My Life: Robert Moray

Robert Moray

Sir Robert Moray

Military Man – Scientist – French Spy

Royal Society Founder – Freemason

Robert Moray was born on the 10th March 1609 at Craigie, Perthshire, Scotland.  The son of Perthshire laird; Sir Mungo Moray, and his mother the daughter of George Halket of Pitfirran, Dumferline.

Moray was educated firstly at St.Andrew’s University in Scotland, and continued his education in France.

In 1633, Moray served with the Scots Guards of Louis XIII.  He became a spy for Cardinal Richelieu.  In 1638, the General Assembly of Scotland’s Covanters rebelled against Charles I.  Richelieu promoted Moray to Lieutenant Colonel in Louis Scots Guards, and sent him to Scotland.  His commission was to recruit Scottish soldiers.  He also had a personal objective, assisting fellow Scots in their dispute with Charles, which would cause trouble for England.

Moray, appointed quartermaster – general of Covanter’s Army in 1640, marched south with Scottish forces, and defeated Earl Stafford’s Army at Newcastle.

On the 20th May 1641 Robert Moray was initiated as a Freemason in Newcastle by General Alexander Hamilton, commander of the Covenanter’s and John Mylne, Master Mason to King Charles I.

By 1643, acted as liaison officer between Covenanter’s Army and Charles I from his Oxford home.  On the 10th January 1643, Charles knighted him, and upon return to France, he was promoted to full Colonel of the Scots Guards.  On the 24th November 1643, was captured by the Duke of Bavaria and held prisoner for eighteen months.  On the 28th April 1645, freed after ransom of £16,500 was paid by the French for his release.

Following the execution of Charles I. Moray opened talks at the bequest of the Earl of Lauderdale, that saw Charles II be crowned King of the Scots at Scone in 1650. Charles campaign against the English and Cromwell lay in shatters at the “Battle of Dunbar.”

Charles had no option but to flee to the safety of France, leaving Moray in Scotland.

In 1652 Robert Moray married Sophia Lindsey and, in the July, returned to Scotland, to drum up support… pushing that Charles should sit on the English throne, it was to be a failed attempt.  Sophia, Robert Morays wife died on the 2nd January 1653, in child birth.

Cromwell defeated Scottish forces in July 1654 at the “Battle of Loch Garry.”  Moray was accused of betrayal towards the King, and cleared of any wrong doing upon appeal.  With this chapter in his life over, returned to France and would never remarry.

Aged forty-six, Moray resigned from the Scots Guards, and spent his time in Maastricht studying science.

In the September, attended Charles in Paris, where he took part in negotiations to have him take his rightful place on England’s throne.  In late June of 1660 the King returned to England, with Moray following up at a later time.  Charles greeted his friend warmly, and gave him quarters in the Palace of Whitehall, near Horse Guards Gate.

Following Charles II’s restoration Moray became one of the Royal Society’s founders, and their first official meeting was held on the 28th November 1660 at Gresham College, Bishopsgate, London, with Moray as its first president.

In February of 1661, Moray became a Privy Councillor and later Lord of the Exchequer.

On the 4th July 1673, Robert Moray died at his London residence, and buried in Westminster Abbey by order of the King.

Benjamin Franklin: Freemason & President

BenjaminFranklin960

Benjamin Franklin was one of America’s greatest diplomats and hero of The War of Independence, born on the 17thJanuary 1706 in Boston, Massachusetts, son of Josiah Franklin soap maker, and his mother Abiah Folger.

It was his parents wish, that Benjamin should enter the church.  However, restraints on family finances saw him attend Boson Latin School for only two years, which meant he could not graduate.  Left school aged ten to work in his father’s soap and candle business.

Aged 13, Benjamin undertook the post of an apprentice to his brother James who ran a printing business, and founder of the 1721 New-England Courant Newspaper.

Benjamin wanted to write for the paper, but James said no.  So Benjamin did it anyway in defiant of his brother, by taking a pseudonym; Mrs Silence Dogood … they became a hit amongst the readers.  When he admitted to his brother it was he writing the letters, James became very jealous of the attention he had received.

James got thrown into jail for taking on the established Puritan Preachers on the controversial subject of smallpox, leaving Benjamin to run the paper.

Instead of thanking his brother for keeping the paper going whilst he was in prison, James made Benjamin’s life a living hell, until 1723 when he walked out.

Aged just 17, Benjamin went to Philadelphia, and worked in the printing industry, but it was Governor Sir William Keith of Pennsylvania who suggested he should go to London, where he worked as a typesetter.  Aged 20, he returned to Philadelphia with the help of Thomas Denham, a merchant who employed him.

