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Ohio Society News Archive

Spring 2012 Bulletin

The Ohio Society continued its active ways during the second half of 2011; holding three luncheon meetings at the Cleveland Yachting Club and two at the Cleveland Skating Club. Speakers at the former included John C. Cimperman discussing his new book, Erie Street Cemetery, and the history of many early Cleveland residents buried there; Thomas M. Harper, past OH Governor reviewing his new book, Rocky River, OH, Where the River Ends; and prospective member Thomas M. Stickney, Esq., son of our Associate John M. Stickney, reporting on the Cleveland "Flats" area at the mouth of the Cuyahoga River entering Lake Erie and its importance in the early development of the settlement of the city.

In November we joined with The Early Settlers Association of the Western Reserve, The New England Society of Cleveland and the Ohio Branch of the National Society of Sons and Daughters of the Pilgrims at luncheon. Gov. Bourne gave the invocation - reading President Lincoln's Gettysburg Address exactly 148 years to the day of the original. Well known historian and author of several books on Cleveland and Ohio history John Vacha spoke and showed pictures about the Great Lake Exposition held in Cleveland in 1936 & 37. Our second gathering at the Skating Club was our annual December Christmas luncheon.

After our organizational meeting in January to plan for the upcoming year, we joined approximately two dozen other lineage and patriotic organizations at the Shaker Heights Country Club to celebrate George Washington's 280th Birthday. Following the luncheon meal, David C. Wilmot was sworn both into our Order by Gov. Bourne and into SAR, by Western Reserve Society Pres. Zackary Hoon. The speaker was, Pulitzer Prize winner Jim Sheeler, Professor of Journalism and Media at Case Western Reserve University, spoke and showed pictures relating to his book Final Salute about a U.S. Marine Casualty Assistance Calls Officer and the families he assisted who had lost a loved one in Iraq.

Fall 2011 Bulletin

The Ohio Society held five Society meetings during the first half of 2011; usually at the Cleveland Skating Club and once at the Cleveland Yacht Club. At our January meeting Past Governor General John M Bourne was again sworn in as Ohio Governor.

The Ohio Society - Lt to Rt:   New Associates John A Gibbs, James A Latham, David B Foster, Steven R KelleyHe in turn swore in the other Ohio officers. In addition to our regular meetings, we joined with more than a dozen other lineage and patriotic organization in February at the Shaker Heights Country Club to celebrate George Washington's 279th birthday. Patrick Jolly, 5th great grandson of Patrick Henry, spoke in colonial dress to nearly 200 guests on "Patrick Henry recalls George Washington."

Our March meeting was highlighted by the swearing in and giving rosettes to four new Associates. Speaker Tom Barrett gave a slide presentation on the history of the numerous bridges spanning the Rocky River, west of Cleveland, and their effect on the growth of the Ohio Western Reserve. In May, Deputy Governor Sam Hartwell represented the Society in presenting our wreath at the annual Memorial Day ceremony at the Lakeview Cemetery.

On that same weekend, our Governor represented Ohio at the Order's 115th General Court, held at Fraunces Tavern in NYC. In June the Governor hosted the Ohio officers and councilors at a luncheon at his home for an informal future planning session.

Spring 2011 Bulletin

The Ohio Society had some interesting speakers to finish up the second half of 2010. In October Anne Sindelar, head of the Western Reserve Historical Society Library gave a talk at the Cleveland Skating Club about the facilities and services the Library provides to our associates and other researchers. Governor General John Bourne presented a $500.00 check from the Ohio Society to Ann to help the library purchase new research equipment.

The library holds all of our past Society records for preservation. John Bourne on June 26, presented the Society wreath at the dedication of a Revolutionary Soldier, John Shepherd, in North Royalton, Ohio. John Shepard was the longest lived soldier from the war. Associate John Latham was also in attendance for the event.

In August the Ohio Society held its Officers and Councilors meeting at the Cleveland Yachting Club with a special birthday celebration for associate Elliot Eldred whose birthday was on the same day as the meeting. At that time the Ohio group voted to give $1,000.00 to the John Quincy Adams Foundation.

At our Christmas luncheon in the beginning of December, Carol Jacobs, wife of Associate Bill Jacobs, gave a slide presentation on the history of Ohio's great Cleveland Orchestra. For 17 years Carol was the resident Archivist for the Orchestra. We had a record attendance for that event.

At the first meeting of 2011, Ohio Governor Tom Harper swore in former Governor General John Bourne as the new Ohio Governor.

