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Papers
Contains research papers delivered at Virginia Research Lodge or elsewhere.

  
  
  
  
collapse Year : 2004 ‎(2)
Preface to Volume IVRt. Wor. Richard K. Thompson9/6/2004-1
Note from the Editor Volume IVWor. G. William Miller9/2/2004-1
collapse Year : 2003 ‎(2)
Preface to Volume IIIWor. Kwame Acquaah12/20/2003-1
Note from the Editor Volume IIIWor. G. William Miller12/20/2003-1
collapse Year : 2001 ‎(5)
Masonry in the Federal DistrictMt. Wor. Stewart Wilson Miner9/29/2001
In this paper, the author provides an overview of the formation of the Grand Lodge of the District of Columbia. He then explores the growth of several lodges in the DC area, particularly those within the area of Northern Virginia that was originally ceded to form the city of Washington, and later returned to Virginia. The formation of Lodges during this period and later during the Civil War had some interesting consequences.
Using the World Wide Web for Conducting Masonic ResearchWor. Paul S. Newhall6/30/2001
The author describes his early experience using the Internet and provides helpful tips on searching the web. Although many of the links are now outdated, this paper is a useful instruction for someone who is not familiar with the Internet and wants to search for information online.
Religious Freedom In Early VirginiaWor. John Shroeder3/31/2001140
This paper delves into the history of religion in Virginia shortly before and after the Revolutionary War. The Church of England was the most prominent denomination, and Protestants who belonged to other denominations, although still Christians, were mistreated and fined for practicing their faith. The paper does not relate to Masonry per se, but provides a backdrop of our Virginia history to consider when researching Masonry at our Grand Lodge's founding.
The Times They Are A ChanginWor. John Shroeder3/31/2001141
The author addresses an issue that is often discussed in Masonic circles: The decline in membership. The reason most assume is due to death by WWII era Masons, but the reality is most Masons quit within four years, or are suspended NPD, because they are not satisfied with their Masonic experience. He recommends ways to counter this trend by ensuring new Masons find what they want within Masonry and remain active among us.
Fingerprint Based Background Checks to Protect Vulnerable PersonsWor. James Loudermilk3/31/2001
This presentation is different from any other we have previously published in our Transactions. It was originally prepared as a PowerPoint slide show. The author narrated the presentation when it was originally done in the Lodge, but the author did not submit either the narrative or any slide notes to accompany the presentation. Unfortunately, no one in the lodge took any notes either during the presentation. However, it was a very interesting presentation (although there does not appear to be any direct connection to Masonry) and the slides are presented for your review.
collapse Year : 2000 ‎(8)
What Does Free MeanWor. John Shroeder12/16/2000138
There is no clear explanation as to why we use the terms "Freemasonry" and "Masonry" interchangeably. The author provides a brief exploration of the uses of the term "Free" throughout history, and provides several possible reasons why it became attached to Masonry.
The Importance of Research LodgesMt. Wor. Richard E. Fletcher12/16/2000139
In this paper, the author reflect on a topic many Masons have lamented about: The decline in membership since World War II. He then addresses the overall lack of Masonic Education within our Lodges, and the importance of ensuring that every Mason, not just new members, be more informed about Masonry. Finally, he addresses the vital importance of Research Lodges in filling this void of Masonic Education and makes several recommendations for Research Lodges to adopt.
Seven Habits of Highly Effective People - A ReviewWor. John Shroeder9/30/2000136
This is a book review of "Seven Habits Of Highly Effective People"
by Dr. Stephen Covey. The reviewer takes these seven points and frames them in a way they can be applied to Masonry, and thus become Highly Effective Masons.
The Challenges of Past MastersMt. Wor. Donald M. Robey, MPS9/30/2000137
In this brief presentation, the author addresses the issue of what a Worshipful Master can and should do with himself when he leaves the East. He also mentions the Past Masters Association of the District of Columbia as a good example of how to keep Past Masters plugged in and supporting their Lodges.
