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a: 1864-5; b-j: ca. 1788
a: Bigelow, Kennard & Co., Inc.; b-j: Maker not marked
a: USA: Massachusetts, Boston; b-j: USA: Massachusetts, Boston (likely)
a: leather, silk, metal; b-j: silver
a (closed): 9"h x 10-3/4"w x 1-7/8"d
Loaned by the Grand Lodge of Masons in Massachusetts
a: Rectangular brown leather-covered box with hinged lid. The inside of the lid is lined with blue silk and has a stamped gold mark in the center that reads, "Bigelow, Kennard & Co. / Boston." A silver plaque is attached to the center of the outside of the lid. It is engraved and reads, "Jewels of / Massachusetts Lodge, 1788 / Recovered from the ruins of the Temple / April 6, 1864." The bottom of the box has an inset blue velvet liner with slots and holders for a set of jewels. b: Round metal cannister open at the bottom. The top is engraved and reads, "ML." Engraved along the side is a symbol of a level and the lettering, "Sept. 1st A.D. 5788 / Massachusetts Lodge No. 2." c: Round metal canister open at the bottom. The top is engraved, "ML." The side is engraved, "Sept. 1st A.D. 5788 / The Gift of MM Hayes Eld G.M. to Massachus. Lodge / No. 2." d: Chaplain's jewel with an open book in the center of a square and compass. The square and compass are inside a circle with a loop at top center. The square is engraved, "Mass. Lodge." e: Secretary's jewel with crossed quills and a bow at center. There is a round loop at top center. The back of one quill is engraved "Mass. Lodge." f: Broken circle with open center. There is a loop at top center. g: Chaplain's jewel melted together with a Treasurer's jewel. The crossed keys are not complete and are melted to the left side of the chaplain's jewel. The chaplain's jewel has an open book in the center of a square and compasses. The square and compasses are inside a circle with a loop at top center. The square is engraved "Mass. Lodge." h: Tyler's jewel shaped like a sword. Part of the handle is melted and curled. The blade is engraved "Mass. Lodge." i: Part of the Senior Warden's jewel. The left side of the bottom of a level. This piece is engraved and reads, "Massach." The end is melted and curled. j: Junior Warden's jewel in the shape of a plumb with a loop at top. Engraved "Mass. Lodge."
The officers of a Masonic lodge wear different badges that indicate their roles. These jewels take the shape of a symbol important to the organization, such as the square, the emblem of the lodge master and a symbol of virtue in Freemasonry. Some are formed from emblems that reflect the work of a particular office. A lodge secretary, for example, wears a badge in the shape of crossed pens. These jewels were used at The Massachusetts Lodge in Boston before it was damaged in a fire in 1864. For further information, see Newell, Aimee, et.al., "Curiosities of the Craft: Treasures from the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts Collection", 2013, p. 254-255.