DAR Sees Record Growth In New Members In 2013

Thursday, January 30, 2014
Dr. Daryl Black was the guest speaker at a meeting of the Moccasin Bend Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution.  Dr. Black's topic was Chattanooga History Center Today.  From left, Barbara Fickley, 1st vice regent, Dr. Black and Sara Maloney, regent.
Dr. Daryl Black was the guest speaker at a meeting of the Moccasin Bend Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution. Dr. Black's topic was Chattanooga History Center Today. From left, Barbara Fickley, 1st vice regent, Dr. Black and Sara Maloney, regent.

With the final 2013 membership statistics now collected, the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution recorded its most significant gain in new members in the history of the 123 year old organization. A record 13,906 new members were welcomed into the DAR in 2013.  The previous record was set more than 90 years ago in 1921 when 13,805 women were accepted into the organization in that year.

As of Jan. 1, the official DAR membership count for 2014 is 177,049, a net increase of 3,529 members from the official membership count from the beginning of 2013.

“We are extremely proud of this new membership milestone,” stated DAR President General Lynn Young. “The growing membership of the Daughters of the American Revolution represents our organization’s relevance in today’s ever-changing world as we continue to passionately honor our heritage, focus on the future and celebrate America.”

The highest DAR membership totals peaked around the time of the United States Bicentennial in the late 1970s and early 1980s but this was followed by a steady decrease for many years. Starting in 2007, however, the DAR has seen an increase in total membership each year and the past three years have all ranked in the top five for years with the most new members accepted into the DAR. In the past seven years since membership began increasing, the DAR has gained a total of more than 14,000 in net membership. 

Coinciding with our most recent gains in membership, seven years ago the Daughters of the American Revolution rolled out its Genealogical Resource System which is a free resource provided by the DAR to aid general research and to assist with the DAR membership process. The GRS is a collection of databases that provide access to the many materials amassed by the DAR since its founding in 1890. The GRS is the result of a multi-million dollar process launched by the organization to scan DAR genealogical resources and then use DAR member volunteers to go through and index and transcribe all of the old DAR applications, making them searchable online to the public.

Any woman 18 years or older who can prove lineal, bloodline descent from an ancestor who aided in achieving American independence is eligible to join the DAR. Each DAR applicant must provide genealogical research that documents her lineage back to an ancestor from the Revolutionary War era. The application and source documentation must provide proof of relation for each generation going back to the Patriot ancestor, as well documentation for the Revolutionary War service of her Patriot. The applications, supplemental applications and source documentation of the more than 920,000 women who have joined the DAR since its founding, provide genealogical information for the public and those women wishing to become DAR members. 

With genealogical resources more readily accessible through the GRS, as well as an increase in other online genealogical sources, many have found the process of collecting important historical documentation to prove lineage has become easier. As a result, the DAR membership application process has also become smoother. DAR Headquarters has also invested in updating workflows and imaging software making the internal application approval process more efficient.

Advancements in the DAR membership management software also allows DAR members to better track prospective members and assist them in the membership application process. Essentially, increased technology has empowered DAR members to be more efficient in recruiting new members. 

At the core, DAR is a grassroots organization with members primarily recruiting women on the local level. In addition to increased technology, the growth of DAR membership can be attributed to DAR chapters making an impact in their local communities, illustrating how DAR is a meaningful and relevant organization that today’s woman should want to join, said officials. Prospective members see that DAR members are making a difference in their communities, contributing to a combined three million hours of community service around the world in 2013 alone. Many women also recognize that joining DAR is a way for them to honor and preserve their family history, because when their DAR application is approved, all of the genealogical family history that is included with it is conserved by the DAR for all future generations.

Close to 35% percent of the DAR membership represents those women who have recently joined in the past seven years of growth and 46 percent of the membership is women who have been DAR members for 25 years or more. That mix of new members and long-time members provides a blend of fresh ideas and initiatives as well as rooted traditions and history, said officials. The Daughters of the American Revolution continues to grow and look to the future while celebrating America.

There are five local chapters: Chickamauga, Nancy Ward, Chief John Ross, Judge David Campbell and Moccasin Bend.

To learn more about the DAR Genealogical Research System, visit www.dar.org/grs

For more information about joining the Daughters of the American Revolution, visit www.dar.org/membership.



Chattanooga Funeral Home To Hold Candlelight Remembrance Services Dec. 2

Chattanooga Funeral Home will hold candlelight remembrance services on Saturday, Dec. 2.  A remembrance tree will be illuminated at 5 p.m. The Hamiton Memorial Gardens' service will be held at Chattanooga Funeral Home, North Chapel in Hixson.  Dr. David McNabb, executive director of Teen Challenge MidSouth will lead the service. The Chattanooga Memorial Park ... (click for more)

Chattanooga ModelCon 2018 Will Be Jan. 5-6

The Chattanooga Scale Modelers Association will host their seventh annual scale model convention on Friday and Saturday, Jan. 5-6, at the Chattanooga Trade and Convention Center.  It will be open from 2-6 p.m. on Jan. 5 for entries and then Jan. 6 from 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. with awards at 4 p.m.  Visitors can expect to see museum quality scale models grouped in categories ... (click for more)

Man, 21, Shot While Walking Along E. 19th Street

A 21-year-old man was shot Friday afternoon as he waked along E. 19th Street. The victim was identified as Quincy McConnell. Chattanooga Police officers responded to a local hospital on a report of a gunshot victim arriving for treatment. The victim arrived at the hospital via personal vehicle. He suffered a non-life threatening injury. The victim said he was ... (click for more)

$100,000 Powereball Winner In Greeneville

A Tennessee Lottery Powerball player in Greeneville woke up Thanksgiving morning a $100,000 winner.  The as-yet-unknown player matched 4 of 5 white balls drawn plus the Powerball in the Wednesday night drawing, which has a base prize of $50,000. Since he or she added the Power Play option for a dollar, the prize was multiplied by the Power Play number drawn, which was ... (click for more)

Stormwater Fiasco And East Ridge Camping

When did the Chattanooga City Council get replaced by members of the East Ridge City Council? I don't recall a time in Chattanooga where they've voted to shoot the city in the foot more than they have lately.  If this goes through despite the environmental impact warnings and then Camp Jordan has increased flooding after spending millions on sports ball fields, ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Saturday Funnies

The best story this Thanksgiving comes from the New Jersey Turnpike where a very attractive young woman ran out of gas last month. Kate McClure had little cash on her as she began to walk towards the closest gas station in the pitch-black dark. But she didn’t get far before a homeless man, his beard ragged and clothes filthy, told her this was a bad place for her to be.  ... (click for more)