Fall Bulletin 2010

The Ohio Society on Saturday, July 17th, held its annual meeting with wives at the Cleveland Yachting Club with speaker Eric Johnson who gave a talk about the Cleveland area important involvement in the War of 1812.

On July 24th Governor Tom Harper laid the Order's wreath at the Tomb of the unknown Revolutionary Solider at Fort Laurens in Boliver, Ohio. Ohio Associate Dick Fetzer put together the activities for that event representing SAR. On Memorial Day, Sam Hartwell, Deputy Governor, presented our wreath at Lakeview Cemetery representing our order.

The Ohio Society has had a variety of interesting speakers: Associate Gil True gave a talk on early automotive manufacturing in Cleveland; Secretary Shawn Zurat with co-worker Ken Morgan, Both VPs with PNC Bank, gave a presentation on estate taxes and good estate planning and Bob Carlson, a medic in the Vietnam War, gave a talk about his experiences in the Vietnam War.

On February 20th the Ohio Society joined with other genealogy groups to celebrate George Washington's birthday at the Shaker Heights Country Club. Governor General John Bourne, Tom Harper, George and Shirley Mason, Dick Haviland, Gil True and Dick Fetzer were on hand to join the SAR for the celebration. At The Ohio Societies Officers and Councilors summer outing on Saturday August 28, the Associates voted to give a donation of $1,000 to kick off the 2010 drive for the John Quincy Adams Foundation.

Governor Tom Harper and Governor General John Bourne went to general Court in Charleston, South Carolina. What an interesting, fun and well-put-together General Court by Governor General Tommy Leland and Crew. Thank you!

Spring Bulletin 2010

The Ohio society on Saturday July 18th held its annual meeting with wives at the Cleveland Yachting Club with speaker Doris Gorgas, who spoke about the “Forts in the American Revolution.” A large group of our associates were present. On July 25th Tom Harper represented our order at the rededication of the Tomb of the Unknown Revolutionary Soldier at fort Laurens in Bolivar, Ohio. Dick Fetzer, Registrar Historian for the Ohio Society, was master of ceremonies and organizer for the event representing SAR.

Ohio Associates and Wives poste for a pictures at the annual meeting at the Cleveland Yachting Club.

On Saturday September 12, Tom Harper, Ohio Governor, hosted at his home in Rocky River, Ohio, the Officer’s and Councilor’s meeting at which time the group made the decision to contribute $2,000 to the John Quincy Adams Foundation for this year.

On October 21, Sam Hartwell, Deputy Governor, gave a comprehensive talk at the Cleveland Yachting Club on Salem Witch Trials of 1692 including the influence King William’s and King Phillip’s war had on stress levels of the early settlers, leading to the Witch Trials. At the Christmas luncheon on December 16th, Dan Rosette, our speaker, gave a talk on the importance of the American Revolution in Ohio involving Ohio Indians. An active program is set up for the Ohio society for year 2010.

Fall 2009 Bulletin


Deputy Governor Sam Hartwell presenting OFPA wreath.



The Ohio Society participated with SAR and many other lineage organizations on February 22nd to celebrate George Washington’s birthday at the Shaker Heights Country Club. Attending were John Bourne, Governor General, Tom Harper, Ohio Governor, Dick Fetzer, Historian, George and Shirley Mason and Councilor, Gil True.

On Memorial day, Deputy Governor Sam Hartwell presented the Society’s wreath at the ceremony at Lakeview Cemetery in Cleveland.

At the April 22nd meeting Dan Rosette, a retired international banker, gave a talk at the Cleveland Yachting Club on Ohio Indians and the use of some of their tools and weapons. Mr. Rosette will be giving a second talk this fall on Indians in the American Revolution.

Associates who attended General Court in New London, CT, from our Society were Tom Harper and John Bourne.

On June 5th, Associates John Bourne and Tom Harper were on hand for the rededication ceremony of George Washington Square in downtown Cleveland.

Spring 2009 Bulletin

Governor General and past Ohio Governor
John Bourne presented the wreath for Ohio
society at the rededication of the only Tomb
for an Unknown Revolutionary War Soldier
west of the Ohio River.

The Ohio Society again participated with many other lineage organizations in July at the
rededication of the only Tomb for an Unknown Revolutionary War Soldier west of the Ohio River. In Revolutionary time, Fort Laurens was in “Indian Territory,” now it is in Bolivar, Ohio. Governor Bourne, pictured, presented our wreath.

In July, Ohio’s officers and councilors met at the Governor’s home to plan our schedule of fall activities. Our Christmas luncheon with wives, pictured, and our general membership luncheons were held at the Cleveland Skating Club. In October, also at the CSC, we met jointly with Cleveland’s SAR chapter for an interesting evening with Ben Franklin impersonator Dick Fowler of Columbus, OH, to hear stories of his youth in Boston and Philadelphia.

