the Egyptians in the early ages?
- What is
said of the way the Temples of Egypt were built in early times?
- What are
the real foundations of Masonry?
- Give an
outline of the Egyptian teachings.
- What was
the central theme of the Egyptian faith?
- What is
said of eternity as an ideal of the early Egyptians?
said of the Cube, Square and CROSS?
The answer to these can be found in THE
Bro. Jos. F. Newton. Also they will be taken up and discussed along
others at the 3rd meeting of our Masonic Study Club, Saturday evening,
at my office in Cottingham Bldg. We will be glad to have you with us
become a member or not. Fraternally thine,
Trust that you will pardon such a lengthy
I thought perhaps that our plans would be a help to others who like
at a loss as to what and how to begin to study.
– J. A.
Stiles, Morganfield Lodge No. 66,
F. & A. M., Morganfield, Ky.
Good enough, Bro. Stiles. Fine work, I say. You
done well. Do you find any part of Bro. Newton's book either difficult
or do you note any place on which you or your members seek more light
than is afforded
by the book itself? We all want to make the path easier to travel. In
any way we
can help, please do not fail to bring the matter to our attention
either by letter
to Anamosa or direct to me. Meantime, go forward even as you have
already done so
* * *
What about the Lodge Being
a Study Club?
From East, West and South I am getting letters
convince me that in one respect at least I have failed utterly to make
understood. It is entirely my own fault, too. Here I am emphasizing
Study Club organization
as something beyond the ordinary Lodge routine. I have put so much
weight upon this
plan being carried on outside a tyled Lodge that several correspondents
know why the scheme cannot be handled by the regular Lodge officers and
matter conducted on the Lodge-room floor. Of course it can. I'm
of myself that I failed so absurdly to make that possibility absolutely
Some Lodges already do this successfully.
Lodges have considered that very angle of the situation. The Grand
Master of Utah
said on this point:
"I believe a system
of Masonic instruction and education can be introduced into our Lodges
make the Lodge meetings more attractive and interesting, without
the usual work. A carefully prepared and correct exposition of a
or a division or instalment thereof, approved by competent authority,
read in open
Lodge, and consuming not more than thirty minutes time, occurring say
a year, would, in my opinion, be a useful and valuable addition to our
So it would, Bro. Cherry. Not the slightest
it, in my humble opinion. But is not six times a year too few? Can we
not do better?
It is right here where the difficulty comes in.
of keeping up the interest is to plan for study meetings frequent
enough to maintain
a grip upon the attention of the brethren. At this stage Lodge
facilities are prone
to fall down hard. Take the average City Lodge. How much time is there
to anything outside the "work" and the "business?" When I was
Master I found it almost impossible to handle all the initiations, the
the committees, the funerals, the excursions, the charities, and so
forth, to my
liking without going into the operation of a Study Club Annex or of
lectures. Most Masters of my acquaintance will, I am sure, agree with
Where it can be done I do heartily approve of
of the Lodge for all Masonic instruction that may possibly be given
can be no better place. Granted leisure for the purpose and what could
be more seemly
than the presentation of a suitable essay. An enthusiastic friend once
he relished and cherished the idea that the makeup of a Masonic body
should be such
that it would be no rare thing for great discoveries in science to be
there, that fine artists of the Craft should there each submit their
and that every Lodge ought to be a center radiating the best there is
in the whole
scope of the arts and sciences.
Well, why not?
By The Editor
WHAT a day
was that on which I went to Stratford, to visit a tiny town and a
It was like a dream come true, its soft bright hours like the stanzas
of a poem
in which echoes of unheard music linger. All the way down from London I
the mystery of genius, but found no key to the riddle of it. God
breathes it; beyond
that we cannot go. Dig how you will in the lore of Stratford, no fact,
no hint turns
up to account for a man whose genius is "an intellectual ocean whose
touch every shore." It is a mystery the secret of which no one may
philosopher and friend took pains that I should see everything, and to
Climbing into a cab, we turned away from the town out into the country.
It was like
riding through a park. Hedgerows neatly trimmed, a quaint cottage here
apricots on garden walls, birds singing, and over all the dreamy peace
summer! Where we were going I did not know. Nor did I much care,
wishing that the
ride might be endless amid scenes so lovely – thinking of a boy who
along these ways. After a little we turned a corner and stopped at a
long, low cottage
with a thatched roof and tiny windows, and flowers in the garden.
Then I knew
where we were and why we had come. It was the home of Ann Hathaway,
where the boy
had gone a-courting in the village of Shottery. Near the front door is
a stone where
Dickens once sat musing of that odd romance of long ago, remembering,
how the boy himself had afterwards said that it would be a good thing
if every boy
could be put soundly to sleep at fifteen, and not be allowed to wake up
is twenty-three. Of a truth it would be safer, but think of the fun he
Inside the cottage they show you the old kitchen, with its old
fire-place but little
changed since Will and Ann sat so close together on the seat nearby,
all the sweet nothings that lads and lassies say when life is new and
love is young.
drove to Borden's Hill, a mile or more away, from which lay spread out,
as in a
picture, the town of Stratford, its rows of brick houses, its winding
church-spire, half hidden by trees. It is a scene to haunt the heart
'tis no wonder that memories of it floated into all the plays and poems
of the Bard
of Avon. Nor is it strange that Shakespeare came back to this scene
end, wise enough to know when to quit and wishing to leave the earth
where he had
first learned to love it. Down the Hill we went, our next stop being at
on Henley Street, where the seer was born. Forty thousand people visit
every year, coming from the ends of the earth to pay homage to a great
No one knows
in what room the poet was born, but tradition has consecrated the small
facing the street, on the first floor. Names have been scribbled over
all the walls.
Most of them mean nothing, but one finds those of Thackeray, Keen, and
and in the room above the signatures of Walter Scott and Thomas Carlyle
on the window. No new names are allowed to be added. The back room,
the so-called "Stratford Portrait," now declared by Sidney Lee to have
been painted from a bust in the eighteenth century. Below is the
kitchen, one of
the few rooms that has not been changed since the bard was a boy. Two
rooms to the
right are fitted up as a Museum, and contain early editions of the
and various relics. The Garden, at the back of the house, is filled
with the trees
and flowers mentioned in the plays.
High Street we see the house in which Judith, the daughter of the poet,
thirty-six years. Further on stands the picturesque half-timbered
once the home of Katharine Rodgers, mother of John Harvard – founder of
University. On Chapel Street is the site of New Place, the house in
which the poet
resided when he returned to Stratford, and where he died. Only the
Opposite New Place is the old Guild Hall, where the boy may have seen
strolling players perform; in the upper story of which was the Grammar
he attended. At the end of Church Street we turn into the Old Town road
us to the Trinity Church, almost hidden amid trees on the bank of the
As we entered
the Church, two aeroplanes passed over the town, like huge birds. I
Shakespeare would have said. Be sure that fertile fancy, in which Ariel
birth, would have found a phrase to fit the fact. The Church is
interesting in itself,
and in its treasures of art, but chiefly, of course, for that it is the
the greatest genius of the English race. As Washington Irving said of
it long of
old, "The mind refuses to dwell on anything that is not connected with
His idea pervades the place; the whole pile seems but as his mausoleum.
no longer checked by doubt, here indulge in perfect confidence; other
him may be false or dubious, but here is palpable evidence and absolute
by that Grave on the north side of the chancel, I had such a sense of
of Shakespeare as I never had before. There, only a few feet below me,
lay the actual
dust of the Magician himself – divine dust, because his celestial
spirit lent it
Divinity, revealing all the heights and depths, the tragedy and comedy
of this our
mortal life. Who can pause beside that grave and doubt the triumph of
the soul over
death? How could that creative mind, that busy heart, cease to be? It
Only two other spots on earth have touched me with a like sense of the
immortality: one is Westminster Abbey, and the other is the grave of
Sleepy Hollow. As I read the oft-quoted epitaph with its warning, I
of that wonderful 146th Sonnet, in which he conquered death before he
we forget the Memorial Theatre – that treasure-house of paintings of
and his characters, which is also a library of Shakespearian books.
From the top
of the tower, reached by flights of steps and ladders, one sees another
never to be forgotten. The town, the winding Avon, the summer beauty on
– it is as lovely as a dream. On one side of the theatre was a park,
half full of
men wearing the blue-gray uniform of wounded English soldiers –
reminding us of
the vast tragedy not far away. On the other side stands the Monument,
1888 by Lord Gower – crowned with a giant image of the Poet, surrounded
representing Tragedy, History, Comedy, Philosophy.
we saw the Fountain, the gift of an American in 1887, in honor of the
Shakespeare and the jubilee of Queen Victoria. On our way we met Marie
for an airing – a fat, chubby little lady she is, quite unlike her
with mingled joy and regret, we took the train for London. Always it is
London, as of old all roads led to Rome. Now I know what the poet meant
in his Rhymes
of the Road,
"Go where you may, rest where
Eternal London haunts you still."
that is to say, the science of harmony in space, presides over
everything. We find
it in the arrangement of the scales of a fir-cone, as in the
arrangement of a spider's
living web; we find it in the spiral of a snail shell, in the chaplet
of a spider's
thread, and in the orbit of a planet; it is everywhere, as perfect in
of atoms as in the world of immensities. – Henri Fabre. The Cufic of
The Eternal Religion
I offer this
book to the sight, not of philosophers and wise men of the world, nor
of great theologians
wrapped in endless questionings; but to the simple and untaught, those
to love God rather than to know many things. For not by disputing, but
will He be known, and by loving. – Richard Rolle, 1316.
The Trinity in Color
By Bro. S.W. Williams, P.G.H.P.,
IN the many-sidedness of Masonic study we all
taught much relative to the NUMBER THREE. Volumes have been written in
its mysterious symbolism in its connection with the Religious systems
of past ages.
Its potency today is shown in the TRINITY OF DEITY – the FATHER, SON
and HOLY GHOST
– regarded most sacredly throughout the civilized World.
Let us look at it from a different standpoint.
colors which form the Rainbow when perfect – RED, ORANGE, YELLOW,
GREEN, BLUE, INDIGO
and VIOLET – are constructively evolved from what are known as the
COLORS – RED, YELLOW and BLUE. From these are all the others formed,
WHITE is the
presence of all color, while BLACK is the absence of all LIGHT (which
possible) and hence, is the absence of all color. Each of THE SEVEN has
a symbolic meaning – but these three PRIMARY COLORS, in their symbolic
embrace all that there is in life for Man, from birth to eternity.
Man begins life in the Innocence of Childhood –
by WHITE – the presence of ALL COLOR – because he is "Made in the image
God" and to show his many-sided nature, crowned with an Immortal Soul.
With Manhood, he enters the domain of the first
primary colors – the RED – which signifies all that is strong and
virile in Manhood;
the flush of health and the physical force and power to DO and ACT.
When the strength of Man faileth, he is said to
the sear and yellow leaf" – hence, YELLOW is the symbol of AGE; and,
falleth, like autumn leaves to enrich our mother-Earth" – then it is
enters the realm of the Blue color, which, as it nears Divinity,
its strength, being affected by the glorious whiteness of the Light of
it becomes the Ultra-Violet – the House of the Angels and of those
who have found favor with God.
