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John Davidson, Grand Master, 1815-16

The subject of this sketch was a son of Gen. John Davidson, of Annapolis, Md., who was one of the original proprietors of the land within the lines of the original District of Columbia. He was born and resided in Richmond, Virginia, until early adult life, and for many years thereafter was a resident of the First Ward in this city and conducted what was known as Davidson's wharf, located near the mouth of Rock Creek.

He was a prominent and active citizen and identified with all the progressive movements of the period and, in common with the leading citizens of that early day, was a member of the Union Fire Company, which organization held many of its meetings at his house.

The lapse of time, together with the meager records available, preclude the possibility of giving a pen picture of the personality and characteristics of the man, but that he filled a large place in the early history of Washington is beyond question, while as one of the pioneer Masons of this section, his service was of the greatest value, especially during the formative period of the Grand Lodge immediately after its institution, the few records preserved to us showing his intelligent initiative and participation at every step.

Originally a member of St. John's Lodge, No. 36, of Richmond, Virginia, he dimitted therefrom and united with Lebanon Lodge, No. 7, of this jurisdiction May 1, 1812; was Worshipful Master, 1813-1815, and treasurer, 1819-1825.

In the Grand Lodge he served as Deputy Grand Master in 1814, and Grand Master as above.

He passed away October, 1829.

AHGP District of Columbia

Source: History of the Grand Lodge and Freemasonry in the District of Columbia, compiled by W. Brother Kenton N. Harper, 1911.

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