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Mapping our Photograph Collection - Ymelda Rivera Laxton, Assistant Curator, Scottish Rite Masonic Museum & Library

The Scottish Rite Masonic Museum & Library in Lexington, Massachusetts, is on HistoryPin. HistoryPin is a social media platform developed to help organizations, communities, and individuals share and map their photographs, videos, and oral histories. The Museum & Library launched its own channel in the summer of 2015 and will continue to populate the site with images from our extensive photograph collection. You can find our channel at http://www.historypin.org/channels/view/64613/#!photos/list/. 

The Museum & Library owns hundreds of photographs of Masonic and fraternal organizations from around the world and uses HistoryPin to map these photographs by place and time on an interactive map. Visitors to our site can browse through our photo collection, comment on photographs and videos, and contribute any stories or information they may have about a particular image.

Roof of the World Masonic Lodge, ca. 1914, unidentified maker, Cerro de Pasco, Peru, Gift of Dorothy Krueger, Collection of the Scottish Rite Masonic Museum & Library, 99.051.
The Grand Lodge of Scotland chartered Roof of the World Lodge No. 1094 in Cerro de Pasco, Peru in 1911. Considered the highest Masonic lodge in the world, the lodge met at an altitude of 14,208 feet above sea level. American executives and engineers employed by the various mines and construction camps in Peru made up most of the membership. In 1914 the lodge requested a special dispensation from the Grand Lodge of Scotland permitting them to hold a regular lodge meeting at the summit of Mt. Meiggs in the Peruvian Andes at an altitude of 17,575 feet. The dispensation was granted and on August 29, 1914, twenty-six or so Master Masons held what some believed to be the highest regular meeting of its kind ever held in the history of Freemasonry. This photograph commemorates that 1914 meeting. It was donated to the Museum & Library in 1999.
 The photograph was passed down in the family by the donor’s grandfather George King Phillips III (1869-1939) of Grand Rapids, Michigan. Phillips became a Master Mason in 1902, and among other accolades, received the Supreme Council 33rd° degree in 1920. He served as Grand High Priest of the Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons of Michigan in 1926. The photograph was hung at his office and home, where it was accompanied by a typed caption and a newspaper article from the February 1916 issue of American Tyler-Keystone, a Masonic publication active in the late 1800s and early 1900s. The article reported a monetary contribution of $137.25 to the Masonic War Relief Association of the United States by Roof of the World Lodge No. 1094 in 1916. It also quoted a note from The Secretary of the Lodge about the monumental meeting at Mt. Meiggs. According to the 1914-1915 Grand Lodge of Scotland proceedings there were five active lodges in Peru under its jurisdiction in 1914, including Roof of the World lodge.  The lodge last met in the early 1990s, when it gathered in San Isidro, Lima, Peru.  
Find this photograph and many more on our HistoryPin channel. To learn more about the many online resources we are utilizing to share our digitized collections please visit http://www.monh.org/interact/social-media/ or email Ymelda Rivera Laxton, Assistant Curator, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
George King Phillips III, 1927, in Transactions of the Grand Chapter Royal Arch Masons of the State of Michigan Seventy-Ninth Annual Convocation, Gift of the Supreme Council, 33º, Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite, Northern Masonic Jurisdiction, USA, Collection of the Scottish Rite Masonic Museum & Library, 17.9764 .M624 1927. 

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