THE COLONEL JAMES WOOD II CHAPTER CONDUCTED A FLAG RAISING CEREMONY AT THE WAYSIDE INN, MIDDLETOWN, VA.
THE RAISING OF THE NEW FLAG
On 26 March 2022, the Colonel James Wood II Chapter of the Virginia Society Sons of the American Revolution conducted a Flag Raising Ceremony at the Wayside Inn, Middletown, VA. The Wayside Inn is the oldest continuously operated inn in America. The original building was constructed in 1797 and has been used as a stage coach stop, a place for aide and comfort for both sides during the Civil War and known as America's first motor inn. It was originally known as Wilkerson's Tavern. In the mid 1800's, it was named Larrick's Hotel and in 1960 was renamed the Wayside Inn. The Sons of the American Revolution regularly conduct events at the inn to include chapter meetings, color guard musters and flag retirement ceremonies. For the flag raising event, Dale Corey emceed with compatriots Patrick Morris and John Petrie as the flag detail. The color guard was commanded by Brett Osborn and consisted of the compatriots Paul Christensen, Kelly Ford, Erick Moore, Nathan Poe, Tom Reed, Will Reynolds, Marc Robinson and Mike St Jacques. The retired flag will be properly disposed of at a flag retirement ceremony to be conducted 14 Jun 2022 at the Wayside Inn.
color guard members Brett Osborn, Erick Moore, Paul Christensen and Marc Robinson with the U.S. flag. (Photos courtesy of Thomas "Chip" Daniel)
On 26 March 2022, the Colonel James Wood II Chapter of the Virginia Society conducted a ceremony to commemorate National Vietnam Veterans Day at the Veterans Memorial, Middletown, VA. In 2017, U.S. Senators Pat Toomey and Joe Donnelly introduced legislation to honor Vietnam Veterans with a Day. The Vietnam War was a long, costly and divisive conflict. U.S. involvement began in 1954 after the French lost the Battle of Dien Bien Phu, ending a century of rule in Indochina. Vietnam was split at 17 degrees north latitude. By 1957, a civil war was in full swing. In 1961, President John F. Kennedy began a stronger involvement. By 1962 there were 9,000 U.S. troops in South Vietnam. As a result of a coup in South Vietnam, the political instability persuaded President Lyndon Johnson to further increase U.S. support. In August 1964, two U.S. destroyers were attacked and the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution was passed giving Johnson broad war making powers. By June 1965, 82,000 combat troops were in country with increases of 100,000 in July 1965 and again in 1966. Approximately 2,700,000 American men and women served and for the first time, America failed to welcome its veterans home, as opposition to the war in the United States bitterly divided Americans. In 1973, President Richard Nixon signed the Paris Peace Accords and ordered the withdrawal of U.S. forces. On 29 March 1973, U.S. combat and combat support units were withdrawn from South Vietnam. For almost two decades, Americans had raised their right hands and committed to serve and defend our Constitution as uniformed members of the United States Armed Forces during a tumultuous period in our country’s history. Throughout the years of the Vietnam War, 9 million Americans earned the title of United States veteran. Returning veterans did not always receive the deserved respect for serving the country. Over 58,000 did not return and are duly recognized on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall in Washington, DC. Every service member of the Vietnam generation should know their sacrifices mattered and their service made a difference. On 28 March 2017, President Donald Trump signed the National Vietnam War Veterans Day Act, calling for 29 March to be a day of recognition of the service and duty rendered by all servicemen and women of this era. Today and every day, we now honor the bravery and commitment of a generation of Americans who valiantly fought in service of the country they love and recognize the continuing impact of the veterans of the Vietnam conflict, including their families, caregivers and survivors. Dale Corey emceed the commemoration with a color guard commanded by compatriot Brett Osborn and included Paul Christensen, Thomas "Chip" Daniel, Kelly Ford, Erick Moore, Patrick Moore, Nathan Poe, Tom Reed, William Reynolds, Eric Robinson, Marc Robinson and Mike St Jacques. Virginia Society First Vice President Ernie Coggins led the Pledge of Allegiance with Rev Jim Simmons providing chaplain service. A grateful thank you is given to the town of Middletown and Mayor Charles Harbaugh for providing us the opportunity to honor and commemorate Vietnam veterans.
Colonel James Wood II color guard commanded by Brett Osborn. Second photo is Dale Corey presenting a commemoration to Vietnam Veterans.
Brett Osborn giving a presentation on the life of John Holker.
On 2 April 2022, the Colonel James Wood II Chapter of the Virginia Society Sons of the American Revolution conducted a grave marking to commemorate the service of John Holker in the struggle for independence. The ceremony was conducted at the Burwell Cemetery, Millwood, Clarke, Virginia.
