The Center for Historical Studies of Spanish Masonry (CEHME) is a university association of research outside of Freemasonry, composed of university and secondary school teachers and researchers interested in the study of Spanish Masonry as a historical phenomenon in its many aspects: social , political, cultural, religious, educational, legal, ideological, artistic, musical, literary, linguistic, initiatory, biographical, etc.
As stated in the third article of the Statutes of the Center for Historical Studies of Spanish Masonry, the purposes of the CEHME are:
a) Promote and intensify scientific development and dissemination of historical studies of Freemasonry.
b) Prepare joint research plans on topics related to Freemasonry. Organize congresses and meetings of any order that contribute to a greater exchange and development of these studies. Strengthen cooperation among researchers of such studies on firm foundations.
c) Collaborate also with all national and foreign entities that deal with these studies.
And in the fifth article of the Statutes it is established that the CEHME will promote the periodic celebration of Congresses and Colloquiums on the History of Spanish Masonry.
The studies on the history of Freemasonry that have been carried out in Spain from the Center of Historical Studies of Spanish Masonry (CEHME) have a triple characteristic that, to a large extent, differentiates them from similar ones made in France, Germany, Portugal, England , Belgium, Italy, Austria, etc.
The first is that they are made from the University, through the Center for Historical Studies of Spanish Masonry (CEHME) with academic circumstances of objective and serene research, free of attacks or propaganda, regardless of sterile polemics or false protagonisms of eras past.
The second characteristic is that they are made from outside Freemasonry, by university professors and postgraduates mostly non-masons only taken to the study of Freemasonry for its university vocation of search for historical truth that can clarify so many social, political, cultural aspects and ideological of an institution whose past could not be ignored, much less belittle or ridicule. Freemasonry is one more piece within the complex historical gear that from its sociability or from its personalist individualisms could clarify aspects or simply destroy prejudices and falsehoods. There was no need to discard it within a concept of total history.
The third characteristic is that in Spain we have one of the best and most complete European Archives of Masonry, which is part of the Documentary Center of Historical Memory, based in Salamanca.
STUDY AND ANALYSIS OF FREEMASONRY IN SPAIN
The study of Spanish Freemasonry also extends to those Freemasons that once depended on Spanish Freemasonry, such as Cuba, Puerto Rico, the Philippines, the United States, Morocco, Turkey, etc.
The Center for Historical Studies of Spanish Masonry (CEHME), founded in 1983 and headquartered at the University of Zaragoza, has its own legal status as a research association of a national scope and a non-profit character, as ordered by the Ministry of the Interior on 14 May 1984 and registration number of Associations 55,173.
The Center for Historical Studies of Spanish Masonry (CEHME) is currently composed of more than 90 professors from 25 Spanish and 10 foreign universities, as well as outstanding secondary school teachers and researchers, both national and foreign. The CEHME is composed of numerary, adhered, corresponding, protective and honorary members. It is governed by a Board of Directors of ten members elected by the General Assembly.
Faithful to these principles, and with a biannual periodicity at the beginning and three years from 1997, twelve International symposiums have already been held, each of them under a monographic theme, namely:
• 1983 in Zaragoza: Freemasonry in the History of Spain
• 1985 in Salamanca: Freemasonry in nineteenth-century Spain
• 1987 in Córdoba: Freemasonry, politics and society
• 1989 in Alicante: Freemasonry, revolution and reaction
• 1991 in Cáceres: Spanish Masonry and America
• 1993 in Zaragoza: Spanish Masonry between Europe and America
• 1995 in Toledo: Freemasonry in twentieth-century Spain
• 1997 in Barcelona: Spanish Masonry and the crisis of 98
• 2000 in Segovia: Spanish Masonry in 2000. A historical review
• 2003 in Leganés: Freemasonry in Madrid and Spain from the 18th to the 21st century
• 2006 in Logroño: Masonry at the time of Sagasta
• 2009 in Almería: Exile; the liberal and republican exiles.
• 2012 in Gibraltar: Gibraltar, Cádiz, America and Freemasonry. Constitutionalism and Freedom of the Press, 1812-2012
• 2015 in Gijón: Spanish-Portuguese Freemasonry. From absolutism to democracies (1815-2015)
• 2018 in Lisbon: Freemasonry: myth and history, in the III centenary of the founding of modern Freemasonry
The Proceedings of these symposiums are already a collection of several volumes that constitute an important, novel and recognized contribution to the history of Spain, in which representatives of 35 national universities have intervened, the contribution made from 25 other universities abroad by professors from Italy, Portugal, France, Belgium, Austria, United Kingdom, Israel, Mexico, Cuba, Haiti, Costa Rica, Uruguay, Chile, Argentina, Brazil, etc.
A volume dedicated exclusively to the onomastic, geographic, thematic and lodge indices has also been published, as well as that of all the participants and their works from the first eleven symposiums.
The CEHME, through its members or other institutions and universities, has published more than 200 books that correspond not only to local, regional or national histories of Spanish Freemasonry, but also to other sectoral studies, such as the press, pacifism, education, international relations, the Church, religion, enlightenment, freethinking, repression … all of them linked exclusively to Freemasonry. To these books should be added the monographic numbers of different journals of History that in these years have dedicated special issues to the subject with the close and direct collaboration of CEHME members.
No less important is the fact that we have acted in parallel in different university journals of historical research, or simply cultural, as well as in collective works, conference proceedings, seminars, tributes, etc.
The final result is more than 1000 articles, monographs and works published on different aspects of Freemasonry in these years by the members of the CEHME.
The CEHME publishes since 1986 an annual Information Bulletin of the activities of the Center and its members: publications, congresses, conferences, seminars, doctoral theses, exhibitions, etc.
In Spain, the CEHME, as an integration of the masonic fact in the sciences of man, has made the University, through the members of the CEHME, interested in the history of Freemasonry as one of the integrating aspects of social history , political, cultural, mentalities and thinking.
With this spirit and scientific rigor, CEHME researchers have been able to address a topic, the history of Freemasonry, which until not many years ago had been not only divorced from general history, but surrounded by ghosts, polemics and attacks of low value historical. This has allowed that, on the initiative of CEHME, Freemasonry is being researched in all Spanish universities. The result of these studies have been the numerous doctoral theses on the history of Freemasonry that have been defended in recent years.