Fall Bulletin 2008

A June meeting of the Ohio Society was held to recognize the appointment of John M. Bourne as OFPA Governor General.

The Ohio Society is proud to congratulate its Associate, John M. Bourne, on his election to Governor General. He is only the second Associate from our Society to be so honored, following Edward Martin Hall, elected in 1966. John was appropriately recognized at a June luncheon of Associates and guests at the Cleveland Yachting Club. Our speaker, Dr. Daniel E. Marsalek, Captain USNR (ret.) spoke on “Bradstreet’s 1764 Disaster at Rocky River. Dr. Marsalek is pictured receiving our First Family’s Book from the Governor General.

In February, we joined with nearly two dozen other genealogical or historical organizations to celebrate Washington’s Birthday at the Shaker Heights Country Club.

Executive Director of the Mt. Vernon Ladies Association, James C. Roes was the speaker to 200+ in attendance. We held our regular monthly luncheon of Associates at the Cleveland Skating Club in January, February, March and April. In May, Governor Bourne represented us at The General Court in Boston.

Spring Bulletin 2008

Ohio officers and councilors with Bonnie.

The second half of our Ohio Society’s year began with Governor John Bourne delivering the rededication address for the third consecutive year at the only Tomb in our country for an Unknown Revolutionary War Soldier. The program, joint with the Ohio SAR, is held at Fort Lauren, Bolivar, OH, each July.

The August Councilors’ meeting to plan events for the balance of the year turned into a complete surprise for our Governor when he was presented the Meredith B. Colket, Jr. Award for Outstanding Service to the Ohio Society. Three of the four prior recipients, Dick Fetzer, Dick Haviland and Keith Sheldon made the presentation. The
only other recipient, Dr. W. B. Cleveland, was unable to be present. The Award is named for the late Executive Director of the Western Reserve Historical Society and Editor of Founders of Early American Families, a volume relied on by all of us to establish our Founding ancestors. It is a reference book owned by many Associates nationwide.

Ohio Treasurer and Historian Keith M. Sheldon was our speaker at the September Membership meeting on the topic of, “Why Am I Here?’ While developing his own ancestry for the Sheldon Association, he had encountered difficulties in reconciling the difference of eleven days between the Julian calendar in use in Protestant England until 1752 and the Gregorian calendar adopted by Catholic countries in 1582, and now used by all nations.

In October, we and our wives joined with the Western Reserve Society SAR to celebrate Archibald Willard Night, honoring the Ohio painter of the famous “Spirit of ‘76.’” The event was held at the Cleveland Skating Club with Western Reserve Historical Society Executive Director Emeritus Theodore A. Sande, PhD, discussing, “The Burning of New London, CT, 6 Sep 1781.”

Our November meeting was a very pleasant fellowship gathering despite the unexpected illness and absence of our planned speaker. In December we held our always delightful Holiday luncheon with our wives included.

Fall Bulletin 2007

The highlight of the first half of 2007 for The Ohio Society was a gala luncheon in March at the Cleveland Skating Club featuring Governor General J. Michael Phelps, Esq. After a reception and our meal, Mike brought greetings from the National Order and then spoke to the assembled two dozen Associates and guests on the legal systems of our Founders. We thanked him with a gift first edition copy of our new 62-page “History of The Ohio Society,” compiled by our Historian Keith M. Sheldon.

Ohio Governor John and Judy Bourne pose with Governor General Michael Phelps.

Earlier in the year in January, we held our regular Associates’ luncheon to plan our activities for the year and to install our officers and councilors. In February, we joined with SAR’s Western Reserve Society (Cleveland) for the area’s annual George Washington’s Birthday Celebration. Nearly two dozen other genealogical/historical organizations also participated, with approximately 275 persons attending to hear Hillsdale College (MI) President Dr. Larry Arm speak on “Educating for Liberty.” At our May meeting, Associate and Ohio Secretary Gilbert M. True, PhD., gave an interesting presentation on “The War of 1812 and the Battle of Lake Erie.” Later in May our Governor Bourne represented The Ohio Society at the 111th General Court, held in Basking Ridge, NJ, for an interesting, busy and enjoyable four days. During that weekend, Deputy Governor Stocking presented our Ohio wreath at the Memorial Day ceremony held at Cleveland’s Lake View Cemetery.

Fall Bulletin 2006
(Left to Right) OH Society Governor (and Secretary General) John M. Bourne, Cadet, and Associate Frank Trautman.

