Sons of the American Revolution
It’s not every day you see grown men in doublets with padded shoulders, breeches and a colonial army caps. When you do, there’s usually a good reason. The men clad in these colonial uniforms are members of the Color guard of the Sons of the American Revolution (SAR), an organization composed of lineal descendants of American Revolutionary soldiers.
With members of all ages, SAR is more than just an entry in the Fourth of July parade or a chance for guys to get together and talk about guns and war. These men, stationed locally and internationally, have a purpose. Their objective: to ensure that the struggles endured by our country’s founders are never forgotten.
Perpetuating the stories of patriotism, courage and sacrifice of the men who achieved America’s independence is their mission. Educating younger generations about the importance of the values behind the American Revolution is their goal.
“These men and women paid a very dear price,” says Wayne Nash, president of the local chapter of SAR, “It’s hard for me to understand their motivation. Their desire to be free was so strong they were willing to die for it. It’s a motivation and willingness unmatched by many people today.”
To date SAR consists of over 26,000 members in over 500 chapters in the United States, Canada, France, Germany, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. There are three chapters in Oklahoma, including the 84 members of the Oklahoma City chapter.
For Pendleton Woods, one of the original members of SAR’s Oklahoma Color guard, there’s a sense of pride that comes from wearing the uniform. “There is absolutely a tremendous amount of pride. I spent 41 years in the military, and I have great admiration not only for the uniform, but also for the men who endured so much for our freedoms,” he explains.
Woods elaborates on the importance of remembering what the young American Army overcame during the darkest months of the war. “It was the winter of 1777, at Valley Forge, and men from 13 colonies were fighting together. We didn’t have an army. We didn’t even have a country or government. These men fought for what was right and it was during this winter that the momentum turned from losing the war to winning,” he said.
All members of SAR, as well as members of the Color guard, submit themselves to a genealogical process to determine authenticity. “It’s not difficult to determine if you had an ancestor who helped secure our freedom in the Revolutionary War.
Nash sums it up best when he refers to the most important reason for the existence of SAR: “May we always try to maintain a close understanding of the reasoning and the motivations of the men who sacrificed everything to give us the freedoms we enjoy today.”