Talk:List of Freemasons/Archive 3

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Archive 1 Archive 2 Archive 3 Archive 4 Archive 5 Archive 7

William (Boss) Tweed

I note that JASpencer recently added William M. Tweed (better known as "Boss" Tweed) to the list, and listing the Political Graveyard website as the source. This was removed by MSJapan with the request that we find a better source than the Political Graveyard (which is not always accurate). The idea that Tweed was a Mason seemed unlikely to me. Given his prominence in NY City politics, I find it hard to believe that his membership would not have been discussed by other sources, and it isn't. However, I had to admit that it was possible... So I decided to go right to the source and check the records at the Grand Lodge of New York. The Grand Lodge maintains a fairly extensive membership database (including those who resigned or were kicked out). There is no listing for Tweed. Now, lack of record does not always mean lack of membership... records can be lost. But I think this, coupled with the fact that his membership is not mentioned by other biographies, is enough to challenge inclusion here. Blueboar (talk) 20:43, 9 June 2009 (UTC)

Zvi Levin

there are many sources for Zvi Levin and is relation to the Freemasons (mostly in Hebrew):

What you are providing is "proof" that he was a Freemason... that isn't why we keep removing your contribution. Personally, I do not doubt that he was, but what you or I may think is not enough. The reason why we keep removing his name is that you need to provide a citation to some reliable source that clearly states that Levin was a Freemason.
That said... there are some problems with the items you list above. 1) We can not use the Hebrew Wiki for this... Other wikis are not considered relaible sources on Wikipedia (see WP:V and WP:RS). 2) One does not need to be a Freemason to write about Freemasonry. Do "Habone hahofshi" or "The Freemaons as a way of life" actually state that Mr. Levin was a Freemason? 3) Are there any sources in English? This is not a requirement (Wikiepdia does allow non-english sources), but English sources are preferred... and it would help to resolve the issue beyond doubt.
Then there is the issue of notability. To be included on this list, a person must be considered notable per WP:NOTE. The easiest way for us to establish that is to see if there Wikiepedia has a bio article on the person. May I suggest that you first write up a short bio article on Levin... and then come back and add him to the list (with, as I said above, a citation to show that he was a Mason). Blueboar (talk) 12:17, 27 July 2009 (UTC)

the reason i use hebrew wiki, as proff for him a notable and not only for my "proof that he is what he is, that why i give the other "proof" , he have a value at Hard copy encyclopedia "לחלוצי הישוב ובוניו" of David Tidhar [1] that make him notable in and give the proff i need but it in Hebrew, is book and in the journal of the Israeli Freemasons ,comment many times, about is value, and is position, that some of the "proff" for both issues that you remark for,

and for the value on the English wiki, that what i am intent to do, but it can be catch 22 if that value, editors want me to first proff that he were a Freemason, by ask me to first add it to that list, i thought , it will be simple evoltion that first information on person is only few word, and then it expend , and not the other why.(talk) 12:17, 27 July 2009 (UTC)

I understand that it can be frustrating. The fact that someone is on the Hebrew Wiki does not mean much here... Different Wiki's have different rules. For example, it seems that the Hebrew Wiki does not require citations. That may be ok there, but it definitely isn't allowed here on the English Wikipedia. We are somewhat obscessed by the need to cite things. That does not mean you should not contribute here... it simply means that you have to learn what our rules are, so that when you do contribute you can follow them.
Please be patient and take this step by step (and if you do, all should work out for the best). My first piece of advice would be to see if you can find someone to translate the article from the Hebrew Wiki into English, and use that as the basis for creating a similar article here. There are a lot of people you can call on to help with this. In the meantime, see if you can find a source in English for the basic statement that Levin was a Freemason. Find this and I can help format it so his name can be included on this list. Blueboar (talk) 13:40, 27 July 2009 (UTC)

Swami Vivekanada

An IP editor seems insistant that we mention that Swami Vivekanada was a "Hindu philosopher, reformer and spiritual leader, foremost disciple of the mystic Sri Ramakrishna and the founder of the Ramakrishna Mission. Initiated on 19th February 1884 in Lodge Anchor and Hope in Kolkata, and passed to the degree of F.C on 15th April 1884 and was raised to the degree of M.M on 20th May 1884." (cited to <ref></ref>. I have two issues with this:

First, my feeling is that a simple discription along the lines of "Hindu spiritual leader" (or something similar) is enough. The only reason we include discriptions at all is to prevent misunderstandings... so the reader will say "oh... that Swami Kivekanda". Further details are left to the Bio article.

Second, the citation simply lists his name, and gives no details. So the citation does not support inclusion of when he was initiated passed and raised. Blueboar (talk) 15:02, 17 August 2009 (UTC)

It is obvious that the overly detailed information should not be included, especially if it doesn't even come from the citation used. Further reinsertion should therefore result in a vandalism report, especially if the editor in question refuses to engage in discussion regarding the edit. MSJapan (talk) 18:28, 18 August 2009 (UTC)

Mehmed Talat

Aadagger seems insistant that we mention that this person was central to the Armenian Genocide. Why is this important to mention here? Blueboar (talk) 14:31, 31 August 2009 (UTC)

The importance drives from the importance of being one of the leaders of Committee of Union and Progress and the Armenian genocide in the history, not only the Armenian Genocide. Similar examples can be found in the list. For various names, similar important informations are given. A few examples:
  • Edwin Aldrin: second man on the moon. we can only say that he was an american astronaut, but this would be insufficient.
  • Arthur Leopold Busch:Builder of First Submarine Accepted by the United States Government. If we only say that he was a naval architect that would not be enough
  • Jose Miguel Carrera:Chilean General and President during the early struggle for the independence of Chile. If we only say that he was a Chilean general that would be insufficient as well.
  • Tim Horton:Founder of the donut chain bearing his name.
  • Antonio Luna:founded Philippine's first millitary academy.
  • Sir John A. Macdonald:creation of rail service across Canada.
  • Storm Thurmond: being a segregationist candidate.
There are many other names whose notable actions/events they achieved or did are mentioned, unless they are widely known such as Benjamin Franklin, Goethe or Bach. Therefore being one of the leaders of the Committee of Union and Progress which ruled Ottoman Empire during the first world war and also being responsible for decisions which lead to the events known as Armenian Genocide should be mentioned for their notability and importance. If Mehmed Talat was a widely known figure as Franklin, Goethe or Bach, i assume, he would be put into the list before. Moreover, Blueboar said that (look into page's history)"...all we need to do here is give a brief idea of who the fellow is, not details.", so, being a leader of Committee of Union and Progress and responsible of the Armenian genocide should be mentioned because they give a brief(and complete) idea of who the fellow is. These are not details. --Aadagger (talk) 15:25, 31 August 2009 (UTC)
Actually, I think Aadagger has a point here... but I would deal with the problem the other way around... I think we should remove the puffery from all the other entries. The point of the identifying text is so that our readers can quickly identify the names on the list and distinguish them from anyone who might have a similar name, thus avoiding confusion ("oh... that Ben Franklin"). It isn't to imply to our readers "look how wonderful/dreadful all these Freemasons are ... ain't Freemasonry grand/terrible" (which is what the positive/negative puffery is really all about). If anyone needs further info as to who someone on the list was/is, and what they have done... they can click on the linked name and read the bio article. Blueboar (talk) 15:45, 31 August 2009 (UTC)
First of all, there is no puffery in any information about Mehmed Talat which is given before, if that is what you mean. There might be for other names and if anyone sees any puffery he/she should remove it. Do you say that the brief information given for Mehmed Talat has puffery or do you mean that any information other than relevant to Freemasonry like to which lodge and when the person is initiated is redundant? Removing brief information about the names would be a solution but this time readers would lack a quick and brief info about the person. So if we delete any information about the person and only give to which lodge and when he is initiated we might lower the quality of the article or page, you name it. I think what we should do is to ensure neutrality and give both kinds of dreadful and wonderful yet notable and important brief information about the names. There are lots of heroes, leaders, scientists geniuses given in the list who deserved to be mentioned here. I think it is no harm to put opposite kind of names into the list and give a brief and important information about their dreadful actions, traits or features which would explain why the name is notable and who he is. If this is done, the article will not imply any positivity or negativity to readers about the Freemasons as long as both kinds are treated with neutrality and justly. Now briefly speaking, although removing any info other than to which lodge and when the person is initiated or his notable status for Freemasonry like founding a lodge etc. will be a solution to avoid puffery, I think that would be a excessive use of editing power, instead, I suggest to keep being neutral to any kind of true, important/notable and brief information which makes the name notable to get into this list and give that brief information here to give the reader an idea of who the person is. --Aadagger (talk) 16:41, 31 August 2009 (UTC)
By the way, in how many names is there confusion? I have checked most of the names and I have not seen any ambiguity or confusion. Please give examples from the list as much as possible which can be confused with another person , so that we leave those names out of the subject of this discussion here. --Aadagger (talk) 16:55, 31 August 2009 (UTC)
I would say instead that being a Grand Vizier is enough, or even that he was the first Grand Master of Masons in the area. The Armenian Genocide is a volatile topic, and from reading the article, Talat was not solely responsible, nor does it seem terribly clear as to what exactly was going on. I'm sure a lot of that is from POV on both sides, but I'd rather we stuck to easily verifiable material; as a related example, we have enough trouble trying to keep the Ataturk entry in here, and it has tons of sources. I think we need some explanation of why somebody was famous, as this is a list of famous Freemasons, but at the same time, this list is not a battleground to push one idea or the other, such as repsonsibility for one thing or another. Maybe it simply needs to be reworded, but it's not appropriate as it is now. MSJapan (talk) 21:08, 31 August 2009 (UTC)
To begin with, no genocide is a volatile issue. If a person has any responsibility in any crime against humanity such as genocide, this is an important issue and should be mentioned to give a brief idea of who the person is. Second, Talat was not solely responsible, I agree with you. However, he was the minister of internal affairs at the time and he has the top responsibility in the Armenian Genocide, wikipedia says "Mehmed Talat, when Interior Minister, ordered on April 24, 1915 the arrest of Armenian leaders in Constantinople, and requested the Tehcir Law of May 1915 that initiated the massacres of the Ottoman Empire's Armenian population." and I think it is obvious why he was responsible for Armenian Genocide. I do not think this is an idea or POV but a historical fact given by many sources some of which can be found in Mehmed Talat or Armenian Genocide. I know this is a controversial topic but the dispute is about whether this tragedy is a genocide or not, Mehmed Talat's top responsibility has not been debated, Turkish historians or officials do not deny his responsibility, they deny to call it a genocide, besides I do not think this is the correct place to discuss it. Finally, I do not insist to use the terms "Armenian Genocide" in here. If this would be a better POV then simply say he requested Tehcir Law then leave it to the curious reader,if the reader asks "why is this here?" then he/she will find his/her own answer. But as you have noticed Blueboar began to edit the article to remove any redundant info given here. So only a simple expression, I do not know, maybe a one-to-five word, will be enough. e.g. Buzz Aldrin: Astronaut, C.A. Rosetti: Political Leader, Vicente Lukban: Filipino Politico-military Chief. Now if we remove all the unnecessary info given here there is no problem. Agreed? Aadagger (talk) 09:13, 1 September 2009 (UTC)
The question is why it needs to be mentioned here, in this specific list. I don't think it does. Blueboar (talk) 16:07, 1 September 2009 (UTC)
I think there is a misunderstanding here. I did not say that it must be mentioned here but, as you know, there are many things that does not have to be here in the list which we are fixing now. Those infos are put to give a brief idea of who the person is however we can be even briefer and remove any redundant info given here. So if we want to give a brief idea about Mehmed Talat i think we should put it because it is very important. But we can be even briefer and skip it. There is no difference between mentioning that Mehmed Talat has top responsibility in Armenian Genocide and Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin is the second man on the moon, in their goal of giving brief idea about the person. I don't think both have to be here, either. Aadagger (talk) 17:04, 1 September 2009 (UTC)
Agreed... While my personal feeling is that being the second man to set foot on the moon is significantly more note worthy than being yet another political leader who has been implicated in genocide (it is somewhat common in history), I agree that we don't actually need to mention either claim to fame). Blueboar (talk) 17:41, 1 September 2009 (UTC)

