Winter 2010 Rising Point


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Winter 2010 Rising Point

  1. 1. INTERNATIONAL MASONIC REVIEW PUBLISHED BY BONISTEEL MASONIC LIBRARY BONISTEELML.ORG Volume 20. Issue 1 • • WINTER 2010 Special Issue! Ann Arbor Masonic Authors US $9.95 09 The publications of The Rising Point are dedicated to Freemasonic information and education and is available in electronic vision as PDF file and you can download for free. Winter 2010
  2. 2. Volume 20. Issue 1 • Volume 20. Issue 1 • • WINTER 2010 • WINTER 2010 Contents Volume 20. Issue 1 - WINTER 2010 FEATURE ARTICLES THE RISING POINT 3 Bonisteel Masonic Library fREEMASONRY IN ANN ARBOR Bro. Robert Blackburn Ann Arbor, Detroit. 6 E-mail: MICHIGAN MASONIC MUSEUM By Seymour Greenstone 9 ROSCOE O. BONISTEEL By Karl Grube 1 MASONIC RITUAL By Justin Krasnoff 0 Bro. Mitchell Ozog , 32º Bro. Karl Grube, Ph.D., 32º Editor 10 INTERNET MASONIC RUMORS Editor in Chief. By Sean Dykhouse 5 LAYOUT DESIGN – Bro. Mitchell Ozog fREEMASONRY IN TAIWAN By Shih-Ho (Simon) Chao THE RISING POINT is the official publication of Bonisteel Masonic Library and is published four times per year. Masonic 6 Bodies are welcome to reprint from this publication provided that the article is reprinted in full, the name of the author and the source of the article are indicated, and a copy of the publication containing the reprint is sent to the editor. Submissions to this publication and all Correspondence concerning this publication should come through the Editor Mitchell Ozog. The Editor reserves the right to edit all materials received. jUDGE AUGUSTUS WOODWARD Fair Use Notice: By Richard H. Sands 36 The Bonisteel Masonic Library web site and publication THE RISING POINT may at times contain copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democracy, scientific, and social justice issues, etc.. We believe this constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section HISTORY Of UNION LODGE # 3 107 of the US Copyright Law. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site or the publication Rising Point for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use’, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner. In accordance By William Krebaum 4 with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on The Bonisteel Masonic Library web site and publication Rising Point is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information go to: United States Code: Title 17, Section 107 Notwithstanding the provisions of HISTORY Of GOLDEN RULE sections 106 and 106A, the fair use of a copyrighted work, including such use by reproduction in copies or phonorecords or by any other means specified by that section, for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching (including By Jerry Preston multiple copies for classroom use), scholarship, or research, is not an infringement of copyright. In determining whether 48 the use made of a work in any particular case is a fair use the factors to be considered shall include - (1) the purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of a commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes; (2) the nature of the copyrighted work; (3) the amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work YORK RITE Of WASHTENAW as a whole; and (4) the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work. The fact that a work is unpublished shall not itself bar a finding of fair use if such finding is made upon consideration of all the above factors. By Paul Howell ADVERTISING RATES: 010 $5.00 for a business card $50.00 for a quarter page per issue $100.00 for half page per issue $50.00 for full page per issue BONISTEEL MASONIC LIBRARY fUND RAISER The Bonisteel Masonic Library of Ann Arbor Detroit has established a goal of raising $5,000 for 2010 operations. Your contribution will assure the continuance of our award winning quarterly publication Rising Point and the yearly costs of online publication. Simple scroll down to Pay Pal on the Index page donate by using a credit card. THE RISING POINT - WINTER 2010
  3. 3. Volume 20. Issue 1 • • WINTER 2010 Freemasonry - it’s history and Future - in ann arbor, michigan Bro. WM Robert Blackburn Freemasons have been gathering in Ann Arbor for more than 180 years. The names of their members – including Zina P. King, Roscoe Bonisteel, and Charles E. Hiscock – grace many of the city’s street signs and public buildings. Ann Arbor’s most important institution and economic powerhouse, the University of Michigan, was even conceived by a Freemason and, at its inception in Detroit in 1817, largely financed by Freemasons. It may come as a surprise to some, therefore, that Ann Arbor’s Masons are finding themselves forced to sell their temple and 4.65 acre lot located at 2875 West Liberty Street. Freemasonry in Ann Arbor, as in so many other communities, is at a crossroad. It remains to be seen how, and in what form, it will continue. Masons first began meeting in Ann Arbor in 1824 at Allen’s Tavern, known also as “Bloody Corners.” This building once stood near the northwest corner of Main and Huron Streets. It was also at this site that the village’s first Mason- ic lodge, Western Star No. 6, was chartered in 1827. Those present at the celebratory ball included Gen. Lewis Cass, Governor of Michigan Territory and Grand Master of Masons in Michigan, Territorial Judge James Witherell, and Judge Samuel Dexter, a founding member of the lodge and the man after which nearby Dexter, Michigan is named. Despite its auspicious start, Western Star No. 6 dissolved within two years, being collateral damage of the “Morgan Affair.” Indeed, Ann Arbor, for a time, became a hotbed of sorts of anti-Masonry. Ann Arbor’s first newspaper, The Western Emigrant, was only five issues old when former Freemasons John Allen and Judge Dexter purchased it in December 1829. Intimidation may have played a part in the sale. Thomas Simpson, the original owner and editor, had responded curtly to an earlier letter sent to him by Dexter in the paper’s inaugural issue. Apparently Dexter had unspecified “concerns” regarding the Emigrant’s bias and position on Freemasonry. Simpson is known to have been a Democrat which, at the time, suggests that he may also have been a Freemason – a fact Dexter himself, formerly of Western Star No. 6, might have known with certainty. There was, however, no ques- tion where the Emigrant stood once Allen and Dexter took the reins. The paper became an open and continuous rant against Freemasonry, with the bulk of the columns devoted to anti-Masonry. At least initially, readership declined by as much as 80 percent. In response, Allen and Dexter made it a point to spitefully disclose the identities of Masons who sent in cancellation letters. THE RISING POINT - WINTER 2010 3
  4. 4. Volume 20. Issue 1 • • WINTER 2010 Allen sold his interest in the Emigrant to Dexter in January 1831. That same year, Judge Dexter ran for Territorial Delegate to U.S. Congress as an “Anti-Mason.” Though he managed to carry Washtenaw County, he lost in the wider election to Austin E. Wing on the Democratic-Masonic ticket. Dexter’s fervor for Anti-Masonry faded with his defeat. Instead, he redoubled his interest in his other pet cause, temperance, no doubt alienating an even more dangerous segment of Ann Arbor’s population, its saloon keepers and their patrons. Freemasonry’s public image began to improve after 1832 when President Andrew Jackson, a Democrat and Past Grand Master of Masons in Tennessee, was re-elected to the White House. Nevertheless, the Grand Lodge of Michi- gan did not reorganize until 1844 and Ann Arbor did not have a new Masonic lodge until 1847. Oriental No. 15 met on the third floor of a commercial building located at 109 N. Main Street (“The Orient” variously described as a bar or barbershop/cigar store, was located on the first floor. It took its name from Oriental the lodge and was later im- mortalized in a glee club song, “I want to go back to Michigan”). A related Masonic organization, Washtenaw Chapter No. 6, Royal Arch Masons joined Oriental there in 1850. Oriental No. 15, like Western Star before it, suffered from bad luck. By 1856, it had succumbed to the twin blows of Gold Rush fever and internal discord. It was replaced by a new lodge, Ann Arbor No. 85. In 1865, two new Masonic organizations joined those at 109 N. Main Street: Golden Rule Lodge No. 159 (1865); Ann Arbor Commandery No. 13, Knights Templar (1865). In 1867, a separate, African-American Masonic club, St. Mary’s Lodge No. 9 (now No. 4), Prince Hall Masons, was founded. Prince Hall Masons, and their affiliated organizations, trace their origin to 1775 when Prince Hall, a free African-American, was initiated into Masonry by an Irish military lodge stationed in Boston. Until 1997, when the Grand Lodge of Michigan and Grand Lodge of Michigan, Prince Hall Masons, agreed to “recognize” each other, the two organizations had no fraternal interactions in Ann Arbor. By 1869, Ann Arbor’s several Masonic bodies had outgrown Oriental’s old quarters. Ann Arbor No. 85 was reluctant to move; it held the lease on the meeting rooms and claimed possession of all the furnishings. Washtenaw Chapter No. 6, R.A.M. shifted its meetings to the nearby Odd Fellows Hall. What happened next remains the subject of debate. The Commandery and Golden Rule No. 159 leased the third floor of 215-217 South Main Street, then under construc- tion (a skull and cross, alluding to the building’s Masonic past, still