The Junto group was formed in 1727 by Benjamin Franklin, consisting of artisans and tradesman intending to improve their community.

The exact date when Benjamin Franklin was initiated as a Freemason is unknown, but believed to be in the February of 1731, at St. John’s Lodge in Philadelphia.

Reading and discussions were their main aim.  As books were expensive, so the subscription library came into force.  This led to the founding of the “Library Company of Philadelphia” in 1731 by Franklin.  In 1739, books were housed at the State House of Pennsylvania … now we refer to it as Independence Hall.  All that changed in 1791 when a building was specially built for the purpose, containing rare books, pamphlets, 160,000 manuscripts and some 75,000 graphical items.

In 1728, Franklin set up a printing business with Hugh Meredith; The Pennsylvania Gazette, it was a forum by which he could comment on local reforms.    Over a period of time, he gained the respect of his local community.

In 1731, Benjamin Franklin was initiated into the Masonic Lodge.  In 1732 went on to publish the first German language newspaper, and in 1734 was appointed Grand Master of Pennsylvania’s Masonic Lodge, and that same year published the “Masonic Book in the America’s.”

Aged just 17 in 1723 Benjamin Franklin proposed to 15-year-old Deborah Read, but the offer of marriage was declined by her mother.  Deborah went on to marry John Rodgers, who accrued debts, and fled to Barbados to avoid prosecution, and being flung into jail.

In 1728 Benjamin Franklin fathered a child named William … mother not known.

Due to bigamy laws at that time, Deborah was not free to take Benjamin Franklin as her husband. So it was that Franklin went on to establish what was known as a common-law marriage on 1stSeptember 1730.

They had three children; “William, Franklin’s illegitimate son, Francis Folger Franklin born October 1732, who died aged four of smallpox.  Sarah Franklin born in 1743, who went on to marry Richard Bache, and they had seven children.

Along with running a printing shop, they ran a store, selling soap and fabric which Deborah was responsible for, and a book store run by Benjamin.

In 1733 Franklin published “Poor Richards Almanack” under the name of Richard Saunders, containing witty aphorisms and lively writings.

Around 1735, Benjamin Franklin was elected Secretary, a post he held until 1738.  He belonged to a committee responsible for the drafting of Lodge Laws.

In 1736, he organised Philadelphia’s Union Fire Company, the first of its kind in the city.  Then in 1752 he helped to found the Philadelphia Contribution for Insurance Against Loss by Fire.

For it was in 1743 Franklin invented a heat-efficient stove, and named it the Franklin Stove, to warm houses more efficiently.  He never took out a patent on its design, claiming it was for the people, to help improve society.  Then in 1749, Franklin retired from printing and concentrated his efforts on science and innovations, which led him down the route of electricity in the early 1750’s.

Politics introduced Franklin into new areas, and in 1757 went to England to represent Pennsylvania, over who should represent the Colony and its descendants.

William Franklin Benjamin’s illegitimate son studied law in the early part of the 1760’s.  He like his father before him also fathered an illegitimate son; William Temple Franklin born 22ndFebruary 1762, who went into care.  Later that year he married Elizabeth Downes, upon passing the bar, and was appointed Royal Governor of New Jersey in 1763.

America opposed the Stamp Act in 1765, had it not been for his testimony to Parliament which persuaded members to cancel the said act.

Benjamin Franklin’s wife died in 1774 of a stroke, whilst he was in England, he had often begged her to come to England, but she feared sea travel.  Franklin went on to stay in England as a Colonial representative until 1775.

Benjamin Franklin is remembered as one of the greatest of the Founding Fathers of the United States, having signed all original founding documents: (Declaration of Independence – Treaty of Paris – U.S. Constitution).

Benjamin Franklin played a major role in America’s development:

  • Unifying the colonists in their rebellion against England.
  • Philosophy concerning the rights of mankind.
  • Facilitating the American Revolution.

Benjamin Franklin, member of secret groups, in America, France and England, the main players of the War of Independence.

  • Master of the Masonic Lodge of Philadelphia.
  • Master of the Nine Sisters Lodge of France, from which came the French Revolution.
  • England’s Hell-Fire club, a political and sexual club founded by Francis Dashwood.

Franklin was Deputy Postmaster General for North America, and agent to the Pennsylvania Assembly, who resided in London, England for sixteen years.

Franklin became great friends with Francis Dashwood, Lord Despencer, and became a regular guest at the Dashwood estate of West Wycombe Park.

Some six miles from the Dashwood estate, on the banks of the River Thames, close to Marlow, laid the ruins of Medmenham Abbey.  A former Cistercian Order of Monks, founded it in 1145, the perfect location for the Hell-Fire club, located in a grove of trees, and almost concealed from sight.