New Ray McWherter Deletion

Taivo, why delete the McWherter entry and not any of the other unreferenced entries (like the Gerald Ford one)? I don't get why you would pick and choose which entries to delete and which to keep. Feel free to respond to that.

( (talk) 05:45, 28 September 2009 (UTC))

I haven't gone through the article with a fine-toothed comb to find every unreferenced name, but when a new name is added without a reference, then I delete that one until there is a reliable reference. I am also not the only editor to remove unreferenced new names. Blueboar sometimes gets to them before I do. With freemasonry, there are so many rumors that reliable sources in a list of who is and who isn't is critical. Thank you for pointing out the Gerald Ford entry--I've added a reference. (Taivo (talk) 11:44, 28 September 2009 (UTC))
I completely agree with Tavio. We have two criteria for inclusion in this list... 1) the person must be notable and 2) the person's membership in Freemasonry must be verifiable. Blueboar (talk) 12:26, 28 September 2009 (UTC)
Ah... I see what the problem was with Ford... somewhere along the line, someone must have removed the citations for all the US Presidents on the list (I know they used to have citations, but none of them currently do). I will fix the problem. Blueboar (talk) 13:07, 28 September 2009 (UTC)
Absolutely right. In any case, this is basic to Wikipedia generally, not just this article. Just because an editor corrects a problem, he is not responsible for correcting every other occurrence of that same problem. Taivo (or anyone else) can delete a single unsourced entry regardless of how many other unsourced entries there may be, waiting for someone to attend to them. Timothy Titus Talk To TT 13:20, 28 September 2009 (UTC)
By the way... the issue is moot... as the McWherter entry now has a citation. But it does highlight the fact that it is time to do another systematic review and clean up of the list... including checking to see that the citations given actually support the claims. (that is a general comment... and not pointed at any secific entry) Blueboar (talk) 13:22, 28 September 2009 (UTC)

Cleaning and conforming

I have done a clean up... conforming all of the entires to the same style, and checking for citations. Blueboar (talk) 13:43, 29 September 2009 (UTC)

Good job, the list is much more readable now :) (Taivo (talk) 14:40, 29 September 2009 (UTC))

Nelson Aldrich

I just tried to chase down some better sourcing for him. Pinging the GLofRI got me the following message. It's not citeable, but FWIW...

Hello Brother Fitzgerald: Nelson Aldrich was Grand Treasurer from 1877 to 1878 and he was a member of our What Cheer Lodge. The Providence Journal did not print many papers about Masonry, I cannot help you there. I looked it up in the list of Past Grand Treasurers. Hope this helps you. Wyman P. Hallstrom Jr., Grand Secretary

--SarekOfVulcan (talk) 18:45, 7 October 2009 (UTC)

Good work... with this confirmation, I think we can accept a "less than perfect" source... but I do think we need to cite something. Blueboar (talk) 17:08, 8 October 2009 (UTC)

The Flinstones

How about Fred Flinstone and Barney Rubble? Both were members of the Water Buffalo Lodge.  Nhl4hamilton | Chit-Chat  09:42, 9 November 2009 (UTC)

Taking this more seriously than it deserves, we don't list members of the Elks or Eagles, so no Buffaloes, thanks. :-) --SarekOfVulcan (talk) 12:45, 9 November 2009 (UTC)
Do the "Water Buffalos" actually exist? The cartoon's producers may have been inspired by the Royal Antediluvian Order of Buffaloes, a Commonwealth fraternal organisation which uses masonic-type regalia, structure, and procedures, and is sometimes referred to in the United Kingdom as "poor man's freemasonry". Timothy Titus Talk To TT 16:12, 9 November 2009 (UTC)
does not matter... Sarek's point is that this list is for notable people who were Freemasons, not members of other groups that used Freemasonry as a model. And before anyone asks, no, being in the "Stonecutters" does not qualify as being a Freemason either (so Homer Simpson is out). Blueboar (talk) 16:37, 9 November 2009 (UTC)
A very confused anonymous editor has already tried it; I reverted their entry back on 28 October. They managed to offer Bart instead of Homer, and they put him in the "C" section instead of "S". Incidentally, yes we all know its only Freemasons here - just trying to steer poor old Nhl4hamilton towards a more convenient home for Fred and Barney. Timothy Titus Talk To TT 21:54, 9 November 2009 (UTC)
Ah... in that case, I would say, no... I think the cartoon Water Buffalo were based more on the Elks , Moose, and other such American fraternal orders than on the Commonwealth fraternity of the AOB. (Actually, I would bet that the Water Buffalos were originally concieved as nothing more than a "stone aged" version of the "Raccoon Lodge" that Ralph Cramden and Norton belonged to in the Honeymooners TV show. the Flintstones was based heavily on that show).
However, this really isn't the place to discuss all that. Article talk pages should be for discussing the article, not tangentially related topics. Blueboar (talk) 22:30, 9 November 2009 (UTC)
Yes, indeed, under the usual Wikipedia restrictions. (Taivo (talk) 23:27, 9 November 2009 (UTC))


Should we move this page to "List of Notable Freemasons"? (Taivo (talk) 14:43, 8 December 2009 (UTC))

I often think the same thing ... but according to Wikipedia:Lists (stand-alone lists)#Naming conventions, the word "Notable" is assumed and should not be included. Blueboar (talk) 14:55, 8 December 2009 (UTC)
I guess it's just our lot in life to keep reverting the IP who wants his second cousin included. (Taivo (talk) 15:24, 8 December 2009 (UTC))
Yup... face it, this list is always going to be a vandalism magnet. I don't think the vandalism on this page would stop, even if we did include the word "notable" in the title. Most of it is being done by school kids who think it amusing to add their names and/or the names of their classmates. The names they add are not even Freemasons, much less notable ones. One of the unfortunate side effects of Wikipedia being "the encyclopedia that everyone can edit" is ... everyone does. Blueboar (talk) 16:55, 8 December 2009 (UTC)

