Susan Gillette Meer, president of the Dolley Payne Madison Chapter of the United States Daughters of 1812, speaks at a ceremony for the dedication of a historical marker for McClurg Foundry in Downtown Pittsburgh on May 14, 2016
These two photos are from Robert Fulton Chapter Meeting.
9.24.2015, Boiling Springs, PA luncheon at the house of Carolyn Holt, Chapter President.
The meeting/combined with tour of Cumberland County Historical Society (CCHS).
The woman are Margaret Skrivseth and Gail Runshaw in the first photo.
The second photo are of Jenne Renkin, Jacqualyn Hillegass and Betty Miller.
The organizing officers of the Captain William Magill Chapter came together for the first time, May 9, 2015. Officers included in the first picture are Christie Caywood, Heather Husband Ruseskas, Valerie Cecile Neidich Moran, Cheryl Shaw Lewicki, Irene Walker (State President), Michelle Lewicki, Connie Taylor, and Marguerite Bock Mogila.
In the second picture the officers are standing in front of Captain William Magill's Mansion that has since been turned into a store. All took place in Doylestown, Pennsylvania.
In picture number three, September, 2015 Captain William Magill Chapter attended the Bucks County Genealogy fair. They set up a table to help promote new membership. In the picture are Lorraine Kish, Christie Caywood, Connie Taylor, and Mrguerite Bock Mogila. On November 7, 2015 Captain William Magill had their charter day! In the fourth picture is the a picture of all the chapter officers. Christie Caywood, Heather Husband Ruseskas, Valerie Cecile Neidich Moran, Cheryl Shaw Lewicki, Dr. Marion T. Lane, Michelle Lewicki, Connie Taylor, and Marguerite Bock Mogila.
Keith Hodan | Trib Total Media
Members of the new Dolley Payne Madison chapter of the National Society United States Daughters of 1812 held their charter ceremony on Saturday, Sept. 27, 2014, in Mt. Lebanon.
Elizabeth Calhoun (left), Virginia Apyar and Susan Gillette Meer attend the first meeting of the Pittsburgh chapter of the Daughters of 1812 in at Meer's In Mt. Lebanon home on Saturday, Sept. 27, 2014.
By Rebecca L. Ferraro
Wednesday, Oct. 1, 2014, 9:00 p.m.
The National Society United States Daughters of 1812 has experienced a revival as a result of the war's bicentennial, and a Western Pennsylvania chapter has re-formed with 61 members.
Members of the Dolley Payne Madison chapter held their charter ceremony on Saturday in President Susan Gillette Meer's home in Mt. Lebanon. The nonprofit, non-political group is for women who can trace their lineage to a patriot who fought in the War of 1812.
The chapter, named for the wife of President James Madison, pays homage not only to Dolley Madison but to the original Pittsburgh chapter. Pittsburgh's first Daughters of 1812 formed in 1897 as the Dolley Madison chapter, but it merged in 1990 with another chapter as membership dwindled.
“It's a perfect name,” Meer, 42, said. Dolley Madison “brought the country together in order to do good in the community. You have to come together as a team, and you need social connections to do that.”
Meer, who found potential members through online genealogy groups and other sources, emphasizes the need for community service and said it typically stops after high school graduation.
“I really believe it makes you a better citizen to do community service. This is a good way for people to be involved,” she said.
The chapter plans to focus on promoting service and patriotism.
There are 31 prospective members, and the group plans to meet three or four times a year.
Possible projects include historic preservation efforts, presentations of medals to Reserve Officer Training Corps members, marking patriots' graves, contributing books to the organization's 1812 Memorial Library in Washington and visiting veterans' hospitals.
“For me, it's all about history,” said member Lucina Verish, 51, of Doylestown. “When I find that I can connect my family to our American history, that's when it comes together for me.”
Verish is the chapter's registrar, responsible for helping aspiring members locate the patriots in their lineage and prove the birth, marriage, and death of every man and woman between the ancestor and the member. The task is tedious but worthwhile.
“It's a stake in history, patriotism and love of country,” Verish said. “It's a sisterhood. People are interested in the same thing you are — you have that connection.”
Nationally, the organization has nearly 5,400 members in 162 chapters. In Pennsylvania there are chapters in Erie and Lancaster.
Members from several chapters traveled to Baltimore on Sept. 14 to celebrate the anniversary of Francis Scott Key penning the poem “Defence of Fort McHenry” in 1814. The poem later became the lyrics for “The Star-Spangled Banner.”