George Washington’s Influence

To masons across the United States, a single name brings a feeling of pride, respect, and even reverential awe when that name is spoken. George Washington was a mason, which can be confirmed by historical and masonic texts and records. It is not a secret that Washington promoted masonic ideals in his interactions with his military soldiers and officers. It is also no secret that many of his officers and soldiers under his command, and elsewhere in the Continental Army were masons as well. Why was this? Why did General Washington encourage and promote Freemasonry to those serving in the Continental Army? Washington promoted Freemasonry to those serving in the Continental Army to bring order, morality, loyalty, leadership skills, trustworthiness, the ability to rise beyond one’s social standing, and unity to this collection of men from all walks of life and all over the colonies into one unified form; that would not only influence the outcome of the Revolutionary War, but ultimately influence the new nation.
To better understand Washington’s masonic influence in the Continental Army, we first need to quickly examine the status of Freemasonry in the American Colonies, focusing upon military detachments. From the time when Freemasonry arrived to the American Colonies, small local lodges formed in different locations. Men from those locations joined the fraternity. A slight problem arose when prior to the Revolution, many masons served in the British Army and were away from their home lodge. Also other members of the army wished to join the fraternity, but being a member of the military made it quite difficult to associate with one local lodge. So military lodges were formed and chartered starting in 1732. These lodges serviced those in the military and were sanctioned to be mobile; in other words able to move about with their respective military detachments, etc. We get a picture of just how important these military lodges were to the men, “these lodges were a fruitful source of maintaining Masonic unity with military groups and helped spread the ideas of the Craft throughout the world.” Military lodges spread throughout the British Army and included men that were British, American, Christian, non-Christian, and from different social stations. The Craft’s ideals of unity and brotherhood allowed men from all walks, within the military, to join and better themselves. Not only that, there was a growing need that these men had, which also influenced the growth of Freemasonry in pre-Revolutionary America.
With the number of masons within the military ever increasing, the importance of Freemasonry became more apparent to these men working and fighting together. This importance, “beginning in the middle of the eighteenth century, a growing number of working men, outside the elite, joined a new and more democratic…variant of the fraternity and directed it toward an embrace of the republican ideals of the new American society…military lodges more than Protestant chaplains knit together the officers of the Continental Army.” This form of the Craft overlooked whether a man came from aristocratic origins, was a new man/gentleman, or a common labourer from any of the colonies. During this period George Washington became a mason. Masonic records tell us that during the years of 1752 and 1753 that George Washington received his Entered Apprentice, and was raised a Master Mason in 1753 at the Fredericksburg Lodge. Initially Washington did not join a military lodge, but we can safely assume he did and was active as much as he could during his military career and the war. Detailed military lodge records did not survive the war, got lost overtime, or were not well kept to offer us definitive membership lists. Washington did not come from aristocratic society, he was a son of a colonist. In the eyes of British aristocracy, this status placed one. British society never let you forget your station in society. Nevertheless George Washington did not let this social status hinder him, for he did rise in the ranks of Virginian society to that of a Gentleman. He conducted himself the way a Gentleman did during this period. With societal rules of conduct and the tenants of masonry guiding his life, Washington found himself in the position to forever influence those around him, and very likely the way the fraternity in America would evolve.
Military men had the general reputation of not behaving like a gentleman. People expected military men to be crude, drunk, profane, and even unmasonic in character. As a member of the Continental Army, George Washington, “did not achieve a reputation for military genius but he did achieve a reputation for valor and courage and rapport with the men of his unit.” Along with this, “Washington served his country without pay, asking only for payment of his expenses. He encountered many hardships and difficulties because everyone did not support the Revolution. Many remained loyal to England, making it difficult to maintain enough men to staff the army. Washington was able to hold the army together by the moral strength of his character by which he commanded their esteem and loyalty.” The Revolution tested the resolve not only for the revolutionary colonists, but also the resolve of those who joined the fight in the army. Those men who joined the fight came from all over the colonies and had various backgrounds from social status and even religious beliefs. Here we can see the influence of Washington’s character and masonic values along with the military lodges gaining a foothold within the Continental Army. Seeing Washington’s own example of character influenced those serving with/under him to want to improve themselves as a man and then as a mason. Rogers in his book says this concerning this moment in American and Washington’s history,
