As a schoolboy, one of Red Skelton's teachers explained the words and meaning of the Pledge of Allegiance to his class. Skelton later wrote down, and eventually recorded, his recollection of this lecture. It is followed by an observation of his own.
I - - Me; an individual; a committee of one.
Pledge - - Dedicate all of my worldly goods to give without self-pity.
Allegiance - - My love and my devotion.
To the Flag - - Our standard; Old Glory ; a symbol of Freedom; wherever she waves there is respect, because your loyalty has given her a dignity that shouts, Freedom is everybody's job.
United - - That means that we have all come together.
States - - Individual communities that have united into forty-eight great states. Forty-eight individual communities with pride and dignity and purpose. All divided with imaginary boundaries, yet united to a common purpose, and that is love for country.
And to the Republic - - Republic--a state in which sovereign power is invested in representatives chosen by the people to govern. And government is the people; and it's from the people to the leaders, not from the leaders to the people.
For which it stands
One Nation - - One Nation--meaning, so blessed by God.
Indivisible - - Incapable of being divided.
With Liberty - - Which is Freedom; the right of power to live one's own life, without threats, fear, or some sort of retaliation.
And Justice - - The principle, or qualities, of dealing fairly with others.
For All - - For All--which means, boys and girls, it's as much your country as it is mine.
And now, boys and girls, let me hear you recite the Pledge of Allegiance:
I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic, for which it stands; one nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.
Since I was a small boy, two states have been added to our country, and two words have been added to the Pledge of Allegiance: Under God. Wouldn't it be a pity if someone said that is a prayer, and that would be eliminated from schools, too?
Brother Red Skelton
This list contains a small percentage of the men from around the world and across time who were and are proud to call themselves FreeMasons. This list is in no way meant to exclude many other great men who had a part in building FreeMasonry into the Organization it is today, without whom, it may have perished from this Earth.
Abbott, Robert Sengstacke - Founder/publisher Chicago Defender
Abbott, Sir John J.C. - Prime Minister of Canada 1891-92
Adams, Samuel - American Revolutionary and Patriot
Aldrin, Edwin E. - Astronaut
Allen, Richard - Founder/first bishop AME Church
Armstrong, Louis - Jazz Musician
Arnold, Benedict - American Revolutionary and Traitor
Arnold, General Henry "Hap" - Commander of the Army Air Force
Ashburn, Richie - Baseball Hall of Famer
Austin, Stephen F. - Father of Texas
Autry, Gene - Actor
Bach, Johann Sebastian - Composer
Baldwin, Henry - Supreme Court Justice
Balfour, Lloyd - Jewelry
Bartholdi, Frederic A. - Designed the Statue of Liberty
Bassie, William "Count" - Orchestra leader/composer
Baylor, Robert E. B. - Founder Baylor University
Beard, Daniel Carter - Founder Boy Scouts
Bell, Lawrence - Bell Aircraft Corp.
Bennett, Viscount R.B. - Prime Minister of Canada 1930-35
Berlin, Irving - Entertainer
Black, Hugo L. - Supreme Court Justice
Blair, Jr., John - Supreme Court Justice
Blatchford, Samuel - Supreme Court Justice
Bolivar, Simon - South American Revolutionary
Borden, Sir Robert L. - Prime Minister of Canada 1911-1920
Borglum, Gutzon & Lincoln - Father and Son who carved Mt. Rushmore
Borgnine, Ernest - Actor
Bowell, Sir Mackenzie - Prime Minister of Canada 1894-96
Bowie, James - Alamo
Bradley, Omar N. - Military leader
Bradley, Thomas - Mayor of Los Angeles, CA
Brant, Joseph - Chief of the Mohawks 1742 - 1807
Buchanan, James - President of the U.S.