ornament two windows). While Ann Arbor No. 85 debated joining them, their charter document – required for Masonic meetings to take place – was found to have been stolen from its frame. Though an injustice had clearly occurred, Michigan’s Grand Lodge refused to intercede. Ann Arbor No. 85 was forced to dissolve and a new lodge, Fraternity No. 262, was organized to replace it. Meanwhile, Ann Arbor No. 85’s property was transferred to Golden Rule No. 159, who promptly carried it to Freemasonry’s new South Main Street address. Freemasons occupied 215-217 South Main Street for 16 years, taking over the second floor as a club room. In 1885, the two Masonic lodges, Chapter, and Commandery agreed to significantly upgrade their lodgings. Together they leased the third floor of the new “St. James Building” (later known as the “Masonic Building”), on the northwest corner of Main and Huron Streets. By sheer coincidence, Ann Arbor’s Freemasons had returned to their starting place, back where Allen’s Tavern once stood. The Masons spent freely on their hall, ensuring that it was beautifully decorated and had every luxury for the period. Albert Sorg, a member of Fraternity No. 262, even painted a series of frescoes around the lodge room. Between 1894 and 1922 the number of Masons in Ann Arbor grew markedly. Five new Ma- sonic organizations joined those at the St. James Building: Ann Arbor Chapter No. 122, Order of the Eastern Star; Ann Arbor Masonic Mutual Benefit Association (an early insurance company for Masons); Order of DeMolay; Ann Ar- bor Council No. 86, Royal and Select Masters. On the University of Michigan campus, there was The Craftsmen Club, the Masons of the University of Michigan Law School, and Acacia Fraternity which, though it is no longer a Masonic, was founded at the University of Michigan in 1905 by and for Freemasons. Lastly, the Zal Gaz Grotto, Caldron No. 7, M.O.V.P.E.R., and its sister body, the Daughters of Mokanna, took up their own meeting place in Ann Arbor. The early 20th-century witnessed a period of grand Masonic construction in America. By 1910, Ann Arbor Masons had selected 327 South Fourth Street as the location for a new, exclusively Masonic meeting place. Albert Rousseau, an architecture professor at the University of Michigan, designed the building in the art deco style. The building’s cornerstone was laid in 1922; three years later it was ready to be occupied. On February 27, 1925, five thousand THE RISING POINT - WINTER 2010 4
  5. 5. Volume 20. Issue 1 • • WINTER 2010 people turned out for the dedication ceremony. But trouble was already in the air. By year’s end, the Temple Asso- ciation, which held title to the building, reported that it had insufficient funds to payoff its contractors. Though this short-term problem was resolved, and a third Masonic Lodge, Ann Arbor No. 544, took up residence at the Temple in 1926, financial problems persisted and, indeed, became worse with the onset of the Great Depression in 1929. By 1940, the Temple Association was broke and unable to pay its property taxes. A new Temple Association was quickly organized and managed to repurchase the building at its foreclosure sale in 1944. Five years later, the Masons again owned their temple free and clear. Between 1948 and 1959, two new Masonic organizations appeared in Ann Arbor: Arbor Shrine No. 54, White Shrine of Jerusalem; Ann Arbor Assembly, Order of the Rainbow Girls; and several new Masonic clubs, including the Washt- enaw Shrine and the Scottish Rite Clubs. New members and Masonic groups, however, did not translate into greater financial stability. By 1956, the Temple Association was forced to lease portions of its building to make ends meet, beginning with the basement dining room and later the auditorium and club room. This arrangement continued through 1964. By 1972, the Temple Association was again facing the prospect of foreclosure. The Masons hoped to sell their temple for $300,000 and rent the fourth floor, as lodge space, from the new owner. Such was not to be. In order to obtain additional parking space for a new federal court and office building, the U.S. General Services Admin- istration seized the Masons’ temple and demolished it in 1975. After a protracted legal battle, the Temple Association received only $120,000 for its loss; worse for the City of Ann Arbor, an architectural gem had been traded for a patch of black asphalt. The Masons could not afford to replicate the building they had lost. They purchased some undeveloped land along West Liberty and erected the current Masonic temple on the site. In 1978, at the time of the building’s dedication, only eight Masonic groups were left to share it: Golden Rule No. 159; Fraternity No. 262; Ann Arbor No. 544; Ann Arbor Chapter No. 122, O.E.S.; Arbor Shrine No. 54, White Shrine of Jerusalem; Washtenaw Chapter No. 6, R.A.M.; Ann Arbor Council No. 86, R. S.M.; Ann Arbor Commandery No. 13, K.T. (the last three also known as York Rite Masonry). During the 1920s, when participation was at its height, Golden Rule No. 159 had as many as 1,036 mem- bers and Fraternity No. 262 had up to 726. Today, only five of these Masonic clubs remain - Golden Rule No. 159 with 194 members, Ann Arbor-Fraternity No. 262 with 251, and the three York Rite bodies draw even smaller numbers from around Washtenaw County. Additionally, the Zal Gaz Grotto continues to meet in its building at 2070 West Sta- dium Boulevard, while St. Mary’s Lodge No. 4, Prince Hall Masons, numbering 48 members, meets at Bethel A.M.E. Church, located at 900 John A. Woods Drive. Despite their setbacks and diminished membership, local Masons remain optimistic about the fraternity’s future in Ann Arbor. According to Seymour Greenstone, Secretary for Ann Arbor-Fraternity Lodge No. 262, “It remains to be seen how much the success of Masonry depends on occupying an identi- fiable building. Ann Arbor-Fraternity Lodge has seen a significant increase in new members in the last five years, mostly young men in their twenties and thirties. These young members are seriously interested in the philosophy and ethical foundations of Masonry and come to the fraternity well-read and with great enthusiasm. If this trend continues, I have no worry about a vibrant future for Freemasonry in Ann Arbor.” For the time being, the groups that shared Ann Arbor’s Masonic Temple will be going their separate ways. Golden Rule No. 159 will remain at the Temple until it is sold, the York Rite Masons have moved to nearby Ypsilanti, Michigan’s Masonic Temple, while Ann Arbor-Fraternity No. 262 is holding its meetings at a private hall, known as Hathaway’s Hideaway, on South Ashley Street. Nevertheless, someday, it is hoped, these bodies may again be united not only in spirit, but in place as well. Bro. Robert Blackburn is a member of Dalkey Lodge No. 262, Grand Lodge of Ireland, Middleton-Ionic No. 180 Benjamin Franklin No. 83, F. A.M. of Wisconsin, and Ann- Arbor Fraternity No. 262, F. A.M. of Michigan THE RISING POINT - WINTER 2010 5
  6. 6. Volume 20. Issue 1 • 33 Ill. Brother Seymour D. Greenstone, • WINTER 2010 o Spring Reunion Class Honoree A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE MICHIGAN Illustrious Brother Seymour D. Greenstone, 33o, has been named Class Honoree for the MASONIC MUSEUM AND LIBRARY Open 346th Reunion of the 32o Masons of the Valley en’s of Detroit to be held April 21st and April 22nd, 2006, at the Shrine Convention Center in our Southfield, Michigan. Illustrious Brother Seymour was born in Detroit on March 22, 06 1935. He attended the Detroit public schools and graduated from Thomas M. Cooley High School. Brother Seymour received un- Bro. Seymour D. Greenstone, P.M. 33º dergraduate and graduate degrees in political science from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. In 1957, he was commis- The purpose of this essay is to document the evolution and establishment of the Michigan Masonic Museum and sioned a Second Lieutenant, U.S. Army, and attained the rank of Major, U.S. Army Reserve. He served thirty years in Federal Service, all but three in Washington, D.C. Of the thirty years, the Library, an activity of the Masonic Foundation of Michigan, Inc. last sixteen were in the Senior Executive Service. Most were in the White House Office of Management and Budget where he 5 attained the position of Deputy Assistant Director. Brother Seymour also served as Deputy Assistant Director of the Con- Early History gressional Budget Office when it was formed in 1975. He served as the Environmental Protection Agency’s first Director of Man- agement and Organization, assisting Administrator William D. Bro. Greenstone Ruckelshaus in the design of the agency’s organizational and pro- A Museum and library function has been a principal responsibility of the cedural systems. He concluded his Federal Service, returning to the EPA a second time during the Reagan Administration to serve stated: Masonic Foundation of Michigan, Inc., since its inception on June 27, as a Deputy Assistant Administrator. Arbor in 1957 In age of twenty-one while a graduate student 1980. at the fact, the first stated function in the Foundation’s By-Laws is “to “I have been blessed both in my Our Illustrious Brother was initiated in Fraternity Lodge in Ann establish, erect, support, maintain, and operate a museum and library at U of M. He was honored to serve as Master of his Lodge and as head of various Scottish and York Rite Bodies. He has served professional and Masonic careers. first Chairman of the Strategic