Famous Freemasons From History!

A Letter from Arthur Conan Doyle

March 31, 2023

Greetings Brother, 

I have received your request for a short biography of my life up until this point. I am sorry that it has taken me so long to send you such information, however I wanted to make sure I included only pertinent information. I would like to come off interesting to the brothers who may not know me. Let me begin by formally introducing myself, my name is Arthur Ignatius Conan Doyle, and I am a brother mason from Phoenix Lodge No.257 in Portsmouth, Hampshire County, England. 

I was born on May 22, 1859 in Edinburgh, Scotland, where I spent my youth up until I became nine years of age. It was at the time of my ninth birthday that my mother and father resolved to send me to Hodder Place Boarding School in England. While the school did wonders for my education, I loathed the institution. I could bore you with all the particulars the school, but to put it bluntly, the school simply was not fun. I took most of my enjoyment at the time from writing my dear mother back home, and telling stories to my fellow classmates. How I loved storytelling, making up fantastic fantasies was incredibly amusing. 

I graduated the Boarding School in 1876 at the age of seventeen, Upon my graduation, I decided to enroll at the University of Edinburgh, where I pursued a medical education. In the year 1880 I decided to take a short break from my studies, and joined a whaling vessel that was setting sail for the Arctic Circle. While I found the practice of whaling to be grotesque, the camaraderie aboard the ship was wonderful. I returned to University in the later half of 1880, and within a year I had graduated with my Bachelor of Medicine, and Master of Surgery Degrees. 

Upon my graduation, I found employment aboard the “Mayumba,” an old vessel that navigated between Liverpool and the west coast of Africa. While I enjoyed my time on the ship, Africa was far less enjoyable than the Arctic. Upon returning to England I worked in Plymouth for a short time, under the guidance of another doctor. I found his company to be less than pleasant, so shortly after joining him I left to open my own practice. I very much enjoyed working for myself, however my practice had a rocky start. It took nearly three years of hard work for my income to become steady. Over the next few years I dedicated my time between medicine, and writing. 

In August, 1885, I wedded a lovely young women by the name of Louisa Hawkins; a gentle and amiable women whom I loved very much. In 1888, one of my first major pieces of literature was published. You may know it as “A Study in Scarlet” the first appearance of the clever Sherlock Holmes! Mr. Holmes and Dr. Watson received a second publication in 1890, their success is a feat I am particularly proud of. 

My first child, Mary Louise, was born into this world in January 1889. Her brother, Arthur Kingsley, followed shortly after in November 1892. In the year 1893 I made the decision to join Freemasonry, the fraternity that has brought us together. I was raised into Phoenix Lodge No. 257 in Portsmouth. The fraternity has always been something I’ve enjoyed, and I hope you get as much out of it as I have. 

As much as I enjoy regaling the stories of my adventures, I must unfortunately conclude this letter. I must prepare for my journey to Egypt, which I am departing for soon. My lovely Louisa was recently diagnosed with Tuberculosis, and I sincerely hope that the warm climate will do wonders for her health. 

Until next time my Brother. Stay safe. 



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