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"Flattering as it may be to the human mind, and truly honorable as it is to receive from our fellow citizens testimonies of approbation for exertions to promote the public welfare, it is not less pleasing to know that the milder virtues of the heart are highly respected by a Society whose liberal principles must be founded in the immutable laws of truth and justice. To enlarge the sphere of social happiness is worthy of the benevolent design of a Masonic institution; and it is most fervently to be wished that the conduct of every member of the Fraternity, as well as those publications that discover the principles which actuate them, may tend to convince mankind that the great object of Masonry is to promote the happiness of the human race." 3
George Washington
[George Washington]
Etched by Stuart Edwards,
Gould’s History of Freemasonry Vol I. p. 104.
February 11 1732 O.S. - December 14, 1799
George Washington was Commanding General of the American Continental Army during their War of Independence (1776-1781). He was President of the Constitutional Convention in 1787 and from 1789 to 1796 was the first president of the USA.
Reputed to have received a masonic apron from Gilbert Lafayette, the only apron listed in Washington’s effects at his death was one made by nuns at Nantes and presented by the firm of Watson and Cassoul.1
Contrary to the discredited claims made by Governor Ritner (1780-1869)2 in 1837, Washington remained a freemason until his death, whereupon, at his widow’s request, he received a masonic funeral. While his continued membership and regard for Freemasonry is unquestionable, his personal papers suggest that he may not have been a frequent attendee at lodge.
Initiated: November 4, 1752.
Passed: March 3, 1753
Raised: August 4, 1753
Fredericksburg Lodge, Virginia,

Worshipful Master: May 29, 1788-1789 (elected but not installed)
Lodge No. 22 [39], Alexandria, Virginia,

Source: Denslow
1.Claude Harris, Esoteric Symbolism of the Watson-Cassoul Apron, Alexandria Lodge No. 39, 1998.
2.Vindication of General Washington from the stigma of adherence to secret societies, by Joseph Ritner (1780-1869) ... Communicated by request of the House of representatives, to that body, on the 8th of March, 1837, with the proceedings which took place on its reception. Harrisburg : Printed by T. Fenn, 1837. 26 p. 21 cm.
3.Correspondence from George Washington to Massachusetts Grand Lodge of Masons, December 27, 1792, reprinted in A Treasury of Masonic Thought, Carl Glick, ed. New York : Vail-Ballou Press, Inc., 1959. p. 204.


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