Eight different presentations on Genealogy topics and a lunch-time talk by published author Laura Lyster-Mensh. Presenters include, notably, past President General Joe Dooley (who was Genealogist General 2009-2011), and Virginia Assistant Registrar Dave Thomas. We have door prizes from Family Tree DNA, Ancestry.com, and Family Tree Maker (yes, they are still alive). A light breakfast and a hot lunch are free to those who reserve a slot by November 1st. All at no cost to you!
Bring a prospective member and get them started on their application.
report submitted by Col. George Waller Chapter President Bob Vogler
Under the supervision of LTC David King, a member of the Col. George Waller Chapter in Martinsville, Cadets of the Trojan Battalion Army Junior ROTC program at Tunstall High School (Pittsylvania County) with the assistance of the Martinsville Exchange Club recently replaced the Freedom Shrine, which has been missing since the school renovation began in 2009. The Freedom Shrine is a collection of over thirty facsimiles of key documents from the history of the United States
Mr. David Bandy, the Tech instructor at Tunstall, installed plywood backs for the plaques and an outline of the Liberty Bell for the Exchange Club sign and the Shrine has been mounted in the JROTC/ English wing of Tunstall High School. Mrs. Adrian Nester’s Advanced Placement English writing classes were the first classes to use the shrine for their study of key documents. “Citizenship in American History and Government” is a key component of the Army Junior ROTC curriculum and the study of these documents is an important part of the Junior ROTC mission “to motivate young people to be better citizens.” The Freedom Shrine is once again readily available for use by all the students at Tunstall High School.
22 Oct 2016 Gloucester County, VA
report submitted by President Ed Truslow
On Saturday October 22nd Gloucester County, the Gloucester Historical Society and the local Battle of the Hook Committee dedicated a roadside marker in the area of the 1781 Battle of the Hook. This battle was critical in hastening the British surrender across the river in Yorktown. The battle effectively halted British food foraging in Gloucester County and the rest the Middle Peninsula as well as closing off their only escape route out of Yorktown. VASSAR participants in the ceremony were VASSAR President Ed Truslow who brought greetings on behalf of the Virginia SAR, Williamsburg SAR President Harley Stewart and Virginia SAR Color Guardsmen Chris Melhuish and Jeff Brown. Ed in a personal note mentioned that his 4th great grandfather Benjamin Truslow was with General Weedon's militia at the battle.
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There will be copies for sale at Great Bridge on December 3rd
Great gifts for your speakers at chapter meetings
19 Oct 2016 Yorktown, VA
Yorktown Victory Day began with the annual wreath laying at the tomb of Thomas Nelson, Jr., who signed the Declaration of Independence, served as a general of Virginia Militia, and was a governor of Virginia during the revolution. President General Mike Tomme represented the SAR, President Ed Truslow represented the Virginia SAR, and 1st Vice President Mike Elston was the master of ceremonies. Virginia SAR Chaplain Gene Thomas offered the invocation and benediction; and Virginia SAR Color Guard Commander Darrin Schmidt commanded the Color Guard. Six SAR state societies and 14 Virginia SAR chapters participated in the ceremony and marched in the parade. Participating Virginia chapters included: Col. Fielding Lewis, Col James Wood II, Culpeper Minutemen, Col. William Grayson, Fairfax Resolves, Fort Harrison, George Mason, George Washington, Norfolk, Richard Henry Lee, Richmond, Thomas Jefferson, Thomas Nelson, Jr., and Williamsburg.
As the wreath presenters were called forward by Master of Ceremonies Mike Elston, Color Guard Commander Darrin Schmidt accepted and placed the wreaths.
Immediately after the wreath laying ceremony, approximately 40 compatriots, led by President General Mike Tomme and Virginia SAR President Ed Truslow, and supported by members of the C.A.R., mustered for the parade. They mustered on Church Street, then marched to Main Street, five blocks down Main Street and past the reviewing stand, the fell out into the field on Zweybrucken Street for photos.
