The President's Corner THE FIRST SEMI-ANNUAL MEETING
Freemasonry vs. The Media and The Law Investigate Freemasonry
LEG-acy Operative Masons and Their Works
Heresy The Pursuit of Truth
Remember the Maine NOTABLE FREEMASONS
Books of Interest to Masons
Through Masonic Windows
Jerry Marsengill, FPS Editor
2714 Park Place
Des Moines, IA 50312 (515) 244-2540
Alphonse Cerza, FPS, Life, Assoc. Editor
237 Millbridge Road
Riverside, IL 60546
John Black Vrooman, FPS, Life
P.O. Box 402 Editor Emeritus
St. Louis, MO 63166
Allen E. Roberts, FPS, President
Drawer 70, 1-A South Holly Ave
Highland Springs, VA 23075 (804) 737-4498
John R. Nocas, FPS, 1st Vice President
P O. Box 2366
Inglewood, CA 9030500 (213) 678-2594
Jerry Marsengill, FPS, 2nd Vice President
2714 Park Place
Des Moines, IA 50312 (515) 244-2540
Edward R. Schmidt, MPS Acting Exec. Sec
201 Early Ave
Sandston, VA 23150 (804) 737-2255
Henry G. Law, MPS, Treasurer
2608 E. Riding Dr.
Wilmington, DE 19808 (302) 737-9083
LIVING PAST PRESIDENTS
Lee E. Wells
AIphonse Cerza, FPS
Judge Robert H. Gollmar, FPS
William R. Denslow, FPS
Robert V. Osborne, FPS
Eugene S Hopp, FPS
Dwight L Smith, FPS
Robert L Dillard Jr., FPS
Bruce H. Hunt, FPS
EXECUTIVE SECRETARY EMERITUS
Carl R. Griesen, FPS
S. Brent Morris, FPS
Ronald E. Heaton, FPS
The President's Corner
The First Semi-Annual Meeting
Freemasonry vs. The Media and The Law
Operative Masons And Their Works
How To Form A Chapter
The Pursuit Of Truth
Remember The Maine
We have a problem!
Al Cerza Reviews Books of Interest to Masons
Through Masonic Windows
We were forced to cut the size of the magazine this month because our funds are low. We hope we can go back to our regular size for August. You can help us after that. We will send out dues notices for 1986 in August. If you will pay them promptly we should never again have to reduce the size of our magazine. The slight increase in dues should take care of that for all of us. Thanks for understanding.
The President's Corner
by Allen E. Roberts FPS
I continue to be excited about our Society, and I hope you will be, also. For the first time in our fifty-eight year history the Society will hold a Semi-Annual meeting.
At the invitation of Wm. M. Taylor Chapter of The Philalethes Society the meeting will be held in Houston, Texas, on October 5, 1985. The details are outlined elsewhere, but let me emphasise a couple of points: 1. It will be an all day workshop and seminar, 2. Our ladies will be entertained during the day and will be urged to attend our Assembly and Feast during the evening. I fully expect more Masonic information will be imparted in this one day than ever has been before anywhere. And it's good to know every member of our Executive Board will be there.
It's also good to know our Society has stopped hiding its light under the proverbial bushel. Two well-known Masonic publications are carrying feature articles about the Society. They are also helping us to increase our membership. You will note the four-color brochure with this edition of our top-rated magazine. I hope you will use it to sign up a new member. Then ask for more. We'll try to keep the supply inexhaustible. As I noted in the last edition, if we can double our membership the dues increase for 1986 should be the last for the foreseeable future.
I have reappointed Walter J. Harmon Chairman of our Internal and Public Relations Commission, and Wallace McLeod Chairman of our International Relations Commission. John Nocas, our First Vice President, will continue to work with our Chapters. William Copenhaver has been appointed Chairman of the Membership Commission. S. Brent Morris, FPS, will Chair the Certificate of Literature Commission and will be assisted by John Mauk Hilliard, FPS, and Richard Sands, FPS.
The sudden and unexpected resignation of the Acting Treasurer caused us concern. We were fortunate, however, to find an excellent replacement. Your Executive Board has elected Henry G. Law, MPS, of Delaware, as Treasurer of The Philalethes Society. We look forward to a long and mutually profitable association with "Hank."
Here's an advance note about our Assembly and Feast. It will be held on Friday, February, 14, 1986, at 6:00 p.m., in the Hotel Washington. Wallace McLeod of Canada will be the Lecturer. We will NOT have chicken for the entree. The preregistration will remain at $20 ($22.50 if purchased on the morning of the 14th). You may send your check to the Acting Executive Secretary any time now. You will receive a post card confirming your registration. And we're going to have a Workshop! This will follow the Feast. We are combining what proved successful for over 30 years and still join in the type of feast our Brethren of centuries ago enjoyed.
Let's continue to work together for the benefit of our Society and Freemasonry in general.
THE FIRST SEMI-ANNUAL MEETING
by R. A. Ford, MPS
Wm. M Taylor Chapter of The Philalethes Society will host the first Semi-Annual meeting of the Society ever held. And for the first time in its 57 year history it will meet in Texas.
On October 5, 1985, the President of The Philalethes Society will call an official meeting of the Society to order. It will be held in Houston, Texas. The Marriott Hotel (near the Astrodome) will be the headquarters. A special rate (not to exceed $50 plus tax per room) has been promised by the hotel. Transportation will be provided from the hotel to the Shrine where all activities will take place. Registration will start at 8 a.m.; the meetings will start at 9 a.m.
This will be a Seminar/Workshop. We want all participants to come ready for work. That means you should leave your coats and ties in the hotel or at home. Dress for the Assembly and Feast in the evening will be business suits. Our ladies will be entertained during the day.
The morning session will be devoted to problems of Freemasonry in general. Featured will be a keynote address by John E. "Jack" Kelly, GSW of the Grand Lodge of Texas. Several short papers will follow with plenty of time for discussion. There will be a coffee break. And there will be a bountiful buffet lunch.
The afternoon session will be devoted to "Communicating in Freemasonry. "John R. Nocas, First Vice President of the Society. as the keynote speaker. Jerry Marsengill, Second Vice President and Editor, will discuss research and writing and how to do them. There will be other items of concern to the Society as a whole, again with plenty of time for discussion. Time permitting we will view and discuss Allen Roberts "Breaking Barriers to Communication," a motion picture featuring the late Conrad Hahn.
Our ladies will be invited, and urged to attend the Assembly and Feast. There will be a fellowship period at 5:30 p.m.; the feast (a 12 ounce ribeye steak with the trimmings): wine and grape juice will be served for the toasts Robert L. Dillard, FPS, Past President of the Society, will be the master of ceremonies, Allen E. Roberts, FPS. International President, will speak on "He Plucked Off His Shoe..."
The registration fee will be $35 if made by September 15; $40 thereafter. This will include breaks, lunch hospitality and the Assembly and Feast. The cost for the ladies to attend the Feast will be $20. This will include the hospitality rooms at the hotel and after the Feast.
For registration and hotel reservations send your check for $35 (or $55 if your wife is joining us) to. R.A. Ford 4802 De Milo Drive, Houston, TX 77092. You will pay the hotel for its accommodations.
Don't miss this historic event. We expect this to be the largest meeting ever held by The Philalethes Society. Be a part of it.
Freemasonry vs. The Media and The Law
by Steven J. Pocock MPS
"Time runs out for Britain's secret police"...Sept. 6th 1984. So ran the banner headline in the British tabloid the Daily Express. Beside the headline was portrayed an English 'bobby's' (Policeman's) helmet with a square and compass attached. The sensationalistic British press once more had found new fodder for their insatiable appetite of besmirching anything that they felt could not be understood by either themselves, or their readers.
There have been many exposures' of Freemasonry in the past, none which have been particularly flattering of the Craft, some even damaging such as the 'Morgan Affair' and his supposed abduction in 1826. In the 20's and the 30's in England, the Duke of Connaught, Grand Master of the United Grand Lodge of England authorized statements to the press summarising its aims and objectives, in consequence of fears that had been expressed about the political nature of the movement. The famous Italian P2 Lodge scandal in 1980 and the associated bizarre killing of Roberto Calvi on Blackfriars Bridge, fueled the press's penchant for yet another Exposure' of Freemasonry.
They didn't have to wait long. In the 70's, allegations of corruption in the Pornography Squad were made. This involved a Chief Det. Supt. William Moody, who it seems, was accused with other members of the force of accepting bribes from those under investigation. Apparently, both the accused and the investigating officers all belonged to the same lodge. Moody and ten others were jailed for 3-12 years. One of the biggest investigations into police corruption called "Operation Countryman", was thought unnecessary until the Commissioner of London Police from 1971-1977 was accused of promoting incompetents. Bank robberies and murder were associated with this investigation, and the police were again alleged to have colluded in the crimes.
Then came the "Woolard Case". Reports have it that this Chief Inspector was investigating corruption in Islington Council, North London. On learning that two of the suspects allegedly belonged to the same lodge as a number of his senior officers, he bypassed them and sent this report to the Director of Public Prosecutions. What transpired after is one of conjecture. In 1982 he was taken off the case and put back into uniform, and alleged that he was "obstructed" from seeing the Commissioner of Metropolitan Police.
