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Tuesday, April 22, 2014


Charles Town South Carolina was one of the busiest ports and the fifth largest city in the Colonies during the Revolutionary War.  The British tried to take the city in 1776 but failed and moved on to Savannah Georgia.  Three years later on December 26 1779 Lt. General Henry Clinton left New York with 90 transports, fourteen warships and more than 8,000 troops to gain control of the busy port city.  Six weeks later, on February 11, 1780, British Royal troops were within thirty miles of Charles Town.  In command of the much smaller rebel forces was Major General Benjamin Lincoln of Massachusetts who began preparing the town for a siege. His forces consisted of 3,600 men, 1,100 who were Continental soldiers and 2,500 state militia, and 10 ships including two French ships.  Commodore Abraham Whipple positioned his ships behind a log jam at the entrance to the Cooper River, removed the guns and scuttled the ships to further block the river.  Fifteen hundred additional Continental soldiers arrived on April 7 from Virginia, but more British troops under command of Lord Rawdon swelled their forces by more than 2,000.  The rebels were outnumbered almost 3 to 1.   
On March 29 a heavy fog rolled across the city and the British crossed the Ashley River and within a few days were constructing siege lines.  One week later they passed Ft. Moultrie and were in Charleston harbor. Lieutenant Colonel Banastre Tarleton defeated a small rebel force at Monck’s Corner on April 14, securing the north banks of the Cooper River for the British. The bombardment of the city and the blockade cut off supplies to both the Continental troops and the general population.  Lincoln sent word to Clinton he would evacuate if his men were allowed to leave.  The offer was refused and the battle resumed with heavy artillery booming.  The British began shelling the dam holding water in the defensive line and by May 6 it was nearly empty. The British captured Ft. Moultrie and Clinton called for unconditional surrender of the rebels.
Lincoln again asked for and was again refused evacuation.  The British began even heavier bombardments and the use of “hot shot” that set the city on fire as well as lack of food and water   
forced Lincoln to reconsider terms of surrender.  On May 1, after almost 40 days of fighting, he marched out of Charleston to surrender to Clinton. The Americans suffered 92 deaths, 148 wounded and more than 5,000 soldiers captured, including three men who had signed the Declaration of Independence.  The majority of the prisoners were send to prison barges set up in the harbor, where hundreds died and others suffered disease and malnutrition It was the largest defeat of the War.  Only two other surrenders of American forces are larger, the Fall of Bataan in 1942 and the 1862 Battle of Harpers Ferry.  The British lost 76 men and suffered 182 wounded.  The Battle of Charles Town ended the efforts of the regular Continental forces in the South and gave way to the tactics of men like Francis Marion, Thomas Sumter and Nathanael Greene.  The British sailed back to New York leaving 8,300 troops in the South under the command of General Charles Cornwallis.  On October 19, 1781 General Cornwallis surrendered his troops at Yorktown, sending his second in command, General Charles O’Hara to present his sword.  Refusing to personally accept Washington sent his own deputy, General Benjamin Lincoln, the man who had been forced to accept defeat some 18 months before at Charles Town.
In December 1782 British forces completely withdrew from Charles Town and in early 1783 the city was renamed Charleston.

Posted by Dar member Diane Price

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

May 14, 2014 Chapter Meeting

Go to Winds
Monarch Butterfly in adult stage...Photo taken from

The Brunswick Town Daughters of the American Revolution meeting/luncheon will be on Wednesday, May 14, 2014  at the Cape Fear Country Club, 1518 Country Club Road, Wilmington, NC at 10:00 AM.  The program by Brenda Harriss will be on Monarch Butterflies and Conservation. Ms. Harriss has invited us to visit her Monarch Butterfly garden after lunch.  Please RSVP our regent Jackie Craft for her to have information about the attendance expected. If you plan to attend, RSVP to Jackie Craft at  or call her at (910)755-7563.  If you are interested in becoming a DAR member contact registrar,   Cindy Sellers at .

Monday, April 14, 2014

Awards Ceremony Held at April 9th DAR Meeting

The Brunswick Town Chapter Daughters of the American Revolution held their April 9th meeting at the Atlantic Seafood Restaurant at 10:00. A total of 74 were in attendance, which included 52 members, 3 prospective members and 19 guests. We have 4 applications in D.C. and currently have a total of 121 members.
Fran Carlsen introduced JROTC award winners Cadet Samantha Sparks from South Brunswick High School accompanied by Sgt. Corbett, Cadet Arashay Eaton from North Brunswick High School accompanied by Lt. Col. Hanna and Cadet Alison Childress from West Brunswick High School accompanied by Col. Calisto.  All the students received a certificate and a check for $100.00.

