Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War

Commander-in-Chief’s message to the membership #4/2017-18

Commander-in-Chief’s message to the membership #4/2017-18


Much has happened since, I last wrote to you. The holiday’s passed quickly and pleasantly here

in Lynchburg and I hope that they did the same at your homes.

January saw the beginning of a new year and the beginning of the Annual Encampments. Our

Brothers in Kansas held the first annual encampment on January 13th but unfortunately, I was

unable to attend due to winter weather issues. I was however able to attend the Mid-year

meeting of the Department of Indiana at the end of January and the Mid-year meeting of the

Department of Wisconsin and Minnesota the first weekend in February. Both Departments are

very involved with the work of the Order and I commended them for their efforts. I was

particularly impressed with the determination both departments displayed for completing the

“Last Soldier Project” and I found the work Indiana has done in documenting the locations of

their last soldier graves and their monuments using a Google Mapping application worthy of

being considered by the rest of the Order.

In the coming weeks, I shall be making visits in the departments of California, Rhode Island,

Georgia / South Carolina, and the Chesapeake. If you are a member of one of those departments,

I hope you will attend your encampment so I can have an opportunity to personally meet you.

Administrative Items of importance:

1. General Order 23 (Awards) – I recently sent out my General Order 23, which details the

procedures for submitting awards to the national for the period August 2017 – July 2018.

I encourage each of you to review both General Order 23 and the Awards Policy, which

can be found by clicking the Governance Link on the National Website and looking on

the left-hand side of the page.

a. Mary Walker Award – To eliminate any ambiguity, I remind you that if your

camp or department is going to recommend a lady for the Mary Walker Award, at

either the department or national level, she must a member of the LGAR, the

WRC, the Auxiliary, or the Daughters to be eligible. I would also suggest that

you review the awards policy for the additional specific criteria necessary for the


b. Stephenson Memorial Plaza Streamer – Many of you have written to me asking

about the streamers, I said would be given for donations to the Stephenson

Memorial Plaza project. I have had the streamers produced and shall begin to

issue them throughout the spring months. I want to express my thanks to each

camp and department who provided funds and would like those who have not to

know there is still time. I will keep the award open right up to the National


2. General Order 18 (By-laws changes) – I have issued, at the request of the National

Treasurer General Order 18, which requires the Camps and Departments to make changes

to their by-laws no later than June 2019, in support of our continued attempts to gain a

Group 501c3 tax exemption for the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War. Several

Brothers have written to me with questions on this General Order. In preparing this

Order, I discussed several aspects of the required IRS wording with former Commandersin-

Chief, Brothers who are experts on our Constitution and Regulations, and my

Counselors. These eminent advisors helped to formulate a way to meet the IRS

requirements and remain compliant to our C&R. Chapter V, Article V(a) of the C&R

states that all property of the Camps and Departments are held in Trust for the National

and the Regulations authorize the Department Commander to take possession of the

materials, as agent of the National Organization. In the section of IRS required language

on disposing of property from disbanded Camps found in GO 18 we are citing Chapter V

Article V(a) as the justification for designating the Department Commander to act as

agent of the National Organization in the case of a Camps disbandment and to hold any

property in trust for the National Organization. In this way a method was devised to

comply with IRS regulations in our attempt to obtain 501c3 for the subordinate units and

yet not be in violation with the C&R. Having said this, I will expect there to be several

proposed changes to the C&R this summer in Boston to help bring it in line with the

current IRS laws and policies for 501c3 organizations.

a. I have also been contacted by a few Brothers regarding who is responsible for

approving the By-law changes of Camps. In answer to that let me share the


National Constitution and Regulations Article XIV By-laws

Section 1. Camps shall adopt By-Laws subject to the approval of the Department

Commander. All amendments, alterations, or deletion of Camp By-Laws shall be

submitted to the Department Commander for approval as to consistency with the

Articles of Incorporation, Constitution, Regulations and Department By-Laws.

No By-Laws, amendments, alterations, or deletions shall be effective until

approved by the Department Commander in writing.

3. Updated Annual Report Forms – Brothers should be aware that a new Form 27 and a new

Form 35 have been published on the National Website.