Burnett, David G. - 1st President of the Republic of Texas
Burns, Robert - The National Poet of Scotland
Burr, Aaron - American Politician
Burton, Harold H. - Supreme Court Justice
Byrd, Admiral Richard E. - Flew over North Pole
Byrnes, James F. - Supreme Court Justice
Bzrezinski, Douglass G. - Professional Football Palyer (Philadelphia Eagles2000-2002)
Calvo, Father Francisco - Catholic Priest who started Freemasonry in Costa Rica 1865
Cantor, Eddie - Entertainer
Carson, Christopher "Kit" - Frontiersman, scout and explorer
Casanova - Italian Adventurer, writer and entertainer
Catton, John - Supreme Court Justice
Chagrin, Jean Francios - Designer of The Arc De Triomphe in Paris, France
Chrysler, Walter P. - Automotive fame
Churchill, Winston - British Leader
Citroen, Andre - French Engineer and motor car manufacturer
Clark, Roy - Country Western Star
Clark, Thomas C. - Supreme Court Justice
Clark, William - Explorer
Clarke, John H. - Supreme Court Justice
Clemens, Samuel L. - Mark Twain - writer
Cobb, Ty - Baseball Player
Cody, "Buffalo Bill" William - Indian fighter, Wild West Show
Cohan, George M. - Broadway star
Cole, Nat 'King' - Great ballad singer
Collodi, Carlo - Writer of Pinocchio
Colt, Samuel - Firearms inventor
Combs, Earle Bryan - Baseball Hall of Fame
Cooper, Leroy Gordon, Jr. - American astronaut
Crockett, David - American Frontiersman and Alamo fame
Cushing, William - Supreme Court Justice
DeMille, Cecil - Actor
Dempsey, Jack - Sports
Desaguliers, John Theophilus - Inventor of the planetarium
Devanter, Willis Van - Supreme Court Justice
Dewey, Thomas - Presidential Candidate
Diefenbaker, John G. - Prime Minister of Canada 1957-63
Dole, Robert - Former Senator from Kansas
Doolittle, General James - Famous Air Force Pilot
Douglas, William O. - Supreme Court Justice
Dow, William H. - Dow Chemical Co.
Doyle, Sir Author Conan - Writer - Sherlock Holmes
Drake, Edwin L - American Pioneer of the Oil industry
Dubois, W.E.B. - Educator/author/historian
Dunant, Jean Henri - Founder of the Red Cross
Edward VII - King of England
Edward VIII - King of England who abdicated the throne in less than 1 year
Eiffel, Gustave Alexandre - Designed Eiffel Tower
Ellington, Edward K. "Duke" - Orchestra Leader/composer
Ellsworth, Oliver - Supreme Court Justice
Ervin Jr, Samuel J. - Headed "Watergate" committee
Evers, Medger Wiley - Civil Rights Leader
Faber, Eberhard - Head of the famous Eberhard Faber Pencil Company
Fairbanks, Douglas - Silent film actor
Feller, Bob - Baseball player
Field, Stephen J. - Supreme Court Justice
Fields, W.C. - Actor
Fisher, Geoffrey - Archbishop of Canterbury 1945 - 1961
Fitch, John - Inventor of the Steamboat
Fleming, Sir Alexander - Invented Penicillin
Ford, Gerald R. - President of the U.S.
Ford, Henry - Pioneer Automobile Manufacturer
Forten, James - Abolitionist/manufacturer
Fortune, Timothy Thomas - Journalist
Franklin, Benjamin - 1 of 13 Masonic signers of Constitution of the U.S.
Fulton, Robert - Inventor of 1st Submarine and Steam powered warship
Gable, Clark - Actor
Garabaldi,Giuseppe - Italian General
Garfield, James A. - President of the U.S.
Gatling, Richard J. - Built the "Gatling Gun"
George VI - King of England during W.W. II
Gibbon, Edward - Writer - Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire
Gilbert, Sir William S. - Was the librettis for "Pirates of Penzance"
Gillette, King C. - Gillette Razor Co.
Glenn, John H. - First American to orbit the earth in a space craft
Godfrey, Arthur - Actor
Goldwater, Barry - Former Senator from Arizona, Presidential Candidate
Grant, Ulyses S. - US Military Leader, President of US
Gray, Harold Lincoln - Creator of "Little Orphan Annie"
Grissom, Virgil - Astronaut
Grock - Swiss Circus Clown
Guillotin, Joseph Ignace - Inventor of the "Guillotin"
Haley, Alex - Author
Hancock, John - 1 of 13 Masonic signers of Declaration of Independence
Harding, Warren G. - President of the U.S.
