For more than a century, the members of the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution have dedicated themselves to historical preservation, promotion of education, and encouragement of patriotic endeavor. These goals are as relevant in today's society as they were when the organization was founded in 1890.
Most of DAR's volunteer work is accomplished under a committee system comprised of a national chairman appointed by the President General and locally appointed state and chapter chairmen. The national chairmen direct and supervise the activities of their committees with the assistance of the national vice chairmen. To learn more about the work of the DAR please read on.
Commemoratives and Memorials
- World War II Memorial, Washington, D.C.: DAR contributed more than $500,000 toward the construction of the new memorial on the Mall.
- Women in Military Service Memorial, Arlington, Va.: Conceived by DAR member, General Wilma Vaught, and funded in part by contributions from DAR, this memorial honors all women who have served in the military.
- United States Capitol Building, Washington, D.C.: Permanent works of art were commissioned by DAR to adorn the walls and ceilings within the Capitol Building. The project, titled "A Bicentennial Tribute to the United States of America," consists of 16 murals, 32 vignettes, and 16 medallion portraits depicting historic events in U.S. history.
- Monuments: People and events throughout America's history have been marked by DAR with monuments of all sizes, including a monument to George Washington's mother, statues of Washington and Lafayette donated to the people of France, and a monument to the martyrs of a British prison ship.
- Trail Monuments: To commemorate the sacrifices of the pioneer women who blazed the trails to the West, DAR marked 12 sites across the country with a series of Madonna of the Trail monuments. Various other important routes have been identified and marked including the Santa Fe Trail, the Natchez Trace, the California Trail, the Washington-Rochambeau Route, and the Oregon Trail.
- Valley Forge Memorial Bell Tower, Valley Forge, Pa.: DAR erected a memorial bell tower at the Washington Memorial Chapel in the heart of the Valley Forge National Park. The tower houses a carillon of 80 bells. Dedications and memorial plaques honoring America's military cover the interior of the tower.
- Independence Hall, Philadelphia, Pa.: DAR contributed $200,000 to the restoration of this historic site. The furnishings for the Governor's Council Chamber and the Committee of the Assembly's Room on the second floor are authentic 18 century pieces. In addition, DAR established the Rose Garden at Independence Hall
- Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, New York, N.Y.: DAR gave in excess of $750,000 to the restoration of these symbols of freedom.
- Historic Homes and other Revolutionary-Era Sites: Across the country, DAR members contribute their time and money to restore hundreds of historic locations. In addition to National Society projects, many state organizations and local chapters own and maintain local historical sites.
- DAR Forests: DAR raised thousands of dollars to assist in the re-forestation project of the U.S. Forestry Service during the 1940s.
- Cemeteries and Grave Sites: DAR members locate, restore, and mark thousands of patriot gravesites and headstones throughout the United States.
- Project Patriot: DAR Project Patriot is the official Daughters of the American Revolution committee that supports America’s service personnel in current conflicts abroad. The National Committee currently assists the Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Landstuhl, Germany.
- Flag and Flag Codes: DAR provides thousands of American flags to schools, governmental bodies, military establishments, and civic organizations throughout the country. A booklet, "Flag Code of the United States of America," is published by DAR and distributed free to schools and organizations.
- DAR Manual for Citizenship: In 1921, DAR compiled and published this guide distributed to American immigrants at Ellis Island and other ports of entry. To date, more than 10 million manuals have been distributed.
- Naturalization Ceremonies: From San Francisco to New York, DAR chapters participate in naturalization ceremonies for new citizens, providing flags, leaflets, manuals, and moral support.
- Constitution Week: DAR sponsors special programs and public service announcements during the week of September 17-23 to help inform and educate the public about this document which is fundamental to our society.
Service to Veterans
- The DAR Hospital Corps certified 1,081 trained nurses for service during the Spanish-American War. DAR later funded pensions for many of these nurses who did not qualify for government pensions.
- DAR members volunteer their time to provide assistance to veterans in both VA hospitals and non-VA facilities and provide more than 55,000 hours of volunteer time to veterans annually.
- The National Society DAR is one of the largest groups to serve on the Veterans Affairs Voluntary Service (VAVS) National Advisory Board and Executive Committee.
- DAR is proud to be a founding partner of the Veterans History Project of the Library of Congress.
- DAR presents two prestigious awards to American citizens for outstanding contributions to the nation. The DAR Medal of Honor is awarded to native-born American citizens and the Americanism Medal is awarded to naturalized citizens.
