Wednesday, February 15, 2012


Perspectives on American Freemasonry
and Fraternalism Symposium

Scottish Rite Masonic Museum and Library

Lexington, Massachusetts

Saturday, April 28

From the organizers:

The symposium seeks to present the newest research on American fraternal groups from the past through the present day. By 1900, more than 250 American fraternal groups existed, numbering 6 million members. The study of their activities and influence in the United States, past and present, offers the potential for fresh interpretations of American society and culture.

Seven scholars from the United States, Britain, and Belgium will fill the day’s program.

Jeffrey Tyssens, Vrije Universiteit Brussel – The Goatee’s Revenge: A Founding Myth and a Founder’s Cult in American Fraternalism. (Nota Magpie: I don't know what "Goatee" is. This scholar has written previously about the goat in American fraternalism, so I'm not expecting a talk on facial hair.)

Yoni Appelbaum, Brandeis University – The Great Brotherhood of Toil: The Knights of Labor as a Fraternal Order.

Adam G. Kendall, Henry W. Coil Library and Museum – The Shadow of the Pope: Anti Catholicism, Freemasonry, and the Knights of Columbus in 1910s California.

Samuel Biagetti, Columbia University – A Prehistoric Lodge in Rhode Island? – Masonry and the Messianic Moment.

Alyce Graham, University of Delaware – Secrecy and Democracy: Masonic Aprons, 1750-1830.

Bradley Kime, Brigham Young University – Masonic Motifs in Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory.

Kristofer Allerfeldt, University of Exeter – The Significance of Fraternalism in Three Criminal Organizations of Late Nineteenth Century America: The Mollie Maguires, the Ku Klux Klan, and the Mafia.

All symposium attendees are invited to a public lecture by Michael Halleran, Independent Scholar, titled Gentlemen of the White Apron: Freemasonry in the American Civil War. 1 p.m. in the Maxwell Auditorium.

Registration costs $65 per person ($60 for museum members), and includes morning refreshments, lunch, and a closing reception. To register, click here and follow the instructions.

It will be great to be with Bro. Adam and Dr. Kristofer again. Both are veterans of the first symposium at Lexington two years ago, and they also lectured at ICHF last spring. I'm really looking forward to this day. I recommend it without any equivocation, mental reservation, etc.

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