The result has been both a blessing and a curse. Misconceptions about Freemasonry still abound and are propagated via every possible means, a fair share of them from sources with otherwise sterling reputations. On the positive side, new Masonic periodicals dedicated to serious Masonic research have emerged and some of the more venerable publications have committed themselves to publishing more educational material. Rumblings are being heard from Masonic lodges of research that have been idle for years. There is, undeniably, both a need and a market for accurate and well documented information. In addition, many of our Masonic libraries and museums find themselves sorely in need of assistance with displaying, cataloging, archiving, and preserving their collections.
The Masonic Society and the Masonic Library and Museum Association have joined forces to establish The Quarry Project. Phase one of this endeavor will be the Conference on Masonic Research and Preservation to be held in the George Washington Masonic Memorial in Alexandria, VA on September 27–29, 2013. The conference is open to anyone interested in Masonic research and preservation, but will be specifically targeted toward two groups: (i) members of Masonic lodges of research as well as authors, writers, and researchers, both published and aspiring, and (ii) Masonic librarians and museum curators.
The conference will draw from both the Masonic and academic communities to provide detailed instruction on Masonic research and the editing of the results. In addition, the recommendations of a committee created to establish a set of voluntary standards for future Masonic research, writing, and editing will be introduced. Professional librarians, museum curators, and experts on display and preservation will provide practical instruction and advice on maintaining and improving Masonic historical repositories. Multiple concurrent presentations will be offered on all three days. A few success stories that will enthuse and inspire you will be mixed in along the way.
The story of Freemasonry is a fascinating one that deserves to be honestly communicated on the world stage in a clear, concise, and consistent manner. It is up to those who tell that story to maintain the highest possible standards so that, as we are taught, “the honor, glory, and reputation of the institution might be firmly established and the world at large convinced of its good effects.” The Quarry Project aspires to assist in establishing and maintaining those standards.
Go the http://www.thequarryproject.com/registration/ to register today. I will be speaking Saturday night. For speakers and schedule, look here.