Infamous Freemasons

Why are they ommited on this list? Like Guiseppe Mazzini? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:55, 18 December 2009 (UTC)

We do not "omit" anyone, at least not on purpose. You have to realize that this list is a work in progress. I am sure that there are many notable Freemasons who are not yet on the list. If you know of someone who is missing from the list, and can provide a reliable source to support addition, let us know and we will be happy to add him. Blueboar (talk) 14:01, 18 December 2009 (UTC)

Thomas Arne

Arne was not a freemason, despite what it might say in John Hamill's otherwise generally excellent book, cited as the source of this information. This is ironic since in the Library and Museum of Freemasonry at the United Grand Lodge of England in Great Queen Street, London WC2 - where incidentally Hamill worked - the biographical file on Arne is quite clear that the United Grand Lodge of England has no evidence what-so-ever to link Arne with freemasonry. Indeed, in this file one reads successive letters to this effect, sent over the years by various librarians and archivists to a steady stream of hopeful enquirers about Arne and the Craft. Doubly ironic then that the United Grand Lodge's own website actually claims Arne to have been a freemason, despite its own records to the contrary.Ucypanp (talk) 14:15, 18 December 2009 (UTC)

Unfortunately, we can not take an editors word for it (that is what is called Original Research here on Wikipedia)... We can only go by what reliable sources tell us. In some ways, this is similar (although less controvercial) to the Ataturk entry, where there is debate over whether someone actually was a Mason. At the moment, we have multiple reliable sources that say Arne was a Freemason. If you can point us to a reliable source that actually states that he was not a Mason (or even one that questions his membership and points out the lack of information in the records), then we can remove him... or at least add a note saying that there is debate. Blueboar (talk) 14:38, 18 December 2009 (UTC)
There are no reliable printed sources - sad to say - since none of them, so far as I know, actually cite primary evidence, only secondary (second-hand) sources; several English-speaking Grand Lodges' websites have Arne on their 'famous masons' list. As I suggest in my previous discussion-post It is all wishful thinking as far as hard evidence is concerned. But hey, I only share this for discussion. It is hardly the worst thing in the world that freemasons (and this page) continue to claim Arne as 'of the Craft' - with no real evidence to sustain the claim. Anyhow, this is a great page ... glad you are here, and making the list.Ucypanp (talk) 14:53, 18 December 2009 (UTC)
Wikipedia actually prefers secondary sources over primary ones. Blueboar (talk) 14:58, 18 December 2009 (UTC)
Must say I'm very surprised by this suggestion. John Hamill (who, incidentally, still works in Freemasons' Hall, Great Queen Street, London, albeit no longer in the Library & Museum) is a first-rate researcher. I have attended many of his lectures in person, and I am always impressed by the amazing precision of his work, with everything checked and double-checked, and cited.Timothy Titus Talk To TT 19:17, 18 December 2009 (UTC)

Sorting by Degree

Would it be an idea to sort/arrange the members by degrees, putting them in their own section? if you know what i mean —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:11, 24 August 2010 (UTC)

The only time it seems applicable is if they are 33 honorary in the Scottish Rite, or never completed their blue lodge (like Lyndon Johnson who only did his E.A. according to some lists). Otherwise it would just become a listing of people by auxiliary organizations (you will begin to notice a pattern of NO ONE being listed SR 4-31 degree, no one in the 4-6 in York, etc.) and many people join multiple.Coffeepusher (talk) 07:12, 16 September 2010 (UTC)
It would also be very complicated, given the multi-national nature of this list. The American system (with either York Rite or Scottish Rite) is quite different from the English/European/Commonwealth system. Likewise, some on the list are doubtless part of the Swedish Rite as worked in Scandinavian countries, which is again quite different. I think the logistics alone would make the suggestion impractical. Timothy Titus Talk To TT 11:35, 16 September 2010 (UTC)
We would also have a lot of difficulty with verifiability. It is fairly easy to find reliable sources that note that someone joined the fraternity... it is very difficult (and often impossible) to find reliable sources that note which degrees they took. It was a good faith idea... but impractical on many fronts. Blueboar (talk) 14:05, 16 September 2010 (UTC)

Deleting sourced entires

To whom it may concern... Please stop deleting the Ataturk entry. I realize that his membership is controversial, but the list entry cites multiple reliable sources (far more than for any other entry) that all state he was a Mason, he so qualifies for inclusion in this list. Please see the previous discussions in the Archives on this topic. Removal without discussion will be treated as vandalism and reverted. Blueboar (talk) 21:06, 30 May 2009 (UTC)

5 references were given for the freemasonary of Ataturk, however 3 of them are either not working or obsolete and removed webpages. What remains for the proof of freemasonary of Ataturk are two webpage links and they also just give a list of notable freemasonary. That is to say these references are not reliable and they also need references for their own claim of Ataturk's freemasonary. Until a reliable source is found for this issue, removing Ataturk from the list would be a more objective move. Aadagger --Aadagger (talk) 09:37, 7 August 2009 (UTC)

Valid point on the broken refs. I have replaced them with some others... I think this is more than enough to re-add him to the list. Blueboar (talk) 12:29, 7 August 2009 (UTC)

I have read your discussions about the masonary of Ataturk on the archives and also other discussions under the topic of Ataturk. I find it benefitial to quote following sentences in discussing this which I encountered under Ataturk.

A Freemason website is probably not a sufficient source for the contentious assertion that Ataturk was a Freemason. I suggest that we find a 3rd-party source for this.

Will Beback talk 20:37, 28 May 2009 (UTC)

A Freemasonry magazine is obviously going to be a biased source when it comes to memberhip in the Freemasons. Considering how contentious the topic is, I suggest that we need to find better sources for extraordinary assertions like this.

Will Beback talk 00:49, 7 June 2009 (UTC)

Again freemasonary resources to prove Ataturk's freemasonary are not reliable. Also here I give a reference from the personal website of columnist and renowned Ataturk documentarist Can Dundar. The reference ([2]) is from a newspaper (Haber Express) columnist, Birol Keskin. He writes that he attended a conference about "Republic and Ataturk" organized by the Izmir Lodge and there Can Dundar stated Ataturk had never been a mason and when the discussions about banning masonary were going on, some mason PMs asked Ataturk to join and lead the lodge, then Ataturk asked "To which lodge your lodge is bounded?" and they replied "Italian Lodge" and Ataturk responded " My people honored me titling me national hero . How can I be bounded to another nation? How can you ask this?", given the nationalist nature of Ataturk the story sounds plausible, also Can Dundar compiled his findings on a book "Yükselen Bir Deniz"([3]) where this story is also included with the documental facts. Since it may be hard to find this book outside Turkey or in other languages than Turkish, I had to refere to Can Dundar's website. Long story short, due to freemasons Ataturk was a mason on the other hand due to documental facts found by journalist Can Dundar, Ataturk was not a mason. Which sounds more reliable?

As far as I know wikipedia does not host non-verifiable and controversial information. There is no point in insisting such a biased information. That is why I remove Ataturk from the list. --Aadagger (talk) 16:15, 7 August 2009 (UTC)

Freemasonry is a very ancient social movement, on an enormous international scale. Masonic research is carried on at a high academic level in many European Universities, some of which have whole departments devoted to masonic study. I do not understand your assertion that a masonic magazine is likely to be biased. What benefit could there possibly be to Freemasonry in claiming as a member, someone who was not in fact a member? There are thousands of leading statesmen, and political, religious, military, and social leaders (as well as explorers, inventors, scientists, social reformers and others) whose membership of Freemasonry is well documented. What possible reason could sensible academics, writing in masonic periodicals, have for 'inventing' masonic membership for Ataturk. With respect, whilst he is a significant figure, especially in Turkey, on the world scene he is just "one more player". Freemasons have nothing to gain from falsely claiming that he was a member. Questioning masonic academic research is not a good basis for dismissing masonic sources. Independent sources have been quoted, in accordance with Wikipedia policy, and Ataturk should therefore be included in the list. Timothy Titus Talk To TT 18:46, 7 August 2009 (UTC)

I think the motivation behind this biased information relates to how an important figure Ataturk is for both the Turkish people and specially the Turkish army. Given that the influence and power of the Turkish army in both Turkish politics and some international issues, this can be understandble;of course this might be my own idea. On the other hand as you said he is a significant figure in Turkey and actually there is not even a single figure comparable to Ataturk's significance. I understand your point in totally dismissing masonic researchers, but, since Ataturk's status as a mason is not clear and there are 3rd party resources,as I noted before, which claim that Ataturk was not a mason he should be excluded from this list.

