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NSDAR Archives

Institutional archives exist to document the organization that created them. The purpose of the NSDAR Archives is to serve as the repository for NSDAR records which are no longer administratively useful but which have sufficient historical or other value to warrant their continued preservation. The NSDAR Archives houses the non-current permanent records created in the course of business by the National Society—items such as correspondence, meeting minutes, project files, photographs and the like. According to the NSDAR Archives Policy adopted in 1983, only the President General may grant access to the NSDAR Archives for research use.

Archives Exhibits Online

The Four Founders

Decidedly not ladies of leisure, the four founders of the DAR were anything but traditional. Two were single and two were widowed, and all four were working women who supported either children or extended family.

Dazzling Daughters

From its outset and beginning with its founders, the Society's ranks have included uncommon women who achieved uncommon goals. They include First Ladies and firsts in their field, actresses and adventurers, artists and authors, reformers and humanitarians, educators and engineers, doctors and nurses, and even pioneers in space. While their accomplishments are as diverse as their professions, all of them have been brave women who often performed heroic acts and shared a sense of purpose and pride, and an undaunted pursuit of their ideals.

Access Policy

The following items are available for research use without special permission: the DAR Magazine, the annual Proceedings, all printed histories of the DAR state societies as well as a variety of other publications including, but not limited to, chapter and state society yearbooks, committee directories, handbooks, and bylaws. Additionally, access is granted to archival photographs, ceramics, music, and assorted objects collections.

Permission from the President General is required for research access to all other materials housed in the NSDAR Archives. Researchers who wish to petition the President General for access to archival collections must do so in writing and should, insofar as possible, provide details regarding the parameters and goals of the research project, the records to be consulted, and plans for publication. Researchers are encouraged to submit inquiries as early as possible to allow adequate time for the President General to review the request.

If a published work results from the use of NSDAR archival or other materials, proper citations are required including footnotes (or endnotes) and bibliography. The archives staff should be notified when publications are released.

Interested researchers should review the complete NSDAR Archives Access Policy Statement as well as the Researcher Policies and Procedures. A signed copy of this form should accompany any written request for access to archival records.

Contact Information

Potential researchers should work with an archivist to determine which specific archival materials may be of interest. An appointment is required to conduct research in the NSDAR Archives. Contact the archives staff by telephone: (202) 879-3256 or email:


Contributions to the NSDAR Archives Fund are used to purchase appropriate documents or objects, conserve the holdings, or acquire items necessary for the maintenance of the archival facility.