What does "Masonic Jurisdiction There-unto Belonging" mean as part of the Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania official title?
The Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania had an early and distinguished standing in the Masonic world, both during its existence as a Provincial Grand Lodge and as an independent Grand Lodge, which resulted in a number of lodges outside of Pennsylvania applying for warrants. The official title of the Grand Lodge is: "The Right Worshipful Grand Lodge of the Most Ancient and Honorable Fraternity of Free and Accepted Masons of Pennsylvania and Masonic Jurisdiction Thereunto Belonging." The latter part of the title was added officially to the Grand Lodge's name on Sept. 26, 1786.
It may be interesting to know the number of lodges warranted outside of Pennsylvania and where they were located. In this country: Delaware, 7; New Jersey, 3; Virginia, 3; Maryland, 9; Ohio, 1; Indian Territory, 1; and Northwest Territory, 1. Those warranted outside the United States: Santo Domingo, 1; Argentina, 1; Mexico, 1; Trinidad, 1; Cuba, 8; and Uruguay, 1. There also were 9 military warrants granted. Today, there are no lodges operating under warrant of the Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania outside the Common-wealth. (Source: "Cavalcade of Pennsylvania Freemasonry" by Frank W. Bobb, March 1986, The Masonic Library and Museum of PA.)
What is the "Regius Poem"?
The earliest known document telling about the Craft, giving the history, rules, and laws governing the conduct of operative masons, is the "Regius Poem," dated about 1390. The document was named "Regius" because it was part of the Royal Library of England and was presented to the British Museum by King George II. It was written in verse, whereas all other copies of the "Old Charges," as these documents are known, are in prose. (Source: Masonic Questions & Answers, compiled by the Office of Masonic Education, Grand Lodge of PA, 1999)
How is a Masonic lodge formed in Pennsylvania?
Fifteen or more Master Masons, having resigned from the lodges to which they belonged, may petition the Grand Lodge for a warrant to form a lodge and practice the rites of Freemasonry. The petition must be signed not only by the applicants, but also by three well known Masons who are members of a subordinate lodge, the District Deputy Grand Master, and be recommended by another subordinate lodge. After the Grand Lodge has approved the petition, the lodge is then duly constituted by the Grand Master or by someone delegated by the Grand Master to perform that duty. (Source: Masonic Questions & Answers compiled by the Office of Masonic Education, Grand Lodge of PA, 1999)