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Dept Michigan
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John A. Logan Camp No. 1
Grand Rapids, Michigan

 

SUVCW ArmsCorrespondence:

Secretary: Bruce B. Butgereit

Officers:

Commander: William E. Truss
Senior Vice Commander: John Uplinger
Junior Vice Commander: Timothy S. Kolean
Secretary/Treasurer: Bruce B. Butgereit
Chaplain: Doug Shassberger
Boy Scout Coordinator: John Uplinger
Memorials Officer: Bruce B. Butgereit
Historian: Bruce B. Butgereit
Patriotic Instructor: John Uplinger
Graves Registration Officer: Gerry Christiansen
Guide, Guard, Color Guard: Ryan Vazquez
Members of the Council: Harold A. Becker
  John E. Sullivan
  Colin B. Butgereit
Jr ROTC Coordinator John Uplinger
   

NEW! - "Although having 501(c) (4) Tax Exempt Status. “Donations to the Department of Michigan - Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War, its Camps, or Sons of Veterans Reserve Units operating within the Department of Michigan, Are Not Tax Deductible.”

HIGHLIGHTS OF the General John A. Logan Camp No. 1

Meetings

The General John A. Logan Camp No. 1 meets at 7:00 pm on the second Tuesday of every even month (February, April, June, August, October, and December), at the Grand Rapids Veterans Home, 3000 Monroe Avenue NE, Grand Rapids, Michigan. The Champlin Corps No. 41, Woman's Relief Corps meet on the same night at the Veteran's Home in a different room. We often share meeting openings or patriotic programs and sometimes refreshments. Inquiries about the activities of the Camp may be addressed to the Camp contact above.

Annual Dues

The annual dues for Camp No. 1 are $35 and include receipt of the Michigan Messenger, the quarterly newsletter of the Department of Michigan and the Banner, the quarterly publication of the National organization.

A one-time fee of $30 is charged as an application fee.  With this you will receive the badge (medal) of the Order, a Ritual, a pair of white gloves (for parades and memorial services), a color membership certificate, and membership card.

Our Real Son

When the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War was first established in 1881, it was known as the Sons of Veterans.  Every member was the actual son of a veteran of the Civil War.  Over time, the membership in the SUVCW naturally changed to grandsons, great-grandsons or great-nephews, and so on with each passing generation.

Although it may seem impossible to believe that there are still children of a soldier who served in the Civil War living over 150 years after that war began, in February, 2014, there are still twelve known men living who can claim their father fought in the Civil War.  There are thirteen known daughters living.

The General John A. Logan Camp No. 1 has had the distinct honor of having two members who can claim their father fought in the Civil War.  These men are referred to as “Real Sons.”

Mr. Harold Becker

Brother Becker became a member of the Camp in 2001.  His father was Charles Conrad Becker who served in the 128th Indiana Infantry, Co. H in 1864-1866.

After the war, Charles became a member of the Grand Army of the Republic (G.A.R.) Lyon Post No. 9 of Chicago, IL. He would serve as Post Commander for two years.

As a regular attendee of the annual Civil War muster in Jackson, MI, Brother Becker loves to shake the hand of visitors often telling them they are “shaking the hand of a man who once held the hand of a Civil War veteran.”

Our Empty Chair

One of the traditions established by the G.A.R. was referred to as “The Vacant Chair,” wherein an empty chair as set up in the meeting room in memory of those comrades who had passed away.  The chair was usually draped with black cloth and a Stetson or some other military cap.  In keeping with the tradition of the Grand Army of the Republic, Camp 1 maintains a vacant chair in the Executive Boardroom at the Grand Rapids Home for Veterans.

Mr. Edward Blakely

Real Son, Brother Edward Blakely was a member of the Camp from 2000 until his passing in 2003; just six weeks shy of his 100th birthday.  Brother Blakely was one of the most active members of the Camp and Honorary Chair of the Kent County Civil War Monument restoration project 2000-2003.

Other members who have passed on are Brother Thomas LeFurge (2005), Brother Douglas Colley (2005), and Brother Harry Robinson (2010).

Annual Dues

The annual dues for Camp No. 1 are $35 and include receipt of the Michigan Messenger, the quarterly newsletter of the Department of Michigan, Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War and the Banner, the quarterly publication of the National organization.

A one-time fee of $30 is charged as an application fee.  With this you will receive the badge (medal) of the Order, a Ritual, a pair of white gloves (for parades and memorial services), a color membership certificate, and membership card.

Camp History

We are the General John A. Logan, Camp No. 1, Department of Michigan, Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War.  We are the descendants of soldiers, sailors or marines who served in the Army or Navy of the United States of America during the Civil War - 1861 to 1865.

The original Logan Camp of the SUVCW was in Cedar Springs.  It “mustered” in August 27, 1897, but was suspended by the Department on March 31, 1898.  The current Camp was reformed in April of 1994. (The first GAR Post under this name in the State of Michigan existed from 1897 until 1942 and met at the Michigan Soldiers Home, today known as the Grand Rapids Home for Veterans.) 

The Camp was named in honor of General John A. Logan, a successful lawyer and politician from Illinois who performed admirably as an officer during the Civil War, rising to the rank of Major General and commanding the 15th Corps.  In line to assume command of the Army of the Tennessee, General Sherman denied him the appointment, probably because Logan did not have a West Point background.

