DAR promotes Constitution Week — Sept. 17-23
The National Society Daughters of the American Revolution urges Americans to reflect on the U.S. Constitution during this month’s annual observance honoring this foundational document of national governance, a Sept. 9 DAR news release stated.
“There are two documents of paramount importance to American history: the Declaration of Independence, which forged our national identity, and the United States Constitution, which set forth the framework for the federal government that functions to this day,” DAR President Gen. Denise Doring VanBuren said. “While Independence Day is a well-recognized and beloved national holiday, fewer people know about Constitution Week, an annual commemoration of the living document that upholds and protects the freedoms central to our American way of life.”
DAR initiated the observance in 1955 when the service organization petitioned the U.S. Congress to dedicate September 17-23 of each year to the commemoration of Constitution Week.
Congress adopted the resolution, and on Aug. 2, 1956, President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed it into Public Law #915.
The celebration’s goals are threefold: to encourage the study of the historical events that led to the framing of the Constitution in September 1787; to remind the public that the Constitution is the basis of America’s great heritage and the foundation for its way of life; and to emphasize U.S. citizens’ responsibility to protect, defend and preserve the U.S. Constitution.
The Constantia Chapter, which is the local DAR chapter for women in the Franklin and Suffolk areas, is commemorating the 234th anniversary of the drafting of the Constitution of the United States of America with a display at the Ruth Camp Campbell Memorial Library in Franklin, and the chapter has also distributed flyers to local businesses, chapter member Patricia Milteer stated.
She noted that at 4 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 17, Franklin Baptist Church will join other churches, schools, firehouses, city governments and individuals across the country by participating in Bells Across America. Ringing the bells at 4 p.m. EST in all time zones is encouraged so they are heard simultaneously from coast to coast.
The Franklin City Council issued a proclamation for Constitution Week at its Aug. 23 meeting, and Milteer stated that Dr. Alan W. Edwards, chairman of the Southampton County Board of Supervisors, presented a proclamation to chapter members Aug. 24, proclaiming the week of Sept. 17-23 as Constitution Week.
The DAR release stated that the National Society has been the foremost advocate for the awareness, promotion and celebration of Constitution Week. The annual observance provides innumerable opportunities for educational initiatives and community outreach, two mission areas of crucial importance to the National Society. By fostering knowledge of, and appreciation for, the Constitution and the inalienable rights it affords to all Americans, DAR helps to keep alive the memory of the men and women who secured our nation’s foundational liberties.
“In communities across America, Daughters will erect hundreds of community displays, sponsor municipal proclamations, ring bells and stage programs to raise awareness of the Constitution’s tenets and importance,” VanBuren said. “We invite everyone to join us in celebrating this powerful document, which has enabled our democracy within a republic for more than two centuries. We hope that all Americans will learn more about the Constitution and its immense impact on our nation.”
One of the largest patriotic women’s organizations in the world, DAR has more than 190,000 members in approximately 3,000 chapters across the country and several foreign countries. DAR members promote historic preservation, education and patriotism via commemorative events, scholarships and educational initiatives, citizenship programs, service to veterans, meaningful community service and more.
For additional information about DAR and its relevant mission, visit www.dar.org.