The Roman Room within the Abbey housed indecent Roman frescoes, walls covered in famous English prostitutes, complimented with Egyptian gods and goddesses in wall niches.

Around 1752, Dashwood opened the Medmenham Monks Society, later known as the Hell-Fire club.  For his monks, there be nuns…  Many were prostitutes, other’s local women who craved excitement, but mostly ladies of society.

The order consisted of two groups of monks; the superiors and inferior members.  The Hell-Fire club was frequented by many important people, with combined power, they could control governments.

It was for this reason Benjamin Franklin became a member around 1764.

Franklin had many friends in England, but his loyalty to America, and the corruption in English politics, made him question, whether America should break their connection with England.  Then it came to his attention that one Thomas Hutchinson, thought to be working for the American people as an English-appointed Governor of Massachusetts, but in truth still worked for King George III of England.

Declaration of Independence

Shortly after his return to America, Franklin was elected to the Second Continental Congress, and was involved in drafting the Declaration of Independence, which was signed by 56 representatives including himself on 4thJuly 1776.

The French Government signed a Treaty of Alliance in 1778 with the American’s, and Franklin went on to sign the Treaty of Paris in 1783.

Upon his return home, Franklin was honoured for his works; he became President of the Executive Council of Pennsylvania, a delegate of the Constitutional Convention, signing the Constitution.

One of his final acts he will go down in history for; the anti-slavery treaty of 1789.

Benjamin Franklin, a loyal subject to his country, fought for what he believed in, and died aged 84 on the 17thApril 1790.  It is said 20,000 people attended his funeral.  His legacy still lives on…

Benjamin Franklin’s Masonic Timeline:

On the 6thJanuary 1705 Benjamin Franklin was born in Boston Massachusetts.

Franklin organized the Leathern Apron Club in 1727, a secret society in Philadelphia.

1730-1731: In the February he was initiated into Philadelphia’s Saint John’s Lodge.

In the June of 1732, drafted a set of By-Laws for Saint John’s Lodge.

On the 24thJune 1732 was elected Junior Grand Warden and Grand Master of Pennsylvania.

In the August of 1734, advertised the reprint of Anderson’s Constitutions of the Free Masons, the first Masonic book printed in America.

During Franklin’s administration as Grand Master 1734-5, The State House and Independence Hall. According to the old Masonic and family traditions the cornerstone was laid by him and the Brethren of Saint John’s Lodge.

According to letter written by Franklin on the 13thApril 1738 to his mother.  He is reportedly have stated that Freemasons have no principles or practices that are inconsistent with religion.

On the 25thMay 1743 visited Saint John’s Boston Lodge.

On the 29thAugust 1749 the Tun Tavern Lodge petitioned Provincial Grand Master Franklin for a Deputation under his sanction.  On the 13thMarch 1750 he was deposed as Provincial Grand Master and immediately appointed Deputy Grand Master by William Allen, Provincial Grand Master.

On the 12thMarch 1752, was appointed on Committee for building the Freemason’s Lodge in Philadelphia, and on the 25thOctober visited the Tun Tavern Lodge.

On the 24thJune 1755 played a prominent part in the Grand Anniversary and Dedication of the Freemason’s Lodge in Philadelphia, the first Masonic building in America.

In 1760 became Provincial Grand Master of Philadelphia.

On the 17thNovember 1760 present at the Crown & Anchor in London, England’s Grand Lodge.

In 1776 Benjamin Franklin became affiliated with Masonic Lodges in France.

On the 7thApril 1778, he assisted at the initiation of Voltaire in the Nine Sisters Lodge, a famous lodge in Paris.

On the 28thNovember 1778 officiated at the Lodge of Sorrou, the Masonic Funeral Service.

Benjamin Franklin was elected Worshipful Master on the 21stMay 1779, a post he held for two years.

In 1782 elected Venerable Worshipful Master of Loge des Neuf Soeurs, Grand Orient de Paris.

On the 7thJuly became member of the Respectable Lodge de Saint Jean de Jerusalem.

On the 24thApril 1785, elected Venerable d’Honneur of Respectable Lodge de Saint Jean de Jerusalem.

In the 1785 elected honorary member of Loge des Ron Amis, Good Friends, Rouen France.

On the 19thApril 1906, memorial services were held at his grave side in Christ Church yard, Philadelphia by officers of the Pennsylvania Lodge.  The occasion being to observe the two hundredth anniversary of the birth of Benjamin Franklin.

