15-19 Jun 2016 Washington, DC
The National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution held their 125th Continental Congress at the DAR's Constitution Hall in Washington, DC, on June 15th - 19th. The SAR was well represented, especially on opening night. The CMM were represented by President Bill Schwetke and his wife, Cat, who is regent of the Fauquier Court House Chapter of the NSDAR.
NSSAR President General Tom Lawrence addressed the gathering on opening night and was among many patriotic lineage organization leaders presenting their congratulations to the NSDAR. The US Navy Band provided patriotic music for the evening. The program was two retrospectives: one covered the 125 Continental Congress, and the the other covered the 125+ years of service to country by the NSDAR.
On Thursday the Virginia State Society of the DAR held its luncheon, which featured a talk by Mindy Tidmore Kammeyer, Reporter General, NSDAR, and a retired flight attendant, who regularly flew troops into and home from Vietnam during 1966-1973.
The highlight on Friday was an evening program on genealogy, which featured both PBS "Genealogy Roadshow" co-host Mary Tedesco and Familty Tree DNA CEO Bennett Greenspan. Family Tree DNA hosts a DNA project group for the DAR.
Saturday night was "National Defense Night" which featured the USO, US Department of Veteran Affairs Secretary Robert McDonald, and the presentation, by video, of the DAR Medal of Honor to actor Gary Sinise.
12 Jun 2016 New Baltimore, VA
This Afternoon CMM President Bill Schwetke presented a flag certificate to Mark King. Mr. King proudly displays the US Flag on a nicely situated flag pole that is illuminated at night. Mr. King's father, John King, received a flag certificate from the CMM in January.
11 Jun 2016 Luigi's Italian Restaurant, Culpeper, VA
After the ceremony at the DAR Culpeper Minutemen Memorial, we convened our June Meeting at Luigi's Italian Restaurant in Culpeper. Ten CMM members were joined by 4 prospective members, 5 wives, 6 other DAR/C.A.R. members, and two guests. After the formalities we promptly inducted our two newest members, father and son, Bob and Alec Burnett. Their patriot ancestor is Paul Revere. After the induction the Military Service Medal was presented to Bob Burnett for his six years service in the New York Army National Guard.
Bob Burnett is the Music Director of The Blue Ridge Chorale and a retired owner of a Landscape Design Company. He has a Bachelor of Arts from Yale University, and a Master of Music Shenandoah University, and served from 1960-1966 in the 71st Inf, 42nd Div, NY Army National Guard. He is a member of the board of the Culpeper State Theatre, Wakefield Country Day School, and the Blue Ridge Chorale. He is also a member of the Culpeper County Planning Commission.
Alec Burnett is the Director of Food and Beverage Brand Initiative & Programs at Hilton International.
Our program was a talk on the role of the Hessian soldiers in our revolution, given by Ben Williams of the Regiment von Huyen re-enactors. His talk focused on the cultural differences between the Hessians and our patriot ancestors and the misunderstandings that arose from both that and intentional misinformation. About one third of the troops under British command were, in fact, soldiers from the various German governments. These German soldiers, commonly referred to as "Hessians", no mater what their origin, were highly trained soldiers. They typically were able to sustain a rate of musket fire that was twice that of the British regulars. German Jägers were also expert marksmen with rifles, not unlike our frontiersmen.
The Culpeper Minutemen Chapter of the SAR honored the Culpeper Minutemen of 1775 in a ceremony at the DAR memorial marker in Yowell Meadow Park today. Ten CMM Members (three in uniform), four prospective members, and four of our wives, were joined by several members of both the Culpeper Minute Men and Faquier Court House Chapters of the NSDAR, and the Asby Gap Chapter, C.A.R. Special guests this year were three members of the Regiment von Huyen, Hessian re-enactors. CMM 1st Vice-President Jerry Hubbard was the Master of Ceremonies.
The program opened with the combined color guard posting the colors of the United States, the 1775 Culpeper Minutemen, and the Regiment von Huyen, to the beat of Regiment von Huyen drummer Ken Smith-Christmas.
