DANIEL HARWOOD 1801-1881
DDGM, District 1, 1839
Senior Grand Warden, 1853.
FROM PROCEEDINGS, 1881
From Proceedings, Page 1881-195:
"The decease, since our last Quarterly Communication, of the oldest Past Grand Officer of this Grand Body, is well calculated to arrest our thoughts; for, by these departures, the line of the oldest and the past is drawing irresistibly nearer and very near to us, reminding us that soon we ourselves, and these young Masons, must form that outmost line of venerable men, who calmly stand with gathered sheaves and wait the summons of the unknown world.
The services of Daniel Harwood as Senior Grand Warden closed with the Masonic year ending December, 1853. Those nearest him in seniority, a Deputy Grand Master and a Junior Grand Warden, left the official service of this Grand Body in 1854, though the former had been in service one year earlier. In this noble company of the survivors of official position our now deceased Brother was clearly conspicuous. His was a character and life that Could scarcely be developed except under the peculiar influences which belong to and make up New England manhood. He was born in Barre, Massachusetts, on the 21st of March, 1801, of a stock, on both the father's and mother's side, that was at once resolute, enterprising, thrifty, and foreseeing; and the blood of the parents coursed in the veins of the son, so that he was not only flesh of their flesh, but largely also the child of their spirit.
"He was the eldest son of the second marriage of Peter Harwood, of Sutton, and his mother's maiden name was Prudence Eddy, of Oxford, Mass. He began life in the midst of rural competency, but under the regimen of severe, thorough, honest, healthy work. At the early age of eighteen, after consultation with his parents, to use his own words, he 'started for an education'; and in the New Salem, Dudley, and Leicester Academies, as also in the professional schools of later years, he was methodical, original, self-reliant, and rationally ambitious, giving ripe and early promise of extraordinary brilliancy. So mature and complete were his medical acquirements, that he had no sooner finished his second course of lectures in Boston, than he was invited by Dr. Prentiss, the celebrated dentist, of Portland, to join with him and take charge of his large and lucrative practice.
"This was one of the pivotal points of his life. Harwood was a persevering, diligent, learned, medical student, poor in purse, longing to open his life work. Prentiss was mature, wealthy, overpressed with business, longing for a time of rest. The opportunity was flattering, giving promise of honor, study, work, society, and, in a very. immediate . future, established success. It was accepted. His swiftly-growing reputation lifted him at once to the head of the profession; his work was publicly spoken of as 'the good work,' and he found that his new and incidental calling had, as he said, 'taken possession of him,' and was dominating his life. But it was no mere mechanics with him. He made himself thoroughly conversant with medical and chemical science and technique as auxiliary to his adopted profession. He was a skilful worker in metals also, and both invented and himself manufactured many of the instruments used in his art. Indeed so distinguished were his abilities and so extensive his fame, that, at the establishment of the Harvard Dental College, our Brother Harwood was, without any previous consultation, or even intimation, elected to the Professorship of the Theory and Practice of Dentistry. He accepted the position; but the general delicacy of his.health, and the characteristic fact that he could not secure what seemed to him indispensable to the best influence of that chair, viz., that all students should be required to have taken a full course of medical lectures, especially on the subjects involved in dental practice, coupled with considerations of a domestic nature, finally prevailed upon him to resign the place, and occupy himself only with private studies.
"The earnings of his lucrative labors were ,at one time largely invested in eastern land speculations in the neighborhood of Machias, and were fast being consumed by the insatiate call for more and larger outlays. With the vigor, wisdom, and courage which were everywhere his peculiarity, he at once removed to Machias, then a dead and listless place, situated upon a river that rolled its sleepy and useless current to the ocean without contributing to the help of industry and commerce more than if it were a stagnant pool, saying, to use his own words, that as he had 'gone into that property like a fool, he would go down and take hold of it, and go out like a man.' He started up the mills, improved the river advantages, changed the modes of business, inspired the spirits of the people, set the wheels of all industries in motion, till out of the old stagnation there came an active healthy trade that has survived to this day, and has made the old dormant town a vigorous, lively, enterprising city. His own fortune was restored and duplicated, and prominent citizens of the vicinity to-day gratefully acknowledge their obligation to Daniel Harwood for that wise reformation of business methods which he inaugurated, and the beneficent influence of which enhances the wealth and gives power to the labor of every man along the district of Machias. His toils of brain and muscle were interspersed with hours of relaxation ; and the line and gun were his frequent companions, as he threaded the pine-woods or sported on the waters of the vicinage.
