Freemasons’ Hall in London is the headquarters of the United Grand Lodge of England, the governing body of freemasonry in England and Wales. The Library and Museum holds an extensive collection of books, archives and objects relating to all facets of freemasonry and fraternity. The collection includes approximately 150 oil paintings, most of which are portraits of freemasons. Some of these were commissioned or purchased by Grand Lodge; others have been donated or lent by individual lodges. As well as portraits, there are also a number of painted ‘tracing boards’, visual aids that are used in masonic ceremonies. Highlights of the collection include a portrait of King Edward VII (1841–1910) in masonic regalia by military painter Louis William Desanges, a set of three tracing boards painted in 1832 by freemason Josiah Bowring and a portrait attributed to Dutch artist William Sonmans (d. 1708) of an architect once thought to be Sir Christopher Wren but now believed to be his contemporary William Talman (c.1650–1719).
On now 1 September 2016 - 31 December 2020. 10:00 - 17:00
The Library and Museum of Freemasonry is part of