Planning Committee, and is a Past open to the general public and dedicated to with their related facilities as President of the Masonic Foundation of Michigan, was the Masonry has provided a priceless Master of the Michigan Lodge of Research. Ill. Brother Seymour dimension to my life. While I continue served as purposes and history of Masonic fraternal organizations throughout the Thrice Potent Master of the Detroit Lodge of Perfec- tion in 1995, and was coronetted an Honorary Member of the to enjoy my participation, my principle theasState the Board of Trustees in 1999 the United States of America and the world...” of Michigan, and 2000. Supreme Council in 1997. Brother Seymour served the Valley of mission now is to help assure there is a legacy in the future for young Detroit President of nswer In its early years the activity consisted largely of the collection of Ill. Brother Greenstone stated: “I have been blessed both in Masons and their families. That is rs and James Fairbairn Smith, noted Michigan Masonic writer. The collection my professional and Masonic careers. Masonry has pro- vided a priceless dimension to my life. While I continue to why I advocate the positions I our assure there is a legacy in the future for young at the Michigan Masonic Home in Alma, also used was housed in space Masons and do. Masonry has a wonderful enjoy my participation, my principle mission now is to help as ahas a wonderful contribution to make to our soci- Foundation’s Board of Trustees. The collection meeting place for the their families. That is why I advocate the positions I do. Masonry contribution to make to was kept intact, provided minimum maintenance, and had items added from ety.” our society.” time-to-time. This was accomplished largely through the efforts of Robert N. Osborne, PGM, 2006 * Valley Voice 3 as Grand Secretary of the Grand Lodge and Secretary of the April who served Foundation Board and Allison D. Bryant, P.M., a professional librarian; Mr. Bryant, who was Past Master of the Michigan Lodge of Research and had a continuing interest in Masonic scholarship, provided the professional support to the collection, including an effort to catalog it. A Revival of Interest It was during the term of Donald J. Van Kirk as Grand Master in 1996 that a vigorous effort was initiated to upgrade the museum and library function as a serious activity of Michigan Masonry. Most Worshipful Brother Van Kirk had been one of the founders of the Michigan Lodge of Research. He provided valuable impetus and support to the work of Seymour D. Greenstone, P.M., and Rodney D. Bedwell, P.M., then president and vice president, respectively, of the Michigan Masonic Foundation, who undertook and led the effort as a “labor of love”. The nucleus of the Library holdings include the James Fairbairn Smith collection from Alma, the Charles P. Sheffield Collection housed at the Grand Rapids Masonic Center, the complete archives and associated materials of The Masonic World (published in Detroit, 1935-1997), obtained in 2000, and various collectibles. Initial Steps The initial campaign for the establishment of the current Museum and Library began in 1996 when, as indicated earlier, the leadership of the Board of Trustees of the Masonic Foundation launched their effort. Not all were supportive and considerable opposition had to be overcome. With the approval of the Foundation Board, Greenstone submitted a Resolution to Grand Lodge on February 24, 1997 for consideration at the 1997 Annual Communication of the Grand Lodge. It was key to launching the effort to establish a significant presence for the Museum and Library. The Resolution called for a sum not to exceed $50,000 to authorize the retention of the services of a professional architectural firm to develop plans for the future Michigan Masonic Library and Museum. It was adopted by the Delegates. THE RISING POINT - WINTER 2010 6
  7. 7. Volume 20. Issue 1 • • WINTER 2010 Allison D. Bryant, P.M., a professional librarian, was retained as a consultant to the Foundation Board on November 15, 1997 to follow-up on the Resolution adopted at Grand Lodge. Al performed a yeoman task in surveying the library situation at the Masonic Home in Alma and Identifying analytical and design expertise. Consequently, Greenstone introduced a Resolution at the Foundation Board, which was adopted on June 29, 1998. The resolution authorized the retention of Fishbeck, Thompson, Carr and Huber, leading library architects in Michigan, to complete a feasibility study “to assess the existing and proposed library collections, operations, and sites at the Masonic Home in Alma and to develop a space program, including an alternative site concept.” The resolution also authorized the appointment of AL Bryant as library director, half-time, replacing his consultancy agreement and provided the necessary funds. The process to take a dramatic turn when the Foundation Board received a proposal dated July 20, 1998 from the Building Manager of the Grand Rapids Masonic Center to relocate the Museum and Library to Grand Rapids. The offer from the Temple Association was to create an attractive home at the Temple adjacent to the Lodge Office. The space available would jump from about 700 square feet in Alma to from 5,000 to 7,000 square feet in Grand Rapids. After exhaustive discussions and campaigning the proposal was adopted by the Foundation at its meeting on August 31, 1998. President Greenstone then addressed a letter on September 3rd to Bernard H. Zaffern, P.M., president of the Masonic Home Board of Trustees, notifying him of the Foundation Board’s decision to transfer the library collection from Alma. The move to Grand Rapids was scheduled for October and Early November 1998. In the meantime an employment agreement had been signed on August 31st with Al Bryant as Museum and Library to commence on November 1, 1998 and expire on December 31, 2006 was signed by Greenstone as President of the Masonic Foundation and executed on October 9, 1998. Subsequent Events and Highlights The Museum and Library was moved to its new location in Grand Rapids at the end of 2000. An employment arrangement for the year 200 was approved for a museum and Library Director and a part-time Museum Specialist. The Foundation Board approved an initial budget request for $130,000 for the fiscal year 2000-2001 at its June 2000 meeting. It was decided that a separate governing group was needed to oversee to oversee the initial operation of the Museum and Library, reporting to the Foundation Board. Such a board was named, consisting of Seymour D. Greenstone P.M., and Charles P. Sheffield, P.M. Larry M Dillon, P.M., George C. Sellars, P.M., and Charles P. Sheffield, P.M. One of the highlights of the Museum and Library’s early existence was the signing of an agreement with the Grand Lodge of the Order of Odd Fellows of Michigan to house its archival materials. One of the objectives of our activity was to serve as a prime collection documenting the American Fraternal Movement (1860-1940). Recent years have witnessed increasing difficulty in providing the needed financial support for the Museum and Library operation. Tough times ensued as a result of the investment downturn in 2001 and afterward. It became more and more difficult for the Masonic Foundation Board to provide the needed support. Contributions by Lodges around the State were uneven and unpredictable. Fund-raising attempts, especially in the Grand Rapids area led by a prominent Mason Walter Russel, were not particularly productive. Library Board chairman Greenstone introduced proposals at both 2000 and 2001 Annual Communications of the Grand Lodge for a $2 annual assessment to be paid by each Michigan Mason as part of his dues. In 2001 Greenstone made a presentation to the assembled Delegates urging approval of the assessment to assure continued operation of an outstanding fraternal and cultural resource in the State of Michigan. While the proposal passed each time with significant affirmative majorities it failed of passage each time due to the two-thirds requirement. Finally, a proposal for a $2 annual assessment with five year duration was approved at the 2002 Annual Communication after a personal plea by then Grand Master David Bedwell, the son of one of the principal founders of the Museum and Library, Rodney Bedwell. The need for a secure financial future continues to be the most urgent priority of the Museum and Library. This Masonic treasure represents a tremendous opportunity for Michigan Masons to sponsor one of the leading Masonic educational resources in North America. So mote it be. Current Situation Currently, there are two pacing events that are a part of considering the future of the Museum and Library. First, THE RISING POINT - WINTER 2010