WHITE denotes PURITY – INNOCENCE – GOD. And
that is born into the Garden of Innocence must pass out therefrom, into
of work and strife, and assume the cares, the responsibilities, and the
Manhood, only to fall in the "Sear and Yellow leaf" and, as a reward of
his efforts, he enters the BLUE Zone – the Spirit-land – from which he
is to pass
once more into the PURE, WHITE LIGHT which emanates from the Throne of
The Circle has been completed, – and a Circlet of White, enclosing a
RED, YELLOW and BLUE, would carry our thoughts through life – into
By Bro. C. M. Schenck. Colorado
THE perversity in attaching through
a wrong significance to signs is illustrated by an anecdote found in
and in several languages, (1) (but repeated as a veritable Scotch
legend by Duncan
Anderson, esq., Principal of the Glasgow Institution for the Deaf and
he visited Washington in 1853.)
King James I. of England, desiring to play a
the Spanish ambassador, a man of great erudition, but who had a
crotchet in his
head upon sign language, informed him that there was a distinguished
that science in the university at Aberdeen. The ambassador set out for
preceded by a letter from the King with instructions to make the best
of him. There
was in the town one Geordy, a butcher, blind of one eye, a fellow of
much wit and
drollery. Geordy is told to play the part of a professor, with the
warning not to
speak a word; is gowned, wigged, and placed in a chair of state, when
is shown in and they are left alone together. Presently the nobleman
came out greatly
pleased with the experiment, claiming that his theory was demonstrated.
"When I entered the room I raised one finger to signify there is one
replied by raising two fingers to signify that this Being rules over
the material and the spiritual. Then I raised three fingers, to say
there are three
persons in the Godhead. He then closed his fingers, evidently to say
are one." After this explanation on the part of the nobleman the
sent for the butcher and asked him what took place in the recitation
room. He appeared
very angry and said: "When the crazy man entered the room where I was
one finger, as much as to say I had but one eye, and I raised two
fingers to signify
that I could see out of my one eye as well as he could out of both of
he raised three fingers, as much as to say there were but three eyes
I doubled up my fist, and if he had not gone out of that room in a
hurry, I would
have knocked him down." (Garrick Mallery in First Annual Report of the
of Ethnology, pages 337-338.)
On record are many stories, related by honest
men, of instances where Masonic signs have been recognized by North
and today some well-informed Masons believe that Masonry was known to
before the coming of the white man, and that it still exists among
them. Of how
easy it is to mistake the meaning of signs the Aberdeen anecdote offers
a good example.
It very often happens that things are not what they seem to be.
One of the believers in Indian Masonry was Dr.
E. Stone, a charter member of Yuba Lodge No. 39, of Marysville,
whom on the evening of February 24, 1909, I visited his lodge. He was
at that time
eighty-two years of age, a Knight Templar, and a 33 degree Hon.
Scottish Rite Mason.
Among other things which he showed me was an
photographs of the charter members of the Lodge. He called attention to
of a man named Heath, whose life he said had been saved through the
of a Masonic sign by hostile Indians. In reply to my question, "How
Indians have gained any knowledge of Masonry?" he replied, "Probably
the early French."
In May, 1910, Brother Stone, who died a few
(December, 1910), repeated to me in a letter the story which he had
told me in the
Lodge room, from which letter I will quote:
Marysville, Cal., May 23, 1910.
Illustrious Sir and Brother: –
In the year 1867 or 8, Bro. James Heath, a
our Lodge, came to me and expressed a desire to join the Chapter of
which I was
an officer, giving as a reason that, a year or two before, he, with a
party of friends,
went on a prospecting trip in the State of Nevada. They had a good
a four-horse covered wagon, and supplies to last for several weeks
Heath was the
driver and was one day left in a beautiful valley while the others went
out to prospect.
About 2 o'clock in the afternoon a band of
finely mounted, appeared on a ridge above the valley, and he saw then
were in hostile
array, and said he hardly knew what to do, but thought if the G.H.S.
do any good, now was the time to try it; so he gave it, and the leader
of the Indians
at once dismounted, stuck a spear he carried, in the ground, and left
came down, took Heath by the hand, led him behind the wagon, and, as he
it, gave him more grips and signs than he knew, and wave him to
his party must leave and return to Virginia City.
The Indians then remained with them a day or
escorted them out of the hostile country, and until they were safely on
and in sight of Virginia City, when the Chief parted with his white
his men with him and were soon out of sight.
Bro. Crandell, who was at the time Grand Sr.
of our Grand Lodge, told me that, in crossing the plains in 1849 with a
of emigrants, he and one other man were the only Masons, although there
families in the company. The Comanches had war parties out, and were
and had stolen stock, and killed several people. Crandell and his
should the Indians make their appearance near them, to try Masonry as a
protection. It was not long before they had an opportunity, as a large
swooping toward them. He and his friend then made themselves known as
and two or three of the Indians responded and their company was never
the journey, and lost no stock; the Indians keeping faith with their
Many years ago I read of a visit made in St.
a delegation of Indian Chiefs, who were on their way to Washington to
Great White Father, as they termed the President of the U. S. In
Indians about the city, they were taken to a Masonic Temple which had
erected. On being taken to the Lodge rooms, which had been decorated
Emblems on the walls and ceiling, they showed by signs and other
they were perfectly familiar with them.
After Bro. James Heath had taken all the
the Chapter, Council and Commandery, he said some more signs were given
him by the
Indian Chief, and I presume the Scottish Rite Degrees, or some of them,
been conferred on the Red Man.
Bros. Heath and Crandell's statements, which I
their oven lips, I have given as nearly in their own words as possible:
a lasting impression on my mind regarding the universality of our
Order, and the
protecting care it insures its members "wheresoever dispersed around
All the Bros. mentioned have passed to the
Lodge above, and I, the Elder Brother, am left to tell their
experiences. All were
old friends of the '49 period, and we "kept watch and ward together
Referring to my visit he wrote: The
you saw used as Altar lights in our Lodge Room, (Yuba Lodge, No. 39,
California, visited Feb. 24, 1909), were taken from a Buddhist Temples
had probably been used for centuries, and were used at the institution
of the first
Masonic Lodge in Japan, under an English Charter, and called Nippon
Lodge No. 1.
Bro. Charles E. DeLong, our Minister to Japan, was present at that
was by that Lodge presented with the candlesticks, he furnishing others
them. Bro. DeLong also presented us the chain armor, spear and banner
of a Japanese
warrior of the older time. The American Flag, which you also saw, was
American Flag to be carried through that Island when Bro. DeLong was
that government to make a trip through their country. The flag-staff is
Bro. Geo. W. Prescott, who visited Jerusalem
Holy Land, presented us with the beautiful Corinthian pillar and the
base of the pillar is marble from the foundation of King Solomon's
Temple; the shaft
is of the Cedar of Lebanon, and the gavels are of olive-wood from the
banks of the
Very truly and affectionately yours,
(Signed) C. E. Stone, 33 degree, Hon.
That Brother Heath thought the Indians
sign, and that they were Masons, there can be no question. As to
whether his conclusion
was correct there is room for doubt.
In Col. Garrick Mallery's paper on "Sign
Among North American Indians," [Lib*] previously mentioned, on page 530
335) is a picture of an Indian giving a sign which is at least
suggestive of the
one used by Brother Heath. The accompanying text explains that it is
the sign for
"Peace; Friendship," made by elevating the hands at arm’s length above
and on either side of the head. Observed by Dr. W. J. Hoffman, as made
Arizona in 1871 by Apaches, Mojaves, Hualpais, and Seviches."
This being so, is it not perhaps probable that
given by Brother Heath was interpreted by the Indians to mean "Peace;
If the friendly relations established through the medium of the sign,
by a good feed and other entertainment, it is easy to account for the
with the party for a day or two and then escorting it safely out of the
country. You will remember that Brother Heath narrated that the Indian
him behind the wagon and gave him more grips and signs than he knew,"
in later years the Indian Chief gave him some more signs, and he
presumed that "the
Scottish Rite Degrees, or some of them, might have been conferred on
the Red Man."
Of this it may be said that there are but few Masonic signs which are
although with an entirely different meaning, in the sign language of
Illustrations of several such signs are given
Mallery's paper above referred to. Note particularly Fig. 290 on page
293, page 471; Fig. 309, page 487; and Fig. 336, page 531.
In "The New Age" for September, 1910, (pages
244 and 245) in his article on "The Legend of Masonry Among the Osage
Frederick S. Barde says:
"A Scottish Rite
Mason who has lived long in Oklahoma was asked if he believed the
Osages knew anything
of Masonry. He replied instantly that he did, and told of having
signs used by an Osage who had shown curiosity in examining a Masonic
Osage could not speak English and talked through an interpreter. This
Mason had no familiar acquaintance with the Osages, and admitted that
was based largely on surmise, as he did not attempt to hold Masonic
with the Indian. The observation and belief of this Mason is common to
A Mason ignorant of Osage customs and speech, watching attentively a
of Osages, and departing without inquiry, might be convinced beyond the
doubt that these Indians know something of Masonry.
"All North American
Indians have an inter-tribal means of communication, known as the sign
It is so graphic and comprehensive that two Indians, wholly unable to
each other orally, may converse easily and with certainty in this
language. In it
are two signs that correspond without appreciable difference to two of
important signs of Masonry, both in the degree of Master Mason.
Remarkable as it
may be, the meaning of these Indian signs is practically the same as
counterparts, one being concrete and the other more or less abstract
for the Osage legend, or its extension to other Indian tribes, a more
and misleading statement could hardly be made than to say that the
Osages have even
the slightest knowledge of Masonic secrets. From the Indian standpoint,
one of these
signs has a clear origin in a custom peculiar to a powerful tribe when
the origin of the other, speculatively at least, may be traced to a
of this conclusion is upheld by Masons of inquiring minds who have
lived for more
than a quarter of a century among the Osages, speaking fluently both
the sign language
and the Osage tongue, and who are acquainted with the legend of Osage
declare that they never found the least evidence of Masonry among the
believe firmly that the legend has no stronger foundation than the
between the two Indian and the two Masonic signs."
What the two signs were, I have taken some
find out, but am still uninformed.
In his book entitled "Indian Masonry," [Lib
C. Wright addresses his Preface "To the Brethren of the Craft," and
"This work is
fraternally dedicated to you. In your kindly charge it is placed,
hoping that when
it has been measured by the plumb, square and level, it will be found
true work, square work, and just such work as you need and may pass to
be used in
the building up of the real Masonic structure."
Here are a few extracts from the book:
"Some time ago
a brother said one day that he had seen Indians give Masonic signs, and
doubted in spite of the brother's earnestness, an investigation was
"I have had Masons
solemnly tell me that they had seen Masonic signs given by Indians and
were Masons. This can be explained in two ways: first, the Indian had
a Mason or had learned the signs secretly from white men as Negroes of
had done – second, those brethren had taken as Masonic, signs made by
for which he intended an entirely different meaning. There is great
the civilized understanding is mistaken or forced, and errors are more
happen from the hearsay of traders, interpreters and agents, who have
made an Indian
jargon, and insist that signs of their own making, adopted by the
Indians, are universal."
"Signs are very
liable to be misunderstood; yet some of them have a startling likeness
Masonic symbols." (p. 16)
"There is no Indian
Masonry. There is Indian Masonry. This wide difference I make clear
when I say,
no Indian Masonry as the average man understands it, but there is a
Masonry for him who seeks to find it." (p. 108)
"There is no Indian
Masonry in that small and narrow sense which most of us think of; that
is, one who
pays lodge dues, wears an apron like ours and gives signs so nearly
like ours that
we find him perforce a Mason in any degree or degrees we know, and
we are too prone to watch, just as we do a procession of historical
casually interest us, and maybe a little more so if we can but secure a
the head of the procession, the true meaning of which we have but a
faint idea about.