Wikipedia Image

George Washington: Freemason & President

fullsizeoutput_2f7

George Washington: Freemason & U.S.  President

George Washington was born on the 22ndFebruary 1732, to parents Augustine and Mary Washington at Bridges Creek, Westmorland County, Virginia. He was the eldest of six children.    His great-grandfather John Washington, a former clergyman was based in the County of Essex in England.  He took his family, seeking pastures new, leaving his native land, and in 1657 settled in Virginia, America.

On the 12thApril 1742, Augustine Washington, George Washington’s father, dies at the age of 49.

The young George Washington, was taken under the wing of his elder half-brother Lawrence, fourteen years his senior.  Lawrence suffered from tuberculosis, and they sailed to Barbados, seeking a cure, but things took a turn for the worst, when he contracted and died from the smallpox disease in the July of 1752.  George Washington inherited Lawrence’s 2,500-acre plantation of Mount Vernon.  He resided at Mount Vernon and managed the plantation, until Anne, Lawrence’s widow died in 1761, where upon he assumed full ownership of the property.

George Washington’s early Masonic Steps:

  • On the 1stSeptember 1752:  First recorded meeting of Fredericksburg Masonic Lodge in Virginia.
  • On the 4thNovember 1752: Washington is initiated and entered as an Apprentice Freemason (First Degree)
  • On the 3rdMarch 1753: Washington reached position Degree of Fellow Craft, Freemason (Second Degree)
  • On the 4thAugust 1753: Washington reached the position Sublime Degree of Master Mason (Third Degree)

On the 15thMarch 1754 Major Washington was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel of the Virginian Regiment, upon the death of Colonel Joshua Fry.

On the 28thMay 1754 Militia forces under the command of Washington, clashed with French forces in Ohio Valley.  It is thought these first shots, were known to have started the French and Indian War.  Having been pulled into battle with French forces around the 3rdJuly, Washington ordered his men to build a rough stockade and named it Fort Necessity, located near present day Farmington.  They were overwhelmed and surrendered the fort, and retreated back to Virginia.

The Battle of Monongahela of the 9thJuly 1755 at Braddock Pennsylvania where French and Indian forces defeated the vanguard of the British Army.  Commanding Officer, one General Braddock is mortally wounded, and Washington leads remaining force back to Virginia.

Washington looking for recognition for his military services in western Pennsylvania takes leave of his command from 4thFebruary to 25thMarch

and travels to Boston with George Mercer meeting with Governor Shirley.  Returning to Virginia on 28thMarch, Washington assumes his command of the Militia, and spends much of 1756-57 there on active duty.

In the latter months of 1758, the General Forbes expedition with Washington as his aide-de-camp expel French forces from the forks of the Ohio River.  The French burn Fort Duquesne withdraw and head north.

On the 6thJanuary 1759 Washington takes a wife, marrying the wealthy widow; Martha Dandridge Custis, becoming stepfather to her two children; Jack and Martha, as they settle down in Mount Vernon.

On the 12thJanuary 1759, Washington becomes an elected representative for Fairfax County and as such attends the House of Burgesses, in Williamsburg, Virginia.

Washington’s views started changing, and as a member of the Virginia House of Burgesses, stood up and opposed the Stamp Act and Townshend Acts.

On the 3rdOctober 1763, Washington takes up the post of Warden of Pohick Anglican Church, near his home of Mount Vernon.

On the 16thJuly 1765 Washington is re-elected to the House of Burgesses for Fairfax County.

The year 1774 were changing times in Washington’s political views, as he shook off his lifelong loyalties to Britain.  On the 1stAugust he receives his membership of the First Virginia Provincial Convention at Williamsburg.  That same year elected leader of seven delegates to the first Continental Congress in Philadelphia.

In the April of 1775 confrontation with the British quickly turned to armed conflicts, with the Battles of Lexington and Concord in Massachusetts.  George Washington had much experience of being a commander, and was well versed in military matters.  So, it was on the 15thJune, he was elected Commander-in-Chief of the Continental Army.  On the 3rdJuly Washington assumes command of the siege of the British Army in Boston, which ends with a U.S. victory on the 17thMarch 1776.

The Battle of Long Island, saw the U.S. Continental Army being beaten by English forces on the 27thAugust 1776.  Washington chose to retreat with his army across the East River… for they could fight another day.

Around the 17thNovember 1776, British forces captured Fort Lee and Fort Washington along the Hudson River.  At the same time Washington moves his forces across New Jersey towards Pennsylvania. With the British Army capturing Ft. Lee and Ft. Washington along the Hudson River, Washington begins moving his army across New Jersey toward Pennsylvania.

On the 26thDecember Washington crosses the Delaware River defeat the British at the Battle of Trenton.