I should add at this point that the "freedom of the Press" in Great Britain has no parallel. The above information was culled from accounts in British newspapers, and even the most respectable of them have no illusions of what sells. No one is exempt from their attacks. Under the heading "The royal connection", is given an account of the association of the M.W. the Grand Master, the Duke of Kent. Added to this, is the disjointed reference "that for policemen in particular, whose job isolates them from the people they serve, it (masonry) provides a friendly, ready-made social club".
Always a problem in the past, has been that of the relationship between the Church and the Craft. Not to be out-done, several of the clergy voiced their opinions in the press.
The Rector of a small parish in the south of England, in a letter distributed to his parishioners said "I know three clergymen who, as their lives developed possible for clergymen too - felt that they should resign from being masons. Such things I believe, can act as an obstruction to spiritual growth". The Rev. S. Arbuthnot of the London healing Mission, disclosed in a leaflet he distributed, that Masons regard the name of God as J...n. For the benefit of those readers who are Royal Arch Masons who would not appreciate seeing that name in print, I must add that the British newspapers had no qualms in not only printing it, but gave an extraordinary explanation of it's meaning!
Things came to a head with the publication of a book by a Mr. Stephen Knight, author of "The Brotherhood-The Secret World of Freemasonry." According to the author more than 60 per cent of all police chiefs in Britain are Freemasons. He also alleges that the KGB has used Freemasonry for it's espionage activities, and that the late Sir. Roger Hollis, MI5 director between 1956 and 1965, thought by many to have been a Soviet spy, had become one of their most successful operatives, partly as a result of his membership in Freemasonry. The book also considered the influence of Freemasonry in the police, the law, areas of government and the Civil service, the City and royalty.
At the Annual Investiture of Grand Lodge, the M.W. the Grand Master the Duke of Kent gave a stirring address. Space does not permit the whole address given at that meeting in April of '84. however, a brief summary is appropriate. The Grand Master acknowledged the present problems, that of the police and the publication of Mr. Knight's book. One of his comments is worth quoting in regard to the Press, "Our response was, in the traditional manner, to be largely unresponsive. This may have temporarily dampened the delight which the media seems to take in Mason-bashing-and it is remarkable how resolute but courteous refusal dampens debate-but I am beginning to wonder whether our stonewalling attitude is necessarily the best interests of the Craft". He continued by suggesting what could be said to the public, and warned that it would certainly help if the phrase "Freemasonry is my religion", is never uttered again. "I can think of no other words more likely to give a false impression of the Craft".
In June of the same year, at the Quarterly Communication of Grand Lodge, the President of the Board of General Purposes addressed the situation by suggesting that members confronted with reprisal in the workplace, explain the nature of Freemasonry and the duties of a Freemason with respect to public activities. The next month in Birmingham in the north of England, the City councils launched an investigation of their own into alleged influences within their ranks. They set up a 'register' for Masons to 'reveal' their affiliation, and passed a resolution 'that membership of masonic lodges may be contrary to the established policies of the council".
Events came to a head in August and September, when both New Scotland Yard and the Grand Lodge of England's Board of General purposes issued respective proclamations. The Metropolitan Police stated that they intended issuing a policy statement with regard to Freemasonry, which would be included in their Handbook for Professional Behavior. The upshot of this Guidance is that an officer who is considering becoming a Freemason would be well advised not to do so, and that an officer who is already a Freemason should consider whether he should continue his membership.
The President of the Board of General Purposes disclosed that in light of the recent events, they would be issuing a leaflet explaining "in the simplest of terms" the nature of Freemasonry. New Scotland yard prior to reaching their decision, had collaborated with the Government and the British Home Office. Allegations that Freemasonry is widespread in the legal profession and could influence judicial appointments was rejected by Lord Hailsham, the Lord Chancellor, who made it clear that neither he or any of his staff belonged to the Craft.
The Provincial Grand Masters were briefed on the matters of the media and the police. In a statement issued by the Pro. G.M. of Hampshire and the Isle of Wight to district lodges, in reference to the media he said. "Television and radio people are professional interviewers; Masonic spokesmen are not". Invitations to debate or be interviewed on T.V. or radio should be declined politely. National press should be referred to Grand Lodge and local to Provincial Grand Lodge. The M.W. Pro. Grand Master added that, "There is no incompatibility between Freemasonry and the police service. The principles of Freemasonry should indeed improve the quality of a Freemason's discharge of his public and private responsibilities whatever they may be....Freemasons duty as citizens - and even more if they are also police officers - must prevail".
Since then, in conversation with the M.W.Pro.Grand Master, the Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police has said, "That there was no question of Freemasons in the Metropolitan force being asked to resign, and that their promotion in the force would continue to be on merit and unaffected by their membership in the Craft".
The long awaited leaflet explaining the "aims and relationship" of the Craft, was issued by the United Grand Lodge of England in October, 1984, intended not to be a hand-out but to be used as an aid when explaining the nature and principles of the Craft, to those genuinely interested. How long this will keep the "media-wolves" from the door is anyone's guess. Unfortunately, there will always be those who bring discredit to any organization they join, it is left to us to "admonish with friendship, and reprehend with mercy."
The writer did not attempt to pinpoint Great Britain as a hot-bed of Masonic impropriety. Some of you may have been shocked at the disturbing chain of events, as Freemasons, we should be. Perhaps we should look at our selves and those who wish to join, with a more discerning eye. At one time or another we have all heard, as Freemasons, and as the M.W. the Grand Master reminded his audience, "we emphatically do not mean using Masonic connections for personal gain or preferment".
Masonic law can only govern those within its ranks, either by suspension or expulsion. For those who choose to engage in criminal activities and thereby recriminate the Order, Freemasonry can do very little. Universally, all Freemasons are taught the same principles and code of ethics, even those who fall into disrepute. It would be grossly unfair to hold Freemasonry responsible guilt by association - by censuring all under it's banner. This article was not meant to be a defense of Freemasonry, but one which I feel might bring to light, that which we choose to ignore, (abuse of the Craft). I can only hope that future vigilance by all of us, will keep these undesirables in check, and should they escape the arms of the Civil law, their crimes against their fellow man shall not go unnoticed by the All-seeing Eve.
Investigate Freemasonry ?
The Church of England's General Synod has voted to investigate Freemasonry a benevolent society with secret rituals which has existed in England for several centuries, and has numbered bishops, even archbishops, among its members. The investigation will be to determine if Masonic beliefs and practices are compatible with Christianity. British Methodists recently approved a similar investigation. The Roman Catholic Church calls Freemasonry and Christianity "essentially incompatible" and bars Roman Catholics from membership at the risk of excommunication even though under its new Code of Canon Law, excommunication is at diocesan bishops' discretion.
by Alvin Lee Bowler
My interest was attracted to a small item in the April 1985 issue of the "Episcopalian," telling that the Church of England has voted to investigate Freemasonry and determine if it is or is not compatible with Christianity.
I think it is as logical for the United Auto Workers Union to investigate the Womans Christian Temperance Union as for the Established Church of England to begin an investigation of Masonry after it has been active openly, in its present form in England since 1717.
What are said to be the religious objections which can be made in regard to the Lodge? The objections sometimes made allude to Secrecy, Oath-taking, Teaching Religion without Official Church approval, and the alleged survival of pre-christian ritual and esoteric doctrines within the Lodges.
Recent history has shown us the persecution of Masonry by Fascist and Communist Governments. We also recall former persecutions by the "Inquisitions" of the Roman Church.
We might also ask what type of churches currently object to Lodges? The answer is that churches which have established a strict orthodoxy (the Our Way is the Only Right Way type) such as the Romans, some factions of Lutherans, most Pentecostals, and scattered small groups of ultra-fundamentalist.
Thus we see that the objection to Lodge is made by governments and churches who wish all people to conform to a dogmatic thought pattern.
When operating under a hostile environment the secrecy and oaths are necessary to prevent destruction of the Lodge. While in a free system the "Secrecy" is but a historical survival and reminder of the roots of the Order.
The Lodge has never claimed to be a "church," yet it is true that no atheist can be a Mason, and that the rituals have a religious basis. The main religious teaching which I have found in the Lodge is that mankind is responsible to God for their actions, more than for the forms of doctrines believed. We cannot expect churches who teach that one cannot be saved without assent to a certain form of doctrine to agree with the feelings of Masonry in this matter.
Are there pre-christian survivals and esoteric ideas in Masonry? Yes! Masonry does not teach that all thought before the coming of Christ was evil and to be shunned. If we find a good thought in pagan writing or an impressive ritual which teaches a important lesson, we will use it even if it comes to us from the religion of Isis and Osirus. But we do not feel that we become pagans or "worshippers of demons" by doing so.
One more modern objection to the present situation in Masonry is the apparent survival of racial segregation in American Lodges. There are many fine points, and hair-splits of custom, cocurrent jurisdiction, and Masonic Jurisprudence to be resolved before this issue can be settled.
