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Masonic Tyler [Tiler]
R. I. Smith
USA: Minnesota, Austin
Photograph on paper mounted on card
card: 3-3/4"h x 2-1/2"w
Special Acquisitions Fund

Carte-de-visite; Standing man holding a sword straight up in the air; subject wears sash (tinted blue) and Masonic apron with all-seeing eye and crossed swords (possibly signifying that he is a tyler). Wearing checked pants; three books stacked on table next to him. Back reads: "R.I. SMITH, / Photographic/ Art Gallery, / AUSTIN, MINN. / Negatives Preserved."

Wearing an apron with an emblem of two crossed swords on it and carrying a sword, this Minnesota Freemason likely served as the Tyler (or Tiler) of his lodge. The Tyler’s responsibilities included guarding the door of the lodge room, checking the Masonic credentials of latecomers, and helping prepare candidates for the degrees.

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