Illness and conflicts put attendance to only five members this month.  Meeting date had to be changed to Nov. 17 and the meeting place also was changed to the First Presbyterian Church in Paris.
     Regent Geraldine Sykes called the meeting to order at 11:00.  In the absence of Chaplain Joy Bland, Registrar Mary Ann Claxton gave a message based on John 4:39 - "And many of the Samaritans of that city believed on Him for the saying of the woman, which testified, He told me all that ever I did."  Mary Ann reminded everyone that words have power - power to hurt, to heal, and to change lives.  We all need to be careful of the words we speak to ensure that we do not hurt others with what we say and try always to uplift and be an example, especially to young people still finding their way in life.
      Following the devotional, Regent Geraldine Sykes led the group in the Pledge of Allegiance, Secretary Frances Spillman led the group in recitation of the American's Creed,
and Janice Webb read the Object of the National Society. 
       Following the ritual Mary Ann gave the National Defense message.  The topic was "What happened to Armistice Day?"  November 11th this year marked the 100th anniversary of the signing of the Armistice with Germany which ended World War I - "The War to end all wars."  Mary Ann noted that the Armistice was only a cessation of hostilities, not the actual ending of the war; that came with the Treaty of Versailles June 28, 1919.  But beginning with November 11, 1919 many countries throughout the world celebrated Armistice Day - also called Decoration Day or Remembrance Day and was a day to remember those who had died in the war.  At the end of World War II, however, the VFW and other organizations pushed to have that day changed to Veterans Day - a day to honor ALL veterans, living and dead.  So on June 1, 1954, President Eisenhower signed the law creating Veterans day on November 11.  Decoration Day had already been celebrated in the US on
the last Sunday in May since before the Civil War, so the practice of specifically remembering the dead soldiers moved to that day and was declared a federal holiday in 1967; that changed to the last Monday in May with the passing of the Uniform Monday Holiday Act in 1968 which went into effect in 1971.
     Following the National Defense Message, Secretary Frances Spillman then read the minutes of the June meeting which were approved with one correction.  We really appreciate the excellent work Frances does. 
Treasurer Beverly Wood then presented the treasurer's report.
    In meeting business, Regent Sykes reminded everyone that officer and committee chairman reports are due to the Chapter Regent by Feb. 1, 2019, and committee chairmen report to the state committee chairmen by Feb. 15.  It was decided that the program for the February meeting would be a presentation of the Colonial Education Kit by State Patriotic Education Committee Chairman Mary Ann Claxton.
       Next was discussion of donations for Veterans projects.  Veterans Committee Chairman Beverly Wood named things that had been done in the past and that we have a $100 donation to be used for veterans.  It was decided that we would contribute to the Wounded Warrior Project but Beverly will check to see where we donate so that the money benefits local veterans' needs.
       After this discussion was announcement of the DAR Christmas Tea
which will be at the home of Ray and Noragene Harding on Saturday,  December 15 from 1 to 3 p.m.  Entertainment will again be provided by the Inman Strings Group.  Chapter members are asked to bring finger foods and be available to greet guests.
       Following the business meeting, Beverly Wood gave a fascinating program on the sinking of the Sultana.  Though it was the greatest maritime disaster in US history, it received little notice in newspapers of the day due to another news story which held the attention the nation:  the killing on the previous day of President Lincoln's assassin, John Wilkes Booth.  The Sultana was a Mississippi river side-wheel steamboat designed to hold 376 passengers.  However, on April 27, 1865, she was carrying 2155, mostly US soldiers who had been prisoners of war, some at Andersonville, and were being released to go back home.  Captain Mason had been approached in Vicksburg by Lt. Col. Reuben Hatch and told that the US government would pay $4 for each enlisted man and $10 for each officer who were transported north.  Mason was in need of money and Hatch hoped for a kickback from Mason and so instead of the anticipated 1400 prisoners, all prisoners from the nearby parole camp were sent for a total of 1,961.  These plus the 70 cabin passengers, 55 guards from the 58th Ohio infantry, and 85 crew members far exceeded design capacity.
       The Sultana had pulled into Vicksburg for repairs on a boiler, but instead of taking the few days needed for a proper repair, Capt. Mason - afraid the prisoners would be sent home on other boats - insisted that the boiler be patched so they could get under way in only one day.  The Sultana then fought one of the worst raging spring floods ever known on the Mississippi River.  The water reached the tops of trees on the banks and flooded lands along the way, reaching 3 miles in width in some places.  The boat pulled into Helena, AR on Apr. 26 where photographer T. W. Bankes took the picture you see here.