The "Regular" Masonic Authorities tell us that there is no race issue involved, but claim that only one Grand Lodge can hold valid authority in any given territory. Even this idea the Lodge derived from the teaching of the Church of England, that a Bishop's territory cannot lawfully be infringed upon by another Bishop. In America, with Roman, Anglican, several different Ethnic Orthodox, and a multitude of Old Catholic Bishops claiming jurisdiction over the same geographic territory, this notion becomes a mote point. Perhaps some day it will become a mote point in Masonry also.
The other problem in modern times is the tradition that a woman must not be made a Mason. This problem also troubles the Church of England in regard to female priests. Just as some parts of the Church do make women priests, so at least one body of Masons, those called "Co-Masons" do make women Masons. Of course with "Regular" Masonry we have The Order of the Eastern Star and many other auxiliary groups designed for ladies.
But there is perhaps another reason behind official inquiries into Lodges by church authorities? I believe there is a financial motive hidden behind the religious platitudes spoken against Masonry and all other Lodges. Through the Lodges one finds that a person can draw near to God without paying for the assistance of a Seminary Trained, Highly Paid, Professional Minister. It is my perception that the real reason for attacks on and investigations of Lodges are the same as those behind attacks on small churchs, ministers not holding Accredited Degrees, (who work in secular jobs for their daily bread), and even large establishments, such as the Mormon Church who do not have a professional (i.e. Paid) clergy.
It is interesting in the history of England to see the Lodge Movement among the working class which resulted in the establishment in about 1747 of the Order of Odd Fellows. This in my opinion was caused by the fact that the Established Church of England had become so much a creature of the Aristocracy, that the working class could find neither spiritual nor material care within the Church. The Lodge Movement then sprang up to fill the void. If the Church had been doing the job which Christ had given Her, there would never have been a need among the poor for the Lodge Movement.
Perhaps rather than the Church of England investigating the Masons to see if Masonry is compatible with Christianity, someone should investigate to see if the teachings and actions (or lack of actions) of Established Christianity are compatible with the real teachings of Christ!!
Alvin Lee Baker, author of the item above is a Bishop in the Old Catholic Movement, married, father of two living daughters.
He is a Master Mason in Agency Lodge #10, Agency Missouri, with a dual membership in Weatherford, Oklahoma (Western Star #138). He is also a Knight Templar of the York Rite, a 32nd degree AASR (S.J.), and a member of the Order of the Eastern Star.
Other Fraternal Memberships include: The Independent Order of Odd Fellows, The Knights of Pythias, The Patrons of Husbandry and the Improved Order of Redmen
Alvin Lee Baker
621 N. Custer Weatherford, OK 73096
by Hubert L. Koker, MPS
This is a story of a leg - not just any leg but an artificial leg: not just anybody's artificial leg, but the artificial leg of Mexican General Santa Anna.
The story begins in Vera Cruz, Mexico. The date is December 5, 1838. French troops, occupying the city as a result of the Guerra de los Pasteles (The Pastery War), are leaving. Santa Anna, the Supreme Commander of the Mexican troops, is leading his forces in an attempt to hurry the French withdrawal. The invaders have placed a captured cannon at the end of a street to cover their embarkation. As Santa Anna gallops up the street, the cannon, which had been loaded with grape, is fired almost point blank. The General's horse is killed and he is wounded in the left hand and leg.
The leg wound proves to be quite serious, and the next day, Santa Anna's left leg is blunderingly amputated just below the knee. The work is so poorly done that he will suffer considerable pain on and off for the rest of his life.
The story continues. It is now almost ten years later. The date is April 18, 1847. We find General Santa Anna now, President of his country and fitted with an artificial leg again leading his troops against an invader; the United States.
American troops under General Winfield Scott, have landed at Vera Cruz and are now marching inland. Santa Anna, in an all-out defensive effort, has made his stand at Cerro Gordo, just east of El Encero, on the Jalapa Road. Forty cannon and eight thousand men have come together at this mountain pass to stop the Americans. Contact was made yesterday, April 17th.
Santa Anna left his camp early this morning, by carriage, for the front, and is now resting in a small clearing back of the lines.
Soldiers of the 4th Illinois Infantry, who had spent the night on an almost impassable trail, have encircled the Mexican lines and are now coming out of the woods onto the Jalapa Road. In a clearing below Company G. just a few hundred yards off the road, sets a carriage with the mules harnessed and ready to leave. Behind them they hear the roar of cannon as the captured Mexican guns are trained on their former owners. One of the carriage's mules is killed. Mexican soldiers quickly cut another mule out of the harness and procede to assist an officer to mount, just as Companies B and G charge down the hill. The officer has made his getaway and the Mexican soldiers have scattered when Private Edward Elliott of B company reaches the carriage. He jumps in. "Hey look at this," he says as he passes out a wooden leg. "Chicken," he says as he climbs out of the carriage brandishing a roasted chicken. He offers some to Lieutenant Duncan. For the second time in ten years General Santa Anna had lost his leg to invaders.
The 4th Illinois Infantry were twelve month volunteers. They stayed with the Army until they reached Jalapa then returned to New Orleans where they were mustered out.
For many years, the wooden leg was privately displayed by the solders after they returned to civilian life in lllinois. The leg was presented to the State of Illinois in 1882 and placed in the custody of The Adjutant General.
There was very little publicity about the leg during the 60 years prior to 1942. That year a resolution was adopted by the General Assembly of Illinois that as a gesture of friendship and unity, General Santa Anna's wooden leg, which was captured by IIlinois troops during the Mexican War, be returned to the Government of the Republic of Mexico. However, since a resolution is not law, the leg remained with the State of Illinois.
The leg was placed on public display in 1974 when the Illinois National Guard established a mobile history exhibit. It was exhibited in the National Guard Heritage Museum in Washington, D.C. in observance of the Bicentennial of the United States in 1976 and 1977. Currently, the wooden leg is on display in the Adjutant General's office building at Camp Lincoln in Springfield, Illinois.
Santa Anna acquired the leg while in the United States to campaign again the annexation of Texas as a state. Charles Bartlett, who operated an artificial leg business in New York City designed and built the leg which is made of light-weight cork, thinly covered with leather and varnish. It is fitted with a calfskin leather boot. A silver swivel at the ankle permits the artificial foot to move as if walking.
The Mexican commander's leg bears an identifying plate which reads
"General Santa Anna's Cork leg
Captured at the Battle of Cerro Gordo
Mexico by Private A. Waldron
1st Sargent Samuel Rhoades
2nd Sargent John M. Gill Apr. 18, 1847. All of the 4th Regiment Ills, Volunteers of the Mexican War"
General Santa Anna is known to have been a Mason and to have belonged to either the York Rite or the Scottish Rite, at times he supported both. However, at that time Masonic philosophy in Mexico was more political than moral.
Callcott, Wilfrid Hardy, Santa Anna, The Story of an Enigma Who Once Was Mexico, University of Oklahoma Press, Norman, 1936.
Private Correspondence, Military and Naval Department, State of Illinois, Camp Lincoln, Springfield, Illinois.
Operative Masons and Their Works
by Lou Baranello, MPS
Since the dawn of ancient civilisation, many forms of architecture have come into existence, each having their own unique and peculiar characteristics. Tonight's topic deals only with those Greek and Roman orders commonly known as Classical.
In the Second Degree lecture we learn of the five orders in architecture, and are told that the first three - the Ionic, Doric and Corinthian - were invented by the Greeks and that the Romans added to these two more - the Tuscan and the Composite. not being of an architectural persuasion, most of us know but little more than that which is perceived by the naked eye - the unequalled beauty of most of the forms or orders of the Classical structures. Their sheer size and mass suggest that they were intended to endure for an eternity, and except for the unfortunate intervention from time to time of supernatural forces beyond the control of man, their existence today would be an accomplished fact. Yet even though most of them have long since been lost through the ravages of time and the devastations of wars, numerous ruins remain to this day which on close examination and scrutiny reveal themselves to be specimens of works that are in excellent and near-perfect condition.
It seems a natural question then, to ask why so many of them were built. Our own nation's capital city, having as it does the greatest assemblage of Classical structures to be found in Western civilization, is by no means as dense in numbers of these buildings as were many of the ancient Greek and Roman cities. In some places, buildings were visible as far as the eye could see. Most of them were erected as government or military buildings, as libraries, sports arenas or temples to the Gods. Others were constructed to commemorate military events and victories, still others as entombments, or memorials to those rulers who wished to be remembered long after their earthly powers had evaporated into history. And then too there were the extravagant lavishments build into the spacious palaces which typified their living quarters, and also those of unlimited means or those of the nobility, who sought some form of expression to satisfy their personal ego. And last but not least, those who chose to honor their female friends for one reason or another. Such is a fairly accurate account of why they were built.
Let us now examine the question of how they were built. In those days B.C. there were only two classes of people the rich and the poor - a middle class did not exist. The elite and the government furnished the money and the poor did all the work. The granite and many fine grades of marble used in their construction were plentiful and in almost endless supply. Labor was very cheap, and time was of little consequence - consider that some buildings were forty and fifty or more years in construction.