The Ohio Society continues to be an active branch of the Order. Starting with our January business meeting, we established a new program of remembering our past Associates with Ohio Society memorial contributions to the John Quincy Adams Foundation. This program has been well received by the Order’s General officers who have subsequently recommended it to other state Societies, both to honor our deceased members but also to help build the JQA.

In February, we shared Washington’s Birthday festivities and speeches with nearly two dozen genealogical/historical organizations at the Cleveland Skating Club. Our March program was presented by a descendant of the Massachusetts Mather family telling tales of the five Colonial Mather brothers. A month later our featured guest spoke on the early birth and development of our nation.

In May, we held our always enjoyable annual gathering with wives and guests on the shores of Lake Erie, which this year was highlighted by the welcome presence and remarks of then - Governor General Bob Vivian. Later in the month Governor John Bourne and Registrar Dick Fetzer represented our Society at the General Court in Savannah, GA, for a most interesting and enjoyable four days. Capping a busy Founders and Patriots’ month, Gov. Bourne and Associate Frank Trautman journeyed to Athens, OH, to present the Order’s ROTC Award metal and certificate to Ohio University’s leading Air Force cadet, Christopher Clark.

The first half of our meeting year was wrapped up with a well-done illustrated presentation on Ohio native Archibald Willard, painter of “Yankee Doodle” or as it later became known, “The Spirit of ‘76.” On Memorial Day our Associates presented the Society’s wreath at two different cemetery ceremonies.

Ohio Associates and guests.

Fall Bulletin 2005

Governor John Bourne and past Governor Richard L. Fetzer

The Ohio Society has enjoyed a full and active first half of 2005. Following the January officer installation and organizational luncheon meeting at the Cleveland Skating Club. In February, we shared Washington’s Birthday with approximately 160 persons representing 22 different genealogical/historical organizations. After a gourmet luncheon, George himself, impersonated by Dr. John C. Swartz, author and lecturer, told us about his youth and growing up in Colonial Virginia prior to the Revolution. At our April meeting the executive director of the Shaker Historical Society [Shaker Heights, Ohio], gave us an interesting presentation on the beginnings of the Shaker movement in England.

Donald Clark receiving his membership certificate from Governor John Bourne

Our Annual Dinner was enjoyed by 23 Associates and guests at the Dunham Tavern Museum, the oldest [1824] building still standing on its original site in the city of Cleveland. Once a stagecoach stop on the old Buffalo-Cleveland post road, today Dunham is a living museum furnished with 19th century antiques, available for educational and social activities. Highlights of the evening were the presentation of his membership certificate and rosette to Donald Clark, our newest Ohio Associate, and The awarding of the Meredith B. Colket, Jr. Award, the Ohio Society’s highest recognition for outstanding service to our Order. Associate Dr. Colket was the original editor of Founders of Early American Families and for many years was Director of The Western Reserve Historical Society. This was only the fourth time the Colket Award has been presented. It was memorable for our society that two prior recipients, past Governors Keith Sheldon and Dick Haviland, were in attendance when Governor John Bourne introduced Richard Fetzer as our newest winner. Dick has given many years of dedicated service to our Order, as a past Governor, as a contributor to the revised edition of our Founders’ book, and he is currently serving as Ohio Registrar.

Spring Bulletin 2005

Planting the Ohio 
				Buckeye Tree
Then Ohio Chaplain, now Ohio Society Governor, John M. Bourne, helping to plant the Ohio Buckeye tree. Late Governor Francis Sherman in uniform is looking on.

The Ohio Society began an active 2004 by participating in the planting of a Buckeye tree (the Ohio State tree) next to the Memorial for US President James A. Garfield, in Cleveland, commemorating Ohio’s bicentennial. Later in thesummer we presented an OFPA wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Patriot on the occasion of the 225th Anniversary of Fort Laurens, Bolivar, Ohio. The fort had been built in 1778 in an fated campaign to attack the British at Detroit. But supplying this wilderness outpost was its downfall. After a month-long siege, the fort was abandoned by its starving garrison in 1779.

Our newly elected offi cers were installed at our January 2005 meeting and a preliminary schedule for the year was developed. In an effort to encourage greater participation by younger “still gainfully employed” Associates, we will test the idea of holding some of our meetings on Saturdays. We hope this will generate greater participation and will also lead to recruiting new Associates who may not be available for our regular weekday gatherings.

Spring Bulletin 2004

Wreath laying at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldiers
Gov. Francis Sherman thanking the Director of the local historical society Gov. Francis Sherman placing a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldiers

The Ohio Society has maintained a pretty heavy schedule of Activities.

