Days Gone By - stories from the past

Do you have an ancestor who served in the War of 1812?


The United States Daughters of 1812 is a patriotic society founded in Cleveland, Ohio, in 1892, whose object is to perpetuate the memory of the founders of America, with their records of service in the French War, the Revolution, and the War of 1812. It was incorporated as a national organization February 25, 1901. Its membership is composed of women who are lineal descendants from an ancestry who assisted in the War of 1812, either as a military or naval officer, a soldier, or a sailor, or in any way gave aid to the cause.

Miss Maud McLure Kelly, of Birmingham, was appointed organizing president for this state on October 8, 1908. On May 6, 1910, the first chapter in the state was organized in Birmingham. It was called the Sims-Kelly chapter, but later the name was changed to Alabama charter chapter.

Maud McLure Kelly in her graduation cap and gown ca. 1908

She was the first woman to practice law in Alabama

by photographer Peddinghaus, Alabama State Archives


Maud McClure Kelly


On January 6, 1915, the Octagon chapter in Mobile, was organized with Mrs. Charles S. Shawhan, as founder and first regent.

The state organization contributed to the placing of a memorial window in St. Michael’s church, Dartmore, England. The state through the Alabama charter chapter marked the beginning of the Jackson trail in Alabama with a boulder at Huntsville and also placed another boulder at Horse Shoe Bend battle field marking the end of the said trail. This celebration took place July 4, 1914.

Monument at Horseshoe Bend, Tallapoosa County, Alabama

Erected July 4, 1914 Horace Perry Collection Alabama State Archives

horseshoe bend stone



Centennial Celebration at Horseshoe Bend – July 4th 1914

horseshoe bend centenial celebration 1914



This chapter was also the instigator of the movement agitating the building of the memorial highway to Andrew Jackson. It also presented portraits of Andrew Jackson to the high schools and maintains a cot at the children’s hospital in Birmingham.

On May 17, 1917, the Alabama organization placed a boulder at Tensaw, marking the location of the famous massacre at Fort Mims.

Boulder at Fort Mims in Baldwin County, Alabama

honoring the victims of the massacre of August 30, 1813

Fort Mims boulder

Officers: Miss Maud McLure Kelly, honorary life president; Mrs. Harry Tutwiler Inge, president; Mrs. Gregory Little Smith, first vicepresident; Mrs. John A. Lusk, second vice-president; Mrs. Robert H. Woodrow, third vice-president; Mrs. B. F. Padgett, recording secretary; Mrs. W. A. Christian, corresponding secretary; Mrs. W. W. Croom, treasurer; Mrs. C. S. Shawhan, historian; Mrs. Stanley Finch, official reader; Mrs. B. E. Adams, auditor.

Charter members, Alabama charter chapter, Birmingham—Miss Elizabeth Benagh, Nashville, Tenn.; Mrs. R. E. D. Irwin, Anniston; Mrs. Griggsby T. Sibley, Birmingham; Miss Maud McClure Kelly, Birmingham; Mrs. Richard B. Kelly, Birmingham; Mrs. Willis Hitzing, Nashville, Tenn.

Charter members, Octagon chapter, Mobile. —Mrs. B. F. Adams, Mrs. W. A. Christian, Mrs. W. W. Croom, Mrs. C. P. Dumas, Mrs. R. E. Gwin, Miss Edith B. Heckert, Mrs. H. M. Hopper, Mrs. H. T. Inge, Mrs. Charles A. L. Johnstone, Mrs. Fiedlia Sledge Jones, Mrs. B. W. Padgett, Mrs. Bion Provost, Mrs. R. A. Rush, Mrs. C. S. Shawhan, Mrs. G. L. Smith, Mrs. R. E. Dumas.



Manuscripts and clippings in the State department of archives and history; Octagon chapter, Mobile, Yearbooks, 1915-16, 1916-17.



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About Donna R Causey

Donna R. Causey, resident of Alabama, was a teacher in the public school system for twenty years. When she retired, Donna found time to focus on her lifetime passion for historical writing. She developed the websites www.alabamapioneers and All her books can be purchased at and Barnes & Noble. She has authored numerous genealogy books. RIBBON OF LOVE: A Novel Of Colonial America (TAPESTRY OF LOVE) is her first novel in the Tapestry of Love about her family where she uses actual characters, facts, dates and places to create a story about life as it might have happened in colonial Virginia. Faith and Courage: Tapestry of Love (Volume 2) is the second book and the third FreeHearts: A Novel of Colonial America (Book 3 in the Tapestry of Love Series) Discordance: The Cottinghams (Volume 1) is the continuation of the story. . For a complete list of books, visit Donna R Causey

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