We now turn our attention to the orders themselves - how would we distinguish one from another and what were their most notable features? Of the five, the Tuscan was the most austere, being devoid of any and all embellishment, extreme or otherwise. Next was the Doric order, slightly enhanced from the Tuscan, but with a few more adornments than the former, yet retaining simplicity as its most noted feature. The chief distinguishing characteristics of the Ionic order were the capitals which incorporated those scrolls on each side that bore such striking resemblance to rams-horns. The Corinthian order was very beautiful and ornate, representing as it did the acanthus leaves and other flowers such as olive or laurel, so intricately intertwined with each other. Its superb beauty was not to be excelled until the advent of the Composite order, which is a combination of the Corinthian and the scrolls of the Ionic, and which was so skillfully achieved by the Romans from the basic fundamentals first introduced be the Greeks.
The chief component members in a Classical structure, above the floor or foundations, consist of the base or pedestal, either or both, on which are placed the columns, these being superimposed by the entablature, which serves as one of the main lateral loadbearing members. They in turn being topped-off by the pediment at front and back, and which being of triangular form offered great strength and rigidity to the building. Columns were generally seven to ten diameters in height, the diameter being measured immediately above the base at the bottom of the column, and being also the key dimensions from which all other dimensions were related or derived. They were made in several sections, stacked on one another rather than being full height. They were also tapered slightly, increasing from top to bottom, and while some were plain, most were fluted for better appearance, having eighteen to thirty flutes, depending on the diameter of the column. Capitals varied from one to one and one-quarter diameters in height. Bases varied in height from one-half to one diameter. The entablature had proportions of one-quarter to one-sixth of the height of the columns. When pedestals were used, they varied in height from two to three diameters. Besides being pleasing to the eye, they also made it possible to use shorter columns when their height would otherwise have been excessive. Between pedestals might be found either a low wall, capped by a cornice rail, or a balustrade of form suitable to its particular order. These barriers served to separate traffic as well as offering some protection from the elements. Balustrades also served as safely features when used as rails in stair-cases, or on open balconies, and served the additional purpose of pure ornamentation when used atop buildings not having pediments. Many highway bridges have been built with guard rails on each side in the form of concrete balustrades.
Pilasters are of the same order and form as the columns with which they are used, except that they are square in cross-section instead of round, and are seldom fluted. They generally do not stand alone but usually protrude from their walls a distance of one-third to one-half their width. If they are freestanding, they are then known as pillars.
There are many more aspects and details of Classical architecture far too numerous to be presented in this paper. In passing, to give the Romans their just due, it should be said here that even though Greek technology preceded theirs, the Romans revolutionised the entire art by their valuable contributions of such developments as the pedestal, the arch, and the dome - none of which were present in Greek architecture. These developments have given us such examples as the Roman Coliseum, other sports arenas and amphi-theatres, Roman aqueducts and all of the domed structures throughout Europe and England and other parts of the world. This influence has continued in one form or another through the period of the Crusades, Medieval, later French and Italian Renaissance, Beaux Arts, Romanesque and other periods, some of which have been constructed as recently as the early part of this century.
by Allen E. Roberts, FPS
PROFESSIONAL FREEMASON NEEDED. Successful candidate must be knowledgeable concerning Masonic law for this jurisdiction, must have a reasonable concept of the ritual; must be Masonically well-read; must be a diplomat and able to get along with the leadership, must be able to teach Masonic subjects and develop leaders, so a Mason who is self-taught is preferred as he will be expected to establish the criteria for teaching. Should be a Past Master or one who has held a higher position. Has to be willing to travel constantly throughout this jurisdiction and stay in the field for days at a time. Will be expected to work every weekend and 80 to 120 hours a week, 52 weeks a year. Must have own transportation for which he will be reimbursed at 10 cents per mile, one way. The per diem while in the field will not exceed $10 per day. The salary will be commensurate with his years of experience as a Mason and manager, but will not exceed $3,000 per annum. Take advantage of this opportunity to be of service to the Craft.
This article was going to be entitled "Do We Need Professional Masons?" It has been changed because it shouldn't be a question, it must be a fact. We definitely do need "Professional" Masons. We need them to turn members into Master Masons.
The mythical helped wanted advertisement was not written wholly with "my tongue in my cheek." Of course, the "professional Mason" has an evil connotation in many quarters. No Mason is expected to reap any coin of the realm for his service for the Craft. He is expected to share his knowledge, acquired over the years, often at great expense. He should readily agree to travel hundreds of miles to deliver a 20 to 30 minute address which he has spent days preparing, without being reimbursed even for his out-of-pocket expenses. Forget an honorarium!
Not too long ago I traveled several hundred miles to speak at an assembly. While there I was present when several officers complained because $100 was going to be paid to a non-Mason who was one of the speakers. It was pointed out that dozens of Masons would have been happy to do it for nothing. The complainers didn't take into consideration that no one else could have made the same presentation as did the fellow who traveled a couple of hundred miles to be there.
There have been, and still are, many men serving on Grand Lodge committees and never reimbursed for any expenses, not even travel and lodging. On a personal note, for over thirty years I've written books for and about Freemasonry. For over fifteen years I've produced motion pictures for and about Freemasonry. There are many who sneeringly term me a "professional Mason.' Ha! I've netted from my books and films over that whole period less than a Grand Secretary makes in one year. Thank goodness I'm a professional manager in the business world or my family would have starved years ago.
Many of the most respected and admired Freemasons were, and are, "professional Masons." An example is Harry Carr of England who recently died. If you think on this subject for a few moments you can name at least a dozen more. Yet, we should thank God for them. Imagine where our Craft would be today without them.
Someday, I hope, we'll be reading advertisements for Professional Freemasons. They are desperately needed, desperately needed. But they must be paid a living wage so then can devote full time to working for the Craft. It's impossible for any man to give the time necessary to the needs of Freemasonry who must make a living in another field. Contrary to what most believe, it takes time, money, experience and hard work to develop programs that are viable. It can't be done piece meal. It can't be done on a part-time basis.
Too often we forget the workers in Freemasonry are volunteers. Unlike their circumstances in the "outer-world" they don't have to do anything for the Craft. And thousands never do. But I've always believed, and still do, that hundreds among those thousands would gladly serve under the right conditions.
What are the right conditions? Take another look at the advertisement. That's a glaring statement of the wrong conditions. Our volunteers are expected to give up their weekends throughout the year to serve. If their expenses are reimbursed it's close to the ridiculous figures noted. Too often they are expected to be "self-taught" mainly because there are few who know how to teach them.
During the question period after I had stopped talking at an assembly last summer, it was suggested by Harold Elliott, II, MPS, that we stop rushing men through the "degree mill." The reasoning behind this was to teach them the "basics" of Masonry. I asked this PGM from New Jersey who would do the teaching while they were waiting. With his usual wit he said: "I don't know, but there's you and me."
The right condition for the making of Master Masons is to provide enlightened leadership. This is recognised far and wide. We're constantly hearing the cry to develop leadership. But for the most part that's all it is, a cry. We're not putting our words into action. Why? Is it because the leadership really doesn't want leaders? Is it because we don't want the status quo to really change?
Within the lecture I gave at the first Assembly and Feast for The Philalethes Society I claimed the ritualists have always controlled the Craft. The leadership of the Fraternity has almost without exception come from these ritualists. And I claimed they are not about to give up their control by developing leaders outside their ranks. I have seen nothing since then to change my opinion. If anything, I've seen my opinion bolstered.
Those familiar with the "Peter Principle" know that all of us finally reach our level of incompetentcy. A good salesman doesn't necessarily make a good sales manager. An adequate attorney doesn't always make a good politician. An outstanding engineer seldom makes a good administrative officer. So it is with an excellent ritualist. Most of them make horrible administrators.
So, what's the answer? to get back to the "basics" we hear so much about but rarely see. These basics are found in Anderson's Constitutions. These Constitutions are outlined in Key To Freemasonry's Growth: "Officers must be chosen by merit, not by seniority or favoritism .... Masons must perform honest work; Masters must pay just wages; envy of a Brother is forbidden; supplanting a Brother in his work is not allowed; Wardens must be true to the Master and Brothers must obey them; young Brothers shall be instructed to continue practicing Brotherly Love; Grand Lodge must approve working tools."
Doesn't this give us the basics of Freemasonry? Doesn't every Grand Lodge still adhere to the Constitutions as outlined by Dr. James Anderson as printed in 1723? Shouldn't we learn and follow these Constitutions?
If we'll stop giving lip service to the Constitutions, the tenets and precepts of Freemasonry and put our words into action the Craft will rebound. We'll develop the leaders we must have. We'll find the "professional" Masons we need to lead us triumphantly into the Twenty-First Century.
HOW TO FORM A CHAPTER
We've made it easy to form a Chapter of The Philalethes Society. Here's all you have to do:
Five Master Masons, at least one of whom is a current member of the Society, must sign a letter requesting a Dispensation from the President (see his address on the inside cover). If they aren't members of the Society they must fill in an application and send it to the Acting Executive Secretary along with the proper fees ($10 dues for the current year or part thereof, plus $5.00 joining fee, total $15).
