Historical Activities and Preservation

David_Phelps-01Historic Preservation

In November 2000, the National Trust for Historic Preservation presented its Trustee Emeritus Award for Excellence in the Stewardship of Historic Sites to The National Society of The Colonial Dames of America “for acquiring, restoring, and interpreting a collection of historic properties that offer invaluable opportunities to experience the rich variety of America’s heritage.

More than 70 properties are affiliated with the Corporate Societies nationwide.  Of these 41 are wholly owned and/or completely managed by the Corporate Societies.  For a map and links to these museums, see NSCDA museum properties.  In addition The NSCDA maintains three houses:


Dumbarton House
NSCDA Headquarters – home of Joseph Nourse, first Register of the Treasury. Built circa 1800 in Washington D.C. DumbartonHouse.org

Gunston Hall
Home of George Mason, father of the Bill of Rights. Built in 1755 in Mason’s Neck Virginia. http://www.gunstonhall.org/

Sulgrave Manor
Home of Lawrence Washington, direct ancestor of George Washington, our first President. Built in 1529 in Northamptonshire, England. SulgraveManor.org.uk

The California Society has worked to preserve and furnish historical properties within the State.  Chief among these is the Octagon House in San Francisco.   Over the past 100 years members have contributed to:

  • Hugo Reid Adobe, Los Angeles
  • La Casa Machado Y Stewart, San Diego
  • La Casa de Estudillo, San Diego
  • Mount Pleasant House, Los Angeles
  • Sherman-Gilbert house, San Diego
  • William Heath Davis House, San Diego
  • Jose Eusebio Boronda Adobe, Salinas
  • Sikes Adobe Farmhouse, San Diego

Historical Activities

The NSCDA has a long tradition of publishing works of historical interest and participating in surveys of important historical artifacts.  The National Society is inventorying American Samplers.  This database provides a unique opportunity to learn about the education, skills, thoughts and feelings of thousands of girls and young women. See NSCDA Sampler Surveys.

In addition, the NSCDA has made its Ancestry Bibliography Register available. This register provides a central listing of materials published by or about colonial ancestors and their descendants. Visit this website at: ancestorbibliography.org

The NSCDA-CA has published over 40 books and articles.  Several of these are available on this website. For a list and links, please visit the Publications Page.

Photo credit: David Phelps