Who was Thomson?

Brother John Thomson
Right Worshipful Past Grand Master
The Award is named for Brother John Thomson, a Past Master of Lodge No. 51, Philadelphia, who served as Right Worshipful Grand Master in 1861-1862. A common man with little schooling, he developed a respected trade as a cooper, learning the intricacies of barrel and tub construction from an apprenticeship with his father. Lack of formal education was no hindrance to him, for he became a very successful businessman and leader in Philadelphia.
John Thomson's long record of service to the Craft is unmatched by any other man in the history of the Grand Lodge.
Born in 1799, he was proud of the fact that he was, for four months of his infancy, contemporary to that illustrious Brother and First President of our Nation, George Washington. He petitioned for membership on the twenty-second day of March 1827, and was entered into the Fraternity by the officers of Lodge No. 51 during the height of the Anti-Masonic period.
During his Masonic career, Brother Thomson met in three different Masonic Halls owned by the Grand Lodge, and was well acquainted with the financing and details of the construction of the Temple at One North Broad Street that we now enjoy. Throughout his sixty-three year tenure of membership, he served as a Lodge officer for twenty-six years, and a Grand Lodge officer for thirty years. In fact, Brother Thomson was the only individual to ever serve in all six elected offices of the Grand Lodge:
Grand Treasurer from 1842 to 1853 Deputy Grand Master in 1859 and 1860
Junior Grand Warden in 1856 and 1857Grand Master in 1861 and 1862
Senior Grand Warden in 1858Grand Secretary from 1867-1880
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