The letter requesting the Dispensation should also have the proposed name of the Chapter and the suggested name for the President, Vice President and Secretary/Treasurer. There is a $10 fee for the Dispensation. Include this with your letter.
That's all there is to it. The President will immediately send along a Dispensation. He'll include the Society's Bylaws covering Chapters so you can obtain a Charter. If you need suggested bylaws for your Chapter, let him know and he'll include it with the Dispensation.
Let's put at least one Chapter in every state, Canadian Province, and free country. It will be good for Freemasonry in general and your group in particular.
The certificate of literature for
the year of 1984 was won by
Dr. Wallace McLeod
of Toronto, Ontario, Canada
The Blue Friar for the year
Louis L. Williams
of Bloomington, Illinois
The Pursuit of Truth
by Willard F. Bond, Jr., MPS
As we open and close our Royal Arch Chapters we are constantly reminded that the great object of all Masonic study is the pursuit of Truth. And we are further admonished that the pursuit of Truth requires the courage of a lion, the patience of an ox, the intelligence of a man, and the swiftness of an eagle. So the purpose of this paper is to briefly consider some of the aspects of that scarce commodity. Truth, and its pursuit.
"Truth," said King Darius, "is a Divine attribute and the foundation of every virtue."
"And ye shall know the Truth," says the Book of Life, "and the Truth shall make you free."
Truth is a scarce commodity today because the world around us is filled to overflowing with untruth or error. Since Truth is of Divine origin, error is obviously of human origin. We can never be completely free of error since perfection is not given to man in this world. Error is man's greatest foe because there is so much of it in circulation.
Witnesses in court cases take a solemn oath to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. yet any judge will tell you the most common crime today is perjury, or lying under oath. Under our system of jurisprudence a jury panel of 12 people decides which side is lying. Just a few years ago, the President of the greatest nation on earth had to resign because he was caught lying in public.
Untruth or error is the opposite of Truth, and it takes many forms. Sometimes it is called tact or diplomacy. When a wife asks "How do you like my new hat, honey?" no thinking husband says "It looks like Hell!" although it usually does. In order to feel a little more respectable though, we call this type of error a "white" lie, but it is still and untruth.
Another type of error arises because people are careless. "All men err," the Pilgrim Penitent is admonished, "and erring need repentance." Everyone makes mistakes which is why they put erasers on pencils and rubber mats under spittoons!
When this building was erected in the late 1940's, the Lodge got a list of its past Masters from the Grand Lodge, and placed it inside the cornerstone. But the list was wrong, because a careless person had filed the annual report from another lodge in this lodge's folder in the Grand Lodge office. The typist didn't notice the difference, and the Grand Secretary was too busy to check the list against the annual reports himself. So our cornerstone contains the name of an alien Past Master for future ages to puzzle over. Worshipful Brother A.J. Fryer was never even a member of the Aiken Lodge. He was the Master of Flintville Lodge No. 158 in Evergreen, S.C., nearly 100 years ago. Even the Great Ones occasionally err.
The human proclivity for exaggeration also results in error. An example of this can be found in the Annual Proceedings of our Grand Lodge. Now if the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth are to be found anywhere in print, we would certainly expect to find such in our Grand Lodge Proceedings. But look at the title page, "Proceedings," it reads, "of the Two Hundred Forty-Seventh Annual Communication of the Most Worshipful Grand Lodge of Ancient Free Masons of South Carolina."
It is a matter of record, with which no one disagrees, that the Grand Lodge of Ancient Free Masons of South Carolina was formed in 1817 by the union of the Grand Lodge of Ancient York Masons and the Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons, both of whom declared themselves dissolved. So how in the world can a 167 year old Grand Lodge have had 247 Annual Communications? Error crops up in the strangest places.
Most men, I suppose, never outgrow the small boy bragging syndrome. You know how it goes - "My papa can whip your papa," "My Grand Lodge is older than your Grand Lodge." etc.
Some errors develop progressively. Like in the Royal Arch Degree when one says "Is not this Aaron's Rod?" the next one says "It appears to be Aaron's Rod," and the third character says "This is Aaron's Rod." One suggests, another agrees, and still another makes the error. In this case, of course, the error is subsequently corrected, but this is not always the case.
A lodge in another part of the state went defunct several generations ago and turned in its charter to the Grand Lodge. When the Lodge was revived several years later, it was erroneously sent a much older charter which was illegible except for the date, which had been issued originally to an entirely different lodge. So the lodge had a photostat made and stashed the wrong charter away in a safety deposit box. Then years later they built a new lodge hall and proudly put the wrong date on the cornerstone, where it still is. Thus error compounds error, ad infinitum. One error leads to another, just as one little "white" lie may require two or three big black lies to cover it adequately.
Even our rituals and aids to memory are not immune to error. Several years ago someone pulled the book on me at a York Rite instructional meeting. You should have seen the roomful of open mouths when I flatly said: "The book is wrong!" Such is the power of the printed page over the minds of men!
Even our Ahiman Rezon occasionally has an error. Sometime after 1913 someone substituted the word "other" for the word "rather" in the lecture on the 3rd degree working tools where it says "among whom no contention should ever arise, except that noble contention, or rather emulation, as to who can best work and who best agree," so several generations of Masons learned the lecture incorrectly before this obvious error was finally corrected.
The fellowcraft is admonished to overcome error, man's greatest foe, by the use of logic, but logic often leads to error because it requires the use of reason by fallible human beings. There are two principle types of reasoning, by the way Deductive reasoning begins with an established principle, which is applied to specific cases. An example would be the major premise that when you buy a used car, you may be buying someone elses problem. From this you can deduce that you may have some problems if you buy a particular used car. Inductive reasoning is a little more complex, because you start with several cases and arrive at a general conclusion. The owner of several old Fords observed that they were all continually breaking down and requiring repair, so by inductive reasoning he concluded that all old Fords continually break down and require repair.
A visitor observed two churches of the same denomination standing side by side way out in the backwoods and asked why there were two churches. "Those folks over there," he was informed "believe that Pharaoh’s daughter found little Moses in the bullrushes. We folks over here believe that's just what she said!"
Nowhere is error more prevalent than in the so-called histories of Freemasonry, most of which are merely histories of the various Grand Lodges. All of them are different, because each one is has storm In other words, "that's just what he says!"
Dr. James Anderson in his Constitutions of 1723 and 1738 equated Masonry and Geometry, and concluded that God had obviously equipped Adam with a knowledge of Masonry and Geometry in his heart when he created him. Adam taught this to his son. Cain, who was the first builder of record. Dr. Anderson included all of the great builders of antiquity as geometricians, and hence Masons. Dr. Anderson also erroneously credited Phythagoras with saying "Eureka!" All of you scholars know that it was Archimedes who said "Eureka" first, not the great Phythagoras.
One hundred years later, Dr. George Oliver, who has been laughed at and discredited by most of his successors, developed his history in a logical manner. He first defined Masonry as being identical with Christianity, since in his day all English Masons were Christians, and since Masonry inculcated the practice of the Christian virtues. He then concluded that, since the Scriptures inform us that "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God," Masonry and Christianity obviously began with the creation of the world, and that Adam, Abraham, and Moses, all of whom were godly men, were also Christians, and hence Masons, because God had obviously made them such.
Many of our modern Masonic writers take the point of view that if there is no written record, then it just didn't ever happen. This approach is almost as far-fetched as Dr. Oliver's, since written records are still being brought to light periodically, and lots of things happened that weren't written down. And lots of old records were deliberately or accidentally destroyed.
The Egyptian heiroglyphics were undecipherable until the Rosetta Stone was discovered by Napoleon's soldiers in 1799, and deciphered by Champollion in 1822. The Dead Sea Scrolls, which probably assisted in the education of John the Baptist and Jesus Christ himself, were discovered about 30 or 40 years ago. All of the Babylonian manuscripts were gathered by Alexander the Great and placed in the library in Alexandria in Egypt. Some of them were translated into Greek, but the rest of them were destroyed when the library burned.
Some of the records of the oldest known civilisation on earth, the Sumerians, were unearthed less than a hundred years ago, and are still being deciphered. I read in the newspaper only last week that the first volume of a Sumerian dictionary has now been published, consisting only of the letter "B." The complete dictionary will be finished in about fifty years. Archeologists have now unearthed approximately one million clay tablets with cuneiform in criptions in the Sumerian language, which preceded that of the Chaldees at Babylon by a few thousand years.
Some scholars hold the view that Masonry was invented by a small group of people in fairly recent times, but this viewpoint is equally faulty. These people are considering only the organization of the so-called "Mother" Grand Lodge. Masonry as a speculative science was in existence for a long time before the Grand Lodge system was begun in 1717.
Even Dr. Albert Gallatin Mackey's History of Freemasonry in South Carolina is not without a few errors. For instance, he says that the first Masonic Lodge meeting in South Carolina occurred on October 28, 1736, because the local newspaper said it was the first meeting. But there had to be at least one previous meeting to apply for the Charter which was issued in 1735, since only a few years before the English Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons had instituted a rule that no charters would be issued without a request for the same. Mackey also states that Solomon's Lodge No. 1 participated in the organisation of the Grand Lodge of Ancient Free Masons of South Carolina in 1817, but in another place he relates how the last member of Solomon's Lodge turned in the charter in 1811, and states that the lodge was defunct until revived some thirty years later.