Rhonda Amato introduced Good Citizens’ award winners Katelyn Thomas from North Brunswick High School, Becki Ponds from West Brunswick High School and Quentel Penn from Brunswick Early College High School.  Each student spoke about themselves and their plans for the future and Quentel read his essay.  They were presented with a certificate and a $100.

L to R -- Becki Ponds, Katelyn Thomas, Quentel Penn. 

by Quentel Penn

            Heritage is a collection of lessons learned, passed down from generation to generation in one’s family. Each lesson then becomes an instillment of life knowledge that not only impacts one’s life immediately, but also affects our nation. These teachings forever changes one’s morals and also potentially alters the lives of the next generation to come, therefore; heritage is a shaper of viable citizens in today’s society.
            As an African American my heritage holds sincere value in my life. Growing up in poor conditions, my parents instilled values in me that the generation before them presented them with. My family lineage dates back to the time of the Harlem Renaissance period where Negro identity flourished, and black culture and art was deemed important.  Because of the renaissance period, my family consistently teaches the ideals that were evident during that time. These values consisted of pride in one’s culture, changing lives for the better, and love for the God above. The Harlem Renaissance’s impact on our nation was powerful and changed the way the nation viewed African Americans, consequently; my duty to our nation is to continue to be influential and not only better myself but impact the nation in a positive way by becoming a viable citizen.
            A viable citizen is an individual who follows four important characteristics such as; character, leadership, service, and integrity. These characteristics describe the duties that one has to our nation. My personal heritage teaches service to one’s fellow man, and promotes the betterment of society.  This lesson encourages me to be pro-active and be involved with the community. As National Honor Society President, I promote service in my school community and also in the surrounding communities. In order to complete my duty to our nation I first must be selfless and give back to individuals who are in need.
            Leadership is the ability for one to be in good standing and affect individuals in a positive way. Our nation was founded upon the leadership of our fore fathers who took a stand against the oppression from the King of England, building this great nation as a result of battles lost and wars won. Lessons learned from my heritage have taught me to lead when others will not, and do the right thing when others choose differently.  Leadership and integrity simultaneously works together and allows me to do my duty to our nation, but also enables me to encourage others to do the same as well, such as participating in elections, paying taxes, and following the local and federal laws.
            Of all the four characteristics that my heritage has taught me, character is the most important. Leadership, selflessness, and honesty are the qualities one must possess to obtain great character. Character shaped the Harlem Renaissance, but it also shaped each generation to have called the United States of America home. Character causes me to want to be successful against all odds and complete my duties to my nation. Character also pushes me to exhibit charitable qualities, leadership skills, and honesty when none is present.  I am exceptionally proud of my heritage, and with those lessons I can affect change in my nation.

Betsy Pessetto introduced two women celebrating anniversaries as NSDAR members. Jean Myers celebrated 50 years and Ann Cranford celebrated 25 years.  Each Woman was given a certificate and Jean was given a 50 year DAR pin.

Ann Cranford celebrated 25 years as a member of the DAR.

DAR member Sandra Thomas celebrated 40 years as a member of the DAR this past April. Unfortunately, she was unable to attend the meeting. Congratulations Sandra. She will receive a certificate for her years of membership.
Jean Myers celebrated 50 years as a member of the DAR.
photo edited by photographer John Muuss; Southport, NC

Regent Jackie Craft welcomed District IX Director Linda Rivenbark, who has visited all of the chapters in her district during her term of office. Linda was very impressed with the JROTC candidates and the students receiving the Good Citizens' Awards. She was pleased to see so many members in attendance at the DAR meeting.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

American Indian Minute - April 2014

An American Indian History Quiz

1. Who was President when the Indian Removal Act of 1830 was passed?
2. Why did the US government establish Indian reservations?
3. How many treaties has the US government made with the American Indians?
4. What state has the most American Indian population?
5. What are the top 5 cities with a sizable American Indian population?