4. Memorial University – I have received several emails from Brothers asking about the

Memorial University Program. I apologize for any problems that our Brothers might

have experienced. I have communicated with the Patriotic Instructor and he assures me

that the program is running smoothly and that all completion awards will be forwarded to

those who have earned them.

5. I wish to acknowledge that an error was made in GO 13. Real Daughter Maggie Devane

lived in St. Pauls, North Carolina, not St. Paul, Minnesota.

Upcoming Events of Interest

6. 150th Anniversary of General Logan’s GO 11 and the first Memorial Day at Arlington

National Cemetery in 1868.

a. Brothers this coming May 30th should be a ‘Red Letter” date on our calendars.

We will be marking the 150th Anniversary of General Logan’s GO 11 and it is

my hope that every Camp and Department will consider holding a special event to

celebrate this momentous occasion.

b. In honor of the 150th anniversary of Logan’s GO 11; the SUVCW Foundation has

produced a medal that will be available later this spring. For more information

you should go to the Foundation’s link on our National Website or contact

Brother Robert Petrovic at

7. Lincoln Death Day Ceremony and Luncheon (14 April)

This is an annual event that many of the Brothers attend. It is a singularly special

ceremony to honor the memory of our 16th President and is held at the site of his final

resting place. As Commander-in-Chief, I have to opportunities to give due homage to

this great man however, this ceremony in Springfield is the most significant for me.

Please join me if you can on April and then come over to the Luncheon and spend an

hour or so with your Brothers and Sisters of the Allied Orders. Reservation forms were

included in the recent Banner and they are available on the National Website.

Later in the afternoon there will be a ceremony at the Stephenson Memorial Plaza in

Petersburg, about a 35-minute ride from Springfield. Current plans call for a dedication

of flag poles and other fixtures at the Memorial Plaza.

Other Upcoming events of Note:

8. Testimonial Dinner for Commander-in-Chief Day, Frederick Maryland, March 10th

9. Meeting of the National Council of Administration in Franklin Tennessee, March 23 and


10. National Encampment, Boston, Massachusetts, August 8-12

Brothers let me conclude my message with this comment. Our Camps and Departments are

incredibly engaged in reaching our mission goals, and I am so proud to be your Commander-in-

Chief. As proof, I offer these few examples; we are chartering new camps in four departments,

in Utah we are making progress on having US Hwy 6 once again designated as the G.A.R

Highway, and in the Chesapeake the brothers are supporting the preservation of battlefield land

near Manassas as well as the reburial of Union soldiers remains at Arlington. Each of you can be

proud to belong to this great organization, which daily fulfills its mission to preserve, honor the

men who preserved the Union and set a people free from bondage.

May God Bless each of you, our organization, and our nation.

In Fraternity, Charity, and Loyalty

Your Brother and servant

Mark R. Day

Commander-in-Chief, Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War

Lincoln Tomb Ceremony – April 2018.

All are invited to participate in the 62nd Annual Lincoln Tomb Ceremony, sponsored by the SUVCW and MOLLUS, commemorating the 152nd Anniversary of President Lincoln’s death. It will be held at the Lincoln Tomb in Oak Ridge Cemetery in Springfield, IL at 10 AM on Saturday, April 14, 2018.

Headquarters Hotel: President Abraham Lincoln Hotel, 701 E. Adams St., Springfield,IL 62701. The room rate is $100.00 for single – quad. A10% dining discount at Lindsay’s Restaurant is included. Call 1-866-788-1860 for reservations and mention “Sons of Union Veterans”. Reserve your room by March 23, 2018. After this, the remaining blocked rooms will be released.

Wreaths may be ordered from local Springfield florists. Instruct the florist to have the wreath delivered c/o the Lincoln Tomb, Oak Ridge Cemetery, Springfield, by 9 AM on Saturday, April 14th.

Luncheon will be held at the President Abraham Lincoln Hotel at 12:30PM. The luncheon program  will feature a talk by Robert Amsler, Jr. on “Railroads: Coming of Age in the Civil War”. Luncheon cost is $35.00 per person.

REGISTRATION FORM: Lincoln Tomb 2018

For event info, go to the SUVCW web site ( or contact Robert Petrovic at: or 636-274-4567.


