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On-Ti-Ora Chapter History

Nestled in the foothills of the Catskill Mountains, the On-Ti-Ora Chapter was organized April 10, 1926, by Jessie VanVechten Vedder (Mrs. Henry). The name "On-Ti-Ora" is a Mohican Indian name meaning "Mountains of the Sky". Mrs. Vedder also was the founder of the Greene County Historical Society (link on the Related Links page) and as the founder, she was honored by having the Bronck House Museum's Library named after her (Vedder Library). Our chapter was instrumental in marking the Vedder Library, and the historical Kykuit Point. Kykuit Point was a key lookout point during the burning of Kingston, New York (original New York State Capital) on October 16, 1777. British troops invaded Kingston and torched over 300 homes, barns and other buildings in their attempt to win the Revolutionary War. As a geographic lookout spot, Kykuit was key in allowing residents of Catskill to prepare for the onslaught of British Troops.

Chapter Officers

1st Vice Regent
Mrs. James Katt
Recording Secretary
Wanda A. Traver
Corresponding Secretary
Laura L. Rutkowski
Mary F. Hoyt
Registrar*(contact for chapter membership)
Mary F. Hoyt
Sylvia S. Magin

Nancy M. Hilscher

We proudly join our beliefs with the New York State DAR Theme:

"Celebrate the Empire State

“I will make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and I will give your descendants
all this land I promised them, and it will be their inheritance forever.”   ~Exodus 32:12-14

"O Lord, how manifold are your works! In wisdom you have made them all...
I will sing unto the LORD as long as I live.”    ~ Psalm 104

The American's Creed
I believe in the United States of America as a government of the people, by the people, for the people, whose just powers are derived from the consent of the governed; a democracy in a Republic; a sovereign nation of many sovereign States; a perfect Union, one and inseparable; established upon those principles of freedom, equality, justice and humanity for which American patriots sacrificed their lives and fortunes. I therefore believe it is my duty to my country to love it, to support its constitution, to obey its laws, to respect its flag, and to defend it against all enemies. - William Tyler Page

We strive to promote the National Society  DAR Theme:

"Preserve the Past, Enhance the Present, Invest in the Future."

"And now these three remain: faith, hope and love.
But the greatest of these is love." — 1 Corinthians 13:13

"...what does the Lord require of you but to do justice,
to love kindness and to walk humbly with your God." — Micah 6:8

And by following the above, we encourage all eligible students within our chapter area to participate in the essay contests in the following areas: American History (grades 5-8); Flag Day (grades 5 & 6); Outstanding Teacher of American History (grades 6-12). We also promote this prestigious award - the DAR Good Citizens Contest (grade 12). As a DAR Good Citizen winner, your name is entered into the NY State Good Citizen contest (winning prize $250.00). Upon winning the State level, you are entered into national competition (worth $3,000.00).

And the following poem was created and presented to our chapter by Florence R. Bishop
(the chapter's 100th member-November 1969):

Aims of the DAR
“The DAR Gals” are a busy troup,
They work together in a lively group,
Their patriotism is very well known,
Their love of country is often shown.
Their projects are many and very varied,
They help the Indians whose lives are harried,
Good citizenship they try hard to promote,
To help all others from shores remote.
Our rich heritage they hope to preserve,
And in so doing, their country they serve,
Conservation they hardily recommend,
So that the beauty of wild life shall never end.
Liberty for all they lustily cry,
Education too, for all the “Small Fry,”
They believe in our country so very great,
And tales of its history they proudly relate.©

Past Regents

Mrs. Henry Vedder
Mrs. William Davis
Mrs. Charles Moore
Mrs. Herbert Cooper
Mrs. William Kleeman
Mrs. Frank Pflegl
Mrs. Arthur C. Davis
Mrs. Lindsay B. Chalmers
Mrs. Theodore Rivenburgh
Mrs. Merritt E. Tilley
Mrs. Alfred DiCaprio
Mrs. Herbert Dratz
Mrs. Rosemary Byron
Miss Jacqueline F. Post
Mrs. George E. Schmidt
Mrs. Charles W. Link
Mrs. Paul W. Dichian
Mrs. William T. Conine
Ms. Marilyn Schrader
Mrs. Lyle C. Post
Miss Shirley M. Overbagh
Mrs. Maurice Brandow
Mrs. Peter G. Hoyt
Mrs. Woodrow R. Freese
Mrs. James H. Katt
Ms. June Houghton
Mrs. David Rutkowski

If interested in joining our chapter, please contact Mrs.Woodrow R. Freese. As our registrar, she can help you obtain the necessary membership forms and verify their proper completion. She also can point you in the right direction for any genealogy research needed. We look forward to meeting you!

The DAR Insignia is the property of, and is copyrighted by,
the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution.

Web hyperlinks to non-DAR sites are not the responsibility of the NSDAR,
the state organizations, or individual DAR chapters.