Manyoftheseloansdatedbacktotheearlyyearsof
themuseum,beforeitsowncollectioncouldsupport
exhibitionsandresearchprojects.

Thetimeseemedrighttoassesseachloanforits

relevancetothemuseum’smissionandcorepriorities.

Inmanycases,theobjectsonloanweredetermined

tobeone-of-a-kind,offeringfascinatingpossibilities
forresearch,exhibits,andpublicprogramming.

So,museumstaffbegantoasktheirownersifthey

mightconsiderturningtheseloansintogiftsforthe
permanentcollection.Oneofthefirstgenerous
lenderstoacceptthisproposalwasOccidentalLodge
inStockbridge,MA.

Backin1977,shortlyafterthemuseumopened,

OccidentalLodgeplacedamaulonloantothemu-
seum.

Themaulhasanappliedmetalbandthathelpsto

tellthestoryofitssignificance,“AncientEgyptian
MaulPresentedtoOccidentalLodgebyR.W.
BrigadierGeneralC.S.WilsonCB,CMG,DSO,
DistrictGrandMasterofEgyptandSudan.”

OccidentalLodgewasformedinStockbridge,

MA,inJune1870whentheGrandLodgeofMassa-
chusettsgrantedthepetitionof23Masonsfromthat
town.

Thesemenestablishedthepurposeofthelodge,

“topromoteanddiffusethegenuineprinciplesof
Freemasonry;fortheconvenienceofourrespective
dwelling,andothergoodreasons.”

Thelodgegrewsteadilyduringthelate1800sand

early1900s,initiatingmembers,pursuingcharitable
activitiesandmeetingregularly.

Duringtheseyears,OccidentalLodgereceiveda

numberofgiftswhichtheypreservedastreasures.

Inadditiontotheirofficerjewels,asetofreceiving

toolsandseveralceremonialgavels,thelodgereceived
themaulinJuly1928.

Thepreviousfall,atanOctober5,1927Special

Communication,thelodgewasvisitedbythepresid-
ingDistrictDeputy,alongwithBrigadierGeneral
CharlesS.Wilson,then-DistrictGrandMasterof
EgyptandSudanfortheGrandLodgeofEngland.

Unfortunately,lodgerecordsdonotrevealtheoc-

casionforWilson’svisittowesternMassachusetts,or
whatpromptedhimtomakethisgift.Insteadthegift
ofthemaulisrecordedas“atokenofhisesteem.”

WilsonwasthefifthDistrictGrandMasterafter

theDistrictGrandLodgeofEgyptandSudan
formedin1899.

Wilsonsucceededhispredecessorin1926after

thatmanwasassassinatedonaCairoStreet,serving
asDistrictGrandMasteruntilhisdeathatseain
1933.

AccordingtoWilson,thissettingmaulwasfound

inthefuneraltempleofPharoahDjoser(alsoknown
asZoser),whosereignextendedfromabout2630
B.C.to2610B.C.

ThefuneraltempleispartoftheStepPyramidat

Saqqara,Egypt.BuiltunderthedirectionofPharoah
Djoserduringhisreign,bythearchitectImhotep,the
pyramidwasthelargestbuildingofitstimestanding
204feethighwithsixsteppedlayers.

ThestructurewasintendedtoholdthePharoah’s

mummifiedbodyafterhisdeath.Themuseumis
pleasedtoaddthemaultoitscollection—itbe-
comestheoldestiteminthatcollection.

SPRINGCLEANING

AuroraLodgeApron
ReceivesConservation

LikeAnnawonLodgeNo.115,ofConnecticut,the
membersofAuroraLodgeNo.50,inRockland,ME,
becameconcernedaboutoneoftheirtreasuresand
turnedtotheNationalHeritageMuseumforhelp.

Duringthefallof2007,oneofthelodgemembers

noticedtheaproninitsframe,restingonthetopofa
metalfilingcabinetinthelodgebuilding.

Thepaperbackingwasbrittleandcrackingandthe

apronitselfwasripplinginside.Bro.JamesDayboch
didsomeresearchanddiscoveredthattheapron
datedtotheearly1800s,perhapseventotheyearof
AuroraLodge’scharter—1826.

Workingwiththelodgeandthemuseum’scurator-

ialstaff,Bro.Daybochspearheadedanagreementto
bringtheaprontoLexingtonsothatitcouldreceive
propercleaning,aswellassecurestorage,tohelp

6

May2008/

TheNorthernLight

Ancient
EgyptianMaul,
donatedtothe
NationalHeritage
Museum,by
OccidentalLodge
ofStockbridge,
MA.