This makes our own Masonry as meaningless as the interpretation of
by an ignorant trapper." (p. 109)
Dr. Walter Rough. a Mason and an anthropologist
for twenty-seven years has been associated with the Smithsonian
Institute, is reported
to have expressed himself in so far as Masonry among the Hopi Indians
as told in the following extract from a newspaper article:
"A Blue Lodge
Mason entered one of the Hopi lodges. He came out thunderstruck. "I
where he got it," said the Blue Lodge man, "but that Indian buck in
knows as much Masonry as I do." Which is a lovely fable which helps to
guides rich. According to Dr. Hough, there aren't any Hebrew words or
to be found in Hopi Pueblos. The resemblance is undeniable, but there
is no common
meaning or common origin." (Herbert Corey, in Denver Times of Oct. 1,
Brother Newton R. Parvin of the Masonic Library
Rapids, Iowa, and Grand Secretary of Iowa, has kindly furnished me with
a list embracing
thirteen books and magazine articles relating to Indian Masonry, which
I shall be
pleased to pass on to any of you who wish to delve deeper.
In so far as a settlement of the question
was, or is now, any Masonry as we know it, known to uncivilized North
I will leave it as Stockton did in "The Lady, or the Tiger." You will
remember that at the end of the story he told us:
"The question of her decision is not to be
considered, and it is not for me to presume to set myself up as the one
to answer it. And so I leave it all with you: Which came out of the
open door, the
lady or the tiger?"
introduction and the version which I shall give you is taken from
Col. Garrick Mallery's paper on "Sign Language Among North American
printed in the First Annual Report of the Bureau of Ethnology (1879-80.)
LIST FURNISHED BY BROTHER PARVIN
Sept. 23, 1913
- Barde, F.S., Legend of Masonry Among the Osage
Indians. New Age, V. 13; pp. 242, 245.
- Bromwell, H. P. H., Masonry Among the American
Indians. American Tyler, V. 5; p. 10.
- Freemasonry Among the Indians. New England
V. 4; p. 90.
- Indian Masonry. American Tyler, V. 16; p. 160
- Masonry Among the American Indians. Evergreen,
V. 3; p. 3.
- New Kind of Masonry. American Tyler, V. 15; p.
- Newell, C., Masonry of the Red Man. Tyler
V. 21; pp. 113, 146, 168, 192, 194.
- A Possible Relic of Indian Masonry. American
Tyler, V. 7; p. 336.
- Some Unrecognized Masonry. American Tyler, V.
18 ; p. 404.
- Welles, T.F., Freemasonry Among the Indians.
Trestle Board, San Francisco, V. 9; p. 31.
- Welsh, Indian Freemasonry. Trestle Board, San
Francisco, V. 2; p. 178.
- Wright, Robert C., Is there Masonry Among the
Indians? Tyler Keystone, V. 20; p. 523. V. 21; pp. 8, 28.
Robert C., Indian Masonry. [Lib 1907]
The Two Ashlars
By Bro. F.C. Higgins, New
Our lodge is in every respect a symbolic
with all the tools belonging to the different grades of workmen, and
with a trestleboard
upon which are set forth the day's designs and the material upon which
of the brethren is to be expended.
This symbolic material consists of the two
emblematic of the crude material and the finished product, which are
enough on view in New York lodges, but absent or almost unknown except
in many other states. The oblong stones and nondescript slabs sometimes
noteworthy evidence that the age-old significance of the "cubical
which has played such a prominent role in the mythology and mysticism
of the past,
has almost run to oblivion in the modern craft. These stones should
really be perfect
cubes. The symbolism of the working tools is completely lost the moment
are lost sight of or ignored. The ancient Hebrews had their own version
of the great
"number philosophy," which lent sanctity and expressiveness to the
12. First of all, it was the number of their Twelve Tribes, who were
symbolical enrolment of all the heads of families under the zodiacal
sign of the
month in which they were born. It is certainly significant that the
system was founded upon this number, and later on many other
dispositions were made
that showed a particular reverence for the Chaldean plan of the
universe based upon
12 signs. As one cube possesses six sides each of which is a perfect
square, a number
of remarkable mathematical and geometrical symbolisms were established
the fact that all the numbers, from one to 12 added together produce
78. This number
is also the sum of 3 times "26," the numerical value of the "Great
and Sacred Name of Jehovah" (JHVH).
As each cube possesses 12 edges, the combined
require a 24-inch rule to symbolize their total outline. The breaking
mathematical combinations of this supreme number, each significant of
some one of
the great ruling phenomena of nature, was seen in the symbolism of the
use of an
operative Mason's gavel in the dressing of building stones.
The grand old mystery name of our Creator,
Tetragrammaton (Greek for "four-letter name") had as its root the three
letters J, H, and V, which as numbers were 10, 5, and 6, or 21, the sum
of the added
numbers 1 to 6 represented by a single cube.
This fact was made the basis of a curious
by the wise old rabbis into that marvelous compilation called the
Talmud, from which
more than a little of our Masonic material has been derived.
The story is of the Patriarch Enoch (Hanok,
whose name means "the initiator," 10, all accounts agree, lived 365
or a "year of years." A remarkable book attributed to him is often
to by the Hebrew commentators and early Christian "Fathers"; but no
of it was ever found until in the last century it turned up in
Abyssinia. It has
been translated out of that strange African dialect into many tongues.
Book of Enoch [Lib 1893] contains
a remarkable recital of astronomical science as known to the ancients,
in allegorical form, while the history of the Children of Israel is
under the allegorical simile of the remarkable doings of a singularly
flock of sheep which build a house for their shepherd, the whole
reading very much
like a children's fairy tale.
The Talmudic legend of Enoch represents him as
disturbed at the news of the impending world Deluge," for fear the Name
God should be lost. He accordingly caused it to be inscribed upon a
of gold, and affixed it to a cubical stone, for the safe keeping of
which he caused
a series of nine arched vaults to be constructed, one beneath another,
at the foot
of Mt. Moriah (the holy mountain of the Jews, as Mt. Meru was of the
rains came and the flood descended, and so washed the mud and silt over
that it became completely obliterated.
Centuries later, when King David was moved "to
build an house unto the Lord," and actually set his workmen to dig the
thereof, the latter discovered the vaults, and descending therein
brought to light
the long-buried stone.
Tradition also has it that the material of this
was agate, which would at once connect it with the Hermetic philosophy;
above all, was sacred to Hermes and Thoth or David. The latter, having
been a warlike
monarch, was not permitted to achieve that which he had begun and so
the cubical stone to his son Solomon, who made use of it as the
cornerstone of the
The imagery of this is plain enough in the fact
not in a written or engraved inscription, but in the mathematical
the cube itself, was to be found that wonderful Name which is, as it
were, the foundation
of the universe, of which man is a fleshly epitome and the Temple on
a symbolic one.
By knowing the use of the working tools of an
the initiate might begin his labor of hewing and shaping the brute
matter at his
feet into stones fit for the builders' use; but when he had
accomplished his task
he was apprised that the symmetry and order it represented in its
was "God": not a god whom he created, but a God whom his patient labor
The cube itself was an age-old symbol of the
Man, as set forth in the Mahabarata of ancient India: A portion of Mine
transformed in the world of life into an immortal Spirit, draweth round
senses of which the Mind, is the Sixth, veiled in Matter.
Therefore we find the cube present in all the
mythologies, which were but racial cloaks for one and the same wisdom
understood by the priests of all countries alike as a symbol of the
sixth sign of
the zodiac, the characters portraying the great Mother of Wisdom and
It is the task of the apprentice to break
shell of matter and liberate the Divine Word that dwells within by
opening his own
spiritual perceptions to the light of the Logos. As the priceless
statues of Phidias
and Praxiteles were once shapeless masses of unmeaning stone and the
sea-worn crag, until gavel and gage, mallet and chisel, in the hand of
had performed their tasks, so has always been the lesson of the cube in
and shapen forms to the apprentice Mason.
Maundy Thursday – A Toast
By Bro. M.F. Funkhouser,
The chief claim of an Institution to some is
of its Antiquity; to such the genealogical record of Masonry should be
That it should antedate the Christian Era ought certainly to satisfy
the most exacting
enthusiast, but there are those who insist on even a more remote origin
never tire of tracing its ramifications through the labyrinths of the
of India, Egypt and Greece, and exultingly picture it in detail,
through all the vicissitudes and mutations of human affairs, outlasting
and havoc of dynasties, the disruption of Empires, the downfall and
rise of Republics,
witnessing in successive ages the atrocities and death of tyrants and
the self-sacrifice, devotion and triumph of patriots.
How shall we gauge and measure the merit of
Institution, with a foundation so broad and deep and firm that it has
perpetuated, though ever feared and frowned upon by ignorance and
threatened by bigotry and assailed by intolerance. The jealous hate of
attacked it with fire and sword and its followers have been proscribed,
reviled, loaded with chains, thrown into dungeons and even burned at
the stake –
martyrs to a spiritual despotism which made Reason and Free Thought
of discipline and severe punishment, instead of a patient hearing and
A sacred trust is attached to this rich
which we have received from our progenitors. A personal responsibility
us for the preservation of the principles of civil and religious
liberty – Liberty,
Equality, Fraternity, Free Speech, Free Thought, Free Conscience, Free
Free schools should be as dear to us as they were to our departed dead.
should be ready and willing to shed our blood, yea even give up our
lives, in order
that these sacred, God given rights and principles should continue to
expand, and be a force and power for good, and that the permanency of
should be established forever in this land of freedom and opportunity,
air is full of sunlight and the flag is full of stars. Religion,
morality and knowledge
are necessary to make men happy and respectable, under any form of
as has been well said, is more than an institution, more than a
than a society. In truth, it is one of the forms of the Divine life
of no age, it belongs to all time; of no religion, it finds great
truths in all.
It has touched with grace and beauty the tender virtues of mercy and
blessings have been felt in every nation, language and creed, and from
constantly arise the incense of a prayerful life. It has always stood
equality and fraternity. It has instituted no inquisitions, lighted no
persecution, and antagonized no religion. It stands for the purity of
and the sanctity of the home. As the citizen is the unit of the state,
is the unit of civilization and woman is its Queen. All the higher
the race are in her keeping and the honor and chivalry of Masonry are
The essence of Masonry is character, its goal,
manhood and its mission is "to teach men to know and practice their
to themselves and their fellows." (This is the practical end of all
and knowledge.) Its message is the dissemination of moral, political,
and religious truth, and that honor and duty are the beacon lights to
vessel over the stormy seas of time.
It has a history, a literature and a
also has a creed, the Fatherhood of God, the Brotherhood of Man and the
of the Soul. Born almost in the very cradle of the race, the antique
Masonry are vessels which have come down to us full freighted with the
riches of the past. In the lading of these argosies are the best from
of every age and contain much to prove its claim to be acknowledged as
When men begin to reflect, they begin to
great problem then is to find guides who will not seek to become
tyrants. In Masonry
with its faith in man, hope for the future of humanity and loving
kindness for its
fellows is found a guide who ever endeavors to be beneficent,
unambitious and disinterested.
