Chapter Activities and Projects

Cahuilla Chapter has a tradition of recognizing and rewarding individuals with Daughters of the American Revolution's various awards. Each year, at least one person in our valley is given The DAR Community Service Award. We have given a conservation award to two individuals who saved from commercial development the lands now called the Whitewater Wetlands Conservancy. The Reserve is open to the public for recreation and education.

The chapter awarded the highest medal DAR bestows, The Medal of Honor, to a retired Major General, a command pilot with 6,500 hours of flying time, with a tour of duty that comprised 337 combat missions. He holds multiple decorations and awards.

In the last three years, we have honored several remarkable women. One revived the Virginia Waring Piano Competition, bringing to the desert outstanding and promising young musical students from all over the world, and showcasing their talents. Another brought to desert theaters simulcasts of performances of the Metropolitan.This year we will recognize two women, one is a member of the Tribal Council of the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians. She will be honored for creating the Agua Caliente Cultural Museum and initiating fundraisers, such as "Dinner in the Canyons" to fund a larger and permanent museum housing artifacts of ancient Indian Villages found in the Canyons. The second candidate for a Community Service Award gives much time to The Virginia Waring Piano Competition, Brandeis University Women's Committee, Palm Springs Air Museum, World Affairs Council, College of the Desert Foundation, to name a few of her commitments.

We honor veterans and military personnel by collecting items to be stocked at the local USO Center and also, by sending telephone cards to Landstulf Medical Center in Germany for those wounded in combat and sent to the Center.

Very important in DAR's tenets is working with students in middle and high schools to encourage the study of our nation's history and knowledge of the Constitution.  Essay Contests with topics approved by DAR are annually conducted requiring students to do research into our country's history. The work with the schools culminates in a Student Tea held each year honoring, not only those who are winners, but those who participated.  In addition, we give medals and awards to five ROTC cadets, a music award on the high school level and an award to a student nurse at the local junior college. 

We also recognize and highlight a Coachella Valley teacher with an Outstanding Teacher of American History Award. This presentation is given at the last meeting of the year and coordinates with the program showcasing the student winners of the Essay Contest.

Current projects are placing on display at a local library 90 volumes of genealogical research books designated as "The Cahuilla Collection." These research sources are available not only to prospective DAR members but also, the public in general. It is planned that Cahuilla Chapter will sponsor workshops for the public on how to begin to research a family history.

High on our agenda is preparing to place an historical marker at the Palm Springs Air Museum. The Air Museum is two large hangers housing multiple aircraft from the World War II era and earlier, as well as, honoring the pilots that flew them.

Regarding the American Heritage committee which gives opportunity for creative endeavors, one of our members was honored on the national level with a poem she had written.  Presently, one of our members is creating a series of paintings depicting the historical sites of the pioneer settlement in the Mohawk Valley in New York.

Our chapter recently honored 29 members who have  been in DAR for more than 25 years. The member with the most years, joined in 1942, and therefore was a member for more than 70 years. One member, with 64 years of service, began as a page at Continental Congress.