There are even a couple of errors in Bond's History of the Aiken Lodge, but I'm not going to tell what they are.
Not all modern Masonic scholars subscribe to the theory that Freemasonry was invented by a few 18th Century intellectuals. Brother F. deP. Casters published the results of his many years of patient inquiry into things Masonic only 24 years ago. He opines that, while the symbolic degrees may have arisen during the 17th and 18th centuries in England, they were spin-off from the Holy Royal Arch, a much older degree for those who had been inducted into the Chair. He develops the theme that the Holy Royal Arch goes back to ancient Babylon, where "language was confounded and Masonry lost," that it was nurtured and spread over the Mediterranean world by the Jewish Kabbalists, who brought it to Holland and England when the Jews were run out of Spain around the end of the 15th century. As proof he offers the Jewish nature of both the Symbolic and Capitular degrees themselves, the fact the J, B, and O were associated together as the names of the three principal dieties at only one period of time in Babylon, the undoubted antiquity of the Royal Arch itself, and many other bits and pieces of evidence. He points out that there is a record of some Spanish Jews from Holland emigrating in 1658 to Rhode Island, where following services in the Synagogue, they conferred Masonic degrees on some of their number. When Kadoshlavah Chapter was started here in Aiken in 1874, all of the degree work was invariably performed on Sunday, since it was considered to be the Holy Royal Arch. And if your Chapter is over 100 years old you will probably find that its first meetings were held on Sunday. The author cites a great many references, but read the book for yourself.
So far as I am concerned, Masonry is purely and simply a way of life, based on the accumulated wisdom of the human race and a knowledge of the eternal verities discovered and preserved by the great, the good, and the wise of all the generations that have lived on the earth. It is far too complex, too comprehensive, and too cohesive to be the product of just a few men at one given time.
When Masonry is defined in this fashion, then Drs. Anderson and Oliver begin to make a little more sense. In fact, they make as much sense as many of their detractors.
So, surrounded by a vast sea of error, what can we who are engaged in the pursuit of Truth do? The worst thing we can do is to do nothing. Here are some guidelines:
1. The Great Apostle wrote Timothy to "Study to show yourself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the afford of Truth," The important word in this advice is "study." Read as many books as you can on Masonic subjects. The author of each book has read many, many books on Masonic subjects, so you get the benefit of what he has read, in addition to his opinions.
2. Brother Benjamin Franklin advised us to believe nothing that we hear and only half of what we see. Every winter is prejudiced to his own point of view, so the important thing to us is to keep an open mind when we read anything, and to try to distinguish between fact and fancy.
3. Every statement of fact should be supported by proof of some sort. It may be indicated by a footnote or by direct reference to its source. The most important part of any scholarly paper is its bibliography. Unsupported statements such as the statement "Mackey is unreliable," have got to be another Case of "his story." (This is a pun - I once heard Jim Case say that Mackey is hard to believe.)
4. Don't be too quick to entirely disregard the oral tradition and the old legends. They have endured for hundreds and thousands of years. Remember that the four Gospels: Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John were originally oral testimony, and were reduced to writing only because the writers knew that death would eventually silence them forever, and what they had seen and heard would be lost forever unless they wrote it all down.
5. You can learn something from anyone, if you will just take the time to read or listen to what he has to say. And what you learn may surprise you.
The funeral of the late Johnny Jones was being held in a rural Church, and the Church was filled with his friends and relatives. A few years before, Johnny had moved out to Texas, but his body had been shipped back home to South Carolina for burial. His friends and relatives didn't know it, but Johnny had frozen to death while sitting under a tree. So the Texas undertaker had had to jam him into the casket in order to close the lid. So you can guess what happened next. When the casket was opened, to give his friends and relatives a last look at Johnny, Johnny suddenly sat up. This emptied the Church in a hurry.
Two little old ladies were seated next to the door, so they got out first and ran down the road in a panic. They soon got winded and turned off the road into the bushes to rest. Peering out through the bushes, they saw a familiar figure loping past them and on down the road, with part of the window sash draped around his neck. In a shocked voice, one little old lady said to the other: "Wasn't that the preacher that just went past?" "Yes," replied the other, equally shocked. "And did you hear what he said?" "Yes " said the first little old lady, "I distinctly heard him say "Damn a Church with only one door!"
6. Finally, Brethren, geometrize. Take the facts you have stored away in your mind, organise them, and write something. If you don't, then your personal pursuit of Truth will have been for entirely selfish purposes, and the results of your labors in the Masonic Quarries will have been lost to posterity. As Brother Longfellow said:
"Let us then be up and doing,
With a heart for any fate;
Still achieving, still pursuing,
Learn to labor and wait."
Pick and Knight, The Pocket History of Freemasonry, Philosophical Library. Inc.. N.Y., 1953.
Castells, Antiquity, of the Holy Royal Arch, A. Lewis, London. 1960.
Proceedings Grand Lodge of Ancient Free Masons of S.C., 1984. Columbia, S.C.
Mackey, The History of Freemasonry in South Carolina, S.C. Steam Power Press. Cola. 1861 (1936 Reprint)
Anderson's Constitutions 1723 & 1738.
Waite, A New Encyclopedia of Freemasonry.
Weathervane Books, N.Y., 1970.
Funk & Wagnalls, Standard Reference Encyclopedia, N.Y., 1963.
PROUD OF THE PHILALETHES?
If you are (and we sure hope you're proud of it), why not tell the world? We'll have something new in July.
Beautifully enameled four-color 1 1/4" lariat (bolo) ties with gold cords at $8.00 each.
Four-color embroidered 4" patches to sew on your jacket or hat at $4.00 each.
We are considering having a four-color, l 1/4" medallion made into officers and past officers badges. These will hang by a double chain from an attractive top plate with the office inscribed thereon. The cost will be $20 each. For a small additional fee any name (other than an office) can be inscribed on the top plate. We'll have these made if there is enough interest. If you are interested, let the President know immediately.
Remember the Maine
by L.L. Walker, Jr. MPS
On the evening of the 15th of February 1898, the American battleship Maine had been at anchor in the port of Havana for twenty-two days, and every one of the 354 officers and men were thoroughly tired of the experience. The ship had been sent to Havana to protect American interests during the civil war then going on between Spain and Cuban rebels. Because of tension ashore, there had been no liberty, and only a few officers had been allowed to go into the city on ship's business.
At 9:40 that evening the long wait ended abruptly when a violent explosion tore the ship apart and she settled to the bottom of the shallow harbor. Of the ship's complement, two officers and 264 enlisted men died. The Disproportionate numbers of deaths among the enlisted personnel was due to the fact that the greatest force of the explosion was forward, three decks below the crew's quarters. Officers were berthed aft.
The commanding officer, Captain D. Sigsbee, assumed that his ship was under attack, and he later so testified. He expressed his conviction that the destruction was due to an external source.
This opinion was readily accepted, both officially and popularly. and so "Remember the Maine" became the rallying cry of patriotic Americans. The sinking proved to be a true cause celebre, and must be counted as one of the causes of this nation's shortest war - 110 days from declaration to armistice.
Parenthetically it should be remarked that modern scientific knowledge and technology have been brought to bear on the cause of the sinking. In 1975, at the direction of Admiral Hyman G. Rickover, two civilian scientists of the U.S. Navy, one an expert in the structural dynamics of ships, and the other an expert in underwater shock wave phenomona, made a detailed examination of the technical evidence preserved in Navy archives. The carefully documented conclusion was that the explosion was due to spontaneous combustion in a coal bunker immediately adjacent to one of the ship's forward magazines, the heat causing ignition of the magazine contents. Whatever the cause, American sailors died.
There is a Masonic footnote to this historic incident, for it has been stated that 83 Masons died in the tragedy. The origin of this statement, and the fact that details have never been verified from American lodge records makes for one of the minor mysteries of American Masonry.
The April 1898, issue of the Quarterly Bulletin of the Iowa Masonic Library carried an item which opened with this editorial comment: "We copy from the Mexican Herald of March 4th the following account of a Lodge of Sorrow held by the seven Lodges in the City of Mexico, working under the Gran Dieta of the Republic". The story then goes on to quote verbatim from the Mexican publication:
"Last night in obedience to a joint call issued by the Spanish Lodge Riego No. 4 and the Mexican Benito Juarez No. 3, a 'Lodge of Sorrow' was held at the Lodgerooms on Puerta Falsa de San Andries No. 14. The object of the meeting was in commemoration of the 83 Masons who were victims in the 'Maine' tragedy. The two officers who were killed. Lieutenant Jenkins and Engineer Merritt, being respectively the senior and junior wardens of the Lodge which held its regular meetings on board of the unfortunate battleship".
The Mexican article then describes the black drapes of the hall, and mentions by name the lodges represented. Among Americans present and mentioned by name were the Grand Representative of the State of New York, D. Whittemore, Z.L. Tidball, Past Grand Master of that State, and S.W. Reynolds of Massachusetts.
