Minutes of the October 19, 2002 meeting of the Tampa Chapter SAR

 

President Tetrick called the meeting to order at 12:03. Jim Washburn offered the invocation. The secretary led the pledge to the flag and the President led the pledge to the SAR.

 

Members present: Jim Washburn, Dwight Tetrick, Fred Patton, Walter Lane, Joseph Hill, Cy Gamber, Claude Ritchie, Bob Yarnell, and Kevin Yarnell.

 

Welcome guests: Billie Washburn, Rod Stebbins, Richard Hardesty, Fimie Ritchie

 

The SAR membership approved the minutes of the September meeting as published in the newsletter.

 

The secretary reported on the State BOM meeting being held this weekend in Clearwater. Dues should be given or mailed to the treasurer in the next month. We must submit the annual report prior to December 20, 2002.

 

The treasurer reported a balance of $2,180.92.

 

The secretary then presented President Tetrick with two Supplemental Ancestor Certificates for ancestors George Emery and George Clemens. This gives Dwight a total of 12 supplementals. Dwight took a few moments to explain supplementals and the membership application process to our prospective members.

 

President Tetrick reported on the formation of the nominating committee: Robert Yarnell, Dwight Tetrick, Jack Bolen, and Kevin Yarnell. They have proposed:

 

President- Dwight Tetrick

Vice President- Jack Bolen

Secretary / Treasurer- Kevin Yarnell

Chaplain- James Washburn

Surgeon- Walter Lane, Jr., MD

Historian- Robert Yarnell

Sergeant-at-Arms- Fred Patton

Newsletter Editor- Daniel Stutzman

 

There being no other business the meeting recessed for lunch.

 

President Tetrick reconvened the meeting and introduced Compatriot Bob Yarnell who spoke on “The Benedict Arnold We Don’t Know”.

 

Bob pointed out that the two reasons that the Revolutionary Army was a viable entity in the middle of the war are George Washington and Benedict Arnold. This last seems odd considering that Arnold is most known for a treasonist act. The speaker then detailed some of Benedict Arnold’s early successes including the conquest of the Fort at Ticonderoga, the moving of canon in winter for Washington’s use, the very near capture of Quebec, and the defeat of a British invasion from Canada using simple made boats.  At Saratoga, Arnold was not involved in the first days fighting but by disobeying an arrest order he turned the tide of battle on the second day and won the engagement. Arnold is wounded for the second time at the end of the fighting.

 

Gates, the commander at Saratoga, took all the credit for the victory while Arnold received none. This may have been the beginnings of Arnold’s difficulty. He is assigned to command the garrison at Philadelphia, a post he thought did not reward his efforts. Here he began to socialize with loyalist sympathizers there and fell in love with Peggy Shippens, a loyalist. He bought a mansion which put him in debt to loyalist bankers.

 

The debt, his ego, and the loyalist company he kept, all worked together for him to consider switching sides. He turned down a battle command, an act not characteristic of the early Arnold. He does accept a command at West Point, a strategic point on the Hudson River and here conspired to give the plans for the defenses to the British.

 

The rest of Arnold’s life is rather tragic. He dies in England in debt. It is reported that Arnold requested to put on his Continental Army uniform just prior to his death and that he was buried in the uniform.

 

Benedict Arnold’s story can teach many lessons. It is instructive to consider what might have happened had he been killed at Saratoga rather than only wounded. At that point he would have been considered an equal to Washington in stature and importance. Certainly the two men took radically different paths after this point.

 

A brief question and answer period followed.

 

President Tetrick announced the committee appointments for 2003 as follows:

Archives- Bob Yarnell

CAR Liaison- Bob Yarnell

DAR Liaison- Fred Patton

Knight Essay Contest- Kevin Yarnell

Law Enforcement, Fire Safety and Heroism- Jack Bolen

Medals & Awards- Dwight Tetrick

Senior ROTC- Dwight Tetrick

Junior ROTC- Kevin Yarnell

 

Rod Stebbins won the 50/50 earning $7.00 for himself and $8.00 for the chapter.

 

President Tetrick led the recessional and Jim Washburn gave the benediction. The meeting adjourned at 1:25 pm.

 

Respectfully submitted,

 

Kevin Yarnell

Chapter Secretary