Grand Lodge regularly receives genealogy enquiries (ancestral research) and is happy to assist in tracing details of relatives who were Scottish Freemasons.
However, beacuse of the way the membership records are kep this is not a straight forward task. The records are held on a Lodge by Lodge basis and are not computerised.
This means that at the very least we need to have a location ideally a specific address for the individual and the time period of spent living at that residence. From this we can examine the membership records of nearby Lodges. This works reasonable well in rural areas where there is usually only one or two Lodges in any given area. However, in large urban areas where there can be dozens of Lodges it is not possible to read through thousands of names in the hope of finding the one in particular.
Ideally therefore the following is required for there to a be realistic chance of finding a given individual in the records:
Date of Birth and Date of Death. This allows us to narrrow the period to be researched. In the absence of these dates an approximate age at death can be helpful.
Places of residence. This allows us to be selective as to the Lodge records places to be searched.
Occupation. This is often helpful when trying to confirm that a particular individual is the one being sought especially when looking for someone with a common name.
When submitting an enquiry please therefore state the person's full name, address(es), DOB & DOD (or age at death) and occupation. Any other information that you have, particularly a Lodge name and number, details from Masonic paperwork (cerificates, membership cards for example) or inscriptions on jewels would be very helpful. In other words please provide as much relevant information as possible!
There is little point in asking: 'Was my Grandfather, Jock Campbell, from Glasgow, a Freemason?" as this is simply insufficient information for a search to be made.
Please note that details such as religious faith or political affiliation are Masonically irrelevant and personal details of this nature are not recorded.
Freemasons' Hall Interior
Images of Freemasons' Hall. More will be added over time - should you wish to see a larger, more detailed version, click on the image.
Grand Hall (East)
Grand Hall looking east. The present Freemasons' Hall was built during 1911 - 1912. It replaced an earlier building that had been on the site since 1858. The previous building was designed by the famous Scottish architect, David Bryce (who was a Freemason), but by the end of the century the building had become too small for the needs of Grand Lodge and it was decided to build a new larger home - the present building.
The Grand Hall is the main meeting place of Grand Lodge. Regular Communications are held in February, June and October (see the Kalander for exact details). The annual installation takes place on the Thursday before St Andrew's Day when that is not a Thursday.
Grand Hall Looking (South)
Typically known as the 'east' (it is in fact the south!) this is where the Grand Master Mason (presently Brother Charles Iain Robert Wolrige Gordon of Esslemont ) and the Grand Lodge Office-bearers sit during communications of Grand Lodge.
Every Scottish Lodge is entitled to send three representatives to Communications of Grand Lodge and these are normally the Master, Senior and Junior Wardens although some Lodges nominate other Lodge members for this duty. These representatives vote on matters laid before Grand Lodge and the process is therefore very democratic. For more details see pages such as Committees' under 'Structure'. Scottish Lodges overseas are normally represented by Proxy Members appointed for that purpose.
Grand Hall Looking (West)
Shown to right is the west side aisle of Grand Hall. The niches hold busts of some of the Past Grand Masters.
Freemasons' Hall is open to the public and tours of the building are provided on week days at 10.00am and 2.00pm. Please note that at certain times tours of the buliding may be unavailable or limited to the Museum only. Please call in advance (0131 225 5577) especially bfore undertaking a long journey.
Freemasons' Hall is open Monday to Friday, 09.00 am - 4.30 pm. Contact details for the Departments within Freemasons' Hall can be found on the 'Departments' page.
Freemasons' Hall - Organ
Scottish Masonic Homes Charter
As a person living within one of the Scottish Masonic Homes you have the following rights -
- To live in a home like atmosphere without fear and free from abuse from carers or others living in the Home.
- To be treated with respect, your dignity preserved, with private space only entered by others with explicit permission and with reasonable share of public space for your use.
- To have access to materials and support to enable you to spend your leisure time as you wish, to maintain established pursuits and to be introduced to new activities.
- To move freely in the Home without fear of violence or harassment.
- To engage in sexual activities and relationships which are wanted and understood.
- To have support to make choices about your life.
- To have your money, goods and possessions treated with respect.
- To have the right to express your wishes and priorities and to be personally involved when plans are made for your care.
- To be given appropriate information about keeping yourself safe and exercising your rights, including access to medical paramedical and nursing attention and advice.
- To be accorded the same respect and support as any other person, regardless of age, gender, sexual orientation or ethnic background when making a complaint or seeking help.
- To be provided with an advocate if this is required.
- To be able to carry out your own financial, legal and other personal business at a time that suits you unless there are legal reasons for you not to do so.
- To be able, if possible, to decide who should know about, and have access to, your personal business. To be able to keep and control your money and your personal belongings unless your individual circumstances mean that specific legal arrangements have been made.
- To be free from recrimination if you make a complaint.
Revised April 2002