  8. 8. Volume 20. Issue 11•• Volume 20. Issue • WINTER 2010 • WINTER 2010 the dues assessment of $2 per Mason expires two years form this May’s Annual Communication of the Grand Lodge. This assessment is critical to financing the Museum and Library. The other is the space lease at the Grand Rapids Masonic Center that expires this coming December 31st. The Grand Rapids Masonic Temple Association at this point has decided not to vacate the Temple but to seek instead to generate additional revenue. A major complicating factor has been the recent relocation of the Grand Lodge Offices from the Grand Rapids Center to Alma. Grand Master Ruhland expressed a wish that the Museum and Library also relocate to Alma. One proposal was to clear the old hospital section of the Masonic Home adjacent to the Grand Secretary’s office. This would provide 3,100 square feet of space in contrast to almost 6,000 square feet currently utilized in Grand Rapids. An earlier offer from Pathways (the Masonic Home) of a 25-year lease for the Museum and Library was opposed by members of the Masonic Foundation Board of Trustees. The Grand Master asked the Pathways to make another offer. At the last meeting Foundation Board in 2005 the Grand Master asked the Board’s president to appoint a committee to study library and museum operations and develop recommendations for the future. The study committee, chaired by the Junior Grand Warder Michael Jungel and also consisting of Past Master Brandon Valentine and Richard Williams, met before the Board’s February 2006 meeting. It concluded that the decision was too complex to develop in a few months and requested an additional year for a complete study, including consulting outside expertise. A proposal to recommend renewal of the lease at the Grand Rapids Center for two additional years was not considered by the board. The Foundation Board meets again just prior to the Grand Lodge. It may be a critical meeting for the future of the Museum and Library. Another complicating factor is the introduction of legislation to be considered at Grand Lodge that would merge the Foundation Board with the Masonic Home Board of Trustees. A Library and Museum has been principal mission in the charter of the Masonic Foundation of Michigan. How it would fare in a merged Board is an unknown. This may be an opportune time to reassess the entire situation of the Museum and Library since it now has a track record of five to six years. The position of this writer, who obviously is not a neutral in this matter, is that reassessment may be a valuable move, especially in view of all of the complicating factors described above. However, it also needs to be remember that Masonry in Michigan posses a rich treasure in the Museum and Library. To squander it by returning it to an inaccessible location in Alma, Michigan would be a disservice to the Fraternity. Sources: Photo and text about Bro. Seymour Greenstone from Scottish Rite Valley of Detroit,Valley Voice April 2006. The Web Links to: THE MICHIGAN MASONIC MUSEUM AND LIBRARY - Michigan Masonic Charitable Foundation website - Bro. Seymour D. Greenstone, P.M Brother Seymour Greenstone was initiated in Fraternity Lodge in Ann Arbor, Michigan in 1957 at the age of twenty-one while a graduate student at U of M. He was honored to serve as Master of his Lodge and as head of various Scottish and York Rite Bodies. He has served as President of the Masonic Foundation of Michigan, was the first Chairman of the Strategic Planning Committee, and is a Past Master of the Michigan Lodge of Research. Ill. Brother Seymour served as Thrice Potent Master of the Detroit Lodge of Perfection in 1995, and was coronetted an Honorary Member of the Supreme Council in 1997. Brother Seymour served the Valley of Detroit as President of the Board of Trustees in 1999 and 2000. Currently Bro. S. Greenstone is Secretary of Ann Arbor Fraternity Lodge 262. THE RISING POINT - WINTER 2010 8
  9. 9. Volume 20. Issue 1 • • WINTER 2010 Roscoe Osmond Bonisteel PM, P.G.M. Bro. Karl W. Grube, MA, Ph.D., 32º Most Worshipful Past Grand Master Roscoe Bonisteel was an advocate for civil rights, a developer of commercial properties, a philanthropist of libraries/museums and 79th Grand Master of Masons in Michigan. He was elected by the Brotherhood of Michigan Freemasons in 1929. Roscoe Osmond Bonisteel was born in Canada at Sidney Crossing Ontario on December 23, 1888. His family moved to Rochester New York in 1891. He graduated from Harrisburg High School in Pennsylvania. He attended Dickenson College at Carlisle Pennsylvania and Law School at University of Michigan. He began the practice of law at Ann Arbor in 1912. Bonisteel’s skilled oratory in the court room quickly earned him a reputation among his colleagues. Businessmen, bankers, and politicians retained his legal services. His law practice flourished and led to the founding of an insurance company, real estate development firm, and seats on boards of directors of local banks. He served with distinction as a Captain in the US Army Air Forces in World War I and gave ample time upon his return to the American Legion. He was District Governor of Rotary and a Board member of the University Musical Society of Ann Arbor. A devoted family man, he married Lillian Coleman Rudolph in 1914 and had four daughters and a son. He became a Regent of the University of Michigan in 1946 serving until 1972, and was instrumental in the purchase of 267 acres and the master planning of North Campus in 1951, he was a staunch friend of libraries and museums, He founded the Friends’ Society of the Michigan Historical Collections, which later led to the Bentley Historical Library** and the expansion of the largest collection of library works at a public university. A great philanthropist, he was generous to Dickenson College, the University of Michigan, and Interlochen Art Academy and National Music Camp. He purchased for the University of Michigan’s Clements Library the prestigious Cass Collection. He secured bank commitments and sufficient monies to THE RISING POINT - WINTER 2010 9
  10. 10. Volume 20. Issue 1 • • WINTER 2010 initiate the 10 year Scottish Rite Northern Jurisdiction Museum of Our National Heritage project at Lexington, Massachusetts. In 1951 he and other prominent brothers personally pledged monies necessary to retire the Detroit Masonic Temple mortgage. Detroit Masonic Temple Pic - Detroit Masonic Temple, the largest and most complex of Masonic Temples in the world. The Temple features 1,007 rooms, a 14 story ritual tower, Masonic auditorium., and 10 story Shrine Temple. George D. Mason, architect/engineer of Detroit Cit, Parducci, sculpturer of Venice, and DeLorenzo, interior architect of New York City created a national treasure of Art and Architecture worthy of being recognized on theUSA National Register of Historic Places. Past Grand Master Brother Bonisteel was raised a Master Mason in Golden Rule Lodge No. 159 in 1914, served as Worshipful Master in 1920, and, following regular advancement, became the Grand Master of Michigan Free and Accepted Masons in 1929. He served as the Chairman of the Jurisprudence Committee for 25 consecutive years. He belonged to Washtenaw Chapter No. 6, Royal Arch Masons, Ann Arbor Council No. 86, R. S. M., Ann Arbor Commandery No. 13; and a Director of the Ann Arbor Masonic Temple Corporation. He received the thirty-two Scottish Rite Degrees in the Valley of Detroit in 1926. He became an honorary 33° Degree Mason in 1939, and was crowned a Scottish Rite Active Member at Detroit, September 30, 1964. http:// Brother Bonisteel was a prime “mover and shaker” in securing the funding for the Scottish Rite’s National Heritage Museum of American History. In 1966 Brother Bonisteel and the Grand Masters from Illinois and Massachusetts raised $10,000,000 for the 1976 Bi-Centennial Heritage project. http:// THE RISING POINT - WINTER 2010 10
  11. 11. Volume 20. Issue 1 • • WINTER 2010 Brother Roscoe Bonisteel was a leader in Michigan Civil Rights during the turbulent decade of the 1960’s He was a strong advocate for recognition of Prince Hall Masonry* with all of the rights and privileges of the Grand Lodge of Freemasons in Michigan through a series of Grand Lodge Resolutions at the annual meeting. His efforts were not immediately successful but raised the consciousness of the brotherhood with recognition finally coming to Prince Hall Masonry during the 1990’s. To Most Worshipful Brother Bonisteel goes the credit for the creation of the masterpiece in oil which was placed on canvas by the renowned artist Robert Thom. It preserve forever the historic September 15, 1817, meeting of Zion Lodge No. 1, Judge Augustus Woodward, Father Gabriel Richard, and Reverend John Monteith establishing the money for The University of Michigan. The original curriculum was based upon the University of France established by Napoleon Bonaparte. Trowel George Washington’s Trowel displayed at the Scottish Rite’s Northern Jurisdiction Museum of Our National Heritage, Lexington Massachusetts Trowel was used to lay the cornerstone of our Nationals Capitol. Photo By Anson Russell, In 2002 Karl W. Grube, Ph.D.*** and other prominent Ann Arbor Freemasons founded the Bonisteel Masonic Library, a non-profit educational corporation housed in the Ann Arbor Masonic Temple at 2875 W. Liberty Road Ann Arbor Michigan USA. The one hundred year old assets of the Ann Arbor Masonic Temple Library were acquired to form the initial collections for the library. The Library is organized to acquire and maintain books, documents, artifacts and other forms of information related to Freemasonry; make those materials and information to the general public; and use those materials and information to develop educational program related to Freemasonry. Upon his passing in 1972, he received full a Masonic Ritual Funeral Service at the Ann Arbor Masonic Temple, located at 327 4th Avenue Ann Arbor. In 1924 Rousseau/McConkey, Professors of Architecture Art designed the Temple. A church funeral service was also held at the Presbyterian Church. His earthly remains are entombed in a mausoleum crypt at the Washtenong Memorial Park, Ann Arbor Michigan USA. * Prince Hall Masonry was organized in Boston as African Lodge No. 429 under a Charter granted by the Grand Lodge of England in 1784. Prince Hall was a freeman and a leathersmith who was assigned to General Gage’s Regiment of the British Military in North America. He was first “Made a Mason” in General Gage’s Boston Military Masonic Lodge. ** This paper was adapted from the Roscoe O. Bonisteel personal papers of the Bentley Historical Library, Michigan Historical Collections, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor Michigan, 1974. Further research was conducted in the official records of the Ann Arbor Masonic Temple Corporation, Grand Lodge of Free Accepted Masons of the State of Michigan, Golden Rule Lodge No. 159 and the Bonisteel Masonic Library. Karl W. Grube, Ph.D. is a former professor of Education, Architecture Urban Planning at the University of Michigan. He is President of the Bonisteel Masonic Library, Trustee of the Detroit Masonic Temple Library, a 40+ year member of Ann Arbor Fraternity Lodge No 262, Member of Union Lodge of Strict Observance No. 3, Michigan Mason of the Year, a 25+ year Scottish Rite Mason, Member of the Michigan Lodge of Research Information No. 1 and a Member of the scholarly Masonic Society. THE RISING POINT - WINTER 2010 11
