Recognising London: Harry Bladon – Freemason and Manufacturer of Masonic Regalia

This magnificent roll of 72 miniature jewels formerly belonged to Harry Bladon, a freemason and a manufacturer of Masonic regalia in South London which includes many examples of his own work, was purchased for the Library and Museum of Freemasonry by the Heritage and Educational Trust of the London Grand Rank Association and is currently on display as part of the Recognising London exhibition marking the centenary of London Grand Rank.

Harry Bladon

Henry Bladon was born in 1867 and initiated into Duke of Cornwall Lodge No. 1839.  He was proposed by his father, Joseph, who was Senior Deacon of the lodge.

Joseph ran a jewellery business in Clerkenwell until his retirement in 1894, when his son took over. He was in partnership with Frederic John Humphries, trading as Bladon & Humphries, and an important part of the business was the manufacture and retail of Masonic jewellery and regalia. The partnership dissolved in 1897 but was continued by Henry Bladon under the same name until 1910, when the name became Bladon & Co. and remained so for some years after his death in 1948.

In 1895 Henry Bladon joined Roll Call Lodge No. 2523, in Middlesex and then became a founder of Victoria Diamond Jubilee Lodge No. 2675 in London in 1897 and Master of the lodge in 1901. Over the next twenty years he founded nine lodges spread over London, Surrey and Middlesex, giving him membership in 12 lodges, of which he was Master of seven.

Keenly interested in Masonic research he was a life member of the correspondence circles for Quatuor Coronati Lodge No. 2076 and the Lodge of Research No. 2439.

He was heavily involved with all the Masonic charities, held numerous provincial ranks in Middlesex and Surrey, achieved London Rank in 1911, was made Grand Standard Bearer in 1916 (when he also became first Master of First Artificer Lodge) and became Past Assistant Grand Director of Ceremonies in 1933. His final rank was Past Grand Deacon.

Between 1911 and 1939 he was on the consecrating teams for London, Middlesex and Surrey and hence became honorary member of 20 lodges, being awarded honorary membership in four more.

He was exalted into Ixion Chapter in 1895, founded nine more chapters, joined another two and became MEZ in all of them, besides various other offices. In 1918 he was holding active office in no less than four. He held numerous provincial Chapter ranks, honorary memberships in 6 chapters, and went on to join other Masonic side orders; the Mark Master Masons, the Royal Ark Mariners, Knights Templars and Rose Croix.