Members of Cadron Post Chapter, National Society Daughters of the American Revolution, are celebrating Constitution Week through Sunday, Sept. 23.
"The weeklong commemoration of America’s most important document is held annually from Sept. 17-23, yet it is one of our country’s least known official observances," said Carol Rolf, regent of Cadron Post Chapter in Conway. "Sept. 17, 2012, marks the 225th anniversary of the signing of the United States Constitution."
Rolf said the DAR began the tradition of celebrating the Constitution many years ago. In 1955, the Daughters petitioned Congress to set aside Sept. 17-23 annually to be dedicated for the observance of Constitution Week. The resolution was later adopted by the U.S. Congress and signed into Public Law #915 on Aug. 2, 1956, by President Dwight D. Eisenhower.
The local celebration began Saturday, when DAR members attended the Quapaw District Annual Meeting and Constitution Day Luncheon at Michelangelo’s Restaurant in Conway. Shirley Barham of Conway serves as Quapaw District Chairman.
In addition to Rolf and Barham, others attending Saturday’s event were Suzann Waggoner of Mount Vernon, chapter vice regent; Carolyn Frazier of Vilonia, chapter secretary; State Regent Jo Ann Cooper of Cabot; State Registrar Jo Kilduff of Conway; State Volunteer Information Specialist Sharon Lessenberry of Conway; Elizabeth Benton, Mary Coleman, Ruth Smith and Nancy Thompson, all of Conway; Carolyn Moon of North Little Rock; and Kim Pool of Vilonia, a prospective member.
Chapters in the Quapaw District are Cadron Post in Conway, Maria Van Buren in Clinton, Dardanelle Rock in Dardanelle, Major Jacob Gray in Jacksonville, Captain Basil Gaither, Gilbert Marshall and Little Rock-Centennial, all in Little Rock, General William Lewis in Morrilton, Prudence Hall in North Little Rock and Persis Lovely-Clarksville in Russellville.
Rolf said the aims of the celebration are to emphasize citizens’ responsibilities for protecting and defending the Constitution, preserving it for posterity; to inform the people that the Constitution is the basis for America’s great heritage and the foundation for their way of life; and to encourage the study of the historical events that led to the framing of the Constitution in September 1787.
Rolf said the Daughters began work in 1928 on a building as a memorial to the Constitution. John Russell Pope, architect of the Jefferson Memorial in Washington, D.C., was commissioned to design the performing arts center, known as DAR Constitution Hall. Today, DAR Constitution Hall, located near the White House in Washington, D.C., is the only structure erected in tribute to the Constitution of the United States of America.
Known as the largest women’s patriotic organization in the world, DAR has approximately 3,000 chapters, including 44 in Arkansas. The DAR has long promoted patriotism through commemorative celebrations, memorials, scholarships and activities for children, and programs for new immigrants.
For more information about DAR and its programs, visit the website www.dar.org or call 501-327-0482.