"This portion of his life was full of wild and adventurous details, and needed but the pen of the skillful writer to clothe them with the interest of a romance. Notwithstanding repeated and urgent solicitations, he absolutely refused to accept political office of any kind. : On the 20th of October, 1878, Brother Harwood, with the wife — born Rebecca E. Dana, of Portland — in whose society he had passed fifty years of sweet and tranquil love and sympathy, celebrated, amid the congratulations of their three married daughters, their grand-children, and many friends,- their golden wedding, made rich and beautiful with a profusion of precious gifts, and the assurances of high esteem. Our Brother Harwood exhibited the same, certitude, precision, and command in his Masonic as in his professional and business life. The ritual must be exact, the manner impressive, the time punctual to the second, attention reverent, compliance with the prescribed dress and ceremonial full and complete, the lessons grandly and sharply given, and the tout ensemble as perfect as conscientious doing could achieve.
"He received Masonic light in Morning Star Lodge, of Worcester, in 1822, but affiliated March 3d, 1834, with St. John's Lodge, of Boston. He was one of the four or five persons who, through the troublous times of anti-Masonic excitement, assumed the expenses of the Lodge, continued its meetings, and both assisted and presided in its work, being its Worshipful Master in 1837 and 1838, and again in 1849 and 1850. In 1852 he was elected Senior Grand Warden of the Grand Lodge, serving only for a single year. His Capitular Degrees were received in Nova Scotia, the Mark in St. John, and the others in Halifax, in 1826. He became, in 1832, a member of St. Paul's Royal Arch Chapter, of Boston, and filled successively most of the offices, notably that of High Priest in the years 1835, '36, and '37. He was Most Excellent Grand High Priest of the Grand Chapter of Massachusetts for the years 1855 and 1856. The Council Degrees were conferred upon him by Boston Council of Royal and Select Masters. His application for the Knightly Orders was tinged with a spirit of chivalric humor and defiance. One Allen, a violent anti-Mason, was lecturing the public upon the horrors of Masonry, particularly those branches which were armed with the sword, and presaged war, havoc, bloodshed. Bro. Harwood was one of his auditors, and, at the conclusion of the lectures, having learned, as he was given to understand, what was the worst that could be said to make men hate Knighthood, resolved, if he could, to learn also what there was to make men love it; and so, on April 3, 1832; he was created a Knight Templar in Boston Commandery, and received into full affiliation on May 16, 1832. He forthwith became a prominent and influential Sir Knight, and was assigned at once to active duty. Besides in other offices, he served as Prelate, Captain-General, Generalissimo, and as Eminent Commander for two years succeeding October, 1839, and again for the unusually long term of seven years next succeeding October, 1850. The reminiscences of his brilliant service as the head of the Boston Templars are an enthusiastic memory to-day with many a Sir.Knight of that old Commandery. In the years 1857 and 1858 he assumed and grandly exercised the duties of M. Em. Grand Master of the Grand Encampment of Massachusetts and Rhode Island.
"The degrees of the Ancient and Accepted Rite were conferred upon him, to the 32° inclusive, quite early in the active history of that Rite in Massachusetts. They were in recognition of his great Masonic abilities, and labors, to command the service of his judgment and experience in the administration of these newly growing Orders. He was created a Sov. Grand Ins. Gen'l. of the 33° and Honorary Member of the Supreme Council on December 14, 1866. Honorary Membership was conferred upon him by the Lodge, Chapter, and Commandery which he had made his Masonic homes.
"No man ever more dearly loved Masonry than did our Illustrious Brother Harwood, and with a love that knew no fading even up to the moment of his decease. No man ever gave himself with more cheerful and unselfish devotion to aid the earnest seeker after Masonic light, and no man's words ever burned with more bitter reproof to the Masonic hypocrite and trifler.
"To many he seemed stern, for he could guard
His tongue with his good teeth; to some he showed
Rough as the holly's lower range of leaves, . .
His prickly humor all alive with spears ;
But if you climbed to the serener height,
You found a life in smooth and shining leaf,
And crowned with, calm, and lying nearer heaven."