On the 3rdJanuary 1777 Washington defeats Lord Cornwallis at the “Battle of Princeton,” New Jersey. The British Army is forced to retreat to New York for the winter months.  On the 11thSeptember British forces are victorious at the “Battle of Brandywine.”  The British Army occupies Philadelphia on the 26thSeptember, and on the 26thSeptember, and Washington is defeated at the “Battle of Germantown.”

The Battle of Monmouth Courthouse is fought on the 28thJune 1778 without a clear victor, as British Army withdraws on the 29thheading towards New York City.  On the 28thDecember Washington meets with Congress in Philadelphia looking to raise support for his army.

On the 19thAugust 1781, news reaches Washington of U.S. victories in the southern states.  With General Cornwallis trapped near Yorktown, in the August, barely holding out until the 19thOctober when they were forced to surrender.

On the 23rdMarch 1782, Washington receives an embroidered silk Masonic apron from Elkanah Watson and Francis Corentin Cossoul commercial agents in Nantes, France.  Washington wore this apron at the 1793 U.S. Capitol cornerstone ceremony.

The Treaty of Paris is formally signed on the 30thSeptember 1783, bringing to an end the American War for Independence.

On the 17thAugust 1784, Lafayette visits and presents Washington with a Masonic Apron at his Mount Vernon home.

At the U.S. Constitutional Convention held in Philadelphia on the 25thSeptember 1787, Washington is elected president of the convention.

A committee from Alexandria Lodge № 39 asked Washington to serve as “Charter Master” of the lodge as it changes from Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania to Grand Lodge of Virginia, in the spring of 1788.  The charter is approved on the 28thApril with George Washington as the lodge’s Worshipful Master.

On the 7thJanuary 1789, George Washington is elected as the First President of the United States of America, and on the 30thApril is inaugurated as President of the United States in New York, using a Bible from St.John’s Lodge No.1.  Oath of office is administered by Chancellor and Grand Master of New York.

On the 25thAugust 1789, Mary Washington, a proud mother of President Washington, dies at her home in Fredericksburg, aged 80 years.

On the 17thAugust 1790, Washington, sailed up from New York City, arriving at Newport, Rhode Island, congratulating people on becoming the thirteenth state.

On the 5thDecember 1792 President Washington is re-elected and serves a second term as President of the United States, and his inauguration takes place on the 4thMarch 1793 in Philadelphia.

Cornerstone Ceremony of 18thSeptember 1793:
Three Masonic Lodges = Cornerstone of U.S. Capitol

  • Potomac Lodge № 9 and
  • Federal Lodge №
  • Alexandria Lodge №

Items Used at the Cornerstone Ceremony:

  • Silver Trowel with Ivory handle made by John Duffy owned by Alexandria-Washington Lodge №
  • Wood T-Square and Level own by Alexandria-Washington Lodge №
  • Marble Gavel with wood handle, made by John Duffy owned by Potomac Lodge № 5, Washington D.C.

It is believed that Washington wore the Watson-Cassoul apron sent to him in 1783 to the ceremony.

On the 6thOctober 1794, at Bedford, Pennsylvania, President Washington takes to the field as Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces. The militia ha gathered there to suppress the “Whiskey Rebellion” in western Pennsylvania.

On the 18thAugust 1795, the U.S. Senate creates the Jay Treaty with Great Britain. This treaty insures the United States will remain neutral in the war between the Republic of France and the European monarchies.

On the 4thJuly 1798, with the threat of war looming ever closer with France, President. Adams appoints Washington as Commander-in-Chief of the Armies.

In the August of 1798, the Rev. G.W. Snyder of the Reformed Church, in Fredericktown, Maryland, sends Washington a letter regarding the Illuminati and Freemasonry in the United States. He encloses Proofs of a Conspiracy against all the Religions and Governments of Europe, carried on in the Secret.  Meetings of Free-Masons, Illuminati etc.

On the 14thDecember 1799, a tired George Washington’s life was nearing its end, and at 10.20pm he died.  On the 18thDecember, Washington is buried at Mount Vernon with Anglican Christian Burial Rite accompanied by a Masonic funeral ceremony. On the 22ndMay 1802, wife of George Washington and first President of the United States, one Martha Washington dies at the family home of Mount Vernon.

Wikipedia Image

Scotland’s Freemasonry

william_st_clair_of_roslin2

William St.Clair

Scottish Freemasonry started with the building of Rosslyn Chapel to the south of Edinburgh.