John Holker was born in Manchester, England. His father, fled to Rouen, France in 1745 and became prominent in French textile manufacturing. John returned to England between 1769 and 1772 to study the British manufacturing processes. In 1777, along with his father, he became involved in assisting American commissioners in Paris to obtain military clothing and supplies. The following year, he was sent to America as a diplomatic representative and observer to the American Revolutionary War effort.
When the French increased their aid to America in 1779, Holker became a key figure in the alliance. General George Washington relied on him for information concerning the French fleet and he became the go between Washington and Admiral D'Estaing. He was further, instrumental in purchasing supplies for the French fleet and horses for General Rochambeau's French army.
By 1780, Holker had become Consul General for Pennsylvania, Delaware, New Jersey and New York. During his time with these States, he become engaged in private business. When the French government was informed of his financial activities, he was asked to observe their prohibition against public officials engaging in trade or resign. He resigned in 1781.
At some time in 1792, he moved his family to the Winchester area. He acquired the home known as Springsbury, near Berryville, Virginia. John Holker, died in 1822 and was buried in the Catholic Cemetery in Winchester. In 1904 his remains were moved to the Old Chapel Cemetery (also known as Burwell Cemetery).
The ceremony was emcee'd by Dale Corey. Attending were Virginia Society SAR 1st Vice President Ernie Coggins and 3rd Vice President Dr Michael Weyler; representing the national society was Surgeon General Dr Ernest Sutton; from Virginia Society Children of the American Revolution President Sara Cox; French Society Trustee Pat Kelly and Rich Rattan from the Virginia Order of Founders and Patriots of America. France was represented by Colonel Aymeric Tardieu De Maleissye, Lieutenant Colonel Alain Abad and Lieutenant Colonel Marc Gilles with their wives. Wreaths and greetings were presented by all of these organizations.
Virginia SAR chapter wreaths were presented by Thomas "Chip" Daniel, Colonel James Wood II; Tom Hamill, Culpeper Minutemen; Pat Kelly, Thomas Jefferson; Ken Morris, George Mason; Dave Cook, Fairfax Resolves; Paul Cox, Colonel Fielding Lewis; Leamon Duncan, Colonel William Grayson and Ken Bonner, Sergeant Major John Champe. The Daughters of the American Revolution chapters were Darcy Mathes, Commonwealth Virginia; Paula Schwoerer, Elizabeth McIntosh Hamill; Kecia Brown, Ketoctin; Anita Bonner, Lanes Mill and from West Virginia, Michelle Phillips, Pack Horse Ford. Brett Osborn provided a presentation on the life of John Holker and his contributions to the fight for independence. The Virginia State Color Guard presented the colors and fired a three round musket salute to honor John Holker and his support of the American colonies during the Revolutionary War. In the guard were Commander Brett Osborn, Ken Bonner, Sean Carrigan, Paul Christensen, Dave Cook, Jim Cordes, Dale Corey, Thomas "Chip" Daniel, Leamon Duncan, Kelly Ford, Doug Hall, Pat Kelly, Erick Moore, Patrick Moore, Allan Phillips, Nathan Poe, Will Reynolds, Marc Robinson, Bill Schwetke, Barry Schwoerer, Jacob Schwoerer, Mike St Jacques and Richard Tyler.
After the ceremony, refreshments were provided by Robin Hall, Becky Ebert and Deborah Corey with a presentation of the old chapel and cemetery by Director Bob Randolph. A special thanks is given to Randolph and cemetery caretaker Marcel Bousquet for their support with this event
Participants of the grave marking ceremony
On 9 April 2022, the Colonel James Wood II Chapter of the Virginia Society Sons of the American Revolution made presentations at the Shenandoah Boy Scout Council's Historical Day Camp held at Camp Rock Enon near Gore, Virginia. The camp was used to emulate a cross between colonial America and the mountain man/fur trade era. Scouts learned about the various skills used during those times. The SAR had displays/presentations on flags, colonial attire, muskets and historical facts. They were shown cartridge construction, musket drills and gun safety. Scouts from 13 troops participated from throughout the council area. There will be a summer camp which will include a Mountain Man program later this year. The SAR Color Guard was assisted by several scouts in presenting and raising the colors during the opening ceremony. At the close of day, the SAR provided a closing retreat ceremony to include a formal folding the flag ceremony. Participating with the Colonel James Wood II chapter were President Thomas "Chip" Daniel, Vice President Paul Christensen, David Burks, Sean Carrigan, Dale Corey, Patrick Moore, Michael St Jacques and Richard Tyler.
