History and Origin of the Order
The Grand Council of the Allied Masonic Degrees was formed in 1879 to bring under its direction all lodges of various orders who recognised no central authority and were not regulated by the other major governing bodies.
Initially the degrees of Grand High Priest, St Lawrence the Martyr, The Red Cross of Babylon and Knights of Constantinople placed themselves under the control of this body and by 1897 the degrees of Grand Tilers of Solomon, one degree of the Secret Monitor and the order of Holy Wisdom (Knight Templar Priest grades) had also been included.
Eventually, however, in 1923 a Grand College of Holy Royal Arch Knight Templar Priests for England was erected at Newcastle and the Grand Council accordingly disclaimed control of this large group of degrees. Following this in 1931 the Grand Council of Allied Masonic Degrees agreed to cease working their single degree of the Secret Monitor and so today private Councils of the Order are empowered to work the degrees of :
St Lawrence the Martyr
Knight of Constantinople
Grand Tilers of Solomon
Red Cross of Babylon
Grand High Priest
In 1972 the title of this body was changed to the Grand Council of the Order of the Allied Masonic Degrees and today there are in excess of 200 Councils ranged under its banner.
Structure and Qualification
In a Council of Allied Masonic Degrees we find that the office structure varies from degree to degree. The degree of St Lawrence the Martyr is that in which all administrative work is carried out, candidates are admitted to the Order and the Installation of the Worshipful Master takes place.