The Evidence:

  • Rosslyn has links to the Jewish Temple through the Knights Templar and Freemasonry.
  • If one looks at the ground plan of Rosslyn Chapel, it is a copy of Herod’s Temple in Jerusalem.
  • Within Rosslyn Chapel, there exists a stone document showing a First Degree Ceremony conducted by a Knights Templar.

Carvings within Rosslyn Chapel, were cut first from wood, await inspection by the Master of the Works, then cut in stone.

The lower window located in the chapel’s south-west corner, depicts a Freemasonic First Degree.  The figure shown be of a blind man kneeling between two pillars, with a noose around his neck, and a bible in his left hand.  The rope is held by another wearing the mantle of a Knights Templar.

The Seven Points… A Masonic Ceremony:

  • The man be blindfolded, an unusual form of blind justice.
  • The man kneels down.
  • The man holds a bible, many other figures holding books or scrolls can be found in Rosslyn Chapel.
  • The man has a noose about his neck, the only other figure within the chapel with a noose, is the angel Shemhazai wearing one about his feet.The sins of Shemhazai, caused God to send in the flood.  Shemhazai unable to face God hung himself between heaven and earth.
  • The man placed his feet in the posture used by Masonic candidates.
  • The ceremony takes place between two pillars of Masonic Lodge.
  • The noose being held by a knights Templar.

In 1440 William St. Clair renowned as one of the most powerful men in Scotland.

The building of Rosslyn Chapel was to house the treasures he had inherited from the Templars and establish a seat of spiritual authority to rival King James II who was dabbling in English politics and killed during the War of the Roses.

Formation of the Grand Lodge of Scotland:

1440 Masons given the Mason word by William to preserve the secret of the Templars.

1483 Masonry is starting to spread out as lodges initiate Candidates and give the ‘Mason Word.’

1599 Earliest surviving lodge just minutes from Edinburgh.

1601 James VI made a Mason at Lodge of Scoon and Perth.

1602 William Schaw sets up the modern lodge system in Scotland upon the instructions of James VI.

The Lodges of Scotland affirm William St. Clair of Roslin as hereditary Grand Master Mason of Scotland.

1603 James VI takes Freemasonry to England where he becomes King James I of England.

1641 Sir Robert Moray becomes the first Mason recorded to be born on English soil.

1715 First Jacobite Rising, lodges begin to disclaim their Scottish roots.

1717 Formation of Grand Lodge of London denies Jacobite heritage.

1725 First National Grand Lodge formed in Ireland.

1736 Grand Lodge of Scotland formed as a counter measure to London’s expansion.

William St. Clair of Roslin made First Grand Master Mason of Scotland and signs away his hereditary rights in favour of elected officers.

f87b1aeb99841090355b9505b87b9b9f

 

Freemason: Paul Revere

paul revere

Paul Revere

Paul Revere was born on the 21st December 1734 in Boston to parents; Apollos Rivoire and Deborah Hitchbourn.  His father was a silversmith, and Paul was trained in the art, and when his father died in 1753, he carried on the family business.  He became one of America’s finest precious metal craftsmen.  He also practiced dentistry and developed an early form of orthodontics.

In 1760 Paul Revere became a Freemason, and shortly thereafter joined two political groups; “The Sons of Liberty” and “The North End Caucus.”  He would become an active member in the Sons of Liberty, a group consisting of American Patriots who sought liberty for the colonies.

In the August of 1765, Paul Revere took part in the Stamp Act riots, which saw mobs tear down government offices in protest, which forced Parliament to withdraw the impending Stamp Act.

In 1766, Parliament brought forth the “Declaratory Act” giving them the right to tax the colonies.

Paul Revere was not a man of words, but a silversmith and started producing engravings highlighting the British Government, and their unpopular laws in Boston.

On the 1st October 1768 a force of 2,000 British soldiers arrived in Boston.  Tensions quickly rose between occupying British forces, which led to the deaths of five Boston civilians on the 5th March 1770, a tragedy that was known as the Boston Massacre.

boston massacre

The Boston Massacre

Paul Revere produced the engraving “The Bloody Massacre” showing the murderous act which took place in King Street, Boston.  His propaganda convinced the public that Britain’s Parliament was flawed in their colonial policies.  Revere and the Sons of Liberty kept the memory of the Boston Massacre alive in people’s minds.  For on the first anniversary of the massacre “5th March 1771.”  Revere staged a display of Boston Massacre engravings from his home windows.  This form of propaganda achieved the desired effect, persuading civilians that liberty was a just cause.

In the April of 1775, rumours spread that the British forces stationed in Boston were preparing to attack the Sons of Liberty and American patriots.  What the British didn’t know, the Sons of Liberty were watching them, so they could warn of an impending attack.

