An Arkie remembered in Washington, D.C. | Arkansas Blog

An Arkie remembered in Washington, D.C.


ALBERT PIKE: Still a commanding figure in D.C. - JOHN KELLY/WASHINGTON POST
  • John Kelly/Washington Post
  • ALBERT PIKE: Still a commanding figure in D.C.
History buff special: The Washington Post has a Q&A column for readers and a recent query concerned a statue on Fourth Street in Washington near the Judiciary Square metro stop.

It is none other than Albert Pike (remembered in Little Rock by, among others, the Albert Pike Memorial Temple and the former hotel named for him across Scott Street from the Masonic shrine.)

Columnist John Kelly provided a detailed recitation of Pike — Confederate general, lawyer, poet and an important Mason, the organization that paid for the statue in D.C. 

It was said of Pike, “He found Freemasonry in a log cabin and left it in a Temple.” His body is interred in the House of the Temple, headquarters of the Scottish Rite of Freemasonry, at 16th and S streets NW, where there is a museum in his honor and the contents of his library are kept.

You can also see his death mask and compare it to the statue.
Pike supported slavery and arguments continue on the extent of his involvement with the Ku Klux Klan. The Post writer continues:

Even if Pike wasn’t involved with the Klan, he did believe that the races should not mix. He was against integrating Masonic lodges.

It’s hard to judge the claims made about Pike’s prowess in the field of letters. His doorstop of a magnum opus, “Morals and Dogma,” is pretty much unreadable by modern audiences. His poetry has not aged well. He is revered in the Masonic movement, but unless you’re a Mason it’s hard to understand exactly why.

More here from the Encyclopedia of Arkansas. 

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