25 Curious Facts About Freemasonry

Posted by , Updated on March 22, 2024

Freemasonry, a term we’ve often heard paired with narratives about secret plans towards global control under a new world order, is a subject many of us don’t know in depth. Freemasonry stands as one of the oldest and largest brotherhoods in the world. Its roots reach back to early civilization, but it was officially recognized when the inhabitants of London observed its ceremonies in 1717. Even though early Masonry maintained an air of secrecy, the first revelation of its supposedly secretive rituals occurred in 1696! Since that point, tens of thousands of books outlining this not-so-secret society have been published. Freemasonry’s primary goal is to improve men, and its bonds of friendship, empathy, and fraternity have endured even the fiercest political, military, and religious disputes throughout history. Freemasonry is neither a podium for debate nor a worship site. Contrary to widespread belief, it is not a religion and does not impart a religious philosophy. Nonetheless, many questions about this “brotherhood” linger. We hope the upcoming 25 Insights about Freemasonry will cast some light on the organization and aid our comprehension of its mission and intention.



Freemasonry exists in various forms all over the world, with a membership estimated at around five million (including approximately 480,000 in Great Britain and over two million in the United States).

FreemasonsSource: gwmemorial.org/freemasonry.php, Image: Wikimedia commons (public domain: copyright expired)

Contrary to popular belief, the Freemasons are not a secret society. A Mason can freely tell people they are a Mason. They just can’t reveal the secrets of the order.

FreemasonsSource: bilderberg.org/masons.htm

The conventional establishment of Freemasonry is usually dated to 1717, when the Grand Lodge of London emerged on June 24. The emergence of this Grand Lodge marked the beginning of Grand Lodges governing other lodges.

Grand Lodge of LondonSource: freemasons-freemasonry.com

Freemasonry employs the tools and instruments of stonemasonry to teach a system of morality, friendship, and brotherly love, hence, the standard emblem of Freemasonry is the square and compasses.

freemasonrySource: Born in Blood: The Lost Secrets of Freemasonry, Image: Wikimedia commons (public domain: 1st publication before 1923)

Masonic symbols are usually regarded as existing because of the fraternity’s secrecy. However, in reality, Freemasonry started being illustrated by symbols because at the very beginning most Freemasons could not read, so the symbols served to remind members of the fraternity’s teachings.

old-bookSource: Born in Blood: The Lost Secrets of Freemasonry, Image: pixabay (public domain)

The oldest Masonic symbol is the square and compasses. It is also the most universally recognized symbol of Freemasonry, though its exact significance varies from country to country.

square and compassesSource: Born in Blood: The Lost Secrets of Freemasonry, Image: Wikimedia commons (public domain)

A Masonic “lodge” refers to the congregation of people who meet there, it’s not just the name of a building. Each lodge gets a charter from a “Grand Lodge” but they basically run themselves. There’s no overarching ritual for running a meeting; it varies with each individual group.

Masonic LodgeSource: thoughtcatalog.com

It’s impossible to become a Freemason if you’re an atheist. The first requirement is that potential members must believe in a higher power of some kind.

Atheism symbolSource: freemasonry.org, Image: commons.wikimedia.org (public domain)

There are two known branches of Freemasonry. The Regular, guided by the United Grand Lodge of England, and the Liberal, represented by the Grand Orient of France.

branches of FreemasonrySource: Born in Blood: The Lost Secrets of Freemasonry

Masons traditionally recognize each other by various “secret” signs, including wearing a ring with a Masonic emblem, various lapel badges, and sometimes the famous Freemason handshake (when shaking hands, the thumb briefly strokes the other man’s hand in a certain way), though the last is mostly restricted to Freemasons in San Francisco and Washington, DC.

Masonic RingSource: Born in Blood: The Lost Secrets of Freemasonry

Anders Breivik, perpetrator of the 2011 mass murders in Norway, was a practicing Freemason.

