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DAR Library

Daughters of the American Revolution, or DAR, are a group of women who share one important commonality. All of them have been able to trace their heritage to at least one person who helped America achieve independence from England during the American Revolution. For information beyond what you will read here you should go to http://www.dar.org/ and view the official website of the DAR.

To become a member of the DAR, you must be female, and at least 18 years of age. You must provide documentation of the marriages, births, and deaths that connect you to the ancestor you claim to be related to. That ancestor must have provided service to help America become independent sometime between the Battle of Lexington (April 17, 1775), and the withdrawal of the British troops from New York, (November 26, 1783). Your relative must have been a signer of the Declaration of Independence, or someone who provided military, civil, or patriotic service. Full details about each of those categories can be found on the DAR website. There is a National DAR, as well as individual societies for each state.

The DAR Library has a wealth of information. It was founded in 1896, and was first opened to the public around 1900. It is considered to be one of America’s premier genealogical research centers. To access the DAR Genealogical Research System (GRS), and the information within it, go here http://www.dar.org/library/onlinlib.cfm to begin your online search. Their search engine allows you to customize your search. Look for a particular place name in a certain area. You can find information about a war, or period of history. Or you can find a specific book, or glean information from cemetery records.

Or, you can enter a family surname into the search engine, and see what data comes up. This may be the most interesting part of the DAR Library if you are seeking genealogical information to help you fill out your family tree. Consider trying different spellings of the name you are entering, for more results. The DAR transcribes information found inside books, as well as from family bibles. This unique and extremely detailed system allows a search of names that most other libraries would overlook.

You can also visit the DAR Library in person. It is located in Washington D.C., and is open every day except for Sundays and two weeks in late June and early July.