Wednesday, September 30, 2020

We Need You ...

Want to get more involved in your Oregon Society and National SAR but don't know how?  

Here are three great opportunities below that we need help with. We are just forming these new committees this year and need your help in making them happen. If you are interested in joining one of these committees please contact President Michael Tieman.

ORSSAR  Recognition Committee
This committee shall coordinate ORSSAR activities for tracking eligibility, encouraging activities, reporting achievements and recognizing individuals and organizations for noteworthy accomplishments. This committee combines the Eagle Scout, the Flag, the Medals and Awards and the Society and Chapter Competition Award Committee.

ORSSAR  Outreach Committee  
This committee will develop relationships with the Oregon community, the CAR, the DAR and the NSSAR committees. This committee combines the Center for Advancing American Heritage, the Color Guard, the CAR, the DAR and the Veterans and Patriotic Outreach Committees.

National SAR "America 250" Committee
In the tradition of Samuel Adams and Joseph Warren, we are calling on each State Society to form a state America 250 SAR Planning Committee to plan and organize State Society activities.  So we can help each other be informed, each State Society will have a CoC Secretary as the point of contact to the National Society America 250 SAR Committee.  Shortly, we will be launching an online area to report progress and develop interactive tools to help each other. For now, I ask that you have your State Society’s Committee of Correspondence Secretary send an email to the America 250 SAR Committee at 

As you know, the 250th Anniversary of the American Revolution is not only fast approaching, it is already here! While we are five years away from the 250th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence, March 6 of this year was the 250th anniversary of the Boston Massacre.  Leading up to July 4, 2026 we will have many unique opportunities promote patriotism, our objectives of education, and the honor our ancestors. No doubt you will agree, our nation needs to focus on our founding principles of liberty and freedom.

America 250 SAR is the anniversary coordinating committee of the National Society. Our charge is to work with the U.S. Semiquincentennial Commission, the America 250 staff of the American Battlefield Trust, America 250 DAR, CAR, and other heritage partners to plan the national celebrations throughout the country. State Societies and Chapters will be awarded streamers for activity related to the 250th and medals can be earned based on activities. America 250 SAR flags will soon be available through merchandising in the Flags section in the “Members Only” section of the SAR Store. 

We look forward to hearing from your state’s Committee of Correspondence Secretary.
Your most honorable servant,
Clifford Olsen,
America 250 SAR

Wednesday, September 23, 2020


 SAR Compatriot:Eugene Foley

Fraternal Connections
I have heard, over the years, that the “Indians” responsible for the Boston Tea Party were Freemasons.  While I’ve not yet been convinced that there is evidence of clandestine meetings of the lodge to execute such a plan, it is true that many of the Founding Fathers were active Freemasons.  Franklin, Washington, Otis, Wooster, Marshall, Lafayette, Montgomery, Putnam and Hancock were all active Masons.

While Masonry is often characterized as a “secret” really isn’t.  In fact, one might compare it with many other fraternal organizations, like the Grange, Pythians, Odd Fellows, and many others that use ritual and symbolism in their lessons teaching commonly held virtues of the communities they serve.  Such would certainly be consistent with the actions evident among those who would actively seek the abolition of tyranny and despotism.

As genealogical researchers, the lack of secrecy is a treasure trove of information.  Members wanted to be known as such, and even paraded (literally) to make their presence known.  The famous painting of the laying of the corner stone of the first national capital building shows Washington in Masonic adornment.  But, perhaps, most useful is the availability of historic membership information.  Many grand lodges have allowed the transcription of membership files which provide useful dates, occupations, and locations.  And can search them on the internet.

Wednesday, September 9, 2020

Wreaths across America

The Lewis & Clark Chapter was asked to submit a 2-3 minute video to the National Wreaths across America to be used in their advertising, radio, social media and other promotions between Sep. 12 and Dec. 19. It is to tell about us and our partnership with them.

We have made it into a YouTube video. Check it out.
Here is the link.