First to mention, we have held seven (7) regular luncheon programs, three (3) in association with Western Reserve Society Sons of the American Revolution, and two special Ladies Day programs.

The highlights of the year:
  1. Feb. 22, 2003  - Honor George Washington with WRSSAR
  2. Organize, attend and celebrate anniversary of the only American Revolution Battle in Ohio at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldiers buried at Fort Laurens with a Color Guard, Local, State and National SAR officers.
  3. Attend and participate with SAR Color Guard Veterans Day Ceremonies at Cleveland City Hall and WRSSAR meetings.

We are preparing to launch a membership drive with the participation of all current officers.

Fall Bulletin 2002

The January Meeting of the Ohio Society was held at Noon on January 16, 2002 at the Cleveland Skating Club in Shaker Heights, Ohio. Following the luncheon, Governor General Alden Atwood addressed the Ohio Society in the President's Room. Associates were encouraged to consider The Order in their wills. Also encour-aged was the use of the Short Form Application to bring sons and grandsons into The Order. Several suggestions were discussed relating to more emphasis on youth education along with other topics connected with the future of The Order. Governor Alden Atwood received an acclamation from the Ohio Society for his visit. A chauffeur driven Lincoln Town Car Limousine provided by Governor McIntyre took Alden to the airport.

The February Meeting was held at Noon on February 22, 2002 at the Cleveland Skating Club as part of the Annual Combined Washington Birthday Celebration hosted by the Western Reserve Society of the Sons of the American Revolution. Richard L. McElroy, Historian at the McKinley Museum and National Memorial, Canton, Ohio gave a very interesting talk concerning the &Presidents' and First Ladies' Ancestors Who Fought in the Revolutionary War". After the meeting, Mr. McElroy autographed copies of his latest book.

The March Meeting featured former Ohio Society Governor and current Registrar Robert G. Parvin giving a talk on "White Sheep, Black Sheep", or the good and bad guys of history. The list was extensive with quite a few surprises.

The Annual Meeting of the Ohio Society was held on Friday evening, April 19, 2002, at the Cleveland Skating Club. The Posting and Retiring of the Colors was performed by the Archibald Willard Color Guard of the Western Reserve Society SAR accompanied by the playing of "Yankee Doodle" on an Irish Flute by Governor Ruluff D. McIntyre, Jr. Following an excellent dinner, Donald Rosenberg, President of the Music Critics Association of North America and author of the award winning book, The Cleveland Orchestra Story "Second to None", presented a highly interesting talk outlining the historical path of The Cleveland Orchestra from obscurity to world-wide acclaim. To show progress, Donald played several musical examples, such as The 1812 Overture, illustrating the march toward ever richer and more accomplished blending of skilled musical output and conducting brilliance. In the case of The 1812 Overture, a major accomplishment was getting the drums to play at the right moment! There were many comments about orchestra personalities and the impact on orchestral history that were highly entertaining.

The May Meeting, held May 15, 2002 at the Cleveland Skating Club, found Dr. Mike Dory, Professor of History, presenting a talk entitled, "George Washington - Zero to Hero". In the beginning, the British considered Washington to be little more than a "paltry little Colonel of Militia" and not to be taken seriously. In seven years of war, Washington won only three battles, Trenton, Princeton, and Yorktown, but, in the end, these were the only Battles he had to win to defeat the British. Early on, Washington addressed the chaos in maintaining a fighting force by: (1) Recruiting a regular Army; (2) Protecting against attrition by prolonged enlistments; (3) Never risking a large, general action against the British; (4) Having a strategy of controlled withdrawals allowing the American army to survive until the British made a critical mistake. Then a general battle could be fought with the advantage to the Americans. George Washington invented the concept of controlled and limited engagement which ultimately won the war. Washington established a spy network so cleverly that he was able to manipulate British strategy by providing misinformation as to American tactics. He eliminated rifles as primary military weapons in favor of muskets with bayonets so highly successful "cold steel" attacks from ambush, firing at marching columns from behind trees, and imitating the coordinated and fierce attack methods of wolf packs. Dr. Mike Dory emphasized that seldom can one say any one individual is indispensible in history; however, George Washington may be considered truly indispensible to the success of the American Revolution. Hence, zero to hero!

The June 19 Meeting was a presentation and discussion of the events of the 106th General Court by Governor McIntyre. In addition, an update was provided by Book Chairman Richard J. Haviland relative to progress on the Second Revision of Dr. Meredith B. Colket, Jr.'s Founders of Early American Families now being published by the Ohio Society.