COLONEL JAMES WOOD II CHAPTER COSPONSORED WITH THE SHENANDOAH CHRISTIAN ALLIANCE COMMEMORATION OF PETER MUHLENBERG
On 22 January 2022, the Colonel James Wood II Chapter of the Virginia Society Sons of the American Revolution cosponsored with the Shenandoah Christian Alliance to commemorate Peter Muhlenberg, the "Fighting Parson". Due to the wintry weather, the event occurred at two locations. The main group of compatriots conducted the commemoration at the Wayside Inn, Middletown, VA. Bishop Larry Johnson with compatriots Dale Carpenter and Dennis Parmerter, braved the weather to honor Muhlenberg at Woodstock. This was held in front of the old courthouse where a bust of the parson has been placed by the Daughters of the American Revolution at the location where Muhlenberg gathered troops to join the American Revolution. In attendance were the Virginia State Sons of the American Revolution Chaplain, the Rev Eugene Thomas, and his wife Amanda. It was at this site where the Fighting Parson gathered recruits after delivering his final sermon. He ended his sermon with the quote from Ecclesiastes, "A time of war, and a time of peace". He then declared, "And this is the time of war". He removed his clerical robe, revealing a Colonel's uniform and marched to the square to enlist men to join the cause. At the Wayside Inn, a formal event, emceed by Chapter President Thomas "Chip" Daniel. Dale Corey presented a history of Muhlenberg's military service. He served in the military throughout the war, participating in many of the most important battles, from Charleston in 1776 to Yorktown in 1781. In 1776 at Sullivan's Island off Charleston, South Carolina, his troops were in reserve and committed late in the battle. Major General Charles Lee, the American commander reported the Virginia troops were
"Brave to the last degree". 1 February 1777, Muhlenberg obtained the rank of Brigadier General, then ordered to join Washington's army in Philadelphia. He led his brigade at the Battle of Germantown and from December 1777 to Jun 1778, he was with George Washington at Valley Forge. In 1780, Muhlenberg was given command of all forces in Virginia. 1 December 1780, Major General Baron von Steuben became commander of the American forces in Virginia, becoming Muhlenberg's superior. On 24 April 1781, the Virginia forces fought British troops outside of Petersburg. Although outnumbered, the Virginia militia held bravely for twenty-five minutes and retreated in perfect order. Their goal was not to stop the British, they just wanted to delay them. Von Steuben said, "General Muhlenberg merits my particular acknowledgements for the good disposition which he made and the great gallantry with which he executed it". At the Siege of Yorktown, Muhlenberg had command of a brigade of Continentals. His brigade led the American column, and his men were part of the rotation of mounting the trenches. After Yorktown, he remained in Virginia, recruiting, and organizing troops to send to other armies. Muhlenberg became Major General on 30 September 1783. Peter Muhlenberg was one of the many steady unsung heroes of the war, whose efforts contributed to the fight for American Independence. After the war, Muhlenberg returned to Montgomery County, Pennsylvania and entered politics. He eventually served in many positions at the local, state, and national level. On 1 October 1807, his 61st birthday, Peter Muhlenberg died in Gray's Ferry, Pennsylvania. A true American hero and patriot. At the Wayside Inn event, Virginia State SAR President Jeff Thomas gave greetings with a brief history of Muhlenberg's early life. He next was the Virginia State Children of the American Revolution President Sara Cox and Virginia Society of Order of Founders and Patriots of America compatriot Richard Rattan. Wreath presenters were Patrick Moore, Colonel James Wood II; Paul Cox, Colonel Fielding Lewis; Leamon Duncan, Colonel William Grayson; Tom Hamill, Culpeper Minutemen; Forrest Crain, Fairfax Resolves, Ken Morris, George Mason and Ernie Coggins, George Washington chapters of the SAR. The color guard was comprised of Sean Carrigan (CJWII), Paul Christensen (CJWII), Dave Cook (FR), Forrest Crain (FR), Leamon Duncan CWG), Kelly Ford (CJWII), Doug Hall (CJWII), Tom Hamill (CMM), Charles Jameson (CMM), Erick Moore (CJWII), Patrick Moore (CJWII), Brett Osborn)CJWII), Dennis Parmerter (CJWII), Allan Phillips (CJWII), Will Reynolds (CJWII), Eric Robinson (CJWII), Marc Robinson (CJWII), Bill Schwetke (CMM) and Barry Schwoerer
h a menacing storm front and a less-than-hopeful weather forecast, the Norfolk Chapter’s Annual Dinner Meeting was held on January 20th at the Princess Anne County Club. The meeting was called to order by out-going President Gary Pridgen followed by the invocation by Chapter Chaplain Wayne Boone and Pledge of Allegiance by Compatriot Mark Jumper.
