The Washington State Society is no longer offering life memberships. Those who previously purchased life memberships from WASSAR are exempt from National, State, and Chapter dues.
National Society is currently offering Life Memberships. Click here for application and information on the costs. The rate is approximately $20 per year until your 100th birthday.
To get started, please go to the Online Application and sign into the SAR system. The system is secure, and only you can access your information, although reviewing genealogists can access your application. Click on ‘My Applications’ in the left column, click on the blue ‘Start a New Application’, fill in name and the state, then click the green ‘Start Application’ and fill in the ‘Basic Info’ section and SAVE it—DO NOT CLICK ANYTHING ON THE ‘PROCESS’ SCREEN. You can then leave the website, and let the chapter genealogist know that you’ve begun your application. The genealogist can work with you to complete the application.
The objects of this Society are declared to be patriotic, historical, and educational, and shall include those intended or designed to perpetuate the memory of those patriots who, by their services or sacrifices during the war of the American Revolution, achieved the independence of the American people; to unite and promote fellowship among their descendants; to inspire them and the community-at-large with a more profound reverence for the principles of the government founded by our forefathers; to encourage historical research in relation to the American Revolution; to acquire and preserve the records of the individual services of the patriots of the war, as well as documents, relics, and landmarks; to mark the scenes of the Revolution by appropriate memorials; to celebrate the anniversaries of the prominent events of the war and of the Revolutionary period; to foster true patriotism; to maintain and extend the institutions of American freedom and to carry out the purposes expressed in the preamble of the Constitution of our country and the injunctions of Washington in his farewell address to the American people. [NSSAR Constitution, Article II]
Any male shall be eligible for membership in the Society being a citizen of good repute in the community, is the lineal descendant of an ancestor who was at all times unfailing in loyalty to, and rendered active service in the cause of American Independence either as an officer, soldier, seaman, marine, militiaman or minuteman, in the armed forces of the Continental Congress of any one of the several Colonies or States, as a signer of the Declaration of Independence, as a member of a Committee of Safety or Correspondence, as a member of any Continental, Provincial, or Colonial Congress or Legislature, as a foreign national of, but not limited to, France, Germany, Poland, Spain, Sweden or Switzerland who rendered service in the cause of American Independence or as a recognized patriot who performed actual service by overt acts of resistance to the authority of Great Britain, provided, however, that no person advocating the overthrow of the Government of the United States by use of force or violence shall be eligible for membership in the Society. [NSSAR Constitution, Article III]
It is possible to be a member of two or more SAR state societies, while paying National dues through the "Primary" society. In the same way one may also have dual membership in more than one chapter.
Attached are forms used to:
1. Transfer from one chapter to another, both within WASSAR.
2. Establish dual membership in two chapters, both within WASSAR.
The Sons of the American Revolution (SAR) is actively engaged in recruiting new members. See Objects and Eligibilty, at right. You are encouraged to research your lineage using the many tools and resources available on the web, in addition to those you'll find at your local libraries and historical societies. See Research Helps. However, if you run into difficulties or if you have any questions, you are more than welcome to contact a Chapter Genealogist for assistance. These experts will help you complete your application and submit it to the State and National Societies for review and processing. Frequently, the Chapter Genealogist is the first person in the SAR you'll come to know on a first name basis.
There are two ways to get in touch with a Chapter Genealogist. First, you can contact him using the Contact Us Form that is provided in the menu, above. Another method is to use the WASSAR Chapters link to find the Chapter that is closest to where you live, and then drop in for a visit during one of the monthly meetings. Please be advised that the meeting times and dates are subject to change, and as such it is a good idea to to contact the Chapter President before visiting. This is not a requirement, just a suggestion.
Genealogical research can be fun and rewarding, but it can also be extremely frustrating. It helps if you know where to look for information, and which pitfalls should be avoided. One of the largest sources of free and online genealogical information is FamilySearch.org. This site will provide you with access to over 75 local Family History Centers here in Washington State that are open free to the public. Bear in mind that while source material is available on the website, much of the compiled information was not submitted by professional genealogists. The same can be said about Ancestry.com. It both cases, it is important that you verify your research using original sources such as the U.S Census records, birth certificates, death certificates, marriage licenses, and tombstones.
During the research phase of the application process, it is helpful to ask the other members of your family (during family gatherings such as Thanksgiving, Christmas, or July 4th celebrations) what they know about your ancestral heritage. Frequently, the family has an "oral history" that has been passed down from generation to generation about an ancestor who fought in the Revolutionary War. There might even be a family heirloom such as an old Bible that contains valuable information about your lineage. Finally, ask around if any of your family members are already members of the SAR or the DAR (Daughters of the American Revolution). This will make the application process a lot easier by an order of several magnitudes.
A few final thoughts and disclaimers: Dues that are submitted with an application are refundable - if the application is not accepted - but the application fee, itself, is not refundable. Also, for children and young adults who wish to join the SAR, and who are already in good standing in the C.A.R. (Children of the American Revolution), the SAR application fee will be waived. Check the National SAR website SAR.org additional information on this topic, and much more.
For more detailed information on researching your line, click on Research Helps. For a list of locally available books containing rosters of people who served during the American Revolution, click on Genealogical Resources.