George Washington Papers
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To George Washington from Alexandria Masons, 22 December 1797

From Alexandria Masons

Alexa. 22d Decr [1]797

Respected Brother

The Members of Lodge No. 22 Solicit your Company, to Partake of a refreshment at Mr Gadsby’s Tavern, on the 27th Inst, at 6 OClock in the Evening in Celebration of the Anniversary of Saint John—on behalf of the Brethren.1

Henry Rose } Managers
G. Deneale
Wm. B. Page
Robt Young
W. Jones
M. Flanery

L, DLC:GW. The letter is dated “22 Decr 5797.” The Ancient Craft Masons commence their era with the creation of the world, or the “year of Light,” a symbolic reference to the “Light of Masonry,” 4,000 years before the birth of Christ (Darrah, History of Freemasonry, description begins Delmar Duane Darrah. History and Evolution of Freemasonry. Chicago, 1954. description ends 17).

1There is no indication in GW’s diary that he attended the “refreshment.” In DLC:GW there is a printed advertisement, dated 30 Sept. 1797, announcing the publication of The Free-Mason’s Pocket-Book, for the Year 1798, which GW docketed.

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