Robert L.D. Cooper  Author, Historian, Freemason.

Robert L. D. Cooper


My apologies to anyone who might be interested, I have not updated this website for a long time but am now attempting to do so.

Requests for me to give presentations to Lodges and Chapters have taken up some of my time but that is not really an excuse not to report the details.

I was honoured to be invited to give a presentation to the Cumberland and Westmoreland Chapter of Installed Principals on Thursday, 1 June. The title was ‘The Holy Royal Arch – the Scottish Dimension’ and I think it was well received.

For a long description of my adventures regarding travel and accommodation see the ‘My News’ page at:


I have retired! My problem now is what to do with myself. Work in progress as they say…


I have finally decided to retire! Nine year’s overdue but the die is now cast. More details at Latest News.


It was exactly the same when I decided to keep a journal. All those important and deep thoughts jotted down for posterity. Full of enthusiasum I managed to write almost dailly for a few months, then weekly and then… I well I think you know what happened next! Something similar has happend with this website but I am going to try to make amends. Wish me luck.


I am now back in the office full-time but as I mused earlier I wondered what awaited me on my return. Now I know – a huge backlog of queries, messages and information. After almost six months of enforced absence from the office that is hardly surprising. For those of you awaiting a reply please bear with me. It will take some considerable time to catch up.

Please also be aware that although some staff have returned to Freemasons’ Hall the office is by no means back to normal and is not open to anyone other than members of staff.

Further restrictions are necessary due to the installation of a lift (from the basement to the second floor) which is now awaiting official approval for full use. The good news is that the lift will allow two wheelchair users to access Freemasons’ Hall from the basement garage to and to the ground, first and second floors – including the Musuem and Library. But don’t all rush! Exact arrangements are not yet in place. In the meantime please call Freemasons’ Hall (0131 225 5577 for the latest information regarding reopening the building and using the lift).


I wonder what arrears of work will confront me on my return? That said I am looking forward to a return to work and to answer all your questions, requests for information and donations of all types to the Museum and Library.

It is a bit like looking forward to what Santa is going to deliver for Christmas! I know that some books and personal gifts have been addressed to me at Freemasons’ Hall and, like a youngest on Christmas Eve, I am itching to see what goodies have been delivered. I shall let you know the exciting items as and when…

Robert L D Cooper, Historian, Author and Freemason

As from 1st April 2020 (I wonder if the date is in any way significant?)! I have been on furlough leave despite being able and willing to work from home.

Furlough leave means that I can do no work for my employer, the Grand Lodge of Scotland.  That does not mean that I cannot do ‘work’ of a personal nature – nearly all of which is related to Freemasonry, particularly Scottish Freemasonry

In order to continue provide my readers their regular ‘fix’ of Scottish Masonic history etc. I have created my own personal Facebook page at:

This has been a liberating experience – no longer bound by Grand Lodge policy I am now free to post and comment as an historian, author and Freemason.

How long I shall be at ‘liberty’ is presently unknown but clearly the lock-down will end at some point and I will return to normal – back in the library. Please note that I shall no longer be maintaining the Grand Lodge Facebook page

As I cannot officially deal with enquiries Grand Lodge has made arrangements for all email enquires to be received and disseminated by a member of staff. To submit an enquiry please send an email to this address: 

If your enquiry is urgent you can call:

      • Dawn Oliff — 07464 683630
      • Sue Williams — 07881 440272
      • Andrew Paterson — 07787 217772

I assume that some sort of queuing system will be in place so send your enquiry in sooner rather than later otherwise…


Earlier text on this page:

As some of you will know I sustained a leg injury in June 2017 when I was in Boston, Mass, on Masonic business. After four operations and four spells in hospital (one for more than five weeks due to an infection) I eventually returned to work. During the past year I drew up a list of things to do. Updating his web site made it onto that list before I stopped adding to the list because it was becoming far too lengthy.

I added the above paragraph to see if I could remember how to make changes. The down side to that is that should now start to bring the web site up to date. More work!

Below is what was previously on the site and I leave it here for now. I hope to get round to amending this also in the fairly near future.

What is the purpose of this web site? I keep asking myself the same question! What happened was that the publishers of my books regularly asked me ‘what’s your URL’, or ‘where can we find your web site?’ more ominously, ‘when are you going to set up your web site?’ Apparently most authors have their own web site and the publisher links to the authors. I assume it is supposed to work in the opposite direction as well? All well and good I thought to myself, I set up a web site, at my own expense and have to keep doing things with it, adding things and removing old stuff and generally telling the world about oneself. Hmm. I still did not get it – I spend money, have to do regular maintenance (this is essential I am told) when I could be doing other stuff. Then I thought I’d got the answer – everyone has a web site, not just authors. No, hardly anyone I knew had their own web site. Then I got some inside information. Publishers get loads of enquiries from people who have read the author’s books and can’t keep up with the sheer volume of enquiries. Some people just want to know what the author looks like or a bit more background information and so if the author has a web site the publisher does not have to get too involved – just refer the person to the author’s web site. Anyway, as you can see I gave in and so this is ‘my’ web site but please don’t expect too much. I’ll add things when I can and what I think people might be interested in, although I am pretty sure that most will not.

Freemasons’ Hall, where I am fortunate to be the Curator, is in the centre of the city the Capital of Scotland in George Street, that is one street up from the main street – Princes’ Street which is the main shopping street of the capital. It must be one of the most unusual ‘shopping’ streets in the world having only side with buildings – the other side has an garden area which lies below a huge castle.  For that reason it is often considered to be one of the most attractive streets in the world.

George Street was until about 10 – 15 years ago the financial centre of the city, and of Scotland, but a new financial district has been built approximately half a mile away and George Street is now the place for designer shops, for example Cruise and Gap are on one side of Freemasons’ Hall with the very up market jewellers Hamilton and Inches  across the road. Inches was a Freemason and official ‘jeweller’ to the Grand Lodge of Scotland. Many of the banks, building societies and insurance companies which had either their head office or main branches in the street most have now been converted into upmarket restaurants, bistros and some rather spectacular bars – try visiting The Dome or The Standing Order. One of the most enduring establishments in George Street is Gray’s of George Street a supplier of household and garden utensils since 1818 which has been at it’s present location since the early 1900’s. However, the face of the street is changing and Gray’s is no longer. The business was no long of interest to the present generation (so I am informed) and the business was closed. 89 George Street is now the White Stuff.

Now you know a little about me and where I work. This web site is therefore mainly to let readers of my books know a wee bit more about me. To learn more, if you are really interested, click here or on the previous link..