The onward march of the human race requires
heights about it should blaze with noble and enduring lessons of
courage, in which
the hope of success and not the expectation of reward, should be the
and sustaining power. Life's length, my brethren, is not measured by
its hours and
days, but by that which has been done therein for our Country and
One of the most marvelous, wonderful,
convincing reasons for Masonic perpetuity, is that it is the only
the world around whose altars the Christian, the Hebrew, the Moslem,
and the follower of every creed (excepting only "that orphan, that waif
the midnight streets of time, homeless and alone," – the Atheist) may
of perfect equality, assume our sacred obligations and as brethren
unite in prayers
to the One God, who is above all others, leaving each of its initiates
to look for
the foundation of his faith and hope in the written scriptures of his
The Sages of all the Ancient Races have ever
necessity, a secret and Holy doctrine, which was not made known to the
large, – when the stars were worshipped, the Initiates adored that
itself as a star. When Fire and Light were objects of adoration by the
the Adepts worshipped the Invisible Principle from which the Light
To Masonry, as to other Institutions, there
intervals, crises when it was deemed expedient and necessary to create
– a circle within a circle – to whose members alone the chief secrets
could be entrusted.
At such times infinite care was taken, while seeming to make the whole
all, to conceal what was necessary by symbols and even trivial
led away from the truth, instead of toward it.
The Inner circle of the Scottish Rite, modified
the modern conditions and requirements, is our Supreme Council of the
the Governing Body of Our Order to whom we all owe and willingly give
and from whom we derive our authority to assist in propagating as the
of Citizenship, an unselfish Patriotism, "that spirit of liberty which
the voices of despots, turns blind submission into rational obedience,
the mists of superstition, kindles the flame of Art and pours happiness
laps of the people."
The Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite, as now
came into being in 1786 when the Grand Constitutions, which have
governed the Rite
since that date, were adopted. The number of degrees were increased to
the addition of a governing degree, the 33rd.
This Rite was in existence in France and other
in Europe prior to 1762 and known as the "Rite of Perfection or
It was then composed of three degrees of the York Rite and twenty two
18th being the Rose Croix, and the 25th the "prince of the Royal
Scottish Masonry was introduced into America by
Morin, who held a patent from this Rite of Perfection or Heredom,
Orient of Paris,
of the date of August 27th, 1761. His title was "Grand Master
Besides the power to establish a symbolic lodge in America, the Grand
him to confer the higher degrees, giving him the rank of Inspector over
bodies of these degrees, with power of substitution, and to create
in all places where the sublime degrees were not established. He
confined his labors
exclusively to the Scottish Rite and successive Deputy Inspectors were
him, who in turn granted patents to other individuals.
In April, 1795, John Mitchell was raised to the
degree in Masonry and created Deputy Grand Inspector General. On May
Inspector General Mitchell granted equal honors and a similar patent to
Dalcho, a physician of Charleston, S. C., and also an officer in the
Army. Six days later, on May 31st, 1801, there was organized at
Carolina, with Col. John Mitchell as the First Sovereign Grand
Commander, and Dr.
Frederick Dalcho as Lieutenant Commander, a Supreme Council of the 33rd
United States of America, which on December 4th, 1802, issued a
the Grand Constitutions of 1786 as the law of its existence and source
stating that the same had been ratified by Frederick the Great, King of
and Grand Commander and who had delegated to this First Supreme
Council, all the
Masonic prerogatives which his Majesty himself possessed.
To America alone the privilege was given for
of two Supreme Councils, while to every other Country in Europe, but
one was permissible.
There are scattered over the world, in existence and in harmony with
our own, twenty-nine
regular Supreme Councils, every one of which has, mediately or
from our own Mother Council of the World, the limits of whose
thirty states and all the territories, organized and unorganized. This
the Phillipines, Hawaii, Porto Rico, and the Oriental Empire of Japan,
through our doors can the Army and Navy gain admission into the ranks
Rite Masonry. A patent issued by this Body is a sure passport to the
of Scottish Rite Masons and commands their respect in all lands and
among all peoples.
The Northern Supreme Council was established in
1813, and their jurisdiction is limited to fifteen states of the Union,
these are included the most populous and thickly settled. A thorough
exists between the two Supreme Councils and they work together, without
or jealousy. Since the organization of our Supreme Council, nearly 115
"the record of those who have been crowned active members is one to
can point with just pride, not only because of their general high
good judgment and discretion displayed and good works done, but also
the unique fact that not one ever has brought reproach on the Order –
is as bright and untarnished as when they first entered on the scene,"
again the truth of the sentiment that the "noblest monuments that mark
progress of Mankind are not confined to those of marble, stone, and
brass, but rather
deeds of men."
With such an Institution to inspire enthusiasm
such an Ancestry to arouse and stimulate, with such leaders to counsel
with such companions to encourage and assist; if we but earnestly
endeavor to do
our part of constantly diffusing our messages of wisdom and
philanthropy, of philosophy
and toleration; of voicing ever an appreciation of the dignity and
labor; of disseminating, with discrimination, the doctrines containing
truths for every department of life; belief in the existence of God,
of Man, the Immortality of the Soul, – insisting on and living up to a
as loyal as is obedience to the law is unswerving; then we can rest
our Grand and Noble Order, clothed in majesty and power, shall continue
down the great highways of History, – marching at the head of the
the World's events, the foremost exponent, teaching by example of
Christianized freedom, its manifest destiny to light the torch of
liberty till it
illumines the entire pathway of the World, till human freedom and human
the common heritage of mankind. For in the language of our late Grand
"the cause of human progress is our cause, the enfranchisement of human
is our supreme wish; the freedom of human conscience, our mission; and
of equal rights to all peoples everywhere, – the end of our Contention."
The Wisdom of Waite
The keynote of creation is modesty, and its
that of concealment.
There are depths of the universe which give up
forms, as the sea gives up monsters.
The light of the true world is darkness unto
The universe exists for its intelligences; and
– in so far as he can use it.
Morality is not the end of life, but rather its
Covetousness is a cardinal virtue when it is
to imperishable things.
The secret of eternal life is that of love, and
secret of love is to live in the lives of others, with and for them.
All great books are sacraments, but all readers
Human life is the story of a great secret, but
slowly unravelling the plot.
A. E. Waite.
Steps to the Crown.
"Peace on Earth"
LONG ago, over the armed camp of the hard old
world, the Angels sang their prophetic hymn, proclaiming "peace on
men of good will." How far off it must have seemed in that day, like a
echo of the bells of the City of God; how far off it seems today, when
is red with war and a pall of woe hangs over the race. The world is
still in twilight;
and from beyond dim horizons comes ceaselessly the thunder of great
guns. A hard
frostlike surface of gaiety sparkles in our cities; and anxiety turns
or to apathy for relief. After all the ages, the hope of peace on earth
vain as all the vain things proclaimed of Solomon.
Nevertheless, the song of the Angels will come
It is not a myth. It is not a mockery. Surviving ages of slaughter, of
wild injustice, it returns to haunt us, foretelling a better tomorrow,
this last defeat its immortality. Because that music is so far off we
it is not our own, but was sent into the soul of man by a Power as far
our discordant noises as the stars are above the mist. It means much
that we can
hear it, despite the mad hell of the hour, and if we cease to love it
confounded will come again, making the Dark Ages eternal. If the time
delayed, we must lay it to heart that the vision will come true as fast
as the world
fills up with Men of Goodwill – and no faster.
Finally, out of the welter of war, with its
fire and tears, its measureless misery and woe, its hideous nightmare
and brutality, its unspeakable cruelty, its slavery of hate, its orgy
of lust, its
senseless worship of Force; slowly, surely, sadly, after ages of
tragedy are past,
"We shall come,
not blindly impelled, but free
To an orbit of order at last,
And a finer peace shall be wrought out of pain
Than the stars in their courses know;
Ah, me! but my soul is in sorrow till then,
And the feet of the years move slow."
* * *
A National Masonic Conference
How can we best celebrate the founding of the
Grand Lodge of England, in June, 1917? Looking forward to that day,
to give a new date to the history of Freemasonry, we venture to suggest
Masonic Conference; not a legislative assembly, but a Feast of
a Festival of joy and wisdom in which to renew our vows, to cement our
and to lay far-reaching plans for the better use of Masonry in behalf
of all that
makes for private nobility and social welfare. Such an assembly,
meeting in some
central city easily accessible – Indianapolis, for example –
part of the country, and every rite and rank of the Order; presided
over by that
noble and distinguished Mason who for thirty years has been the Grand
Maryland; with a program carefully prepared, covering the questions of
interest, and bringing together the best intellects of the Craft at
home and abroad
– such an assembly, we say, would give an impetus to Masonry that would
for years to come.
Surely, if Masonry means anything at all,
ought to be able to meet on St. John's Day without jealousy and without
celebrating the greatest event in the story of modern Masonry, and
and means whereby to make the spirit of Masonry more effective. Indeed,
suggestion of the possibility of misunderstanding or objection shows
how much such
a Conference is needed, and how much it may do, equally for a better
of inter-jurisdictional differences and for the promotion of a closer
a more concerted action, and the mobilizing of the influence of Masonry
common good. An unofficial, voluntary Conference, drawn together by the
need of the Fraternity, in memory of a great event, planning for a
if not why not? What valid or wise objection can be urged against it?
the deliberation of such an assembly report the best thought and
of the Order, and mean an advance of Masonry everywhere? We shall be
very glad to
hear from our Members in regard to this proposal which seems to us to
* * *
Grand Lodge of England
Our readers will recall that we wrote last
the action of the mother Grand Lodge in suspending from Masonic
of German birth during the period of the war. At a distance it looked
as if the
Grand Lodge had permitted political issues to invade its sanctuary in
of its own Constitution, and we confess that it dismayed us. However,
as so often
happens, when all the facts are know it is the other way round. The
fact that did
not get into the record, and seemed not to have been mentioned in the
was that German Brethren insisted upon bringing up the issues of the
war in Lodge
meetings. So much so that it became difficult, in some places, to hold
a Lodge meeting
in peace – for English Brethren were in no mood to debate such issues,
in Lodge. Things came to such a state that Grand Lodge was appealed to
and it passed the resolution referred to. No doubt there were Brethren
birth who had no inclination to inject such questions into their
and who suffered hurt by the law. Perhaps another and better way might
devised, but our point is that the Grand Lodge was intent on keeping
all such issues
out of the Lodge room, not bringing them in. After visiting England,
the situation, we feel that Masons everywhere never had more reason to
of the mother Grand Lodge than during the last two dreadful years. Its
its patience, its loyalty to its own great principles were worthy of
its great tradition;
the more so, remembering the fact that the Grand Lodge of Teutonic
relations with their Brethren in enemy lands at once and out right. So
much in view
of the fact, and for the sake of making the fact clear.
* * *
Masonry is moral idealism, by which is meant no
and filmy dream, but a life-like portrait seen in advance of what men
should be. Ideals, so far from being mere visions, are the most
reached by means of the most painstaking calculation. It stands much in
that they come not from the brains of the evil, but from the intellects
greatest. The greatest minds of each age have pleaded for Liberty
because only the
great minds can paint in advance the portrait of a free people. Many
now in the mire, lacking mind great enough to grasp a lofty ideal.
Instead of being
a mere romance, an ideal is the long mathematical calculation of a mind
as Euclid. Idealism is not the musings of a visionary; it is the calm
* * *
A New Year Prayer
O Thou Ancient of Days, whose years are
generations, how frail we are in a world that was before we were born;
in a world that will last when we are gone. Nevertheless we are Thine,
being by Thy loving kindness for some purpose beyond our fathoming, and
not forsake the work of Thy hands. Therefore we who live in the House
of Time lift
up our prayer for light and love and life eternal, seeking to know Thee
we are and what we have in us of the true and everlasting. Waken us to
hear in the
depths of our own souls Thy voice of gentle stillness telling us that
life has immortal meanings.