Our guest speaker was VASSAR 1st Vice President R. Bruce Meyer. A beautifully prepared meal was enjoyed by the members and their guests. After the dinner concluded, awards were presented.
Virginia Society Chapter Service Medals were awarded to Wayne Boone and incoming President Bob Bruce for their work as Chaplain and Chapter Historian and Acting Secretary respectively. Kimball Thompson received the Bronze Good Citizenship Medal, and the Chapter Distinguished service Medal was awarded to Treasurer Mike O’Shea. Bronze Roger Sherman Medals were awarded to former Chapter President Ken Hawkins and newly installed Chapter Vice-President Tim Ahlgrim. Lynne Hardee Pridgen was presented with the Martha Washington Medal in recognition of her unwavering support of husband Gary during his tenure as Chapter President who also received the Past Presidents Pin and Certificate.
Compatriot Linwood McMahon was inducted into the Chapter by VASSAR 1st Vice-President Meyer with Compatriot Linwood’s lovely wife Charlene pinning the Society’s rosette on him.
Outgoing President Gary Pridgen and newly installed Bob Bruce each addressed the room with remarks followed by the SAR Recessional by Compatriot Linwood L. McMahon and the evening meeting was closed with the benediction by Chapter Chaplain Wayne C. Boone.
THE COLONEL JAMES WOOD II CHAPTER SPONSORED A COMMEMORATION OF THE BATTLE OF COWPENS AT MT HEBRON’S CEMETERY, WINCHESTER.
Musket Squad firing salute l. to r. Marc Robinson, Bill Schwetke, Clay Robinson, Forrest Crain, Dennis Parmerter, Kelly Ford, Ken Bonner, Sean Carrigan and Doug Hall (photo courtesy of Scott Straub).
On 15 January 2022, the Colonel James Wood II Chapter of the Virginia Society Sons of the American Revolution sponsored a commemoration of the Battle of Cowpens at Mt Hebrons Cemetery, Winchester. The battle was fought on 17 Jan 1781 near the town of Cowpens, South Carolina in Cherokee County. BG Daniel Morgan led an army of tough Continentals and backwoods militia to victory over LTC Banastre Tarleton's battle-hardened force of British regulars. In the lead up to the battle, the British under Lord Cornwallis were in the process of a successful southern campaign in an attempt to defeat colonial forces during the American Revolutionary War. The British had captured Savannah, Charleston and Camden, South Carolina in their efforts to regain control of governments in the southern colonies. Nathanael Greene was given command of the American Forces in the south with the idea of rebuilding the tattered army and slowing the British war effort. Two weeks after taking command, he split his army, sending General Daniel Morgan to cut supply lines and hamper British operations in the remote, undeveloped areas of the south. Banastre Tarleton was sent to stop Morgan. On 12 January, Morgan's Army was found on the Pacolet River in South Carolina. Tarleton began an aggressive pursuit and despite rain and flooded rivers, gained ground. Morgan retreated to burr's Mill on Thicketty Creek. He decided to make his stand with the flood swollen Broad River to his back on a field used for cattle grazing that was some 500 yards long and just as wide. At dawn on 17 January, it was clear and bitterly cold. Tarleton had roused his troops to move on Morgan at 2 a.m. in the morning, looking to catch the colonists in the early hours of the day. When Morgan's scouts brought news of Tarleton's approach, he moved among his men shouting, "Boys, get up! Benny's coming!" Tarleton formed his Army on the Green River Road for an attack. He was confident of victory as Morgan was hemmed in by the Broad River and the park like terrain was an ideal battlefield for his dragoons. He had Morgan right where he wanted him. He attacked head on, with a line extending across the meadow, artillery in the middle and fifty Dragoons on each side. To counter this, Morgan organized his troops into three lines. In front, hiding behind trees were selected sharpshooters. At