Hardy, Oliver - Actor - Comedian
Harlan, John M. - Supreme Court Justice
Hawkins, Augustus F. - US Congressman from California
Hayden, Josef - Composer
Hedges, Cornelius - "Father" of Yellowstone National Park
Henry, Patrick - Patriot
Henson, Josiah - Inspired the novel "Uncle Tom's Cabin"
Herbert, James - "Eubie" Blake, composer/pianist
Hilton, Charles C. - American Hotelier
Hoban, James - Architect for the U.S. Captial
Hoe, Richard M. - Invented the rotory press, revolutionizing newspaper printing
Hoover, J. Edgar - Director of FBI
Hope, Bob - Comedian
Hornsby, Rogers - An original member of the Baseball Hall of Fame
Houdini, Harry - Magician
Houston, Sam - 2nd&4th President of the Republic of Texas
Humphrey, Hubert H., Jr. - 38th Vice President of the U.S.
Irwin, James - American astronaut
Ives, Burl - entertainer
Jackson, Andrew - President of the U.S.
Jackson, Reverend Jesse - Minister
Jackson, Robert H. - Supreme Court Justice
Jenner, Edward - Inventor - Vaccination
Johnson, Andrew - President of the U.S.
Johnson, Jack - Boxer - "The Great White Hope"
Jolson, Al - Fame as the first 'talking picture' the Jazz Singer
Jones, Anson - 5th President of the Republic of Texas
Jones, John Paul - Naval Commander
Jones, Melvin - One of the founders of the Lions International
Kemp, Jack - Former Congressman, Quarterback for Buffallo Bills
Key, Francis Scott - Wrote U.S. National Anthem
Khan III, Aga - Statesman
Kipling, Rudyard - Writer
La Guardia, Fiorella H. - La Guardia Airport, Mayor of New York 1930's & 40's
Lafayette, Marquis de - Supporter of American Freedom
Lake, Simon - Built first submarine successful in open sea.
Lamar, Joseph E. - Supreme Court Justice
Lamar, Mirabeau B. - 3rd President of the Republic of Texas
Land, Frank S. - Founder Order of DeMolay
Leazer, Gary - Investigated Freemasonry for Southern Baptist Convention and later joined Freemasonry
Lewis, Meriwether - Explorer
Lincoln, Elmo - First actor to play Tarzan of the Apes (1918)
Lindbergh, Charles - Aviator
Lipton, Sir Thomas - Founder Lipton Tea Company
Livingston, Robert - Co-Negotiator for purchase of Louisiana Territory
Lloyd, Harold C. - Entertainer
Macadam, John - Invented "blacktop pavement"
MacArthur, General Douglas - Commander of Armed Forces in Phillipines
MacDonald, Sir John A. - Prime Minister of Canada 1867-73 & 1878-91
Marshall, George C. - US Military Leader
Marshall, James W. - Discovered Gold at Sutter's Mill California 1848
Marshall, John - Chief Justice U.S. Supreme Court 1801 - 1835
Marshall, Thurgood - Associate Justice, U.S. Supreme Court
Mathews, Stanley - Supreme Court Justice
Mayer, Louis B. - Film producer who merged to form Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM)
Mayo, Dr. William and Charles - Founded the Mayo Clinic
Maytag, Fredrick - Maytag
McGovern, George - American politician
McKinley, William - President of the U.S.
Mecherle, George Jacob - Founder, State Farm Insurance
Menninger, Karl A. - Psychiatrist famous for treating mental illness
Mesmer, Franz Anton - practiced Mesmerism which led to Hypnotism
Metcalfe, Ralph H. - Olympic Champion
Michelson, Albert Abraham - Successfully measured the speed of light in 1882
Minton, Sherman - Supreme Court Justice
Mix, Tom - U.S. Marshal turned actor. Stared in over 400 western films
Monroe, James - President of the U.S.
Montgolfier, Jacques Etienne - Co-developer of the first practical hot-air balloon
Moody, William H. - Supreme Court Justice
Morris, Dr. Robert - Poet and Founder of the Order of Eastern Star
Mozart, Wolfgang Amadeus - Composer
Murphy, Audie - Most decorated American Soldier of WWII.
Naismith, James - Inventor of Basketball
Nelson, Samuel - Supreme Court Justice
New, Harry S. - Postmaster General who established Airmail
Newton, Joseph Fort - Christian Minister
Nunn, Sam - U.S. Senator
Olds, Ransom E. - American automobile pioneer (Oldsmobile)
Otis, James - Famous for "Taxations without Representation is Tyranny"
Palmer, Arnold - Golf Pro
Papst, Charles F. - Coined the term "Athletes Foot"
Paterson, William - Supreme Court Justice
Peale, Norman Vincent - Founder of "Guidepost" and Minister
Penny, James C. - Retailer
Perry, Robert E. - First man to reach the North Pole (1909)
Pershing, John Joseph - Decorated American Soldier
Pike, Zebulon - Pike's Peak named after him
Pitney, Mahlon - Supreme Court Justice
Poinsett, Joel R. - U.S. Minister to Mexico who developed the flower: Poinsettia
Polk, James Knox - President of the U.S.
