DSDI Celebrates a Return to Philadelphia for the Fourth of July

It was wonderful to greet each other in person again at the 114th Annual Congress in Philadelphia July 3-4, 2021. The Mayhew family planned and executed a remarkable weekend focusing on 10 students who represented their Signers. They traveled to Philadelphia with their families to tap the Liberty Bell.

On Saturday morning we honored the Tappers at breakfast at the Wyndham Hotel and gave them gifts including engraved model Liberty Bells for each student, provided by DSDI and the Pennsylvania Society of the Sons of the Revolution, presented by President Rich Pagano.

Our Bell Tappers carried the DSDI banner to and from the Liberty Bell, working with the National Park Service, speaking with the public and then performing a gentle, ceremonial tap at the ceremony. They were introduced by name several times during the weekend. DSDI is very proud of these 10 students and appreciates their families’ dedication.

On Saturday, the Board held a business meeting. Afterward, DSDI members walked to the Museum of the American Revolution. We had a private tour and focused on the tent George Washington used throughout the Revolution. It was wonderful to see our Signers in a 3-D display based on the John Trumbull portrait in the U.S. Capitol.

Members visited Christ Episcopal Church and its Burial Ground, where DSDI had given a granite bench honoring the Signers buried there. We visited the Philadelphia Museum of Art and enjoyed seeing one another again.

On Sunday afternoon we met at Independence Hall’s Long Gallery for our annual meeting. President-General Lucy Duke Tonacci introduced several DSDI leaders who presented their reports, including announcing 56 scholarships. Our members approved changes in our Bylaws and the nominations of officers.

We closed with a picnic dinner at the Wyndham, including a fascinating presentation by Shirley Hunter Smith, Ph.D., about our Signers’ wives during the colonial period.

Plan to join us in Princeton this fall for our next meeting in October.