Adventures of Huckleberry Finn's Masonic alludes are most closely linked to Huck's friendship with Tom Sawyer. The oaths taken by Huck, Tom, and other members of the "gang" resemble those taken by Freemasons, specifically when readers consider the consequences of breaking these oaths. Tom declares that any member who reveals the secrets of the gang will suffer the deaths of his family. Death is widely believed to be a prescribed result of revealing Freemasonry secrets, and Masons are rumored to be involved in the disappearances of men who have threatened to make Masonic secrets public, specifically in the United States.

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Photo of Masonic oaths courtesy of Phoenix Masonry


Captain William Morgan outlines these oaths and other Masonic traditions in his 1827 book, Illustrations of Freemasonry. In the mid-1820s, Morgan was at odds with aFreemason lodge in Batavia, New York, and after the of Illustrations of Freemasonry, the Masons went on the offensive, protesting the book and causing Morgan to be jailed several times for numerous offenses. Captain Morgan soon disappeared, and the Freemasons are widely believed to have kidnapped and murdered Morgan in response to the book's publication; however, there is controversy concerning Morgan's case, as some believe that the remains positively identified by Morgan's wife do not actually belong to the captain. The presumed remains of Captain Morgan are buried in Batavia, where a monument was constructed to honor his memory. Although no men were charged with the murder of Captain Morgan, three masons, Loton Lawon, Nicholas Chesebro and Edward Sawyer, were convicted of kidnapping Morgan.[1]
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A passage engraved on Captain Morgan's memorial in Batavia Cemetery is pictured above.

The monument reads:
Sacred to the memory of Wm. Morgan, a native of Virginia, a Capt. in the War of 1812, a respectable citizen of Batavia, and a martyrto the freedom of writing, printing and speaking the truth. He was abducted from near this spot in the year 1826, by Freemasons and murdered for revealing the secrets of their order. The court records of Genesee County and the files of the Batavia Advocate, kept in the Recorders office contain the history of the events that caused the erection of this monument.
Captain Morgan's book, Illustrations in Freemasonry, can be viewed in its entirety online.
  1. ^ Ridley, Jasper. The Freemasons: A History of the World's Most Powerful Secret Society, pp. 180-181 (1999). Arcade Publishing.