He discovered the Secretary's ledger of Saint John's Lodge dating from June 24, 1731, to June, 1738 (see Transactionz, Quatuor Coronati Lodge, volume iii, page 134). The oldest preserved records date from the year 1769, and there is no lack of evidence as to the observance of the custom in Speculative Lodges during that century and later either in separate Lodges or under the wing of the Royal Arch.
Du Cange, Slossarzum, defines Macio, Mario, or Machio, on the authority of Isidore, as Maon, latomus, a mason, a constructor of walls, from machina, the machines on which they stood to work on account of the height of the walls. His favorite pen name was Cryptonymus, a Latin word meaning One whose name is hidden. The Mark continued to be worked in England as an unauthorized ceremony until the year 1856, when the Mark Grand Lodge was founded and has proved a conspicuous success, having ultimately secured the support of all the ' time immemorial ' and other Lodges in the country, besides having warranted several hundreds of Lodges to work the Degree in England and the Colonies and dependencies of the British Crown.
As a contributor to the literature and science of Freemasonry, Doctor Mackey's labors have been more extensive than those of any other in America or in Europe. In particular, a prominent Chapter has specially asked to be provided with a definite rule.
In 1845 he published his first Masonic work, entitled A Lexicon of Freemasonry; in 1851 he published his second work entitled Tame True Mystic Tie. In consequence the following Memorandum was submitted to Supreme Grand Committee for the purpose of information so that they might consider the subject and, if so advised, give an official ruling on the meaning of the Committee on Marks, and in the interval the Memorandum has been revised and corrected.
For many years he was Editor of the Reystone, a Masonic journal. The names of the apprentices were entered in another list, the Marks chosen by such being evidently similar to the fathers in several instances (see Marks of the Craft).