On a personal note: My mother never joined the DAR because of the 1939 incident, even though she was able to prove Revolutionary War ancestry. She just didn’t want to belong to a “snob” group (her word). She was proud of the “plain old folks” in our ancestry. However, I do believe that the DAR has changed for the better since then, even to the point of celebrating our newest, naturalized citizens. The following press release shows this.
WASHINGTON, April 10 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — The National Society Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) is truly honored to celebrate the life, the talent and the legacy of world-renowned soprano Marian Anderson on this 70th anniversary of her historic concert on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial.
On April 12, 2009, the DAR will join with the Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission and others in paying tribute to Marian Anderson and the momentous 1939 event in a concert at the Lincoln Memorial. The concert will take place at 3:00 p.m. and features musical performances by Denyce Graves, Sweet Honey in the Rock and the Chicago Children’s Choir. The concert will conclude with a naturalization ceremony. DAR is delighted to be hosting a reception at its National Headquarters for those involved with the tribute concert and the newly-naturalized citizens. We thank the Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission for allowing us the opportunity to join in the celebration of this important event.
The DAR deeply regrets that Marian Anderson was not given the opportunity to perform her 1939 Easter concert in Constitution Hall because of her race. Today, however, we join with all Americans in paying tribute to her memory and commemorating such a pivotal event in the struggle for racial equality.
DAR welcomed Marian Anderson to Constitution Hall on a number of occasions soon after 1939, including a benefit concert for war relief in 1943. It is also meaningful to us that Ms. Anderson chose Constitution Hall as the place to launch her farewell American tour in 1964. The DAR presented Ms. Anderson with the DAR Centennial Medallion in 1992 which recognizes women who gave outstanding service to the nation. In 2005, DAR was privileged to host the dedication ceremony of the Marian Anderson commemorative stamp at the invitation of the United States Postal Service and Ms. Anderson’s family.
Today, Constitution Hall is a venue used by numerous, diverse groups who bring major entertainment to Washington, D.C. DAR enthusiastically welcomes all women into membership who can trace their lineage to someone who contributed to American Independence, and encourages and celebrates diversity, not only in the organization, but also in our country.
For more information on the DAR and Marian Anderson, please visit the DAR public Web site at www.dar.org/mariananderson.
Source: Daughters of the American Revolution
CONTACT: Bren Landon of DAR, +1-202-572-0563, firstname.lastname@example.org
Web Site: http://www.dar.org/
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