Patriot leader Dr Joseph Warren dispatched Paul Revere and William Dawes by separate routes to Lexington to warn Samuel Adams and John Hancock.

Paul Revere put in place another warning system.  Robert Newman would set lanterns in the steeple of the Old North Church to alert colonists in Charleston.  One lantern meant the British were coming by land and two lanterns by sea.

Later Paul Revere would serve in the American Army as an artillery man and thereafter turn his attention back to his silversmith business, which led to his expansion with a sheet copper mill.  This gave the American navy the option to use copper in ship hull production.

In later years, he served as Grand Master of Boston’s Masonic Grand Lodge.  Paul Revere died on the 10th May 1818.

Wallpaper Images

Scottish Poet and Freemason: Robert Burns

Robert Burns

Freemasonry has no greater name in its ranks, other than that of Robert Burns (Rabbie Burns). Higher tribute there is none for any man to say, justly, that the world is gentler and more joyous for his having lived; and that may truly be said of Robert Burns, whose very name is an emblem of pity, joy and brotherly love.

Robert Burns was born on the 25th January 1759 in Alloway, Ayrshire, Scotland in a two roomed cottage, the home of a tenant farmer. His parents being William Burnes and Agnes Broun, who ran a small market garden.

In 1766, William Burnes faced a dilemma, he could no longer earn enough to support his growing family. The family set up home at Mount Oliphant Farm, a few miles down the road. It was at this time, William saw to it that his gifted son Robert received some form of education. By the spring of 1777 the family left Mount Oliphant before William faced financial ruin, and moved to Lochlea Farm.

The problems faced by William Burnes and other farmers at that time, was the short lease system, granted to farmers. If a farmer improved his land, he would find the rent would increase when it was time to renew his lease. So it was, they attempted to scrape a living from the poor soil, as best they could. William Burnes was one of these farmers.

On the 4th July 1781, aged just twenty-two Burns was initiated into the mysteries of Freemasonry at St.David’s Lodge, Tarbolton as an Apprentice. The Second and Third degrees were conferred upon him that very night following his initiation.

In February 1781, peasant farmer William Burnes died. Robert and his brother Gilbert rented the farm of Mossgiel, from lawyer Gavin Hamilton. Robert would spend little time on the farm, he let his brother Gilbert take over the running of it, as he spent more time on his writing and love of women.

On the 27th July 1784, Burns was elected Depute Master of St.James Lodge at Tarbolton, a position he held until St.John’s Day 1788.

In 1785 Robert Burns had an affair with household servant, one Elizabeth Paton, which bore a child out of wedlock.

In 1785/86 Robert Burns had an affair with Jean Armour, resulting in the birth of twins in 1786, much to her father’s displeasure. The couple announced they be married, but Jean was forced into requesting an annulment by her father.

In 1786 Robert Burns released his book of “Kilmarnock Poems” which received much praise from his critics and public alike. In the same year he moved to Edinburgh as his fame as a poet grew, where he mingled within literary circles.

On the 26th October 1786, Burns was made an honary member of St.John’s Lodge, Kilmarnock, with the designation of being a “Poet.” Major William Parker master of the lodge, became a great friend of Burns, to the point of subscribing to thirty-five copies of his collection of poems.

In 1787 Burns was made a Royal Arch Mason in Eyemouth

With fame as a poet, Jean Armour’s Mason father consented to an official marriage between Robert Burns and Jean Armour in 1788.

Success was short lived, but Burns the poet had a family to support, and so in 1791 relocated to Dumfries to take up the position of an excise officer.

Burns had another love, collecting and composing traditional Scottish songs. He will always be remembered for his composition “ Auld Lang Syne” sung across the world, in celebration of New Year.

Robert Burns, famed Scottish poet died in Dumfries in 1796 at the age of 37. He lived for the day, his love was writing, women and drink, leaving behind a trail of illegitimate children and broken relationships.

Freemason: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Wolfgang-Amadeus-Mozart

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

On the 27th January 1756, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, the son of Leopold and Maria Mozart from Bavaria, was born in Saltzburg, Austria.  On the 28th January, the young Mozart was baptised with the names; Johannes Chrysostomus Wolfgangus Theophilus Mozart at St.Rupert’s Cathedral.  Mozart came from a musical heritage, for his father Leopold was a composer and violinist, serving as an assistant concert master in the Salzburg court.

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and his sister, Maria Anna came under the musical tutorage of their father; Leopold.  Wolfgang’s introduction into the world of music started when he was three and Maria was seven.  Wolfgang excelled quickly in the world of music, and by five, had written his first composition, and went on to demonstrate his abilities on harpsichord and violin.

