The Masonic Society announces:
1. The Annual Conference of The Masonic Society, taking place this year October 7-9, at Morgan Hill Masonic Lodge, Morgan Hill, California (just twenty minutes from San Jose International Airport). The theme of the conference will be “Freemasonry on the Frontier,” the role of Masonry in the westward expansion of the US and Canada.
The conference will begin Friday evening with an informal dinner and end with lunch on Sunday. The event is being coordinated by TMS Director Gregg Hall.
2. The Masonic Society School, a program of noncredit online Masonic “courses,” study groups, and reading groups, as well as possible tours and other experiences, exclusively for TMS members. We expect to launch the first offerings at the October conference. The school is being coordinated by TMS Director Greg Knott.
3. The Masonic Society Scholar, an annual award to a Masonic researcher/educator. During the year of the award, the recipient will make himself available to speak at a number of lodges of research and other Masonic bodies throughout the world (with travel expenses paid by the local organization).
The first TMS Scholar will be announced at the Annual Conference this October. The program is being coordinated by the immediate past president of TMS, James Dillman.
(By sending email to these addresses, you are opting-in to receive occasional emails about the three programs.)
Last Updated on Wednesday, 09 March 2016 15:13
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The Masonic Society
2016 Annual Conference - "Freemasonry on the Frontier"
October 7 through 9, 2016
Morgan Hill Masonic Lodge, Morgan Hill, California
Via Eventbrite: 2016 Annual Conference of The Masonic Society: “Freemasonry on the Frontier”
NOTICE: PLEASE DO NOT SEND ANY REGISTRATION FORMS OR PAYMENTS TO MORGAN HILL LODGE. THE LODGE IS NOT HANDLING ANY REGISTRATION FOR THIS EVENT. ALL REGISTRATIONS AND PAYMENTS MUST BE MADE THROUGH THE EVENTBRITE LINK. THANK YOU FOR YOUR COOPERATION.
Morgan Hill Masonic Center
380 W Dunne Ave
Morgan Hill, CA 95037
All times are Central Daylight Time
|(Schedule is being developed. See below for current Featured Speakers.)|
The conference will begin Friday evening with an informal dinner and end with lunch on Sunday. A tour of the Winchester Mystery House—possibly haunted and with Masonic connections—will be offered Sunday at 2.
Watch this space for further information as it develops.
* All times are Pacific Daylight Time
Featured Speakers for The 2016 Annual Conference
(Other presenters to be announced*)
Samuel Langhorn Clemens: Brother Samuel Clemens was made a Mason in 1861, at Polar Star Lodge 79, St. Louis, MO. His many literary works (often published under the pen name Mark Twain) include “The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County” (set less than 135 miles from the site of this conference) and Roughing It, an account of Clemens’s life and travel on the Western frontier.
Clemens’s appearance is made possible by WB Jefferson H. Jordan, Jr., immediate past grand master of Masons in New Mexico and an authority on Clemens’s life and work.
A Vietnam veteran, Jordan attended Texas Western College in El Paso, TX, and is now the owner of Pioneer Equipment Sales. He is past master of Temple Lodge 6, Albuquerque, past district deputy grand lecturer for two years, and past district deputy grand master.
Worshipful Brother Mark Tabbert has served as curator of the Scottish Rite National Heritage Museum, and is currently director of collections at the George Washington Masonic National Memorial in Alexandria, VA. He is past master of Mystic Valley Lodge, Arlington, MA, and the Lodge of Nine Muses 1776, Washington DC. He is a full member of Quatour Coronati Lodge 2076, London, and a member of the Society of Blue Friars.
Tabbert is the author of American Freemasons: Three Centuries of Building Communities; Museum and Memorial: Ten Years of Masonic Writings; and,with William D. Moore, Secret Societies in America: Foundational Studies of Fraternalism. He is currently working on three books on George Washington and Freemasonry-related topics.