Pullman, George - Built first sleeping car on train.
Pushkin, Aleksander - Russian Poet
Rangal, Charles B. - U.S. Congressman from New York
Reed, Stanley F. - Supreme Court Justice
Revere, Paul - Famous American
Richardson, Elliot - U.S. Attorney General
Rickenbacker, Eddie - Great American Air Force Ace
Ridgeway, Matthew - US Military Leader
Ringling Brothers - All 7 brothers and their father were Masons.
Robinson, Sugar Ray - American Boxer
Rogers, Roy - American cowboy and screen star
Rogers, Will - Actor
Roosevelt, Franklin D. - President of the U.S.
Roosevelt, Theodore - President of the U.S.
Rutledge, Wiley B. - Supreme Court Justice
Salten, Felix - Creator of Bambi
Sanders, Bishop Carl J. - United Methodist Church
Sarnoff, David - Father of T.V.
Sax, Antoine Joseph - Invented the Saxophone (1846)
Schirra, Walter Marty, Jr. - American astronaut
Schoonover, George - Founder of "The Builder"
Scott, Sir Walter - Writer
Sellers, Peter - Actor
Sexson, Mark - Minister & Founder: Intl. Order of Rainbow for Girls
Shakespeare, William - Writer
Sibelius, Jean - Composer (Finland)
Skelton, Red - Entertainer
Smith, John Stafford - Wrote the music that became the US National Anthem.
Sousa, John Philip - Led the U.S. Marine Band from 1880 - 1892
Speaker, Tris - Baseball Hall of Famer
Stanford, Leland - Drove the gold spike linking the intercontinental railroad & Founded Stanford University
Stuben, Baron von - Prussian born American Revolutionary
Stewart, Potter - Supreme Court Justice
Still, Andrew T. - American Physician who devised treatment of Osteopathy
Stokes, Carl B. - First Black elected Mayor, Cleveland, Ohio
Stokes, Louis - U.S. Congressman from Ohio
Stratton, Charles "Tom Thumb" - Entertainer
Swayne, Noah H. - Supreme Court Justice
Swift, Johathan - Wrote Gulliver's Travels
Taft, William Howard - President of the U.S.
Teets, John W. - Chairman and President of Dial Corporation
Thomas, Danny - Actor, Entertainer
Thomas, Dave - Founder of Wendy's Restaurant
Thomas, Lowell - Brought Lawrence of Arabia to public notice
Thurston, Howard - Last of the great vaudeville magicians.
Tillis, Mel - Country Singer
Tirpitz, Alfred Von - German Naval officer responsible for submarine warfare
Todd, Thomas - Supreme Court Justice
Travis, Colonel William B. - Alamo
Trimble, Robert - Supreme Court Justice
Truman, Harry S. - President of the U.S.
Vinson, Frederick M. - Supreme Court Justice
Voltaire - French writer and philosopher
Wadlow, Robert Pershing - Tallest human on record being almost 9 feet tall
Wallace, Governor George C. - Presidential Candidate who was nearly assasinated
Wallace, Lewis - Wrote "Ben Hur"
Wanamaker, John - Retailer
Warner, Jack - Warner Brothers Fame
Warren, Earl - Supreme Court Justice
Washington, Booker T. - Educator/Founder Tuskagee Institute
Washington, George - President of US, 1st
Wayne, John - Actor
Webb, Matthew - First man to swim the English Channel (1875)
Wesberry, Dr. James P. - Former Exec. Dir./Editor Southern Baptist Publication Sunday
Whiteman, Paul - "King of Jazz"
Wilde, Oscar - Writer
Woodbury, Levi - Supreme Court Justice
Woods, William B. - Supreme Court Justice
Wootton MD, Percy - President American Medical Association (1997- )
Wright, Orville & Wilber - Inventors of flight
Wyler, William - Director of "Ben Hur"
Young, Andrew - Former Mayor of Atlanta
Young, Cy - Cy Young Award
Zanuck, Darryl F. - Co-founder of 20th Century Productions in 1933
Ziegfeld, Florenz - His Ziegfeld's Follies began in 1907