- Each year awards are given during the DAR annual meeting to honor those working with veterans. They are:
- Outstanding Veteran-Patient
- Outstanding Youth Volunteer
- Outstanding VAVS DAR Member
- Outstanding DAR Volunteer in Extended Areas
- Community Service Awards are presented on local, state, and national levels to individuals and groups who have contributed to their communities in an outstanding voluntary, heroic, civil, or benevolent manner, or who have participated in or organized community activities.
- DAR Good Citizens Awards are given outstanding high school seniors for their contributions to their communities and schools.
- DAR Good Citizenship Medals are presented to children in grades 5-11 who are dedicated to honor, service, courage, leadership, and patriotism.
- ROTC Medals are awarded to student cadets of outstanding ability and achievement in high school or college ROTC programs.
Over $1 million is given annually by the DAR to support six schools founded to provide educational opportunities that would otherwise be unavailable to the populations they serve. The DAR Schools provide a variety of special needs programs that address problems such as Attention Deficit Disorder, Dyslexia, adult literacy, and children in family crisis.
- Kate Duncan Smith DAR School, Inc.
Grant, Alabama (est. 1924)
Serves 1,100 impoverished children in the Appalachian Mountain area with schooling, extra-curricular activities, clothing, health care, daily nutrition through a free breakfast and lunch program, and training in life skills through a home economics practice cottage.
- Tamassee DAR School, Inc.
Tamassee, South Carolina (est.1919)
Provides a refuge from abuse and neglect for children from an isolated mountain area of northwestern South Carolina by providing a home-like atmosphere, tutorial assistance, and training in life skills needed for success in adulthood.
- Crossnore School
Crossnore, North Carolina (est. 1913)
Provides a safe, stable, healing, living and learning environment in a residential group setting for children from families in crisis. Crossnore School specializes in serving abused, abandoned and neglected children from the piedmont and mountain counties of North Carolina
- Hillside School, Inc.
Marlborough, Massachusetts (est. 1901)
A year-round boarding school for boys, grades 5-9, who have difficulty learning in a traditional setting. Offers small classes (8-10), individualized instruction, and a special program for students with Attention Deficit Disorder. Hillside School boasts a rural setting and a working farm on campus.
- Hindman Settlement School, Inc.
Hindman, Kentucky (est. 1902)
Specializes in treating students with Dyslexia, a learning disorder that hinders learning by conventional methods.
- Berry College, Inc.
Mount Berry, Georgia (est. 1902)
Founded by DAR member Martha Berry as a boarding school for deprived rural high school age youth. The school, now a private four-year college of liberal arts and sciences with an enrollment of 1,700, continues to provide educational opportunities regardless of economic circumstances through its financial aid and student work programs.
Recognizing the vast needs within the American Indian communities, DAR established scholarships and funds to provide financial assistance to Indian children. Annual contributions to Indian schools range from $70,000-$100,000.
- Chemawa Indian School
This high school is the oldest boarding school in continuous operation for American Indians in the United States. DAR funds various projects and operating expenses for the school.
- Bacone College
DAR supports this college through scholarships and general operating expenses. The college attracts Indian students from across America. Its renowned School of Nursing specializes in medical problems endemic to the American Indian population.
- Indian Youth of America Summer Camp Program
Provides summer programs for Indian youth that teach physical, cultural, personal, and career growth while fostering self-esteem and pride in their heritage. DAR provides scholarships for children to attend and funded a promotional video to be used by the camp for future fund raising.
Scholarships and Awards
- DAR provides scholarships to outstanding students in the following categories: History, American History, Political Science, Preservation, Medicine, Nursing, and Occupational and Physical Therapy.
- College scholarships are also offered to qualifying students graduating from DAR schools, disabled students, and to children of DAR members.
- DAR presents awards to the honor graduates of the nation's top military academies.
- Literacy Promotion
DAR provides volunteers for Literacy Promotion programs across the country that teach reading skills to adults.
- Junior American Citizens
Open to all students pre-K-12. JAC promotes good citizenship through teaching U.S. history and the principles of government. The programs provide practical ideas for patriotism that children can use at home, school or in their communities. Children can participate in various contests on the local, state, and national level. Currently, there are more than 270,000 JAC members in public, private, and parochial schools, and community centers. Membership is free.
- American History Essay Contest
More than 4,000 schools participate in this annual contest for students in grades 5-8, with nearly 66,000 essays submitted yearly. Medals and certificates recognizing class participation are awarded to students and outstanding teachers.
- DAR Museum Programs
DAR offers various programs for local children through their schools or Girl Scout organizations which teach students about colonial life.
- Summer Camps
Quilt Camp and Colonial Camp are summer programs sponsored by the DAR Museum that teach children about their American heritage through hands-on experience.