And Please, Sponsor a Wreath to be placed on a Veteran's grave at Willamette National Cemetery

Wednesday, September 2, 2020

Honoring A Patriot

Francis Lewis Ditto, Pvt PA
Declaration for Revolutionary War Soldier Benefits

 Compatriot Arlen B. Clark
The State of Ohio} Seneca County  ss} On this 3 day of October, 1833  personally appeared in open Court before the Court of Common Pleas (being a Court of Record) now sitting, “Frandz Dido” a resident of the township of Clinton said county aged more than seventy five years as he thinks, and he believes he is nearer eighty than seventy five years old, who being first duly sworn according to law doth on his oath aforesaid make the following declaration in order to obtain the benefits of the act of congress passed June 7, 1832
            That he entered the sirvice [sic] of the United States under the following named officers and served as herein stated - - - - - - - - - - - -
            In the winter of 1777-8, I think about the middle of January at McCollister Town York County Pa. I enlisted into the 2d Regiment of Pa. troops commanded by Col. Stewart Lieut. Col. or Major _______ Murray My company commanded by Capt Rob afterward by Capt. Koby – then Capt. Jacob Stoy ----- the name of the recruiting officer was was [sic] Robert Peeling I believe
            When I enlisted I was told by the recruiter that I should be a sergeant of Horse but I was soon undeceived for I served on foot, and as a private My twin brother of the name Jacob, with several others, enlisted at the same time and and [sic] under similar representations, from the recruiting sergeant, but when they found out that they had been gulled they deserted, and earnestly requested me to do the same but I concluded that my services were so much needed at the time that I would serve my time which was three years—Gen. Wayne was our principal officer under Washington and La Faytte [sic] was with us some times.
            Soon after my enlistment I joined the army at Valley Forge, where we remained during the winter ---
            I was in the Battle of Monmouth and the next day helped to bury the dead, heat killed more that day than sword pistol or musket
            I was with about 30 others taken prisoner at Newark, ( and I think it was the second winter of my service) we were taken to New York on the ice where we were put into the sugar house—Nights we were generally locked up in a Church, I think a Quaker church—We were prisoners about three months, while in the church we undertook to make our escape—We dug a hole under the wall of the church and under the pavement, (I remember I worked with a hog’s jaw bone) when we had all things ready waiting for a dark night a hessian boy who had deserted from the British and joined the Americans, and had been taken prisoner by the British (I suppose to make his peace) discovered to the British our wood chuck’s hole-------Soon after we were exchanged, when we rejoined the Army I think at Fredericksburgh.------
            At the time Gen. Wayne took Stony Point I was working at West Point at the large fort on the hill -----
            Some of the cannon which Wayne took at Stony Point, we mounted at West Point --- The largest I think was drawn up the hill by 26 yoke of oxen and about 60 men with drag ropes -----
            I wintered at White Plains one winter, and at Fredericksburgh the remainder I believe -------
            While in the service and near the close a baggage wagon upset which I at the lower side was endeavoring to hold up. I slipped and my hip was severely injured, however I was verry [sic] soon on duty again. ----- But the consequence to me has been verry [sic] serious, It was always lame, and more than thirty years ago I became and have ever since remained a cripple, the joint being completely destroyed, all which my physician told me was caused by the original injury
            A short time before my term expired there was a violent tumult among the soldiers, because they could not get discharged when their terms expired, Col. Stewart was driven out of camp at the point of the bayonet ---- The soldiers marched towards Philladilphia [sic] to address their grievances, ----Gen. Wayne was with us – I saw him repeatedly in much apparent danger, the soldiers pointing and crying shoot the Dan-d [sic] raskol[sic] &c.– I took no part in the revolt. – My time had not yet quite expired, - However when we got to Princeton (as I believe) and the difficulty was settled by common sense, it was found of the men whose terms had expired were getting their discharges, that I myself had but about two weeks more to serve, and thinking at that point the two weeks would be of little service.
            Capt. Whitemon and an other officer gave me a certifficate [sic] with the rest and we went to the Printing Office and got discharges – I think my own was signed by Gen. Wayne but as I hardly remember of seeing it since, it having been a long time lost, that I cannot tell for certainty who signed it – I believe it was a printed discharge – I remember the hanging of the spies who had been sent to us by the British-
I know of no person whose evidence I can procure that can testify to me services
            I hereby relinquish every claim whatever to a pension or an annuity except the present, and declare that my name is not on the pension roll of the agency of any State/s Frandz Dido             
Sworn to and subscribed the day and year first above written in open court Oct 3 1833/s  
Jas. Hamond  Clerk
Mr. Andrew Maine and Allen Campbell residing in the neighborhood of said Frandz Dido hereby declare that there is no clergyman residing in the neighborhood of said applicant, that we are well acquainted with the said Francis Ditto or in German “Frandz Dido” who has subscribed and sworn to the above declaration, that we believe him to be of the age which he has above sworn that he is, that he is reputed and believed in the neighborhood when he resides to have been a soldier of the Revolution and that we concur in that opinion.

