A group of Master Masons talk about topics of Masonic interest--each from their own unique perspective. You'll find a wide range of subjects including history, trivia, travel, book reviews, great quotes, and hopefully a little humor as well on topics of interest for Freemasons and those interested in the subject of Freemasonry.
The Magnificent George Washington Masonic National Memorial Part 2 of 2
by Midnight Freemason Contributor
WB Gregory J. Knott
In part 1, we explored the exterior and the Great Hall inside the memorial. Further exploration of the ground floor areas finds some exceptional spaces and rooms including two lodge rooms, the replica of the original Alexandria-Washington Lodge No. 22 room and spectacular theater.
The south lodge room is home of Alexandria-Washington Lodge No. 22.This lodge was home of George Washington and was renamed in his honor in 1805.AW22 was first charted in 1783 and met in multiple locations before moving to the memorial.AW22 was instrumental in the founding of the memorial and purchased the first lots on which the memorial sits today.
The replica lodge room is modeled after the original lodge room and contains some important historical artifacts including a chair that Washington used while he was Master of the lodge.
Looking East in the replica lodge room.
Looking West in the replica lodge room.
George Washington’s Chair
On the lower level is a room containing displays titled The Forms and Function of American Freemasonry and talks about the evolution of Freemasonry in the United States. As you enter the display you are greeted by a life size figure of Washington dressed in his Masonic regalia. Further displays have masonic artifacts and a timeline with history of the growth of the fraternity up through modern day.
Washington in The Forms and Function of American Freemasonry exhibit.
To move up the tower to other rooms in the memorial, one takes an elevator. But this is no ordinary elevator. The tower gets smaller as you go higher and so a normal straight up and down elevator would not work. The elevators in the tower are slanted at a 7.5 degree angle to move between the floors.
At the top of the memorial awaits the Observation Deck. An amazing 360° of the Washington metro area awaits you. The Capitol, Washington Monument, the National Cathedral and more are within eye site. There can’t be many more awesome views in the world than from this memorial. Your visit to the memorial will leave you inspired about the life of Washington, his impact on the United States and how the craft played an instrumental role in this development.
WB Gregory J. Knott is the Past Master of St. Joseph Lodge No. 970 in St. Joseph (IL) and a plural member of Ogden Lodge No. 754 (IL), and Homer Lodge No. 199 (IL). He's a member of both the Scottish Rite, and the York Rite, and is the Charter Secretary of the Illini High Twelve Club in Champaign-Urbana. He's also a member of the Ansar Shrine (IL) and the Eastern Illinois Council No. 356 Allied Masonic Degrees. Greg is very involved in Boy Scouts--an Eagle Scout himself, he serves the Grand Lodge of Illinois A. F. & A. M. as their representative to the National Association of Masonic Scouters.