The boat then stopped at Memphis to unload 120 tons of sugar after which she started upriver again.  Low water in the boilers and excessive pressure in trying to make headway against the raging water caused one of the boilers to explode followed immediately by two more boiler explosions.  Those who survived the blast and the subsequent fire which consumed the boat were forced into the cold, raging waters.  Weakened from their days in prison many could not hold out and drowned:  bodies floated downriver and were still being found months after, even as far down as Vicksburg.  Some were never found.  About 760 survivors were transported to hospitals in Memphis by various boats that had arrived to help.  Of those survivors, only 6 died on the day of the explosion and another 20 died in the following two months.
       In spite of the enormity of the disaster, for various reasons no one was ever held accountable.  Several different reports of total casualties have been given over the years, but the most recent evidence indicates 1,184 perished with 954 who survived.
       Following the program, the meeting was adjourned.
                         CHAPTER WEBSITE BACK ONLINE
      Technology Chairman Mary Ann Claxton announces that she now has access to the Chapter website and will now be able to update information there.  The site has not been accessible since Rootsweb was taken down back in December 2017, but all accounts have now been brought back online in a more secure format.  Members are encouraged to check the website for updates between meetings.  The site's new address is:

     At the Summer Board meeting we were given forms on ten plaques and grave markers that have been placed by our chapter.  We are to check on each marker, note whether it is still in place, its condition, and current contact information.  Also Mary Whyane Miles reported that the Union City chapter had marked three sites.  Mary Ann Claxton is working on this project and currently has located and/or has pictures for all but one of the markers which is in Union City.  Below is a list of the markers that have been placed.
THE COLUMNS - (G. T. Ingram Home)  Built 1860.  A hospital during Civil War.  Note:  Elizabeth Ingram was a chapter member.  She passed away in 1995 at the age of 102 and her home was donated to the Foundation.  Location:  W. McNeal Street, Bolivar, TN.  Dedicated 12 MAR 1986
FIRST FREE LIBRARY - Jackson's First Free Library.  Built by grant from Andrew Carnegie.  Now The Carnegie Center for Arts.  Location:  305 East College Street, Jackson, TN.  Dedicated 10 NOV 1990.
- Malissa joined the Francis Billingsley Chapter and when the chapter disbanded transferred membership to Col. Gideon Macon Chapter.  She maintained her membership until her death on 18 AUG 1990.  Location:  Maplewood Cemetery, Paris, TN.  Dedicated 9 NOV 1991.
E. W. GROVE HIGH SCHOOL - Built in 1905.  First privately endowed public high school.  First high school in the nation to receive agriculture teaching funds under the Federal Smith Hughes Act, and had the first Future Farmers of America Chapter.  Location:  215 Grove Blvd., Paris, TN.  Dedicated 10 SEP 1994.
PARIS-HENRY COUNTY HERITAGE CENTER - Home of O. C. Barton built in 1914.  Now a museum for cultural and historical activities to enhance the present and future.  Location:  614 N. Poplar St., Paris, TN.  Dedicated 14 SEP 1996.
GRAVE OF ELIZABETH MORGAN MCCUTCHEN - Elizabeth joined the chapter in 1980 and remained a member until her death on October 31, 1997.  Location:  Ridgecrest Cemetery, Jackson, TN.  Dedicated 6 JUN 1998.
GRAVE OF PETER J. SWINK - Peter and wife Malinda operated the Stage Coach.  Location:  George W. Swink land on Tenn. Hwy. 18 at the north city limit of Medon, 12 miles south of Jacksona and just south of the intersection of Riverside Dr. and Main St. in Medon.  Dedicated 12 SEP 1998.
BEMIS UNITED METHODIST CHURCH PARSONAGE - Built by J. M Bemis, founder of Bemis Brothers Bag Company as a home for the first manager of the mill, J. B. Young.  This home was occupied by members of the Young family until 1961, when it was given to the Methodist Conference to be used as a parsonage for the Bemis United Methodist Church.  Location:  Corner of 5th Street and Massachusetts Ave., Bemis, TN.  Dedicated 14 SEP 2002 (marker says 11 NOV 2001).
ROBERT E. LEE ACADEMY FOR THE ARTS - Formerly Robert E. Lee School, it was built in 1893 and added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1988.  Original brick building built in 1848 burned in December 1891 when it was City High School.  In 1892 a movement began to rebuild it and it reopened in September, 1893.  the name change to Robert E. Lee School about 1910 and it remained a school until 1975.  In 2001 the Robert E. Lee School Association took over the building and began restoration.  In 2003 it became the Robert E. Lee Academy for the Arts.  Location: 402 Lee St., Paris, TN.  Dedicated 9 OCT 2011.
- Built in 1896. West Tennessee's oldest working courthouse.  Court - first held in Peter Wall's home in 1821.  A log courthouse built in Clifty in 1823.  Two story brick courthouse erected on this land in 1825 and replaced in 1852.  The county's first murder led to the landmark "State vs. Grainger" case (1830) that set a precedent for self defence as the basis for appeal.  During the Civil War, Confederate military units were organized here in 1860 and also 1861.  Union forces occupied the courthouse in 1862.  Troops were sent from herein WWI and WWI.  Silver dollars donated by citizens are melted in the bell in the tower.  Location:  101 East Washington St., Paris, TN.  Dedicated 21 JUL 2012. 