Worshipful Brother John Bizzack is a twenty-five-year veteran of the Lexington (KY) Police Department and, more recently, Commissioner of the Department of Criminal Justice Training for the Kentucky Justice Cabinet.
Bizzack is a member of Lexington Lodge 1, where he serves as the Education Committee chair and coordinator of the Masonic History and Study Group. He is author of several books and numerous papers on leadership, criminal investigation, and organizational management, as well as five books, along with dozens of publications, about Freemasonry. He speaks nationwide on the criminal justice system, critical thinking, and Freemasonry.
MWB John Cooper is a past grand secretary of the Grand Lodge of California, having served for almost eighteen years when he retired in 2008. In 2013-2014 he served as grand master of Masons in California. He holds a PhD in education from Claremont Graduate School, and before becoming grand secretary, he held various teaching and administrative posts in the public schools of California.
A Mason since 1964, Cooper served as master of James A. Foshay Lodge 641 in Los Angeles, and is both a thirty-third degree Mason in the Scottish Rite and a Knight of the York Grand Cross of Honor in the York Rite. His primary interest in Freemasonry has been the history and philosophy of the Craft, and he has published numerous papers on Freemasonry. He has served as master of both Northern and Southern California Research Lodges, and is currently president of the Philalethes Society.
Last Updated on Saturday, 14 May 2016 09:24
The Masonic Society and The Philalethes Society
September 13, 2014
Valley of Chicago Scottish Rite Cathedral
Via Eventbrite: The Masonic Society - Philalethes Society Symposium
BANQUET REGISTRATION HAS BEEN EXTENDED TO 10AM ON MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 8, 2014.
NOTICE: PLEASE DO NOT SEND ANY REGISTRATION FORMS OR PAYMENTS TO THE SCOTTISH RITE VALLEY OF CHICAGO. THE VALLEY IS NOT HANDLING ANY REGISTRATION FOR THIS EVENT. ALL REGISTRATIONS AND PAYMENTS MUST BE MADE THROUGH THE EVENTBRITE LINK. THANK YOU FOR YOUR COOPERATION.
|Fees:||Symposium (Includes Continental Breakfast)||$15.00|
|Banquet (Must reserve by 10AM EDT, September 8, 2014)||$35.00|
Valley of Chicago Scottish Rite Cathedral
383 E. Lake St.
Bloomingdale, IL 60108-1191
All times are Central Daylight Time
|9:00-10:00 A.M.||Registration and Continental Breakfast|
|10:00-11:00 A.M.||Presentation I - Steve Harrison|
|11:15-12:15 P.M.||Presentation II - Shawn Eyer|
|12:15- 2:00 P.M.||Lunch (on your own)**|
|2:00 - 3:00 P.M.||Presentation III - Mark Robbins|
|3:00 - 3:15 P.M.||Break|
|3:15 - 4:15 P.M.||Presentation IV - Alton Roundtree|
|4:15 P.M.||End of sessions - free time till dinner|
|5:00 - 6:00 P.M.||Social Hour (cash bar)|
|6:00 P.M.||Banquet and Keynote Speaker
Speaker: Andrew Hammer
Banquet Menu: Prime rib of beef, soup, tossed salad, dinner roll, baked potato, green beans, cheesecake, coffee.
Dress: Minimum business casual (Collared shirt, dress slacks, no jeans, teeshirts, or tennis shoes)
Parking: Ample free parking on site
Smoking: The Scottish Rite Cathedral is a non-smoking facility. Smoking is permitted on the patio or a minimum of twenty-five feet from the entrance.