  12. 12. Volume 20. Issue 1 • • WINTER 2010 Bro. Justin F. Krasnoff, P.M. THE RISING POINT - WINTER 2010 1
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  19. 19. Volume 20. Issue 1 • • WINTER 2010 Bro. Justin F. Krasnoff, P.M. was raised in Ann Arbor Fraternity Lodge # 262 in 1986 and he served as Worshipful Master in 1992, 2000, and 2001 Bro. Krasnoff also is a member of Olive Lodge #156, Chelsea. In 1987 he joined the Scottish Rite of Freemasonry Valley of Detroit and he is currently the Commander- in-Chief of Detroit Consistory Bro. Krasnoff also belong to the Chapter, Council, and the Shrine. Advertisement NORTH BROTHERS 734-421-1300 OPEN MONDAY - SATURDAY MIKE ZIMNICKI New Pre-Owned Vehicle Sales Leasing Consultant SPECIAL OFFER FROM MIKE ZIMNICKI FREE OIL CHANGE Bring in this ad and receive a free oil change when you purchase any new vehicle from me. THE RISING POINT - WINTER 2010 19
  20. 20. Volume 20. Issue 1 • • WINTER 2010 THE TOP 10 INTERNET MASONIC RUMORS Michigan Lodge of Research Information #1 • Presented February, 2007 Bro. Sean Dykhouse, P.M. RUMOR #1. RUMOR #7. That there is a Global Conspiracy, That Free Accepted Masons often called the Illuminati, ruled Guard Their Secrets Until Death, by Freemasons, which exerts and Murder Anyone Attempting to control over the Planet Earth its Reveal The Secret Rituals. Politics. RUMOR #8. RUMOR #2. The Streets of Washington DC That there is a Political Conspiracy, That Freemasons designed run by Free Accepted Masons, the street map of America’s controlling the American Political capital city to include occult and Structure through Masonic extraterrestrial symbols. Presidents. RUMOR #9. RUMOR #3. Mind control air raid sirens That That Free Accepted Masons Masonic buildings incorporate the use Worship the Devil, or, alternately, are of mind control devices or broadcast Anti-Christian. interference designed to disrupt natural human thought. RUMOR #4. RUMOR #10. That Free Accepted Masons are Bedoper That Freemasons are part of an Anti-Catholic. inter-galactic conspiracy brought about by reptilian extraterrestrial beings. RUMOR #5. More on page 21 That Freemasonry is a front for White Supremacy Organizations like the Ku Klux Klan or American Nazi Party. RUMOR #6. That Freemasons flagrantly wave their world domination in front of citizens by hidden messages on the United States One Dollar Bill. THE RISING POINT - WINTER 2010 0
  21. 21. Volume 20. Issue 1 • • WINTER 2010 RUMOR #1. That there is a Global Conspiracy, often called the Illuminati, ruled by Freemasons, which exerts control over the Planet Earth its Politics. One of the most common question outsiders ask about our fraternity when conspiracies come into conversation is “Does the Trilateral Commission control the Freemasons?” or “Do the Freemasons control the Trilateral Commission?” You may insert the name of your favorite political club or society here as well, The Club of Rome, The John Birch Society, PeTA, or any other organization. There are more than 500 influential “think tanks” around the world; the Trilateral Commission is one of them. Most of these groups are open to public membership, many are by invitation only, and all of them have their own particular agendas and issues. To date, not one of these organizations, while politically- or societally-driven, are directly run or controlled by Masonic groups. Most of them are controlled by Political Action Campaign money, or through private funding. RUMOR #2. That there is a Political Conspiracy, run by Free Accepted Masons, controlling the American Political Structure through Masonic Presidents. GEORGE WASHINGTON (1732-1799) First President (1789-1797) JAMES MONROE (1758-1831) Fifth President (1817-1825) ANDREW JACKSON (1767-1845) Seventh President (1829-1837) JAMES K. POLK (1795-1849) Eleventh President (1845-1849) JAMES BUCHANAN (1791-1868) Fifteenth President (1857-1861) ANDREW JOHNSON (1808-1875) Seventeenth President (1865-1869) JAMES A. GARFIELD (1831-1881) Twentieth President (1881) WILLIAM McKINLEY (1843-1901) Twenty-fifth President (1897-1901) THEODORE ROOSEVELT (1858-1919) Twenty-sixth President (1901-1909) WILLIAM H. TAFT (1857-1930) Twenty-seventh President (1909-1913) WARREN G. HARDING (1865-1923) Twenty-ninth President (1921-1923) FRANKLIN D. ROOSEVELT (1882-1945) Thirty-second President (1933-1945) HARRY S. TRUMAN (1884-1972) Thirty-third President (1945-1952) GERALD R. FORD(1913-2006) Thirty-eighth President (1974-1977) RUMOR #3. That Free Accepted Masons Worship the Devil, or, alternately, are Anti-Christian. Albert Pike is the favorite “whipping boy” of modern anti-Masons, and today’s Internet is no exception. Pike is usually first portrayed as the central, guiding force behind Freemasonry, and then he is vilified. Pike’s Victorian writing style was better suited for a century ago. In one place in Morals and Dogma, Pike refers to Jesus as “the mysterious founder of the Christian Church.” This one phrase alone is the source of many criticisms online but the majority of religious claims do not involve goat riding or human sacrifice, the main of them boil down to the monotheistic claim that while, to quote scripture, “No servant can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.” That’s Gospel of Luke 16:13… There’s two common threads here – that Freemasonry violates the doctrine of monotheistic belief in God the Father, much the same way that watching the NFL on Sunday TV is having football for a false god and violating one of the ten commandments, or that Freemasonry is part of the Priory Du Scion (infamous of late courtesy of the Da Vinci Code and Eyes Wide Shut). The Priory Du Scion is linked in many conspiracy theories online with a continuation of the Merovingian Dynasty and protecting the holy bloodline of Jesus. The Merovingians were a dynasty of Frankish kings who ruled frequently fluctuating areas, within the region largely corresponding to ancient Gaul, from the fifth to the eighth THE RISING POINT - WINTER 2010 1
  22. 22. Volume 20. Issue 1 • • WINTER 2010 century. To the south, once they had absorbed the kingdoms of Burgundy and of Arles or Provence, their borderlands with the Lombards in Italy and with Septimania remained fairly stable. The baseless accusation of Satan worship goes back to the earliest days of recorded Freemasonry when—in the words of Dr. George Oliver—freemasons were: ‘...charged with the practice of forbidden arts; as for instance “raising the devil in a circle;” a common witchcraft claim. An anti-masonic letter, reproduced on page 9 of James Anderson’s Constitutions of 1738, claims: “the Freemasons in their lodges, raised the devil in a circle, and when they had done with him, laid him again with a noise or a hush, as they pleased.” RUMOR #4 That Free Accepted Mason are Anti-Catholic The 1998 publication of a document called the Alta Vendita by John Vennari, a writer for the Catholic Family News, is a collection of papers — reputedly from 1820s Alta Vendita correspondence — published by authority of Pope Pius IX. This was because in the 1800s the Catholic church condemned republicanism, and liberalism as “modernism”. A splinter Catholic group called the Carbonari, with a leadership council titled the Alta Vendita was divided into two classes: apprentices and masters. No apprentice could rise to the grade of a master before the end of six months. The members made themselves known to one another by secret signs in shaking hands. These signs for masters and apprentices were unlike. One of the underlying principles of the society, it is true, was that the “good brotherhood” rested on religion and virtue; but by this was understood a purely natural conception of religion, and the mention of religion was absolutely forbidden. In reality the association was opposed to the Church, either for it’s political or social power and requirements. Even though this group died out in the 1840s, interest in the Alta Vendita has been kept alive by such discredited conspiracy theorists. There is nothing in Vennari’s publication, or any other writings on the Alta Venditi, that proves that the group was associated in any fashion with regular Freemasonry, that it had any influence on Freemasonry, that it grew out of the Bavarian Illuminati, as some websites have claimed, or that it continues to