“Masonry was widespread over the colonies in 1776. There were 110 Lodges at that time and fifty military Lodges. Masonry grew during the Revolutionary period and for several years afterwards. There were several causes for the growth of Masonry during this period. The influence of Washington and his support must have been a factor in that growth.”
Those personal and masonic characteristics not only changed the military man in the Continental Army to become a better man, but it unified them into one single body of shared beliefs and dreams, who would then influence the new nation following the war.
Having men from all over the colonies with such a mix of backgrounds did prove to be problematic for many. Chaplains that would follow regiments came from a specific religious background, and did not always satisfy the religious needs of those serving. This caused disunity amongst the men and also hindered the cause of revolution. For if the men in the army did not have equal needs met to them, then how could a new nation championing equality and other republican ideals hope to survive? From his book, Hackett painted the picture very well and the solution through which Washington’s own influence greatly promoted the role of military lodges.
“The Christian chaplaincy in the Revolutionary War began with a disorganized system of volunteer preachers. In practice…chaplains were few in number and transient in service…the chaplains were additionally frustrated in their work by the soldiers’ pervasive drunkenness, profanity, and widespread lack of interest in religious services. On July 4, 1775, the day after Washington took command, he reminded the army that the Articles of War forbade ‘profane cursing, swearing and drunkenness.’ But an apparent indifference on the part of the chaplains encouraged soldiers’ apathy. In June of 1777, Washington addressed Congress at length on this knotty subject. Fearing the outbreak of religious disputes if men were compelled ‘to a mode of Worship which they do not profess,’ he concluded that it would be best if each regiment had a voice in choosing a chaplain of its own ‘religious sentiments.’
In contrast to organized Christianity, the military lodges sought to overcome local differences. The fraternity’s emphasis on social distinction based on merit rather than birth similarly worked against local prejudices. Moreover, the lodges provided social space for war-weary officers from all over the colonies to relax and enjoy one another’s company. The fraternity’s commitment to creating a society based on an affection among men that transcended differences suggests an anticipation of the new republican society that the army’s officers were fighting to create. As the war continued, the symbols and rituals of Freemasonry, which united men of diverse backgrounds, also reinforce the patriotic effort to create a public sphere of unity in the emerging American society.”  That pretty much summed up the great importance and influence George Washington and Freemasonry had on the military and on the early United States. However, there is more that Freemasonry provided these men.
Loyalty, unity, trustworthiness are tenants that masons today take as being some of the most basic aspects of the fraternity. Brothers are taught to be loyal to their individual communities, municipalities and nations. They are united as a brotherhood, and as such are trusting of a fellow brother from wherever they may hail. In these military lodges, Washington made sure that these qualities were focused upon, but for what reason? Consider the situation for a moment. The nation is in open rebellion fighting for political freedom from another nation. The importance of loyalty within the Continental Army towards freedom and this new American nation was of paramount necessity. General Washington needed to have his men unified into one fighting force, with a single goal in sight. He needed these men to be absolutely loyal to the cause of the Revolution. With many of these men in the military and also the new national government belonging to Freemasonry, Washington knew he could trust these men as fellow brothers. However, there is one major event that would shake Washington’s personal resolve that created ripples throughout Freemasonry in America for centuries to follow. Amongst Washington’s trusted officers and generals, there was a fellow masonic brother by the name of Benedict Arnold. Without going into details, most Americans already know why this specific man has such a dubious shadow upon him. The betrayal and defection of Arnold to the British forces pushed Washington to influence Freemasonry in America to teach the great importance of being loyal to one’s country, regardless of the situation.
General Arnold was in the midst of horrific battle, losing to the British forces. When the battle turned towards a defeat for the Americans, Arnold found his own mortal life in great jeopardy. At the moment of being killed, he initiated the grand hailing sign of masons in distress, fearing for his life. One of the British officers was a fellow mason, recognised this and let Arnold live. That alone should have been all right, but Arnold went further and changed sides rather die for the cause with honour. In the 20th degree of the Northern Jurisdiction of the Scottish Rite, also known as the George Washington Degree, the outcome of Arnold’s actions are made known and also the great importance Washington had towards being loyal to one’s nation, especially during a time of war. The outcome is that or Arnold being banished from all Masonic lodges in the United States and to return to living in exile as a traitor. Charles Callahan said this concerning Benedict Arnold, “the treason of Arnold has been signalled as the crowning act of infamy of those bitter years of strife. His name, dishonored, is a synonym of shame and his acts of early heroism are all forgotten in the storm of public malediction.”