Another thing that bugs me in these kind of lists is that the information relating to lists are not supported by individual wikipedia entries. For instance, there is no information about masonary of Ataturk under Ataturk entry, since being a mason is an important property of an individual and should have been mentioned there, there appears to be a confliction within wikipedia. Two entries do not seem to be supporting each other, also there is a similar issue for Winston Churchill. In my opinion if there is no objective, 3rd party resource the person should be excluded.--Aadagger (talk) 20:03, 7 August 2009 (UTC)

Aadagger, even if I were to agree with you on the Masonic websites (which I don't... who better to know if someone had joined a Masonic lodge than the Masons themselves), the entry does not rely purely on Masonic websites... You may have missed that I have added: Hamill, John and , Gilbert, R. A., Freemasonry: A Celebration of the Craft‎, published by Paul & Company, 1992, ISBN:0951635522. This is exactly the sort of third party source you have asked for.
That said, I think part of the problem with Ataturk is that he did close down the Masonic Lodges when he became President of Turkey... and I can understand why people as the question: Why would someone attack an organization that he belonged to? My answer (and this is purely my own speculation) is that he joined Freemasonry as a young man, and quickly became disillusioned (it happens when men join for the wrong reasons). When he moved away from Thesilonika he probably let his membership fade and never joined another lodge. Effectively he stoped being a Mason. That doesn't change the fact of his initiation, however.
Perhaps the way to settle this is to add a comment, stating that he subsequently supressed Freemasonry in Turkey while President. This would at least let readers know that he was not an active supporter. Would that solve your POV issue? Blueboar (talk) 22:44, 7 August 2009 (UTC)

Blueboar, unfortuanetly I do not have a copy of Hamill, it looks like there is no even a copy of Hamill in nearby libraries, so I do not know which resources or references that he used to cite Ataturk as a freemason, and I suspect those references are masonic too. On the other hand, as I previously noted, Can Dundar a famous Ataturk documentarist claims that Ataturk had never been a mason. So according to him your theory about Ataturk is false and there is no effectively stopping being a mason, he was not one at all. Moreover existence of Ataturk's name on this list creates a confliction within Wikipedia. In the light of these facts, not only the confliction but also the absence of reliable resources, it would be best to remove Ataturk from the list due to Wikipedia policies. --Aadagger (talk) 23:21, 7 August 2009 (UTC)

So go to a library further away... or ask someone else to go to a library further away... or (easist of all) purchase the book on Amazon. Please read WP:V... The fact that you personally can not verify a source, right this miniute, does not matter... what matters is that it can be verified. We have a reliable third party source that says he was a Mason... and multiple first party sources that back this fact up. I am sorry that you don't like it, but in accordance with Wikipedia's rules, you have no grounds to remove the entry. I am willing to continue to discuss wording options, but will no longer accept your simply deleting the entry. If you continue to remove cited information, I will treat it as disruptive POV vandalism. Blueboar (talk) 23:39, 7 August 2009 (UTC)

Now I see John Hamill is a famous freemason. So he cannot be an independent, 3rd party or objective resource, that we need on this issue. --Aadagger (talk) 23:35, 7 August 2009 (UTC)

So what if he is a Freemason... he is also a respected historian. He is quite objective. What possible motive does he have for inventing facts? Blueboar (talk) 23:41, 7 August 2009 (UTC)
There's really no reason for a Mason to be biased when it comes to who else is a Mason; it's an item of pure interest, and it really doesn't work to anyone's advantage. Furthermore, no one is famous because they are or were a Mason; it's an informational footnote for a person who has many other accomplishments that never have anything to do with their membership. Most importantly, just about the only people who can correctly interpret Masonic records are other Masons, because they have an interest in doing so. So, I'm not sure where bias fits in here, because I would rather we had a source from a qualified researcher than from some random other person. If that's bias, anyone researching their own country's, state's, city's, etc, history would be biased, and that makes no sense. So at some point the bias argument has to be mooted. MSJapan (talk) 23:51, 7 August 2009 (UTC)
MSJapan, the origin of the claims of Ataturk's masonary is also from Turkey or from Turkish masons, so I think your point that anyone researching his own country's history would be biased backs my point. What other masons doing is to refere to resources from Turkey. By the way if it is Can Dundar you think a random person, I have to say that you are wrong, he has a renowned Turkish journalist, an important media figure and the most known Ataturk documentarist.
I am not in a position to question his credibility or objectivity. I did not say he invented facts. But previously you said that he is an independent resource, but this is not true.--Aadagger (talk) 23:52, 7 August 2009 (UTC)
I am sorry, but I simply do not accept the argument that anything written by a Freemason is not independent of Freemasonry... by your logic, Can Dunbar is not independent either, because he is a Turk... and the claim that Ataturk wasn't a Mason must therefore be just as biased and unreliable as the claim that he was.
The reality is that we have different equally reliable sources that say opposing things. Now, WP:NPOV says that when this occurs, we should present both viewpoints neutrally. So, (once again) I am more than willing to discuss options as to how to re-word the entry to account for the view point that Ataturk was not a mason... but deleting the entry completely is not an option. 00:26, 8 August 2009 (UTC)
I say that Can Dundar is more reliable than any mason historian on this issue because he is a journalist and Ataturk documentarist, it has nothing to do with his nationality. Please do not misinterpret my words. I would understand that giving two different opinions if this was not wikipedia but a discussion forum. My point is that masonic resources are not sufficient to put Ataturk's name on the list while there are documental facts that Ataturk had never been a mason, and all I hear that the masonic resources such as John Hamill are reliable, again and again but no claim of documented fact on if Ataturk was a mason. I agree that John Hamill would be a reliable source if we were discussing masonary in general, its history, organization etc. but not on this issue. --Aadagger (talk) 01:01, 8 August 2009 (UTC)
OK, first... We must give two different opinions precisely because this is Wikipedia and not some discussion forum... WP:NPOV is a core policy of Wikipedia, and it clearly states:
  • The policy requires that where multiple or conflicting perspectives exist within a topic, each must be presented fairly.
So... one last time... If you wish to discuss how to best present both viewpoints fairly, I will listen and work with you... but if you insist on disrupting this article by removing cited material, then our discussion is over and your disruptive behaviour will be reported to WP:ANI.
Second... you do not have "documental facts". What you have is Dumbar's opinion, based on his interpretation of something Ataturk said (At least I assume he said it... does Dumbar say where the quote came from?). there are other ways to interpret what Ataturk said (One obvious one: Since there were multiple Masonic Jurisdictions with lodges in Turkey at the time, Ataturk's question as to who the lodge in question was bound to was important to him politically... his objection wasn't that he disliked Masonry... it was that the lodge in question was under Italian control. Who knows, he might have accepted if the lodge was under the jurisdiction of an independent Turkish Grand Lodge.) Blueboar (talk) 02:58, 8 August 2009 (UTC)
Third and final... Blueboar (talk) 02:58, 8 August 2009 (UTC)

Good morning - we're just waking up here in England, and I see I've missed a lot of discussion overnight! Aadagger, I just want to pick up on your earlier comment about Winston Churchill. I do totally agree with you that it is a similar situation, in that Churchill joined Freemasonry as a young man, was initially very active, but having risen to political power had little or no time for Freemasonry. Interestingly, he was even involved with discussions about closing English masonic lodges - though this was not a political move, but a security consideration in the face of a possible German invasion. However, just because Churchill was inactive as a Mason in his later life (his politically famous life) it does not alter the fact that he was a mason as a young man - his membership records (and even his regalia) are held at the Masonic Library and Museum in London. Ataturk's attitude towards Freemasonry in later life is a matter of debate; but it does not alter the fact that sources demonstrate he was a mason as a young man. Timothy Titus Talk To TT 08:51, 8 August 2009 (UTC)

Timothy, thank you for your kind reply. The sitiuation is a little different for Ataturk and Churchill. According to resources, as you have noted, Churchill joined the freemasonary but later stopped being an active one, and I do not know if there is anyone claiming Churchill never joined the freemasonary, which I see there is not, however in Ataturk's sitiuation there are other researchers than masonic historians who find that Ataturk had never been a freemason. Those resources such as John Hamill are just citing other masonic resources. In the wikipedia page there are three references given to Ataturk's masonary. One from Abbey Lodge,UK, one from John Hamill, and the only Turkish one is Kaya Pasakay.
Kaya Pasakay states that, without giving any references, Ataturk was initiated in 1907 into Lodge Veritas - warranted by the French Grand Orient - in Salonica. In addition, Kaya Pasakay cannot be taken as a trusted resource since he is the only Grand Master expelled from the "Hur ve Kabul Edilmiş Masonlar Locası", the most known Lodge in Turkey. The reason to his expellsion from the lodge was that he lied to the lodge about his background. He told to the lodge that he was an ex-ambassador and an ex-diplomat, but it is later found out by other masons that in fact, he only worked for the ministry of foreign affairs of Turkey for 3 years and was never promoted and left the ministry as a low ranking member of the staff. After all these facts I find it hard to believe that taking masonic resources citing Kaya Pasakay as an other perspective on the issue. Clearly there is no evidence or record of Ataturk in masonic lodges, but rumors raised by freemasons and other masonic historians citing these rumors. Moreover Can Dundar's work is not his opinion but his findings depend on the memoirs of the mason PMs of the time and masonic records.
Given that there is no record of Ataturk, and the only original resource is Kaya Pasakay and consedering his credibility and lack of evidence, Ataturk's name should be excluded from the list untill a trustworthy resource is found. I believe this is what WP:NPOV expects us to do, obviously Blueboar is misinterpreting the wikipedia policies. At this point I suggest to request a WP:Third opinion. Is this OK? --Aadagger (talk) 11:52, 8 August 2009 (UTC)
OK, following on my comments, I have started the ball rolling and have added a statement accounting for Dundar's claim that Ataturk was not a Mason, per NPOV (and no, I am not misinterpreting the policy... feel free to ask about it at the policy talk page). Blueboar (talk) 12:08, 8 August 2009 (UTC)
Aadagger... given your last edit... I assume you are now satified? Blueboar (talk) 16:22, 8 August 2009 (UTC)
I actually am not. I will look into Andrew Mango's Ataturk biography if there are any supporting material in it and let you know.--Aadagger (talk) 23:55, 8 August 2009 (UTC)