Commander in Chief’s message November, 2017

Commander-in-Chief’s message to the membership #3/2017-18


I apologize for not communicating with you in October.  I began to put together a message several times but set them aside to deal with the business of the Order or travel for an event.

Let me begin by talking about this coming weekends Remembrance Day events.  Remembrance Day is perhaps the single most important event that the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War and the Allied Orders participate in yearly. It is the day we take time to remember the Boys in Blue who went off to preserve our great nation, Abraham Lincoln our greatest President, and the men of the G.A.R. who set the example of dedication to the preservation of our history for the Allied Orders of the G.A.R to follow.

Remembrance Day is also a time when many decedents of the men who fought at Gettysburg come to pay their respects to their valiant ancestors by visiting the various monuments and memorials that dot the landscape or to walk the ground over which their ancestors fought and sometimes paid the ultimate sacrifice.  Throughout the weekend there will be many ceremonies and events that will at times challenge our ability to cope with, but we will somehow manage and on Sunday afternoon we will once again feel the pride which comes from having done our duty to honor and remember.

Remembrance Day is organized and put on by the Sons Veterans Reserve under the leadership of Major General Robert Grim and his excellent staff.  I remind all who attend to work with the Sons Veterans Reserve and to obey the directions of the Sons Veterans Reserve Provost Marshall, Major David Hann as we conduct the Woolson Monument Ceremonies in Ziglar’s Grove at 11:00 am and later in the day the annual parade, which will have a slightly modified route this year.  Perhaps some of you have heard of the recent article in the Gettysburg times that is related to Remembrance Day and have concerns.  I want to ensure you that the Sons Veterans Reserve Leadership is working in close cooperation with the Gettysburg Police, the National Park Police, and many other law enforcement agencies to ensure that we have a safe and successful weekend.  Barbara and I will be arriving on Friday evening at the Eisenhower.  I am truly looking forward to seeing and speaking with as many of my Brothers and Sisters in the Allied Orders as possible and hope they will take the time to seek me out.



Now a few other items that need to be noted for the benefit of the membership.

  1. It has come to my attention through the National Headquarters staff, that we have members in each department who while active members in their respective Departments and Camps are not receiving the Banner because they do not appear on the active membership role maintained at National HQ. This discrepancy appears to be caused when a member is brought in to a Department or Camp and for some reason his application is not forwarded to National HQ.  To rectify this discrepancy, I request that Departments and Camps audit or review their rosters for Brothers who are in this situation and provide the required paperwork to the National HQ as soon as possible.
  2. This past week, I issued a ruling on a question, which was posed to myself and the National Counselor on the payment of Department and Camp Dues by Life Members. This ruling went out as General Order #6 and I invite you to read it.  You can find it on the National Website by clicking the Governance Link at the top of the Home Page and then looking on the left-hand side of the governance page for the General Orders of the CinC.  I encourage all Brothers to be familiar with the National Website’s Governance Page as that is where most of the important information and documents of the order is located
  3. I have been actively traveling in support of the SUVCW. Among the more significant events were an invitation to speak to the Sons of Veterans Spanish American War Congress in Crewe, Virginia, an invitation to attend and speak at the Central Region Allied Orders of the G.A.R meeting in Cleveland, Ohio, an invitation to attend and speak at the Military Order Loyal Legion of the United States Congress in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, and an invitation to attend the Testimonial Dinner given in honor of Sister Ramona Greenwalt, President of the Auxiliary to the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War in Alliance, Ohio.
  4. Arrangements have been made to hold the Spring meeting of the Council of Administration near Nashville, TN on March 23rd and 24th
  5. I would ask that you continue to pray for those Brothers in Texas, Florida, and California who experienced hardship because of Natural Disasters.
  6. I want to thank all the Departments and Camps who have responded to my request that they assist the Department of Illinois’s Stephenson Memorial Plaza Project with donations. I am currently having the streamers designed and intend to begin awarding them in the new year.  I also apologize for not stating that a brick in the Memorial Plaza cost $150.00 in my earlier message.  I understand however, that in some cases local SUVCW Camps and ASUVCW Auxiliaries have worked together purchase a brick, and I find that a heartwarming indication of our cooperation and  joint belief in honoring the founder of the G.A.R.
  7. I would ask that you be diligent in completing your annual reports and remind the Camp and Department Secretaries that we now have an official membership card, which contains proprietary information, and is available from the Quartermaster.  Instructions for printing the cards can be found on the National Website under Forms on the Governance page.


