The SAR Magazine

Fall 2018

The SAR MAGAZINE is the official quarterly publication of the National Society of the Sons of the American Revolution published quarterly.

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Page 22 of 47

SPRING 2018 13 Dollar For Dollar Your Gift Goes Further promoter of the monument, he was buried in the martyrs' vault—the only known and complete remains thus enshrined. Walt Whitman was the next to promote the martyrs. As the editor of the Brooklyn Daily Eagle, he tried to renew interest by reminding his readers that he "had been told by old citizens that nothing was more common in their early days than to see thereabout plenty of skulls and other bones of these dead—and that thoughtless boys would kick them in play." Over time, the monument deteriorated, and in 1875, the citizens formed The Martyrs' Monumental Association. The city donated a portion of Washington Park (now called Fort Greene) overlooking the Wallabout Bay, where a dozen or more prison ships once anchored, and the association built a 25-by-11- foot brick vault. The martyrs rested there briefly, before construction at the Brooklyn Navy Yard exhumed additional Patriots from "inglorious oblivion." Thus referring to the fate of the "unknown dead," President William Howard Taft helped dedicate the current Prison Ship Martyrs' Monument in 1908. Following Taft to the podium, as he would as chief justice of the Supreme Court, Charles Evans Hughes commented, "Fortunate are the people whose soil has been the scene of patriotic service and of heroic devotion to be a noble cause." The martyrs have now rested beneath the 149-foot monument for more than a century, during which public support changed like the revealing tide. Like its predecessor, this monument was ignored and vandalized and soon deteriorated. In 2008, a $5-million renovation relit the eternal flame and returned the four guardian eagles. As America prepares for its 250th anniversary, we should heed Hughes' caution: "We cannot afford to be indifferent to examples of fortitude, or to lose by forgetfulness the stimulus of the lessons of sacrifice," as we strive to remember our obligation to our forefathers by shining a light on these Patriots who died in darkness. John A. Schatzel is a descendant of Captain Thomas Horton, who was captured at Fort Clinton, New York and died aboard a prison ship, and of his widow, Susannah Horton, who paid her New York State war tax. FALL 2018 23 Now is the Perfect Time to Give. At the 2018 Fall Leadership Conference, the Rigel Family announced they will match up to $50,000 in donations in support of The SAR Education Center and Museum. This means that every dollar you give in support of The SAR Education Center and Museum will be like giving two dollars! (502) 315-1777

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