Come visit our site tomorrow and the answers will be posted.
As promised here are the answers:
1. Andrew Jackson
2. The government's objective was to rid the country of its "Indian problem" and open land for white settlers.
3. Over 500 treaties have been made; over 500 treaties have been broken. In 1980 the Sioux Nation took the US government to the Supreme Court for violating the Fort Laramie Treaty in which the US acknowledged the Black Hills as the Sioux Homeland and won. Instead of returning the land the Government offered a cash settlement. The Sioux refused and the cash is still sitting in Escrow today. 
4. California - per 2010 census
5. New York, Los Angeles, Phoenix, Oklahoma City and Anchorage

Good Luck
Pat Elsaesser
American Indians Committee Chair

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Orientation Program for New Brunswick Town DAR Members

The Registrar, Membership, Lineage Research Chairwomen  held a New Member Orientation at the home of Jackie Craft Regent of Winding River, NC on April 2, 2014.

Starting on the bottom row and going L-R Carol Jutte, Cindy Sellers, Martha Koletar, Carol Hart, Margaret Dula Row 2:  Sherrill Sykes, Mary Cundiff, Betsy Roberts, Connie Hendrix, Debbie Chittum and behind Debbie is Mo Stankard Row 3:  Lynn Deen, Sandy Kotch, Jane DelRosso-Freach, Pat Tucker, Jane Johnson and in front of Jane is Judy Holden Row 4:  Jackie Craft, Diane Price, Gwen Causey and Elizabeth Harrelson

Jackie Craft is showing a presentation from her computer via the TV monitor to Diane Price, Lineage Chair and Sherrill Sykes, new members and other guests.  

Carol Jutte, Membership Chair referring to the TV.  Seated are Jane Johnson and Elizabeth Harrelson.

New Brunswick Town Chapter  DAR new members Judy Holden, Betsy Roberts and Lynn Deen are enjoying the Orientation Tea at the home of Regent, Jackie Craft. Gwen Causey, NC DAR State Registrar and Brunswick Town Chapter National Defense Chair is standing behind Betsy Roberts.

Monday, March 31, 2014

March DAR Meeting - Special Guest DAR State Regent Peggy Troxell

The March DAR meeting was held at St. James Plantation in Southport, NC at the Reserve Golf Club. Our Brunswick Town Chapter Regent, Jackie Craft introduced Peggy Troxell, NC DAR State Regent, who thanked us for all our volunteer work for the DAR and asked us to continue to participate in the President Generals project Celebrate America.  Total DAR membership at of January 2014 is 177,049 with last year being a record year for new members.  The State Regent’s project of refurbishing two silver candelabras was finished and are in the North Carolina room at headquarters in DC.  The next project is the restoration of a classroom in the Tamassee School.

The program was given by Eric Kozen, Superintendent of the Oakdale Cemetery.  Eric spoke about the history of Oakdale Cemetery and how headstones can help in genealogical research.  The cemetery has several famous people buried there and they give a variety of tours.  

Commemorative Chair Dianna Conaty had a visual display of the Moores Creek Ceremony that seven of our members attended. 
NC DAR State Chairman and  Brunswick Town Chapter Public Relations and Media chair Phyllis Wilson presented an award to Barbara Lawrence who has helped her with graphic design for our chapter pamphlet, which won first place in the state last year and also won SE Division. Barbara also helped design a display panel that Phyllis used at State Conference last year and also at the October, 2013 DAR meeting. Barbara Lawrence is a resident of St. James and a retired graphics arts designer and school teacher from Fairfax County, VA.

Sitting at table from L to R: Sandy Kotch, Pat Tucker, Carol Loop, and Leola Benjamin are new DAR prospective members that just signed their papers:. Standing L to R are:  DAR Brunswick Town Chapter Regent Jackie Craft, NC State Registrar, Gwen Causey, NC State Regent, Peggy Troxell, Chapter registrar, Cindy Sellers

The two ladies in the front are Gwen Causey, NC State Registrar and NC State Regent Peggy Troxell
Back row: Cindy Sellers, Chapter Registrar, Norma Eckard, Chapter Historian, Diane Kuebert, Chapter Chaplain, Pat Gooding, Chapter Treasurer, Cheri Lambert, Chapter Secretary, Betsy Pessetto, Chapter First Vice-Regent and Jackie Craft, Chapter Regent

Friday, March 28, 2014

Happy Birthday Brunswick County

Happy Birthday Brunswick County!
3/17/2014 8:30:00 AM by Amanda Hutcheson
On March 9, 1764, the Governor of North Carolina signed the legislative act that created Brunswick County out of parts of New Hanover and Bladen counties, naming the new county after the Town of Brunswick, itself named in honor of King George I, the Duke of Brunswick and Lunenberg. Brunswick County is 250 years old this month.