Allen Campbell           
His Mark       Andrew  X   Maine                     
Sworn to and subscribed the day and year first Above written in open court
Joseph Howard,  Clerk
Here follows the questions put by the court as directed by the War Department with the several answers of the said Francis Ditto or “Frandz Dido” on his oath

Q1: Where and in what year were you born? A: I was born near Harrisburgh Pa. in the county of York, I cannot tell in what year but not far aside of 1758 as I believe I am now believe I am about 75 or 80 years old.
Q2: Have you any record of your age and if so what is it? A: My parents died when I was a small boy and I never saw any record of my age. I never kept any myself---
Q3: Where were you living when called into service? Where have you lived after the Revolutionary War, and where do you now live? A: When called into service I lived at McCollister Town, York County, Pa. When I left the service as above I went to Northumberton, Pickaway County, Ohio where I lived about 30 years – thence to Washington  Township. Pickaway County, Ohio where I lived about 15 – 16 or 17 years thence to Clinton Township,  Seneca County, Ohio where I now live.
Q4: How were you called into service, were you drafted, did you volunteer or were you a substitute, and if a substitute for whom? A: I was called into service by enlistment as above stated.
Q5: State the names of some of the Regular Officers who were with the troops when you served: such continental and Militia Regiments as you may recollect and the names and the general circumstances of your service, A: I will refer you to my statement above
Q6: Did you ever receive a discharge from the service, and if so by whom was it given and what has become of it? A: I will refer to my statement above and further will say that I have a faint recollection of having a discharge with me when I subsequently went for my back pay as per agreement
Q7: State the names of persons to whom you are known in your present neighborhood, and who can testify [sic] to your present character for truth and veracity and their belief of your services as a soldier of the Revolution. A: John Briner, John Wolf, John Sekrist [sic], Jacob Mumi [sic], Andrew Maine, John Lilly, Henry Keller, Allen Campbell, John Druge
Frandz Dido

The above answers sworn to and subscribed the date and year first above written in open court Oct 3, 1833.

Joseph Howard, Clerk
And the said Court do hereby declare their opinion after the investigation of the matter and after putting the interrogation presented by the War Department, that the above named applicant was a Revolutionary soldier and served as he states--- and the Court further certifies that it appears to him that Allen Campbell and Andrew Maine are residents o the Township of Clinton aforesaid and that they both are credible persons and that their statement is intitled [sic] to audit.
                                                            D. Higgins Presd Judge 2nd Circuit
            seal                                          Sedies Godney}
                                                                                    } Associates
                                                            Benjn Petteson}
 I Joseph Howard Clerk of the Court of Common Pleas of the County of Seneca and the State of Ohio do hereby certify that the foregoing contains the original proceedings of the said court in the matter of the application of Francis Ditto, or otherwise in German as he signs his name “Frandz Ditto” for a pension.---
In testimony whereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal of office the day and year first above written
Joseph Howard


Wednesday, August 26, 2020

ORWM Update

The main thing about the Memorial is that it is interactive.

What does that really mean?

It's all about QR codes and their power. For those who don't use them, or remember what they are, see the examples below. I have generated these to be etched into the red granite Memorial walls. They will be beside a heading or story that we want you to see more information on. They will link to web sites, photos or videos. While you are standing in front of the ORWM in Beaverton, Oregon you will scan these QR codes with your phone or tablet and be propelled across the nation or world to see more information.

Try it now. I have tried the following method with both an Android phone and an iPhone and they work. Nothing special you have to download. **Note; If you have a problem, you can download free QR Code Reader apps for Android and iPhone.

Open your phone camera, hold it up to the QR codes below and tap on the link that comes up. Viola. Where did you go? What info did you see? How cool is that?


Imagine the possibilities.

You take your family to the memorial and let them wander around and explore the walls. Teachers bring their students to the Memorial and take them on a tour of our country's history from 1765-1793 using the electronic technology they use hundreds of times a day. We can use these codes in presentations to people or organizations to add a bit of magic. Printed materials can have these codes on them and add them to web sites or newsletters to make a direct link to something you are talking about. Or a direct link to YouTube videos.

This is why the Oregon Revolutionary War Memorial is special, it is interactive and can change as often as we wish.

