Helen Staley hands Paul Chouinard, President of th Danville Historical Society, one of the volumes from the library.
By Sharon Lakey, Director
A rainy day in May was the perfect opportunity to light the fire at the Historical House in Danville where a meeting, luncheon and gift of a lineage library transpired. Helen Staley, chapter president of the National Society Daughters of Founders and Patriots of America, was pleased to present the gift to Danville Historical Society president, Paul Chouinard. Also present for the celebration was the National Society President, Donna Chilton Derrick, from San Diego.
Below is the speech given by Helen that explains more about the society. It is Helen’s belief that there are likely more residents in our area that would match the lineage requirements to become members of the group, and encourages people to look into their own lineages. At present, three members from Danville have documented their lineage and are included in the volumes: Thelma Hartshorn (Volume 41, a future printing); Luella Sanborn Kirker, volume 39; and Helen Ross Staley, volume 38.
“The Northeast Kingdom Chapter of the National Society Daughters of Founders and Patriots of America is giving a set of their Lineage Books, volumes 26 through 40, to the Danville Historical Society.
“The NSDFPA is a hereditary society made up of women, unique because eligibility requires that in an unbroken line is an intermediate PATRIOT ancestor who gave military or civil service in establishing American independence between 1775 and 1784.
“This 112-year-old small society aids the military in times of war and promotes genealogical, historical and patriotic projects. Printed volumes of proven lineages of society members, published every 500 new members, are placed in libraries throughout the United States. Each lineage gives valuable known birth, marriage and death dates and the colonies or states in which these occur, along with the references from which they were extracted. This information is invaluable to genealogical researches.
“Also included is an Index of Lineage Books, Volumes 1 through 34, labeled: ‘Founders and Patriots of America Index.’ The project of DFPA National President, Donna Chilton Derrick, during her three-year administration is to collate and print DFPA Index to Lineage Book Volumes 35 through 40, a copy of which we will give to the Danville Historical Society.
“The Northeast Kingdom Chapter was organized in 2006 and chartered in 2007 with 14 members, including locally: Thelma Hartshorn, whose PATRIOT, Aaron Hartshorn was in Danville before the conclusion of the Revolutionary War; Luella Sanborn Kirker, whose patriot’s son, Jonathan Hobbs Sanborn was in Tampico, North Danville, about 1780-1790; and Helen Ross Staley’s patriot’s son, Jonathan Ross was in Waterford in 1792. Other chapter members’ Founders and Patriots were from the colonies or states of New Hampshire, Connecticut, Massachusetts Bay, New Haven and Maryland.”
I couldn’t help but wonder how this library might help those who have no chance of matching the lineage guidelines for this organization. Personally, my side of the family has no long roots in America, but recently my husband reopened his family tree folder, and there is one man who does. On his mother’s side, John Clay, known as the British Grenedier, captained a ship to Jamestown. At least, that was the information he had gleaned from family notes and the Internet. Thinking I might find that man in the library, I looked in the Index. There, I found an entry for him that sent me to Volume XXIV, 187.
The short entry in that volume reads: “John Claye, son of Sir John Clay of Wales, came from England in ship “Treasurer” in 1613. Resided in Charles City, Virginia in 1624, finally settled near Jamestown, Virginia. Married Ann, who came in the ‘Ann’ in 1623.”
Now, that was interesting!