I found another source on Ataturk and masonary. Murat Ozgen Ayfer, Grande Lodge Liberale De Turquie,([4])(2000-2004) in response to a question "Was Ataturk a mason?" on this video,unfortuanetly it is in Turkish, ([5]) says "Masons expect and believe that he was a mason, even western sources cite Ataturk as mason.However, there is no record and it has not proven whether Ataturk was iniated up to present." So even though some Turkish masons believe Ataturk was a mason; there is no explicit evidence, record or whatever to give proof to his masonary. So since Ataturk's masonary is not verifiable and due to WP:Verifiability, I again suggest to remove his name from the list. Please give your responses.--Aadagger (talk) 00:31, 9 August 2009 (UTC)

Read the very first sentence of WP:Verifiability... "The threshold for inclusion in Wikipedia is verifiability, not truth — that is, whether readers are able to check that material added to Wikipedia has already been published by a reliable source, not whether we think it is true." In other words, it does not really matter whether Ataturk was, or was not, actually a Mason. What matters is that multiple reliable sources are of the opinion that Ataturk was a Mason, and that other reliable sources are of the opinion that he was not a Mason. As long as we account for this discrepancy of opinion, and mention both view points, it is appropriate to keep him on the list.
I would have no objection to changing the caveat to read: "Disputed - According to several Turkish sources, Ataturk was never a Mason" (which would allow for multiple refs to reliable sources that say this). But, since there are reliable sources that say he was a Mason, I would definitely object to removing his name from the list. Blueboar (talk) 02:31, 9 August 2009 (UTC)
If citations to websites are a problem - and I sub it that they are, given that websites are ephemeral by nature, all one needs to do is go to the library and crack a book. Also, if it hasn't been said before, the fact that a well regarded historian is a mason should not be a problem with citing his works. Particularly those who like Hamill follow the authentic school know what they are doing, and have absolutely zero to gain, and much lose, by claiming masonic membership for those whose membership is not reliably known or provable. kcylsnavS{screechharrass} 19:39, 18 September 2010 (UTC)

Questionable entries

I have noted a few entries on the list that, while I have certainly seen listed on many lists of famous masons, I have found some rather well sourced refutations.

The following website maintains a list of famous non-masons often thought to be, presented as masons:

In addition, a separate list of "infamous" non-masons is maintained:

Particular names that I would raise are Louis Armstrong (more here:, Gustave Eiffel, Nathan Bedford Forrest, Aleister Crowley, and Santa Anna (the latter two contained in the Masonic Info site's list.

Having read some of the previous discussions on whether or not to include particular names, I thought it best to raise these issues here first before making any edits. In addition to questions of reliability of sources, these disputes also raise broader questions of what constitutes a mason. I'd be interested to hear others' thoughts on these issues.PoliSciMaster (talk) 17:52, 30 September 2009 (UTC)

I agree that certain pieces of evidence are more reliable than others. I also think that this list should be confined to regular Freemasonry. If we open the floodgates to anyone who belonged to any old body that called itself "Masonic", then we have no objective standard on what is and is not a "Masonic organization". (Taivo (talk) 20:40, 30 September 2009 (UTC))
Well, I would avoid the term "regular" Freemasonry - only because there is disagreement among Masons as to what is and is not "regular"... for example not everone agrees as to whether those who belong to Continental Style Grand Orients are regular. And there is some disagreement (even within Prince Hall) as to which Prince Hall jurisdictions are "regular" and which are not. Let us say instead that we include those who are members of generally accepted branches of Freemasonry. Also, there is disagreement over certain individuals as to whether they were or were not Masons... When this occurs, we should note the disagreement (see, as an example, how we deal with Attaturk). Blueboar (talk) 21:39, 30 September 2009 (UTC)

I don't see in the list.. here is a sources for that (sorry if I put this in the wrong spot)

As good a spot as any other... I would be happier if we had something more reliable than just the website of a local lodge. Some local lodge websites can be reliable, but many are not. A lot rests on the scholarship of the lodge's webmaster. In general, I would tend to trust a local lodge website if it claimed that a famous person was a member of that specific local lodge (as the lodge would have the records to back the claim), but would be inclined to be somewhat skeptical for other claims of membership. Blueboar (talk) 15:56, 18 February 2010 (UTC)

Arthur Edward Waite

I am not a registered user and cannot post since this is a protected page. I also have a hardback book that says Waite was a mason as well. If the link below isn't enough I can dig the book out and give that information to you.

I am pretty sure the book lists William Wynn Westcott as well.

The book is called "Facts for Freemasons" by Harold Van Buren Voorhis. It has an extensive list of masons in it. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:45, 10 December 2009 (UTC) —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:38, 10 December 2009 (UTC)

Arthur Edward Waite is remembered as a well-known author on Freemasonry. As a masonic writer he draws some controversy. You can find an in-depth discussion about him at , which reports that he was initiated on September 19, 1901, in Runymede Lodge No. 2430 at Wraysbury in Buckinghamshire, England. "He was popular with his fellow-members of Runymede Lodge, who saw him in a dual role: primarily as the London Manager of Horlick's Food Company (a post he held from 1900 to 1909) and, less importantly, as an enthusiast for esoteric subjects." Id. I'm not sure whether or not he meets the criteria to be on this list, so I'll leave that decision to someone else. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Svanslyck (talkcontribs) 18:53, 23 May 2010 (UTC)
  • Having looked over Waite, its seems to me he was pretty notable apart from just being a mason. I say he be added to the list. What say you all? kcylsnavS{screechharrass} 13:39, 24 May 2010 (UTC)

Famous Freemasons associated with the French Revolution

May I direct your attention to this article:, which describes the role of freemasons during the periods of the French Revolution and Bonaparte's imperial rule. It provides a number of interesting names as prominent freemasons, including Dr Joseph-Ignace Guillotine (who invented the Guillotine), the Marquis de Lafayette, Jean-Paul Marat, four of Bonaparte's brothers and others. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:37, 5 January 2010 (UTC)

your link may be bad... at least it does not work for me. Blueboar (talk) 15:44, 5 January 2010 (UTC)
Don't know what the deal is, but that link is cached at --SarekOfVulcan (talk) 16:12, 5 January 2010 (UTC)
Thanks Sarek. The article is quite superficial... I suppose it could be used to support an addition... but there are probably better sources available for all of these people. Blueboar (talk) 16:18, 5 January 2010 (UTC)

free masons now

jay z blacked eyed peas and so on —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:54, 25 January 2010 (UTC)

Probably just rumor... in any case, we would need verification to add them to the list. Supply a reliable source that says someone is (or was) a Mason and we will be happy to add them. Blueboar (talk) 18:02, 25 January 2010 (UTC)

Looks like Stephen Harper is also a Freemason and Queen Elizabeth II based on this photo on (note the handshake) —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:13, 16 June 2010 (UTC)

Cute... but not reliable. Blueboar (talk) 12:39, 16 June 2010 (UTC)

Freemasons and the Royal Society

The Library and Museum of Freemasonry (London, UK) has produced a free, downloadable PDF document containing details of freemasons associated with the Royal Society (currently celebrating 350 years). This is to coincide with the Museum's current exhibition on the same theme. Click here for details of the exhibition and a link to the PDF. This document should authoritatively help to augment this list? Ucypanp (talk) 14:41, 28 January 2010 (UTC)

