The National Society for the Sons of the American Revolution
by Midnight Freemasons Contributor
Bro. R. Johnson
Recently I lost my father, and going through his things; pictures, documents, items and the like, I became curious about my lineage. So I did what I think most people do, they sign up for ancestry.com. It was amazing, in five hours I had traced my line back to 1508 in Radnorshire and Wales England. Now, I'm not saying its this easy for everyone, I just had one of those trees I guess. Captain James Powell, my thirteenth great grandfather his wife Jane Jones and their son John Powell, my 12th great grandfather settled in first Jamestown and then on the way to Virginia Captain James Powell, died by an attack from a group of Native Americans. I found that I had two uncles and a grandfather who served in the Revolutionary War, three more uncles and a grandfather who served in the War of 1812, and as they settled in the states eventually moving south, found their way to Arkansas, where they served in the Confederacy.
Through my research, I found an interesting organization, The National Society for the Sons of the American Revolution. This is a special society which members must trace their lineage directly to men who served in the Revolutionary War. There is also The Daughters of the American Revolution as well. From Their (NSSAR) website it reads “The Sons of the American Revolution is the leading male lineage society that perpetuates the ideals of the war for independence. As a historical, educational, and patriotic, non-profit corporation organized under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, we seek to maintain and expand the meaning of patriotism, respect for our national symbols, the value of American citizenship, and the unifying force of "e pluribus unum" that was created from the people of many nations -- one nation and one people.”
I of course jumped at the chance to join. I am still in the process actually. It is a process which involves many records as you can imagine. Of course we all know the legends of Freemasonry in regards to its association with the American Revolution, so of course I though “Is there a Masonic Body of this organization?” And the answer was yes and no. There is a group and they are on Facebook and further, they are called the Mason Sons of the American Revolution. But they are not an official group. Just a bunch of us that are in fact Freemasons as well.
If your family has been here a while, it might be worth checking out. There are several ancestry websites which are far less expensive than the one I used, and from what I understand, just as good. Happy hunting everyone!
Sir Knight Robert Johnson, 32° is the editor of the Midnight Freemasons blog. He is a Freemason out of the First North-East District of Illinois. He belongs to Waukegan Lodge No. 78. He is also a member of the York Rite bodies Royal Arch, Cryptic Council and Knights Templar, and a member of the Scottish Rite Valley of Chicago. Brother Johnson currently produces and hosts a weekly Podcast (internet radio program) Whence Came You? which focuses on topics relating to Freemasonry. In addition, he produces video shorts focusing on driving interest in the Fraternity and writes original Masonic papers from time to time. He is a husband and father of three. He works full time in the safety industry and is also a photographer on the side as well as an avid home brewer. He is also working on two books, one is of a Masonic nature.