Welcome to the Kettle Creek Chapter

Chapter History

In 1920, Mrs. William R. Latimer (the former Mary Sims)* wrote a history of Kettle Creek Chapter for the Georgia Society, Daughters of the American Revolution. The following material was taken from her account for the early years of the chapter history.

A chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution was organized in Washington, Georgia, September 11, 1895. The name chosen for the chapter was "Wilkes County," to honor the county of residence of the members. The chapter members were anxious to purchase the land on which the Battle of Kettle Creek was fought, on February 14, 1779. A survey was made of the property in 1899, and in January of 1900, the chapter purchased twelve and one-half acres for the sum of $75.00. After the purchase of this land the name of the chapter was changed to Kettle Creek. A re-issue of the charter was obtained with the names of the charter members retained in the new charter. After the county purchased the building formerly owned by Gen. B. W. Heard, the county set aside two rooms in the building for the use of the United Daughters of the Confederacy and the Daughters of the American Revolution. In July 1919, the Woman's Club, the DAR, and the UDC purchased a lot on which to erect a clubhouse. In August of 1929, a residence was bought and moved to the lot and was used for meetings. Chapter meetings were held at this site until the chapter was disbanded on February 1, 1941.

The chapter set aside funds to mark the battlefield at Kettle Creek during the early years of its existence, as this was considered to be the most important work of the chapter. In 1927, with appropriations secured by our senators and representatives in Congress and the funds our chapter raised, we were able to begin the process of obtaining a monument for the battlefield. In July of 1929, the War Department made an appropriation of $2,500, under the direction of Capt. R. T. Edwards from Fort McPherson. Capt. Edwards came to Washington, Georgia, three times to meet with members of our chapter and the marble company about the monument in 1929 and early 1930. On June 6, 1930, the monument was unveiled with a program that elicited National and State recognition. The inscription on the monument reads:

"On this hill on 1779, the battle of Kettle Creek was fought. Colonel Andrew Pickens, Colonel Elijah Clarke and Colonel John Dooley commanded the victorious American forces. This battle of the American Revolution, in which the British were severely defeated checked their invasion of Georgia. Erected by the United States Government upon the request of the Kettle Creek Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution."

In 1930 our chapter placed a marker to commemorate Nancy Hart on the Nancy Hart Highway in Wilkes County.

On December 10, 1971, Kettle Creek Chapter NSDAR was reorganized with Mrs. Charles A. Wickersham as Regent.

June 6, 1972, the 42nd Anniversary of the dedication of the Kettle Creek Monument was observed by our chapter. The program held at the War Hill site was attended by Georgia State Regent, Mrs. Bun Wiley; Vice-President General, Mrs. Ralph Van Landingham; the Secretary of the State of Georgia; General Charles P. Summerall of the 2nd U. S. Infantry Band of Fort McPherson, and many other dignitaries. Wreaths were placed at the monument and dinner was served at the site following the ceremony.

In the fall of 1974 Kettle Creek Chapter held a solemn ceremony at War Hill placing markers for two Revolutionary soldiers and the wife of one of the soldiers in the memorial area of Kettle Creek Battleground. Dr. Turner Bryson, Chairman of the Wilkes County Bicentennial Commission, along with Lou Singleton, Chairman of Marking Revolutionary Soldier's Graves & Restoring Historic Spots, had rescued these markers from a pasture and a hog pen. The two soldiers, Lewis Flemsiter and Richard Poteet, were Revolutionary patriots. Delphia Poteet's marker was placed beside her husband's marker.

On February 11, 1979, Kettle Creek Chapter NSDAR took part in the 200th celebration of the Battle of Kettle Creek. The new monument was unveiled at this ceremony. The monument was purchased with a grant from the State of Georgia ($10,000) for the celebration. Mrs. John Singleton, Regent of Kettle Creek Chapter at the time, served as a member of the Kettle Creek Bi-Centennial Committee with about twenty-five other representatives from the county.

Under the leadership of Regent Mrs. John Singleton, Kettle Creek Chapter agreed to convey the Kettle Creek Battleground site to Wilkes County. On January 21, 1980, the deed was signed, and the property passed to the county, plus two acres donated to the chapter by AMAX Forest Products, Inc., for use as a parking lot, a total of 14 acres.

Each year on the anniversary of the Battle of Kettle Creek our chapter traveled to War Hill and laid a wreath at the site. More tombstones of Revolutionary soldiers were rescued and added to the memorial marker area. As the popularity of celebrating Revolutionary anniversaries grew, more organizations joined our chapter each year as we marked the victory of the patriots in the woods of up-country Georgia over two hundred years ago.

Today Kettle Creek faithfully continues to mark the anniversary on War Hill remembering not only the gallant soldiers who fought there on February 14, 1779, but also the ladies of our chapter who saved the battle site in 1899.

In April of 1990 our chapter dedicated a historical marker in Tignall, Georgia, for the Freeman-Hillyer Home Site, with the unmarked graves of Capt. John Freeman (RS), Shaler Hillyer, and Robert Hillyer on Chickasaw Creek.

During the regency of Juanita Rhodes Riley, 1988-1990, the War Hill Society, Children of the American Revolution, was formed under the C.A.R. Chairmanship of Helen Groover Callaway on December 2, 1988.

Under the leadership of Regent Patsy Davenport Bailey, 1994-1995, Kettle Creek Chapter won First Place in the National Heritage Contest for a Tree of Life quilt block which was displayed at the 105th Continental Congress.

The rededication of the grave marker of Vines Collier, a veteran of the French and Indian Wars and the American Revolution, was conducted by Regent Carolyn Bryant Faz, members of the Collier family, and a Color Guard from the Sons of the American Revolution on October 20, 2001. The grave-site is located in the Salem Community of present-day Oglethorpe County.

Each year our chapter commemorates the anniversary of the signing of our Declaration of Independence with a proclamation signed by the Mayor of Washington, Georgia, the first city in the United States named for General George Washington, and a ringing of the church bells of the city at noon.

During the two decades of the 1980s and 1990s, our chapter met at the Ray House for luncheons. In June 2002 Jerry Ray closed the Ray House and our chapter began meeting in the Fellowship Hall of the Washington Presbyterian Church and other meeting rooms around the county.

*Mrs. Latimer's daughter, Mrs. Earl Blue (Mary Wright Latimer) is a current member of Kettle Creek Chapter.