The Murdered Magicians - A ReviewWor. John Shroeder5/29/2000135
This is a book review of "The Murdered Magicians, The Templars And Their Myths" By Dr. Peter Partner. The Magicians in question refer to the Knights Templar, who were accused of black magic and witchcraft by the Inquisition. The review explores the reason for these charges and examines the infighting between King Phillip the Fair and several popes leading up to the execution of Jacques DeMolay. The book puts a bit of a different spin on a story that many Masons and DeMolays are quite familiar with.
The Seventh SignBro. Sean O’Neill4/29/2000133
In this paper, the author presents several classic myths from various cultures and compares and contrasts them to the Hiramic legend as presented in Freemasonry.
The Royal Arch of Zerubbabel and the Royal Arch of SolomonWor. John Shroeder1/29/2000132
The author examines the origins and similarities between the The Royal Arch Of Solomon, the 13th Degree as conferred in the Scottish Rite, and the The Royal Arch Of Zerubbabel, or just the Royal Arch Degree, as conferred as the final degree of the Royal Arch Chapter in the York Rite.
Suggestions About How To Do Interesting and Informative Masonic ResearchRt. Wor. Paul M. Bessel1/29/2000133
The author lists ten points that will improve your ability to research and write an effective paper about any Masonic subject. This paper is a "how-to" on gathering information and organizing it. It should be read by everyone who wants to start writing a research paper.

Another paper, Research Lodges by Wor. John Shroeder, was delivered in June of 2000 based on this paper.
collapse Year : 1999 ‎(4)
Masonic Symbols and EmblemsMt. Ex. William A. Brown10/30/1999131
The author examines the origins of the square and compasses, how they have appeared numerous times in history before the first Lodges were even formed, how few Masons understand their true meaning, and how we should use them today.
The Forgotten Mother of Our CountryMt. Ex. William A. Brown5/29/1999129
This paper provides more light on the history of Mary Ball Washington, the mother of George Washington. The author makes the claim that Mary deserves credit for saving George Washington and in effect, saving our country.
The Underground RailroadProf. Edward Smith5/29/1999130
The author speaks about the Underground Railroad and intends to draw connections to Masonry, but in the end he simply says, "Of course Masons would have been involved", without providing any evidence. He also speaks about how the Cotton Gin affected the treatment of slaves and postulates how slavery might well have ended on it's own without the Civil War.
Neo-Platonism and the Royal Arch Triple TauWor. W. Kirk MacNulty1/30/1999128
In this paper, the author introduces the Greek philosopher Plotinus and his thinking on whether God has limitations. He then expands on neo-Platonism, and puts forth an argument that this philosophy is expressed mathematically in the English Royal Arch Degree, especially with regard to the Triple Tau and the five Platonic Bodies.
collapse Year : 1998 ‎(4)
Preserving the Heritage, Building the Future - A Call To ActionMt. Wor. Edmund M. Cohen12/19/1998127
The author begins by noting that Freemasonry faces several challenges and has very vocal critics. He then identifies those critics, and the very reason why they are so set against us. Finally, he lays out a plan of action that tackles this difficult problem, while holding onto the ideals without which, we would ceased to be Freemasonry and become something else altogether.
Masonic Symbols, Physical And ConceptualMt. Wor. Edmund M. Cohen10/31/1998126
The author provides an explanation of why symbolism is used to hide a deeper meaning and provides several examples outside of Masonry. He then delves into some of our better known symbols and shares some of those deeper meanings. Far from being hidden truths, most of what he presents is openly explained in our public and private ceremonies.
Color SymbolismWor. John Shroeder8/29/1998125
This paper explores the various colors used in Blue Lodges and in our appendant bodies, and the symbolic meanings. It also delves into Jung's theory that man has developed an intellectual conscious mind that hides our primitive, emotional unconscious mind. By joining the two together, we reach a higher state of being.