Perhaps Logan’s ultimate claim to greatness is the fact that this rebuff did not make him bitter.  He continued on in the service and, upon discharge, did not forget the sacrifices of his fellow soldiers.  Not only did he define Memorial Day, but, in his capacity as one of the earliest Commander-in-Chief’s of the Grand Army of the Republic and a United States Senator, made great efforts to secure favorable pension benefits for the soldiers, their widows and children.

Memorial Day and General Order No. 11 May 5 1865

The text of General Logan's Memorial Day Order is on the Department of Michigan website under the Ceremonies and Rituals tab.

CAMP PARTNERSHIPS

The Camp is a member of the City of Grand Rapids Stakeholders Group that oversees condition and usage of Monument Park and Veterans Memorial Park in Grand Rapids.

We are also a member of the Grand Valley State University Local History Roundtable.  The Roundtable serves to coordinate communication between other historically-related groups.

The Camp conducts all of its memorial ceremonies with the Michigan Commandery, Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States and the Champlin Corps No. 41, Woman’s Relief Corps.

RESPONSIBILITIES AND PROGRAMS

Our Camp, which is responsible for Kent, Ottawa, and Montcalm Counties, is dedicated to keeping alive the memory of the Union soldier and this we accomplish through fulfilling the goals and purposes of the SUVCW, some of which includes:

Civil War Monuments and Memorials - Locating, assessing, and restoring or preserving Civil War memorials, plaques, markers, statues, and monuments. 

Some of our restoration accomplishments include –

Kent County Civil War Monument and Fountain The Kent County Civil War Monument & Fountain

2000-2003: Raised over $300,000 to restore the Kent County Civil War Monument and Fountain in Monument Park, Grand Rapids (Division Ave. and Fulton St.).  Rededicated October, 2003.

This monument is made of “white bronze” or zinc and ranks as one of the most historic Civil War monuments in the nation.  It was the first monument to also be a fountain and the 1st to include a tribute to the efforts of women.

It was dedicated in 1885 with General Philip Sheridan as guest of honor.


  

 


2001: Charles E. Belknap statue in Belknap Park, Grand Rapids, MI

2001: Monument with sculpture in Sand Lake, MI

2001: Monument with sculpture in Cedar Springs, MI

2001: Monument with sculpture in Cemetery at Grand Rapids Home for Veterans

2002: Camp Kellogg/Camp Lee bronze tablet on boulder at Central High School in Grand Rapids

2002: Monument with sculpture in Grant, MI

2003: Monument with sculpture in Rockford, MI

2003: Woman’s Relief Corps bronze tablet on boulder in Monument Park, Grand Rapids

2003: Monument with sculpture in Jonesville, MI

2004: Monument with sculpture in Andersonville Prison, Georgia

2005: Monument with sculpture in Campus Martius in Detroit

2008: Cast iron urn in Oakhill Cemetery in Grand Rapids

2010: Planting of new memorial tree in honor of Maj. A. B. Watson at John Ball Park, Grand Rapids

2010: Bronze bust of Abraham Lincoln in Lincoln Place Park, Grand Rapids

2011: Created new historic sign for boulder at Cantonment Anderson (Civil War training grounds) in Grand Rapids

2011: Created new signage identifying the Soldiers’ Cemetery at Oakhill Cemetery, Grand Rapids

2011: Bronze tablet honoring John A. Logan G.A.R. Post No. 1 at Grand Rapids Home for Veterans

2013: Woman’s Relief Corps bronze tablet in Byron Center

2013: Created new veterans memorial in Byron Center

2013: Auxiliary to the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War at American Legion Post No. 459 in Grand Rapids

2013: Monument with sculpture in Lake Forest Cemetery in Grand Haven

2013: SUVCW bronze tablet at the Grand Rapids Public Library


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Grave Registration – Locating, assessing, and replacing or preserving the headstones that mark the graves of Civil War soldiers buried in Michigan.

The Camp conducts ceremonies for headstone dedications (new, never before marked graves), rededications (for new headstones that were replaced), and recognition (for a privately marked grave that never had a veteran flag holder).

Educational programs – Members of the Camp and other Allied Orders, partner with History Remembered, Inc. to share a living history look at life during the Civil War.  Programs are tailored for different grades and include the highly successful “service-learning” program titled, “Together, we CAN do it!”  Other programs include flag etiquette, patriotism, and more.

Eagle Scout Program – Working with Boy Scouts through educational programs and assisting young men in their quest to earn the rank of Eagle Scout.  Cooperative projects include the building and placement of three park benches in Monument Park near the Kent County Civil War Monument and the restoration of Lincoln Place Park in Grand Rapids. 

Eagles are recognized with a colorful certificate of commendation.

JrROTC – We support the efforts of the JrROTC units at three of the Grand Rapids Public Schools by annually recognizing a cadet who excelled at striving to inculcate and broadly sustain the American principles of representative government, of equal rights, and of impartial justice for all.

The cadets are awarded a color certificate and a special medal.

Supporting other Veteran groups – We are dedicated to honoring Veterans of ALL wars.  We participate in various veterans-related committees and the Memorial Day services and Veterans Day parade in Grand Rapids and other communities.

 


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  Last updated on February 9, 2014 11:32 AM - webmaster