Friday is the Fourth of July, with cookouts and singing and festive fireworks exploding nationwide. That has been the case in Lubbock, Texas (home of the Southwest Collection, by the way!), throughout its history, oftentimes facilitated by the efforts of its Nancy Anderson Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR), the records of which the SWC proudly makes available to the public.
The DAR pursues educational, historic, and patriotic objectives through programs and events, as well as collecting and caring for historic documents and artifacts. Founded in 1926, the Lubbock chapter is named for a Revolution-era ancestor of the chapter founder, Ruth E. Ford. A lengthy, handwritten account (a portion of which can be seen above) detailing more about both Nancy Anderson’s story and the history of the chapter can be found in the collection.
The Nancy Anderson Chapter has installed a number of historic markers in the Lubbock region, including the Mackenzie Trail marker in downtown Lubbock. They also promoted good citizenship through recognition awards for high school and college students. For the Chapter’s good works, they received the honor roll citation from the National Society of the DAR seen here in a page from one of their many scrapbooks. Some of the DAR Records consists of annual reports, news clippings, and photographs of yearly events. There are also treasurer’s records, information about obtaining DAR grave markers, details regarding the historic markers installed by the chapter, and valuable compilations of early South Plains residents’ obituaries. Perhaps most informative is their Year Book, which summarizes much of this information, as well as the names of current members. We have a forty-year run of these, dating from 1961 through 2001. The women of the DAR are dedicated supporters of the armed forces, and they proved it regularly through awards given to Reserve Officer Training Corps (R.O.T.C.) members and, of course, actively serving soldiers. This invitation was created for one of their many annual awards ceremonies, this one held in 1994 at Lubbock’s Reese Air Force Base.Finally, one of the programs of which the DAR takes the most pride is the training and recognition of immigrants aspiring to United States citizenship, emphasizing education about the United States Constitution. They even crafted pamphlets in native languages designed to help prospective citizens such as the ones seen above, which were written in German, Portuguese, and Hungarian. In our collections we also have several written in Polish, Spanish, French, Italian, and a host of other languages.
In short, the DAR, while a national organization, had a measurable presence in the local history of Lubbock and the South Plains: a fitting bit of trivia as we celebrate on this July 4th. Those interested in digging a little further into these records should get ahold of our helpful Reference Staff who are always happy to help however they can.