In 1895, Utah began the process of becoming a state organization with a single chapter. The first chapter was to be called the “Jennie McNeal Chapter” after a Revolutionary War heroine from the famous poem, “The Ride of Jennie McNeal.” However, as Jennie was a fictional heroine, it was suggested a new name be selected.
Harriet Wetmore Sells, a Real Daughter (a daughter of a patriot and a member of DAR), suggested the name “Spirit of Liberty.” Her father was Bela Wetmore, a soldier in the Revolutionary War. Harriet was married to Elija B. Sells, a lumber merchant. The name was accepted and the organization was officially formed on 17 January 1897.
Margaret Blaine Walker Salisbury (circa 1865-1921) was elected Utah’s first State Regent. She was the daughter of Robert C. Walker and Elizabeth Blaine. Margaret was the niece of James G. Blaine, Secretary of State under President Garfield in 1880, and President Harrison in 1888. In 1884, her Uncle James ran against Grover Cleveland for United States President, but was defeated. Margaret was married to Orange J. Salisbury. Today, nine DAR chapters serve throughout the State of Utah to promote education, historic preservation, and patriotism.
National Society Daughters of the American Revolution (NSDAR or DAR) Motto—God, Home, and Country
2016-2019 National Society DAR Theme—Moving Forward in Service to America
2018-2020 Utah State Theme—Anchored in the Past, Steering Towards the Future, Navigating the Present with Service to God, Home, and Country
Scripture Verse—Philippians 2:3-4 Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interest, but also to the interest of others.