the onset of the battle they picked off attackers, sending the Dragoons into a retreat. With this, they moved back 150 yards to join a second line made up of militia commanded by Andrew Pickens. As they moved back, the British reformed and charged again. Morgan's men fired two volleys and retreated to a third line. At this point, Tarleton's Army believed the colonists were in full retreat and they charged in time for William Washington's patriot cavalry to come into the battle from the flank. This put the crown's troops into disarray. Again the British officers rallied their troops with the reserve force sent in to turn the tide of battle to the royal forces. During the noise and confusion of battle, a colonial command to the continental forces was misunderstood for retreat. The British sensing victory charged hard after the Americans. Morgan rallied his troops and had them face about and fire in unison into the charging ranks. Added to this was a fierce Patriot bayonet charge, which turned the tide of battle. Reformed colonial militia and cavalry entered the battle, leading to a double envelopment of the enemy. The British began surrendering en masse. The battle was over in less than an hour in a complete victory for the American forces. Tarleton and some of his men escaped and returned to Lord Cornwallis' army with news of the shocking defeat. British losses were 110 dead, over 200 wounded and 500 captured. Morgan lost 12 killed and 60 wounded. This battle was the turning point of the war in the south which led up to the patriot victory at Yorktown and ultimately an end to the war. The ceremony was emcee'd by chapter Vice President Thomas "Chip" Daniel. Attending to present greetings were Virginia Society 2nd Vice President Ernie Coggins and Virginia Society Children of the American Revolution President Sara Cox. Chaplain duties were led by Rt Rev Larry Johnson and Rev Jim Simmons. Marc Robinson commanded a color guard consisting of Ken Bonner, Sean Carrigan, Forrest Crain, Kelly Ford, Doug Hall, David Huxsoll, Dennis Parmerter, Nathan Poe, Eric Robinson and Bill Schwetke. Wreaths were presented by 2nd Vice President Coggins; President Cox; Marc Robinson, Colonel James Wood II Chapter; Bill Schwetke, Culpeper Minutemen; David Husxoll, Fairfax Resolves; Paul Cox, Colonel Fielding Lewis; Anita Bonner, Lanes Mill, Daughters of the American Revolution and Anna Cox, Colonel Alexander Spotswood Society, Children of the American Revolution. Dale Corey gave a presentation on the battle and a musket salute was fired to commemorate the patriots who fought at Cowpens.
Virginia SAR War Graves Publication Chairman, Mike Lyman, Releases 2nd Edition of His Book on Patriot Graves in Virginia
Mike Lyman now has copies of the Second Editioin of Genealogical, Burial, and Service Data for Revolutionary Patriots Buried in Virginia available for purchase - see the details below. Mike and others have put a tremendous amount of time into the research behind this book. Each chapter should have a copy for their Graves Chairman to use.
I received today 30 copies of the soft back books of the second edition “Genealogical, Burial, and Service Data for Revolutionary Patriots Buried in Virginia” See cover attached.
Twenty five hard cover copies have been ordered and should arrive in a week or so. I plan to bring the inventory to the VASSAR annual meeting in February
1. We charge members $30 each for hard copy.
2. Charge members $25 for books going to Libraries.
3. Charge DAR members the same as our members, $30
Charge members $15 plus additional $5 for postage if mailed
Members should contact me if they desire a book be mailed to them. A check for the books should be to VASSAR. A check to me for packaging and mailing should be for $5.00.
My mailing address is:
Mike Lyman, VASSAR RW Graves Pub Chairman
21 Summers Lane
White Stone, VA 22578
Both the softback and hardback books are for sale at Amazon books - just click here.
