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DAR, Battlefield Trust join forces to honor America’s founding people, places
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DAR, Battlefield Trust join forces to honor America’s founding people, places

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#America250 Bath, N.C.

Living historians portray Colonial women at a historic site in Bath, N.C.

Famed for its role in the American Civil War, Virginia is the state whose ground was most fought over during the four years of America’s deadliest conflict.

But earlier, it was a cradle of liberty, home to the author of the Declaration of Independence, the commander in chief of the Continental Army and the first U.S. president, and the father of the U.S. Constitution and author of the Bill of Rights.

Now, to mark the 250th anniversary of the nation’s birth, the Daughters of the American Revolution and the American Battlefield Trust have teamed up to plan digital interpretation of the founders’ stories and preserve sites where patriots fought against Great Britain.

As the nation prepares for #America250 in 2026, the trust and DAR say they are uniting to seek powerful ways to remember the valor of that founding generation.

“American independence was not preordained,” the two national nonprofits said in a statement. “It was won on the battlefield by brave volunteers willing to sacrifice everything for an ideal, a hope and the promise of liberty.”

“Lending our expertise in the stories of our Patriot ancestors will enrich the Trust’s expertise in crafting compelling 21st-century interpretation materials,” DAR President General Denise VanBuren said. “No organization has a better appreciation for the men and women who achieved American independence than does the DAR—after all, we know the Patriots, their service, their families and their stories.”

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“Our two organizations, working individually, have accomplished much,” Trust President David Duncan said. “By joining forces during the America 250 celebration, we can create an enduring legacy that inspires long after the anniversary has ended. Together, we will develop new and meaningful ways to tell the compelling stories of the people who forged America.”

Previewed via a video presentation to state and regional DAR leaders during the recent National Society Daughters of the American Revolution Continental Congress, the groups’ collaboration is twofold.

First, they have pledged to work with the National Park Service to protect 2,500 acres of Revolutionary War battlefield land by the end of the 250th anniversary’s commemoration, creating places to remember the ordinary citizen-soldiers who achieved independence from the colonies’ mother country. The targeted battlefields are among the most famous in U.S. history: Yorktown, Brandywine, Cowpens, Guilford Courthouse and Saratoga.

They will also create a groundbreaking online gateway to enliven the Revolutionary era’s fascinating people and places.

“This digital experience will use technology to share these compelling stories with modern audiences, showcasing the diverse viewpoints and experiences of those who witnessed the dawn of American liberty,” the DAR and the trust said.

“The focus on the 250th anniversary of the Revolutionary War will be an opportunity to reflect on the lives of all those who aided the cause of independence—from the military generals, to the privates serving in the Continental Line, to the ordinary men who drilled and served in local militias, to the women who raised and maintained families, to those men and women of native and African heritage who provided aid,” LeAnn Fetherolf Turbyfill, the DAR’s state regent for Virginia, told the Culpeper Star-Exponent on Tuesday. “The members of the Daughters of the American Revolution are well versed to share those extraordinary stories—the stories of our ancestors.”

The American Battlefield Trust is dedicated to preserving America’s battlegrounds and educating people about what happened there and why it matters today. The nonprofit, nonpartisan organization has protected more than 53,000 acres from the Revolutionary War, War of 1812 and Civil War. Learn more at battlefields.org.

The National Society Daughters of the American Revolution was founded in 1890 to promote historic preservation, education and patriotism. Its members are descended from the patriots who won American liberty during the Revolutionary War. With nearly 190,000 members in 3,000 chapters worldwide, the DAR is one of the world’s largest and most active service organizations. To learn more, visit DAR.org.

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Clint Schemmer, a journalist since 1980, has worked at papers in California, North Carolina and Virginia. He’s been a bureau chief, editorial-page editor, copy desk chief and local news editor. Now a staff writer at the Culpeper Star-Exponent.

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