This must have been a solemn and beautiful occasion, remarkable in that Masons of another nation should so honor American dead. There is, however, one very troubling aspect to the entire story: The fact of a Masonic Lodge meeting aboard the Maine has never been verified. If, indeed, 83 Masons perished, it must be wondered how this fact could have been so quickly established in Mexico when it seems not to have been recognized in the United States.
More than twenty years ago the author undertook to trace the origins of the information contained in the Mexican article. His correspondent in Mexico was Brother Sam W. Clark, 33d, of Monterrey, a distinguished American Mason then active in Mexican Masonic affairs. Brother Clark went to some lengths to investigate Mexican sources, but without success. From some source he received information that Engineer Merritt was a member of Racket River Lodge No. 213, of Potsdam, New York, but his inquiry to that lodge did not confirm such membership.
An inquiry to the Library of the Grand Lodge of Iowa produced nothing more than a machine copy of the original Quarterly Bulletin article from which the foregoing quotations have been taken.
Inquiry was made of The Masonic Service Association, but nothing was found in their files, An inquiry to Brother R. Baker Harris, then Librarian of the Supreme Council, 33d, was responded to by his careful search of library files. A letter from Brother Harris stated that he had conducted his search "without finding any reference to a Lodge said to have been active aboard the USS Maine at the time of her loss in Havana harbor". He further stated: "We find a number of references to lodges associated with ships, but none relating to the USS Maine. We also checked an index of Masonic incidents in the Spanish American War".
During the two decades since, the author has from time to time returned to a consideration of the story. After this extended period of investigation and reflection, the author has arrived at two conclusions. The first is that the reasons given at the time of the call for a Lodge of Sorrow in Mexico City were incorrect, having arisen out of premature and probably misunderstood communications. The second is that the Iowa publication simply copied the story from the Mexican publication without any effort at confirmation. It will be well to consider the reasons for the conclusions thus reached.
First and most convincing is the fact that the primary sources of Masonic information in this country are unable to confirm that there was a Masonic Lodge meeting aboard the Maine.
It is reasonable to assume that, if there had been a Masonic Lodge meeting aboard a vessel of the United States Navy, such lodge would have been chartered by some one of the Grand Lodges of the United States. It is also reasonable to assume that, if any Grand Lodge had chartered such a lodge, the loss of the ship under such circumstances would have been cause for that Grand Lodge to thereafter memorialize the Lodge and its dead. No Grand Lodge has done so.
The public record indicates that only two officers were killed. The Mexican story states that they were the Senior and Junior Wardens of the Lodge. Who was the Worshipful Master? Does the fact that his name is not stated imply that he survived? One would suppose that had there been such a person and had he survived he would have been peculiarly marked for honor by the fraternity.
The story from Mexico states that 83 Masons died in the explosion. The ship's complement totaled only 354 officers and men. This would mean that nearly one-fourth of all personnel were Masons. This is an inordinately great number of Masons in any group, ship's company or otherwise. Even if the number of Masonic dead is correct, it would have been difficult, if not impossible, to establish the fact in the two weeks which intervened between the event and the Lodge of Sorrow.
In this day of instantaneous communication it is difficult for us to think of a time when it was otherwise. American awareness of the fate of the Maine depended upon Captain Sigsbee going ashore to send an unenciphered, plain language message by commercial cable to the naval base at Key West. From there it was forwarded to the Navy Department in Washington, where it was not received until more than three hours after the explosion.
A court of Inquiry was promptly appointed by Commander-in-Chief, Atlantic Fleet, but the Court did not complete its findings until March 21. It would have been impossible, therefore, for the Mexico City lodges to have had any but hearsay information when they acted.
That there was a regular chartered Masonic Lodge meeting aboard the Maine must be doubted. It may well be that there was an active club predicated upon Masonic membership ashore, and it may be that the two dead ship's officers were officers of that club. Certainly, there is no reason to doubt that they were Masons, even though the places of their membership presumably has not been proved by systematic investigation. That they were Wardens must be denied in the absence of proof that there was, indeed, a regular lodge.
Whatever questions may be raised today about the facts of the story as it appeared in print, Masonic hearts must be warmed by the spontaneous display of sorrow on the part of our Mexican brethren. We may well believe that they acted as they did, paying honor to men they had never known, solely in response to the "Mystic Tie" which binds all Masons by its fraternal bonds.
Dr. Anthony, we have a problem !
The cost of returned letters has again gone up. So has the cost of returning and changing the addresses of magazines and other printed material. We are being charged 30 cents by the post office for each magazine they are unable to deliver. This raises the cost of the Philalethes postage bill to great proportions each time they can't deliver your magazine.
We know that you just haven't thought of this. When you move, brethren, please notify us of your address change. You would be surprised how much money we can spend when an average of 200 brethren change their place of residence each time we print the magazine. We need your help!
Please send us your change of address well in advance of the time when you move. We will do our absolute best to get your change of address made, but we need your cooperation. Please let us know when you move from one location to another. A few years ago this would not have been this big a problem. The economy was such that our society was not that mobile, the price of returned letters was less than it is now. But we need all of you to keep us posted on your addresses.
Just fill out the coupon below and mail it in to the address indicated. We will do the rest. Thank you.
CHANGE OF ADDRESS FORM
Drawer 70, 1-A South Holly Ave.,
Highland Springs, VA 23075
Membership Number ______
Old Address _________________________________________
Street R.R. Box No.
City State Zip
New Address _________________________________________
Street R.R. Box No.
City State Zip
Who are the notable Freemasons in the world? Who, among our Craft, is working to keep their country great? Who are the Freemasons who are the leaders in industry the professions, the arts and the crafts? These and many other questions are difficult to answer.
But Anchor Communications headed by Allen E. Roberts, FPS, is trying to find the answers to who is doing what. The first edition of Who Is Who In Freemasonry brought us a step toward this goal. Fortunately, there will be a second edition. If the editors receive the cooperation they deserve we should be able to find all the answers.
Today's unknown, or little known, Masons will be the leaders of tomorrow. We won't know who they are unless books like Who Is Who In Freemasonry continue to be published. Even then todays leaders in the Craft must help the editors reach those who should be included in such a volume. So, let the editors know who should be contacted for a bio.
Why not contact Anchor Communications today. Ask for the forms necessary to submit YOUR biography Write. Anchor Communications, Drawer 70, Highland Springs, VA 23075.
Al Cerza Reviews Books of Interest to Masons
Dr. Wayne C. Temple, a life-long student of Abraham Lincoln, and one of the world's renowned Lincoln scholars, as well as a skilled Masonic researcher, for years has gathered facts connected with the only home owned by Lincoln which was located in Springfield, Illinois. The resulting book entitled "By Square and Compasses: The Building of Lincoln's Home and Its Saga" presents all available information about the construction, expansion, and maintenance of the home. Woven into the presentation are all Masonic connections together with biographical sketches of the occupants of the home and the contractors who had any connection with the structure. The material is amply supported by references and a detailed index prepared by Louis L. Williams. The book was published as a joint project of the Illinois Lodge of Research and the Masonic Book Club.
Available at $4.00 a copy from The Masonic Book Club. P.O. Box 1563, Bloomington, Ill. 61701.
In our December, 1984 issue there was published an extensive excerpt from an interesting book entitled "Freemasonry and American Culture, 1880-1930," written by Lynn Dumenil. The subject was explored by the author while she was working on her PhD. dissertation at the University of California, Berkeley. The thesis of the book is that these were the golden years of the Craft in the United States, and she explores the various aspects of our Fraternity. She expresses some opinions which she believes have contributed to the decline of Freemasonry. One major reason expressed by her is that Freemasonry was a select organisation with a high degree of prestige connected with its membership but that the large influx of members after World War One destroyed these elements and the Craft began to deteriorate. She states that the lack of attendance at lodge meetings is due to members being bored with the ritualistic repetition meeting after meeting. Many things stated in the book may not be accepted by some of our members, but it is refreshing to read what an outsider observes about our Craft with perception and sympathy.
Available at $30.00 a copy from Princeton University Press, Princeton, N.J. 08540.
Masonic Square is an interesting Masonic magazine, published in London, England. The December, 1984 issue has many interesting items; among them are the following articles: Grand Stewards' Lodge; Finland's Jubilee; Namesakes; Brothers of the Angle (Masonic sports group); The Emblems of Mortality; Dyes and Divers (color in Freemasonry); some book reviews: and news from around the world.
Annual subscription is $9.00 and the address of the magazine is c/o Lewis Masonic Publishers, Terminal House, Shepperton, TW17, 8AS, England.
There has been published a ninety-one page booklet entitled "A Masonic History in Northwestern Ohio, 1813-1884," written by Kenneth R. Dickson. It presents a brief history of each of the thirty-one Masonic lodges that have existed in that part of Ohio. It does not overlook the men who were leaders in each of these lodges and presents the important events in each lodge together with some interesting occurrences.
