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Friday, August 27, 2021

Templar Eye Foundation Offers Historic 19th Century 'Knight Templar Monitor' Reprint


by Christopher Hodapp

UPDATED 8/31/2021 at 11:30PM: The original version of this post incorrectly stated that this is a leather-bound edition. I have also added more ordering options at the end of the story.

In the late 1880s, Sir Knight George Cooper Connor of Tennessee made a florid, handwritten transcript of the rituals of the Masonic Knights Templar Orders of the Red Cross, Malta and the Temple for use in the Grand Commandery of Tennessee. His manuscript later became a basis for the development of the adopted Templar Orders we know today. Now researchers and students of the evolution of Masonic-related rituals have a beautiful new historical reprint to pore over, thanks to the Knights Templar Eye Foundation and Lookout Commandery No. 14 in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

This hard-bound reprint of George Cooper Connor's Templar Monitor was designed by Brother Steve Adams, who has designed and illustrated several recent books for the Scottish Rite Research Society. The Monitor includes commentary from PGC George Marshall, KGT, on the ritual of each of the Orders, and the publication reflects the tireless efforts of SK Piers Vaughan, KCT. Like some recent Scottish Rite NMJ publications of the Francken Manuscript and several early French Masonic manuscripts, this volume features Connor's beautifully handwritten text and illustrations on one page, and a modern typeset version with new, clearer graphic illustrations and diagrams on the facing page. 


Unlike the relatively simple choreography of degree floor work in a Craft Lodge, the Templar Orders require more cast members and much more complexity of movement with the candidate throughout the asylum. Consequently, Cooper's original manuscript included many hand-drawn watercolor images relating to staging each of the Orders, along with illustrating the design of the jewels of the Orders.


Connor served as Right Eminent Grand Commander and Most Worshipful Grand Master of Masons in Tennessee. He later served as Grand Recorder of the Grand Commandery of Tennessee as well as serving on several committees of the Grand Encampment of Knights Templar US. You will find more information about him in the preface to the book, along with items regarding his Templar Funeral Service and the Templars and dignitaries from around the nation who attended his funeral.

There is a limited supply of the Templar Monitor, and it is being offered as a fundraising item for the Knight Templar Eye Foundation. The price is $150 and 100% of the proceeds go directly to the KTEF. Please note that there are no online sales offered at this time. To purchase it, you must CLICK HERE, print, and mail the order form along with a check or money order, or fax the form with your credit card information. I'm only reporting it.

I'm also informed that it can be ordered by phone from the Foundation office at 214-888-0220.

(Images are shamelessly snagged from Steve Adams' Facebook page.)

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