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May Brotherly Love Prevail, Masonry on the battlefield and in prison camps

by Richard E. Shields Jr, 185 pages, index, illustrated, A collection of Masonic stories from battlefields of the 1700s to the War in Iraq.  Includes Masonic activity in the prison camps of World War II both in Europe and the Pacific theaters, and what happened to the grand lodges  and their members as the Nazi's overran Europe.  Here's some excerpts from the book:



The Boston Tea Party

In November 1773, indignation ran high in Boston and the rest of the colonies over the tax on tea.  The evening of November 30th (St. Andrews Day) was the time for the annual meeting and election of officers in St. Andrew’s Lodge in Boston. There was always a large attendance at this annual meeting but this night there were so few that the meeting was postponed until December 2nd.  Only seven members had shown up. The secretary closed his record of the meeting with the cryptic but significant notation: “N.B. (no business) Consignees of TEA took up the Brethren’s time.”  Joseph Warren, Paul Revere and their associates were too busy planning a “tea party” and could not make it to the annual meeting of their beloved lodge.

Under a Big Tree

During  August-October, 1942 the Masonic Club at Bukit Timah (Hill of Tin) Prison Camp at Bukit Timah, Malaya met about a dozen times at 5:30pm sitting under a big tree out in the open.  The business of the meeting consisted of memorizing and speaking the rituals.  Safeguards were taken to keep out intruders. The club had some problems with continuing as most of the members would come back to camp late and tired and “browned off.”*


*Greatly annoyed or out of patience.