Noted Expert on History of Freemasonry Available to Reporters Covering Release of Dan Brown's The Lost Symbol

September 14, 2009

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WORCESTER, Mass.-Steven C. Bullock, professor of history at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) and a noted expert on the history of Freemasonry in the United States, is available as an expert source for articles on the forthcoming book The Lost Symbol by Dan Brown (to be released on Sept. 15 by Doubleday Books).

Bullock has earned an international reputation as a scholar in early American History. In particular, his groundbreaking research into the complexities and subtleties of Freemasonry in America and around the world, as described in his seminal book, Revolutionary Brotherhood: Freemasonry and the Transformation of the American Social Order, has set the standard for historical research and analysis in this field. Because of his extensive knowledge of Freemasonry and its history, Bullock is frequently called upon as an expert on the fraternity.

He was described as "a leading scholar of the Masonic fraternity" in a 2005 U.S. News & World Report cover story. He has appeared on Good Morning, America (ABC), Paula Zahn Now (CNN), and Talk of the Nation (National Public Radio), as well as in documentaries aired on PBS, the History Channel, the National Geographic Channel, and the Discovery Channel. He has been quoted widely in national coverage of stories involving the Masons.

            Bullock's 1996 book, the first comprehensive history of the fraternity, traces Freemasonry through its first century in America, from its origins in Britain, to its near destruction by a massive anti-Masonic movement in the 19th century, to its reconfiguration into the brotherhood still in existence today. Using lodge records, members' reminiscences, and local and Masonic histories, Bullock links Freemasonry with the changing ideals of early American society (the fraternity counted Benjamin Franklin, George Washington, Paul Revere, and Andrew Jackson among its members). He recounts how the spread of Freemasonry during and after the Revolution played an important role in shaping the nation's ideas of liberty and equality, but also how the more inclusive and universalist Masonic ideas became, the more threatening its members' economic and emotional bonds seemed to outsiders.