Ella Virginia Houck Holloway Chapter
Southern Maryland
Est. July 2, 1918*

*Named Gov. William Smallwood Chapter until May 26, 2010

About Us

The purposes of the National Society United States Daughters of 1812

The Purposes of this society shall be to promote patriotism, to preserve and increase knowledge of the history of the American people, by the preservation of documents and relics, the marking of historic spots, the recording of family history and traditions, the celebration of various patriotic anniversaries, teaching and emphasizing the heroic deeds of the civil, military and naval life of those who molded this government between the close of the American Revolution and the close of the War of 1812, and to urge Congress to compile and publish authentic records of men in civil, military, and naval service from 1784 to 1815 inclusive.
Chapter History
Our Chapter was formed on July 2, 1918 as the Governor William Smallwood Chapter.  Unfortunately, in the early 2000's the chapter's membership started to dissolve, chapter records disappeared, and our chapter nearly folded.  Due to the revitalization efforts of then President Sandy Cornish, our chapter thrives today.  One order of revitalization business was a chapter name change.  Many other area society chapters are also named after Governor William Smallwood (SAR, CAR, etc). The two other Maryland U.S.D. 1812 chapters at that time were named after women.  It was only fitting to rechristen ourselves with a better fitting name that kept with the consistency with the other MD chapters.  Our name change was approved on May 26, 2010 by then President National Nona Thompson Quinn.
So, who was Ella Virginia Houck Holloway?
Ella Virginia Houck Holloway, born next to the Shot Tower in Baltimore in 1862, was instrumental in persuading US. Congressman Charles J. Linthicum to introduce a bill in Congress which would mandate the Star Spangled Banner as the National Anthem.  On 3 March 1931, Congressional Resolution (46 Stat. 1508) was signed into law by President Herbert Hoover.  The Baltimore Sun reported that "Mrs. Holloway considered herself an expert on the use and display of the flag and to that end toured the city to see that the flag was not improperly displyed.  She did have rather impressive credentials in this department, having served as chairman of the Committee on the Correct Use of the Flag of the United States Daughter of 1812." The Sun further reported, "She always appeared in public wearing a tall shako (a cylindrical beaver hat with plume) that rose a foot above her head." she told the Sun in 1937, "The general contours of my hat and the Constitution of the United States must remain unchanged."

Mrs. Holloway was admitted to the National Society United States Daughters of 1812 on 16 January 1903 and served as Maryland State President beginning in 1918.  Upon the death of Mrs. Holloway in 1940, a Sun editorial declared, "Mrs. Reuben Ross Holloway, who died yesterday, would have been a noteworthy person in any era."  Our Chapter marked her grave in a ceremony on 25 March 2006.