Page 29 - MFM August 2013
P. 29

THE RITE CORNER                              These are honorable legacies but since they
                                                                 are fleeting and without constant nurture
        “Legacy of Masonry”                               and cultivation they will perish as Lewis’ original
                                                          naming of three Montana rivers. I challenge all
         David L. Nielsen, Deputy in Montana              Masons to perpetuate the legacy of Masonry through
                                                          brotherhood, love of the fraternity, good works and
 In the July, 2013, Emessay Notes, published by the
     Masonic Service Association, there was an article    kind words towards all.
entitled “Masonic Explorers Who Left Their Marks.”
The article quotes an article originally in Montana:
The Magazine of Western History in regards to
Meriwether Lewis, probably the first known Mason in
Montana. Meriwether Lewis left marks of his Masonic
affiliation in naming three rivers the Wisdom,
Philanthropy, and Philosophy, now known as the Big
Hole, Ruby and Willow Creek. Interestingly there is
a Wisdom, Montana, which is located in the vicinity
of the Big Hole River. A part of me wishes that these
rivers had maintained their historic naming but I can
understand that aesthetic names just will not stick like
name from the more mundane. We have naming of
other waters by the Lewis & Clark expedition that has
survived time—Gallatin, Jefferson, Madison, Judith
and Clark’s Fork Rivers, to name a few.

 The more philosophical question is what is
       the legacy of Masonry and how will it be
memorialized? From the experience of Lewis in
naming rivers by Masonic values, we know that even
though rivers are perpetual, the names will probably
not endure and will replaced by more common names.
If Masonry needs to be remembered by attachment
of its name or principles to a river, a mountain or any
monument, it is in trouble. The original monument
for Masons was King Solomon’s Temple and it was
totally destroyed by the Babylonians. What has
endured is Masonry as is found in the hearts of
man. The legacy of Masonry is not in buildings
or inanimate objects; it is in the memories of its
members and those who have benefited from its
good works. The Philanthropic legacy of Masonry
will be found in the minds of patients of the Texas
Scottish Rite Hospital for Children and the students
in our RiteCare clinics. The Wisdom of Masonry is
found in the Declaration of Independence and the
Bill of Rights. The Philosophy of Masonry is found
in our traditional honoring of educators in the public

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