exist in any form. RUMOR #5. That Freemasonry is a front for White Supremacy Organizations like the Ku Klux Klan or American Nazi Party. Claims have been made that Albert Pike was a high ranking member of the Ku Klux Klan. This is a claim that is impossible to either substantiate or disprove. Research into primary source material will reveal that there isn’t any primary source material. The only writings that come close to qualifying as a primary source is a booklet written by one of the Klan founders, Captain John C. Lester, in 1884, comprising his reminiscences fifteen years after the fact. The only name noted in Lester’s book is one reference to “Gen. Forrest”. This booklet was republished in 1905 with a list of names of key Klansmen included in a preface. In 1924, Ms. Susan L. Davis published her Authentic History, in which she contradicts a number of points made by Lester, denigrates Fleming for his superficial knowledge of the Klan and condemns Lester’s co-author, David L. Wilson, for suggesting the Klan had failed. Any other material promoting Albert Pike’s association with the Klan will either cite Fleming or Davis, cite other authors who cite Fleming or Davis. Both Fleming and Davis accepted, unquestioningly, the fifty year old reminiscences of several of the founding members of the Klan. There is no source documentation, corroborating evidence or other testimony to implicate Albert Pike with the Klan. Pike had been dead fourteen years when Fleming first published, and was in no position to address the issue. There are several separate claims. First, that Albert Pike was the founder of the Ku Klux Klan; second, that he was a member, or leader, of the Klan; third, that he was a racist; and fourth, that Freemasonry is the current reincarnation of the Klan. Numerous sources both online and in print demonstrate that his leadership role or membership is strictly hearsay, that his racism, while nothing to be proud of, was mild by his contemporaries’ standards and that any accusation that Freemasonry is a Klan front, or vice versa is completely unsubstantiated and unfounded. THE RISING POINT - WINTER 2010
  23. 23. Volume 20. Issue 1 • • WINTER 2010 RUMOR #6. That Freemasons flagrantly wave their world domination in front of citizens by hidden messages on the United States One Dollar Bill. First, the pyramid was not a part of the proposals for the Great Seal until the third committee. It was not suggested by Jefferson, Franklin, and Adams. As to the lighting on the East or West of the pyramid, no official explanation exists. The unfinished state of the pyramid was intentional. Charles Thompson, member of the final committee (there were three before it was proposed in its current form), in his remarks to congress about the symbolism on the Great Seal, said the pyramid represented “Strength and Duration.” The all-seeing eye, and ancient symbol for divinity was Franklin’s belief that one man couldn’t do it alone, but a group of men, with the help of God, could do anything. Although Franklin’s committee did not suggest a pyramid, it did originate the suggestion of the eye. The term “the all-seeing eye” is never used in describing it. The Franklin committee wanted the seal to include a reflection of divine providence and discussed a variety of themes including the Children of Israel in the Wilderness. Some have suggested that the pyramid and the eye are the result of Masonic influence, but the only member of the original committee who was a Mason was Franklin and this committee’s design was rejected by congress. None of the final designers of the seal was a Mason. The eye as representing “the eye of providence” has a long history. It’s more likely that both the designers of the Great Seal and the Masons both drew from that history. The use of “the all seeing eye” as uniquely Masonic first appeared in 1797, nearly 15 years after the adoption of the symbolism by Congress. RUMOR #7. That Free Accepted Masons Guard Their Secrets Until Death, and Murder Anyone Attempting to Reveal The Secret Rituals. While the obligations, penalties and signs by which a Freemason may know another from the rest of the population are secret, many critics exist online, claiming members of the fraternity will stop at nothing to keep the secret. The fictions: that from the disappearance of William Morgan affair in 1820s to the fatal shooting in New York in 2004, that members, ex-members, cowans and eavesdroppers are being silenced with brute force and threats, real and imagined, of terrible violence. The facts: that most public libraries have, or have access, to books containing the words, grips, and rituals of the Freemasons. A number of anti-masonic religious groups have taken it upon themselves to publish recent ritual books online, and one website even exists where, for $25, a visitor can purchase ritual books featuring “the secrets of masonry” online. RUMOR #8. The Streets of Washington DC That Freemasons designed the street map of America’s capital city to include occult and extraterrestrial symbol. This long-enduring myth has been gathering acceptance, no thanks to recent books (see MLRI review of David Ovason) and websites. This is similar to numerology in that if you go looking for a result, you will find it. Below is the most recent incarnation, where the earlier claims of pentagram, square and compasses have now been enlarged to include a horned alien head at the tip of the compasses. RUMOR #9. Mind control air raid sirens That Masonic buildings incorporate the use of mind control devices or broadcast interference designed to disrupt natural human thought. This is reported on several message boards and weblogs (“blogs”) as a rumor that the yellow horns or “air raid” sirens on top of the Masonic “Temple”, are emitting a sub-sonic mind controlling frequency which is imprinting command words like a hypnotists, in our sub-conscious minds and programming us to behave and operate for the benefit of the New World Order. The rumor was initially reported in THE RISING POINT - WINTER 2010 3
  24. 24. Volume 20. Issue 1 • • WINTER 2010 Richmond, Vermont, but has spread. RUMOR #10. Bedoper That Freemasons are part of an inter- galactic conspiracy brought about by reptilian extraterrestrial beings. It’s a vast collection of personal ramblings from what looks like someone’s personal schizophrenia set. There’s no direct evidence, but it is highly ranked in the online search engines when “Masonic Conspiracy” or “Freemason Secrets” are your search words. There is no longer a manifesto, although some prior archives of the website do show one. The curator appears to have a theory that international politics are driven by an agenda of reptilian aliens who hide themselves. This is classic 1950’s Science Fiction, and it’s best described in the movies “They Live” and “V” in the 1980s. Bro. Sean Dykhouse, P.M. is member of Ann Arbor Fraternity Lodge No. 262, Past Master of the Michigan Lodge of Research Information No. 1, and a 32° Scottish Rite Mason, Valley of Detroit. MASONIc cENTRAL Masonic central - the pod cast for Freemasons by Freemasons. This show is a weekly talk show on the wide world of all things Masonic, from movies and books to academia and notables. The goal of the program is to create a heightened awareness of the venerable institution. If your looking to learn more about Freemasonry, then Masonic central is the right place to be. THE RISING POINT - WINTER 2010 4
  25. 25. Volume 20. Issue 1 • • WINTER 2010 FREEMASONRY IN TAIWAN Bro. Shih-Ho (Simon) Chao, Ph.D. Freemasonry in Taiwan originated from Mainland China. The first lodge appeared in China in 1767 in Canton (Home State of Dr. Sun Yat Sen), the No. 407 Yi Lodge which belonged to the Grand Lodge of England. All the Masonic membership in that Lodge were foreigners without Masonic descent. It was not until March 18, 1949, that the Grand Lodge of China was established in Shanghai, under the sponsorship of the Grand Lodge of Philippines. However, all Masonic activities were suspended in 1951 due to civil war between Communist Government (the current Chinese Government) and KMT Government (The Government in Taiwan before 2000). The Grand Lodge was reactivated in Taipei in 1954 after the KMT Government retreated to Taiwan. Under the excellent leadership of all the Grand Masters, including many from the United States and General Chiang, son of Chiang Kai-Shek, the Lodges grew stronger. Currently, there are 13 Lodges in Taiwan, with thousands of brothers. It is worth mentioning that the No. 7 Liberty Lodge is composed of Brothers all of whom are from other countries. Some of them were already Masons in their “Mother Countries” but needed to keep their light in Masonry growing and glowing. In addition to all the Lodges, the other Masonic bodies in Taiwan include: 1) The Ali Shan Oasis Shrine Club of Taipei, working on the care and foundation of Crippled and Burned Children); 2) YangMingShan Chapter No. 5, O.E.S. The Order of the Eastern Star is not an auxiliary of the Masonic Order but is an independent organization of its own. Its members are the wives, daughters, widows, mothers and sisters of Master Masons. 3) The Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry of the Southern Jurisdiction, U.S.A. Valley of Taipei, Orient of Taiwan. There are now 816 members in total and 32 Brethren have been coroneted with the Thirty-third degree (33° ). At this time, due to the business activities between China and Taiwan, a host of Brethren have stayed in China, mostly in Shanghai. The former Worshipful Master of No. 9 Tang Lodge, the author’s Blue Lodge, just went to Shanghai on Nov. 1st, 2004, and serves as the manger of a Company. It has been proposed by some brother in Shanghai that a regular Masonic meeting be begun so that they can continue the Masonic activities. Hopefully, Masonic bodies can return to Mainland China in the near future. Bro. Shih-Ho (Simon) Chao is member of No. 9 Tang Lodge, the Grand Lodge of China, member of Ann Arbor Fraternity Lodge No. 262, and a 32° Scottish Rite Mason, Valley of Detroit. Bro. Simon Chao’s Joint Installation of the Grand Lodge of China, Taiwan. Summer , 2002 Photos by Bro. Simon THE RISING POINT - WINTER 2010 5
