Digital Collections Highlight: 1760 Masonic Lodge Summons
July 11, 2017
The Van Gorden-Williams Library & Archives Digital Collections website contains a rich collection of digitized documents from the Scottish Rite Masonic Museum & Library. Among these items is an engraved lodge summons (pictured at left), printed in 1760. Henry Dawkins (c. 1735-c.1790) engraved this summons, which was sent to members of Philadelphia's Lodge No. 2, Ancient York Masons. This summons, or invitation, was circulated on May 13, 1760, to inform members of the lodge that a meeting was to take place at the house of Brother James Bell. Richard McNeall, who had been appointed Secretary of the lodge at its March 11, 1760 meeting, signed the summons in the lower left hand corner.
Dawkins, who engraved the summons, was a Freemason who was raised in Philadelphia's Lodge No. 1, Ancient York Masons, on September 11, 1759. The following year, Lodge No. 1 was renumbered to Lodge No. 2 and, at the time of this summons, Dawkins was still a member of the lodge. James Bell, at whose house the May 1760 took place, was raised a Master Mason in Lodge No. 2 in January 1760.
Interested in viewing more early printed Masonic documents or taking a closer look at this 1760 summons? Visit the Van Gorden-Williams Library & Archives Digital Collections website, which provides access to images of a diverse selection of documents in the collection, including a 1768 summons engraved by Paul Revere.