For some reason it does not come up when I try to link to the PDF. Never the less, given that it is linked to by the Library and Museum of Freemasonry, I would say it definitely qualifies as a reliable source... so yes... feel free to augment our list from it. Blueboar (talk) 00:36, 29 January 2010 (UTC)
The link is to a PHP webpage, which might explain the problem of there being no PDF (i.e., there isn't one there), so I would like to see that the PDF exists prior to any additions being made that are sourced from it. MSJapan (talk) 15:29, 29 January 2010 (UTC)
Absolutely. Let me rephrase... I trust the Library and Museum of Freemasonry to compile an accurate list of Royal Society members who were Freemasons. So, potentially, this PDF strikes me as something that is likely to be a reliable source. However, we obviously should not use it until someone has actually seen it. Blueboar (talk) 15:35, 29 January 2010 (UTC)
Ah, yes, I see, it is not entirely clear. So, from the main library introductory page (given above), you need to use the link relating to the exhibition, given in the text there: Freemasons and the Royal Society.
Then, on that information page the PDF link is in the third paragraph from the end ...
"Alphabetical List of Fellows of the Royal Society who were Freemasons. This list comprises more than 350 names listed alphabetically by surname. The complete list with appendices comprises over 120 pages and is searchable using the Edit/Find buttons. The list can be downloaded here".
The PDF does seem a little buried when approached this way ... but I hope this helps track it down?
All best ... Ucypanp (talk) 18:29, 7 February 2010 (UTC)
Ucypanp... have you been able to access the document yourself... I only ask because that was the link I tired (the one that I found did not work for me). The glitch may be at my end. Blueboar (talk) 21:26, 7 February 2010 (UTC)
Yes, Blueboar, you are right, it is not working consistently! When I accessed this previously it via my work-place (a mega-fast local network) and was fine, but when I try from home, i.e. just now, using a regular UK domestic (sluggish) broadband it does not work, or at least seems to sit loading for a long time, and I cannot be bothered to wait for ever. The document IS very large. Maybe try from another location? It is worth it.
Use your judgement here... remember that sources do not need to be accessible on-line and instantaniously. If you say that you have personally accessed the document, then that is good enough for me. Given the host site, I would tend to trust the document for any but the most controvercial of claims. So... if you wish to add someone and cite the document, I will not object. Blueboar (talk) 16:15, 18 February 2010 (UTC)

Dumas, Zola, Giral, Aranda

I need info (lodges, dates of initiation, grades) for Dumas (father and son), Zola, Verne, Giral, count Aranda, Amadeo of Savoy and many others. I'll write new names after. I'd much appreciate this info. I am a historian from Russia. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Mknyazev (talkcontribs) 04:07, 26 March 2010 (UTC)

Looking through the usual reliable sources, none of the people you list can be confirmed as being Freemasons. Sorry. Blueboar (talk) 13:47, 26 March 2010 (UTC)

Edit request from TifosiMac, 5 April 2010

Please Add Gunning Bedford, Jr to the list of Freemasons. He was the first Grandmaster of Delaware and as such should be listed here. I have included a reference to our Grand Lodge website which should suffice, if not, go to that site, there are sufficient links therein which will suffice. [6]

TifosiMac (talk) 11:29, 5 April 2010 (UTC)

Done (Bedford was also a signer of the US Constitution, and so is notable enough for inclusion) Blueboar (talk) 13:25, 5 April 2010 (UTC)

Edit request from Guvale, 11 April 2010

{{editsemiprotected}} I am a brother from Switzerland. I would be able to update this page, as I dedicate myself to the study of the history of our honorable Order. Thanks and a Triple Fraternal embrace. Guvale (talk) 09:45, 11 April 2010 (UTC)

Hello brother! In order to edit this page, you will need to either be autoconfirmed. Simply put, to be autoconfirmed, your account must be 4 days old and you must have 10 total edits. You can see this information by clicking on "my preferences" at the top of the page. You can make your edits in the testing sanbox if you like. If you need any more help, feel free to leave me a message, or pop into the live help chat, with this or this.
Edit request Not done, since there was no request. Avicennasis @ 10:28, 11 April 2010 (UTC)
Once you are able to edit this page, your contributions will be welcome. Please remember that we require citations to reliable sources... included with your contribution ... this is especially true for living people. Blueboar (talk) 12:40, 11 April 2010 (UTC)

Edit request from, 19 April 2010

{{editsemiprotected}} Norm Coleman, former U.S. Senator Minnesota, Ancient Landmark No. 5, St. Paul MN. (talk) 06:03, 19 April 2010 (UTC)

Reach me at G<email address removed by Chzz> I can put you in touch with the secretary of our lodge, Ancient Landmark No. 5, Doug Kuchera. Br. Coleman was dubbed a Master Mason *by the sitting GM at the time) and admitted to AL#5 several years ago. I have discussed this with him if only briefly on Facebook. He is indeed a Brother, but has not attended lodge in the two years I have been at AL#5 -Br. Graham Garnos 32^ M.o.R.S. Mpls Valley, Master Mason AL#5 A.F.&A.M. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Grahamgarnso (talkcontribs) 06:31, 19 April 2010 (UTC)

See below  Chzz  ►  07:27, 19 April 2010 (UTC)
To explain further, to add someone to this list we need a reliable source that we can cite. Confirmation from a lodge Secretary is not enough. To understand the rules on this better, please see WP:Verifiability, WP:Identifying reliable sources and WP:No original research. Blueboar (talk) 13:10, 19 April 2010 (UTC)

Edit request from, 19 April 2010

{{editsemiprotected}} James J. Hill, was a Canadian-American railroad executive. Founder and CEO of the Great Northern Railway, Ancient Landmark No. 5 St. Paul, MN (talk) 06:20, 19 April 2010 (UTC)

Reach me at G<email address removed by Chzz> I can put you in touch with the secretary of our lodge, Ancient Landmark No. 5, Doug Kuchera and we can find out if this is accurate. My understanding from the older brothers, well versed in the history of our lodge, is that Hill certainly was a member of our lodge and donated the land for the original building, as well as donating the land for the Cathedral in St. Paul and the Capital building. He was certainly a mason, whether I have the lodge name and number correct is questionable. -Br. Graham Garnos 32^ M.o.R.S. Mpls Valley, Master Mason AL#5 A.F.&A.M. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Grahamgarnso (talkcontribs) 06:29, 19 April 2010 (UTC)

See below  Chzz  ►  07:27, 19 April 2010 (UTC)

Edit request from, 19 April 2010

{{editsemiprotected}} Dr. Robert Smith, cofounder of Alcoholics Anonymous, Akron, OH. Lodge unknown. Expelled 1934. Reinstated but year unknown. (talk) 06:23, 19 April 2010 (UTC)

Reach me at G<email address removed by Chzz>com —Preceding unsigned comment added by Grahamgarnso (talkcontribs) 06:26, 19 April 2010 (UTC)

Signature button.png
When you leave messages, please remember to "sign" your name, by putting ~~~~ (four tilde signs) at the end. This will add your name, and the date and time. You can also do this by clicking the 'sign' button, pictured here.
We can't perform this request without a reference to a reliable source, sorry. Also, it's a bad idea to put your email addy on Wikipedia. If you can find an appropriate ref, please reinstate the request. Best,  Chzz  ►  07:24, 19 April 2010 (UTC)

Not done

Rob't Burns

I thought Robert Burns is also considered a "Poet Laureate of Freemasonry," just as is Robert Morris. Comments? kcylsnavS{screechharrass} 00:04, 20 May 2010 (UTC)

I think you are correct... but to say it we need a source. That said... I am not sure we need to put this. this page is not designed to trumpet the Masonic titles held by those listed (that can be done at their articles if it is important to mention). All we need is the person's name, a brief identifying comment as to what makes the person notable (in Burns's case, to let our readers know that we are referring to the Scottish poet and not some other Robert Burns) and (if we know) where the person was raised. The fact that Burns was "Poet Laureate of Freemasonry" (or at least of the Grand Lodge of Scotland) is simply a bit of Masonic trivia that we don't really need.
With Morris on the other hand... his connection to Freemasonry is what makes him notable... so we mention it. Blueboar (talk) 02:26, 20 May 2010 (UTC)

Was he not in five different lodges within a year?-- (talk) 13:18, 11 December 2010 (UTC)

What do you mean by "in five different lodges". If you asking whether he attended meetings in five different lodges within a year, I would say it is highly likely... but not really worth mentioning. It is quite common for Masons to visit other lodges and attend their meetings. Burns would hardly be unique in doing so. If you are asking whether he became a member of five different lodges in one year... I doubt it. Blueboar (talk) 14:38, 11 December 2010 (UTC)

Billy Wilder

Blueboar, I removed Billy Wilder because the reference to his membership was nothing more than a list on a website with his name on it. I am not saying he isn't a Freemason, but the present entry, although from a better site - G∴L∴ Yukon & BC - isn't any better. This reference is still just - for want of a better word, "heresay," without any substance behind it. Wikipedia only asks for verifiability, but surely that has to be something more than just "it's written somewhere on the internet." For masons, we mustn't just put names on list, especially if we don't even have a lodge number. I suggest his name be removed until there is something more reliable. kcylsnavS{screechharrass} 19:47, 22 May 2010 (UTC)

