Clermont, Count Of
Louis of Bourbon, prince of the blood royal and Count of Clermont, was elected by sixteen of the Paris Lodges Perpetual Grand Master, for the purpose of correcting the numerous abuses which had crept into French Freemasonry. He did not, however, fulfil the expectations of the French Freemasons; for the next year he abandoned the supervision of the Lodges, and new disorders arose. He still, however, retained the Grand Mastership, and died in 1771, being succeeded by his nephew, the Duke of Chartres.
CLINTON, DE WITT
A distinguished statesman, who was born at Little Britain, New York, March 2, 1769, and died on the 11th of February, 1828. He entered the Masonic Order in 1793, and the next year was elected Master of his Lodge. In 1806, he was elevated to the position of Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of New York, and in 1814, to that of Grand Master of the Grand Encampment. In 1816, he was elected General Grand High Priest of the General Grand Chapter of the United States. In 1813, he became unwittingly complicated with the Spurious Consistory, established by Joseph Cerneau in the city of New York, but he took no active part in its proceedings, and soon withdrew from all connection with it. When the anti-Masonic excitement arose in this country in 1826, in consequence of the affair of William Morgan, whom the Freemasons were accused of having put to death, Brother Clinton was Governor of the State of New York, and took all the necessary measures for the arrest of the supposed criminals. But, although he offered a liberal reward for their detection, he was charged by thp Anti-Masons with official neglect and indifference, charges which were undoubtedly false and malicious. Spenser, the special attorney of the State, employed for the prosecution of the offenders, went w far as to resign his office, and to assign, as a mason for his resignation, the want of sympathy and support on the part of the Executive. But all of the accusations and insinuations are properly to be attributed to political excitement, Anti Masonry having been adopted soon after its origin by the politicians as an engine for their advancement to office. Brother Clinton was an honorable man and a true patriot, an ardent and devoted Freemason. (For details as to his farsighted and successful activity in the foundation of the Public School System in New York City and State see Public Schools.)
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