Left picture is Patrick Moore and Mike St Jacques giving presentation on musket. (photo courtesy of Thomas "Chip" Daniel). Right picture is Mike St Jacques and Paul Christensen folding the flag. (photo courtesy of Thomas "Chip" Daniel)
Photo is in the outdoor kitchen, l. to r. Jan Long, Waltraud Hornick and Vernee Peterson (Photo courtesy of Michelle Phillips.)
l. to r. Dale Corey, Will Reynolds, Jay Hatfield, Nathan Poe, Anne Simmons, Marc Robinson, Eric Robinson, Allan Phillips, Jan Long, Waltraud Hornick and Vernee Peterson. (Photo courtesy of Michelle Phillips
On 16 April 2022, the Warren Heritage Society and Colonel James Wood II Chapter of the Virginia Society Sons of the American Revolution cosponsored a Colonial Patriot Day at the Balthis House, the oldest house on the oldest street in Front Royal. Also participating was the French and Indian War Foundation and a vintage blacksmith, covering the early part of history in what is now Warren County.
Melanie Gregory of WHS coordinated the events throughout the day and Waltraud Hornick and Vernee Peterson of the WHS prepared a meal of pork stew and corn fritters on the fireplace in the outdoor kitchen. They used the same techniques as the colonists in the backcountry of the Virginia Frontier. At this time, cooking was done exclusively on wood-burning stoves and fireplace hearths, both of which radiated intense heat. An outdoor kitchen, kept the heat, the smoky smells and the risk of fire out of the main house. The hearth was level with the floor to allow for cooking ease. Dutch ovens with a grooved lid were the main cooking vessel. These pots were placed on the hearth floor on top of a bed of hot coals. The same glowing coals were then spread evenly onto the pot lids. Game, beef and pork were often cooked on a spit over the open fire. Kettles were suspended over the fire from a metal swinging arm.
There were several presentations given by the members of both groups on the Balthis House, colonial equipment, blacksmithing, cooking demonstrations, muskets and safe firing procedures. The house is a rare surviving example of a two-story wood frame Federal-style townhouse. The house has many architectural elements salvaged from other houses of the same era that were demolished, and includes appointments of furnishings of the period. The original section is three bay and the house was expanded to its present size in the mid-19th century. Also on the property are the outdoor kitchen, playhouse, general store, smoke house, Ivy Lodge, Belle Boyd Cottage and WHS Archives.
Front Royal was a prosperous center of wagon manufacturing, serving the westward expansion of the US. The Balthis family were successful blacksmiths and in mid-19th century, had additions built on the original house. A small blacksmith's shop has been built as a recreation of the time. Jay Hatfield, worked hard in the blacksmith shop forging and shaping metal. He gave several presentations on the different kinds of equipment that he made.
All of the buildings were open with demonstrations and presentations at all locations. At the end of the day, the Colonel James Wood II Chapter provided a musket salute, firing three rounds in honor of all patriots. Participating for the SAR were Sean Carrigan, Dale Corey, Allan Phillips, Nathan Poe, Will Reynolds, Eric Robinson and Marc Robinson. In addition, French and Indian War Foundation members Dale Corey, Eric Robinson and Marc Robinson provided demonstrations and incite into the French and Indian War era on the Virginia Frontier. Jan Long and Elizabeth Cagle dressed in colonial attire, adding to the atmosphere with Jim Heflin, (retired archivist) and SAR compatriot adding insight and information about the history of the county
Professor Peter R. Henriques lectured on a chapter from his most recent book, First and Always, A New Portrait of George Washington.
On 12 April, the Richard Henry Lee Chapter (RHLC) of the Virginia Society Sons of the American Revolution (VASSAR) met for the second time in 2022 at the Indian Creek Yacht and Country Club (ICYCC).
The RHLC president, Michael Rhodes, chaired the meeting. Rhodes started the meeting recognizing Dr. Mike Nickerson, by presenting him a five-year membership certificate for his loyal and faithful service to RHLC. Next the president recognized Bob Weekley who was leaving RHLC and VASSAR by transferring his membership to Kentucky where he is in the process of moving. Bob has been a member of the RHLC since April 2018. Bob’s wife Elaine was a guest at the meeting.
The president then announced that Miriam Sisson who attends Chesapeake Academy in Irvington was the winner of the RHLC’s 2022 poster contest and that on 20 April the RHLC will present her an award certificate and a scholarship check at the Academy. Miriam will represent RHLC in this year’s VASSAR poster contest and if she wins, she will represent Virginia in the National Sons of the American Revolution contest. Miriam is the daughter of Michael and Courtney of Farnham, Virginia.