- Established about 1833.  buried here are families who founded Obion County in 1824.  Located outside of Troy, Obion Co., TN.  Dedicated in 1984.
BETHLEHEM CUMBERLAND PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH - Location:  outside of Union City, Obion Co., TN on Bethelehem Rd.
REELFOOT LAKE - Location:  was located at Air Park Inn on Reelfoot Lake, Lake Co., TN, but Air Park Inn has since been torn down and the marker is now in storage waiting to be installed at Spicer Park in Samburg, Lake Co., TN.  Dedicated 29 MAR 1985.

MT. VERNON METHODIST CHURCH - Location:   three miles west of Sharon, TN.  Organized in 1823 in the log cabin home of John Bradshaw with Reuben Edmonston, Bradshaw's brother-in-law, and a few neighbors.  Marker dedicated March 19, 1982.
NEW SALEM CUMBERLAND PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH - Location:  Sharon, TN.  Organized in 1849, the building that is standing today was built in 1893, one of the oldest landmarks in Weakley Co., TN.  Marker dedicated October 28, 1989.
I have been frustrated recently in trying to find free pedigree chart forms which could be filled out online and then saved to my computer.  Sites let you fill out the form, but, though you can print it out, you can't save it, or they want money to let you save it.  So I have created a 5 generation pedigree chart form in MS Word which you can download from this site, save to your computer, and use as many times as you want to.  Blanks are provided in the form where you can type in the information - just like on other online forms - but you can save this to your computer, and even print out a blank form if you need to.  This is the link to the form.  If you have any questions, feel free to e-mail me (see Chapter Web Design e-mail link below)

Geraldine Sykes (Mrs. Terry), Regent
Roberts (Mrs. James G.), First Vice Regent
Joy Bland (Mrs. Bobby), Chaplain
Frances Spillman, Recording Secretary
Mary Ann Claxton
(Mrs. Tommy E.), Registrar
Wood, (Mrs. Thomas C., Sr.), Treasurer
Berdie Mae Foy
(Mrs. Bill), Historian
Stephanie Tayloe, (Mrs. Samuel Albert) Librarian

American Indian Scholarship, Joy Bland (Mrs. Bobby)
Archival Records Preservation, Staphanie Tayloe (Mrs. Samuel Albert)
College of the Ozarks, Mary Whayne Miles  (Mrs. Charles, III)
Colonial and Genealogical Records, Stephanie Tayloe (Mrs. Samuel Albert)

Colonial Courier, Beverly Wood (Mrs. Thomas C., Sr.)
Flag of the United States of America,

Golden Acorns, Mrs. Cheryl Markum
Historic Landmarks and Memorials, Patsy Weatherington (Mrs. D. B.)
Insignia, Geraldine
Sykes (Mrs. Terry)
National Awards, Pat
Boals (Mrs. H. Ansil)
National Defense, Mary Ann Claxton (Mrs. Tommy E.)
National Headquarters, Mary Whayne
Miles (Mrs. Charles, III)
Patriotic Education, Regina East (Mrs. Bob D.)
Public Relations, Aline Roberts (Mrs. James G.)
Resolutions, Pat Boals (Mrs. H. Ansil )
Technology and Newsletter, Mary Ann Claxton (Mrs. Tommy E.)
Veterans Service, Beverly
Wood (Mrs. Thomas C., Sr.)

