As legal heir to the Grand Army of the Republic (GAR), preservation and protection of GAR monuments and memorials is one of the most important purposes of the SUVCW. The purpose of this program is to physically search out, inspect, and catalog each and every GAR and Civil War monument and memorial that can be found.
Monument, Memorial, and Grave Preservation
The Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War (SUVCW) is dedicated to preserving the history and legacy of veteran heroes who fought and worked to save the Union in the American Civil War. Part of that mission involves saving and protecting our nation’s endangered memorials, graves, and monuments. These memorials are part of our national heritage and honor American soldiers who lost their lives in the preservation of freedom and union. The SUVCW is working to preserve these memorials so that future generations can learn from them and can learn to appreciate their hard-won freedom.
National Grave Registration Project: The goal of the SUVCW National Grave Registration Project is to locate the final resting places of all Union Civil War Veterans, and enter that information into the National Graves Registration Database. This undertaking is rather large and needs as many interested people to assist as possible.
Grand Army of the Republic records project: An ongoing project sponsored by the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War (SUVCW) to document the location of repositories of records of the Grand Army of the Republic (GAR).
Monument & Memorial Project: As legal heir to the Grand Army of the Republic (GAR), preservation of GAR memorials is one of the most important purposes of the SUVCW. The purpose of this program is to physically search out, inspect, and catalog each and every GAR and Civil War memorial that can be found.
https://www.suvcw.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/Form-62fi.pdf): The purpose of this fund is to assist Camps and Departments in their efforts to refurbish and restore Civil War related monuments and memorials. The grant fund is open to the preservation and restoration of Civil War monuments and memorials as well as supporting the production of new monuments.
National Policy on Monument Protection and Preservation
Coordinates 38.909644°N 77.029647°WCoordinates: 38.909644°N 77.029647°WEquestrian statue of John A. LoganU.S. National Register of Historic PlacesU.S. Historic districtContributing propertyPart of Civil War Monuments in Washington, D.C.NRHP reference No. 78000257Added to NRHP: September 20, 1978Location: Logan Circle, Washington, D.C., United StatesDesigner: Franklin Simmons (sculptor)Richard Morris Hunt (architect)Fonderia Nelli (founder)Cranford Paving Company (contractor)Material: bronze (sculpture) bronze and granite (base)Length: 10 feet (3.0 m)Width: 4.05 feet (1.23 m)Height : 12 feet (3.7 m)Opening date-April 9, 1901
1. Whereas the 2020 National Encampment voted to abolish the existing Battlefield Flag and Monument Policy (August 2017) in order to be able to develop a policy regarding the protection of war memorials and monuments that is appropriate for the current conditions in the United States; and,
2. Whereas the Special Committee for Monument Protection Policy diligently and thoughtfully developed a draft policy and presented it to the Council of Administration for review and approval; and,
3. Whereas the Council of Administration carefully reviewed the draft policy and subsequently voted to approve it;
4. Therefore the National Policy on Monument Protection and Preservation attached to this General Order has been adopted as the official policy of the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War regarding war monument protection. It will be published on the SUVCW National Policy web page.
5. This policy builds upon the solid foundation of earlier General Orders, policies and resolutions on this critical topic. It clearly articulates the Order’s position, provides a basis for engaging the public with a unified message, and allows the ability for a flexible response for different conditions and situations.
6. The new monument protection policy intentionally does not take a position on the status of the Confederate battle flag; therefore, the SUVCW is officially silent on this issue.
7. All Brothers, Camps and Departments, Camps shall follow and refer to this policy, especially when communicating with members of the public, government, or press.
Ordered this 9th Day of December, 2020
Brian C. Pierson
SONS OF UNION VETERANS OF THE CIVIL WAR
ON MONUMENT PROTECTION AND PRESERVATION
The Sons of Union Veterans condemns the criminal vandalism or unlawful destruction of monuments dedicated to the memory of American Soldiers from all wars as a breach of faith and duty to our ancestors, and to the principles of freedom they fought to preserve and pass on to their descendants.
