If you’re going
• What: Sons of the American Revolution information meeting
• When: 6:30 p.m. Thursday
• Where: Northside Hospital-Forsyth Bennett Education Center, 1200 Northside Drive
• Cost: Free
• For more information, call Allen Greenly at (404) 788-8824.
History and community service will soon come together in a new Forsyth County civic organization.
Members of the Roswell chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution are working to create a branch in Cumming.
Allen Greenly, chairman of the formation committee, said an informational meeting for anyone interested in learning more about the new chapter will be at 6:30 p.m. Thursday in the Northside Hospital-Forsyth Bennett Education Center.
Sons of the American Revolution is a “lineage group,” meaning members must be able to document their family ties to someone who was a patriot or supplied the American cause during the Revolution. But Greenly said Thursday’s meeting is open to anyone.
“Even if they’re not sure, but their interested in the group, we’d love to have them Thursday,” he said, noting that members come from a wide range of backgrounds.
Greenly said prospective members don’t have to have a strong interest in history to participate.
“It’s not that they have to be a history buff,” he said. “But it’s kind of a source of pride to know, ‘Hey, my great-, great-, great-, great-grandfather fought in the Revolution.’”
The organization provides a wide range of community service opportunities for members.
Greenly said those include working with JROTC students in local high schools, with veterans’ organizations such as the American Legion, and with elementary and middle school students.
He said the organization offers several poster and essay contests for students of various ages, including one that’s just for Eagle Scouts.
Other activities include educating the public about Revolutionary times.
“We have a thing called the Traveling Trunk that we take around,” he said. “We go into schools and places like assisted living communities and give demonstrations on the utensils and tools that people used back in the Colonial times.”
The organization also helps people with genealogical projects, and participates in activities such as parades, community festivals and grave upkeep for veterans.
Greenly said the Cumming chapter will also cover the cities of Johns Creek and Dawsonville.
“[The monthly] meetings last about an hour to an hour and a half,” he said. “We always have a guest speaker and we try to have a meal together.”
As for the lineage aspect of the group, Greenly said Cumming’s Bell Research Center, located inside the historic Cumming school house at 101 School St., is a good place to start if someone is unsure if he qualifies for membership.
“They have a whole section on the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812 and you can actually look up and see if your ancestor is listed,” he said.
Another way to know if someone qualifies for membership is to see if he has a female family member who was a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution, Greenly said.
Greenly noted the Roswell chapter includes about 40 members who live in the Forsyth County area.
“It’s a lot of fun, it really is,” he said. “We give [members] all kinds of different avenues that they can use for volunteering.”