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Lee and Masonry?

Discussion in 'Campfire Chat - General Discussions' started by Davidkmendel, Dec 9, 2011.

  1. Davidkmendel

    Davidkmendel Private

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    I was wondering if there was any direct evidence if Lee was involved in freemasonry. Im not trying to start conspiracy theory discussions I am just looking to see if this institution had much bearing on Lees decision making.
     

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  3. Dave Hull

    Dave Hull First Sergeant

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    I have never heard of any connections with Freemasonry for Lee.
     
  4. Robtweb1

    Robtweb1 2nd Lieutenant Retired Moderator Civil War Photo Contest
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    Neither have I, and I checked it out a couple of years ago. Many other Southern Generals were, however, as you know.
     
  5. Nathanb1

    Nathanb1 Brigadier General Moderator Forum Host

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    Sounds like being fatherless at a young age, being responsible for his mother, trying to get grades up to par and going to West Point and then being transferred so much may have prevented it. I've never read anything about his being a mason--which now that you mention it, is kind of unusual for that day and time. Even my great-granddad was one in the wilds of Texas :smile:
     
  6. donna

    donna Lt. Colonel Forum Host

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    I have also done some research on whether Robert E. Lee was a freemason. I can find no evidence. But did find an interesting fact on the Lee Lodge No. 209 A.F. & A.M. Waynesboro, Virginia. According to the Lodge's history, "Lee, the name chosen for the Waynesboro Lodge was one of great importance in that period. The Lodge requested and received permission from General Robert E. Lee to use his family name. It was the only time that general Lee gave permission for his name to be used for any such purpose". This can be found at http://www.grandlodgeofvirginia.org/lodges/209/history.asp

    Another interesting fact from this history states that "there is believed to be a direct connection between the current Lee Lodge No. 209, and the Lee Lodge No. 209 chartered as a traveling Confederate military Lodge in December of 1863 and issued to Wickham's Brigade, Virginia Cavalry". Do any of you know anything about this traveling Lodge? It is very interesting to me and wonder who all belonged to it.
     
  7. unicornforge

    unicornforge Sergeant

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    Freemasonry encourages loyalty to one's country, family, honesty, and free thinking.... all the good stuff. I suggest reading a book called, "The Builders: A Story and Study of Masonry" by Joseph Fort Newton. It is even available *FREE* as a Kindle Edition download from Amazon.com.

    Freemasonry is not a secret society and is easy to join. All a man has to do is look in the phone book or Google your local Masonic lodge and ask for an application from either the secretary of your local lodge or call the phone number for your state's Grand Lodge. The only requirements are that you are a good man, and believe in some sort of God of your choice. Freemasonry is simply an adult fraternity. If you were ever a member of a college fraternity then the concept is an easy one. There are no secrets, just about everything that used to be kept private is available on the Internet. There are no special advantages that I know of, being a member (in my experience) will not even help you get a job (heaven knows I could use a full time job).

    People interested in history often become interested in Freemasonry. For several years now there has been a yearly Masonic meeting held outside in a field during the big Gettysburg reenactment. The participants attend in period clothing, and the meeting is held by the Gettysburg Lodge with permission of the Pennsylvania Grand Lodge. Freemasons from anywhere in the world, are invited to attend. If you really want to experience history, an American Civil War field lodge, and feel thrown back in time, then that is an event to experience. And again, the first step in experiencing it is to ask for an application.

    If I may be of any further assistance, feel free to PM me.

    Best wishes as always,
    Dave
     
  8. Nathanb1

    Nathanb1 Brigadier General Moderator Forum Host

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    Dadgum. You obviously are a genius. How do you think of such great questions? You are going to pursue this, aren't you? Too good!!!!!!!
     
  9. unicornforge

    unicornforge Sergeant

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    Interesting point, their web site also states, "Very little is known of the early history of the Lodge because of a fire which destroyed all the records."

    Lodges keep detailed records, so if there was any information about that traveling lodge, then unfortunately that information about its members and meetings prior to the fire of At 2 o’clock A.M. on February 23, 1898, was extremely likely to have been lost in that fire. My humble understanding is that a bunch of Freemasons who were part of a military group of that time could, and sometimes did, petition a state's Grand Lodge for permission to form a military lodge for their group. With that permission, they would hold meetings wherever they were. Since the Army of Northern Virginia was based in Virginia, then following logic, they likely petitioned the Grand Lodge of Virginia for that permission. Who attended depended upon who was in the neighborhood at the time of the meeting. The yearly event in Gettysburg reenacts a military traveling lodge, and each reenactment is attended by Masons wearing both blue and grey, as well as townspeople, other living historians, and includes Masons from all over the Country, as well as any Freemasons potentially visiting from Europe.

    PS: Grand Lodges, to my knowledge, do not create lodges in a single state, this case Virginia, with the same name and number, so the likelihood of one proceeding the other and potentially evolving into the later is high. If so, then all the records of the earlier lodge being incorporated into the later lodge would have likely burned.

    PPS: If Robert E. Lee had been a Freemason, that would likely have become as common knowledge and as well talked about as the famous Freemason, George Washington.
     

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