Masonic Titles Their Use And MisuseRt. Wor. Chris Dains5/30/1998124
This short paper contains commentary on the namesake of the Lodge of Research (NOT a Research Lodge), the process of writing a research paper, how the Shrine is not a Masonic Order but an organization of Masons, whether a Master may make innovations in Masonry, and finally about the misuse of "Worshipful Master" as opposed to simply "Master of the Lodge" or "Master in 1996".
collapse Year : 1997 ‎(2)
Grand Lodge RecognitionsMt. Wor. Donald M. Robey, MPS12/13/1997122
This short presentation by Mt. Wor Robey describes the efforts he made to obtain a up-to-date chart of all Grand Lodges in the world and which Grand Lodges they recognized.
Regular LodgesMt. Wor. Donald M. Robey, MPS12/13/1997123
This short presentation by Mt. Wor Robey was the second one that evening, where he continues his topic of recognition and explores what defines a Regular Lodge and a Regular Grand Lodge and the process by which Grand Lodges recognize each other. He also gives a brief history of where recognition of Grand Lodges became complicated, such as after World War II when Freemasonry emerged after being banned by Axis powers.
collapse Year : 1996 ‎(2)
Regularity, Recognition, and Fraternal RelationsRt. Wor. Mickey Ander12/7/1996121
This short paper covers a blend of items recently discussed during refreshment, after a meeting of the A.D. Smith, Jr., Lodge of Research, on the general topic of "Recognition". We thought that you too might be interested in the subject. So, we developed a list of definitions, compiled our views, and packaged them together with an index of authoritative sources for further inquiry, research, and profitable discussion.
Masonic Tracing BoardsWor. W. Kirk MacNulty4/30/1996120
This paper examines three popular tracing boards from the 19th century that were used in Masonic Lodges as part of the degrees. The author explains the symbolism and metaphysical significance of the images used in these tracing boards.
collapse Year : 1995 ‎(3)
Scripted Debate on Classes, Voting, and CatechismBro. Glenn Cross9/30/1995119
This presentation is a well-planned discussion of three potentially controversial issues, where the "pro" and "con" for each issue is presented. It would be a good program for a Lodge that would allow any number of members to read a part and participate.
Abraham Lincoln and FreemasonryRt. Wor. Paul M. Bessel7/29/1995118
This well-researched paper presents evidence that Abraham Lincoln was well aware of Masonry and was approached on numerous occasions about becoming a Mason. It also notes the various Masons in Lincoln's circle, and that every candidate for President in 1860 was a Mason save Lincoln. It also gives several reasons why he declined to petition, but it is likely he would have after completing his time as President, had he not been assassinated.
It Came to PassMt. Ex. William A. Brown4/29/1995117
This is a a two-act play with narrations on the formation of the Grand Lodge of Virginia. It is meant to be performed before a Lodge, preferably in costume, with sections that may be narrated to the Lodge.
collapse Year : 1994 ‎(3)
History of Freemasonry and the Development of the 15 Original English Masonic LecturesMt. Ex. William A. Brown10/29/1994116
The author presents 15 Masonic Lectures transcribed by Dr. Desagulier in 1719, used by the Grand Lodge of England. The author speculates that these lectures were the source of the lectures given at the end of the three degrees in the Blue Lodge.
Reflections On A SpotlightWor. John Shroeder4/30/1994115
The author refutes the charges made against Freemasonry on the Southern Maryland Christian Information System (SMCIS) electronic bulletin board in 1994. These allegations rely on taking numerous passages by Albert Pike and other Masonic authors out of context to make their argument, that Masonry is secretly a Satanic cult and incompatible with being a Christian.
Examination of VisitorsWor. Michael Pobat1/29/1994114
A presentation (requires several actors) to be given in a Lodge explaining how to receive a visitor to your Lodge. This would be a fun and educational program for a Lodge to present.
collapse Year : 1993 ‎(5)
Research Into The True Name Of The Grand Lodge Of VirginiaMt. Wor. Donald M. Robey, MPS12/18/1993113
This paper details the findings of two select committees, of the Grand Lodge of Virginia, and of Virginia Research Lodge No. 1777, who were tasked to determine the true name of our Grand Lodge. It also explores the validity of the term "Ancient Free and Accepted Masons" when our Lodges have no claim to that term.