The 1764 legislative act was not the first attempt to create a new county. It wasn't even the second. According to Lawrence Lee's book "The History of Brunswick County North Carolina," the first attempt to create a new county named Brunswick from land west of the Cape Fear River came in a failed bill in 1740. Following that failed bill, the area west of the Cape Fear River was created as a separate parish named St. Philips, and several years later, "permission was given to send an elected representative to the General Assembly."

The Ruins of St. Philips Episcopal Church

"Still, the desire for a new county did not die," Lee's book reads. "In 1760 a bill to incorporate that part of New Hanover west of the Cape Fear as a separate county was defeated, as were similar bills in 1761 and 1762. According to the opponents of the measure, most of whom were in Wilmington, the size and population of the proposed new county was not sufficient. Nevertheless, success finally came on March 9, 1764."

They certainly didn't lack for effort.

A few short years later, Brunswick County would play an important role in the lead up to the American Revolution. The 1765 Stamp Act required that stamps of specific amounts be placed on all ship clearance papers and legal papers, amongst other requirements. But when the act took effect, the stamps had not arrived in North Carolina.

Wooden Bridge Across Shallotte River

In January of 1766, three ships entered the Cape Fear River without properly stamped papers, and were seized. "Seven other ships appeared off the mouth of the river, but escaped the same fate by fleeing elsewhere. Without vessels to carry them away, local naval stores were soon clogging the wharves, and the anger of the people was growing. It finally exploded, and the specific issue was the manner of prosecuting the three vessels that had been seized."

But efforts to prosecute the ships for violating the Stamp Act were themselves delayed by the Stamp Act. "The attorney-general of North Carolina ruled that the impending trials could not be held locally because of the lack of stamps which the Stamp Act required for the authentication of the trial papers. The prosecutions would have to be held in far-away Halifax, Nova Scotia."

Brunswick County Court House at Southport

Following the decision to move the trials, nearly one thousand upset residents organized as the "Sons of Liberty" and marched to the governor's residence, informing the governor that they would not permit the enforcement of the Stamp Act. 150 armed men, believing the captain who had seized the ships was in the governor's house, surrounded it and placed the governor under a form of house arrest. The men left after learning that the captain was in fact in Brunswick Town. The ships were later released, and the residents assured that the Port of Brunswick would remain open.

Writing of protests in Boston eight years later, Lee wrote, "Compared to the affair at Brunswick Town in 1765, when men confronted the royal governor face to face, the incident at Boston was hardly a noble deed. Yet the earlier incident has been all but forgotten, while the other has achieved enduring fame as the Boston Tea Party."

After the Revolutionary War and through the early 1800s, there were many plantations and farms in Brunswick County, including rice farms. Other residents lived in the pine forests, some as turpentine farmers. Smithville (known today as Southport) was the only town, and many river pilots lived there.

The Glass Window Schoolhouse Near Supply

Many of the plantation owners did not stay on their plantations in the summer, but many from other areas, especially Wilmington, came to stay in Smithville during the summer months. "The Smithville of that time was quiet and serene, and the friendly spirit that prevailed between the summer and winter people made it a pleasant place. By modern standards, the amusements were simple and innocent. For the older folk, there was satisfaction to be found in the rocking chairs and cool breezes and conversation - perhaps gentle gossip - as well as in the never-ending supplies of fresh fish and oysters. If desired, sailing and fishing and hunting in season were also available. The younger set, however, sought and found a more active life. One of the most popular pastimes was dancing."

But there were parts of life in Smithville that would not seem so foreign to today's Brunswick County residents. A 4th of July celebration was held every year in the town. "It was an occasion of patriotism and merriment, and perhaps the highlight of the day was the banquet generally held and attended by the prominent men from throughout the county. The feast was always closed with a series of toasts." A list of toasts offered at the July 4, 1805 celebration include, in the following order: July 4th, the President of the United States, the Governor of North Carolina, the North Carolina legislature, George Washington, the flag of the United States, the United States Army and Navy, "That the expedition of the United States against the Tripolitans may succeed," "The pine trees, the staple commodity of North Carolina," Smithville founder and promoter Joshua Potts, "The recovery of General Smith and the population of Smithville," "May the wounds received in virtuous causes be speedily healed," "The Land we live in," "May political divisions cease," "The memory of the brave Patriots who fell in the cause of liberty," and "The Fair Sex."

Map from the North Carolina Collection, UNC Library, Chapel Hill, NC

All photos and excerpts from "The History of Brunswick County North Carolina" by Lawrence Lee, Copyright © by Brunswick County