  26. 26. Volume 20. Issue 1 • • WINTER 2010 JUDGE AUGUSTUS WOODWARD A Freemason and Founder of the First Complete Public Education System in America Bro. Richard H. Sands, 33o, P.G.M. Emeritus Professor of Physics, University of Michigan Abstract The Fraternity of Free and Accepted Masons is the oldest existing fraternity in the world. Freemasons historically have made important and essential contributions to the War for Independence and the fabric of this country. Among the Freemasons responsible for the first public school system (elementary and intermediate with a university at its apex) in America*, including the beginnings of the University of Michigan, was Judge Augustus Woodward, the first of three federally appointed judges in the Territory of Michigan. His life, education, and contributions are traced in this paper. He made a name for himself when he represented Oliver Pollack before Congress in his case for restitution of funds expended in support of the expedition of George Rogers Clark to recapture the Northwest Territories from the British. Woodward became a close friend of Thomas Jefferson. Arriving shortly after the fire that leveled Detroit, he left his imprint on the layout of the streets of Detroit. Woodward was the only one of the civil officers to remain in Detroit during the War of 1812. He was widely read and developed a system of scientific classification and nomenclature that rivaled the best of the time. He championed the needy during and after the war of 1812 and drafted the act of 1817 that established the University of Michigania and began the first truly public school system in America*. In 1824, he lost his judgeship to “dirty” politics, but was able to clear his name and received an appointment as a judge in the new Territory of Florida, where he later died on June 12, 1827, at the age of fifty-two. His grave is unknown. The Fraternity of Free and Accepted Masons is the oldest extant fraternity in the world. Members of the Fraternity (hereinafter referred to as Freemasons or Masons) and its teachings played major roles in the War for Independence and the beginnings and evolution of this country. Among these were men such as George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, Paul Revere, Baron Von* There is one other contender for this honor - the Georgia legislature that in 1801 gave supervisory power over the public schools to the President of the University of Georgia1. To date, I have been unable to learn when and how he exercised that power or if the University of Georgia was truly public in its admissions at that time. Woodward, p.2 Steuben, Marquis de Lafayette, George Rogers Clark, John Hancock, and many others. They pledged their lives, their fortunes and their sacred honor that they and we might enjoy freedom from oppression. We are here to discuss Freemasonry in Washtenaw County. It is most appropriate that this should be done on the University of Michigan campus, because Freemasons played a significant part in the beginning of this University, albeit that the latter took place in Detroit in 1817 before it evolved to a true university in Ann Arbor in 1837. Among the Freemasons responsible for that beginning, one man stands out; namely, Augustus Woodward, the first of three federally appointed judges for the new Territory of Michigan. The origins of the Fraternity of Free and Accepted Masons are lost in antiquity. Our oral history tells us that we grew out of those operative lodges of Freemasons that built the great cathedrals of the Middle Ages; however, we have no written proof of that. We can trace it in great detail only to the meeting of four lodges in London, England, in 1717; but these were already social lodges of Freemasons. Members of the Fraternity make no pretext of learning the skills of operative Freemasonry; we simply use the tools of the operative craft to teach fundamental truths of human behavior or “morality,” if you like. THE RISING POINT - WINTER 2010 6
  27. 27. Volume 20. Issue 1 • • WINTER 2010 The Society of Free and Accepted Masons (some 3 Million strong, worldwide) is a fraternity that has built within it a system of moral instruction that is taught in the most palatable manner possible; namely, by symbols and by allegory. Every Freemason must be of mature age and profess a belief in Diety. If anyone wishes to be a member, he must ask - no Mason can invite him. The purpose of the organization is to take good men and help them to become better men by offering them these moral lessons and opportunities to practice charity in an atmosphere of brotherly love. You will hear later in this program of the history of some of these lodges of Freemasons in Washtenaw County. Because bettering oneself is a major part of Freemasonry, Freemasons have always stressed the importance of education. The first full public school systems in America and in Europe were started by Masons, and Masons were instrumental in starting many of the major colleges and universities in this country; examples are the University of Pennsylvania, the University of Michigan and the University of North Carolina. In discussing the beginnings of the University of Michigan, we need to review the life and Woodward, p. 3 works of the principal player in those beginnings; namely, Judge Augustus Woodward and the circumstances that brought him here 2. In order to keep the Northwest Territories Congress needed to populate the area. To facilitate the latter, they needed a system of laws and governance; and The Northwest Ordinance3 was the first effort in that direction. It is of note that this ordinance was adopted by the Continental Congress in 1787 before our Constitution was written. It outlawed slavery, promoted education, and provided for a governor, a secretary and three judges appointed by Congress. But the territories were vast, and the inhabitants were forced to travel inordinate distances to seek justice. As the numbers of settlers increased, new territories were broken out from the original. Finally, the Territory of Michigan was established with its own governor, secretary and three federally appointed judges of whom Augustus Woodward was one. He was born in New York in 1774 and, on November 6 in a Reformed Dutch Church, was baptized Elias Brevoort Woodward, after his maternal uncle. Elias Brevoort was one of pre-Revolutionary Manhattan’s leading citizens with a substantial estate. Woodward enrolled in Columbia College at the age of fifteen and received his A.B. degree. He read widely, was well grounded in Greek and Latin and became fluent in French. Elias Woodward later changed his name from Elias to Augustus, thinking that it better suited his personality. It was his habit to keep a small notebook in which he jotted down whatever interested him. After graduation in 1793, he took a job in Philadelphia where he was employed as a clerk in the Treasury Department. The uncle left him an inheritance of 150 English pounds. With this inheritance, he set out for the new city of Washington on the Potomac, where he invested in real estate. While in Rockbridge County in 1795, he was received in Monticello and admitted to Thomas Jefferson’s intimate circle. This was the beginning of a lasting friendship. Augustus moved to Georgetown in the District of Columbia. He became acquainted with Charles L’Enfant and his plan for Washington. On the inside cover of his notebook he pasted a copy of L’Enfant’s plan for Washington with the location of his ten properties marked. On March 23, 1801, he presented himself at the opening of the first session of the new court of the District of Columbia and was admitted to practice before it. He Woodward, p. 4 was tall, six foot three or four and was stooped with a large crop of dark hair, a narrow face and a large nose. He claimed no formal religious association, but he was never irreligious. He was on good terms with the clergy of many denominations, including Father Gabriel Richard of the Catholic faith and Reverend John Monteith of the Protestant faith. He never displayed impiety or looseness of character and was never known to use profanity. Prior to 1801, Jefferson was only the Vice-President, whose duties were minimal. Many a day, he and Woodward would sit before a warm fire discussing their theories of government and sharing books that they had read - both were voracious readers. Woodward spent a lot of time on a committee for the poor. The Washington bar of 1802 consisted of only eleven members. There was business for all; and Woodward had his share. One case, in particular, earned him distinction: his representation of Oliver THE RISING POINT - WINTER 2010
  28. 28. Volume 20. Issue 1 • • WINTER 2010 Pollock before a committee of Congress to pursue a long-standing claim for reimbursement of funds advanced to the patriotic cause during the Revolution. Pollock’s financial assistance surpassed that of any other person. That the Northwest was won and that it became a part of the United States was the result, largely, of the efforts of Oliver Pollock. He was a native of Ireland, emigrating to Pennsylvania in 1761 at the age of 24. He had a natural talent for business - whatever enterprise he attempted, it prospered. After beginning operations out of Philadelphia with West Indies ports and with New Orleans, he established his headquarters in New Orleans in 1768. The Spanish took possession of Louisiana in the following year, and he began supplying the Spanish army. He was wise enough to charge reasonable prices and not the usual profiteering. This won him the respect of the Spanish authorities who gave him free trade throughout Louisiana. Rapidly Pollock acquired considerable wealth with large land holdings near New Orleans where he established plantations with slaves to work on them, and his mercantile interests were wide spread. After the start of the Revolution, agents from Virginia appeared in New Orleans seeking supplies for the patriotic cause. Through Pollock’s intervention and influence with Spanish officials, he was able to arrange for ten thousand pounds of powder to be shipped to the colonies.Woodward, p. 5 From Detroit, the British unleashed their Indian allies in a wave of terror. In order to stop this Indian menace, George Rogers Clark proposed a plan to mount an expedition against the Illinois country, which was not strongly held, and then to move against Detroit.. It took a steady flow of supplies to enable Clark to execute his plan. From New Orleans, Pollock sent boatload after boatload of food, powder, blankets and clothing up the Mississippi, using his own funds. As the demands increased, he mortgaged his lands and slaves, and advanced more than $300,000, much of it pledged against his personal credit. Clark’s victory was an expensive one for Pollock, and he became a ruined man. Payment was demanded by his Spanish creditors and they imprisoned him in a debtor’s jail in Havana. Repeatedly, he appealed to Virginia and Congress for relief. He became concerned when some individuals claimed that the obligation contracted by Virginia was not binding on the Federal government. He retained Woodward to secure recognition of his rights to payment. Woodward’s arguments and the justice of Pollock’s cause prevailed. Pollock eventually received all but some $9,000 of his claim. Just as importantly, Woodward’s involvement in this case peaked his interest in the Northwest Territories and, undoubtedly, was a factor in his acceptance of public service in that part of the country when he was offered it by Jefferson. In Detroit on Tuesday, June 11, 1805, a driver hitching up his cart to get a fresh supply of flour, knocked out his pipe, and a live coal was blown into the hay. In less than two hours, the whole town was in flames and all that remained of the town were charred chimneys. Fortunately, no lives were lost and only two were injured: an elderly woman and a young child. The destruction was total; only the old Block House survived. Woodward knew nothing of this when he arrived in Detroit on June 30. Woodward’s fame had preceded him; the citizens made it clear that Woodward represented a community hope. Detroit needed a figure of authority. Since the fire, the citizens had bickered among themselves about when and how they should start to rebuild. The new governor, William Hull, accompanied by his secretary, Stanley Griswold, arrived from Albany later the next day. The following morning, as his first official act, Hull administered the oaths of office to Secretary Griswold and Justices Woodward and Bates, the former assuming the office of chief justice by virtue of an earlier commission. Hull had been sworn in enroute by the Vice-President, George Clinton. Woodward, p. 6 Hull, Woodward and Bates formed themselves into a land board to plan a layout for the new city. They asked the populace to wait patiently. Woodward was chosen as a committee of one to layout the new Detroit. It was a year and a half before Woodward’s plan was completed, and you can see L’Enfant’s imprint. The plan consisted of an equilateral triangle with 4,000 foot sides, divided into six sections by a perpendicular line from every angle bisecting the opposite side, with squares, circuses and other open spaces where six avenues and where twelve avenues intersect, large circular plazas one thousand feet in diameter, were connected and intersected by north-south and east-west grand avenues, each two hundred feet wide. From each of the hub-like plazas or circuses, eight other avenues would radiate like spokes of a wheel. These were one hundred THE RISING POINT - WINTER 2010 8
  29. 29. Volume 20. Issue 1 • • WINTER 2010 and twenty feet wide and connected at intervals by sixty-foot wide streets. The grand circuses were intended to be sites for public buildings, churches, schools - all the space to be landscaped, adorned with fountains and statuary, and lined with trees. The base of the first triangular unit paralleled the river for four thousand feet. The apex of the original was at the present Grand Circus Park and the intersection of the avenues which would have bisected its angles can still be seen at the Campus Martius. The first unit was designed for fifty thousand. It could easily be enlarged by adding a second or third triangle by making one side of the original triangle, the base of the new one. This was a city plan beyond the understanding of the frontier citizens who had never seen a European city and could not appreciate an advanced idea of scientific planning. After eleven years, Woodward’s plan was abandoned. If Detroit had followed this, it would be the envy of other cities without the congestion of today. (From the hand-written minutes4 of Zion Lodge, we learn that Augustus B. Woodward was made a Freemason on September 5, 1808, in Zion Lodge #1, chartered under the Grand Lodge of A.F.A.M. of New York. He was proposed by Brother Scott, elected to receive, and received the Entered Apprentice degree the same night. He was passed to the Fellowcraft degree on October 3, 1808; however, he had a series of excused absences from Zion Lodge until September 4, 1809. He was raised to the sublime degree of a Master Mason on October 14, 1809.) By 1808, the intention of the British for war was apparent. The unrest of the Indians was being secretly encouraged by the British. War with Britain was Woodward, p. 7 inevitable. The only question was when? Appeals to the federal government to reinforce the frontier fell on deaf ears until 1811. Hull chose this time to return to Massachusetts for the winter of 1811-12; but before his leave expired, he spent several months in Washington discussing defense arrangements. Governor Hull, now Brigadier General Hull, returned to Michigan Territory in July, 1812, as commander-in-chief of an army of two thousand men consisting of three regiments of Ohio volunteers and one regiment of regulars. War with Great Britain was declared while Hull was marching from Urbana, Ohio. The army’s objective was an immediate invasion of Canada, the capture of Fort Malden, and the occupation of the country as far east as the Thames River. Hull’s subordinates included the three colonels of the Ohio regiments, McArthur, Findlay and Lewis Cass, all of whom urged an immediate invasion of Canada. Hull delayed until he received orders from Washington, and not until July 12 did the army cross the river. Hull showed no inclination to do more, refusing to attack Malden (see Figure 1 below). While Hull was delaying, the British were actively reinforcing. In the North, an enemy expedition took Mackinac by surprise on July 17. Following this, the Indians swarmed to the British side. Hull respected the British, but feared the Indians and on August 8 he ordered his troops back across the river and on the same day his orders reached the small garrison at Fort Dearborn to evacuate. The soldiers and their families marched out of that fort and were ambushed by the savages, many brutally massacred and most taken prisoner. At the same time, Major General Isaac Brock took command of Fort Malden. Playing upon Hull’s fears, he demanded Detroit’s surrender, hinting that he might have trouble restraining the Indians. He planted a battery opposite Detroit and began to bombard the town. On the morning of August 16, Brock dressed a few of his militiamen as British regulars to make his force appear stronger, then transported them across the river and, with Tecumseh’s braves howling around the stockade, marched toward the town. To the disgust of his troops, Hull ran up the white flag, surrendering unconditionally without firing a shot. Brock left two hundred and fifty men under the command of Colonel Henry Proctor, and decreed that American laws should remain in effect. Hull as a prisoner of war was carried off to Montreal. The Ohio volunteers were sent home under parole. Before long Hull was exchanged, tried by court martial, convicted of cowardice and sentenced to death. Woodward was the only one of the original civic officers to remain in Detroit; and since the British decreed that American law would continue to prevail, Proctor (without consulting Woodward) appointed him as Secretary of the Territory (second in command). This placed him in a difficult position (which he declined); however, Woodward became the emissary of the people. He mounted a relief group THE RISING POINT - WINTER 2010 9