Chapter meetings are  held at Tom's Pizza & Steak House in Paris, TN the 2nd Saturday in:
September, November, and February

87th Tennessee State Assembly: 
March 7, 2019 at the Doubletree Hotel in Murfreesboro, TN

98th General Assembly:  April 7-10, 2019, Embassy Suites, Alexandria, VA

Tennessee State Summer Board: 
August 8, 2019, Doubletree Hotel, Murfreesboro, TN



Chapter Newsletters

Presented at the 86th Annual State Assembly, March 1, 2018

Chapter Pictures

Most money donated - College of the Ozarks

Chapter Ancestors (of current chapter members)

S2nd Place - number of The Colonial Courier subscriptions

Chapter Awards

Most articles published in The Colonial Courier

Chapter Activities Most picture published in The Colonial Courier

Chapter Markers

Most publicity for 2017

Online 5 Gen. Pedigree chart   (saves to your computer - free!)

Placing flags at Vietnam Moving Wall

Use of Medals for Meritorious Service (ROTC Award)

Patriot Education Program for Children

Dedication of Reelfoot Marker

State Regent Project Focus on community Awareness of DAC Reelfoot Lake Marker - State Regent - Linda L. Mansur

Donation to the Headquarters Maintenance Fund

Outstanding support of the TN State Veterans Home, Humboldt

Best Chapter Website - Linda L. Mansur - Technology Chairman

To Mary Ann Claxton in recognition of Service to the TN State Society as State Chairman, The Colonial Courier 2015-2018 - Linda Mansur, State Regent

To Joy Bland, in recognition of Service to the TN State Society as State Chairman, American Indian Scholarship

Presented at the 97th General Assembly, April, 2018


On January 17, 1981, the Col. Gideon Macon Chapter of the National Society Daughters of the American Colonists was formed in the home of Mrs. John B. Nuckolls (Nell) in Jackson, TN with 12 organizing members.  The organization, whose purposes and objectives are historical, patriotic and educational, was named for a colonial ancestor of Mrs. Nuckolls, Gideon Macon, who came to Virginia in 1642. He was a landowner, a member of the Virginia House of Burgesses and the private secretary of Gov. William Berkley of Virginia. He was also an Indian interpreter for the colonial government of Virginia and is the Macon for whom Randolph-Macon College is named.

            Officers and organizing members of the new chapter were: Nell Nuckolls, Organizing Regent; Elizabeth McCutchen, First Vice Regent; Louise Dickson, Second Vice Regent; Jewel Tinker, Chaplain; Linda Watkins, Recording Secretary, Patricia Brake, Corresponding Secretary; Louise Wilder; Registrar; Josephine Murphy, Treasurer; Ona Jones, Historian; and Louise Crawford, Librarian. Other members were Sarah Brewer and Martha Woodberry.

            This chapter has marked more historic sites than any other chapter in Tennessee. When the Union City and the Isaac Dawson chapters merged with Col. Gideon Macon Chapter, it became the largest chapter in Tennessee.


"The object of this Society shall be Patriotic, Historical, and Educational; to make research as to the history and deeds of the American colonists, and to record and publish the same; to commemorate deeds of colonial interest; to inculcate and foster love of America and its institutions by all its residents; to obey its laws and venerate its flag - the emblem of is power and civic righteousness."

- NSDAC Bylaws, Article II


Requirements for membership in the DAC include documenting an ancestor who was an actual resident of this country and who served prior to July 4, 1776 in any of 26 different capacities.  To learn more about DAC and how to become a member, go to Contacts heading and click on National Society Daughters of American Colonists.


National Society Daughters of the American Colonists

Tennessee State Society Daughters of the American Colonists

Col. Gideon Macon Chapter TSSDAC: 
Regent Email                     Web design

ŠNSDAC Insignia and Emblem property of the National Society of the Daughters of the American Colonists

Web hyperlinks to pages outside our website are not the responsibility of Col. Gideon Macon Chapter TSSDAC, TSSDAC, or NSDAC

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