  1. Previously, I made you aware of the efforts of the Brothers of the Department of Tennessee to preserve historic Fort Negley in Nashville from commercial development. That effort continues and has now received the backing of several State and National Preservation experts and organizations.  If you would like more information, I am sure the Brothers in Tennessee would be happy to answer your questions.
  2. Chief of Staff, Brother Faron Taylor, and I have almost completed the CinC Department Encampment Visitation Schedule.  There are a few dates left but it is my hope to finalize the schedule and assign representatives to those Department Encampments, I cannot attend by the CofA meeting this coming Sunday in Gettysburg.
  3. Recruiting new members remains everyone’s job. I would also continue to ask for your diligence with new members and process their applications expeditiously.  Nothing is more damaging to our efforts than holding up the processing and initiation of new members, and once you have new members get them and yourselves involved in activities that promote our motto of Fraternity, Charity, and Loyalty.

As always, it is my hope that these CinC messages help in keeping the membership aware of the activities of your national officers and the important events / projects that are being conducted by our Camps and Departments.  I encourage each Camp and Department to keep me informed on their activities and needs by emailing me at or if it is something needing immediate attention calling me at the number listed on the National Website.

In Fraternity, Charity, and Loyalty

Mark R. Day

Commander-in-Chief Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War

CinC message 1 regarding Remembrance Day security concerns

Brothers and Sisters of Allied Orders,

I have spoken with the leadership of the Sons Veterans Reserve and they have provided the following official statement on Security for the Remembrance Day events:

SECURITY NOTICE The Gettysburg Pennsylvania Police Department, in cooperation with the Pennsylvania State Police and the National Park Service have developed and put into place a comprehensive plan to address any security issues that might develop during the Remembrance Day Weekend, 2017 and in particular, the 61st Annual Remembrance Day Parade to be held on Saturday, November 18, 2017. Any questions can be addressed to the Gettysburg Police Department, specifically, Chief Dougherty or Sgt. Weikert. 

Chief Joseph F. Dougherty
Sgt. Larry Weikert

Any additional information that is made available will be shared with you as soon as it is received using a CinC Message /Notice to the Membership, the National FB site, and the National Website

In Fraternity, Charity, and Loyalty
Mark R. Day
Commander-in-Chief Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War

CinC’s Corner: Latest communication

As a promise to the Order, CinC Day stated that he would occasionally post details of his agenda and thinking that do not fall within the binding authority of General Orders. These thoughts and rationale are all presented for the Good of the Order, and CinC Day encourages and values the voice of every Brother on every issue.

Commander-in-Chief’s message to the membership #2/2017-18
I have several purposes in mind as, I begin this message to you this evening. One is to provide information as to the effects the recent wildfires and hurricanes have had on our SUVCW family, a second item is to make you aware of a opportunity to support a very worthwhile project, which reflects the core values of our organization, and lastly to make several announcements.
For the past two weeks, I like many of you have sat transfixed by the images coming from our nations Gulf Coast and Northwest. The events which have unfolded before our eyes, via the twenty-four hours news cycle, have been challenging for our nation and more especially for our SUVCW brothers in Oregon, Texas and Florida. Hurricane Harvey has brought disruption and havoc to the lives of at least two of our Brothers living in Houston, who lost their homes, and Hurricane Irma saw the need for our National Historian Robert Waltz (sic), who lives in Key West, to evacuate his home and workplace. Regrettably we must assume that many additional Brothers have had their lives disrupted and need our prayers and support. In the hope of identifying our Brothers in need, I have contacted the Department leadership in both Texas and Florida and asked them to provide the names of Brothers who need assistance to either myself or Chaplain Jerry. This will allow us to communicate the needs of our Brothers and Sisters to those of you who want to assist in their effort to recover from this most assuredly life changing experience. As information becomes available, we will disseminate it through our National Website and National Facebook page. I would ask that you periodically look at those sites for updates on our Brothers and Sisters who have been impacted by these natural disasters. I would also encourage you to consider contributing to the relief of the people in Oregon, Texas, and Florida through the charity of your choice to the extent you can do so without harming yourselves.

