WASHINGTON, D.C. - The National Society Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) is truly honored to celebrate the life, the talent and the legacy of world-renowned soprano Marian Anderson on this 70th anniversary of her historic concert on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial.
On April 12, 2009, the DAR will join with the Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission and others in paying tribute to Marian Anderson and the momentous 1939 event in a concert at the Lincoln Memorial. The concert will take place at 3:00 p.m. and features musical performances by Denyce Graves, Sweet Honey in the Rock and the Chicago Children’s Choir. The concert will conclude with a naturalization ceremony. DAR is delighted to be hosting a reception at its National Headquarters for those involved with the tribute concert and the newly naturalized citizens. We thank the Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission for allowing us the opportunity to join in the celebration of this important event.
The DAR deeply regrets that Marian Anderson was not given the opportunity to perform her 1939 Easter concert in Constitution Hall because of her race. Today, however, we join with all Americans in paying tribute to her memory and commemorating such a pivotal event in the struggle for racial equality.
DAR welcomed Marian Anderson to Constitution Hall on a number of occasions soon after 1939, including a benefit concert for war relief in 1943. It is also meaningful to us that Ms. Anderson chose Constitution Hall as the place to launch her farewell American tour in 1964. The DAR presented Ms. Anderson with the DAR Centennial Medallion in 1992 which recognizes women who gave outstanding service to the nation. In 2005, DAR was privileged to host the dedication ceremony of the Marian Anderson commemorative stamp at the invitation of the United States Postal Service and Ms. Anderson’s family.
Today, Constitution Hall is a venue used by numerous, diverse groups who bring major entertainment to Washington, D.C. DAR enthusiastically welcomes all women into membership who can trace their lineage to someone who contributed to American Independence, and encourages and celebrates diversity, not only in the organization, but also in our country.
For more information on the DAR and Marian Anderson, please visit the DAR public Web site at www.dar.org/mariananderson.
The National Society Daughters of the American Revolution was founded in 1890 to promote historic preservation, education and patriotism. Any woman 18 years or older, regardless of race, religion, or ethnic background, who can prove lineal descent from a patriot of the American Revolution is eligible for membership. With more than 165,000 members in approximately 3,000 chapters worldwide, DAR is one of the world's largest and most active service organizations. Encompassing an entire downtown city block, DAR National Headquarters houses one of the nation’s premier genealogical libraries, one of the foremost collections of pre-industrial American decorative arts, Washington, D.C.’s largest concert hall, and an extensive collection of early American manuscripts and imprints. DAR Headquarters is located at 1776 D Street NW, Washington, D.C. and is open to the public Monday – Friday 8:30 a.m. – 4:00 pm and Saturday 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. To learn more about the work of today's DAR, visit www.dar.org.