On 30 December 2021, the Colonel James Wood II Chapter of the Virginia Society Sons of the American Revolution, recognized Allie Henry Jr, for his service to his country. James "Jim" Heflin, compatriot of the chapter presented Junior with a Certificate of Appreciation, Virginia State Commemoration of WWII Veterans Challenge Coin and a Wounded Warrior Coin for his service during World War II. Allie Henry, Jr. was born in Warren County 6 January 1925 . His home was located at the intersection of Remount Road and John Marshall Highway. He attended high school at the old high school that was located on Cresent Street and burned shortly after the new school on the hill opened. He was drafted in April 1943 and after training sent to Europe. In the spring of 1945, he was wounded and sent to a hospital in Paris, France. After recovering sufficiently to travel to the United States, he was placed on a hospital ship bound for the States. They were in the middle of the Atlantic in April when they got the news that President Franklin Roosevelt had passed away. After six more months of treatment, he was given a medical discharge on 12 November 1945. He worked as an electrician in the IBEW for over 40 years. After retirement, he has lived in Front Royal and can occasionally be found at the American Legion. Photo is Jim Heflin presenting Allie Henry with a Certificate of Appreciation for his service. (photo courtesy of James Heflin.)
On 8 January 2022, the Colonel James Wood II Chapter of the Virginia Society Sons of the American Revolution based in Winchester presented a Silver Good Citizenship Medal to Ms Ellen Gant of Middletown and Mr Jeffrey Taylor of Strasburg. This medal recognizes outstanding and unusual patriotic achievement and service. Ms Gant and Mr Taylor research and restore African-American cemeteries and grave sites. Of particular note was the work they performed at the Henrico Baltimore Cemetery in Reliance which was used from as early as 1781 to the 1930s by the African American community. They uncovered 198 graves, restored the cemetery, erected signage, a split rail fence and a kiosk with a map and chart of the cemetery. Their efforts included clearing brush, removing fallen trees and resetting stones. During their research, they located descendants from as far away as Harrisburg, PA, Ashburn and others from the Shenandoah Valley. In addition, they have worked on the restoration of the Old Georgetown Cemetery in Mt Jackson. This includes graves dating from 1885 - 1995 and additionally found 12 slave grave sites. They have begun work at the Sugar Hill Cemetery in White Post which includes army veterans from World War I who were among the first black engineers to arrive in France in 1918. The efforts of Gant and Taylor in uncovering history in the African American Community have impacted families from Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland and Pennsylvania. The ceremony was held at the Wayside Inn, Middletown Virginia. Chapter President Marc Robinson presented the awards with support from chapter members, David Carpenter, Sean Carrigan, Paul Christensen, Dale Corey, Thomas "Chip" Daniel, Lew Ewing, Doug Hall, and Allan Phillips.
The subject meeting is scheduled for February 11-13, 2022 at the Omni Richmond Hotel in Richmond.
Attached is the information for room reservations with a cutoff date for Friday, January 21st to take advantage of the group rate. Please make reservations early to insure having a room. Reservations may always be canceled if plans change.
Also attached is the meeting agenda and workshop information. Please note that committee meetings scheduled on Friday afternoon are open to all wishing to attend. The registration form and additional information will be sent out early this coming week.
Please note that CDC, Virginia Commonwealth and/or local recommendations and/or mandates, in effect at the time of our meeting, will be adhered to.
Please distribute this to all chapter/committee members encouraging attendance at the meeting.
R. Wayne Rouse
Secretary, Assistant Treasurer
& Awards Committee Chairman
702 Calibre Springs Way
Atlanta, GA 30342-1890
The Virginia Society Sons of the American Revolution Public Education Committee will conduct its annual commemoration of Black History Month by honoring Patriot William “Billy” Lee with a ceremony and wreath laying at his final resting place at the Slave Cemetery on the Mount Vernon estate. Your society is cordially invited to present a wreath. The ceremony will start promptly at 3:30 pm on Saturday, February 5, 2022, so please allow time for parking and walking down to the cemetery site. Details on entrance, parking, etc. will be forthcoming. Participants will not have to pay the customary entrance fee. So that I can provide a list of participants to Mount Vernon, a list of wreath presenters, and notify attendees in the event of snow or other updates, please register at the following site: