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Members of the Lewis-Clark Chapter celebrated the holidays on Dec. 5 with a luncheon meeting at Fremont Golf Club.

Special guests were Anita Bowman, Sue Reyzlik and Holly Willert, chapter members who don’t often have the opportunity to attend regular meetings. Dorothy Pat Amstrup, who now lives in Fremont but is a member of an Alabama DAR chapter, also attended.

The meeting opened with the DAR Ritual. The chaplain’s prayer was taken from the inaugural address of President George H. W. Bush, appropriate because the meeting was held on the National Day of Mourning for President Bush.

The reading of minutes was waived, and the treasurer’s report read and accepted.

Reports were given on the President General’s message, Chapters Overseas, Conservation, American Indians, Constitution, and Chapter History.

The Constitution message consisted of the history of one of the wives of the signers of the Constitution, Catharine Meade Fitzsimons, wife of Thomas Fitzsimons. Born in 1740, her father was an Irish refugee who had extensive commercial holdings in Barbados and was a prominent Roman Catholic who helped build St. Mary’s Church in Philadelphia.

Her husband, Thomas, was a leading Philadelphia merchant. During the Revolution he commanded a militia company and donated generously to the Continental Army. Washington, Hamilton, Jefferson and John Adams were guests at their home. Catharine died of tuberculosis in 1810 and her husband died a year later. They are buried in Vault 14 of St. Mary’s graveyard in Philadelphia.

Carol Ann Verbeek reported on the Armistice Day Wreath Laying Ceremony held on Nov. 11 at John C. Fremont Park, and the Gold Star Mother Ceremony held the same day at Ridge Cemetery.

Judy Ekeler reported that plans are underway for the dedication of a grave marker for Polly Havens, a daughter of a Revolutionary War soldier. A marker will be placed at Pleasant View Cemetery in rural Butler County and the dedication will be a joint effort of Lewis-Clark Chapter, David City Chapter and the Butler County Historical Society. As soon as a date is agreed upon, plans will be formulated for the dedication and reception.

Regent Betsy Hansen read a letter from State Regent Suzanne Jarman concerning a marker to be placed at the Omaha National Cemetery. It will be a gift from all Nebraska DAR members, in memory of all who have served in the military since the American Revolution. After discussion the chapter voted to participate in the project.

Following the luncheon, the members shared special ornaments or Christmas items, and told the accompanying stories. All members enjoyed sharing favorite Christmas memories.


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