Founders Jewel for the Doric Lodge No.3384, Province of Cheshire 190
Festival Jewel 1887 issued to the Festival Secretary of that year
Royal Arch Companions Jewel by Thomas Harper 1817
Pierced Craft Jewel by Thomas Harper 1811
Pre Union Past Masters Craft Collar Jewel 1812
It is this concept which provided the basis
for the study in 1901 of Masonic jewels and
coins by Shackles. There have been a number
of other books published for the Masonic
numismatist to use in his research, several of
which can be found in the further reference
and reading list accompanying this article.
Since the creation of these early jewels
the expansion in production has matched
the growth of Freemasonry worldwide.
Collectors now focus their activity in
specialist areas, which include Founders
jewels, Past Masters and Charity jewels,
together with those of other degrees.
Indeed, these very collectors have been
the saviours of the jewels of many non-
Masonic organisations, which have long
been lost, the Free Gardeners being one
of the most recent.
The common interest in numismatics
led to the founding of a Lodge for collectors
named after a famous Freemason – Thomas
Harper. The Lodge, No9612., meets
The common theme of Masonic
collections provides a continual source
of research papers presented in the Lodge
since its inception in 1996. Thomas Harper
was a jeweler, furniture maker and signatory
to the Articles of Union in 1813. The
jewels Harper produced are much sought
after, not least to be worn at Lodge meetings
David Heathcote is Immediate Past President of the
Jewels of the Craft Study and Collectors Circle and a
Founder and Past Master of Thomas Harper Lodge
No.9612. He has written numerous articles on
Masonic collecting. He is shortly to publish books
on the RMBI and MBF. He is also Media and
Public Relations Officer for the Province of Cheshire.
Reference and further reading
- Hammond W. (1917), Masonic Emblems and Jewels – Treasures at Freemasons’ Hall, London. George Philip & Son.
- Heathcote D.J. (1955), The Festivals 1900-1985 Stewards Jewels of the Royal Masonic Institution for Girls. Meridian Publishing, ISBN 0 9526464 0 4.
- Heathcote D.J. (1998), The Festivals 1900-1985: Stewards Jewels of the Royal Masonic Institution for Boys, Meridian Publishing, ISBN 0 9526464 1 2.
- Lane J. (1891), Centenary Warrants and Jewels, George Kenning.
- Marvin W.T.R. (1880), Medals of the Masonic Fraternity, described and Illustrated, Boston USA.
- Poole H Rev Ed. (1939), A Catalogue of Masonic Medals in the Museum of the Province of Worcestershire, Library and Museum Committee, Worcestershire, 1939.
- Shackles G.L. (1901), The Medals (Commemorative or Historical) of British Freemasonry, The Hamburg Zirkel-Correspondenz or Literary Committee of the Grand Lodge of Hamburg & the Quatuor Coronati Lodge No.2076, London.
- Tudor-Craig A. Maj Comp. (1938), Catalogue of Contents of the Museum at Freemasons’ Hall in the possession of The United Grand Lodge of England, T and A Constable Ltd.
- The Jewels of the Craft Study and Collectors Circle, The Diadem Magazine of the Jewels of the Craft – Study and Collectors’ Circle (1990-2004).
How to join Jewels of the Craft
Membership is open to Master Masons
duly registered by the United Grand
Lodge of England or other recognised
Grand Lodges. Proof of Masonic identity
and good standing must be forwarded by
a candidate’s Lodge secretary. Current
fees are £10 per year (£15 for overseas)
with a joining fee of £20. Membership
forms can be downloaded from the
Circle’s web site www.jotc.org.uk by
clicking on the link ‘how to join’, where
the address of the secretary, Max Gaskin,
may also be found.
The Circle publishes a quarterly
magazine, The Diadem, to widen
knowledge and further academic
study. To support this, the Circle has
part funded the publication of a number
of books on charity jewels. The most
recent contribution to this fund of
information is a project recording the
names and marks of jewel makers,
available free to members.
Each quarter members submit lists of
items they wish to swap or sell to fellow
members. This helps to keep Masonic
collectables within Freemasonry, and
the Circle hosts two Swap Meets in
Birmingham for members every year.
Web site created by Mark Griffin