Handicapped Facilities: Yes
Accommodations: Discounted rate of $95.00 per night available at the Hilton Garden Inn, 551 N. Swift Rd., Addison, IL 60101 Telephone: 630-691-0500 and mention The Masonic Society to get the discounted rate or reserve online at:
* All times are Central Daylight Time
** There are a variety of options with various price points within easy driving distance.
Speakers for TMS-PSoc Symposium
Alton G. Roundtree, 33°, is a Past Master of Redemption Lodge No. 24 of the Most Worshipful Prince Hall Grand Lodge of Washington, D.C. He is the Grand Editor-in-Chief of the Prince Hall Grand Lodge. Alton is also a member of the Jonathan Davis Consistory No. 1, Mecca Temple No. 10 (Shriners), Mt. Vernon Chapter No. 1 (Holy Royal Arch Masons), Henderson Commandery, and Redemption Chapter No. 14 of the Order of Eastern Star. Alton is a writer, publisher, researcher and editor of the Prince Hall Masonic Digest and The Phylaxis Magazine. He, along with Paul M. Bessel, is author of the bestseller and internationally acclaimed book, "Out of the Shadows: The Emergence of Prince Hall Freemasonry in America (Over 225 Years of Endurance)." He is also author of The National Grand Lodge and Prince Hall Freemasonry: The Untold Truth, and Conference of Grand Masters Prince Hall Masons, Conference History: 1887-2013. Alton, along with Tehuti Evans, is currently completing a history book on the Prince Hall Grand Lodge of the District of Columbia, History of the Prince Hall Grand Lodge: 1822-2013. He is also in the process of writing the updated history of the Prince Hall Shriners – 1993-2014. Alton is a member of two distinguished Masonic Groups, Society of Blue Friars (2011) and Masonic Brotherhood of the Blue Forget-Me-Not (2008). He is also a member of the Philalethes Society and a Fellow of The Masonic Society and The Phylaxis Society.
Presentation: Masonic Historical Research and Presentation: Intricate and Acceptance
The presenter will review the generally accepted steps and requirements necessary to ensure that Masonic historical research is done properly. Problems and approaches in Masonic historical research will be highlighted. Some of the problems and lessons learned in writing three Masonic history books will be reviewed. The requirements to make a successful presentation of historical research findings will be addressed. The presentation will also touch upon Masonic historical analysis and interpretation, significance and impact, in depth research, historical accuracy, historical context, and adherence to the theme.
Shawn Eyer is a Masonic scholar researching the history, ritual, iconography, symbolism and philosophy of Craft Freemasonry, and has lectured widely at both academic conferences and Masonic symposia. Bro. Eyer has authored dozens of articles on Masonry, and is the editor of Ahiman: A Review of Masonic Culture and Tradition, and of Philalethes. He is the Director of Communications of the George Washington Masonic National Memorial in Alexandria, Virginia.
Presentation: The Role of Music and Song in Traditional Freemasonry
In the eighteenth century, during the classical period of Freemasonry, singing was a normal part of the lodge experience. Nearly every published book of Constitutions and Masonic lectures included a significant number of Masonic songs. Often set to familiar melodies, the lyrics of these songs transmitted and illustrated Masonic tradition. More than just drinking songs, they reinforced the culture of Freemasonry, taught the Craft's special mythology, and underlined the ideal experience of the lodge as an analogue of the Temple of Solomon.
Steven L. Harrison, 33°, is Past Master of Liberty Lodge #31, Liberty, Missouri, and a dual member of Kearney Lodge #311. His Masonic affiliations include Liberty York Rite Bodies, Scottish Rite Valley of St. Joseph and Moila Shrine. A member of the DeMolay Legion of Honor, he is Past Dean of its St. Joseph Preceptory. Steve is the Master and a Fellow of the Missouri Lodge of Research. He is a regular contributor to several Masonic publications and editor of the Missouri Freemason magazine. His latest book is Freemasons: Tales From the Craft. With a Master's degree from Indiana University, he is retired from a career in information technology. Steve and his wife Carolyn reside in Kearney, Missouri.
Presentation: The Mystery of Oak Island: Masonic Connections to a Real National Treasure Site
For over two centuries a small patch of land on an obscure island has baffled treasure hunters and scientists alike. Tantalizing clues indicate it may be the site of the world's greatest treasure, or it might be history's most elaborate hoax. Speculation about who is responsible for its puzzling origin runs the gamut from pirates to space aliens; but when the facts are laid out the evidence on mysterious and enigmatic Oak Island points to one group... the Freemasons.