After lunch the president asked Jim Russell to introduce the speaker for the event, Professor Peter R. Henriques. Dr. Henriques earned his PHD in 1971 at the University of Virginia, said Russell. He has taught American and Virginia History with a special emphasis on the Virginia Founding Fathers, especially George Washington (GW). He has written several books on our first President. The subject of this lecture was based on a chapter from his most recent book, First and Always, A New Portrait of George Washington.
Dr. Henriques (Peter) began his lecture with a slide that described GW as a GOAT. To provide meaning to this term, he used the example of the NFL quarterback Tom Brady who after winning multiple super bowls with different teams bears the tag “GOAT” an acronym for“Greatest of All Time.”
Peter then laid out why, in his opinion, the tag is appropriate for GW. First with his leadership America won its independence from Great Britain and then under his leadership America became a nation-two distinctly different achievement.
He listed ten factors which led to this success. The first factor, said Peter, was Good Fortune: one example was that he exposed himself to personal danger but survived; Physicality: 6’2” ram rod straight with a combination of great strength and grace; Ambition: GW strove not only to outdo all competitors but also to conquer and surpass himself, Peter said; Determination: firmness in mind and patience in suffering.
Peter then brought up the famous sculptor of GW done by Jean-Antoine Houdon at Mount Vernon in 1785. The bust is on the cover of Peter’s latest book. Peter believes the bust catches many of the factors he is describing to show GW’s success. It conveys GW’s strength- “if GW had been born in the forest he would have been the fiercest man among the savage tribes.”
Other factors for success that Peter listed were Passion: save for a few lapses, he was a man of granite self-control and a good listener; Courage: it enabled him to make and hold to unpopular but necessary decisions; Toughness: at the core of his being was a steely will; Realism: quoting GW “We must make the best of mankind as they are, since we cannot have them as we wish them to be.”
GW had many Talents: a keen intellect, phenomenal memory, astute judgment and an understanding of power to name a few. The most important factor was his Character which was a combination of courage, wisdom, temperance, and justice. Abigail Adams said GW could have been a very dangerous man-but because he was one of the best-intentioned men in the world, he put his talents to work not in self-aggrandizement but to lead his country in the glorious cause of establishing and expanding liberty and republican values. It was a priceless gift.
With that Dr. Henriques concluded his lecture and answered several questions from his audience who gave him a standing applause.
RHLC will hold its next meeting on 10 May at ICYCC.
The guest speaker will be Robert Teagle, CEO Christ Church.
If you are interested in learning more about RHLC contact president Rhodes 1-804-929-1444 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Fairfax Resolves (FXR) and Sgt Maj John Champe (SMJC) Chapters of the Virginia Society, and the Sgt. Lawrence Everhart (SLE) Chapter, Maryland Society Sons of the American Revolution sponsored an event marking the graves of five revolutionary war patriots at the New Jerusalem Lutheran Church Cemetery, Lovettsville, Virginia on 10 April 2022. At least sixty-nine lineage society members represented 28 NSSAR, NSDAR and C.A.R. chapters and societies. Participants included Christopher Hornbaker, Vice Mayor of the Town of Lovettsville, direct descendants of the patriots, representatives of American Legion and other veteran organizations, church members and citizens of the City of Lovettsville for a total of about one hundred people in attendance.
Brett W. Osborn, Col. James Wood II Chapter (CJWII), commanded the Color Guard. He organized it into three elements, the seven-member Color Guard carried the National and Maryland and Virginia State colors, the thirteen-member Honor Guard carried chapter and other flags, and a twelve-member musket detail. Doug Hall, drummer, (CJWII Chapter) accompanied the presentation of the colors and the musket firing.
Attendees gathered to commemorate the lives and service of five Revolutionary War patriots, their families, and their community. All patriots were members of the church, founded in 1765 in the “German Settlement.” Histories of Loudoun County describe the residents of the German Settlement as, “intensely loyal” to the cause of freedom and to the cause of the American Revolution.
The Reverend Doug Jones (SLE Chapter) gave the Benediction following the presentation of the colors. Dim Dioquino (FXR) led all in the Pledge of Allegiance and John Thomas (FXR) led the Pledge to the SAR. The posting of the colors then followed.
The main portion of the program began with Vice Mayor Hornbaker presenting greetings and reading the Town’s Proclamation declaring 10 April 2022, “Revolutionary War Patriots Day.” Michael P. Zapf, Historian of the New Jerusalem Lutheran Church summarized the history of the church from its beginnings in a log cabin located in a corner of the present graveyard. The German-speaking members of the church came from Switzerland, Alsace, and Lorraine (now part of France), the upper Rhine territories of Wurttemberg, Baden, and the Palatine. Michael described how the colonies offered them an opportunity for asylum from the disasters of war and economic hardship. They came to see this new land as theirs, “das gelobte land,” the promised land.
