Freemasons: A History and Exploration of the World's Oldest Secret Society

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Citadel Press, 2005 - History - 237 pages
5 Reviews
In Freemasons, H. Paul Jeffers delves into Masonic history to reveal the surprising and controversial truths behind this ancient and secretive order, from its mystery-shrouded origins in medieval Europe through its rise in America, where Benjamin Franklin founded the first lodge. Today, some four to five million Freemasons worldwide pledge to live their lives in accordance with principles of morality, charity and loyalty--both to fellow Masons and to the order itself. But what exactly does Freemasonry entail, and what happens behind the lodges' closed doors? Discover the truth about:
- Masonic Symbols--architectural symbolism, rings, pins and other subtle indicators of membership
- Rites and rituals--"rite of Investiture" initiation ceremonies, the Apron Lecture, the rite of Destitution and others
- Hierarchy and organizational structure--including rules for advancement
- Freemasonry's ancient and ongoing conflict with major religious institutions worldwide
- Women and Freemasonry--including such groups as Eastern Star, Job's Daughters, and Amaranth
- "Anti-Masons"--opposition groups, from the Catholic Church to conspiracy theorists
- African-American Masonry--the "Prince Hall" Masonry alumni, which include Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall, author Alex Haley, and musician Nat "King" Cole
- Myths and Conspiracies--why is a Masonic symbol on American currency? Do Masons really control the world?
Now, in this fascinating guide that explores the myths and reality of Freemasonry, the veil of secrecy is finally lifted.
 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - snash - LibraryThing

Curious about the Masons after touring their temple, this book answered enough of my questions to satisfy my curiosity. But it was a very painful disjointed presentation that made the search very unpleasant. Worthy of a scan, no more. Read full review

User Review - Flag as inappropriate

Just was looking up some facts and "stumbled" across this. No, I don't think Major John Andre was a Freemason. No, I don't think Andre was a suitor before Peggy married Benedict Arnold. So I would think you as a reader and researcher should be careful on what makes a good story versus what with some made up facts makes a great and, in this case, a secret story.
Look up on the internet and find out ALL of the secrets of Freemasonry. You can go to a bookstore and find the manuals. Or you could even ask a Mason how to become one. My personal and real favorite story was when the Grand Master of New York State visiting the Knight Templars and began his remarks with, "Okay, I am the Grand Master. Where is the treasure." Much applause.
 

Contents

Cornerstones i
1
With Stone So Strong
8
Freemasonry and the Knights Templar
12
Freemasonry and the Protestant Reformation
18
Dr James Andersons Constitutions
25
Freemasonry Takes Root in America
35
Brothers Divided
51
The French the Pope and Prince Hall
63
Entering the Brotherhood
126
Fellowcraft
131
Master Mason
137
Scottish and York Rites
145
The Men Who Rule the World
158
The Future of Freemasonry
177
Masonic Songs
183
Table Lodges
190

The Mystery of The Magic Flute
70
Whatever Happened to William Morgan?
82
From Log Cabin to Temple
92
Battlefield Brothers
98
Was Jack the Ripper a Mason?
112
The Lodge
119
Rudyard Kipling Poet of Freemasonry
192
The Anderson Constitutions
200
Masonic Chronology
207
Further Reading
222
About the Author
237
Copyright

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About the author (2005)

H. Paul Jeffers (1934-2009) was an established military historian and author of seventy books. He worked as an editor and producer at ABC, CBS and NBC, and is the only person to have been news director of both of New York City's all-news radio stations. He taught journalism at New York University, Syracuse University, and Boston University. His books include the novels A Grand Night for Murder and What Mommy Said, and the nonfiction Marshall: Lessons in Leadership with Alan Axelrod. He lived in New York, NY.

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