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Monthly Lecture Series: The Role of Freemasons of Color in the 1700s

December 20, 2018 @ 6:30 pm - 7:30 pm

This month, the Livingston Masonic Library welcomes the Junior Grand Warden of the Grand Lodge of New York, RW E. Oscar Alleyne, who will explore The Role of Freemasons of Color in the 1700s. He will explore the myths, evidence and role of men of color in the early growth period of the institution.  The audience will be able to gain a unique perspective of the lesser-understood participation among men of color in Freemasonry outside of commonly and incorrectly perceived notions.

RW Alleyne will also focus on two key figures, Joseph Bologne (in Paris circa 1773) and Angelo Soliman (in Austria circa 1781), both of whom will be examined from a historical and Masonic perspective. The findings will illustrate and challenge conventional narratives which suggest that access to Freemasonry was categorically denied to men of color. There are instances that provide a differing viewpoint, with implications which transcend and reveal previously unexplored facts about the legacy of this universal Brotherhood of Men.

RW E. Oscar Alleyne is from Walden, New York. In 2018, he was elected for as the Junior Grand Warden of the Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons of the State of New York. Raised in Wallkill Lodge No. 627 in Orange-Rockland District, he served in 2014-2016 as Master of Wappingers Lodge No.671 in the Dutchess District.

He enjoys being active in the Craft. He is the Past Commander-in-Chief and Past Sovereign Prince of the Scottish Rite Valley of The Hudson. He also served as the first Grand Superintendent for the State of New York of the Grand Council of the Allied Masonic Degrees, USA. He is a Fellow of the Philalethes Society and is the Second Vice President of the Board and Fellow of the Masonic Society. He is also the Regional Treasurer for The Operatives USA, which is an invitational body dedicated to the preservation of the history and workings of Operative Guild Masonry.

RW Alleyne lectures internationally on historical, ritualistic, philosophical, leadership, and other topics of Masonic interest and is a member of several Masonic research and invitational bodies.

He holds a Doctorate from the New York Medical College and is a Senior Advisor for Public Health programs at the National Association of County and City Health Officials in Washington, DC. There, he is responsible for providing executive leadership, strategic visioning, senior management and technical assistance to the country’s 3,000 local governmental public health departments. He directly oversees a portfolio of Infectious Disease Prevention and Control, Public Health, Pandemic and Catastrophic Preparedness, and Public Health Informatics. He interfaces directly with the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Department of Homeland Security, the FBI and the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response, FDA, USDA, EPA and several other national agencies.

Previously, he was the Director of Epidemiology & Public Health Planning for the Rockland County Department of Health where he was responsible for investigating and monitoring all disease outbreaks for a population of 312,000 residents. He guided strategic planning and collaboration building with county, State, and federal officials, as well as nongovernmental local organizations, to implement several community health initiatives which helped Rockland County to become ranked as No. 1 among all counties in New York in 2015.

A published author, subject matter expert, and scientific presenter in the field of applied epidemiology, health policy and public health, he served as President, Chair and active Board Member of several professional Public Health Associations and is a faculty member/lecturer/presenter at a number of undergraduate and graduate educational institutions.

The featured image is of Angelo Soliman in 1750, by Gottfired Haid based on Johann Nepomuk Steiner.

The image of RW Alleyne is courtesy The Grand Lodge of New York.


December 20, 2018
6:30 pm - 7:30 pm
Event Category:


Chancellor Robert R Livingston Masonic Library
71 West 23rd St, 14th floor
New York, NY 10010 United States
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