Anders BreivikSource: murderpedia.org

Freemasons are commanded not to testify truthfully when another Mason is on trial. They admit that it may be perjury, but to them it is a far greater sin to not protect one of their own.

TrialSource: Born in Blood: The Lost Secrets of Freemasonry

Freemasonry has no single spokesman. It is comprised of many individuals in numerous organizations, all of which are subordinate to the Grand Lodge in their area. None of these members or organizations can speak for Freemasonry; that is the responsibility of each Grand Lodge in the area.

FreemasonrySource: freemasonry.html, Image: Wikimedia commons (public domain: author's life + 100 yrs)

In case you didn’t know, there is a direct Masonic link to the Statue of Liberty. Frederic Bartholdi, the man who designed the famous statue, was a Mason.

Statue of LibertySource: Secrets of the Statue of Liberty, Image: Wikimedia commons (public domain: 1st publication prior to 1923)

The secret handshakes and passwords now associated with Freemasonry were used by the stonemasons to identify each other, which was important for keeping secrets in the guild.

Source: Born in Blood: The Lost Secrets of Freemasonry, Image: Wikimedia commons (author's life + 100 yrs)  Source: Born in Blood: The Lost Secrets of Freemasonry, Image: Wikimedia commons (author's life + 100 yrs)

Astronaut Buzz Aldrin was a member of Clear Lake Lodge #1417 in Texas. He was also the Lunar Module Pilot on Apollo 11, the first manned lunar landing in history. When he stepped on the moon he had with him a special deputation from his Grand Master to claim the moon as being in the territorial jurisdiction of the Grand Lodge of Texas. John Glenn was also a Mason.

Buzz AldrinSource: masonicworld.com, Image: Wikimedia commons (public domain)

Catherine Babington wanted to know what Freemasonry was all about so she hid inside a pulpit at meetings in Kentucky for over a year. When discovered, she was held captive for a month.

freemason-pulpitSource: masonicworld.com

Some of the most famous Freemasons include Charles Darwin, Mark Twain, Winston Churchill, J. Edgar Hoover, Benjamin Franklin, and the first president and founding father of our country, George Washington.

George WashingtonSource: Born in Blood: The Lost Secrets of Freemasonry, Image: Wikimedia commons (author's life + 100 yrs)

Conspiracies link Freemasons to the Illuminati. However, this seems unlikely because the Illuminati are an entirely secret society, to the extent that most people do not believe they exist today, while people are entirely free to divulge they are a member of a Freemason lodge.

IlluminatiSource: thoughtcatalog.com, Image: Wikimedia commons (public domain)

Hitler believed that the Masons were a tool of the Jews and under the Nazi regime it’s estimated that between 80,000 and 200,000 Freemasons were murdered.

NazisSource: Wikipedia,

In the type of Freemasonry practiced in the United States female members are not allowed, whereas in the type practiced in Europe, women are generally allowed to be initiated.

WomanSource: freemasonry.org, Image: Wikimedia commons (public domain: published before 1923)

Sun worshiping is the core of Freemasonry and probably many other secret societies.

sunSource: secret-societies.com, Image: Wikimedia commons (public domain)

In the type of Freemasonry practiced in the United States, members are required to believe in God, though the interpretation of this is left up to the individual member.

PopeSource: freemasonry.org, Image: Wikimedia commons (public domain: published before 1923)

At the time it was built in 1892 the Masonic Temple in Chicago, Illinois, was the world’s tallest building. It was twenty-two stories high.

Masonic Temple in ChicagoSource: chicagoreader.com, Image: commons.wikimedia.org (public domain: 1st publication before 1923)

During the American civil war enemy soldiers who recognized each other as Freemasons helped each other and saved each other’s lives. Even during war these Freemasons’ loyalty to the craft did not fade.

American civil warSource: masonicfind.com, Image: Wikimedia commons (public domain: author's life + 70 yrs)