The National Heritage Museum is excited to share its recent acquisition of a Masonic weathervane, pictured here. Purchased at auction earlier this year, the weathervane unfortunately does not have a detailed history. But we love the flower that extends at the top, as well as the heart-shaped decorations at the corners. The vane has a prominent square and compasses symbol on its body, leaving us to wonder if it originally adorned a lodge building or the private home of a lodge member.
This weathervane takes its place in our collection alongside three other Masonic ones – each distinctly different. Two of these objects are also pictured here. The one at right has a sunburst, or glory rays, encircling the letter G, which stands for God or Geometry (or both) in Freemasonry. This weathervane probably dates to the early 1900s and may have originally been used on Maryland’s Eastern Shore; the Museum acquired it in 1979.
The third weathervane seen here may have been the base for a larger piece, since it would not turn in the wind as is. The well-known Masonic square and compasses symbol gives it a shape. We only wish we knew what the “MT” on the end of the arrow stood for.
Masonic weathervane, 1900-1940, American, National Heritage Museum collection, Museum purchase through the generosity of Helen G. Deffenbaugh in memory of George S. Deffenbaugh, 2010.004. Photograph by David Bohl.
Masonic weathervane, 1900-1910, American, National Heritage Museum collection, Special Acquisitions Fund, 79.13. Photograph by David Bohl.
Masonic weathervane, 1900-1940, American, National Heritage Museum collection, Museum purchase, 2001.016. Photograph by David Bohl.