Our Collections

Library

The main library of the Supreme Council houses the Masonic Collection. In this collection you will find any aspect of Freemasonry available, history, philosophy, symbolism, anti-masonry, poetry, lodge proceedings, periodicals, etc. About 75% of this collection is available on our online catalog.

Masonic Collection

The main Library of the Supreme Council house the Masonic Collection. In this collection you will find any aspect of Freemasonry available, history, philosophy, symbolism, anti-masonry, poetry, lodge proceedings, periodicals, etc. About 75%of this collection is available on our online catalog.

International Collection

International Collection photoFormally established in 1933, the International Collection was dedicated with the following words: “To Universal Freemasonry and especially to those Masonic Bodies with which this Supreme Council holds fraternal intercourse and representation.”It consists of five sections: (1) Manuscripts and correspondence submitted to the Supreme Council (2) Photographs stored in archival-quality boxes in areas with controlled temperature and humidity (3) Material objects displayed in secure cases (4) Foreign periodicals located in the main stacks (5) The Library itself now filling numerous bookcases in the large reading room on the north side of the House of the Temple’s first floor.

With more than 4,000 volumes from 68 countries, the number of items on each country varies widely and ranges from a single book for countries such as Zambia, Korea, and Malta to several bookshelves for countries such as Canada, England, and Germany. Topics cover a broad spectrum of Masonic interest and make this collection a unique source of information about the worldwide Masonic Fraternity.

Robert Burns Library

Robert Burns Library photoDuring his lifetime, Bro. William R. Smith, 32°, former Director of the National Botanical Gardens in Washington, D.C., assembled one of the most complete collections of published works by and about Scottish poet Robert Burns. Recognized as one of the finest of all Burns collections, second only to the Burns Collection in Glasgow, Scotland, it was cataloged by Mr. William Thomson of the Public Library of Edinburgh, Scotland. The industrialist Andrew Carnegie, trustee of Mr. Smith’s estate, decided that because Robert Burns had been an ardent Freemason, it would be appropriate to place the Burns collection in the library of the Supreme Council, with the condition that it be housed in a special room available to the public and community of scholars.

Abraham Lincoln Collection

Abraham Lincoln CollectionThe Library of the Supreme Council was enhanced in February of 1932 by a gift from Dr. Louis D. Carman, 32°, of a distinctive collection of Lincolniana. This noteworthy collection contains 567 volumes and 600 pamphlets from around the time of the Civil War. It illustrates the important influence our sixteenth president’s philosophy and ideals had on our county and the world. The collection has a published Bibliography which includes a facsimile of Abraham Lincoln Freemason by Dr. L.D. Carman.

Other Collections

Also included in the Library are numerous special holdings such as the Claudy Collection on the works of Goethe and the L.M. Taylor Collection of esoteric literature. Each of these contains enough in-depth materials to satisfy the most demanding scholar.

(Library stacks photo at top: ©Maxwell MacKenzie, Washington, D.C.)