Freemasons

In a matter of three decades, the Masonic fraternity had multiplied all over the Old World and the New World colonies. Freemasonry particularly became popular in the colonies of America. Great men in American history, such as George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, Paul Revere and Joseph Warren, became members of the fraternity. Other illustrious Masonic members who participated in the founding of America were John Paul Jones, Lafayette, Nathanael Greene and John Hancock. Chief Justice John Marshall, who was also a Mason, formed the Supreme Court into its modern structure (York 1993).

Majority of the Masonic historians and scholars agree that Freemasonry, in its present structure, perhaps developed as an accessory from stonemasons from the Middle Ages through the period until the formation of the Operative Stone Masons Guilds. However, it is still uncertain how or when the conversion occurred from Operative Guild Free-Stone Masonry to scholarly Speculative Freemasonry or those making use of tools of stonemasons, garments and practices as symbolic supports to teach their principles, even though Scottish Lodge Kilwinnings documentations confirming admitted non Operatives by just about 1672 and several Lodges in England were completely non Operative at least by 1646, the time of Elias Ashmole (Jacob 1991).

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Stonemasons are remarkable. They acquired extraordinary skills to construct the cathedrals, castles and the essential sculpted forms and adornments ordered of their masters. This kind of skill must have looked like almost supernatural to the huge uneducated masses. They were evidently the cream of the crop of the labor force, possessed secret practices and symbols and would have fascinated and attracted several of the most skilled non-educated enlistments (Doan 1993). 

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