The reference is not just any old list on any old website... this particular list is maintained by the Grand Lodge of BC&Y... and it is a website which is held in high regard for the quality of it's scholarship. It is considered one of the best on-line repositories of Masonic information that exists. Trevor W. McKeown the website's webmaster/curator is careful about not including anyone who's membership is in question. He isn't about to put someone on the list purely on heresay. If there was a question as to Wilder's membership in his mind, he would either leave him off the list or add him to this index, which includes (scroll to the bottom of the page) a list of people who are commonly thought to be Masons, but are not.
Yes, I agree that it would be even better to find a source that gives more specific information, such as Wilder's lodge, raising date, etc. (and if you can find one, please do add it) but I think inclusion on the the GLBC&Y website is more than enough for us to keep Wilder on our list (and if not... then we will need to review whether to keep many of the other the people on our list... as we cite various pages on the BC&Y website a lot). Blueboar (talk) 21:45, 22 May 2010 (UTC)
The issue remains in dispute. I have contacted bcy and asked them for their source material, but the fact remains that at the moment Wilder's membership is still disputed, because at least one editor (yours truly) consider it to be only a rumor. The mere fact that John Doe is reported to be a mason - with nothing more - is not sufficient. Eddie Albertson (whoever that is), Louis Armstrong, Ludwig van Beethoven, Carol O'Connor, Carl Weathers, Jimmy Lunceford, Eddy Peabody, Oscar Peterson, and Billy Wilder, have simply not been shown to be masons and byc's information is no more reliable than Wikipedia's is, with regard to men who are "just said" to be masons. Please do not remove the dispute tag until we resolve this one way or the other. kcylsnavS{screechharrass} 00:46, 23 May 2010 (UTC)
On what grounds are you adding the tag? The material and citation both pass WP:V and WP:RS... Trever McKeown is a noted Masonic Historian... the BC&Y website is well known for the quality of it's research. More importantly, is there a reliable source that contradicts what McKeown says... is there any reliable source that says Wilder wasn't a Mason? Or are you merely adding the tag based on your own personal belief that his membership is rumor? You obviously feel that your knowledge is superior to McKeown's... why? Blueboar (talk) 01:07, 23 May 2010 (UTC)
On the grounds that the are no verifable facts. Please understand, facts have to be supported, skepticism does not - there is no way to prove a negative. In other words, it is membership that must be supported, not lack of membership. I am not trying to be unreasonable or obstructionist and I don't insist on absolute "proof" - heck, a letter from his grand lodge would be nice but I doubt we'll get one. But Wikipedia does deserve something better than simple presence on a weblist. Let's give it a few days and wee what McKeown says. He may come back with something that puts my position to bet without supper. On the other hand, he may come back with something else. A few days won't hurt. kcylsnavS{screechharrass} 01:42, 23 May 2010 (UTC)
I strongly disagree... I think that being on the BC&Y list constitutes more than enough of a verifiable fact for our purposes. It is is widely considered the best Masonic website in the world. McKeown is one of the most respected Masonic historians out there. This is exactly the kind of source that Wikipedia calls for when it demands verifiability. Blueboar (talk) 03:16, 23 May 2010 (UTC)
I agree with Blueboar. The website in question is highly reliable and the list has been well-researched. It passes muster as relable and verifiable--the two main factors in adding facts to Wikipedia. Since the information passes muster on both of those counts, then it is, indeed, incumbent upon you, Svanslyck, to prove that its information is unreliable. (Taivo (talk) 04:30, 23 May 2010 (UTC))
Or at least make a convincing argument that, in this one case, the otherwise reliable source is incorrect. Saying, "I think it is merely repeating rumor" is not a convincing argument... you have to explain why you think the source is incorrect.
Seriously, look through the rest of the entries on this list. Most of them are supported by sources that do not give the level of support you are demanding for Wilder. By your standards, we should challenge the inclusion of King George V of England... the source is, after all, just a list with no supporting information. How do we know that UGLE isn't also merely reporting rumor? Or what about "Bud" Abbott... he too is included based on an on line list that does not give supporting info (Hell, that list is compiled by an individual, not even a Grand Lodge). I think you will find that most of our entries are based on lists that are no different than the one at the BC&Y website. So what makes Wilder different that you challenge him and not the others? Blueboar (talk) 13:46, 23 May 2010 (UTC)
A researcher has to make at least some judgment as to the reliability of his (or her) sources. With regard to Freemasons, there have for far too many years been statements that "this man" or "that man" is a mason, with no backup whatsoever, and those statements have made it onto the web. For example, what lodge did Mr. Wilder belong to? As mentioned above, I've asked Trevor to elaborate. In the meanwhile, I expect that someone in the past confused Billy Wilder with Willam Wyler, 1902-81, a member of Loyalty Lodge No. 529, California. Both were multiple award-winning producer-directors, and both were born in Germany and served in the U.S. Army during WWII. Another example is Eddie Albertson. Who is Eddie Albertson? Is he Eddie Albert? Eddie Albert has never been shown to be a mason. Or is he Jack Albertson, also never shown to have been a mason? This sort of thing is replete on the Internet. All I am suggesting is that the Wikipedia community err on the side of caution. As to the others, I haven't gotten there yet, but I did challenge one name on Trevor's list a few years ago. Trevor looked into it, found that his only supporting material was just someone's "say so," and moved the name to his "Famous Non-Masons" list based on lack of evidence. The problem is not that our entries come from weblists - it is that the weblists themselves consist of nothing one can put one's teeth into - I do not object to use of weblists as supporting criteria when they at least identify a lodge name and number, but with regard to Wilder we don't have even that. Again, I suggest we give Trevor a few days to respond. kcylsnavS{screechharrass} 18:11, 23 May 2010 (UTC)
So should we remove King George and Bud Abbott? Blueboar (talk) 18:51, 23 May 2010 (UTC)
On a side note... The "Eddie Albertson" question is an interesting search on Google... it does show how the BC&Y list gets copied over and over verbatim without any double checking... And as you would expect, it gets misused at some anti-Masonic rant sites... yes, those evil Freemasons are out to control our lives by infiltrating the media and entertainment industry... led, I am sure, by the nefarious Eddie Albertson! Blueboar (talk) 19:08, 23 May 2010 (UTC)
Yes, that's my concern exactly. Our lodge has had a great deal of trouble taking over the world because of the darn Internet. Abbott was apparently a member of Daylight Lodge No. 525, Michigan. MQ Magazine ( ) reports that George V was not a Freemason. kcylsnavS{screechharrass} 19:12, 23 May 2010 (UTC)
Woops... sorry... I mis-typed... I note that we don't list George V... and neither does UGLE ... I meant to ask the question about King George VI (who is listed here, cited to the UGLE webpage... which has no lodge info). Dispite my typing error, my point stands... if we are going to hold ourselves to the (overly strict) standards you desire... we need to review every entry on the list, check to see if the citation includes lodge info and, if not provided, challenge the entry. This will likely mean challenging about half of the list. Blueboar (talk) 19:26, 23 May 2010 (UTC)
We have to be very careful here about WP:OR. While the intent of double and triple-checking every reference is good, we also need to be aware that neither WP:RS nor WP:V requires that we check the accuracy of our sources, especially print sources. If a name occurs in Morris' or Hodapp's books (with or without lodge number) then we consider that name to have been found and verified because of the reliability that we associate with those authors. We don't need to be doing the original research here (and, indeed, Wikipedia's policies preclude that). If an error is identified, then fine, but suspecting error a priori is not Wikipedia's position in the world of research. (Taivo (talk) 19:44, 23 May 2010 (UTC))
Certainly "suspecting error a priori is not Wikipedia's position in the world of research" is true, but neither is failure to do reasonable fact checking. If the effort is good enough for in-print journalism, then it's good enough for Wikipedia. Please note the notice at the top of this page, which states, "This article must adhere to the policy on biographies of living persons. Contentious material about living persons that is unsourced or poorly sourced must be removed immediately, especially if potentially libellous. If such material is repeatedly inserted, or if there are other concerns about the biography of a living person, please report the issue to the biographies of living persons noticeboard. If you are connected to the subject of this article and need help with issues related to it, please see this page." See also , where Jimbo states, "There seems to be a terrible bias among some editors that some sort of random speculative 'I heard it somewhere' pseudo information is to be tagged with a "needs a cite" tag. Wrong. It should be removed, aggressively, unless it can be sourced. This is true of all information, but it is particularly true of negative information about living persons." As to George VI or George IV, no one is seriously suggesting that the United Grand Lodge of England is unqualified to identify members of its own lodges. Now I do not consider attribution of masonic membership to be in any way negative, but why are we arguing for mediocrity? kcylsnavS{screechharrass} 21:59, 23 May 2010 (UTC)
Svanslyck, the quote from Jimbo does not apply here. This isn't a case of "some sort of random speculative 'I heard it somewhere' pseudo information". Jimbo was talking about an editor adding unsourced information. But in this case we do have a source... the BC&Y website... so we are relying not on our own speculation or knowledge but something stated in a very reliable source. In fact, I could argue that you are the one trying to edit based on "speculative 'I heard it somewhere' pseudo information" when you remove or challenge the entry... as you are setting your own doubts over what is stated in a reliable source. I won't make that argument... but I could. I am more than willing to leave the tag and wait until you receive a reply from Trevor, but I do think you are being unrealistic in your expectations.
As for libel and the WP:BLP policy... that does not apply either, because Wilder is dead. Finally, I am not arguing for mediocrity (although it does, sadly, seem to be the norm for Wikipedia)... I am arguing that you are setting the bar overly high. You seem to want perfection... The GLBC&Y website may not be perfect, but it is highly reliable. Blueboar (talk) 23:20, 23 May 2010 (UTC)
I am not arguing for perfection. I am arguing for a little common sense. Any print journalist is required to check facts, not just accept whatever's written out there on the net. kcylsnavS{screechharrass} 23:43, 23 May 2010 (UTC)