  • Our new ORWM Treasurer is Dave Witter. If you want to make a contribution to the Memorial, you can write a check for cash, to purchase bricks or coins. Make the check out to ORWM and mail it to:
    Dave Witter 4840 SW Fairhaven Dr. Portland, OR 97221

  • If you want to use your credit card, go to our web site and click on the DONATE button. Here you can order bricks, coins, Patriot sculpture, Wreaths across America and also make a cash donation.

  • Check out the progress of the three new sculptures. Go to our BLOG which is the journal of the sculptor Michael Tieman.

Wednesday, August 19, 2020

Genealogy Aug 19

SAR Compatriot:Eugene Foley
What's in A Name?
I’m a numbers guy.  I still know the phone numbers of my home, my best friend’s home and my dad’s office AND my driver’s license number, from 1969.  But, I have a hard time remembering the names of the people I met with the night before, even though I can tell you what we talked about and what we ate for dinner.  I had a really hard time in some of my classes in law school because I couldn’t remember the names of the cases that set the precedence for arguments, even though I could describe the cases in detail!  But, I could remember codified statutes and regulations by number.  I did fine in the tax and bankruptcy codes.  So, with tens of thousands of names in my Ancestry account, I rely heavily on the matching functions provided by the software!

The software, though, does a “perfect” job of matching names.  Knowing how the software works is important to keep us from over-relying on the machine to make the matches, AND missing matches that would provide a lead.  Name matching, even before computerization, has relied on giving greater weight to matching consonants than to matching vowels.  Using SOUNDEX, systems attempt to match the likely sound of the spoken name as a way of finding matches.  Remember, also, that the matching process may assume English as the language.  So, if names match the formula, even though they are obviously wrong to the researcher, they are on the list.  So, “perfect” ain’t so perfect.

Don’t give up!  If the list is long, your answer may be there.  Filter by dates and locations to pare down the list.  If the short list still doesn’t include a match, change the spelling or sequence of the search words.  Spell out words that might be abbreviations.  Check similar names in work already performed to see if there are other spellings, or other names that might be a better match.

Consider that the name you are searching is a nickname, and substitute other options.  Look to other uses of the name in that family or in that community, for instance Matilda, Mathilda, Mattie, and Maud.  Peggy is a nickname for Margaret.  In older European transcripts, the writers often used Latin naming, so consider changing your English word to its Latin counterpart.  Use your knowledge and imagination!  Here’s a test:  What is this name, “Xpfer.”  The answer is, Christopher.  Chi Rho (looks to us like Xp) was an abbreviation for Christ, and “fer” is phonetic for “pher.”  Throw in a vowel and you get “Christ-o-pher.”  If you hit a wall, take a break.  There are literally millions of people entering their trees into the publicly available systems.  Eventually, someone else may enter the answer you’re looking for.  Most of all, have fun!


Wednesday, August 12, 2020


SAR Compatriot:Eugene Foley
Great Grandpa Charlemagne
I decided to do a face-to-face transaction at my bank.  I had to walk a distance to get to a branch, since the combination of riots and COVID have resulted in the closure of most of the banks downtown.  It was GREAT to get out of my apartment!  The teller (behind two thick layers of Plexiglas) was new at his job, so the adjacent teller and his supervisor were close by to help.  The bank wasn’t busy, so I asked him how he was doing, and he, in turn asked me what I was doing to keep busy.  I told him I was working on my genealogy, and he didn’t offer any particular response.  So, I continued, “Yep, I found that Charlemagne was my ancestor.”  Everyone laughed.

I recently read an article that explained that if your ancestry came out of Europe, chances are that Charlemagne IS your ancestor.  The study was done by a mathematician who calculated the growth and intermixing of the population, and then inverted the calculation to estimate the likelihood that any given person would have been an ancestor.  It turns out that most of us with a strong western European ancestry ARE descendants of Charlemagne…and I have traced (in theory, since the proofs are only relatively accurate) my royal lines to Charlemagne (748-814), and King Ivar Vidfadma of Denmark and Sweden (7thth Century), and Gorrett of Finland (2nd Century)…and others.  By the time y’all hit 37th Great Grandfather there are two probable truths if you believe the statistics: 1) You probably are related to that person, and 2) the tree details that got you there are probably not accurate.

Still, with the relative ease of the genealogical software that is available today (unlike the early days when we spent hours on end, day after day, looking through microfilm and dusty books), it’s a fun search to hit an old line, and run it back through kings, bishops, and scoundrels.  Make it interesting, have some fun.