Page 63 - Education Programs
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                                       Compiled from Various Sources

                                               Grand Lodge of Texas: February 2003

Until 1971, both February 12 and February 22 were observed as federal holidays to honor the
birthdays of Abraham Lincoln (February 12) and George Washington (February 22). In 1971
President Richard Nixon proclaimed one single federal holiday, Presidents' Day, honoring all past
presidents of the United States of America to be observed on the third Monday of February.

While many Masons know about the Masonic affiliation of Brother George Washington, thirteen
other Presidents have also been Masons. These fourteen Masonic Presidents span the history of
the United States from George Washington to Gerald Ford. February and Presidents’ Day offers
the opportunity for Masons to recognize the contributions of these Brothers to their country.

The fourteen Masonic Presidents are George Washington, James Monroe, Andrew Jackson, James
K. Polk, James A. Buchanan, Andrew Johnson, James A. Garfield, William McKinley, Theodore
Roosevelt, William H. Taft, Warren G. Harding, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Harry S. Truman, and
Gerald R. Ford. The following paragraphs provide a brief summary for each of these Masonic

George Washington, First U.S. President, 1789-1797: George Washington served as the first
President of the United States of America. He was inaugurated on April 30, 1789 and served two
terms as President. Born in 1732, Washington was initiated on November 4, 1752, passed on
March 3, 1753, and raised a Master Mason on August 4, 1753 in Fredericksburg Lodge, Virginia.
He would serve as the Commander in Chief of the Continental Armies during the Revolutionary
War. In 1788, Washington was appointed Charter Master of Alexandria Lodge No. 22, Virginia
during the organization of the lodge and in December 1788, he was elected Master. There is no
evidence that he was ever installed or presided over any meetings of this lodge. While President,
he would act as Grand Master in leveling the cornerstone of the U.S Capitol in Washington, D.C.
on September 18, 1793. During his life, Washington was somewhat active and supportive of
Freemasonry. He died on December 14, 1799, less than three years following his second term as

James Monroe, Fifth U.S. President, 1817-1825: James Monroe was born in Westmoreland
County, Virginia in 1758. Monroe attended the College of William and Mary, fought with
distinction in the Continental Army, and practiced law in Fredericksburg, Virginia. There is some
dispute regarding the Masonic affiliation of Bro. Monroe due to the loss of lodge records. It appears
that he was initiated on November 9, 1775 in St. John’s Regimental Lodge in the Continental
Army. He later affiliated with Williamsburg Lodge No. 6 in Williamsburg, Virginia. There are no
known records to confirm his advancement through the degrees but there is evidence that Monroe
was received as a Master Mason during a visit to a Tennessee lodge in 1819. It is interesting to
note that Bro. Monroe was not yet eighteen when initiated indicating the concept of “lawful age”
had not been universally fixed at twenty-one at this time. Like Washington, Monroe would serve
two terms as President. He died on July 4, 1831 in New York.

Andrew Jackson, Seventh U.S. President, 1829-1837: Born in the backwoods settlement of
Waxhaw, South Carolina on March 15, 1767, Andrew Jackson received sporadic education. But

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