Liberty Chronicles, Ep. 38; Everything is Freemasons!

Liberty Chronicles, Ep. 38; Everything is Freemasons!

Anthony Comegna: William Morgan was born in
Virginia round about the same time the Continental Congress was debating independence, 1775 or
1776. He began life as a builder, a stonemason,
and dabbled in commerce. In 1821, he moved his family to Canada, but
when a fire destroyed his brewery, he had to return to masonry. [00:00:30] Morgan went back to America, hopping
through a series of upstate New York towns. Gradually, a rumor sprung up to follow him. Morgan was about to publish the Freemasons’
darkest and most tightly controlled secrets, the ancient knowledge and powers conferred
through initiation rituals and coded into their workmanship. Morgan planned to expose it all to the general
public. In August 1826, a Canandaigua, New York, paper
advertised Morgan’s plans, and [00:01:00] the Masons’ desire to silence him. Acting and the name of trumped up debt and
theft charges, a group of Rochester Masons invaded Morgan’s home, seized him, and took
him for holding at the sheriff’s office. The Masons told Mrs. Morgan they would hold
her husband until she turned over his papers. On September 12th, though, an armed Masonic
mob broke in, stuffed him into a carriage, and dashed off to Fort Niagara. Morgan supposedly got off a single shout of
“Murder!” but he was [00:01:30] never seen in public again. A year later, a decomposing body wearing his
clothing beached off Lake Ontario. It appeared obvious to many that Morgan had
been ritually murdered according to the ancient rites and usages of the fraternal order of
Freemasons. Welcome to Liberty Chronicles, a project of I’m Anthony Comegna. [00:02:00] Some Masons claimed they paid Morgan
$500 to leave the country. Others denied the order had anything to do
with it or that the abduction simply never happened, despite several eyewitnesses’ testimony. Most Masons wondered why anyone should care
what happened to a renegade brother like Morgan. He knew what he was signing up for. He knew that every Mason took an oath of secrecy,
and if he broke it, he would be subject to execution by drowning and burial underwater. [00:02:30] Their fraternity was no joke, and
Morgan had broken his vows. The network of lodges in upstate New York
was so thick and powerful that his murder went unsolved and few officials seemed concerned
about his fate. In response, wave after wave of anti-Masonry
broke upon the countryside. The first shouts of conspiracy and illuminati
came from the Hill Districts where residents already hated urban influences on their state. Anti-Masonry poured from the hills to the
valleys, [00:03:00] spreading from town to town, matching the religious fervor that left
western New York burned over in the same decade. Everywhere, up sprung anti-Masonic societies,
social networks, newspapers, and even the country’s first proper modern political party. While Van Buren’s buck-tails were chartering
Jacksonian politics, the anti-Masons were pioneering a different sort of populism. Rather than offering more white men the opportunity
to join the ruling class, the anti-Masons wanted to expose those who [00:03:30] ruled
and the codes they actually lived by, and the job was no easy task. Nine Masons signed the Declaration of Independence. Thirteen helped draft and ratify the Constitution. George Washington and James Monroe were Masons,
and, for that matter, so was Andrew Jackson. So was Henry Clay. Even the South American Washington, Simon
Bolivar, was a Mason. All four of Napoleon’s brothers joined Edmund
Burke, Robert Burns, Lord Byron, Voltaire, Benjamin Franklin, and innumerable other [00:04:00]
important artists, philosophers, and scientists in the fraternity. Van Buren’s New York nemesis, Governor DeWitt
Clinton, was a Mason, as was the King of England, George the IV, and his predecessor, William
the IV. It was rumored that James Madison was briefly
a Mason, but James K. Polk certainly was. Of course, international financier, Nathan
Mayer Rothschild, was a Mason, but so was Colonel Travis, whose fighting at the Alamo
was almost a decade away when Morgan disappeared. [00:04:30] For all those alarmed by the Masons’
ability to murder with impunity, this cast of famous and important members seemed almost
unstoppable. Even Paul Revere was a Mason, but now it was
time for those who saw the danger to raise the alarm. As anti-Masonry flooded New York, it spread
to New England where it touched virtually every town where anyone harbored resentment,
resentment against the unnumbered and unseen forces with ever-growing control [00:05:00]
of the world’s historical direction, where deeply evangelical religion, country democracy,
and popular egalitarianism prevailed. Anti-Masonry gained a strong foothold. The movement was strongest in Vermont, Pennsylvania,
New York, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island. Thanks largely to their bottom up intellectual
and social activism, thousands of lodges closed from neglect by disaffected members, like
the seceding Masons who met in convention at Le Roy, New York. [00:05:30] On July 4th, 1828, the convention
published its members’ Declaration of Independence from the Masonic Order. Speaker 2: Light on Masonry, edited by Elder
David Bernard, 1829. Declaration of the Seceding Masons Convention. When men attempt to dissolve a system, which
has influenced and governed a part of community and by its intentions to antiquity, usefulness
and virtue, would demand the respect of all, it is proper [00:06:00] to submit to the consideration
of a candid and impartial world, the causes which impel them to such a course. We, seceders from the Masonic institution,
availing ourselves of our natural and unalienable rights and the privileges guaranteed to us
by our Constitution, freely to discuss the principles of our government and laws, and
to expose whatever may endanger the one or impede the due administration of the other,
do offer the following reasons for endeavoring to abolish the Order of Freemasonry and destroy
its influence in our [00:06:30] government. In all arbitrary governments, free inquiry
has been restricted as fatal to the principles upon which they were based. In all ages of the world, tyrants have found
it necessary to shackle the minds of their subjects, to enable them to control their
actions, for experience ever taught that the free mind ever exerts a moral power that resists
all attempts to enslave it. However, forms of government heretofore have
buried the right to act and speak without a controlling power has never been permitted. Our ancestors, who imbibed [00:07:00] principles
of civil and religious liberty, fled to America to escape persecution, and when Britain attempted
to encroach upon the free exercise of those principles, our fathers hesitated not to dissolve
their odes of allegiance to the mother country and declare themselves free and independent
and exulting millions of freeman, yet bless their memories for the deed. A new theory of government was reduced to
practice in the formation of the American Republic. It involved in its structure principles of
equal rights and equal [00:07:30] privileges and was based on the eternal foundation of
public good. It protects the weak, restrains the powerful,
and extends its honors and emoluments to the meritorious of every condition. It should have been the pride of every citizen
to preserve this noble structure in all its beautiful symmetry and proportions, but the
principle of self aggrandizement, the desire to control the destinies of others, and luxuriate
in their spoils, unhappily still inhabits the human breast. Many attempts have already been made to impair
[00:08:00] the freedom of our institutions and subvert our government, but they have
been met by the irresistible power of public opinion and indignation, and crushed. In the meantime, the Masonic society has been
silently growing among us, whose principles and operations are calculated to subvert and
destroy the great and important principles of the commonwealth. Before and during the revolutionary struggle,
Masonry was but little known and practiced in this country. It was lost amid the changes and confusion
of the conflicting nations and was reserved for [00:08:30] a time of profound peace, to
wind and insinuate itself into every department of government, and influence the result of
almost every proceeding. Like many other attempts to overturn government
and destroy the liberties of the people, it has chosen a time when the suspicions of men
were asleep and with a noiseless tread, in the darkness and silence of the night, has
increased its strength and extended its power. Not yet content with its original powers and
influence, it has of late received the aid of foreign and more arbitrary [00:09:00] systems. With this accumulation of strength, it arrived
at that formidable crisis when it bid open defiance to the laws of our country in the
abduction and murder of an unoffending citizen of the republic. So wicked was this transaction, so extensive
its preparation, and so openly justified, that it aroused the energies of an insulted
people, whose exertions have opened the hidden recesses of this abode of darkness and mystery,
and mankind may now view its power, its wickedness, and [00:09:30] folly. Anthony Comegna: Mimicking Jefferson’s famous
train of abuses against the King in Parliament, the seceding Masons listed their own grievances
against secret societies, the odes and obligations that bound them, and the anti-democratic nature
of these beasts. Speaker 2: But it is opposed to the genius
and design of this government, the spirit and precepts of our holy religion and the
welfare of society generally, will appear from the following considerations:
It exercises jurisdiction [00:10:00] over the persons and lives of citizens of the republic. It arrogates to itself the right of punishing
its members for offenses unknown to the laws of this or any other nation. It requires the concealment of crime, and
protects the guilty from punishment. It encourages the commission of crime, by
affording to the guilty facilities of escape. It affords opportunities for the corrupt and
designing to form plans against the government and the lives and characters of individuals. It assumes titles and dignities [00:10:30]
incompatible with a republican form of government, and enjoins an obedience to them derogatory
to republican principles. It destroys all principles of equality, by
bestowing favors on its own members to the exclusion of others equally meritorious and
deserving. It create odious aristocracies by its obligations
to support the interests of its members, in preference to others of equal qualifications. It blasphemes the name, and attempts a personification
of the Great Jehovah. [00:11:00] It prostitutes the Sacred Scriptures
to unholy purposes, to subserve its own secular and trifling concerns. It weakens the sanctions of morality and religion,
by the multiplication of profane oaths, and an immoral familiarity with religious forms
and ceremonies. It discovers in its ceremonies an unholy commingling
of divine truth with impious human inventions. It destroys a veneration for religion and
religious ordinances, by the profane use of religious [00:11:30] forms. It substitutes the self-righteousness and
ceremonies of Masonry for the vital religion and ordinances of the Gospel. It promotes habits of idleness and intemperance,
by its members neglecting their business to attend its meetings and drink its libations. It accumulates funds at the expense of indigent
persons, and to the distress of their families, too often to be dissipated in rioting and
pleasure and its senseless ceremonies and exhibitions. It contracts the sympathies [00:12:00] of
the human heart for all the unfortunate, by confining its charities to its own members
and promotes the interests of a few at the expense of the many. An institution, thus fraught with so many
and great evils, is dangerous to our government and the safety of our citizens, and is unfit
to exist among a free people. We, therefore, believing it a duty we owe
to God, our country and to posterity, resolve to expose its mystery, wickedness, and tendency,
to public view, [00:12:30] and we exhort all citizens who have a love of country, and a
veneration for its laws, a spirit of our holy religion, and a regard for the welfare of
our mankind, to aid us in the cause which we have espoused, and appealing to almighty
God for the rectitude of our motives, we solemnly absolve ourselves from all allegiance to the
Masonic institution, and declare ourselves free and independent, and in support of these
resolutions, our government and laws, and the safety of individuals [00:13:00] against
the usurpations of all secret societies and open force, and against the vengeance of the
Masonic institution, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we
mutually pledge to each other, our lives, our fortunes, and our sacred honor. July 4, 1828
Anthony Comegna: But in all their democratic fervor against the aristocratic wire-pulling
conspirators running their world, the anti-Masons could see no further than outing [00:13:30]
Masons in the press and electing a president to root them out of government. Then, everything would be fine. In the first national party convention ever
held in America, the anti-Masons nominated William Wirt for president. Wirt was a Mason from Maryland. He’d been Attorney General for Monroe and
Adams and a strong opponent of Andrew Jackson. Wirt joined the new party at the last possible
moment, along with other anti-Jacksonians, like William Seward and Thurlow Weed, both
of whom became key members [00:14:00] of the later Whig party. These men were, first and foremost, political
opportunists, little different from their pro-Mason colleagues in the major parties. Remember, by 1832, there still was no real
Whig party, and the Wirts and Weeds of the world would do anything to become the leaders
of all anti-Jackson men. When he was nominated in 1831, Wirt literally
shook and trembled with excitement. He, too, was now one of the era’s new men
[00:14:30] of politics. Anti-Masonry destroyed the vast majority of
Masonic power, but once the movement became a political party, it was just another mechanism
for politicians to jockey past one another. In 1836, the anti-Masonic party nominated
a slate composed entirely of Whigs. While anti-Masonry burned its way through
upstate New York, city dwellers down south began organizing to voice their own special
set of concerns. [00:15:00] Historian Edward Pessen wrote of
the workingman’s movement, “Bursting forth like a meteor only to fall to Earth in the
space of a few years.” Philadelphia Mechanics and Artisans founded
the first workingman’s party in 1828, and similar organizations quickly appeared everywhere. Most of the groups expressed the same fundamental
idea. America did not escape the feudalism of Europe. We have our own divisions of classes, the
wealthy who rule and the poor who labor. [00:15:30] Those first Philadelphians were
members of the Mechanics Union of Trade Associations. Workingman’s party meetings nationwide often
looked and sounded more like union meetings than political events. They included utopian socialists, anti-monopoly
democrats, and reformist anti-Jacksonians who might, otherwise, have been Whigs. Ninety percent of candidates nominated in
Philadelphia were wealthy or well-connected, but in New York, most of the party’s voters
came from poor neighborhoods. There [00:16:00] were a few humble mechanics
who rose to prominence in the party for their ideas and passion. There were also rich and influential figures
who joined average people in their struggles for a shorter workday or the right to organize
themselves. Each new city and each new local party brought
a different set of issues to the political battleground, but at the center of the workingman’s
grievances, there stood the monopoly banks, secretly sponging the life force from working
people, like mushrooms on [00:16:30] a log. The anti-Masons had their pet conspiracy theory,
which, by the way, was at least partially real, and the workingmen had their own, also
partially real. Jackson vetoed the second bank of the United
States, but now the state banks, many run by democrats, were more powerful and harmful
than ever. Jackson’s bank war was still too little. Smash the first great monster and a dozen
hydra-heads sprouted up to replace it. [00:17:00] In New York City, the interests
of state bankers were represented by both Whigs and the conservative democrats who ran
Tammany Hall. There was little hope of pulling the whole
Whig party toward workingman’s principles, but the Jackson movement was ripe for their
class-oriented message. After a brief period of success in the 1829
elections, the workingman fractured and became absorbed into the democratic party during
the bank war. The same story played out in different ways
[00:17:30] in most cities with the workingman’s presence. Within five years, most workingmen became
democrats. Their old grievances gained new political
purchase in a major party, but at the cost of independence from the Tammany machine. The anti-Masons and the workingmen created
flash in the pan political parties, but their intellectual, social, economic, and cultural
contributions to American life were profound and are with us still. With different, though often [00:18:00] overlapping,
conspiracy theories of history and politics, both movements cut to the root of Jacksonian
mythology. If this was the great democratic age, that
magical time when common people had a real shot at success and achievement, then why
did so few people control so much about American life. If elites wielded political power, thanks
to democratic elections, but decisions were actually made in secret, [00:18:30] according
to the politicians, individual’s self interests, then America really was a class-based society. There were the rulers and the rest of us,
the privileged and the people. If the purpose of the two parties was maintaining
and riding that divide into office, then rank and file anti-Masons and workingmen wanted
to abolish social distinctions as much as possible. From these two elemental sources arose [00:19:00]
the first identifiably libertarian political movement in American history, the Locofoco
or equal rights party. Liberty Chronicles is a project of It is produced by Tess Terrible. If you’ve enjoyed this episode of Liberty
Chronicles, please rate, review, and subscribe to us on iTunes. For more information on Liberty Chronicles,

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One thought on “Liberty Chronicles, Ep. 38; Everything is Freemasons!

  1. 🤔
    " No Master's , No Slaves "

    America Was Founded on the Principles Contained in the Rule of Law …

    Read the Bill of Rights …
    Absorb it's meaning ,
    Every last one of us retains the Natural Right to withdraw Consent , at any time for any reason .
    To Turn that into a class system is to lose faith in it's Principle .

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