This incident did not sway Washington’s masonic journey or hopes for the new nation, on the contrary it encouraged him to persevere the cause. Not only did the young country need patriots loyal to liberty and upon the republican virtues the nation were founded, it needed a group of men who were orderly, had a strong moral compass, loyal to this new nation, had the greatly needed leadership skills, were trustworthy, had the ability to rise beyond one’s social standing, and united into one body. This we find within Freemasonry then and today. It is through Freemasonry that many of the core ideals of the United States originate and flourish. History may omit the direct ties to the importance Freemasonry had on the new United States and the spread of enlightenment ideals, but it will not omit the importance George Washington had on the nation. Freemasonry’s influence in forming such a nation did not rest only in America, it influenced the French Revolution, social and political reforms in the United Kingdom, influenced political change in Europe and also in the Russian Empire. “Masonry gave one the hope that he can become a better person which encourages moral thinking and action.” While visiting the King David’s Lodge in Newport, Rhode Island in 1790, George Washington stated, “being persuaded that a just application of the principles on which the Masonic fraternity is founded must be promotive of private virtue and public prosperity, I shall always be happy to advance the interest of the society and to be considered by them as a deserving Brother.”
Indeed the legacy of George Washington had on the United States is invaluable, along with his influence on Freemasonry. It can be said that Washington’s influence were great and lasting in those early years of the Revolution and nation which guided the United States to become a formidable member of the world of nations were great and lasting. Had it not been for his involvement in the fraternity and that of military lodges to teach the burgeoning new leaders of the country on what it meant to be a man and a mason, the results would have been very different.



Callahan, Charles H. Washington: The Man and The Mason, 5th ed. Washington D.C.: National Capital Press, Inc., 1913.

Hackett, David G. That Religion in Which All Men Agree: Freemasonry in American Culture. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2014.

Hahn, Conrad, et. al. Colonial Freemasonry. Transactions of the Missouri Lodge of Research, vol. 30, 1973-74.

Rogers, L. Randall. Our Masonic Presidents. Waco TX: Texan Press, 1998.

History of George E. Dowling

Most Worshipful Grand Master, 1893

George Enoch Dowling was born on Tuesday, February 26, 1839 in the township of Bayham, London District, Canada. He came to Grand Rapids in that same year with his parents, and settled on a farm near there. He began school at five years of age. At the age of thirteen he went to town and worked his way through the union and high schools, finishing his course by teaching a four-month’s term in a country district nine miles away. In April 1856 he went to Grand Haven where he found work in a store, and afterwards in a bank. He spent the winter of 1857-8 in a lumber office in Chicago, Ill. He returned to Michigan in April 1858 where he found work with Noah H. Ferry, a lumberman, at White Lake for one year.

In April 1859, at the age of twenty, he went to California to look for gold. Finding none, he returned to White Lake, Michigan in April 1860. In 1865 he entered into partnership with E.P. Ferry in a lumber business in Montague. This firm built mills. He worked there for seventeen years. In 1882, he founded the Muskegon County Bank.

He married Miss Annie Wilson on April 10, 1875 in Lansing, Michigan.

He was raised as a Master Mason in Muskegon Lodge, No. 140 on October 10, 1864. He demitted from Muskegon Lodge, on April 23, 1866 and founded Montague Lodge, No. 198 in Montague, Michigan. He was Worshipful Master of Montague Lodge, Under Dispensation in 1866, and of the chartered Lodge for four years thereafter, and also in 1862, 1882, 1883, 1884, and in 1885. He was secretary in 1873 and treasurer from 1874 to 1881 and from 1886 to 1892.

He was exalted to the sublime degree of a Royal Arch Mason in Muskegon Chapter, No. 47, R.A.M., at Muskegon in Muskegon Chapter, No. 47, R.A.M., on November 28, 1867, and was admitted to the rewards and honors of a Royal and Select Master, in Tyre Council, No. 10, R. & S. M., in Grand Rapids, Michigan on December 28, 1871; was constituted, created and dubbed a Knight Templar in DeMolai Commandery, No. 5, K.T., in Grand Rapids on February 29, 1868; was admitted, constituted and proclaimed a Sublime Prince of the Royal Secret, 32 of the Scottish Rite, in DeWitt Clinton Consistory, at Grand Rapids, Michigan on March 11, 1886, and was received, admitted and constituted a Noble of the Mystic Shrine at the Moslem Temple, in Detroit on February 10, 1886. He demitted from Moslem Temple to become a charter member of Saladin Temple, in Grand Rapids on April 6, 1886.

Brother Dowling was a member of this Grand Lodge continuously for twenty-eight years, during which time he attended twenty-five Annual Communications. He was Junior Grand Deacon in 1888, Senior Grand Deacon in 1889, was elected Junior Grand Warden in 1890, Senior Grand Warden in 1892, and Most Worshipful Grand Master in 1893.

He died on March 30, 1896.

For more information regarding past Grand Masters of the Grand Lodge of Michigan click here. A special thanks to the Michigan Masonic Museum & Library for providing this information.

Happy Thanksgiving!

On behalf of Muskegon Lodge No. 140 and Montague-Whitehall Lodge No. 198 we would like to wish you all a happy Thanksgiving Day. May you find yourselves in the warmth of good friends and family.

Below is the Thanksgiving Proclamation by Brother George Washington, first President of the United States of America. It was enclosed in his Circular to the Governors of the States and was written while he was in New York on 3 October 1798. Proceeding the Proclamation George Washington wrote: “I do myself the honor to enclose to your Excellency a Proclamation for a general Thanksgiving which I must request the favor of you to have published and made known in your State in the way and manner that shall be most agreeable to yourself.”

Thanksgiving Proclamation, 3 October 1789

By the President of the United States of America. a Proclamation.

president-george-washingtonWhereas it is the duty of all Nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey his will, to be grateful for his benefits, and humbly to implore his protection and favor—and whereas both Houses of Congress have by their joint Committee requested me “to recommend to the People of the United States a day of public thanksgiving and prayer to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many signal favors of Almighty God especially by affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a form of government for their safety and happiness.”

Now therefore I do recommend and assign Thursday the 26th day of November next to be devoted by the People of these States to the service of that great and glorious Being, who is the beneficent Author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be—That we may then all unite in rendering unto him our sincere and humble thanks—for his kind care and protection of the People of this Country previous to their becoming a Nation—for the signal and manifold mercies, and the favorable interpositions of his Providence which we experienced in the course and conclusion of the late war—for the great degree of tranquillity, union, and plenty, which we have since enjoyed—for the peaceable and rational manner, in which we have been enabled to establish constitutions of government for our safety and happiness, and particularly the national One now lately instituted—for the civil and religious liberty with which we are blessed; and the means we have of acquiring and diffusing useful knowledge; and in general for all the great and various favors which he hath been pleased to confer upon us.

and also that we may then unite in most humbly offering our prayers and supplications to the great Lord and Ruler of Nations and beseech him to pardon our national and other transgressions—to enable us all, whether in public or private stations, to perform our several and relative duties properly and punctually—to render our national government a blessing to all the people, by constantly being a Government of wise, just, and constitutional laws, discreetly and faithfully executed and obeyed—to protect and guide all Sovereigns and Nations (especially such as have shewn kindness unto us) and to bless them with good government, peace, and concord—To promote the knowledge and practice of true religion and virtue, and the encrease of science among them and us—and generally to grant unto all Mankind such a degree of temporal prosperity as he alone knows to be best.

Given under my hand at the City of New-York the third day of October in the year of our Lord 1789.

Go: Washington


History – The Minutes of the First Session of the Grand Lodge of Michigan

The depth of Masonic history is almost never ending. From the exoteric to the esoteric there is almost always something interesting to discover. The treasures you can find are sometimes amazing. At the Michigan Masonic Museum and Library in Grand Rapids you can find many rare books and tomes to help on your studies. The other day while visiting, Dirk Hughes the Director, was getting out the original copy of the minutes of the first Grand Lodge of Michigan from the 1820s. This well preserved book will be on display in the future at the museum. I suggest you go visit and see it first hand. The history contained in its pages alone is amazing and well worth your attention.

For more information on the Michigan Masonic Museum and Library visit the following links:
Facebook Page



Michigan Masonic Museum and Library

mmmlThe Michigan Masonic Museum and Library was established to preserve Michigan fraternal history and to allow for a place of study for those interested in the history of Freemasonry. It was founded on June 27, 1980. The Museum and Library is funded by the Grand Lodge of Michigan and the Michigan Masonic Charitable Foundation.

The private library is open to the public and it houses over 8,000 print volumes. Along side the books you will find an archive of over 6,000 photographs, a collection of officer jewels, antique Masonic aprons, charts, and carpets. There is also a collection of rare Masonic books, which are not allowed outside of the library.

The Museum and Library is open to the public, even non-Masons, and has free admission. So stop by and visit Director Dirk Hughes and learn a little Masonic History.

233 East Fulton Street, Suite 10, Grand Rapids, MI 49503

Mon – Closed
Tue – 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM
Wed – 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM
Thu – 12:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Fri – 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM
Sat – 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM
Sun – Closed

For more information click here to follow the Museum on Facebook.

Cornerstones of Muskegon | Brother Charles Turner Hills (Nov. 14 1821 – Dec. 3 1902)

When Charles Turner Hills, of Muskegon, Michigan, passed away December 3, 1902, at the ripe age of eighty-one years, there departed a pioneer who left behind him material evidences of his energy, thrift and benevolence, the memory of a career worthy of emulation by posterity and a personal and business reputation that still lives and will continue to survive for many years. His name is so inseparably linked with the history of the white pine industry of Muskegon and of Michigan that the annals of the growth of that city and state would not be complete without a recital of his career.

Charles Turner Hills was the eldest of five children. He was born November 14, 1821, at Bennington, Vermont, where he obtained his early education in the public schools. At the age of thirteen he began his active career, going to Troy, New York, to take the position of clerk in a dry goods store. His father moved to Grand Rapids, Michigan, in January, 1838, and he followed in April of the same year. In the new state, which had but recently been admitted to the Union, his family experienced the trying hardships of an existence in its almost unbroken wilderness. Turner Hills, the father, died in 1842, and his mantle naturally fell upon the eldest son.

Looking for larger opportunities, Charles Turner Hills left home May 25, 1852, in company with a younger brother, and journeyed to Muskegon, reaching there after a two days’ trip through leagues of unbroken timber. Although Muskegon at that time was nothing but a village, the young man recognized its great possibilities and the opportunities it afforded for making a fortune, to one who possessed the ability and— what was perhaps more necessary—the perseverance. With his brother he built a shanty on the banks of Black creek, four miles from the town, and there his connection with the lumber industry began with the shaving of shingles by hand. After two months of this work, he and his brother took up their habitation on the Muskegon river, four miles south of Sand Creek, and continued to work together until 1853, when Mr. Hills went to Muskegon and his brother returned to the family home in Kent county.

180px-Charles_hills_photo_from_American_Lumberman2Mr. Hills’ first business position in Muskegon was that of clerk for the lumber firm of Ryerson & Morris. His employment by this concern at that time did not seem a matter of any moment, but it was one of the most important steps in his career, for he was identified with the interests of this firm during the remainder of his active business life. His salary the first year was $350; the second year $450 with board. In 1859 he took charge of the firm’s books and became more closely identified with the concern’s interests. In 1865, when Mr. Ryerson bought out the interest of Mr. Morris in the saw mill, Mr. Hills was taken into partnership. The new firm, known as Ryerson, Hills & Co., was composed of Martin Ryerson, Charles T. Hills, H. H. Getty and Ezra Stevens. All of these, with the exception of Mr. Getty, are now deceased. Ryerson, Hills & Co. became one of the most important lumber firms on the Muskegon river. As Mr. Ryerson had moved to Chicago in 1851, the immediate management of the business devolved almost entirely upon Mr. Hills and Mr. Getty. Martin A. Ryerson became a member of the firm January 1, 1881, succeeding his father, Martin Ryerson, who had retired from active service and who died September 6, 1887.

Ryerson, Hills & Co. did a tremendous business in Michigan white pine. They made large investments on the Muskegon river. The manufacture of lumber and its marketing rendered them a large profit, which was augmented by the increase in the value of the lands. The output of the firm averaged 50,000,000 feet of white pine every year. It owned two saw mills and operated its own fleet of lumber-carrying vessels.

Although Ryerson, Hills & Co. was one of the most prominent of Muskegon’s lumber manufacturing concerns, only one member of the firm continued to make Muskegon his home during the latter years of its operation and after it had ceased business. Mr. Hills invested money in local enterprises and closely identified himself with the material growth of the city. He was one of the prominent and potent factors in the upbuilding of Muskegon’s present industrial greatness, which has succeeded her renown as a lumber producing point. In the latter years of his life he enjoyed some of the ease which he had so well earned by early hardship and untiring energy.

180px-Charles_Hills_Lovell_Moore_lodge_photo2In the organization and in the administration of the affairs of the Muskegon Booming Company, Mr. Hills was one of the chief figures. He was the company’s first president, and held that office at various periods for many terms. He possessed an expert knowledge of log running. He knew not only how to conduct the affairs of a great booming company, but also was familiar with the best methods employed in the woods and on the river.

Mr. Hills was an enthusiastic member of the Masonic fraternity. He was Eminent Commander of his Commandery fifteen times. He was a thirty-third degree Mason and a charter member of Muskegon Chapter No. 47, Royal Arch, Muskegon Commandery No. 22, Knights Templar, and Dewitt Clinton Consistory. He held many offices in the Masonic bodies. He was two years District Deputy Grand Master. His Masonic history would fill a page. Its crowning event was the presentation by Mr. Hills to the Muskegon Masonic societies of a magnificent Masonic Temple. No building of its kind in the United States surpasses it in the artistic strength of its exterior or the beauty and utility of its interior arrangement. Mr. Hills spent $42,000 in erecting the building and $8,000 more was expended in furnishing it. It was completed in June, 1900, and dedicated September 12, of the same year, the event being marked by one of the greatest Masonic gatherings in the history of Michigan. Masons, distinguished both in the order and in public life, journeyed to Muskegon from all over the country, and the entire Michigan Grand Lodge attended. Mr. Hills lived to see the temple completed and to have evidence of its appreciation by the Masonic bodies which used it. He died December 3, 1902. The funeral services over the deceased lumberman were among the most impressive in the history of the state and were conducted under the auspices of its most eminent Masonic officers.


Masonic History

  • Petitioned Muskegon Lodge No. 140, F.& A.M., March 2, 1863.
  • Initiated March 20, 1863; passed April 9, 1863; raised April 20, 1863; dimitted January 1, 1866 (in order to form Lodge #182).
  • Petitioned Grand Rapids Chapter R.A.M., #7, November 23, 1863.
  • Elected December 21, 1863. Advanced, elected, presided and exalted March 3, 1864.
  • Petitioned De Molai Commandery, Knights Templar, #5, stationed at Grand Rapids, October 26, 1866. Elected, dubbed, and created October 26, 1866; dimitted November 6, 1868.
  • Received the degree of Royal and Select Master in Tyre Council #10, Grand Rapids, December 18, 1873.
  • Received the grades of the Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite to the 14th grade in Grand Rapids, April 24th, 1868, and the grades from the 14th to the 32d in Detroit, May 13, 1868.
  • Received the 33d and last degree in Portland, Mained, August 19, 1875.
  • Charter member of Lovell Moore Lodge #182, F. & A.M.
  • Charter member of Muskegon Chapter #47, R.A.M.
  • Charter member of Muskegon Commandery #22, Knight Templar.
  • Charter member of DeWitt Clinton Consistory.
  • Received the degrees of the Royal Order of Scotland in Milwaukee, September 18, 1878.
  • Elected Senior Warden of Muskegon Lodge #140, F. & A.M., December 21st, 1863 (same year as his initiation).
  • Elected Worshipful Master of Muskegon Lodge #140, F. & A.M., December 12, 1864 (Third master of the lodge).
  • Elected Worshipful Master of Lovell Moore Lodge #182, F. & A.M., January 18, 1866.
    Elected Treasurer of Lovell Moore Lodge #182, F. & A.M., December 19, 1866, and re-elected December 11, 1872, and May 27, 1874.
  • Elected Scribe in Muskegon Chapter #47, R.A.M., February 9, 1867, and installed by the Grand High Priest February 14, 1867. Re-elected Scribe December 5, 1867.
  • Elected High Priest December 24, 1868.
  • Elected Treasurer December 1, 1870 and re-elected 1871, 1872, 1873, 1874, 1875, 1876, 1877, 1878, 1879, 1880, and 1881.
  • Elected district Deputy Grand Master June 1873, and re-elected 1874.
  • Elected Deputy Grand Commander of the Grand Commandery of Michigan, June 1874.
  • Elected Eminent Commander of Muskegon Commandery #22, K.T., June 16, 1868, and re-elected in 1869, 1870, 1871, 1872, 1873, 1874, 1875, 1876, 1877, 1878, 1879, 1880, 1881.
  • Elected Generalissimo April 1, 1884.
  • Elected Eminent Commander for the 15th time in the Spring of 1886.
  • Received the degrees of the Ancient Arabic Order of Nobles the Mystic Shrine in Detroit, April 24, 1882.
  • Charter member of Saladin Temple A.A.O.N.M.S.
  • Appointed High Priest and Prophet of Saladin Temple, April 22, 1886.
  • Elected High Priest and Prophet of Saladin Temple, December 15, 1887.
  • Donated Temple to Masonic Bodies of Muskegon, September 12, 1900.
Biography originally published in, American Lumberman, Chicago, 1905
Chronological list compiled by Roger W. Tharp, PM #140
Research done by Quintin C. Tiffany, #140
Edited and formatted by Joseph D. VanDerStelt, #140

Michigan Lodge of Research & Information No. 1, F&AM

If you have an interest in Philosophy, History, and Education in general AND if you happen to be a Master Mason I highly recommend supporting Michigan Lodge of Research & Information No. 1, F&AM by petitioning for Associated Membership.

Should you be interested in getting a petition send them a message. Below is some history and information that we shamelessly borrowed from their Facebook page. Their Facebook page is also where you can send them a message to get a petition or ask any questions you may have. The best way you can help protect the future of Freemasonry is by educating yourself in our history.

General Information

The Michigan Lodge of Research and Information No.1 held an organizational meeting on September 17, 1983, with the approval of MWB Russel Wells, Grand Master. The first meeting was held in Lansing, Michigan, with 41 interested Brothers attending. At that meeting, a motion was passed and approved requesting a Special Dispensation to form a Lodge of Research and Information.

The second meeting was held in Homer, Michigan. The Special Dispensation was granted on November 11, 1983, naming Robert N.Osbourne as Worshipful Master, Donald J.Van Kirk as Senior Warden, and Philip P. Steele as Junior Warden.

At the Annual Communication of the Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons of the State of Michigan, held in Detroit on May 29, 1985, the Michigan Lodge of Research and Information No.1 was granted a Charter. The Charter was presented by Right Worshipful Brother Richard H.Sands, a member of the Lodge.

The purpose of the Lodge is to foster interest in Masonic research and to provide information. The interests of the Lodge are historical, educational, topical, and social.

The Lodge meets quarterly in March, June, September, and November. The meetings are always held on Saturday (typically the fourth) so as not to conflict with the meetings of other Lodges. The primary purpose of these quarterly meetings is the presentation and discussion of papers. The business portion is kept to a minimum, usually limited to paying bills, approval of previous meeting minutes, and accepting new members.

A warm welcome is always extended to any Masonic visitors in good standing desiring a seat in the Lodge. All are welcome, whether they would like to present a paper or just avail themselves of the opportunity to improve their Masonic knowledge.

Associate Membership in the Michigan Lodge of Research and Information No.1 is open to any Master Mason in good standing of a Michigan Lodge or one in a jurisdiction in amity with the Grand Lodge of Michigan. Membership is by plural membership only. Active membership is conferred by the Lodge by nomination and election by a three-fourths vote upon evidence of Masonic scholarship.

Dressing the Part | The Mason’s Lady | Reblog

In our fast paced existence we sometimes over look the basics of being a gentleman. One of the key aspects missed the most these days is dressing the part. We are just to busy, it costs to much, its not worth the effort. We are all guilty of dressing down even for events in which we should do our best to look good. Dressing up is not done, as gentlemen, to be prideful or too lord over others. It is done to show respect for those around you. This is why it is common to dress up for church, for weddings, for special dinners. It is about showing the people around you that you respect them enough to take that extra step in presenting yourself well.

I know I am personally guilty of under dressing for an occasion. It comes down to a few reasons. The first one is that I have not had a need to buy formal wear so I don’t have an extensive wardrobe. I was also never taught, while growing up, the basics of dressing for formal events; even something as simple as tying a tie (Thank You YouTube). Because of this I am often left frustrated or hesitant to go out to formal social gatherings. I am sure I am not alone in this situation.

So why go on and on about this topic? Well, I stumbled upon a nice blog post about the subject. The blog is called, ‘The Mason’s Lady’. The post is titled, ‘Dressing the Part’. The blog was created by the wife of a brother Freemason. She has presented some wonderful information that can help those of us, like myself, not well versed in formal wear to develop a better foundation of basic formal dressing.

The post can be found in the link below. I suggest you read over some of her other posts as well.