Weems, Mason Locke (1759-1825)

American clergyman and author.

Visited France and secured a letter of introduction to Franklin from Jonathan Williams, Jr. Traveled to England for Episcopal ordination (c. 1783), discovered to his chagrin that candidates were required to take a loyalty oath, and consulted Franklin and John Adams for advice. Ordained shortly after this requirement was removed (September 1784). Pastor of All Hallows (1784-89) and St. Margaret’s (1791-92) parishes, Maryland. Later became an itinerant bookseller for Philadelphia publisher Matthew Carey. Wrote several moral tracts and biographies, including A History of the Life and Death, Virtues and Exploits of General George Washington (1800) and an unremarkable Life of Doctor Benjamin Franklin (1815).

Son of David and Esther (Hill) Weems of Anne Arundel County, Maryland. Educated in London and Edinburgh. Married Frances Ewell (1795) and settled in Dumfries, Virginia. Ten children.