With Wolfgang aged six, and Maria aged eleven, these child prodigies went on European tours.  Their father took them to the court of Bavaria, Paris, London, The Hague and Zurich in 1762.

In 1763, Leopold Mozart became Vice-kappelmeister to the Archbishop of Salzburg.  In the latter part of 1763, the Mozarts toured Germany, France, England, Switzerland and the low countries, promoting their child prodigies, and returning home in 1766.  Towards the end of 1766, the Mozarts travelled to Vienna, where Wolfgang Mozart composed two operas.  In 1768, the young and talented Mozart, wrote a Mass and a collection of Serenades, and in the October of 1769 became honorary “Konzertmeister “at the Salzburg court.

These concert tours, would promote this child genius; Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart as a possible prospect for employment by the noble courts of Europe, as a musician or court composer.

With Wolfgang’s sister having reached the age of 17, her musical career was all but over, for the custom of that time, no longer permitted her to show off her artistic talent in public.  It was now her time, to prepare for marriage.  With sadness in their heart, Wolfgang and his father, departed Salzburg bound for Italy in December of 1769, leaving his sister and mother behind.

Tours across Italy intensified to secure Wolfgang permanent employment, as they visited Verona, Mantua, Milan, Bologna, Florence, Rome and Naples.  Wolfgang composed the opera “Mitridate Re di Ponto,” which established his reputation in the world of opera.

Aged just 13, Wolfgang Mozart had made his mark, when Pope Clement XIV made him a “Knight of the Golden Spur,” and at Bologna admitted to the “Accademia Filarmonica.”

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart along with his father returned from Italy in the March of 1773.  Leopold’s benefactor, Archbishop von Schrattenbach had died during their absence, and been succeeded by Hieronymus von Colleredo, who appointed the young Mozart as assistant concert master.  This gave Wolfgang the chance to experiment on different musical genres; symphonies, sonatas, serenades and operas.  It was during this experimental period he developed a passion for Violin Concertos, and during his life wrote five.  In 1776, he changed direction, and started writing piano concertos.

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart had much success with his compositions, but he wanted more, than be known as a mere assistant concert master in Salzburg.

In the August of 1777, departed Salzburg for Mannheim, Paris and Munich, accompanied by his mother seeking out better employment.  On the 3rd July 1778, Wolfgang’s mother died, and he was left along in a foreign country, to find his way home, whilst his father negotiated a better court position for him.  Mozart returned home, to take up the position of Court Organist.

Wolfgang was commissioned to write an opera, for the Court of Bavaria.  In November 1780 travelled to Munich to complete the work and conduct the “Idomeneo.”

In the March of 1781, Wolfgang was summoned by Colleredo to join his entourage in Vienna.  Treated much like a servant, and rolled out to perform chamber concerts in houses of nobility, did not go down well, and he often voiced his opinions to the fact on several occasions.

A heated argument erupted between Archbishop von Colleredo and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, resulting in Mozart’s resignation being accepted.

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart settled in Vienna, at the home of Fridolin Weber, becoming a music teacher, writing music and performing concerts.

On the 4th August 1782, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart married Constanze Weber, with the approval of his mother, but his father believed his music was far more important, which led to difference of opinions regarding his forthcoming marriage.  Yet he finally gave way, and gave his son his blessing.  The couple were blessed with two children who survived infancy; Karl Thomas and Franz Xaver.

In the latter part of 1782 and early 1783, Wolfgang was influenced by the works of Johannes Sebastian Bach and George Frederic Handel, resulting in several Baroque styles compositions… (The Magic Flute).

He became friends with Joseph Haydn and often performed together, and went on to write six quartets dedicated to Haydn.

The opera “Die Entfuhrung” became popular, bolstering Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s name throughout Europe.

In 1784, he became a Freemason, and was well regarded by the secret society.  Freemasonry influenced much of his compositions.

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart went on to compose some 600 works or more, lived an extravagant lifestyle, more associated with nobility.  By the latter part of the 1780’s Wolfgang and Constanze found themselves falling into serious financial difficulties.  To turn his finances about, he needed court appointment, as he had been borrowing from fellow Freemasons to retain his extravagant lifestyle.

In 1785 Wolfgang collaborated with Lorenzo da Ponte, composing “The Marriage of Figaro” which premiered in Venice and Prague in 1786.  With such success the pair wrote “Don Giovanni” which premiered in 1787.

In the December of 1787, Emperor Joseph II appointed Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart as chamber composer.  This income was most welcomed, as he was struggling with debt.

On the 18th November 1791, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart conducted the dedication for the new Masonic Temple.  Just a few days later, on the 5th December he died in Vienna, Austria.

Wallpaper Image