The reading of short biographies of the five patriots followed starting with Don Cooper (FXR), who spoke about his patriot ancestors Michael Cooper, Sr (1742-1815) and John Fawley (1719-1803). Dave Cook (FXR) spoke about Frederic Belse (1741-1831) and Ed Spannaus (SLE Chapter) talked about patriots Michael Bogar (1762-1822) and John Compher (1740-1814). All the patriots were farmers who owned or leased their land and paid the supply tax for 1782, 1783 or both.
The readings of the biographies concluded with three rousing huzzahs, a signal to our volunteers to prepare for the unveiling of grave markers. A fourth huzzah given immediately after the Grave Marking Dedication signaled the unveiling. Dale Corey, Col James Wood II Chapter led all in a hearty rendition of “God Bless America.” the wreath presentations were by five State Societies, eleven SAR Chapters, ten DAR Chapters, two C.A. R. Chapters and the Virginia Order of Founders and Patriots of America.
The moment all had been waiting for began with the movement of the musket squad across the field and into position. The sound of gunfire echoing across the fields easily reminded one of skirmishes that could very well have happened on these very grounds so many years ago.
While anticlimactic, the event ended with the SAR Recessional, led by Richard Rankin, George Washington Chapter, the Benediction given by The Reverend Krista Vigelis, and closing remarks by the chapter president, David Huxsoll, Fairfax Resolves.
The SAR Chapters who participated were the Fairfax Resolves, Sgt Major John Champe, Sgt Lawrence Everhart (MD), Col James Wood II, George Mason, George Washington, Col William Grayson, Col Fielding Lewis, Thomas Jefferson, John Paul Jones (MD) and Thomas Stone (MD). The DAR Chapters include Ketoctin, Mary Hemings Bell, Fairfax County, Bottony Cross, Lane’s Mill, Elizabeth McIntosh Hammill, Stone Bridge, Frederick, James Madison, and Pack Horse Ford. Children of the American Revolution Societies were Rev. John Marks, and Col Alexander Spotswood.
Figure 1 Darrin Schmidt Pays Homage to Michael Bogar
Figure 2 Color and Honor Guard Prepares to Present the Colors
Figure 3 Wreath Presenters at the New Jerusalem Lutheran Church Cemetery
Figure 4 Musket Salute
13 Apr 2022 Washington, DC
In celebration of Thomas Jefferson's 279th Birthday, the DC SAR hosted a ceremony at the Thomas Jefferson Memorial in the Tidal Basin of Washington, DC. The Virginia SAR was represented by President Bruce Meyer who was escorted by Bill Schwetke (Culpeper Minutemen Chapter) and Dale Corey (Col James Wood, II Chapter), Other participants included the Maryland SAR, the Department of the Interior, represented by the National Park Service, University of Virginia, the Thomas Jefferson Foundation, the General Society of the War of 1812. The DC DAR, the National Society of the C.A.R., the Descendants of the Signers of the Declaration of Independence, the Monticello Association, the Children of the American Colonies, the Hereditary order of the Families of Presidents & First Ladies of America, the Descendants of American Farmers, and the Thomas Jefferson Heritage Society.
The program opened with the presentation of the colors by the Joint Armed Forces Color Guard, with the National Anthem provided by "The President's Own U.S. Marine Band Brass Quintet". Wreaths were presented by all of the major participants.
The Col. George Waller Chapter and the Martin's Station chapter are co-hosting a commemoration of the life of General Joseph Martin and his actions at the Raid at Martin's Station. The event will be May 14th in the city that bears Joseph Martin's name, Martinsville, VA. The commemoration will begin at 1 PM at the Old Henry County Courthouse located at 1 E. Main Street, Martinsville, VA, 24112. This is a National SAR event, and we are planning a large, community-filled day, so come out and join us! (We will move the ceremony inside the courthouse if the weather gets rough).
12 Apr 2022 Halifax, NC
On April 12, 1776, the Fourth Provincial Congress of North Carolina, meeting in Halifax, unanimously adopted the resolves, authorizing the North Carolina delegates to the Continental Congress to encourage independence. The Halifax Resolves Chapter of the North Carolina SAR hosted an SAR national event noting this anniversary. President Bruce Meyer represented the Virginia SAR, and two Virginia SAR chapters, Culpeper Minutemen and Dan River, presented wreaths.