Washington Memorial ExercisesMt. Wor. Norman L. Hoff, Sr.10/30/1993112
This paper detailed the incredible efforts by the Grand Lodge of Colorado, specifically Past Grand Master Roger Williams Woodbury, to plan and execute the Centennial Memorial observation for Brother and President George Washington in 1899. This memorial was coordinated among all the U.S. Grand Lodges.
Preface to Volume IIWor. Edwin R. Carpenter Jr.7/15/1993-1
Origin of the Regius PoemMt. Wor. Floren Quick5/29/1993102
This paper provides a detailed history of the Regius Poem, also known as the Hollowell Manuscript, the earliest document confirmed to have been written about the formation of Masonic Lodges. The author prefaces the history with his own speculation about how this document originated, as the true origin of this famous document is still unclear.
The Letter GWor. S. Brent Morris1/30/1993101
The author tackles the common misconception by anti-Masonic writers that our craft is devoted to Paganism by twisting the words of Mackey and Pike. He explains the similarities and offers a more reasonable conclusion.
collapse Year : 1992 ‎(2)
Saint John The BaptistWor. Roger W. Peak10/31/1992100
This paper is a biography of the life of John the Baptist, drawing on both biblical and historical sources. It attempts to justify why John the Baptist is one of our patron saints, and how his life reflects Masonic principles.
The Cradle Of The American RevolutionAlexandria Scottish Rite8/29/199299
A play presented by the Alexandria Scottish Rite that explores the popular theory of how Masons had taken an active role in the Boston Tea Party in 1773, even to go so far as to planning the execution of the raid within a Masonic Lodge.
collapse Year : 1991 ‎(1)
Mozarts Other Masonic OperaDr. Roger M. Firestone3/30/199193
A literary review of two of Mozart's operas that have Masonic references. The first, "The Magic Flute", is much better known as having Masonic symbolism, while the other is "The Abduction From the Seraglio". An interesting exploration of how Mozart wove not only Masonic initiation ceremonies, but how a Mason should act in his daily life, into his work.
collapse Year : 1990 ‎(3)
The BibleMt. Ex. William A. Brown9/15/199088
This paper explores the origins of the Holy Bible, one of the Three Great Lights in Masonry. The author explains how Masons had a role to play in the creation of the King James version of the Bible.
Charles A. Lindbergh - Man, Mason, AmericanDr. Roger M. Firestone6/30/199087
A detailed biography of Charles Lindbergh, the first pilot to fly a solo flight across the Atlantic. Details his upbringing, his famous flight, his time as an engineer, the kidnapping of his son, and his unfortunate endorsement of Nazi Germany which tarnished his public reputation. Little is said of his Masonic life other than joining a lodge at 24 years old.
Freemasonry And JudaismRt. Wor. Paul M. Bessel3/31/199086
This paper explores the history of Jews entering Freemasonry and the resistance they encountered in being accepted into the Fraternity. It also describes the similarities between us and the persecution that Masonry and Jews experienced together, back in history and also in modern times.
collapse Year : 1989 ‎(2)
Alpha Lodge No 116Bro. J. Hampton Harley, MPS8/16/198979
In the late 1800s, a movement was afoot to bring black men into our Grand Lodges, which met with a good deal of resistance. This paper reveals the history of Alpha Lodge in New Jersey and an early attempt to integrate American Masonry.
The Office Of District Deputy Grand MasterMt. Wor. Lloyd Ulrich Jefferson4/29/198978
This Position Paper recalls the origins of the role of District Deputy Grand Master within the Grand Lodge of Virginia. It discusses whether the true purpose of the DDGM is no longer followed, and if the role is just an empty title. It also proposes a way to correct this problem and restore the role to it's rightful place within the Grand Lodge.
collapse Year : 1988 ‎(5)
The Legend Of Hiram AbiffBro. Jerry Marsengill10/29/1988-1
This paper explores the real or imagined historical origins of the Hiramic legend from the Master Mason Degree. It delves into the purpose of the legend and what it tries to teach us.
ChangeMt. Wor. Cabell F. Cobbs7/30/198877
This paper delves into the idea of change in Masonry, and how resistant Masons are to the very notion of change, even to save our organization.
