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Published:January 15th, 2010 15:38 EST
Misconceptions about Three Things You Should Know About Freemasonry

Misconceptions about Three Things You Should Know About Freemasonry

By SOP newswire2


Three Things You Should Know About Freemasonry

Unfortunately, in his well-intentioned article aimed at clearing up some of the misconceptions about Freemasonry, Mr. Higgins has perpetuated another: that all Presidents of the United States have been made honorary 32Ëš Masons.   In truth, only 14 of our Presidents are known to have been at least 3rd degree members of the Masonic fraternity:

George Washington (who served as Master of his lodge during the first year of his presidency)
James Monroe
Andrew Jackson (who served as Grand Master of Tennessee some years prior to his election as President)
James K. Polk
James Buchanan
Andrew Johnson
James A. Garfield
William McKinley
Theodore Roosevelt
William H. Taft (who was made a Mason "at sight" two weeks prior to taking the oath of office as President)
Warren G. Harding
Franklin D. Roosevelt
Harry S. Truman (who served as Grand Master of Missouri while a United States Senator, and was coroneted a 33Ëš while serving as President)
Gerald R. Ford (who was coroneted a 33Ëš in 1962)

Lyndon B. Johnson was initiated an Entered Apprentice (the first degree) in 1937 but never proceeded further, and thus is not considered a Masonic president.   It has been widely believed, but never proven, that Thomas Jefferson and James Madison were also Masons.   On the other hand, John Adams did not hold the Fraternity in high esteem, and his son, John Quincy Adams, was elected to Congress following his service as President as a member of the Anti-Masonic Party.

George Washington could not possibly have been a member of the Scottish Rite (which confers the 4th through 32nd degrees and the honorary 33rd degree) as the AASR was not founded until 1801, two years after his death.   As far as I know Warren G. Harding and Franklin D. Roosevelt were our only other Masonic Presidents (besides Truman and Ford) to receive the 32nd degree.

C.K. Leverett, Secretary
Scott Chapter #4 Royal Arch Masons