Increase our faith as Thou dost increase our
that the longer we live on the earth the nobler may our service be, the
our obedience, the more complete our devotion to Thy will. Grant us to
tomorrow because of the failures of today; more trustful in the future
of the doubts that haunted us in the past; more forgiving because we so
to be forgiven. Quicken our dull hearts to a more lively hope in Thy
to us whatever may befall of trial or of danger; and grant us to love
much, to love
all, and most of all to love Thee, our Father and Redeemer.
Mercifully hast Thou brought us to the end of
year, though many who were better than we have fallen into the great
– many of whom we knew and loved. O let us not miss what might be done
gift of a new year for the service and blessing of our fellows; let us
of the beautiful thing that might be made of it. Stir up the gift that
is in us;
make us wise with insight from on high to discern clearly, to endeavor
to endure heroically. If we fail much, may we at least learn humility
and so have a heart of pity and of hope for others who have failed.
Forgive our misspent days, and help us to begin
year with a new heart, a new hope, a new courage, and, if it may be,
live more nobly,
more faithfully, more kindly, more patiently, touched with a higher and
And when the thread of our years is broken, when days and works are
done, and the
house of our dwelling is dissolved in death, O receive us by Thy mercy
Home of the Soul, in His name. Amen.
J. F. N.
A Prayer in Time of War -- [A Poem]
Alfred Noyes. London Daily Mail
war will change
many things in art and life, and among them, it is to be hoped, many of
ideas as to what is, and what is not "intellectual.")
whose deep ways
are in the sea,
Whose footsteps are not known,
To-night a world that turned from Thee
Is waiting – at Thy throne.
The towering Babels that we raised
Where scoffing sophists brawl,
The little antichrists we praised –
The night is on them all.
The fool hath said – The fool hath said –
And we who deemed him wise,
We who believed that Thou wast dead,
How should we seek Thine eyes?
How should we seek to Thee for power
Who scorned Thee yesterday?
How should we kneel, in this dread hour?
Lord, teach us how to pray!
Grant us the single heart, once more,
That mocks no sacred thing,
The Sword of Truth our fathers wore
When Thou wast Lord and King.
Let darkness unto darkness tell
Our deep unspoken prayer,
For, while our souls in darkness dwell,
We know that Thou art there.
The Mission of Masonry
Masonry also has her mission to perform. With
reaching back to the earliest times, and her symbols dating further
back than even
the monumental history of Egypt extends, she invites all men of all
enlist under her banner and to war against evil, ignorance and wrong.
IT is said that no Englishman understands
and that most of them are proud of their ignorance. However that may
be, Lord Charnwood
is an exception, as may be seen from his new "Life of Lincoln," [Lib 1917] which is the best
biography of our prophet-President so far written in England. Joining a
insight to a singularly lucid style, he portrays the background against
tragedy of our Civil War must be studied; showing how far back the
roots of schism
ran in our history. This gives him opportunity to characterize the
of the Republic, an art in which he is an adept, albeit we may not
with his estimates – as, for example, his too severe drawing of
less can we subscribe to his rather low, if not biased, opinion of our
Of Hamilton, whom Talleyrand ranked with
has a very high estimate; and Burr he describes as "an elegant
with many graces but no public principle," – to which all would say
to the great debate that led up to the war, Lord Charnwood tells us
must have been "nearly a great man; he was always passed over for the
Calhoun he regards as the "embodied intellect of his time," but, alas,
a man "who is undisturbed in his logical processes by good sense,
or any vigorous appetite for truth," – again a too austere verdict. He
the Wolseley estimate of Lee, as a man of majestic presence, of sweet
nature; "one of the few men who ever impressed me with their natural,
inherent greatness." So we might go on through a long list, accepting
one picture after another, each one etched with deftness and skill.
The great subject of the book is, of course,
and barring a few minor errors as to his early life, it is a noble
with sympathy, insight, and warm appreciation, without idealization and
eulogy. Lincoln is presented to us as a real man, humble, modest,
tender of heart,
holding no bitterness, no hate, resisting the matchless generalship of
Lee on one
side, and on the other dealing with the rankest incompetency of
Grant came to the rescue; struggling against adverse and
counter-currents of feeling
and events, lied about, defamed, ridiculed by men not worthy to touch
– it is a great story, by whomsoever told, and here it is recited in a
of its nobility. If the reader will join with this biography the volume
Recollections of Lincoln," by Rankin, which ye editor edited last year,
will have an unforgettable picture of the man whom Lowell called "the
* * *
So many Brethren have asked about brief
to philosophy, that we venture to call attention to one entitled
into Philosophy," [Lib 1914] by Emile
Faguet, of the French Academy, as one of the best of its kind. It is
written for the beginner, and is designed to satisfy the initial
curiosity of young
men as to what philosophy is, what it has to tell us about life, and
what its uses
are. As such, it is written in a very lucid and happy style, giving a
of the history of philosophy from the time of Thales down to the last
as far as possible technical language; giving the keynote of each
school of thought,
and the main lines followed by each great thinker. "Initiation into
[Lib 1914] by the same author,
does the same service for the rich and picturesque field of poetry,
story and drama.
* * *
The Green Mansions
One of the greatest living writers – now that
is gone – is W.H. Hudson, albeit he is not widely known. Poet,
magician, as a stylist he has few, if any, living equals. As a prophet
of the great
out-of-doors there is not another like him. Such stories as "The Green
[Lib 1916] and the "Purple
Land" [Lib 1904] are books
to read more than once, if one wishes to come very close to Mother
nature in whose
soft arms all must sleep at last. In proof of the spirit as well as the
art of man,
"The blue sky,
the brown soil beneath, the grass, the trees, the animals, the wind,
the rain, the
stars are never strange to me; for I am in and of and one with them;
and my flesh
and the soil are one, and the heat in my blood and in the sunshine are
the winds and the tempests and my passions are one. I feel the
with regard to my fellow men, especially in towns, where they exist in
unnatural to me, but congenial to them. In such moments we sometimes
with, and are strangely drawn to the dead, who were not as these; the
dead, the men who knew not life in towns, and felt no strangeness in
sun and wind
* * *
Grand Lodge Library
The book to which we referred some time ago,
of the Grand Lodge of England," [Lib*] by Brother Dr. Hammond, is well
its way to completion, and will itself be a treasure, as we can testify
examined some of the plates that are to go into it. There will be
twelve pages of
color illustrations, thirty-two pages of black and white plates, and a
of descriptive matter by Dr. Hammond, the Librarian. There will be two
one expensive and highly finished, and the other more popular – the
not been announced. It will no doubt find its way into Lodge libraries
the land, as a kind of keepsake in celebration of the founding of the
* * *
Green Mansions, [Lib 1916] by Hudson. Alfred A. Knopf Co.,
New York. $1.50.
into Philosophy, [Lib 1914] by Faguet. G. P. Putnams Sons,
New York. $1.25.
About Trench, [Lib 1916] by Lewis. Macmillan Co., New
New World, [Lib 1915] by Hugh Black. Revell Co., New
What is it? [Lib 1914] by Jevons. G. P. Putnams Sons,
New York. $1.00.
Instructor, [Lib*] by Rabbi Eno Ytneves. Publisher not named
of the Infinite Mystery, [Lib 1916] by Gordon. Houghton, Mifflin
Co., Boston. $1.50.
"Give Us Men" -- [A Poem]
By The Bishop of Exeter
Men from every rank,
Fresh and free and frank;
Men of thought and reading,
Men of light and leading,
Men of loyal breeding,
The nation's welfare speeding;
Men of faith and not of fiction.
Men of lofty aim in action;
Give us Men – I say again,
Give us Men!
Give us Men!
Strong and Stalwart ones;
Men whom highest hope inspires,
Men whom purest honor fires,
Men who trample self beneath them,
Men who make their country wreath them
As her noble sons,
Worthy of their sires!
Men who never shame their mothers,
Men who never fail their brothers,
True, however false are others;
Give us men – I say again,
Give us Men!
Give us Men!
Men, who when the tempest gathers,
Grasp the standard of their fathers
In the thickest fight:
Men who strike for home and altar
(Let the crowd cringe and falter),
God defend the right!
True as truth, though lorn and lonely,
Tender, as the brave are only;
Men who tread where saints have trod,
Men for Country – Home – and God;
Give us Men – I say again – again –
Give us such Men!
A Legend of Jerusalem -- [A Poem]
Mrs. Otto N. Schulte, Ward
Place, South Orange, N. J.
dwelt, so runs
the legend, brothers twain,
On Zion's hill long centuries ago.
Below them Jordan's green and fertile plain,
Against the cloudless blue gleamed Hermon's snow,
Westward rose Carmel's purple ridge, and fair
The vine-clad hills, the groves on either hand,
The emerald slopes begemmed with blossoms rare,
The distant glistening sea, the forests grand.
Content they toiled in mutual love and peace,
And being righteous, God upon them smiled,
And blessed their labor with a rich increase,
But unto Ephraim had given no child.
Submissively he saw his hope expire;
Sad oftentimes, yet questioning not God's ways,
Though Reuben's dwelling held his heart's desire,
A son, and daughters fair made glad his days.
Thus sped the years; then came a time of blight,
When labor of the fig and olive failed;
Nor ripening clusters hung on sun-kissed height,
And husbandmen their barren fields bewailed;
Empty the fold, no herd within the stall,
Famine and pestilence walked hand in hand;
Shrouded each home by sorrow's somber pall,
And voice of mourning sounded through the land.
Each heart was saddened by the other's grief
When the brief toil of songless reapers done,
So scant the harvest, numbering every sheaf,
The sum sufficed not for the need of one;
And each took earnest counsel with his heart
When dawned the feast day set for prayer and praise,
How secretly, some cheer he might impart
To light the gloom of erstwhile joyous days.
Moonlight's soft splendor silvered wave and wood,
And Ephraim, deeming that his brother slept,
Arose and hastening, gained the hill where stood
The meagre, scattered shocks from mildew kept,
A sheaf uplifting from his scanty store
He sighed, "My brother, greater is thy need."
Then to the farther field his burden bore,
Nor dreamed that angels marked the kindly deed.
Reuben had waited also for the night,
And softly, silently, he took his way
Where gaunt and shrunken in the yellow light,
His ripened corn upon the hillside lay.
"Brother beloved," he said, "how rich am I
In ail thy lonely, loving heart doth crave,
Half of this treasure on thy field shall lie
Thou shalt rejoice and say the dear Lord gave."
Thrice had they passed each other in the night,
Intent upon their mission; morning came,
And still, O miracle, O wondrous sight,
The sum of tented sheaves was still the same!
The fourth time, lo! the feet of both were set
In the same path, where shadows interlaced,
And midway, silently, the brothers met,
Each understood, and weeping, they embraced.
And on this hallowed spot, fair Zion's hill,
Jerusalem was built, and to this day
The legend beautiful, the pilgrims tell
To travellers passing up the Holy Way.
Make the Voyage Alone -- [A Poem]
must make the voyage
with self alone
Into the beautiful realms of God,
Though it lead you afar and away from home
Into haunts that are seldom trod.
It is nature's plan, it is nature's call,
It is nature's way so true,
And you, the consciousness in it all
Must find what is TRUTH to you.
The Question Box
Story of Freemasonry
In the September issue of The Builder are
on a book called "The Story of Freemasonry." [Lib 1913] Where can I get that
book and what is the price?
From Brother John H. Cowles, 16th and S
W., Washington, D C. The price is fifty cents. You will find it an
* * *
Ritual Of Ancient Egypt
Relative to the inquiry of G.R.D. as to the
Ancient Egypt, let me say that the "Book of the Dead" [Lib 1913; Vol 1, Vol 2, Vol 3] has been translated
by E. A. Wallis Budge, and is published in three volumes, containing
text and an English translation, with illustrations. "Egyptian Ideas of
Future Life," by the same author, is a popular little book with
from the Book of the Dead.
