Friday, March 29, 2013

The Grand Masonic Library of Galicia

Our good brother Victor Guerra is never lacking for energy. I'd love to have a tap and be able to bottle a little of it myself. Here is a synopsis of one of the interests he is currently turning himself toward, and it is a project that I think merits a great deal of support. I offer it in hopes that some might be inspired to support his efforts in at least some small manner.

The raids on masonic libraries by the Franco government during the Spanish Civil War, had a dramatic and negative impact on the documentary record of Spanish Freemasonry, and it has left Freemasons in Spain today lacking sources of study, especially on Masonry itself.

The summary of the library services requisitioned by the repression of the Franco Masonry in the Northwest Regional Grand Lodge in 1936 makes it clear what was the range of reading materials available to Masons of the first third of the century, so it was not in vain that Pedro Gonz·lez Blanco started to respond to these intellectual limits in Masonic with the publication of the magazine Latomia. ( In this respect shows the contents of the library of the Grand Lodge of the Northwest Regional in which several lodges which worked in Asturian)

But while this gap that is felt in the libraries of Masonic lodges can be excused by several factors such as lack of management, language differences, lack of books, it also was in part influenced by the currents of anti-masonic sentiments in society.

Years have passed, and still there is a saying that Masons do not read, at least not books on Freemasonry. This can be seen as a "quip" but it is not entirely false, seeing that what has been published in Spain since 1978 about Freemasonry, which is not much.

Today practically only three publishers consider printing Masonic books, Editorial Idea, with its collection of the square and compass and the publisher ATANOR, whose collection is also called square and compass, then there is only one publisher of totally Masonic character: MasonerÌa.Es , apart of course , the other publishing projects of Masonic foundations and structures themselves.

In an effort to partly mitigate this trend, the Brethren of the Grand Lodge of Spain from Galicia have put forward the idea of the Great Library of Masonry Galician. This is an ambitious project that aims to create a great documentary center of Masonry in Galicia (N.W. Spain).

The Galician Brothers GLE hope to count on the solidarity of all Brethren. scattered around the globe to create the first bibliographic Masonry Center in Galicia with donations of books and magazines on all Masonic themes. The project is designed in three main phases:

FIRST STAGE: Collection and storage of library materials donations from individual Masons or groups. They can store up to about 3000 volumes in the first stage. Please send any appropriately Masonic texts to Apartado de correos n∫ 33 de Barbad·s, Ourense, CP 32890, SPAIN .

Donors may write a dedication in the book, in their own handwriting to the Great Library Project of Masonry in Galicia, stating your full name or nickname, Lodge and Orient or GL where you belong.

As volumes are received, notice will be posted on the Masoneria Siglo XXI facebook site (at least for now) the securities received and the name or pseudonym of donors.

A Search for sponsorships (cofunding) for rent and refurbishment of premises in which to install and catalog no less that 3000 volumes, at which time they would be available to users and library members.
This will give the project an opportunity to post on several websites dedicated to cofunding, both in Spain and worldwide, and through this web page.

Enrich as far as possible the bibliographic materials and consolidate over time this project with the help of volunteers and/or professionals in the field of document management and historical research for the recovery of bibliographic and documentary heritage of Galician Freemasonry.

The success of this project depends solely on its dissemination to all brethren. scattered around the world willing to see masonry flourish in this corner of Spain. Please donate a book (even if it is something you have duplicates of) and disseminate news pf this project to your contacts to ensure its success.

If within two years maximum we can not complete the second phase of the project, all books received will be donated to the symbolic lodges established in Galicia or to the Ar˙s Library of the city of Barcelona,

currently the only Spanish state Masonic library

Victor Guerra .'.

                                                                                  Masonería Siglo XXI


Unknown said...

I am researching our grandfather from Ourense Spain who was (as I just found out) a Freemason. I happen to have an artifact that was just identified by another mason and that got me to wondering if Spain has membership records like those in the US.

We are trying to reconnect with family separated perhaps during the war.

Can you email us for more personal information. We might even find something we can contribute to your project. mhashley @ gmail .com

E C Ballard ஃ said...

It's a bit more complicated. There are many different obediences. So it is far from "one stop shopping." Forget all the fantasies of regularity as preached in North America. If you do not know to what obedience he belonged, you may have to contact dozens of institutions.

However, since during the Franco regime, Freemasonry was outlawed and many masons had been assassinated or executed, it is possible that the obedience he was connected with no longer exists.

The first step would be to determine where he lived. If you know what city he was from, or at least what region,since you know he was from Ourense, it might be possible. The other matter is that you will really need to communicate through Spanish. I can try to connect you with some people over there.