The Regius Poem is believed to the oldest surviving masonic document.
The Regius Poem is considered by Freemasonry to be one of the Old Charges. The Old Charges were meant to describe a members requirements when they joined an operative lodge. In order to join the operative lodge a new member would have to swear to the uphold and perform the things required in the charge. Often these would appear in the front of the lodge's book of minutes.
It is fortunate that the Lodge Minute Book in which Baxter's entry into Freemasonry is recorded still survives. The Minute states: " 13th January 1797 Received from Bro. Matt. Gilmour (1)21/- as the dues of Entry for Br. Alex. Baxter John Campbell Secy. JohnGardner RWM" The year date is an error which can be proved by the fact that the subsequent Minute is entered as 15 January 1798. Although the Minute recording Baxter's initiation is brief, this is not unusual. Minutes in this Minute book which commences in 1793 and concludes in 1816 recording the admission of candidates follow a similar pattern. Only when matters of greater importance are discussed then Minutes are more detailed.
Graham was initiated in Lodge "The Prince's" No 607 - 15 April 1878, Passed – May 1878, Raised - 10 June 1878. He was recorded as No 11 on the Roll of the Lodge. He served as Master between 1883-1886. The history of Lodge “The Prince’s” No 607 records William Pearce of Elmbank House, Govan and John William Burns as the Lodge’s first initiates. However this is inaccurate, since Pearce had been initiated in The Prince of Wales’ Lodge No 279(EC), a Lodge with a distinguished royal pedigree dating back to 1787.
Campbell was initiated in Lodge Mother Kilwinning No 0 on 7 March 1884 aged 34 years with his occupation being noted as Curator of Kelvingrove Museum. His brother, Thomas McKell Campbell Jnr.,aged 32 years, Metal Merchant, residing at 152 Dumbarton Road, Glasgow was initiated on the same evening. Both were recommended by Thomas M. Campbell*, presumably their father and seconded by Brother Wyllie, Secretary of the Lodge. All three degrees were conferred at the same Meeting. On 4 December 1885, along with Thomas McK. Campbell Jnr., John McNaught Campbell affiliated to Lodge Clyde No 408 and became Master of that Lodge in December 1888. Prior to becoming a member of Lodge Clyde, according to the Scottish Masonic Record, Campbell in the same year as his initiation had been appointed to the Office of Scribe E (Secretary) of St Andrew of Glasgow Royal Arch Chapter No 69 and then as Principal Z in the Chapter. (Campbell's father had been a Founder Member of the Chapter). Such was the high regard, in which Campbell was held, that only two months after affiliating to Lodge Clyde, he became Secretary of the Lodge. The Record states " he works the Mark and Royal Arch degrees with a proficiency seldom equalled, and conducts the business of lodge and chapter with equity." Campbell's membership of Masonic Orders and activities is set out below:
Captain Archibald Alexander Speirs, 4th of Elderslie , Provincial Grand Master of Glasgow
Died in his 29th Year from Typhoid contracted from the River Clyde; his son, Alexander Archibald Speirs, 5th of Elderslie was born posthumously.
He also became Provincial Grand Master and Grand Master Mason.
The Glasgow Herald, 7August 1861 Majority of Archibald Alex. Speirs Esq. Festivities at Elderslie House
" The Festivities at in celebration of the coming of age of Archibald Alexander Speirs Esq. of Elderslie, &c., commenced yesterday at Elderslie House, near Renfrew. Preparations upon an extensive scale have been in progress for some time, and the Festivities were inaugurated yesterday by the presentation of several addresses to Mr Speirs and by a dinner by that gentleman to the tenantry on his various estates of Elderslie, Houston, Fulwood, Neilston, Yoker, Arkelston, Newton and Glanderston. A large and elegant marquee and several supplementary marquees provided by Mr W Piggott of London were erected in front of Elderslie House and were connected with the mansion by a covered avenue. A substantial flooring of solid woodwork was laid for the marquees by Mr Boyd of Paisley an important auxiliary to the comfort of Mr Speirs' guests yesterday and a necessary one for the ball which is to take place in the marquee tonight. The avenues leading to the mansion house were crossed at intervals by ornamental arches of heather and pine, hung with festoons of hollyhocks and dahlias and surrounded with flags some bearing the arms of the Elderslie family with its motto, " God save me". The front portico of the house was prepared for illumination and on the roof was a platform or balcony designed for the accommodation of Mr Speirs' friends while the display of fireworks was going on. The general arrangements were under the direction of Mr Grogan of London and the whole entertainment was under his management and they were such as to devolve upon the very highest praise. he was ably assisted by Mr Myles the factor on Mr Speirs' estates..........In the morning the children of the various schools of Renfrew promenaded in front of the house and sung hymns. At three o'clock the tenantry assembled numbering about 80 at the north front of the house to present an address when Mr Speirs stepped on to the balcony accompanied by Mrs and Miss Speirs(his mother and sister), Miss Anne G Speirs(his aunt), Mr and Mrs and Miss Haggart of Bantaskine, and Col. Haggart; Captain Speirs of Culreuch, T D Speirs Esq of Woodfooot, Mr Dundas MP, &c., &c.
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