* * *
The First Idealist
For further information regarding Akhnaton, I
refer G. D. to "Tell el Amarne," [Lib 1974] by W. M. Flinders Petrie, who
discovered the site
of Akhnaton's capital which he built after he abandoned Thebes and Amun
This work, containing the results of Petrie's discoveries, illustrates
the short but brilliant period of Mesopotamian influence on Egyptian
art and religion.
* * *
Talmud and Vedas
I would call the attention of J. A.
K. to a small volume entitled "Treasures of the Talmud," [Lib 1882] by Hershon, which
consists of a series of subjects compiled from the Babylonian Talmud. A
of the Vedic Literature is to be found in "Rig-Veda," by F. Max Muller.
(Muller’s Rig-Veda is a two-volume [Lib 1877; Vol 1, Vol 2] publication
in Sanskrit – with the exception of the preface. Readers preferring an
are referred to Ralph T.H. Griffith’s publication of 1896 [Lib 1896] digitally reproduced
in 2005 - rhm)
* * *
White and Black
Will you advise me through your pages, (1) What
present approximate number of Freemasons in the United States? (2) What
of them are white and what percent are colored?
(1) There are, approximately, one million and a
Masons in the United States. (2) The latest facts at hand – 1913 –
Masons, estimates that they number 91,668; no doubt they may safely be
at one hundred thousand by this time. From which it is easy to figure
out the percent.
* * *
What were the Masonic emblems found under
Needle? Are they illustrated anywhere?
See article in The Builder, Vol. 1, p. 18, by
Baird, discussing the emblems found under the Needle when it was moved
to New York; the article is illustrated. The emblems found were as
follows: – A
polished Cube of syenite, a perfect Ashlar; a polished Square; rough
block of syenite – a rough Ashlar; axis stone with figures – like a
a marked stone; hard lime stone with a trowel cemented to the surface;
a lead plummet.
For an elaborate account, see "Egyptian Obelisks," [Lib 1882] by H. H. Gorringe,
who had charge of the removal of the Needle, and who includes in his
accounts of all obelisks brought from Egypt to Europe, their
and the methods of their transportation.
* * *
I understand that after the Civil War, a few of
Grand Lodges permitted their subordinate Lodges to accept candidates
that had been maimed during the war. (1) Will you please tell me what
did this, and if any of them are still allowing it. (2) Is there any
where a man can enter, if he has lost an arm or a leg?
(1) Such candidates might have been permitted
though we do not recall any legislation to that end. If done at all it
by tacit understanding, not by formal law – that is, so far as we are
some Members can furnish further facts. There was a time, along in the
when Grand Lodges were rather lax on the subject, perhaps for the
reason our Brother
gives. (2) There are jurisdictions in which a man may enter who has
lost an arm
or a leg – if he has an artificial limb which permits him formally to
requirements. We are soon to publish all the facts in the case,
covering all the
jurisdictions – and it will be an interesting revelation.
* * *
Differences of Ritual
the York Rite and the American Rite for
degrees one and the same? And is it the Ancient Rite as worked now?
the ritual of Pennsylvania the same as
What are your views as to the correct
three degrees of Masonry?
I find there is a vast difference in the work
the work I have been used to, and it sets a man thinking what is the
As we are soon to publish a brilliant lecture
subject, it will be sufficient for the present to give very brief
answers to these
large questions: –
(1) There is no "ancient York Rite” now in
if by that is meant the work as known in York, England, from whence the
Our American Rite is a modification of a work which has passed through
(2) There are no doubt as many differences
Pennsylvania and Canadian work as between the Pennsylvania ritual and
that of other
jurisdictions in the United States. Pennsylvania adheres, we believe,
to the work
of the "Ancients" as it was before the union of the Ancient and Modern
Grand Lodges in 1813.
(3) The best Masonic work is that which best
the spirit and truth of Masonry; the ritual which makes the truth
Masonry was meant
to teach at once most impressive and most luminous. Such differences as
to do with matters of detail – everywhere the fundamental principles
are the same.
So much, awaiting the lecture which will do much to the clear and set
* * *
Was Thomas Jefferson a Mason? Have just been
over the October Builder, and on page 295 Brother Barry says of
cabinet, "all Masons but Jefferson." I confess that this rather jolted
me, as the impression had always lurked in in my understanding that all
of the signers of the Declaration of Independence were Masons – one of
being a Catholic, and the other a Quaker. Clearly Jefferson was neither
Yet in the same issue, page 312, I am told that Jefferson was made a
Mason in Paris.
What is the truth? –
There is no proof, so far as we are aware, that
was ever made a Mason at any time or anywhere. He may have been made a
Paris, but we asked to be shown. It serves no good purpose to claim as
the Fraternity men of fame and historic importance – unless the facts
and unmistakable. Masonry does not need the patronage of great names,
enough by virtue of its inherent beauty, its benignant spirit, and its
humanity. If it can be established that Jefferson was a Mason, well and
good – it
would show that he was a man of discernment and good sense. It is the
man, not the
Order, who is honored in such cases.
* * *
Royal Arch Literature
Please let me know where I can procure a little
that would be particularly interesting to Royal Arch Masons.
I am preparing an address on the Symbolism of
and if you can render me any assistance I will appreciate it very much.
Unfortunately, the literature of the Chapter
apart from history and ritual, is very meager and unsatisfactory.
– than whom there is no greater interpreter of symbolism now living –
to contribute some articles to The Builder on this subject, and they
will be awaited
with eager expectation. English and American interpretations of the
Royal Arch are
quite different, as we pointed out some time ago. (The Builder,
February and April,
1916.) Of course, we have the "Book of the Chapter," [Lib 1870] by Mackey; also "The
Keystone," [Lib*] by Lawrence (Kenning & Son, 16 Great Queen
W. C., $1.50); and the delightful essays of Brother G. W. Warvelle [Lib
1900], Masonic Temple,
Chicago – to name no others. What we need very much is a book of the
on the symbolism of the Chapter, after the manner of Mackey's book on
three degrees. As for the Keystone, its symbolism is so obvious, so
it ought to be easy to interpret.
* * *
Would you be kind enough to throw more light on
origin of Negro Masonry; whether or not they originally worked under
by some Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons; whether or not they
to have carried with them the regular work in all of the 33 degrees;
and the connection,
if any, of Prince Hall with regular Masonry.
These questions have been the occasion of
in times past, and need not be revived for two reasons: first, because
single new fact can be added to the masterly thesis of the late W. H.
Upton on "Negro
Masonry," [Lib 1899] which
grew out of a report to the Grand Lodge of Washington regarding the
rights and status
of Negro Masons. Second, it would bring up once more the vexed
questions of recognition,
which, as the late Theodore Parvin said, is a question of taste, not of
"History of Freemasonry Among Colored People in America," [Lib*] by
(Macoy Co., New York), also "Prince Hall and his Followers," [Lib*] by
G. W. Crawford, The Crisis, 70 Fifth Ave., N. Y., especially the letter
quoted on pp. 84-86. Our Brother will find his questions answered in
especially the first.
* * *
The Bible in Masonry
Answering a Brother who asks for a list of
allusions in the Masonic rituals, we have found the following; it may
not be complete,
but it will give him an interesting hour to look them up. Psalm
cxxxiii; Psalm cxviii:22;
Ezekiel xliv:1-3-5; Matt. xxi:42; Mark vii:10; Acts iv:11; Rev. ii:17;
Psalm xxiv; Psalm cxxii; Chronicles vi, vii; Psalm xxiii; Isaiah
iii:1-6; Chronicles xxxvi:11-20; Ezra i:1-3; Exodus iii:13-14; Psalm
cxliii; Exodus iv:9; Haggai ii:1-9-23; Zachariah iv:6-10; Amos ix:11;
xxxi:24-26; Exodus xxv:21; Exodus xvi:23-24; Numbers xvii:10; Hebrews
vi:2-3; John i:1-5; Genesis xiv:12-24; Hebrews vii:1-6 17-20-1; 1st
1st Kings vii:40; 1st Kings vi:27; Rev. xxii:12-14; Psalm xv; Psalm
Kings iv:1, 5, 6; 1st Kings v:17, 18;1st Kings vii:13-14 – Ezekiel
xxxi:24-26; Exodus xvi:33, 34; Numbers xvii:10; Numbers vii:89; Exodus
iv; Nehemiah iv, v:1-20; Ezra v; Ezra vi, v:1-15; James iv:9-26-27;
Matt. xxviv:36-49; Matt. xxviiv:24-37; Acts iv:15-26; Acts xxxviiiv:
1-5; St. John
xix, v:19; St. John xxv:24-28; Ephesians viv:10-17; John xxi.25-26;
Psalms xxxiv:17-22; Psalms xliv:6; Psalms xliv:15; Psalms
xc:9, 10, 12; Psalms ciii:14-17; I Cor. xv:51, 55; I Cor. xv:56, 57.
E.A. Degree – Amos vii:7, 8.
F.C. Degree – Ecclesiastes xii:1, 7.
M. M. Degree – Psalms civ:14; Amos vii:7, 8.
* * *
Scottish Rite Philosophy
If you will permit me to ask you a few
questions I will
be very grateful. I would like to read Pike's "Morals and Dogma," but
am unable to comprehend the more philosophical portions of it. What
would you suggest
as a preliminary course of reading – something in the way of a primer
I am an ardent student of the Scottish Rite, and it seems to me that
there is a
message in it, but at times I wonder if there is. If you will answer
for me, it will help me much: – Is there a royal secret? What do you
by the Holy Doctrine? Could it be supposed that there is any Masonic
in the opening words of the Gospel of St. John?
Thank you, Brother, for so frank a letter –
of Masons would write the same kind of letters, if they were honest
or cared enough about the matter to bother to write at all. As for
and Dogma," [Lib 1871] we have
been saying of late that hardly any book is more in need of
elucidation, and a more
ill-arranged book we have seldom encountered. As it stands, it is more
profound – as witness the fact that this Brother, like thousands of
received the degrees and studied the book, is uncertain whether there
is a Royal
Secret and a Holy Doctrine. Nor is it any lack of intelligence on his
something is wrong with our method of teaching, and it is time that we
matter in hand to devise a more successful – more sensible – way of
the truth which the Scottish Rite has to teach. These words are
written, not in
a spirit of carping criticism, but by one who loves the Rite, believes
in it with
all his heart, and would fain do something to make it more efficient in
the wise and good and beautiful truth committed to its care. Just
because that truth
is so important, so emancipating, we must "get it across," 'to use the
talk of the street, and make it inhabit the minds of our young men.
Now as to the letter:
(1) We have several times mentioned books for
in the study of philosophy, one of the best being "Philosophy, What is
[Lib 1914] by F.B.
Jevons. (Putnam's Co., New York). Read this along with the lectures of
on "The Philosophy of Masonry," [Lib 1915] and you will see that the
philosophy of Masonry
is simply its nature, its reason for being, its uses to the individual
and to society.
As Kant said long ago, philosophy does not discover truth; it sets it
relates it to other truth, and shows its practical value for life. When
What is Masonry? What is it for? How can we use it? we are dealing with
(2) Is there a Royal Secret? Indeed, yes; the
secret of life every man possesses – all that Masonry can do is to make
of it and how to use it. The great secret of life, that which makes our
valid, our faith firm, our hope sure and steadfast, what is it? What
can it be,
save the kinship of the soul with God? Let a man realize that fact –
not as a vague
theory regarding mankind in general, but in regard to himself – and how
this world is. It lights up like an aurora.
