By Bro. David Bella, Senior Warden
Two hundred and forty years ago, six Alexandrians – Robert Adam, Michael Ryan, William Hunter Sr., John Allison, Peter Dow, and Dr. Elisha Cullen Dick – submitted a petition to the Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania requesting a warrant to operate a Masonic Lodge in Alexandria. The combined imaginative talent of those six men could never foretell what lay in store for their town’s first lodge.
The lodge they founded has hosted Presidents, dignitaries, and Grand Masters from countless jurisdictions. It has laid nationally significant cornerstones such as the United States Capitol Building, the Smithsonian Institution, and Library of Congress to name a few. It has led important funeral services. It has practiced incalculable charity in the community which has positively impacted generations of Alexandrians. It has been a leader in the international masonic community. And perhaps, most importantly, it has created life-long friendships among its members. There is no denying the lodge they created has blossomed into a truly unique and special institution. Looking around the lodge and at our historical records, I am always struck by the astonishing quality of our members. I believe that the “specialness” of the lodge is in direct parallel to the greatness of our members. Over one hundred years ago, one of the most exceptional generations of our membership banded together to set in motion the construction of the most architecturally impressive masonic structure ever conceived: an august monument to our lodge’s most august member.
In the last few years, I have seen how the current membership has morphed into its own special generation. We have wonderful members who are engaged, energized and industrious. It is a great time to be an Alexandria-Washington mason. If you do not consider yourself part of this new era, I implore you to get involved because we have a generation defining moment ahead of us in February 2023: the one hundredth anniversary of the George Washington Masonic National Memorial cornerstone laying. With the blessing of the Worshipful Master, we have assembled a small committee that has been working to outline how Alexandria-Washington Lodge No. 22 will contribute to this historic event. Our lodge is working with the Memorial to determine if we can host/co-host the following events:
This will be a historic moment, and the next six months will be critical to prepare ourselves for these memorable events. We will need help in many are as including marketing, prepping our archives, stocking the gift shop, and serving as boots on the ground for the Grand Lodge of Virginia and Memorial Association. Please reach out to me and see how you can contribute.
This is a call to action. Your lodge needs you. Come be a part of the next
great AW22 generation and let us, yet again, leave