While I appreciate the kind words, the list of famous freemasons at is a work in progress based on a flawed list created in the early 1990s by the over-enthusiastic author of Installation Night at the Celestial Lodge. I've spent almost twenty years double checking the list and adding sources. If there's no source cited,all bets are off and I won't be held responsible. I just haven't had time. Too bad--Wilder would have been a sweet link to Some Like It Hot Trevor W. McKeown (talk) 06:42, 24 May 2010 (UTC)

Oscar Peterson's membership is cited in Canadian Who’s Who (1983). Without other source citations a Grand Lodge website list of famous freemasons can only be considered authoritative in regards to its own members. If I said that George VI was a freemason, that would be hearsay unless I cited a source. The UGLE gets to cite their own records. Eddie Albertson was a fictional addition to track mirrored sites. I'd actually forgotten it was there. Trevor W. McKeown (talk) 07:23, 24 May 2010 (UTC)

Thank you for replying Trevor. Given what you say, I no longer have any reservations to removing Wilder from the list (unless someone can come up with more definitive information). When the author of a cited source discounts his own published information, that gives us legitimate reason to do so as well. As for the infamous Eddie... since we don't include the name (no indication of notability by Wikipedia's rules), feel free to keep it on your list if it helps you track mirrors and copyright vios. etc. And keep up the good work. Blueboar (talk) 14:00, 24 May 2010 (UTC)

John W. Harrelson

I have (at least temporarily) removed John W. Harrelson, Chancellor of NCSU, who was recently added... I think the addition is in good faith... but it is cited to "Hard copy files at NC Grand Lodge".

My question is: are these "hard copy files" available for viewing by the general public, including non-Masons, should they visit the Grand Lodge? If so, then I think we can return him to the list... but if not, then the addition is not verifiable by Wikipedia's rules. (I know most GLs do not open their rolls and records to non-Masons... but North Carolina may be an exception.) Blueboar (talk) 12:40, 26 May 2010 (UTC)

I suggest also that a general reference to "files" is insufficient. If the files are available to the public, then I thing we need a reference to the document, as opposed to the filing system, for example, Minutes of such and such lodge, on deposit with the G. L. of X..." or "Ballot record and petition of John Doe, on deposit with the G. L. of X...." Something like that. kcylsnavS{screechharrass} 12:59, 26 May 2010 (UTC)
Wikipedia's standard for reliable source is to prefer secondary sources, not primary sources such as "files". Secondary sources generally are more accessible for verifiability standards. --Taivo (talk) 13:09, 26 May 2010 (UTC)
I agree that secondary sources are best... although I think we can accept the occasional primary source for this list. The key is that the information has to be "Published" ... which on Wikipedia does not necessarily mean "printed in a book", but is more along the lines of "available in a form that anyone could verify". I also agree with Svanslyck... we do need more than "it's in the files". Blueboar (talk) 14:15, 26 May 2010 (UTC)

I made the addition. The record on file is his roll card of which I have a copy, but do not have permission to post (will ask though). As far as I know the records are open for public viewing. Would this suffice as a secondary source instead though ? He was also member of Square and Compass (the Masonic Fraternity) at NCSU. ShadowRAM (talk) 02:41, 1 June 2010 (UTC)

Given that this is about a living person... I think we need to be very cautious here. The roll card would be a primary source, and we need more. Blueboar (talk) 21:52, 1 June 2010 (UTC)
Col. Harrelson died on Mar 12, 1955. Wouldn't Square and Compass count as a secondary source since he would have to be a Mason to be a member and there are listings in the 1922-1927 Agromecks. ShadowRAM (talk) 04:59, 2 June 2010 (UTC)
A valid source is this piece from The Raleigh News & Observer of 19 November 2008, which mentions that William Alphonso Withers (a chemist who later served as vice president at N. C. State[7]), was, "like Harrelson, a mason."[8] MarmadukePercy (talk) 05:12, 2 June 2010 (UTC)
Ah... my error, I thought he was still living. While we still want solidly reliable sources, the standards are not quite as strict for non-living people. I think that the combination of the roll card and the newspaper mention may be enough. My call: we return Harrelson to the list and cite both sources. Any objections? 11:13, 2 June 2010 (UTC)
No objection here, but I would like to mention my personal desire that we move this list along to becoming authoritative. I don't mean original research, but I do think that in almost all cases we should have an identified lodge name, number, and jurisdiction as well as a direct source (the newspaper mention, alone, would not be sufficient in my opinion since its an aside rather than a direct statement). A roll card available to the public would be OK, but in cases where, like this card, availability more difficult that a public library search, I'd like to see the item posted to Wikisource. In regard to the several names I added a week or so ago, I'm working to obtain a scan of RAM Magazine and permission to post it, in support of the names I added. Just my $0.03. kcylsnavS{screechharrass} 18:17, 2 June 2010 (UTC)
Thank you for the input. I put back his entry with the references and fixed his main page to display his death date. I will try to get permission shortly to also post his roll card. ShadowRAM (talk) 04:35, 3 June 2010 (UTC)
And thank you, ShadowRAM, for being understanding... Our goal is to be inclusive but, at the same, time ensure that those listed are backed by the best possible sources. Blueboar (talk) 13:42, 3 June 2010 (UTC)


I've gone through the list and tried to alphabetize; in doing so however I've found that for sections G and below, the names at the top of each section may be out of order. Don't shoot me yet. I will get back to them and fix them. Blame my sorting algorithm (to really screw things up, one needs a computer...). kcylsnavS{screechharrass} 02:43, 29 May 2010 (UTC)

Alphabetizing is now  Done for all sections and my OCD will now let me sleep.

  • Sorting was based on surname. Where there was a two-part surname, for example preceded by "de," "delos," "de los," "mac," or "van," the sort was done on the the significant part of the name following the space. Where there was no space, for example with "d'Angelo," the sort was done on the first letter following the space, in this example "d." Where the name had two significant parts, sorting was done according to what I understood the person would have used. Thus, Latin American names were sorted based on the father's surname, which comes first, rather than the mother's. Sorting was not done based on titles or positions, such as "Sir" or "King," since they are not part of the name. Some names of members royal families still need to be looked at, such as Patrick's, to treat them consistently, the question being what, exactly, the name for sorting purposes is. I will see if I can get learned up and suggest something. kcylsnavS{screechharrass} 15:43, 29 May 2010 (UTC)
  • Suggestion for alphabetizing. OK, I studied up as promised and my suggestion for sorting for names Royal is at User:Svanslyck/Surnames. Since I didn't find anything when I searched through WP:MOS, I've also suggested it to them as a general en.wikipedia policy. kcylsnavS{screechharrass} 23:52, 7 June 2010 (UTC)
  • The discussion on the policy talk page appears to be never-ending, with no one having the ability to simply decide. Given that state of affairs over something already addressed by Chicago and other well-regarded and accepted style guides, and the lack of guidance in on what to actually do, I offer my suggestion for discussion here. Um, and, er, if no one objects I'm going to finish the list sort according to that guide (which only has to due with names of members of the British peerage and such). kcylsnavS{screechharrass} 14:51, 8 June 2010 (UTC)

Edit request from Jcdavispsmc, 7 June 2010

{{editsemiprotected}} Add the following

  • John Elway NFL Hall of Fame Quarterback for Denver Broncos (1983-1998), South Denver- Lodge No. 93, Denver, CO

Jcdavispsmc (talk) 19:35, 7 June 2010 (UTC)

If you can supply a reliable source for Mr. (Bro.?) Elway's membership, I would be happy to add him for you. Blueboar (talk) 19:42, 7 June 2010 (UTC)
Here are a few on-line sources, you can decide if any are OK with you: [9], [10], [11] --Taivo (talk) 20:21, 7 June 2010 (UTC)
The first one is a page from the (York Rite) Grand Encampment of Knights Templar website, that appears to be something they might have put in their magazine... I would consider it reliable... the others I would consider not (or at best iffy ... the second link seems to be some sort of Scottish Rite page... but who or what is the "Western Jurisdiction"? while the Dallas News is simply an unsubstantiated list). I think we can probably add Bro. Elway based on the York Rite page, even though it would be nice to have an even better source. Any objections? Blueboar (talk) 21:21, 7 June 2010 (UTC)
Agree SpigotMap 21:30, 7 June 2010 (UTC)
Agree as well. Avicennasis @ 22:32, 7 June 2010 (UTC)
I know Ivan Tribe. I would Agree if you can track down the reference to the York Rite page. I can also check with an internal source, but doing so probably won't give us the reference. kcylsnavS{screechharrass} 22:54, 7 June 2010 (UTC)

DONE. Blueboar (talk) 23:03, 7 June 2010 (UTC)