(3) What do we understand by the holy doctrine?
we expounded it only an issue or so ago, describing it as the Doctrine
of the Balance
– concerning which we have received more letters of thanks than for
have ever written in these pages. (4) Have the opening words of the
Gospel of John
a Masonic significance? Certainly; in that they tell of one Life in
which the Lost
Word was found in the only way in which it can ever be found on earth
or in heaven.
"The word was made flesh," – that is the whole of it; translating the
truth into life and character! That is what Brother Waite means when he
day to day we pronounce the Lost Word with our lips, but it remains
lost until we
utter it with our hearts."
* * *
Dear Sir and Brother: – Having read "The
since its first edition, and appreciating your desire to keep its
accurate and reliable, I feel assured that you will welcome and accept
that may be submitted by the brethren, after due examination and
Referring to your valuable compiled table on
of ritual, page 349, November, 1916, edition, I note that you list
the States exemplifying "Uniform Work." In this, I can personally
you are in error, in that the Grand Lodge of Louisiana recognizes and
separate and distinct standards of ritual and work in its Jurisdiction;
is known as the York Rite and the Scottish Rite rituals are
in New Orleans, and I have personally witnessed the conferring of the
degrees in Lodges of both Rites in that City.
The Lodges permitted to work under the Scottish
Union, No. 172, working
Cervantes, No. 5, working in Spanish.
Perseverance, No. 4, working in French.
Dante, No. 174, working in Italian.
Polar Star, No. 1, working in French.
Germania, No. 46, working in German.
All of the above Lodges are chartered, regular
under the jurisdiction of the Grand Lodge of Louisiana. Other Lodges in
work in the York Rite ritual. Both Rites are recognized by Chapter,
I am further informed that Scottish Rite Lodges
in New York, Wisconsin and California, under regular charters by the
but personally I have not visited these Lodges, although frequently in
when traveling. I declined invitations to visit the New Orleans foreign
for several years, thinking them clandestine, until reliably informed
Lodges were all "regular," and satisfying myself of this fact by legal
information. I would recommend all of my brethren to witness the
Scottish Rite symbolic
degrees at the first opportunity; assuring that all properly certified
will receive a Masonic welcome, brotherly hospitality and entertainment
interest to all searchers after more light.
Sincerely and fraternally,
T. Skinkle, 33d, Chicago.
Better Late Than Never
Dear Brother Editor: – Will you be so kind as
me a short space in your columns that I may defend myself from the
upon me by a careless brother?
The revival, if I am allowed to call it so, of
Masonry is a fact; with it came out a thorough literary spurt, and,
as a model, a Masonic Manual is being written, inspiring our ideas in
famous "The Builders" of your ever practical Grand Lodge. Together with
it a valiant push was given to our Grand Lodge Library, several
are already collected and the existing number of foreign proceedings
publications carefully rearranged; on that account we came to the
discovery of several
missing volumes, among them Vol. I of the History of the Grand Lodge of
A few lines to the most obliging Grand
Parvin, brought the precious work and with it a surprise: the erudite
Joseph E. Morcombe, author of the volume, had done Cuba the great honor
her in it, but unhappily in doing so he was wilfully deceived by the
of a brother Mason.
In page 48 of the said volume, Bro. Morcombe
a paragraph from the correspondence report of North Dakota for 1903,
which is intended
to be a translation from a part of a previous Masonic Chart published
by the undersigned
in the Proceedings of Cuba for the year 1900, inserting subsequently
to it from the Brother correspondent of South Dakota. Unhappily neither
of the correspondents
are Spanish scholars and the victim of all this has been the
Morcombe, who in a moment of unmasonic wrath galled me, in the History,
and as showing an exhibition of ignorance. If Bro. Morcombe should ever
these lines I am sure that he will repent of his insinuation, thrown
upon me many
years ago, but from which I could not before extricate myself, as his
History only reached me a few days hence.
So runs the paragraph origin of this
find a Masonic pedigree, taken from the annual of the Grand Lodge of
the introduction of Masonry into the world. England is given as the
root, and the
date of its establishment as June 24, 1717. Tracing the paternity of
our own Grand
Lodge of North Dakota, we find that England chartered Pennsylvania in
chartered Missouri in 1807; from Missouri sprang Iowa, 1840, and from
South Dakota intends to correct the above, as
English derivation of Masonry, accepting the theory of the Scotch
Lodge Kilwinning" and, in what refers to the establishment of Missouri,
it was done by Pennsylvania or Tennessee. Brother Morcombe, remembering
Bro. Robbins (of Illinois) read the paragraph and probably said:
does not speak English is no Masonry at all," and gave full credit to
Dakota, without ever giving a hearing to the modest Latin Mason to whom
so tremendous misconception, or ever trying to verify the alleged
neither of the Dakota correspondents were Spanish scholars; but in
doing so he failed,
carrying into partnership the innocent Grand Lodge of Iowa that paid
for the History.
I did not say any such a thing as has been
ascribed to me, it is a question of Light not of Right or less of
Might. Had the
brethren read the note, inserted in large type at the foot of the
chart, no chance
for the flogging or ever for this correction were necessary. What I
the data given is intended for, is the origin of the pioneer or first
lodge in which
Masonic light shone in all countries. As you can see, this is a very
and explains readily why Pennsylvania is referred to. Is it true or not
chartered Louisiana Lodge, at St. Genevieve, Mo.? Is it true or not
that the said
Lodge, whether formed by French traders or not, or whether it had to
charter soon afterwards, was the first regular lodge in Missouri? Is it
Louisiana Lodge was chartered in 1807? If so, as nobody can question, I
perfectly right, in my assertions, the same with Missouri as with all
If we remember, regarding the American
any Grand Lodge can charter lodges in an unoccupied territory, having
concurrent jurisdiction in it with all other regular Grand Lodges, how
can it be
possible to trace a genealogical tree when many parents are to be
accorded to an
offspring? If any of the Dakota correspondents can do that they will
perform a marvel,
as no human being can accomplish such a thing. It is also true that all
connected with this incident in the States did not take the trouble to
data appended; had they done so they could have arrived to the
conclusion that either
they were wrong or I had to be sent to a mad house.
More yet, how can any Mason say that a Grand
charter another Grand Lodge? We, Cuban Masons, novel as we are, cannot
a blunder; remember St. Paul and believe that Charity is the greatest
of all virtues,
and that is what I claim for me in this case.
Hoping that you will consider mine a just
though convinced, as I am, that among my people many Sancho Panzas can
D. Quixote is to be met with not only among Spaniards but among other
Cervantes and Shakespeare were undoubtedly very bright stars in the XVI
no wonder they both died together.
Thanking you for this great favor I am
F. de P. Rodriguez, Cuba.
* * *
The Secret, Uniform Ballot
(The following letter is so interesting, so
that we venture to give it to the Craft without permission of the
whom it passed; trusting two noble hearts to forgive us a seeming
the amenities. If they do not grant us pardon, well, we promise never
to do so again
– until another letter of equal interest and importance comes our way.
had better have a care about writing such instructive letters and
letting them pass
through this office; for they will most certainly be waylaid – for
which we have
the example of the British Government.)
Dear Brother: – You may recall that I once
that I would like to give you my real reasons for thinking that Brother
on "The Secret, Unanimous Ballot" was entirely wrong and unsupported by
facts – that in what I had said previously, I had not gone below the
will epitomize my views as follows:
of the Craft, during the first century of its existence, has been
and only in recent times have the true conditions been brought out.
Grand Lodge of 1717 was responsible, subsequently, for many alterations
in the work and practice.
Lodge of Ireland preserved and continued the ancient working.
Grand Lodge of 1751 also practiced the ancient work and had the hearty
sympathy of the Grand Lodge of Ireland.
Grand Lodge, and the Grand Lodge of Ireland, had a predominant
influence in the
American Colonies, and the work, as practiced in the United States is
the work of 1717-23 than that practiced in England today. From which I
that instead of "The Secret, Unanimous Ballot" being an American
the shoe is on the other foot and the Mother Grand Lodge is guilty of
With these premises enunciated I will enlarge
only remarking here that I will not burden this with references, but
that I shall make is at my hand and can be verified by volume, number
Until comparatively recent time all we knew of
of the Craft was gathered from the works of Anderson, Preston, Kloss,
and Oliver, who all followed, more or less closely, in the path marked
out by Anderson.
Then arose a school of writers, such as Gould, Hughan, Lane, Woodford,
Conder and some others who, with infinite patience and a vast amount of
legends from facts and gave to the Fraternity a knowledge of
Freemasonry that proved
of rare fascination and a solid groundwork on which to base further
As bearing on the subject under inquiry I would
Brother Chetwode Crawley the first place, (with Brother Sadler as a
and, looking at the changes that were made by the Premier Grand Lodge
the best critic
we have, as being free to note such changes, without fear of
From my reading I am convinced that many
made in the work by the Premier Grand Lodge; that these changes were
for the formation of the Ancient Grand Lodge; that the original work
usages, as practiced 1717-23, were preserved by the Grand Lodge of
Ireland and later,
by the Ancient Grand Lodge who, avowedly, practiced "Irish" Masonry.
As throwing a side light on "Irish" Masonry
it is of interest to note that during the 17th and early part of the
Dublin was as much an English city as any city in England itself. The
manners were essentially English and entirely distinct from the rest of
When the Grand Lodge of Dublin was formed, it was the counterpart of
the one in
London; the "Constitution" of 1723 were adopted and reprinted as Irish
Constitutions; the same Brother served as Grand Master in London and
later, in Dublin.
Brother Crawley says:
"As far as our
researches have conducted us, no difference has been observed between
of Freemasonry practiced in England and Ireland before the year 1730…
year, the case begins to change."
In 1730, when Prichard's "Masonry Dissected"
[Lib 1730] was published, it
was adopted as the basis of the Irish ritual. As bearing on the
Prichard's work, two points are to be noted. First, certain words and
(admittedly) transposed by the Premier Grand Lodge, to detect those
seeking to gain
admission by posting up on Prichard's work. Second, some few years ago,
to obtain a copy of "Masonry Dissected," and having despaired of
I wrote a Brother in England asking if he would send me a written copy
of the one
in his possession. His reply was, "his E. A. obligation prevented him
complying with my request." As the Brother referred to is one of the
Masonic scholars of the day, and had favored me greatly before and
since, I drew
my own conclusions, which were verified when I was so fortunate as to
secure a copy
of the book itself.
But the Irish preferred to follow the original
and have continued to do so to the present time; it was this fact that
led me to
use the words at the conclusion of my first article – to the Lodges
the Irish Constitution must we go today, for the purest Ancient Craft
During the stormy times, 1722-1723, in London,
Grand Lodge was the prey of the Stuart and Jacobite factions, each
seeking to gain
control in the hope and expectation of using it in furtherance of their
ends, and to the storm and stress of that period may safely be assigned
for that departure from Regulation VI, referring to the rule for
the Society. The Irish Constitutions of 1730 reprints Regulation VI,
Constitutions of 1723 [Lib 1723] verbatim,
and while that of 1741 is a duplicate of the "New Book of
of 1738 [Lib 1738], the practice,
as far as "unanimous consent" is concerned, has never varied.
Another point that deserves attention is, that
in Ireland has never been written or printed, but is passed (literally)
to ear. Brother Crawley says he is "the accredited exponent of our
the Ritual that served the Ancients as a standard and never was
committed to writing.
