April is a month of remembrance for UDC members and all Confederate descendants. The firing on Fort Sumter was on April 12, 1861, Lee surrendered at Appomattox on April 9, 1865 and the first Memorial Day to the Confederate dead was observed on April 26, 1866. Today, in Alabama, the entire month of April is dedicated to recognizing and honoring the history of the Confederate States of America. We commemorate Confederate History and Heritage month with luncheons, grave marker dedications and many memorial events. Please remember to honor your Confederate Veterans at all times and especially this month.
On Saturday, April 26, 2014 at 11:00 a.m. the CofC will present their Confederate Memorial Day commemoration at Confederate Memorial Park. I urge you all to attend and support our leaders of tomorrow, our Children of the Confederacy.
Good news! The memorial flagpole at Confederate Memorial Park was ordered, installed and ready just in time to be dedicated during Confederate History and Heritage Month. Everyone is invited to join us for the dedication on April 26, 2014 at 2:00 p.m. Invitations have been sent to all chapter presidents; please share this information with your members.
This project was approved at the 2013 Convention in Florence and a committee was appointed to oversee it. A special thank you goes to the members of the Confederate Memorial Park Committee: Mary Ellen Ahlstrom, Christine Smith, Mary Ann Harrison, Erma Dennis and Margaret Hayden who worked with Confederate Memorial Park Director, Bill Rambo, to complete this project.
Alabama Division UDC Confederate Memorial Day commemoration will be held at the Alabama State Capitol on April 28, 2014 at 10:00 a.m. The speaker will be Mark Thomey of Blountsville. There will be Confederate music and of course the “Roll Call of Honor” for our ancestors.
The 2014 District Meetings are now a memory. Each meeting was unique but all were very good and enjoyable. I would like to thank each District Director and host chapter for a job well done. And, I send my congratulations to the newly elected District officers for 2014-2016.
I commend the Letitia Ross District for marking the grave of their District’s namesake, Mrs. Letitia Dowdell Ross, with a UDC Member Grave Maker. It was a lovely ceremony. The family was so appreciative and it was nice to hear them tell stories of their “Aunt Lettie.” The weather was windy and it threatened to rain, but the sun came out just in time for a perfect ceremony.
In the summer of 2013, we were saddened by the death of Mrs. Elizabeth Black, Alabama Division Honorary Life President. Because of the loss of Mrs. Black, we have a vacancy and we will be electing a new Honorary Life President at the 2014 Division Convention. Please follow the guidelines in Article VII of the Alabama Division Bylaws for making your nominations. Nominations should be mailed to all members of the Executive Committee by June 18, 2014.
As Joe and I were driving to General Spring Board we decided to visit Winchester, Virginia where Stonewall Jackson’s winter headquarters was located 1862-1863. We were unable to take the tour of the house as it is closed during the winter months. But we were able to visit the Alabama Monument in Jackson Cemetery which was placed during Mrs. Venie Payne’s term as Alabama Division President. We braved the cold, it was “only” 9° that day, to read the names on the monument and pay tribute to the men buried there that were from Alabama.
There are a number of important and interesting things that were announced at Spring Board. I have listed a few of the items below that I thought you might want to know.
A committee was approved to study the procedures for handling the Engraved Emblem for a Member Grave Marker. There is no form available at this time, but you can order the design by sending a check for $10.00 made payable to Treasurer General UDC, the name and address of the monument company that you plan to use and your contact information to the Division Grave Markers Chairman, Pat Richter. After processing the order she will send it to General’s Grave Markers Chairman, and then a letter will be sent to you and your monument company allowing a one-time use of the UDC emblem.
There will be 3 new rituals in the near future: Graveside Service for Members, Bridging CofC to UDC (transfer) and presenting a Supplemental Certificate.
A new Junior ROTC Committee was appointed. They are designing a medal similar to the Armed Force’s Expeditionary Medal for chapter presentations. Qualifications will be announced at a later date.
There is a new poetry contest through the General Southern Literature and Arts Committee. It is called the “Father Abram Joseph Ryan Poetry Contest and Award.” A copy of the guidelines was included the President’s packet at Spring Board; it is not on the website yet. This is a General award.
In UDC Love,
Donna Clark, President
Alabama Division UDC
Remember our 26th Alabama Infantry Flag Conservation Project. You can Adopt-A-Soldier of your choosing and Pack-A-Backpack. Go to the Alabama Division website, then Projects, for details on how you can help preserve our heritage.
Also, under Projects, you will find details on “Vanishing Confederate Alabama.” Your assistance is needed with this project.
For information concerning reservations for the 119th Annual Alabama Division Convention, September 18-20, 2014, please go to the Alabama Division website, then Division Convention.
IMPORTANT DATES TO REMEMBER:
Confederate Memorial Day at the Capitol in Montgomery: April 28, 2014
CofC events at Confederate Memorial Park:
Memorial Day – April 26, 2014
Division Convention – June 14, 2014
119th Annual AL Division Convention: September 18-20, 2014; Embassy Suites Hotel Montgomery