For the City Times
PLOVER — Hope Hotchkiss Niedling was the honored guest at the anniversary celebration of Nay-osh-ing Chapter, DAR on Saturday, Feb. 10 at Rookie’s Banquet Hall.
Forty-five years earlier, she had gathered women whose ancestors had rebelled against British governance of its American colonies for its first meeting. The chapter name was chosen because it was of historical significance in this area. As a Chippewa word meaning “the Point,” it refers to a point on the bank of the Wisconsin River where Native Americans could cross the river on foot because an underwater rock ledge stretches across the river, causing a pattern of ripples in the water that identified the “nay-ŏsh-ing.”
The 17 charter members of the chapter were: Niedling, Doris (Mrs. Dale) Travis, Lavonia (Mrs. Robert) Young, Alice (Mrs. Chester) Loberg, Miss Carmen Barnes, Susan (Mrs. Roderick) Larsen, Marguerite (Mrs. G. D. Van Etten), Miss Winifred Harvey, Lila (Mrs. Carl) Graves, Audrey (Mrs. Charles) Dean, Rachel (Mrs. Walter) Malick, Donna (Mrs. Joseph) Raubal, Alice (Mrs. Raymond, Schull, Susie (Mrs. Clarence) Baggett, Arlene (Mrs. Paul) McLarnan, Mary (Mrs. Russell) Swanson and Cornelia (Mrs. John) Ohleson.
Chapter Regent Shannon Moore opened the celebration, introducing Ralph Hopfensperger, who brought greetings and congratulations on behalf of the Sons of the Revolution in the State of Wisconsin and served as the photographer. The event was attended by members, their husbands, and a prospective member.
Descendant to Ancestor Research (DAR) was the theme chosen by Susan Hopfensperger, Nashville, Tennessee, for her address. Hopfensperger is a Volunteer Field Genealogist for the DAR. Citing herself as an example, Hopfensperger said that many women don’t realize that they have a revolutionary heritage. She had grown up thinking that all of her ancestors were fairly recent German immigrants but genealogical research revealed that a descendant of German immigrants had married a girl having English roots that extended far back into the history of this country. Hopfensperger has now documented Eastman, Knight, and Philbrick men as patriots. Eastman and Philbrick may have descendants who still live in the Central Wisconsin area.
Nay-osh-ing DAR presently consists of 22 members who range from 23 to 95 years of age. They have documented their descent from 30 different patriots, two providing civil service, thirteen providing patriotic service in the form of providing financial support, skills, or supplies to the troops, and the rest providing military service. Some responded to the Lexington Alarm, served at Bunker Hill, with Washington’s Army at Valley Forge, and in local militia units or as members of the Continental troops. The oldest of the chapter’s ancestors to sign the Association Test was Benjamin Philbrick Sr., who was 70 years of age in 1776. The youngest was Thomas Eastman at the age of 21 years, who also became a member of the Continental Army. Five of the chapter’s patriot ancestors lived into their 90s. One is known to have died while in service and others died during the war years.
“Each of us is descended from a colonist who was determined, took action, and gladly took responsibility for his rebellion against British rule,” Hopfensperger said “Though not as well documented for posterity, many of their mothers, wives, and sisters undoubtedly did the same.”
In a past chapter anniversary address, she also described Nay-osh-ing chapter members as determined, active, and responsible. She stated, “It’s part of our heritage.”
Many more individuals qualify for Patriot status than the DAR has in its databases today because those databases represent only patriots whose female descendants have been accepted into DAR membership. Formerly unrecognized patriots are being proven daily. Chapter members Susan Hopfensperger, Fran Neilitz, Hope Niedling, and Shannon Moore have each proven the service of at least one new DAR ancestor.
The DAR Genealogical Research System (GRS) is a free online resource provided by the National Society DAR. With DAR constantly reviewing proof documents submitted with applications for membership, the database is updated nearly daily. Any woman 18 years of age or older, regardless of race, religion or ethnic background, who can prove lineal descent from someone who provided service or direct assistance in achieving independence between the Lexington Alarm in April of 1775 and the final withdrawal of British troops late in 1783 is eligible for membership in the Daughters of the American Revolution.
Any woman 18 years of age or older, regardless of race, religion or ethnic background who can prove lineal descent from a patriot of the American Revolution is eligible for membership in the DAR. Additional information about Nay-osh-ing Chapter, Plover, is available from Shannon Moore, Regent, 715-498-0912, email@example.com or Susan Schultz Hopfensperger, Registrar at 615-662-3486 firstname.lastname@example.org