ISSUE 12, January 2005

Editorial
Kitchener of Khartoum: Mason extraordinary
Travel: Where east meets west
Veteran Honoured: Old soldier remembered
Royal Masonic Family: The Six Masonic Sons of George III, Part 1
Supreme Grand Chapter: Speech of the Pro First Grand Principal and, Report of the Committee of General Purposes
  Quarterly Communication: Address of the Pro Grand Master and, Report of the Board of General Purposes
Metropolitan Grand Lodge of London: London's first consecration
Soccer: Man in the Middle
Wales: Joseph Parry - flawed genius?
Library & Museum: Donations gather pace
Education: Dates for your diary and, Planning a 'white table' and, Looking to the future and, Time marches on
Grand Charity: General meeting and non-Masonic grant list
Masonic Charities: Reports from the four main charities
Letters, Book reviews, Gardening

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Above
A medal featuring Kitchener as a Field Marshal
© Library and Museum of Freemasonry
Below
A chalk and wash cartoon of Kitchener by George Roland Halkett
© National Portrait Gallery, London
    His initiation coincided with the increasing unrest in the Sudan and in 1895 the British government authorised Kitchener to launch a campaign to reconquer the territory.
     It is quite extraordinary that during this period of tension and military activity Kitchener found time to develop his Masonic career.
     In 1885 he joined the most senior Lodge in Egypt, Bulwer Lodge No. 1068. There are a number of questions raised about his membership, in 1886, regarding the first English Lodge with which he is associated. His name, as mentioned above, appears as a petitioner for the Drury Lane Lodge, consecrated on 25 January 1886. There is no evidence, however, of his presence in England at this time.
     His name is clearly not in his own handwriting and the letters N/R (not registered) appear after the entry. The column headed `Initiated in Lodge No.' has the entry 1355, the number of the Star of the East Lodge, also not in his writing. This error may have been the source for the confusion in the Grand Officers' listing.
     Kitchener became a joining member of the Star of the East Chapter in 1892 (which, founded in 1891, was only erased in 1966). Finally, at a meeting of the Lodge in 1898, the Master, Gerald Maxwell, welcomes Lord Kitchener as `The Victor of Omdurman'. Kitchener replies: `It gives me the greatest pleasure to meet the Brethren of the Lodge, which is the first one I have joined in England'.
     All this evidence, in addition to the political unrest in Egypt at the time, points to his participation at the consecration of the Drury Lane Lodge in absentia. The Lodge also boasted the initiation of Capt. Robert Falcon Scott (of the Antarctic).
     On 2 September 1898, General Kitchener led the British and Egyptian troops to victory over Sudanese tribesmen in the decisive battle of Omdurman, reoccupying Khartoum and establishing British control over the Sudan. It is here that he acquired the title of `Kitchener of Khartoum'.
     Meanwhile, Kitchener continued with his vigorous Masonic activities. In 1890 he joined the Greek-speaking Hellas Lodge No. 1105, later named Grecia Lodge, and was instrumental in its revival when it began to work in English. He was Master in 1892.
     It was also at this time that his interest in the Orders beyond the Craft began. His standing as a national hero, and his enthusiasm for the Craft, ensured his rapid rise through the Masonic ranks in all the Orders. In 1895 he was appointed Past District Senior Grand Warden for Egypt and the Sudan, and in this capacity he was instrumental in the Foundation of the Fatieh Lodge under the National Grand Lodge of Egypt and was made Honorary Master.


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