Mark Robbins is a Past Master of Mankato Lodge #12, AF&AM of Minnesota, currently serving as Lodge Education Officer. He became a 32° Scottish Rite Mason in 2007 in the Valley of Rochester in Minnesota, served as Venerable Master of the Lodge of Perfection 2011-2013, received the Knight Commander of the Court of Honour in 2011. A member of both The Masonic Society and the Philalethes Society, he was named an Esteemed Fellow of The Masonic Society in 2012. He was appointed Grand Lodge Education Officer of the AF&AM of Minnesota in 2014. Mark holds a Ph.D. from Northern Illinois University, and is currently on the faculty of the Department of Government at Minnesota State University, Mankato.
Presentation: Freemasonry and Law Enforcement: Compatible or Conflicting?
Law enforcement in a democratic society has always been a complicated issue. If you add to the discussion the issue of Freemasonry, a whole new set of concerns are raised. Do the moral lessons inculcated in Freemasonry, the ideals of tolerance and universal brotherhood, make for a better police officer (or judge,) or does the “secrecy” and obligations Masons have to support each other bring about corruption and favoritism? We will explore some examples of the affect Freemasonry has had on law enforcement in Great Britain and America and how Masonic concepts fit within the ethics of law enforcement.
Andrew Hammer is a Past Master of Alexandria-Washington Lodge No. 22 and holds a Gold Card in the Grand Lodge of Virginia, which certifies his proficiency in all aspects of Masonic ritual. He is a Royal Arch Mason, a Companion of the Allied Masonic Degrees and a 32nd degree Scottish Rite Mason. He is a member of the Quatuor Coronati Correspondence Circle, the Philalethes Society, the Masonic Society, and sits on the Executive Committee of the George Washington Masonic National Memorial Association. He resides in Alexandria Virginia. He is the author of Observing the Craft: The Pursuit of Excellence in Masonic Labour and Observance.
Last Updated on Friday, 05 September 2014 12:13
In commemoration of the fifth anniversary of the founding of The Masonic Society, we are proud to announce that we have commissioned a special medallion to be given to new members who join between May 1, 2013 and April 30, 2014. This beautiful medallion was designed and created by our good friend and brother John Bridegroom, and will be mailed to new members along with their patents, member pin, and member card.
Current members will be able to order this medallion, for a nominal cost (including domestic shipping and handling), from The Masonic Society store at http://www.themasonicsociety.com/cart/.
Thank you all for your continued support of The Masonic Society.
Sincerely and fraternally,
John "Bo" Cline
President, The Masonic Society
Last Updated on Monday, 05 August 2013 12:43
Many of you are aware that Chris Hodapp (founding Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of The Masonic Society) has been dealing with some rather significant health issues over the past few years. Despite this fact, he has endeavored to publish what many consider the best journal in Freemasonry today. Recently, Chris informed us that he is unable to continue as Editor-in-Chief, however he will remain involved with the Journal to the extent his health will allow.
Based on Chris’ revelation, we have secured the assistance of Michael Halleran who will assume the duties of Editor-in-Chief of the Journal. Michael is a freelance writer and a practicing attorney in the Flint Hills of East-Central Kansas. A lecturer at Emporia State University, he is also an active Freemason, and an officer in the Grand Lodge of Kansas A.F. & A.M. Michael is the author of the highly acclaimed book regarding Freemasonry during the American Civil War entitled The Better Angels of Our Nature and he previously was the editor of The Plumbline (quarterly newsletter of the Scottish Rite Research Society). In addition to Michael, Chris, and Jay Hochberg (Submissions Coordinator), I am pleased to announce that John Bridegroom will bring his extensive graphics design expertise to the editorial staff as Layout Editor.
May I also wish for you and your family a very joyful and safe holiday season and a prosperous new year.
Sincerely and Fraternally,
John R. “Bo” Cline, President
The Masonic Society
Last Updated on Thursday, 13 December 2012 17:24