By Jeri E. Walker, Office of Development
Photo: The Secret Teachings of All Ages: An Encyclopedic Outline of the Masonic, Hermetic, Qabbalistic & Rosicrucian Symbolical Philosophy, King Soloman Edition, by Manley P. Hall, Illustrations in color by J. Augustus Knapp, published in 1928. Filled with beautiful color plates, but the pages are fraying and the binding is in need of repair.(Jeri E. Walker, Office of Development)
The Supreme Council has created an Adopt-A-Book program as a new way for people to support the Rebuilding the Temple Campaign. As part of the renovation of the House of the Temple, we will be upgrading not only the Atrium, Temple Room, and the building systems, but also the Library’s existing facilities and infrastructure. For example, we will upgrade the building’s electrical and HVAC systems so that the Library will have better lighting and humidity and temperature controls to better preserve our existing collections.
The House of the Temple Library houses over 250,000 books, manuscripts, and other publications dating from the 14th century to the present. Our collections include many rare books that must be restored and maintained in a controlled environment. As part of the building renovations, we will create a specific room to house the rare books and archives of the Library. This room will have a special fire suppression system, temperature, lighting and humidity controls, and security enhancements. You can help us with these renovation efforts by adopting a book in the Library!
The Library’s treasured Masonic collection, which includes important works that are a deep part of Masonic heritage, must be preserved and expanded. For instance, the Library collection contains The Constitutions of the Free-Masons by James Anderson, printed in London, England in 1723. This precious book is both rare and important to Masonic history. It is the first printed promulgation of Masonic law for speculative Freemasonry issued by the first Grand Lodge of England. Additionally, our collection includes the Benjamin Franklin reprint of Anderson’s Constitutions published by Benjamin Franklin at his press in Philadelphia, 1734—the first Masonic book printed in America. Franklin hand typeset and printed 130 copies, less than 20 of which are known to exist today. These rare and prized books, prominently displayed in the Library’s rotunda, are in their original bindings and in reasonable condition for their age. But they need careful attention to insure they are available to future researchers.
We have been fortunate to obtained rare and important Masonic books through donations by our members. For example, an opportunity was presented to acquire a magnificent leather bound volume of the Processus Contra Templarios (The Trial of the Templars) published in 2007 by the Vatican Secret Archives. This volume was translated into Italian and English and is a facsimile of the coerced confessions of seventy-two templar knights to a commission appointed by Pope Clement V from June 28 to July 2, 1308. This extraordinary and rare book, of which only 799 copies were available, was obtained through the generous donation of Ill. Hoyt Samples, 33°, SGIG in Tennessee, and his wife Mitzi in 2008. Then in 2009, Ill. Robert W. Cockerham, 33°, SGIG in Missouri, acquired the 2nd volume of this impressive tome and donated it to our Library to complete the collection. Prominently displayed in a special case, these splendid volumes add a distinct air of beauty and history to our Library.
Our collections are important records of Masonic history and include books that chronicle human ideas, philosophy, spirituality, and accomplishment. Many of our Library’s works are vital to continuing Masonic research and education. Besides the numerous volumes of Masonic importance, the Library is home to collections by great authors such as Bros. Robert Burns, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, and Voltaire. The Library houses a diverse collection that attracts historians, scholars, and knowledge seekers from around the world. By adopting a book, you will help us ensure that these precious books and collections are available for future generations to appreciate and study.
The Adopt-A-Book Program
The new Adopt-A-Book Program will directly benefit the Rebuilding the Temple Campaign, including the renovations to the House of the Temple and its Library and Collections, the building’s infrastructure, and other improvements. You may sponsor a book in the library for $250 (not including rare books). The Librarian will assign a book to you as the sponsor. You will receive special recognition outlined later in this article for participating in the Adopt-A-Book program. If you wish to sponsor a specific rare book, please contact the Development Office. We will take any special request on a case-by-case basis.
Recognition for the Adopt-A-Book Program
By supporting the Adopt-A-Book program you will help us in our mission to preserve the House of the Temple and its national treasure of Masonic works and records and other historical literature.
When you make a gift to the Adopt-A-Book Program we will honor you by displaying your name in a Donor Kiosk in the House of the Temple. You will receive a special thank you letter from the Supreme Council Librarian, a certificate of recognition with your name and the name of the book you are sponsoring, and a commemorative brass House of the Temple bookmark. If you choose to make a gift in honor of someone, you will also receive the above items, and your name, as well as, the name of the person you are honoring will appear in the kiosk. We will also send a notification of the gift, a certificate, and a commemorative bookmark to your honoree or their family.
For more information about the Adopt-A-Book program please contact Barbara Golden at 202-777-3163 or firstname.lastname@example.org. For all other inquiries concerning our Rebuilding the Temple Campaign, please contact the Development Office: Earl Ihle, 33°, Grand Cross, Director of Development, at 1-866-448-3773, email@example.com; Matt Szramoski, 33°, Associate Director of Development, at 1-866-748-3227, firstname.lastname@example.org. You may also visit us online at www.scottishrite.org.
Honor Someone Special
The Adopt-A-Book program is a wonderful way to honor a special person in your life or a way to leave a legacy gift to honor the memory of someone special. This program provides a meaningful opportunity to give a gift to the Rebuilding the Temple Campaign, and, at the same time, honor or memorialize a family member, close friend, brother, or mentor. It’s also a unique way to commemorate special occasions like raising a brother, a 33° conferral, installation as Master of a lodge, a graduation, anniversary, birthday, or retirement.
If you would like to honor someone special through our Adopt-A-Book Program please fill out the form on the inside back cover of this issue of the Scottish Rite Journal. This form will also allow us to have your name and the name of your honoree exactly how you want it to appear in the Donor Kiosk. Donations may be made payable to HOT Fdn. Adopt-A-Book. Please use the special envelope included in this issue of the Scottish Rite Journal to send in your form and donation. We will then send you and your honoree of their family a certificate, letter, and a bookmark.