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Masonic Royal Arch Select Master Apron
1818
Jeremy Ladd Cross (1783-1860), designer; Amos Doolittle (1754-1832), engraver
USA: Connecticut
Paint and ink on silk
overall: 15-1/2"h x 15-1/2"w
Gift of John Boyce
2005.017.8

Masonic Royal Arch Select Master apron with rounded body and flap. Orange fringe along edges of body and flap. Flap is printed in blue with a delta with a trowel in the center. Glory rays surround the symbol. Lettering on the sides of the delta reads, "Silence & Secrecy / Fervency & Zeal / Select Master." The body shows an arrangement of symbols printed in blue with hand coloring. At center is a gold circle around a gold delta with an altar in the middle. At the sides of the delta are a book, branch and urn. On each side of the central circle is a pedestal with a female angel in a pink dress. The angel's wings meet in the center and hold a keystone. The pedestals stand on green grass with Masonic symbols between them - three squares, pickaxe and shovel, and mallet and chisel. Printed along the bottom is "Designed by Com. Jeremy L. Cross Royal Arch Apron Copy Right Secured Engraved by Com. A. Doolittle." Handwritten under the flap in ink is "Wm. J. Collins / June 11th 1866." The apron is lined with peach silk and bound along the top edge with pink silk. Mottled orange ties are stitched at the top corners (replacements).


Masonic speaker and author Jeremy Ladd Cross traveled throughout New England to lecture to Masonic lodges. He also sold books and aprons to the Masonic groups he visited. Cross designed this apron in conjunction with engraver and Mason Amos Doolittle. They undertook it as a joint venture in which they, as Cross recorded in his diary, “agreed to do and go halves in the expn & profit.“ Records suggest that Doolittle’s daughter, Sarah (1804-1863) may have had a hand in making up the aprons that her father printed. “The Badge of a Freemason: Masonic Aprons from the Collection,” March 2016-March 2017