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DAR Coffee Table Book

NSDAR is proud to present the new coffee table book, American Treasure: The Enduring Spirit of the DAR. This stunning 9x12 hardbound book celebrates the contemporary work of the Daughters of the American Revolution with a look back at the fascinating history of the organization. Over 400 beautiful contemporary and historic photos and equally vivid text fill the 304 pages of the book.

American Treasure is available for $60 (special member price is $50). Books can be ordered online from the DAR Store or by calling the store toll-free at 888-673-2732. You may also download the American Treasure Order Formpdf to fill out and mail to National Headquarters.

American Treasure Wins Coveted PRSA Award
2008 PRSA Bronze Anvil Award of Commendation
2008 PRSA-NCC Thoth Award

Look Inside the New DAR Coffee Table Book

Take a Look Inside the New DAR Coffee Table Book, 
American Treasure: The Enduring Spirit of the DAR

Take a look at several beautiful pages from American Treasure: The Enduring Spirit of the DAR.

Inside American Treasure

American Treasure is not only a valuable resource for anyone interested in the past, present and future of DAR, but also a stunning keepsake to treasure for years to come.

Table of Contents 
Click here to take a closer look at the Table of Contents

The book tells the remarkable story of a century-old organization that
continues to be vibrant—and relevant—today.

American Treasure: The Enduring Spirit of the DAR 
illustrates how the organization continues to build 
on the amazing service work of its members.

Find out more at DAR Publications

History in the Making

A Conversation With Diana L. Bailey, author of
American Treasure: The Enduring Spirit of the DAR

By: Lena Basha
American Spirit magazine , Volume 141, No. 3, May/June 2007, Pages 16-17

You’ll want to make sure there’s plenty of room on your coffee table for American Treasure: The Enduring Spirit of the DAR, scheduled for release in June. Through vibrant photos and compelling text on 304 pages, the book celebrates the contemporary work of the National Society carried out by DAR chapters around the world, while also detailing the fascinating history of an organization that has stayed true to the important objectives set by its founders in 1890.

Diana BaileyFor the past year, author Diana L. Bailey has pored over the DAR Archives as well as contemporary articles and books. She also conducted more than 40 interviews to help her tell the remarkable story of a century-old organization that continues to be vibrant—and relevant—today.

"With each person I spoke to, whether it was an Honorary President General or someone else within the organization today, I gained new knowledge about the DAR, but it always went back to the mission," she says. "That’s what’s so fascinating about the DAR: The various projects of the organization have changed and evolved over time, but the mission has not—and it hasn’t needed to."

Bailey, who recently retired after almost 38 years in public relations, has written and edited a variety of pictorial history books on a range of topics, from the Mayflower Hotel in Washington, D.C., to the history of naval aviation. She recently spoke with American Spirit about American Treasure from her home in Virginia Beach, Va.

While researching in the DAR Archives and interviewing members, what most surprised and interested you?

I was stunned by all of the accomplishments of the DAR. For example, I had no idea that Valley Forge was in danger of being sold for private development until the DAR intervened, or that members led the way for occupational therapy for immigrants on Ellis Island, or that it was because of the DAR that many historical trails in danger of being lost, such as the Natchez Trace and the Oregon Trail, are now national trails, which have been preserved and marked. I was also surprised by how nontraditional the founders were and how much they accomplished. They were very progressive. That same thing is true for today’s Daughters. Talk to any member and you’ll be astounded that many are busy, successful career women who also do so much in their communities.

You have years of experience writing and editing historical books. How does American Treasure differ from your other projects?

DAR CollectionsOther projects I’ve worked on have been straight chronological histories on subjects with a somewhat limited audience. But as the research unfolded forAmerican Treasure, I realized that the story of the DAR would appeal not just to Daughters, but to any American because the history of the DAR is so tied to the historical events in this country. As a result, I tried to keep both perspectives in mind when writing the text and choosing the photos. Other books have already done a great job of capturing the history of the DAR, but this one gives dimension to today’s Daughters, fusing the contemporary story of the DAR to its rich history.

Since you are not a DAR member, how do you think an outsider’s perspective contributed to the telling of the DAR story?

Because I had no preconceived notion of the Society, I think I was able to let the Daughters tell the story themselves. I could just sit back and let their story unfold. I think I was also able to uncover and identify things that would appeal to both the Daughters and the general public. Some of them were stories even the Daughters themselves hadn’t heard before.

The title of the book, American Treasure, could be interpreted several ways. What does it mean to you?

I think the title speaks to the many facets of the DAR, that the organization is not just about the artifacts and the historical sites, but freedom, education, patriotism, and what it really means to be an American. The Daughters have never lost sight of that, and that’s the American treasure they help preserve. Since working on this project, I have a better appreciation of what it is to be American and what a treasure it is to be born here.

How do you think this book confronts common misconceptions about the DAR?

NYSE DARYou’re going to see Daughters rolling up their sleeves and getting their hands dirty, and you’ll read touching stories about Daughters volunteering at VA hospitals and providing basic necessities to soldiers returning from Iraq. When the DAR first formed, questions swirled about its purpose. So they hosted a social event that was so successful, some people were under the misconception that the DAR was just a group of rich women with a lot of time on their hands. There is a social aspect to the DAR, but it’s just a time for them to meet and affirm their service to the community. And I think this book shows that.

The book features more than 400 contemporary and historical photos. How do these vibrant images help illustrate the story of the DAR?

The book showcases more than 1,700 Daughters past and present. These are all Daughters in action. Even if you were just to glance at the photos and read the captions, you’d immediately realize that the DAR isn’t what everyone stereotypically thinks it is. It’s hard to pick a favorite, but two photos stand out. One of them is of DAR President General Edith Scott Magna (1932–1935) getting suited up for a flight in an open-cockpit, two-seater aircraft. She loved flying and was the first President General to really take advantage of it to meet all of her commitments. Another photo that shows that same adventurous, fun-loving spirit is the one of the members of the Knickerbocker Chapter in New York City ringing the closing bell at the New York Stock Exchange. No single photo can capture the diversity of service and the spirit of the Society, but hopefully this collection tells a story that really hasn’t been told before now.

Book CoverThe DAR coffee table book, American Treasure: The Enduring Spirit of the DAR, is available for $60.00 (special member price is $50.00).

Books can be ordered online from the DAR Store or by calling the store toll-free at 888-673-2732. You can also download the American Treasure Order Form pdf icon, and mail it to the National Headquarters.