Local NSDAR conducts monthly meeting

Special to the Daily News

March 14, 2014

The Maj. George Gibson Chapter NSDAR met Feb. 22 at the Lee County Historical and Genealogical Society in Jonesville, Va.

Regent Nancy Britton called the meeting to order and welcomed everyone. She began the DAR Ritual, followed by customary responses from Chaplain Manerva Watson and members.

Judy Hounshell led the Pledge of Allegiance. Dolores Ham began the American’s Creed. Rebecca (Becky) Jones started the Preamble to the Constitution.

Charlotte Brooks led the singing of the National Anthem. Regent Britton gave the Flag Quote.

Past Regent Linda Lawson presented the Community Service Award to Judy Davidson. Davidson was selected by chapter members for her many voluntary activities, one of which is secretary for the Lee County Historical and Genealogical Society where she is actively working on the second pictorial book. Britton expressed appreciation to Davidson for her many services to the community.

Watson based devotion on “Good News Bearers.” She read a short inspirational story about what pleasant words can do and how positive attitudes can be catching. The scripture was Genesis 1:31. The parting thought was “Are you feeling down and out? It’s been said that ‘attitude’ determines ‘altitude,’ so think positive thoughts, speak encouraging words, and in no time you will be flying high and lifting others up with you.”

Agnes Marcum read from the January/February 2014 issue of the DAR magazine, American Spirit. The President General noted this April marks the 450th anniversary of William Shakespeare’s birthday, as well as the 400th anniversary of the marriage of Jamestown settler John Rolfe and Pocahontas. Surprising connections between Shakespeare and these Colonial Virginia settlers have been uncovered, particularly in the inspiration of the great playwright’s late-in-life work.

Joy Burchett’s National Defense report came from the March 2014 DAR online publication National Defender. Burchett read how military registries serve as an invaluable tool for the historian, the genealogist and the public. They safeguard America’s military history and provide greater understanding of the price of freedom. Among military registries are the Veterans History Project, the Women in Military Service for America Memorial, and the National World War II Memorial’s Registry of Remembrances, a searchable registry consisting of four databases. In addition, the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) offer a variety of searchable online military databases.

Fay Ramsey presented the Flag Minute by describing the correct conduct during the National Anthem. When the flag is displayed, all persons present, except those in uniform, should stand at attention facing the flag with their right hand over their heart. Men not in uniform should remove their headdress with their right hand and hold it to their left shoulder, their hand being over their heart. Persons in uniform should render the military salute at the first note of the anthem and retain this position until the last note. When the flag is not displayed, those present should face toward the music and act in the same manner as if the flag were displayed.

For the Conservation Minute, Britton stated that Lee County Schools will accept plastic bags for recycling through April. The chapter has turned in more than a thousand bags in the last month.

The Sunshine Minute included the February and March birthdays. The only February birthday was that of Dolores Ham on Feb. 22. The group sang happy birthday . The March birthdays are Myra Brooks Carter (junior member), Judy Hansard, and Britton.

Ham read an interesting 1954 letter from a Minnesota DAR member to Ellen Click, a teacher and community worker in the Mulberry Gap area of Hancock County, Tenn. Ham has inherited hundreds of letters written in response to Click’s requests for assistance in serving her community. She and other relatives hope to make the letters into a book reflecting Click’s life of service.

Jones showed a beautiful buttermilk pitcher for the American Heritage Minute. This pitcher was passed down from her great grandmother, Rebecca Fulton Robinson, born in 1822. Jones plans to pass the pitcher to her youngest granddaughter, also named Rebecca.

Britton reported that Fay Ramsey is now a 10-year DAR member, Kila Gregory and Georgia Chadwell are 20-year members, and Shirley Crouse is a 30-year member. She reminded volunteers to keep entering their hours on the DAR website.

March is Women’s History Month with the theme “Celebrating Women of Character, Courage, and Commitment.”

The chapter welcomed new associate member, Mary Frances Sprinkle, a niece of Becky Jones. Sprinkle is a member of Virginia’s Natural Bridge Chapter, as is Jones.

Marcum presented a two-part program, the first on President George Washington.

For the second part of her program, Marcum told about the Presidential Seal and the Great Seal or National Seal. The person who designed these seals was Charles Thompson. The first design was an American eagle on the wing and rising.

Thompson placed the olive branch in the eagle’s right talon to symbolize peace; in the left talon, the eagle holds a bundle of 13 arrows to represent the power of the peace symbol. The stance of the eagle was later changed to the more traditional symbol we see today with upward wing tips and vertical stripes.

Marcum stated the bald eagle was adopted as the official bird emblem of the United States in 1782. It was chosen because of its majestic beauty, great strength and long life, and because it is only found on the North American Continent.

Britton said the next regular chapter meeting will be March 15, prior to the 118th Virginia State Conference to be held March 27-30 in Roanoke, Va.

The meeting was adjourned. The group enjoyed refreshments provided by Jones.