Preface to Volume IMt. Ex. Richard B. Baldwin6/14/1988-1
A preface to the first Volume of Transactions for A. Douglas Smith Lodge of Research No. 1949. This is the first of many documents provided by that Lodge for our archives.
A Concise Study Of Freemasonry In FranceDr. Claude Harrison Harris4/30/198876
This paper is an overview of the history of Masonry within the country of France. It lists the major grand bodies that govern French Masons.
Applied Masonic ResearchRt. Wor. John P. McIntyre1/30/198868
A presentation including George Washington and Benjamin Franklin about the events of the writing of the Constitution in 1787. This presentation was originally presented at Elmer Timberman Lodge #54.
collapse Year : 1987 ‎(2)
The Masonic Witch Hunt of the 1980sMt. Ex. Thomas E. Weir10/31/198760
A critical review of the THE BROTHERHOOD by Stephen Knight. The author (of the book) is quite critical of Freemasonry and indulges several conspiracy theories not based on fact. The author of the paper addresses these ideas and explains once again how Masonry is NOT a religion.
Masonry and the ConstitutionMt. Wor. Stewart Wilson Miner8/29/198758
An analysis of the several Masons who participated in drafting the U.S. Constitution. Examines the political and philosophical influence of the newly formed Grand Lodge of England, and how these Masons did and did not use their Masonic experience in writing this first of it's kind document for the government of a new nation.
collapse Year : 1986 ‎(3)
Methods Of Historical ResearchJoseph S. Gordon, Ph.D.11/29/198657
A useful guide for a Mason interested in beginning to write research papers. Explains the fame of mind necessary, and details the various steps of gathering information, creating a bibliography, and developing a writing style for articles.
General And Brother Joshua L ChamberlainBro. Charles W. Plummer5/30/198656
A history of Chamberlain’s life as a school teacher, a Mason, a highly decorated Civil War General, and four-time Governor of the state of Maine.
Resolution of Memoriam Alfred Douglas Smith JrMt. Wor. Lloyd Ulrich Jefferson3/29/1986-1
A memoriam in honor of A. Douglas Smith Jr.
collapse Year : 1985 ‎(3)
A Declaration For Masonic ActionBro. Kenneth H. Hooley11/30/198555
In light of the dramatic loss of membership in Grand Lodges nationwide, a very aggressive proposal of how to take action to correct this loss and return Masonry to its previous prominence in society.
The Masonic Rods and StaffsWor. C. Richard Walk6/29/198554
An analysis of rods and staffs in biblical and human history, and a brief program that illustrates how the movement of the Stewards and Deacons form our Masonic symbols.
Masonic Ritual In VirginiaRt. Wor. Samuel T. Atkinson3/30/198553
A thorough study of the origins of Virginia Ritual, from our Mother Grand Lodges through the forming of the Grand Lodge of Virginia to the establishment of the Committee on Work and Grand Lecturers.
collapse Year : 1984 ‎(3)
The Twofold Nature Of FreemasonryBro. Kenneth H. Hooley12/15/198452
The author discusses the exoteric/external, the structure and ritual of our craft; and the esoteric/internal, the hidden meaning behind the ritual and symbolism. He discusses the origins of Freemasonry and our ties to the Rosicrucians.
Freemasonry And The Leaders Of Victorian EnglandMt. Ex. George B. Yeates9/29/198451
An explanation of how speculative Masons began to join operative Lodges, and brief biographies of prominent Masons in the English nobility.
The First Tool EngineerRt. Wor. George L. Miller6/30/198450
A brief story of the first Tool Engineer and the first Tool Engineering Educator, Tubal Cain.
collapse Year : 1983 ‎(2)
Ho, Companions!Mt. Wor. Stewart Wilson Miner7/30/198345
The author examines the problems of Centralization, Legalization, Idolization and Depersonalization that threaten Freemasonry. He suggests the antidote is Fraternalization, if we are strong enough to take it.
Alfred Douglas SmithRt. Wor. Allen E. Roberts1/29/198344
The first paper presented in A. Douglas Smith Jr. Lodge of Research No. 1949, in honor of the Mason it was named for.