The book sheds light on some general subjects. For example, it illustrates how some lodges continued to work after the Morgan incident of 1826 and how the lodges resumed work some years later. One lodge charged $25.00 for the three degrees: one lodge had annual dues of $2.00. One lodge had 1425 members in 1929. At one time a lodge approved the payment of thirty cents for kerosene and eighty-seven cents for cheese and crackers. One lodge was divided into two lodges because some of the members wanted to work in the German language.
Available at nine dollars a copy from Masonic History. c/o Harbor Light Lodge No. 746, 3024 - 131st Street Toledo, Ohio 43611.
Volume 5 of the Transactions of The Maine Lodge of Research, covering the year 1983-1984, has been published and contains a number of interesting papers on general Masonic subjects. In addition to the formal reports of what happened at the meetings during the period, the names of the of fixers, and papers of local interest, the following subjects will be of interest to our readers: The Seal of Fidelity; Why the Right Hand?; Mason from Missouri, a sketch of Harry S. Truman: George Washington and the Constitution; The First Lodge in Louisiana; and Masonry and Templary.
Available at $5.00 a copy, from C. Weston Dash, Secretary, Shore Road, HCR 60, Box 159, Medomak, Maine 04-551.
Brother Ed. E. Stolper, a full member of Quatuor Coronati Lodge, who was born in Holland, but has resided in Italy for the past thirty years in connection with his engineering work, has written an interesting book in the Italian language entitled "Argomento Massoneria," which is liberally translated as "Explaining Masonry." It has been approved by the Grand Master of the Grand Orient of Italy as suitable for presentation to persons asking questions about Freemasonry and to new members of the Craft. The book has a definition of Freemasonry and explains briefly the history of the Craft and its philosophy and its work. It covers such diverse subjects a Freemasonry and the Ladies, the appendant groups, Freemasonry in Italy, and how the Craft spread throughout the world. It does not avoid such controversial subjects as the relationship of the Craft with religion.
Available at 12,000 Lire (a bargain if the rate of exchange is considered), from Walter Brenner, Via Trento, 8, 87100, Cosenza, Italy.
In 1735 a number of Masons who had held the office of Steward met as a lodge at one of the Feasts of the Grand Lodge of England. It was given the name Stewards' Lodge No. 117. In 1792 it was called the Grand Stewards' Lodge and placed at the head of the list of lodges. When the Union of 1813 took place the lodge remained at the head of the list but without a number. In commemoration of the 250th anniversary of the lodge Colin Dyer has written an interesting history of the lodge with the title "The Grand Stewards and Their Lodge."
At first only Grand Stewards were accepted as members but later petitions were accepted from persons who had served as lodge stewards.
The Grand Stewards occupy a special place in England since these officers plan and conduct the two annual Feasts of the Saints John. This is an interesting and unique book with a wealth of information.
Available at $27.50 from Quatuor Coronati Correspondence Circle Limited, 60 Great Queen Street, London WC2B 5BA, England. (Books by the Correspondence Circle can only be sold to members of the lodge under English taxing laws).
Through Masonic Windows
by Allan E. Roberts, FPS
Reluctantly I cleaned out several file drawers to make room for Philalethes material, among other things. In doing so I "discovered" several items I had been saving for my now defunct The Altar Light. Here are a couple of those interesting items.
* The late Harold V.B. Voorhis, FPS. wrote to James R. Case, FPS, asking for information on this item: "On or after September 1, 1939, each applicant for the degrees in Connecticut must submit...his fingerprints." Jim answered: "In 1939 our Grand Master was a Major General...He recommended that applicants...be required to be fingerprinted." The Grand Lodge agreed. The 1940 Grand Master praised the action. No mention was made of this in 1941. In 1942 this requirement was repealed.
* Harold also informed me the first Masonic magazine published in America was The Freemason's Magazine and General Miscellany. It was edited by the Reverend George Richards and published in Philadelphia. It lasted only one year. The Iowa Masonic Library has a complete set.
* For those Masonic music lovers who have written to me Harold wrote me that "Captain William S. Gilbert and Dr. Arthur S. Sullivan" were Freemasons and performed in Masonic Lodges or for Masonic functions. Both were members of the Bayard Rose Croix Chapter in England. Gilbert became a Mason in St Mochar Lodge, Aberdeen, SC. Sullivan was made a Mason in Harmony Lodge No. 255, London. Sir Michael Costa, "in his day, famous as composer and conductory was also a Freemason.
* In a note stating: "This should settle something. I still get asked about Wilson." Harold wrote in 1928 to the Secretary of Princeton Lodge No. 38 of New Jersey. He asked: "Did Woodrow Wilson ever petition your Lodge?" The answer was an emphatic "NO!" Said the Secretary: "I have many inquiries regarding President Wilson. I am prepared to answer you promptly and correctly." The question is now settled!
* Harold enclosed a picture of the "first building erected in America for Masonic purposes." It's Masons Hall, Franklin Street, Richmond, Virginia. It's not only the first, it's the oldest Masonic building in this country still being used for Masonic purposes. It's the home of Richmond Randolph Lodge No. 19 and Richmond Chapter No. 3, Royal Arch Masons. It was erected in 1785 and became the first permanent home of the Grand Lodge of Virginia.
"The Worshipful Master of Temple Lodge No. 4" Texas,"(who is also a 4th degree Knights of Columbus) raised his priest, the Rev. Fr. Roberto Flores, to the sublime degree of a Master Mason," writes Wayne Poorman. "Brother and Father Flores is currently on special assignment to the Houston Center for Immigrants, and leads the worship at St. Mark the Evangelist Catholic Church. Brother Flores stated that his grandfather was a Master Mason and that he can find no conflict between his faith and the Masonic Fraternity." Isn't it good to be able to report something positive taking place toward the Brotherhood of Man Under the Fatherhood of God?
Adapted from the "Clan Scott Newsletter":
B - Be a working, supporting member
E - Encourage other members to become involved Master Masons
L- Learn about your Masonic heritage and pass it along to others
O- Organize and work for your Lodge, Grand Lodge and Philalethes
N- Nurture the gift of your Masonic heritage: help others
G- Get involved! Become a part of the "cliche"
Koillskulma is a well produced publication of the Grand Lodge of Finland. Unfortunately I can't interpret Finnish, but the one page digest, printed in English, describes what's featured in the periodical. I sure wish I could have read the three part "series on Freemasons in Leo Tolstoi's novel, War and Peace. 'The Essay on Freemasonry, authored by a woman journalist and the Editor-in-Chief of a significant regional newspaper and published in the same paper," and who "Takes a positive standing to Freemasonry" and who is "seemingly well-informed in her subject," should be worth reading. I've written to the Grand Secretary hoping I can obtain a translations these. If so, I'll Pass this along to you.
The Kansas Mason informs us that the then Grand Master is pleased with the results of his suggestions to bring Freemasonry into the communities. Where tried, "Fraternal Nights" that included all bodies, were highly successful. He was extremely pleased, and rightly so, with the success of the "Kansas All-Masonic Marching Band which made its debut at the East-West Shrine Football Game last August." He said: Ninety-eight lodges and appendant bodies participated in this endeavor.
Along with his many friends throughout the Masonic World, we mourn the untimely death of Harvey R. Hanson, MPS, the long-time Grand Secretary of the Grand Lodge of Minnesota. He fought the dread disease, cancer, for over a year. He will be missed. We congratulate Raymond E. Schlemmer, former Grand Treasurer, for taking over Harvey's important assignment.
The General Grand Chapter, Royal Arch Masons, International, elected Dr. Walter H. Winchester, MPS, General Grand High Priest, in September. It awarded its gold medal to Roy Rogers, Clarence K. Jones and Herbert D. Sledd. It's good to note many of the elected and appointed officers are members of the Philalethes, including the long-time General Grand Secretary, Charles R.A. McGaughey, FPS.
The excellent Northern Light notes two historic events: The magazine has now been serving the Northern Jurisdiction of the Scottish Rite for 15 years; and the Grand Commander, Stanley F. Maxwell, justly notes the vibrant growth of the Scottish Rite Museum of Our National Heritage. If you haven't visited this living monument to Freemasonry, you should.
When will some of our appendant bodies learn that they come under the jurisdiction of their Grand Lodge? Many of them have disregarded Masonic law for years and gotten away with it because of Grand Masters who have turned their heads the other way. Or, perhaps, it's because they haven't wanted to make waves. Not so C.C. Faulkner Jr., of Indiana. In an item entitled "We'd Be Better Off Without Them," appearing in The Indiana Freemason, he writes: "There exists within our Fraternity a problem that is a dreaded cancer. ..There are men who have been permitted to join our ranks who engage in activities, in the name of segments of our Fraternity who thereby inflict upon Freemasonry public and private disgrace. It is this Grand Master's opinion that where those men are concerned, even though they inflate our membership numbers, we'd be better off without them." He had learned that two separate appendant bodies had been sued for carrying on illegal gambling activities. He issued a strongly worded edict prohibiting "all forms of gambling." He noted: "organisations that predicate their membership upon membership in a Masonic organisation are required to abide by the same high standards that are required of Lodges and other Masonic organizations upon which they depend for their existence. Lodges cannot and will not be treated more harshly than the 'side' organisations whose existence they make possible." Bravo!