Now on to my second purpose. Many of you are aware of the Department of Illinois efforts to establish a memorial plaza at the grave of Dr. Stephenson, the founder of the Grand Army of the Republic in Petersburg, Ill. This past June my wife and I stopped by the grave site and had the chance to see the improvements that have been made. To say that the improvements were impressive would be an understatement. The beautiful Italian marble benches, each reflecting the emblems of one of the Allied Orders, are spectacular and the newly installed paving stones that will ultimately surround the obelisk, marking Dr. Stephenson’s grave, give evidence to the beautiful setting that will be created; making the plaza a lasting and powerful testimony to the Allied Orders fulfillment of their joint goal to preserve and honor the memory of the Grand Army of the Republic and those who sacrificed so much to preserve our nation.
It is my heartfelt desire to see the memorial plaza completed and available for all to see and to provide a tangible symbol for educating the public about the Grand Army. To that end, I am asking that each camp and department consider donating to this project so that the memorial plaza can be completed in the coming year. The Department of Illinois has a plan to continue the work of installing the paving stones and two flag poles, but funding is necessary for its completion. Information on the project can be found on the Department of Illinois Website and I encourage you to look it over. As an incentive, I will provide an appropriate certificate to any camp that donates at least $100 and an appropriate streamer to any department that has at least 75% of its camps donate at least $100.00.

Now to the last of my purposes; announcements.
1. Brother Eric Richhart has been elected by the Council of Administration to fill the role of National Expansion Officer.

2. I have reappointed PCinC Grim and PCinC Darby for a term of two years on the Constitution and Regulations Committee said terms to expire in 2019.

3. The Listing of National Officers and Committee Assignments has been updated and I would ask that you review and familiarize yourself with it. These are the folks you will need to know if you have questions.

4. With the end of the year approaching we will soon be electing Camp Officers and preparing reports. I would ask that you be diligent in completing your reports and remind the Camp and Department Secretaries that we now have an official membership card, which contains proprietary information, and is available from the Quartermaster. Instructions for printing the cards can be found on the National Website under Forms on the Governance page.

5. Once again, the Sons Veterans Reserve is planning a fabulous weekend of events for Remembrance Day November 17-19. I hope that many of you will be able to make it to this very special event and I look forward to the opportunity of meeting and speaking with you.

6. I would like to make you aware of the efforts of the Brothers of the Department of Tennessee to preserve historic Fort Negley in Nashville from commercial development. If you would like more information, I am sure the Brothers in Tennessee would be happy to answer your questions.

7. I would encourage those Departments or individuals who would like me to attend their encampments or events; to contact the Chief of Staff, Brother Faron Taylor, so they can be placed on the schedule and advised of my availability.

8. Recruiting new members in everyone’s job. Those of you who were at the National Encampment in Lansing will remember that, I asked for each member to always carry an application form #3 in their pocket. You never know where the opportunity will arise to make a new Brother. Take advantage of the moment and let (Carpe Diem) be our by-word in recruiting. I would also ask that you be diligent with new members and process their applications expeditiously. Nothing is more damaging to our efforts than holding up the processing and initiation of new members, and once you have new members get them and yourselves involved in activities that promote our motto of Fraternity, Charity, and Loyalty.

It is my hope that these CinC messages help in keeping the membership aware of the activities of your national officers and the important events / projects that are being conducted by our Camps and Departments. I encourage each Camp and Department to keep me informed on their activities and needs by emailing me at or if it is something needing immediate attention calling me at the number listed on the National Website.

In Fraternity, Charity, and Loyalty

Mark R. Day
Commander-in-Chief Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War

Message from National Chaplain re: Houston Flooding

I am sure we are all mindful of the disaster that the tropical storm and hurricane has done to Texas.  I am also sure that each one of the brothers in our Order is contributing to the Salvation Army, the Red Cross or other philanthropic organizations.  At the church service I conducted last Sunday, I took up a collection for the folks in Camp 2 – Houston, Texas.  I have several hundred dollars that I will be sending to:
PDC Donald L. Gates
Sec/Tres  – Dept of Texas
1205 Balboa Circle
Plano, TX 75075
It is my sincere hope that you find it in your heart to send a contribution to help our Brothers in the wake and flooding of the hurricane.  I am sure they will know what to do with it.
Please spread this message.
In Fraternity, Charity and Loyalty
Chaplain Jerry

Treasurer’s Handbook now available!

