Like any large genealogy library, the Daughters
of the American Revolution Library has a wide variety of books, newspapers,
magazines, and microfilms. Their collection includes more than 25,000
family histories, genealogies, and local histories and can be searched
The Daughters of the American Revolution Library also has several unique
resources, including their Genealogical Records Committee Reports.
These are sets of records that have been collected for preservation over
the years. They were collected from all fifty states and include a great
variety of records including Bible records, cemetery inscriptions, wills,
and marriage records. If you can't make it to the library itself to use
this card catalog, you will find that much of the information in these
reports has been indexed in the following books:
- The Cemetery Record Compendium by John and Diane Stemmons
- The Vital Record Compendium by John and Diane Stemmons
- An Index to Some of the Family Records of the Southern States
by E. Kay Kirkham
- An Index to Some of the Bibles and Family Records of the United
States by E. Kay Kirkham.
The DAR Library also maintains the membership applications of those who
have joined the Daughters of the American Revolution. Each member's application
shows how they are descended from a Revolutionary War patriot and includes
the sources that the person used to prove their descendancy. For a small
fee, any member or potential member can request
a copy of the application of a deceased ancestor. However, to get
a copy of a current member's application, you must first contact the member
to get their permission.
These membership applications can prove very useful in your research
because they contain names, dates, locations, and sources for the direct
line between the Revolutionary War-era ancestor and the person who submitted
the application. Thus, if you can prove the connection to the person who
made the application, you have an instant jump forward in your research.
of the American Revolution Patriot Index may also be of interest
to anyone who believes that they have Revolutionary War-era ancestors.
This index lists all of the Revolutionary War patriots who have been used
for membership and includes information such as the patriot's birth date,
death date, spouse's name, a few details about their service, and the
names of people who have used the individual to join the Daughters of
the American Revolution. This list is also of interest to researchers
because many of the individuals who participated in the Revolution were
immigrants, so the index may tell you where they came from. In the mid-eighties,
the Daughters of the American Revolution created an additional index that
lists all of the spouses of the patriots in most cases, the patriots'
wives, so it is an excellent source for information about 18th and 19th
Although the Daughters of the American Revolution library is a non-circulating
library, you can order photocopies of microfilm pages, book pages, files,
and membership applications. However, you must find out in advance what
materials you would like copied and then send in a specific request. Keep
in mind that the Patriot Index and some other indexes to Daughters
of the American Revolution materials are available in other genealogy
libraries, so you don't necessarily have to visit to find out what they
have. Check with your local genealogy library or Family History Center.
If you are interested in doing in-depth research in the Daughters of
the American Revolution Library, or wish to have a more detailed overview
of the library, try their 180-page book titled American
Genealogical Research at the Daughters of the American Revolution, Washington,
D.C. It details how you can make the most of the Daughters of
the American Revolution Library for your genealogical research.
What Else Does the Daughters of the American Revolution Do?
In addition to maintaining their library, the Daughters of the American
Revolution has several other functions. They run schools for disadvantaged
children, provide scholarships in the areas of history and medicine, have
historic preservation projects, and work with veteran patients, among many
If you would like to become a member of the Daughters of the American
Revolution, you must be at least 18 years old, and must be able to prove
"lineal, blood line, descent from an ancestor who aided in achieving
American independence." This does not mean that your ancestor must
have been a soldier in the Revolutionary War there are many possible
categories into which your ancestor may fit.
Lest you think that these
activities are limited to adults, note that there is an associated organization
for boys and girls under 18 called the National Society of the Children
of the American Revolution. If you would like to get your children or
grandchildren involved in genealogy and history, this might be a fun
way to start.