Celebrating Scottish Rite Legacies

The legacy of Freemasonry is built on stories of generations. Brothers have carried on the core values of our Fraternity to spread our mission of building men of character for centuries.

The legacy of Scottish Rite Freemasonry creates a special bond with our Brothers, and with the long line of Scottish Rite Masons who have come before us. This Fall, we are honoring and celebrating the legacy that is the cornerstone of our fraternity. Read below to be inspired by the touching Masonic legacy of Brother Zachary Coles, 32°.

“Freemasonry is a family tradition at this point.”

The tradition of Freemasonry in my family started as far back as my great grandfather, or even his father before him, but we have no way to be sure. My great grandfather, John Barr, joined the Freemasonic lodge of Edinburgh, Scotland on the 29 of May 1919 during his years of living there immediately after his service in the Great War. He was gifted a certificate from the Grand Lodge of Scotland, written in both Latin and English.

Brother Coles' Great Grandfather's sealed and signed letter of recognition for joining the Brotherhood in Scotland
Brother Coles' Great Grandfather's sealed and signed letter of recognition for joining the Brotherhood in Scotland

After he moved from Scotland to the United States, my great grandfather had a family of his own. Soon after the passing of his father, my grandfather, John Edward Barr, joined the Freemasons of Pennsylvania, the Scottish Rite, and the Shriners. He would soon have a family of his own, a son and a daughter.

My late Uncle, Timothy Barr, became a Freemason like his father and grandfather before him and had sons who would soon follow suit, Eric and Brian Barr. His sister, my mother, married my father, Patrick L. Coles, and they raised two sons. My brother, Patrick J, Coles, and I. And so began a long legacy of Freemasonry within my family.

Brother Zachary Coles and his Grandfather, John Barr
Brother Zachary Cole and his Grandfather, John Barr

Not many years ago did my brother and two cousins join the Masonic lodge of Slatington, Pennsylvania under the guidance of my grandfather, with my brother wearing our great grandfather’s ages-old apron. And not but a year later, intrigued by the mystery and history of Freemasonry did my father join his own lodge. Then, the very next year, I myself joined the organization that I had lived around my entire life. I, too, joined the Lodge of Slatington #440 with my father, brother, and grandfather there to watch me rise in March of this past year. That same fall, I joined the Scottish Right alongside my father.

Four generations of Masonic heritage has created a proud family of Masons who learn and grow every day, and who will continue a proud heritage for many generations to come.