The Commercial Appeal
Daughters of 1812 gather to honor Andrew Jackson
Memphians among attendees at wreath-laying
Thirty members of the Tennessee Society of the United States Daughters of 1812 gathered at the Hermitage, near Nashville, for a wreath-laying at the tombs of Andrew and Rachel Jackson. A celebration commemorated the Battle of New Orleans.
Among those attending were Bettie Gustafson, serving the Tennessee Society as honorary state president and member of the Piomingo Chapter of Millington, and president of the Piomingo Chapter Olivia Chandler of Germantown.
More than 3,200 were in attendance, hearing guest speaker for the event, Pulitzer Prizewinning author Jon Meacham of Chattanooga and now Washington, who described Jackson as a “mostimportant, but least-known figure from the middle of our history, a pivotal political figure between Jefferson and Lincoln.”
The Tennessee Society was founded in Nashville in 1909.
The Daughters of 1812 have participated in the Hermitage wreath layings since that time.
There are 400 members of the Daughters of 1812 in chapters across Tennessee, with two in West Tennessee — Piomingo in Millington and Tulip Grove Chapter in Jackson.
One purpose of the Daughters of 1812 is to honor War of 1812 veterans by marking their graves with the insignia of the society
The first such marker was placed at the Hermitage in 1915 at the grave of Andrew Jackson with Daughters of 1812 participating with the Hermitage Ladies Association.
hile the building will look fairly complete from the outside, on the inside construction will continue on a 1,000-person auditorium with stadium seating and orchestra pit, choral rehearsal room, theater and dance studio, practice rooms, conservatory room, dressing rooms and a workshop for building and painting sets. The building is also designed to include student visual arts displays in common areas and will house the school’s business administrative offices.
“I’ve never been a part of a more carefully planned project. We have had dozens upon dozens of meetings where I’ve been able to make sure the needs of the students and teachers are fully met down to the smallest detail,” said J.D. Frizzell, the school’s fine arts director.
Those details include a water fountain in the choir room which will both give students access to water with just a few steps and help with classroom management by keeping stu. dents in the classroom.
Frizzell said he will also have a much easier time getting professional musicians and groups from all over the country to come to Briarcrest for collaborative performances with what will be greatly improved recording capabilities over what the school currently uses in East Memphis.
Briarcrest’s OneVoice vocal jazz ensemble has performed with Grammywinning groups such as New York Voices and the new facility will open up more opportunities now that the group will not have to rely on outside facilities for rehearsals and performances.