"He believed in the principles Masonry-inculcated; .in the steadfast friendships it begat; in the broad unobserved charities it administered; in the healtlry and wise restraints it gently held over men; and, but a short time before his last sickness, he declared, with a lip tremulous with emotion and an eye flashing with bright joy, that his regard for the Institution grew stronger and dearer with the lapse of time, and that the enthusiasm with which he sought the light in his youthful days, was equally fresh and strong in his declining years. His death occurred on Sunday, October 2, 1881, and in accordance with his request the Templar Burial Service was rendered by his long loved Boston Commandery.
He was bold in design, clear in vision, resolute in act, fervent in love.
FROM LIBERAL FREEMASON, 1881
Read at the Grand Chapter of Massachusetts at its Annual Convocation.
A lithe and well-proportioned figure was that of Daniel Harwood, in stature about five feet, nine inches, and happily framed for the support of those mental and mechanical qualities, which distinguished him throughout his noted professional career.
Born in an agricultural community, in a part of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, then widely separated from crowded cities, and their more stifled atmospheres, he breathed the sweet air of the hills, and garnered health from farm industries, under the careful training of his parents, until he was eighteen years of age.
Barre was then, as it is now. a pleasantly located town, and there is the place of his birth, which occurred on the 21st day of March, 1801.
The local schools were only available during the winter months, hence he first left home to attend the academy in the town of Leicester, and afterwards graduated from Brunswick College, to enter upon the practice of medicine, which he did in Northampton. It was thought that his special fitness for the practice of dentistry should he recognized, and under urgent solicitation, he went to Portland, Maine, where he associated with a leading professor in that jraclice, but being called to Boston, in 1829, he concluded to remain, and in this city his practice became large and remunerative.
It was in the midst of the Anti-masonic period that he, a young man, with an undetermined future before him, came to the city of his choice, and the residence of his remaining life, with a clear head, Hi a good conscience, and almost immediately identified himself with Freemasonry; where he received the degrees is not clear, but on March 3d, 1834, he was admitted to membership in St. John's Lodge, became its Worshipful Master in 1837 and 1838, and again in 1S49 and 1850, and was its oldest Honorary Member, having been elected to that honor, March 5th, 1860. He was also Senior Grand Warden of the Grand Lodge in 1853.
It does not appear on the records of St. Paul's Chapter where he was exalted, but he was admitted a member of that Chapter in 1832, Iffas elected High Priest in 1835, 1836 and 1837, and later, an Honorary Member.
On the 3d day of April, 1832, he was dubbed Knight Templar in Boston Commandery, was Eminent Commander in 1839 and 1840 and again from October, 1850 to 1857, or nine years in all. No better evidence of his skill as a ritualist, and of his unsurpassed ability as a presiding officer in either of the grades need be presented.
At the Annual Convocation of this Grand Chapter, held the 11th day of September, 1855, Companion Harwood was elected Grand High Priest and served two years, and from this office he was elected to that of M. E. Grand Master of the Grand Encampment of Massachusetts and Rhode Island, and served during 1856 and 1857. M. E. Companion Harwood was distinguished by having pronounced qualities of character, fine intellectual abilities, a high sense of honor, and fidelity in the discharge of every duty imposed upon him. As a disciplinarian he was of the strictest kind, but this was always subordinate to the interests he sought to promote; educated, as he was, in the adverse school of Freemasonry, it is not improbable that his natural decision of character acquired a somewhat firmer tone by reason of exposure to the winds of folly which prevailed during his early connection with it. Anti-masonry lurked [n every corner, and thrust its fanatical zeal into civil, social and religious life; weaker men might quail, did quail before it, but the man of mind and heart rose superior to all its charges and deceits; the community learned to respect him, his neighbors trusted him, his fellow-citizens honored him, and the home which he beautified and adorned, though shrouded in cypress, could smile as it looked out through its tears, at the garlands of regret, which these, his friends, plaintively placed upon his tomb.
He died at his home in Dorchester, on Sunday, October 2d, 1881. At his own request, the Templar Burial Service was performed by Boston Commandery on the 5th, following; there, amid the gently falling leaves, and the sighing winds, the golden bowl, so lately broken, was hidden from the eyes of man, but a brave spirit had returned unto God, who gave it.