Customer Reviews for

Builders of Empire: Freemasons and British Imperialism, 1717-1927

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star


4 Star


3 Star


2 Star


1 Star


Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation


  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
Page 1 of 1
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 18, 2007


    'Builders of Empire' is a refreshing new book on Freemasonry by Jessica L. Harland-Jacobs, Ph.D., an Assistant Professor of History at the University of Florida. This is a meticulously researched book which sets the record straight on the propagation of the fraternity in the 18th and 19th centuries and links it to British imperialism '1717-1927'. Its intent is to demonstrate the social impact Freemasonry has had on the civilized world. Freemasons are portrayed as crusaders for modern civilization. Consequently, Masons were either envied or viewed with disdain for their influence. As a history book, it doesn't try to interpret Masonic motives, but simply observes the facts. Dr. Harland-Jacobs' style of writing is reminiscent of the works of historian Doris Kearns Goodwin. This is not a novel but an interesting thesis on the symbiotic relationship between the spread of Freemasonry and the rise of the British Empire. Included are descriptions of the colonization of Freemasonry in North America, the Caribbean, India, Australasia, and South Africa. The author is not overly concerned about the esoteric side of Freemasonry, but it is obvious she grasps the significance of our customs 'handshakes and passwords' and degree work. As a non-Freemason she shows a remarkable grasp of what the fraternity is about which, to me personally, is very encouraging. The book discusses in detail the differences between the 'Ancients' and the 'Moderns,' the development and impact of the Regimental Lodges in the British Army, the role of women, the development of Prince Hall Masonry, class distinctions within the fraternity 'elite versus working class', the concept of the 'Empire Grand Lodge,' and much more. In particular, I found the discussion of how the Grand Lodges were forced to adapt to changing times most interesting. For example, issuing warrants to allow Regimental Lodges to meet, coordinating communications between the Grand Lodges of Ireland, Scotland, and England, and how the 'Ancients' and the 'Moderns' ultimately merged. Had the Grand Lodges not adapted, they would have surely perished. The book debunks the myths of the fraternity and shows it for what it is and isn't. As such, it shoots down the arguments of the conspiracy theorists as promoted by the anti-Masons. Its nice to see someone who has honestly done their homework and 'gets it.' The book is written more as a college text book than as a rambling novel. If Dr. Harland-Jacobs uses this in the classroom, it bodes well for the fraternity. This book should be considered as must reading for all Freemasons, particularly Grand Lodge officers, and I believe we are indebted to Dr. Harland-Jacobs for reminding us of the greatness the fraternity once was and could be again if we truly thought of it as a universal concept. Actually, her book left me wanting more, such as a follow-up book as to the rise and fall of Freemasonry in the 20th century.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
Page 1 of 1