The Rowlands Family: Freemasonry as a Tradition
Revere Charter from St. Paul Lodge on Extended Loan

Back to Our Roots: The Scottish Rite Masonic Museum and Library, Inc.

In honor of the nation's bicentennial, the Supreme Council, Scottish Rite, Northern Masonic Jurisdiction dedicated the museum and library in April of 1975. Just a few years before, Sovereign Grand Commander George A. Newbury (1895-1984), the motivating force behind the museum and library, conceived the institution “… to tell a thrilling story--the story of America.” Since then, the museum has collected objects, documents and books related to American and Masonic history and presented exhibitions and programs exploring the same subjects.  2010_42_61

On official documents founders called the museum the “Scottish Rite Masonic Museum & Library, Inc.” but did business and promoted the organization as the Museum of Our National Heritage or as the Scottish Rite Masonic Museum of Our National Heritage. In 2001, the public name of the museum was shortened to National Heritage Museum, but our legal name remained Scottish Rite Masonic Museum & Library, Inc.  Over the last few years, we have been getting back to our roots and using our legal name accompanied by the symbol of the Supreme Council, Scottish Rite, Northern Masonic Jurisdiction—a crowned double-headed eagle with the motto Deus Meumque Jus (God and My Right) to acknowledge our founding, special connection to and continuing support by the Freemasons of the Northern Masonic Jurisdiction.  You may have seen the name and logo changes in our publications, promotional material, on our building signage and now we feature the change here, on our blog.

AChatelain 001 1975 1719s it has for the past four years, our blog will continue to explore intriguing aspects of our object, archives and library collections.  We will also keep readers abreast of exhibitions, programs and other special events.  Right now we are preparing for an exhibition of selections from our rich map collection—in its first year alone, the museum purchased over 30 historic maps for its holdings.  This image shows a detail of one of the maps that will be featured in the upcoming exhibition, "Journeys and Discoveries:  The Stories Maps Tell."  Most importantly, our blog is a place where we can hear from you.  If you have a question or comment, please get in touch!

Photo credit: 

Detail from Carte tres curieuse de la Mer du Sud…, 1719.  Chatelain family, Zacharie Chatelain (d. 1723) and Henri Abraham Chatelain (1684-1743).  Amsterdam, Holland.  Van Gorden-Williams Library, 001-1975 1719.  Photograph by David Bohl.

Scottish Rite Double-Headed Eagle Pendant, ca. 1912.  Gift of the Supreme Council, 33º, Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite, Northern Masonic Jurisdiction, USA, 2010.042.61a-b.  Photograph by David Bohl.




Brad Hoss

I'm pretty sure my family did a lot of masonry in the past. I wonder if any of their stuff was published in this library. I should probably fly over from Toronto for vacation one day and check it out. Thanks for reminding me about this. Ancestral history can be really interesting sometimes.

Hilary Anderson Stelling

Dear Dr. Corson—

We appreciate your comment on our recent blog post.

As you can see from our website (a click on the link in the upper right hand corner of this page, near the photo of the museum, will take you right to it), we have a variety of exhibitions featuring our Masonic collections on display. “Threads of Brotherhood: Masonic Quilts and Textiles,” will be on view through March 23, 2013. We also feature Masonic material in our recent acquisitions exhibition and our lobby display areas. If you are interested in arranging a visit to the museum for your lodge or valley, please feel free to call me at 781 457 4121.

With best wishes and thanks for being a blog reader!

Hilary Anderson Stelling
Director of Exhibitions and Audience Development

Dr Warren Corson III

It's great to see the new (renewed) emphasis on our heritage and roots to the SR.I hope this will translate into more Masonic items on display at the museum. I would love to get brothers from lodges that I belong to, to organize a trip to the museum again to see a newly expanded Masonic collection.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been saved. Comments are moderated and will not appear until approved by the author. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until the author has approved them.

Your Information

(Name and email address are required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)