After the Pledge of Allegiance, and the SAR Pledge, President Schwetke gave a brief history of the Culpeper Minute Battalion. Then the Roll of Honor was called for twelve of the known Culpeper Minutemen, followed by the ringing of the bell by Len Cowherd, and the reading of a short biography of each by three readers: Secretary Tom Hamill of the CMM, Regent Mary Ann Cowherd of the CMM/DAR, and Past Regent Beverly Alexander of the FCHC/DAR. Those we honored today included:
Next each group presented their wreath in honor of the 1775 Minutemen, with their own honor guard of musketeers, Don Jennings, and Larry Alexander. Treasurer Bill Mutziger presented the CMM wreath, Regent Mary Ann Cowherd presented the CMM/DAR wreath, Regent Cat Schwetke presented the FCHC/DAR wreath, Braden McGreevy presented the Ashby Gap Society of the C.A.R. wreath, and Grenadier Alan Wetherald presented the Regiment von Huyen wreath.
Finally a musket team of Continental Line Soldiers (portrayed by the CMM Color Guard) and a Hessian Grenadier (portrayed by Alan Wetherald), fired a musket volley to salute the 1775 Culpeper Minutemen.
Thomas Nelson Jr. Chapter Marks the Grave of Past Virginia SAR President (1992-93) Dr. Thomas Wirt Sale, Jr.
4 June 2016 Hampton, VA
The Thomas Nelson, Jr. Chapter marked the grave of past Virginia SAR President Thomas Wirt Sale in a ceremony that included the several members of the Sale family, the Virginia SAR Color Guard, the Fife and Drum of Yorktown, and a bugler from VMI. Compatriot Sale was president of the Virginia Society in 1992-93, and NSSAR Surgeon General 1997-1998. Compatriot Sale is buried in the cemetery of St. John's Episcopal Church, which was established in 1610 and is the oldest English speaking parish in continuous existence in the USA. The CMM were represented by President Bill Schwetke, and his wife Cat. President Schwetke participated in the Color Guard and presented the chapter wreath.
The Master of Ceremonies was President Bruce Meyer of the Thomas Nelson, Jr. Chapter. Family members gave detailed accounts of Compatriot Sale's life and the patriotism of his ancestor, Anthony Godwin. The family members then unveiled the marker at their father's grave. Wreaths were presented, a musket volley fired, then echo taps played by the buglers.. Afterwards their was a Thomas Nelson, Jr. Chapter meeting at the Grey Goose Restaurant.
3 Jun 2016 Warrenton, VA
Th CMM represented by President Bill Schwetke and Paul Chase of the Col William Grayson Chapter worked the crowd at Warrenton's First Friday in June, passing out "Liberty Sprigs" and telling their story. We also passed out SAR Trifold Brochures to prospective members.
Compatriots and Friends,
We are in for a special treat for our June Chapter Meeting as the program will be a presentation by reenactors of the Hessian Regiment von Huyen. They will also join us for the ceremony at the DAR Culpeper Minutemen Memorial in Yowell Meadow Park before the chapter meeting. The DAR Memorial is not easy to find, so please consult the directions in the Muster Call. We will also have DAR and C.A.R. participation in our ceremony. Hope to see you at both the ceremony and the chapter meeting.
Our next “big” event will be the celebration of Independence Day in Culpeper; both our own historic event on the courthouse lawn and the parade down Main Street. Lon Lacey always does an outstanding job planning and executing these events for us, and again this year Jim Bayne will provide his trailer for the parade. Both events always draw a good crowd and it is a great time to interact with our community.
I want to thank those of you who continue to support our activities by attendance and participation. We had a great turnout for Memorial Day at Culpeper National Cemetery. We had five uniformed color guardsmen plus Paul Chase from the Col William Grayson Chapter, three compatriots in mufti, one future member, and six family and friends. That was a great program and we received several complements from those attending. There are also several other organizations that do much more than we do for this Memorial Day Service and deserve our praise. I am especially thinking of the Culpeper County High School Band. School is out and all of the young men and women are on their own time, on a holiday no less. They, their parents, and Director Duane Clore are to be commended. I have written a letter to the editor of the Culpeper Star-Exponent stating the above and hope it is published. If you remember, we gave the Band Director, Duane Clore, a Bronze Good Citizenship Medal in January.
Enjoy the summer, and I hope to see you at our events in the next few months.
Bill Schwetke, President
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