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Friday, August 04, 2017

George Washington's Master Mason Degree 264 Years Ago


“To enlarge the sphere of social happiness is worthy of the benevolent design of a Masonic institution; and it is most fervently to be wished, that the conduct of every member of the fraternity, as well as those publications, that discover the principles which actuate them, may tend to convince mankind that the grand object of Masonry is to promote the happiness of the human race.”- George Washington, letter to the Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, January 1793
My own brother Tom told me that Fox News Channel's Shepard Smith wrapped up his afternoon news hour broadcast by observing that today is the anniversary of George Washington becoming a Master Mason in Virginia's Fredericksburg Lodge 4. It is indeed: it was 264 years ago, on August 4th, 1753. Washington was initiated as an Entered Apprentice on November 4, 1752, and passed to the degree of Fellow Craft on March 3, 1753.

The lodge at Fredericksburg was first established in the early autumn before in 1752 and was made up of mostly Scottish immigrants and merchants. It was self-created at the time—the lodge’s first secretary, Daniel Campbell, would finally get around to getting a charter from the Grand Lodge of Scotland in July 1758. At its birth, the lodge met in a variety of places, but mostly the tavern's upstairs private meeting room. After the formation of the Grand Lodge Virginia, the lodge was re-chartered as Fredericksburg Lodge 4 on January 30, 1787. More than 200 years ago, they built the historic building in which they currently meet to this day.

For George's entire Masonic record and list of his other noteworthy activities related to the fraternity, Mark Tabbert has made an exhaustive list on the website of the George Washington National Masonic Memorial.

Thanks for the reminder, Shep.

1 comment:

  1. One cannot imagine a grand master intervening in a lodge if Washington was presiding.

    ReplyDelete

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