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National Society Sons of the American Revolution, Louisville

Welcome to the website of the Massachusetts Society — a state Society of the National Society of the Sons of the American Revolution. The society was formed on 19 April 1889 at a time when the county was celebrating the centennial of the signing of the Declaration of Independence. As part of that patriotic fervor, a group of men in the area of San Francisco, who were descendants of patriots involved in the American Revolution, created this institution. Their objective was to have a fraternal and civic society to salute those men and women who pledged their lives, fortunes and honor to battle for independence from Great Britain.

The society is a historical, educational, and patriotic non-profit that seeks to maintain and extend the institutions of American freedom, an appreciation for patriotism, a respect for our national symbols, and the value of American citizenship, We do this by perpetuating the stories of patriotism, courage, sacrifice, tragedy, and triumph of those who achieved our independence in the belief that these stories are universal ones of man's eternal struggle against tyranny. We strive to let these stories inspire and strengthen each succeeding generation as they too will be called upon to defend our freedoms on the battlefield and in our public institutions.

We also reward excellence and the achievement of men and women in our community. We reach out to public-school student and educators with yearly contest with cash rewards Also, we recognize Eagle Scouts, those that have served our country, and officers in training as future leaders. You will find information on these programs below throughout this website.

  • We provide recognition for public service to men and women jurists, cadets, and scouts as leaders in our communities.
  • We sponsor essay, oration, and contests for high school students and teachers on historical and patriotic themes with cash awards.
  • We inspire the community with the principles on which our nation was founded in public events.
  • We help people locate and evaluate the history of their family through our national library, a major repository of genealogical information.

Today the SAR consists of 40,000 members in over 500 chapters in the United States, Canada, France, Germany, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom. Over 210,000 descendants of the men and women patriots of the American Revolution have been admitted since our founding. Our members include fifteen presidents of the United States, Brigadier, Lieutenant and five star generals, presidents of several colleges and universities, ambassadors, and members of the Supreme Court, the U.S. Senate, and the U.S. Congress.

We hope that this website will answer many of your questions about the Society and its history. We also hope that the site will inspire you to join us at our events in person as a member or guest.

Membership Requirements

In 1876 there were many celebrations to commemorate the centennial of the signing of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776. As part of this fervor, a group of men in the San Francisco, California, area who were descendants of patriots involved in the American Revolution, formed an organization called the Sons of Revolutionary Sires. Out of the Sires grew the National Society of the Sons of the American Revolution, which was organized on April 30, 1889 - the 100th anniversary of the inauguration of George Washington as our nation's first President. The society was conceived as a fraternal and civic society composed of lineal descendants of those that supported the cause of American Independence. The National Society was chartered by an Act of the United States Congress on June 9, 1906.

Any man is eligible for membership in this Society who, being eighteen of age or over and a citizen of good repute in the community, is the lineal descendant of an ancestor who was at all times unfailing in loyalty to and rendered active service in, the cause of American independence, either as an officer, soldier, seaman, marine, militiaman or Minuteman, in the armed forces of the Continental Congress, or of any one of the several Colonies or States; or as a Signer of the Declaration of Independence, or as a member of a Committee of Safety or Correspondence; or as a member of any Continental, Provincial, or Colonial Congress or Legislature; or as a recognized patriot who performed actual service by overt acts of resistance to the authority of Great Britain.

We regret that no preliminary decision can be given on a line of descent, service or the value of proposed evidence. When examined during the application process, a preliminary decision might prove to be incorrect. The National Society accepts no responsibility for such errors.

Yearly Events

Our state society celebrates four events each year for members and guests - our Annual Meeting in February, our Patriot's Day celebration in April, a Summer Picnic in August, and the Yorktown Celebration in October. Additional events are held by our chapters throughout the year.

Annual Meeting

Our day-long Annual Meeting each February sets the direction for the organization through an election of state officers, confirmation of our yearly calendar, and recognitions for outstanding work of the year. It is a forum for all members from across the state to meet each other and to see what is happening in our organization. Everyone comes to appreciate the many efforts of our society as assembled and reviewed in presentations throughout the day.

Each year we have an exceptional speaker on an aspect of Colonial America. Speakers often address important moments in the history and look inside the head of some of America’s most important leaders at a pivotal point of American politics.

Patriots Day Weekend

Our celebration on Patriot's Day on the third Monday in April begins with the grand parade in Concord with the President General of our National Society. Our Color Guard begins the day by mustering in front of the Colonial Inn to mark patriot's grave with a memorial service at 7:30 a.m. The parade steps off with the President General's carriage at 9:00 a.m. All members of the society are welcome to march with us in the parade in uniform or coat and tie.

The weekend includes a reception and banquet for the President General at the inn. As a part of the gathering, we award the winners of our annual essay and oration contests for youth as well as the winner of our eagle scout scholarship for the year. The banquet closes with a recitation of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's poem "Paul Revere's Ride" by a descendant of Paul Revere.

Victory of Yorktown Celebration

The Battle of Yorktown in 1781 was a decisive victory by combined assault of American forces led by General George Washington and French forces led by General Comte de Rochambeau over a British Army commanded by General Lord Cornwallis. It proved to be the last major land battle of the American Revolutionary War.

Each year in October the society gathers at a historic site within the state as selected by the officers of the chapters with our Board of Managers. As with our event for Patriot's day, this celebration begins with the marking of a patriot's grave and proceeds with a guided tour of the site, a banquet, and lecture. Celebrations have occurred at Historic Deerfield, Plymouth Plantation, the Museum of our National Heritage, and Sturbridge Village.

Family Summer Picnic

Sandwiched between the end of summer vacations and the start of the fall, our summer picnic is a great way to get outdoors with fellow members and their families. It is a day set aside to celebrate our member's contribution and provide a renewed sense of purpose and meaning. Simple conversations help others respect each member's participation in the organization. A picnic brings everyone together, making it a great time to make announcements and plans for the year to come.

Massachusetts Society, Post Office Box 890235, Weymouth, MA 02189-0004, (508) 229-1776
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