I. The primary purpose of the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War is to perpetuate the memory of the soldiers and sailors who fought and sacrificed for the Union from 1861 to 1865 and in many cases were wounded or died to save the United States of America.
a. It is our solemn duty to honor the soldiers belonging to the Union, “Boys in Blue” who fought that terrible war and to oversee the process of preserving the memories of those soldiers and sailors, and their courage, tenacity and strength, by raising monuments commemorating their service and deeds. The erection of such monuments has continued down through the years, extending even unto the present day. These monuments can be found in cities, towns, and villages across the entire country, and indeed, beyond our shores.
b. Furthermore, we seek to honor the men and women, both public and private, who provided the inspiration and leadership, which lead to the salvation of the Union and the liberation of a people from bondage.
c. One of the ways we perpetuate the memory of the “Boys in Blue” is to care for and work to repair those monuments dedicated to their sacrifice when the need arises. To this end, we have established ways by which we may assist in the erection and repair of monuments and memorials. This work is ongoing.
d. Recent, criminal acts of vandalism and outright destruction of monuments dedicated to our Union heroes by groups or individuals demanding their elimination or removal have increased. With regard to the vandalism or destruction of such monuments it is the policy of the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War, that there should be criminal prosecution of perpetrators of such crimes by legal authority.
e. In cases of organized attempts to remove monuments, those efforts to remove them are to be actively opposed in all ways that are both practical and legal. The methods by which this active opposition would happen will differ from case to case, given the unique situation involved in each event. However, in all cases, the Commander-in-Chief, or his designee, acting with his instructions and under his authority, should set the course of action to be followed in addressing the problem.
II. Monuments serve the necessary purpose of inspiring and educating future generations of Americans on the sacrifices made by their forefathers. Further, monuments are visible signs of the patriotism and selflessness shown by American soldiers and sailors, who placed the country before their own lives and fortunes, to ensure the preservation of the Nation. By this policy, we state our intent and reaffirm our commitment to our honored dead and dedicate ourselves to do all in our power as an organization, to ensure that the memorials to them will be preserved for the inspiration and education of future generations.
Approved by the Council of Administration, 6 November 2020
Monument Protection Policy
Having received some questions and comments from our fellow Brothers on the SUVCW’s National Policy on Monument Protection, as well as having heard of some posts on social media that misunderstand what the policy says and means, I would like to take a few minutes to offer some thoughts for your consideration.
Today, our great nation is faced with anti-patriots who have been and are illegally destroying private and public property. They have pulled down statues of Union Civil War heroes and even of President Lincoln. They have attacked monuments and memorials to great Americans from every period in our history.
In this context, the 2020 National Encampment directed that our National Policy on Monument Protection be updated in order to be relevant to what has been going on today. Our National Policy on Monument Protection was carefully written with this goal in mind. The introductory paragraph is the keystone for the rest of the policy.
“The Sons of Union Veterans condemns the criminal vandalism or unlawful destruction of monuments dedicated to the memory of American Soldiers from all wars as a breach of faith and duty to our ancestors, and to the principles of freedom they fought to preserve and pass on to their descendants.”
I want to emphasize that it is the policy of the SUVCW to honor American veterans, as defined by Federal (Public) Law, from ALL wars. Anyone who says otherwise is flat wrong.
Some Brothers have asked, “because the policy doesn’t specifically mention Civil War monuments, are we are no longer defending our Civil War heritage?” I assure you that our great Order remains as fully dedicated as ever to preserving and teaching the true history of the Civil War. We aren’t retreating on any front. We aren’t bowing to political correctness. We have chosen the best strategy to fight to preserve our nation’s history.
Far from abandoning support for monument preservation for any one era or side, we have expanded our reach to all American Veterans of all wars. That is clearly in line with our charge give to us in our Congressional Charter. Thus, the policy has more of a desired goal of helping to keep green the memories of all our veterans, the things they did, qualities they possessed, and what they stood for. It also combats "cancel-culture" right across the board, better than did the former policy.
If we decide to support legislation to protect monuments, any monuments, we are encouraged to do so by this policy! If we want to oppose the lawful attempts to remove monuments, any monuments, we are encouraged to do so by this policy! If we want to call for prosecution of criminals who maliciously destroy monuments, any monuments, we are encouraged to do so by this policy!
On a related topic, a number of Brothers have expressed their concern regarding the outside commentary in social media and other venues regarding this policy. To this, I would encourage you all to read the policy itself; you will see that such comments are uninformed and baseless.
Brothers, I hope you found this special message helpful in explaining the real background, intent, and impact of the National Policy on Monument Protection.
Thank you for all the great work you do to keep green the memory of the Boys in Blue! Every day you make me more and more proud to be a member of our great Order!