In the next place, that Ritual has been passed on to me by brethren who
their lesson from the lips of the leaders of the Ancients of the last
From my reading I am thoroughly convinced that
as practiced in Ireland today, is nearest to the Masonry as practiced
and subsequent to 1717, without entering into the question of degrees.
Is it not
a fair inference that where the esoteric work has been so carefully
the customs would have been preserved in like manner.
Just a word as to innovations. Gould says:
"The book (Constitutions
of 1723) introduces three striking innovations. It discards
Christianity as the
(only) religion of Masonry, forbids the working of the Master's part in
Lodges, and arbitrarily imposes on the English Craft the use of two
– Entered Apprentice and Fellow Craft – which had no previous existence
in its terminology.
Against these deviations the brethren rebelled."
If Article VI of the Old Regulations, had been
I think it would have been included in the above paragraph.
All this as leading up to one point; that
latter half of the 18th century, the influence of the "ancients," with
its ritual and usages, largely predominated in the American colonies;
was the influence of the Irish Military Lodges to be taken into
with the intimate connection existing between the Grand Lodge of
Ireland and the
Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania, all stamping Masonry in this country as
distinct from that practiced in England by the Modern Grand Lodge.
the "Ancients" were more in sympathy with the Colonies in their
for independence, than were the Moderns. This also would have its
effect when the
Fraternity threw off its allegiance – Masonic – to the Mother country.
by Brother Crawley:
"It is hardly
too much to say that towards the close of the last (18th) century the
of Moderns stood isolated among English-speaking Grand Lodges. Even in
where it had been first to plant Lodges, the more democratic
organization of the
Ancients, aided by the ubiquitous Military Lodges, in which Ireland had
such a preponderance,
rapidly and surely won its way to acceptance. It has been generally
found more convenient
to ignore this isolation than to accept the conclusions that must be
Just a few words more and I will close. There
is a point
that has great weight with me, though it may not appeal so forcibly to
Anderson wrote the New Book of Constitutions, of 1738, 15 years had
he compiled the one of 1723. Prior to that year, no minutes had been
kept of Grand
Lodge Transactions, and subsequently, but the barest skeleton.
Among English commentators I find the
be very chary of accepting the statements contained in the New Book. No
the influences brought to bear on him in his later task, but we do know
crept in and in the years, became established usages in the Premier
until 1813 – the year of the Union – when they practically surrendered
to the Ancients – the plurality of black balls being one of the few
saved. Brother Gould uses some very strong language in referring to
in the Constitutions of 1738, rather evading the question of veracity
by an implication
of imbecility, owing to his declining years.
* * *
The Fame of the Craft
(The following editorial from the Kansas City
entitled "A Significant Departure," speaks for itself and also for the
good name of the Craft, giving due praise to our Brethren in Georgia
for their noble
work. It is a pleasure to reproduce it, because the praise is so richly
and, further, because we agree with the wise man who said that "no good
can be praised enough.")
A recent issue of The Builder, a Masonic
gives the details of an interesting and significant extension of the
principles of the Masonic order to include all mankind, emphasizing the
of man, upon which all the great fraternal orders are based. The
Scottish Rite bodies
of Georgia have recently located at Atlanta the Scottish Rite
for Crippled Children, which is asserted to be the first institution of
established by any of the large fraternal orders for the benefit of all
its services, regardless of fraternal affiliations and exclusively
in its operation.
As its name implies, it is solely for the cure
children, but no questions of the religious convictions of their
parents, or of
fraternal connection are asked. No payment is accepted for the services
which are along the lines of Kansas City's Mercy hospital. The only
are the curability of the little patient and the inability of the
parent to pay
for surgical and hospital treatment. The best physicians in the South
in the faculty and The Builder gives many touching instances of
The project is intensely interesting on its
challenging the sympathy of all who want to see the mournful sum of
human pain reduced
– and particularly those who pity the sufferings of little children.
But it is especially
significant because it represents a wide departure from the principles
of most of the great fraternal and religious bodies – especially the
of this sort are maintained by many of the great orders and
throughout the country. All of these do an immense amount of good
within the special
scope of their membership. There are Masonic and Odd Fellow and Pythian
homes; many of the big crafts have national institutions where aged and
members may spend their last days in comfort. There are Catholic and
and Jewish homes and hospitals and retreats and though it is not to be
that lines are too rigidly drawn, yet some name is inscribed above the
most or all of these institutions. These orders and denominations spend
in the aggregate
tens of millions of dollars, primarily for the relief of members, but
of many of these homes and hospitals swing wide for the sufferer or
is not bound to the order or to the church by fraternal or
The Scottish Rite experiment in Georgia is, for all that, a pioneer in
what is may
be hoped will be a movement more generally adopted which, while taking
for "them of the household of religious or fraternal faith," will
seize the opportunity to teach the great truth, broader than any order
or any denomination,
that God is the father of all and that every man is not only the
brother of every
other man but is his keeper as well. The Scottish Rite bodies of
Georgia have reflected
immense credit upon themselves and upon the order they represent in
way in which it is hoped many other feet will walk.
On The Several Liberal Arts and
Grammar rules instruct
the tongue and pen;
Rhetoric teaches eloquence to men;
By Logic we are taught to reason well;
Music has charms beyond our power to tell.
The use of numbers numberless we find;
Geometry gave measure to mankind;
The Heavenly System elevates the mind.
All these, and many secrets more,
The MASONS taught in days of yore.
Spe01 / auth. Speth George W. - Detroit : The Palestine Bulletin, 1901.
- Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 26. - 2.8 MB.
A Sketch of Capitular Masonry
War00 / auth. Warvelle Geo. W.. - Chicago : Geo. W. Warvelle, 1900. -
Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 52. - 1.4 MB.
Cha17 / auth. Charnwood Lord. - London : Constable & Company
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Across Venezuela and Colombia
Bin09 / auth. Bingham Hiram. - New Haven : Yale Publishing Association,
1909. - Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 299. - 6.8 MB.
An Encyclopeadia of Freemasonry
and its Kindred Sciences
Mac14 / auth. Mackey Albert G.. - New York : The Masonic History
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An Encyclopeadia of Freemasonry
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1 : p. 2132. - 7.2 MB - No Graphics - Digital Text only.
Aspects of Infinite Mystery
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1916. - Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 369. - 8.0 MB.
Book of Constitutions
And38 / auth. Anderson James. - London : J. Robinson, 1738. - Vol. 1 :
1 : p. 249. - 16.2 MB.
Book of Constitutions
And23 / auth. Anderson James. - London : William Hunter, 1723. -
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1 : p. 119. - 6.0 MB.
Collected Essays &
Papers Related to Freemasonry
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Design in Theory and Practice
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1910. - Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 362. - 23.6 MB - Illustrated.
Gor82 / auth. Gorringe Henry H. - New York : Henry Gorringe, 1882. -
Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 250. - 16.7 MB.
Hud16 / auth. Hudson William H. - New York : Alfred Knopf, 1916. - Vol.
1 : 1 : p. 364. - 9.3 MB.
Guilds and Companies of London
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History of the Conquest of Peru
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History of the Conquest of Peru
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History of the GL of Iowa Vol 1
Mor10 / auth. Morcombe Joseph E. - Cedar Rapids : GL of Iowa, 1910. -
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Hymns of the Rig-Veda Vol 1
Mul77 / auth. Muller Max F. - London : Trubner and Co., 1877. - Vol. 1
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Hymns of the Rig-Veda Vol 2
Max771 / auth. Muller Max F. - London : Trubner and Co., 1877. - Vol. 2
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Wri07 / auth. Wright Robert C. - Ann Arbour : Tyler Publishing Co.,
1907. - Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 143. - 7.9 MB.
Initiation into Literature
Fag14 / auth. Faguet Emile / trans. Gordon Sir Home. - New York :
Putnam's Sons, 1914. - Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 278. - 4.4 MB.
Initiation into Philosophy
Fag141 / auth. Faguet Emile / ed. Gordon Sir Home. - New York :
Putnam's Sons, 1914. - Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 269. - 4.0 MB.
Car61 / auth. Carpenter John and Whitington Richard / trans. Riley
Henry T. - London : Richard Griffin and Company, 1861. - Vol. 1 : 1 :
p. 685. - 28.4 MB.
Light on a Dark Subject
Upt99 / auth. Upton William H. - Seattle : The Pacific Mason Publisher,
1899. - Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 141. - 10.0 MB.
Pri30 / auth. Prichard Samuel. - London : Charles Corbett, 1730. - 20th
Edition : Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 35. - 1.7 MB.
Morals and Dogma
Pik71 / auth. Pike Albert. - Charleston : Supreme Council AASR, 1871. -
Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 895. - Formatted & Indexed by rhm - 7.6 MB.
Philosophy What Is It?
Jev14 / auth. Jevons Frank B.. - New York : Putnam's Sons, 1914. - Vol.
1 : 1 : p. 186. - 4.7 MB.
Hud04 / auth. Hudson William H. - London : Duckworth & Co,
1904. - Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 364. - 10.2 MB.
Tell el Amarna
Pet74 / auth. Petrie W M Flinders. - London : Methuen & Co.,
1974. - Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 95. - 31.4 MB.
The Book of Enoch
Cha93 / auth. Charles Robert H. - Oxford : Clarendon Press, 1893. -
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The Book of the Chapter
Mac70 / auth. Mackey Albert G.. - New York : Clark & Maynard,
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The Book of the Dead Vol 1
Bud13 / auth. Budge E A Wallis. - New York : G. E. Putnam's Sons, 1913.
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The Book of the Dead Vol 2
Bud131 / auth. Budge E A Wallis. - New York : G. E. Putnam's Sons,
1913. - Vol. 2 : 3 : p. 377. - 18.4 MB.
The Book of the Dead Vol 3
Bud132 / auth. Budge E A Wallis. - New York : G. E. Putnam's Sons,
1913. - Vol. 3 : 3 : p. 44. - Vignette 2 and part of Vignette 19
missing - 4.8 MB.
The Cathedral Builders
Sco99 / auth. Scott Leader. - London : Sampson Low, Marston &
Co., 1899. - Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 520. - 16.1 MB.
The Comacines Their
Predecessors & Their Successors
Rav10 / auth. Ravenscroft W.. - London : Elliot Stock, 1910. - Vol. 1 :
1 : p. 94. - 3.4 MB.
The Hymns of the Rig-Veda
Gri96 / auth. Griffith Ralph T H. - 1896. - Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 506. - 2.7
The Monroe Doctrine, An
Bin13 / auth. Bingham Hiram. - New Haven : Yale University Press, 1913.
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The New World
Bla15 / auth. Black Hugh. - New York : Fleming H. Revell Company, 1915.
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The Philosophy of Masonry
Pou15 / auth. Pound Roscoe. - [s.l.] : The Builder Magazine, 1915. -
Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 53. - 0.3 MB.
The Story of Freemasonry
Sib13 / auth. Sibley W G. - Gallipolis : The Lions Paw Club, 1913. -
3rd : Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 122. - 4.3 MB.
The Wonderland of Peru
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Dettweiler Inc., 1913. - Vol. 1 : 1 : p. 206. - 44.2 MB.
Those About Trench
Lew16 / auth. Lewis Edwin H. - New York : The Macmillan Company, 1916.
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Treasures of the Talmud
Her82 / auth. Hershon Paul I. - London : James Nisbet & Col,
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What is Freemasonry
Spe93 / auth. Speth George W. - London : George Kenning, 1893. - Vol. 1
: 1 : p. 16. - 0.3 MB.