The Virginia SAR Congress Planning Committee and the National Congress Planning Committee visited five hotels in Norfolk and Richmond over three days, October 17-19. One of these hotels will be selected as the site for the 2020 Congress. Those making the visits included National Congress Planning Chairman Paul Callanan and his wife Keitha, SAR Executive Director Don Shaw, Virginia Congress Planning Chair Mark Brennan, President General Mike Tomme, past President General Lindsay Brock, Virginia President Ed Truslow and his wife Laura, 3rd Vice President Tom Whetstone, Secretary Wayne Rouse and his wife Wink, Bill Schwetke and his wife Cat, and Mrs. Julia Crider of Helms Briscoe.
The hotels visited included Norfolk Waterside Marriott, the Hilton Norfolk The Main (still under construction), the Sheraton Norfolk Waterside, the Hilton Richmond Downtown, and the Richmond Marriott. The group also visited the St. Paul's Church in Norfolk and the Richmond Convention Center.
The National and Virginia groups will independently rank order the hotels, and if they agree on their first choices, negotiations will begin with that hotel for the 2020 Congress. If the two groups do not agree, the SAR Executive Committee will decide.
9 Oct 2016 Point Pleasant, WV
This past weekend was Battle Days at Point Pleasant, WV, were the victory of the Virginia Militia under Andrew Lewis over Indians under Chief Cornstock was celebrated. This was the major battle of "Dunmore's War".
Saturday events included a parade in the morning, then in the evening was the Governor's Banquet, followed by the Governor's Ball. Sunday began with a Colonial Church Service, followed by the presentation of memorial wreaths. At the wreath presentations the memorial address was delivered by Lt. Col. Rusty McGuire, commander of the 116th Infantry Brigade Combat Team of the Virginia National Guard, descended from the Virginia Militia which fought at Point Pleasant.
The Virginia SAR was represented by four compatriots and three wives: President Ed Truslow and his wife Laura; 2nd Vice President Pat Kelly and his wife Jennifer; Peter Davenport; and Bill Schwetke and his wife Cat. Pat Kelly, Peter Davenport, and Bill Schwetke participated in the color guard. President Ed Truslow presented the Virginia Society wreath at the memorial service.
report from 1st Vice President Mike Elston
On October 8, 2016, the Virginia SAR presented the Gold Good Citizenship Medal posthumously to Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia. Lt. Col. Matthew Scalia and his wife, Michelle, attended the October meeting of the George Washington Chapter and accepted the medal on behalf of the Scalia family. The Gold Good Citizenship Medal is presented for outstanding and unusual patriotic achievement and service of national importance. Past recipients of the medal include former Presidents Truman, Ford, Carter, Reagan and Bush. More recently, the Virginia SAR has presented the medal to Secretary of Veterans Affairs General Eric Shinseki, two former Chairmen of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (General Peter Pace and General Richard Meyers), former Attorney General Edwin Meese, and General Frederick Kroesen Jr., former commander, U.S. Army, Europe, and Army Vice Chief of Staff. Thank you to the GW Chapter for hosting this event!
7 Oct 2016 Kings Mountain National Military Park, SC
The SAR Color Guard at Kings Mountain. Virginia participants are in the front row, 2nd from right - Bill Schwetke; fourth from the right - Peter Davenport; fifth from the right - Pat Kelly. Mostly hidden in the back row, over the left shoulder of the seventh man from the right in the front row, is Mike Elston.
Despite rain, heavy at times, the SAR celebrated the 236th Anniversary of the patriots' victory at Kings Mountain in South Carolina. Fortunately for the attendees, the National Park Service set up tents for protection from the rain. The Virginia SAR attendees included 1st Vice President Mike Elston, 2nd Vice President Pat Kelly, Surgeon Kirk Sheap and his wife Norma, Trustee Reverdy Wright, Peter Davenport, and Bill Schwetke. Elston, Kelly, Davenport, and Schwetke participated in the color guard.
7 Oct 2016 Kings Mountain National Military Park, SC
Today the DAR dedicated a marker to three African American patriots that fought at Kings Mountain. The patriots were:
After greetings from the various organizations in attendance, and the keynote address by B/G James R. Gorham, North Carolina National Guard (retired), the patriots' descendants unveiled the marker.
Treasurer General Warren Alter represented the SAR. The Virginia SAR attendees included 1st Vice President Mike Elston, 2nd Vice President Pat Kelly, Surgeon Kirk Sheap and his wife Norma, Trustee Reverdy Wright, Peter Davenport, and Bill Schwetke. Elston, Kelly, Davenport, and Schwetke participated in the color guard.