African american history prince hall

Public Domain Prince Hall was an important social leader in Boston following the Revolutionary War and the founder of black freemasonry. His birth and childhood are unclear. There were several Prince Halls in Boston at this time. He is believed to have been the slave of a Boston leather worker who was granted freedom in after twenty-one years of service.

African american history prince hall

The charter for the organization was issued by the Grand Lodge of England after the American Revolution — The group was a vital part of a movement African american history prince hall promote political and economic improvements for free blacks in America.

Its organization was a model for all future black social institutions that were established to provide economic and educational assistance to their members. He used his position as grand master of the lodge to speak out for abolition prohibition of slavery and basic civil rights such as freedom of speech and religious freedom for African Americans.

He campaigned for racial equality in education and promoted the colonization of Africa by free blacks. The name was changed to Prince Hall Grand Lodge in to honor their founding father and first grand master.

By the twenty-first century, thousands of lodges and dozens of grand lodges could trace their existence back to the Prince Hall Grand Lodge. A free man Little is known about the early years of Prince Hall of Boston.

His death certificate states his age as seventy-two years, and from that it is assumed his birth year was The first documented information that can be verified states that Prince Hall was a slave of William Hall during the late s.

William Hall was a leather craftsman in Boston, and it is known that Prince Hall worked in that trade as well. The following year, he married Sarah Ritchie, also a slave.

All Men Free and Brethren, Essays on the History of African American Freemasonry

On April 9,Hall received his freedom after serving over twenty years. His certificate of freedom stated that he was "no longer Reckoned a slave, but [had] been always accounted as a free man.

They had one son, Prince Africanus, who was baptized in Boston on November 14, Prince Hall had been active in denouncing slavery for many years. Shortly after gaining his own freedom, he began sending petitions of protest to the Massachusetts legislature.

African american history prince hall

InHall and four other black men requested that a law be passed stating that for one day a week, blacks could work for themselves in order to buy their own freedom.

A petition signed in by Hall and seven other African Americans asked the General Court to abolish slavery because it was not consistent with the Patriot cause. Patriots were American colonists who supported the rebel cause to gain independence from British rule.

The matter was referred to the Congress of the Confederation, which took no action. Slavery was not abolished in Massachusetts untilafter the American Revolution had ended.

Bound for Greatness

Hall joins the Masons Inan army lodge of Freemasons a fraternal organization of community leaders attached to a British regiment in Boston invited Hall and fourteen other free blacks to become members. The men were initiated officially brought into the group on March 6, just weeks before open conflict began in the American Revolution.

American colonists viewed this invitation with suspicion; they believed that the British were planning to arm the blacks and have them fight in exchange for liberation after the war. Hall saw membership in the Masons as an opportunity for blacks to seek social and economic advancement.


With the outbreak of war, the British regiment, along with its lodge, left Boston. Hall and his associates had no charter, but they received a permit that allowed them to continue meeting.

The Founding of the First African Masonic Lodge

African Lodge 1 was officially organized on July 3,with Hall as its leader. However, they could not promote members to new positions within the organization, initiate new members, or participate in other ceremonial activities.

They could bury their dead in the elaborate ceremonial manner of the Masons. There are at least six black men with the name of Prince Hall listed in Massachusetts military records from the American Revolution period.

Whether Prince Hall the Mason fought as a soldier is uncertain, but his service as a craftsman is documented.

Throughout the s, Hall operated a leather workshop called the Golden Fleece while he carried out his duties with the Masons. Meanwhile, he became a spokesman for all black Bostonians because of his political activity.

Farmers were rebelling against the high taxes being imposed by the state government.Between the 16th and 17th century, the fraternal tradition of Freemasonry in North America was largely a white organization.

Hine, Hine & Harrold, Prentice Hall African American History (NASTA) | Pearson

Today, thanks to an African-American abolitionist, Prince Hall, many. Prince Hall Freemasonry is a branch of North American Freemasonry founded by Prince Hall on September 29, and composed predominantly of African Americans. There are two main branches of Prince Hall Freemasonry: the independent State Prince Hall Grand Lodges, most of which are recognized by Regular Masonic jurisdictions, and those under the jurisdiction of the National Grand Lodge.

"All Men Free and Brethren is a splendid collection of essays on the history of African American Freemasonry in the period from its founding during the American Revolution into the twentieth century. The essays review the origins of Prince Hall Freemasonry, explicate its Craft, and follow its development over time and its geographic expansion.

African American Freemasonry, the Most Worshipful Prince Hall Grand Lodge of Massachusetts, and a worldwide affiliation of Lodges and Grand Lodges, sometimes called Prince Hall Masonry. Prince Hall was an important social leader in Boston following the Revolutionary War and the founder of black freemasonry.

His birth and childhood are unclear. . (Source: “The Most Worshipful Prince Hall Grand Lodge, Free and Accepted Masons of Pennsylvania, Organized ″ Author: MW Prince Hall Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania page 93 Chapter 4 entitled ” The National Grand Lodge”) “On December 28, the First African Grand Lodge of North America at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania was established.

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