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How Freemasonry Started:   Here is the answer from the United Grand Lodge of England, the oldest Grand Lodge of Freemasons in the world.

The Origins of Freemasonry through Lodge Histories from the Grand Lodge of Scotland:  "The roots of modern Freemasonry are firmly planted in Scotland!" "Scottish Freemasonry is now officially recognised as being the oldest in the world and is now recorded as a Guinness World Record." Record ID Number 54752.

The Definition of "Freemason":   The historical dictionary definition of "Freemason" may help.

The History of Freemasonry:   Here is what the Grand Lodge of Ancient Free Masons of South Carolina has to say on the subject.

Read THE HISTORY OF FREEMASONRY Online! P-S Review of Freemasonry

South Carolina Freemasonry Since 1735 - Link to the Grand Lodge of Ancient Free Masons in South Carolina