Two of the most important documents in American history are the Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution. In 1776, the Declaration of Independence forged national identity, and in 1787, the United States Constitution created the framework for the federal government that is still in use today.
While Independence Day is a beloved national holiday, Constitution Week is lesser known. Constitution Week runs Sept. 17-23 and is an annual commemoration of the living document that upholds and protects the freedoms central to the American way of life.
The Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) initiated the observance in 1955 when the organization petitioned the U.S. Congress to dedicate September 17-23 of each year to the commemoration of Constitution Week. Congress adopted the resolution. Then on August 2, 1956, President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed it into Public Law #915.
The goals of the celebration are threefold: to encourage the study of the historical events that led to the framing of the Constitution in September 1787; to inform people that the Constitution is the basis of America’s great heritage and the foundation of the American way of life; and to emphasize U.S. citizens’ responsibility to protect, defend and preserve the Constitution.
The DAR has been the foremost advocate for the awareness, promotion and celebration of Constitution Week. This annual observance provides innumerable opportunities for educational initiatives and community outreach, two mission areas of crucial importance to the national society’s work. By fostering knowledge of and appreciation for the Constitution and the inalienable rights it affords to all Americans, the DAR helps to keep the memory of the men and women who secured our nation’s independence alive, whose bravery and sacrifice made possible the liberties enjoyed today.
“The U.S. Constitution was written to protect the individual liberties of all American citizens through written law,” said Fort Payne Regent Jill Brewer. “Let’s celebrate Constitution Week September 17-23 by resolving to be better informed and more responsible citizens. Read and study the Constitution so you know your rights and understand what it means.”
Constitution Week Events in Naperville
- 3PM Sun., Sept. 17 / The Fort Payne Chapter, NSDAR kicks-off Constitution Week with Bells Across America, a bell-ringing at Moser Tower and Millennium Carillon along the Riverwalk. Join DAR members to hear the 72-bell carillon ring out to honor the U.S. Constitution. City Carillonneur Tim Sleep will perform beginning with a bell strike at 3PM, followed by “America,” “America the Beautiful” and the “Star Spangled Banner.”
- AM Mon., Sept. 18 / A celebratory ringing of the school bell will be held at Brookdale Elementary School in School District 204.
- 11AM Mon., Sept. 18 / A proclamation for Constitution Week from Naperville Mayor Scott A. Wehrli will be read at the Naperville Municipal Center.
- 1:30PM Mon., Sept. 18 / A celebratory ringing of the school bell will be held at Naper Elementary School in School District 203.
- Sept. 17-Sept. 23 / Constitution Week will be recognized at three Naperville public library locations with a variety of informative and interesting public displays.
New for 2023
Thanks to videographer Thomas Hartmann, the Fort Payne Chapter, NSDAR has produced a special video of interviews with visitors in downtown Naperville. Individuals were asked questions about the Constitution. This artful and inspiring video, now posted below, will be featured on the DAR’s social media sites, including Instagram (NapervilledarFortpayne).
“You’ll be surprised by the responses!” noted DAR member Wrenne Jakubiak.
Founded in 1890, the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution aims to preserve the memory and spirit of those individuals who contributed to securing American independence. DAR is a nonprofit, nonpolitical women’s service organization with more than 185,000 members in approximately 3,000 chapters worldwide. Any woman 18 years or older, regardless of race, religion, or ethnic background, who can prove lineal descent from a patriot of the American Revolution is eligible for membership.
Anyone interested in learning more about DAR is encouraged to visit www.dar.org/national-society/become-member or contact email@example.com.
Last Updated, Sept. 17, 2023.