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Margaret Gaston Chapter of DAR about to turn 120

Staff Reports • Updated Oct 1, 2017 at 1:00 PM

Susan Shelton Tarver organized the Margaret Gaston Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution on Oct. 30, 1897 in Lebanon, and it was chartered the same day.  

There were 14 charter members, and together they began a legacy that continues. It is the eighth oldest chapter in the state, and 2017 marks its 120th year. The charter hangs in the historic Fessenden House museum in Lebanon.

Throughout the last 120 years, the chapter was active in community service. The ladies in the chapter worked toward promoting patriotism, preserving American history and securing America’s future through better education for children.  Recognition awards such as the DAR Good Citizen Award and the JROTC medals are given to high school seniors of outstanding ability and achievement. Students in fifth through eighth have the opportunity to participate in history essay contests.  Support for the DAR-affiliated schools is also given. 

The chapter helped support the legacy of Cumberland University and other historic Lebanon-Wilson County interests. In 1925, the chapter gave a bronze drinking fountain, dedicated to Revolutionary War soldiers and all soldiers of succeeding wars. It was on the Lebanon Square for many years. Helping U.S. veterans is also important to the chapter. Some of the members were active to get the new Wilson County Veterans Museum ready to open, and the chapter has a flag garden planted on its campus. The chapter has honored Revolutionary War patriots by placing commemorative markers on their Wilson County graves.          

The list of things the chapter does continues into the future.

Anyone with a patriot in your family tree or would like more information about DAR may send an email to margaretgaston@tndar.org

The chapter will have a birthday celebration Wednesday from 2-4 p.m. at the Fessenden House at 326 W. Main St. in Lebanon. A re-dedication of the fountain given to the city in 1925 will take place at 3 p.m.

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