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Sale 2533 Lot 6
(AMERICAN REVOLUTION--PRELUDE.) Manuscript notes on St. Andrews Masonic Lodge of Boston, and its famous Green Dragon Tavern. 12 manuscript pages, 12 x 7 1/2 inches, on 4 unbound folding sheets; folds, minor wear and dampstaining. [Boston], 1760-1807
Estimate $1,200 - 1,800
These notes were apparently taken during an investigation of the finances of a Masonic lodge in Boston at some point not long after 1807, ensuring that it had clear title to its lodge building. However, this was not just any lodge, and not just any building. The notes were taken from the original records of St. Andrews Lodge, which had been established in 1756 and quickly became a locus of revolutionary activity. The lodge acquired its building in 1766 and used the first floor for meetings, while the basement was operated as the Green Dragon Tavern, otherwise known as the "Headquarters of the Revolution," where the Sons of Liberty held surreptitious meetings.
Whoever went through the records to untangle the lodge's finances clearly also had an interest in the lodge's place in history. Special note is made of Joseph Warren's admission as a member on 14 May 1765. Paul Revere is mentioned thrice as a member of the lodge's standing committee during the 1768 purchase discussions and in 1777. A note on a 14 June 1764 event reads "Thomas Paine had a ticket (whether he paid for it or not is not stated), but was not at the celebration. Query, is this the author of Common Sense?" Likely not; the author did not arrive in America until 1774. The last document discussed in the notes is an 1807 report on the lodge's finances, which found that the lodge had paid $1555.56 for the "Green Dragon Tavern," followed by $39.24 in repairs from 1760 to 1774.