On May 25, 1892, Mrs. Benjamin Harrison, President General of the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution, and wife of the 23rd President of the United States of America appointed Mrs. J.N.C. Stockton as regent to organize the first Florida DAR chapter in Jacksonville. Mrs. John G. Christopher is affectionately known as “Mother of the Florida Daughters” since it was she who was most active in organizing the Jacksonville Chapter, NSDAR. Three years later, on April 2, 1895, she was confirmed as organizing regent and the state of Florida had its very first DAR chapter, the Jacksonville Chapter, NSDAR. On March 12, 1894, Mrs. Adlai E. Stevenson, then President General, appointed Mrs. D. G. Ambler as Florida state regent. Mrs. Ambler was later elected state regent in February 1896, and she served through 1897.
In the 128 years that followed the organization of the Jacksonville Chapter, NSDAR, 66 Florida state regents have graced, guided, and nurtured the growth of our beloved Florida State Society. The threefold purpose of the NSDAR is exactly the same today as when our National Society was organized in 1890: historic preservation, education, and patriotism.
Historic Preservation: Efforts that preserve our cultural heritage such as acquiring and protecting historical sites, erecting memorials, encouraging historical research in relation to the American Revolution, preserving artifacts related to the American Revolutionary War, and promoting celebrations of all patriotic anniversaries.
Education: Promoting knowledge to both young and old to help develop an enlightened public, providing them the greatest capacity for performing their duties as American citizens. This includes providing scholarships and monetary support to outstanding students in Florida to further their education, supporting the DAR schools, sponsoring essay contests for school-age children, and promoting youth citizenship programs.
Patriotism: To promote patriotic endeavors and love of country. We salute the Florida State Society, Daughters of the American Revolution, for one hundred and twenty-eight years of devoted service to the objectives of our National Society; for service to our nation; for supporting the Constitution of the United States of America; for the continued support of our armed forces and veterans; for commitment to our American heritage and to American history; for support for conservation, education, literacy, and women’s issues.
We, the Florida State Society Daughters of the American Revolution, are ever mindful as we continue to strive toward the future. Our solemn duty and responsibility are to emulate the spirit of the men and women who achieved American independence.
Photos courtesy of Florida Daughters and Archives.