National Treasurer David McReynolds has issued the first edition of the SUVCW Treasurer’s Handbook as an aid to all Camp and Department treasurers who work so hard to make sure everything adds up.

“The Treasurer’s Handbook is a very useful tool designed to serve both new Treasurers in Camps and Departments as well as those who have served previously in the position.  The very first chapter goes through some basics of being the Treasurer in the SUVCW.  The handbook not only covers the routine duties of the Treasurer but is full of tax information as well.  For example, the chapter on forming a new camp provides a guide to obtaining an EIN online.  The handbook also covers filing the Form 990N and provides guidance on a numbers of issues in the Constitution and Regulations.  Everything in the handbook is presented in clear, easy to understand language.”

Brother McReynolds hopes that the Treasurer’s Handbook will be a useful asset and also states that the guide will be flexible and able to be updated as rules and regulations within our Order and with the IRS change over time.

Still looking for the downloadable PDF? Please click here: Treasurer’s Handbook or find it on the Governance page under Forms.

A Wonderful 136th National Encampment!

Brothers, Sisters and families and friends:

We had such a wonderful experience in Lansing, and the Department of Michigan hosted the largest National Encampment in over 20 years. At the end of the day, it was also an Encampment that spoke volumes about Fraternity, Charity and Loyalty at every level of our organization. Congratulations to all of the award winners that recognized by PCinC Martin, particularly those well-traveled Brothers who received the Elmer “Bud” Atkinson Lifetime Achievement Award! And congratulations to all of the elected and appointed officers for the 2017-2018 term. Commander-in-Chief Mark Day’s remarks were moving and timely, and we should all be excited to work with him and his agenda this year!

The Meritorious Service Award with Gold Star
-Dexter Bishop, Department MA
-David McReynolds Department TN
-Terry Dyer, Department IL
-Nick Kaup, Department IL
-Don Palmer, Department MO
-Henry Shaw, Department OH

Elmer (Bud) Atkinson Lifetime Achievement Award
-Bob Wolz, Department Ohio
-Ed Krieser, Department Missouri
-Lee Stone, Department. Chesapeake
-Danny Wheeler, Department New York
-Rich Orr, Department Pennsylvania

Abraham Lincoln CinC’s Award – Camp Custer Camp #17, Department NJ

The Cornelius F. Whitehouse Award–
-Eugene G. Mortorff, Garfield Camp #1, Department Chesapeake
-Danny L. Wheeler, Sydney Camp #41, Department NY

The Meritorious Service Award-
-Michael P. Downs, Department TN
-Dave Daley, Department WI
-Daniel F. Rittel, Department Iowa
-Jeff Graf, Department WI

The David R. Medert Award – David A. Rish, Dept. OH 13 new members

The National Aide Award-
Doug Fidler, McTeer Camp #39, Dept. TN
Eric Richhart, Smith Camp #1, Dept CO/WO
Jeff Graf Col. Hans C. Heg Camp # 15, Dept. WI
James P. McGuire, Govs. Elisha Dyer Camp #7, RI
Steve Flickinger Sherman Camp #93, Dept. OH
David Rish, Parrott Camp #33, Dept. OH
James Johnson, Ruger Camp #1, Dept NC

The Augustus P. Davis/ Conrad Linder Award- Department of Ohio with 54

The Under Forty Award– Department of New Jersey with 10

Marshall Hope Award for Best Newsletter –
“The Sharpshooter” Robert Finch Camp # 14 Dept. MI
“The March”, Department GA/SC

The U.S. Grant Award – Department Georgia 60% increase in membership

The Horace Greeley Award- outstanding website. Department of Iowa

The Founder’s Award – The American Veterans Heritage Center, Dayton, Ohio

The Certificate of Recognition-
-Garrard County Public Library, Department of Kentucky
-Brother Bruce Austin, Major James H. Bridgewater Camp #7, Department of Kentucky