Rare book of historic Masonic proceedings donated to N.C. State Archieves

1846 Grand Lodge Proceedings York Masons
1846 Grand Lodge Proceedings York Masons

A rare masonic book containing meeting minutes from an 1846 gathering of all lodges in N.C. was donated by Triangle Arts and Entertainment to the N.C. State Archives in October.

“The State Archives is very interested in the proceedings of the Grand Lodge Ancient York Masons of North Carolina in December 1846 and is honored to receive this historical publication,” said Jesse Lankford, State Archives and Records administrator within the Division of Historical Resources.

Sample of members
Sample of members

Triangle Arts and Entertainment proprietor Bob Morrow purchased the book at Barn Swallow Antiques in Asheville, N.C. to look for family names, and because the minutes “in their own words” seemed significant.

“I was aware of the North Carolina Museum of History’s restoration a masonic apron and contacted its Chief Curator Joe Porter who quickly put us in touch Mr. Lankford,” said Morrow.

The Grand Lodge of Ancient York Masons of North Carolina met in Raleigh for a week from December 7-14, 1846. The proceedings within the book reveal a great deal about the robust workings of the Masons at the time, including frequent references to the business of Grand Lodges (the Annual Meetings) of other states as well as nations.

Discussion of Jewish Freemasons
Discussion of Jewish Freemasons

One excerpt includes a lively discussion of the”Prussian” policy against the admittance of Jewish members:

“It is well  known that the Grand Lodge of Prussia refuses admittance to Jewish Freemasons, and that in consequence great excitement has been caused in the Masonic world; and also that the Grand Lodge of England has, for the same reason, formally withdrawn all fellowship from their Prussian brethren…the obnoxious action of the Prussian Grand Lodge was dictated alone by what was conceived to be an imperative obligation to respect the laws of the land…prohibiting to the Jews certain privileges, among which was that of membership in the Masonic Society.”

About the Book:

Title: Proceedings of the Grand Lodge of Ancient York Masons,  First Edition

Author/Illustrator: P.W. Fanning, William T. Bain

Publisher/Date: Thomas J. Lemay, Printer, Raleigh, NC, 1846

Size: 8vo, 5.5 x 8.75 inches, 20 pages

About Triangle Arts and Entertainment:

Triangle Arts and Entertainment e-magazine is devoted to bringing news and information about the visual and performing arts to visitors and residents of the Triangle. The publication seeks to promote education and support of the cultural arts as well as recreational opportunities in the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill area. Triangle Arts and Entertainment is a highly respected source for in-depth reviews, previews and articles about the arts, festivals, concerts, theater, exhibitions, restaurants and attractions in and around the Triangle.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.