History of Fort Augusta Chapter, NSDAR
In 1756, to protect the English colonists on the frontiers from the French and Indians, the Augusta Regiment of English Colonial Troops built Fort Augusta on the site of the Indian Village of Shamokin. Shamokin is now the City of Sunbury. Fort Augusta was the largest, strongest, and most important frontier fortification of the colony of Pennsylvania.
During the French and Indian War, the Fort had two commanders, Colonel William Clapham, its builder, and Colonel James Burd. From 1775, until his death in 1784, Colonel Samuel Hunter was the Commandant of the fort. His grave is located in the present-day Hunter-Grant Cemetery directly behind the Hunter House, where there is a replica of Fort Augusta.
After the Wyoming Massacre in 1778, and by order of Colonel Hunter, the people on the West Branch of the Susquehanna River came into Fort Augusta for protection. This was known as "The Great Runaway."
After the American Revolutionary War, Fort Augusta was dismantled. However, the powder magazine and the well still remain. Through the efforts of the Fort Augusta Chapter, NSDAR, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania acquired the site which is now Fort Augusta Museum and headquarters to the Northumberland County Historical Society, as well as the Charlotte Farrah Walter Genealogical Library.
The Fort Augusta Chapter, NSDAR, was originally organized as the Sunbury Chapter, NSDAR, on February 6, 1893, and chartered by the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution on February 14, 1893. Its name changed to Fort Augusta Chapter, NSDAR, on February 9, 1909.
In July 1977, the chapter placed a historical blue and gold sign in concrete inside the wall surrounding the cemetery to the rear of the Fort, some stones of the Hunter family were reset, and the stone of Colonel Hunter was re-inscribed.
In July 2010, a wooden sign was erected that read: "Col. Samuel Hunter & Family Burial Site the Last Commander of Fort Augusta 7-4-10."
In June 2018, the chapter cleaned all the headstones and dedicated a bronze plaque which reads: "In honor of the Revolutionary War Soldiers & Patriots buried here in the Hunter-Grant Cemetery Colonel Samuel Hunter 1732-1784 Assistant Quartermaster Thomas Grant 1758-1815 Captain George Grant 1755-1779 Marker Placed by Fort Augusta Chapter NSDAR 2018." The plaques were placed on a boulder outside the cemetery wall facing the street.
As we celebrate our 130th chapter's anniversary, we look forward to our future endeavors and friendships. While we appreciate our rich local history, being the eighth chapter established in Pennsylvania and 43rd within the nation, we know these milestones are not possible without our chapter's dedicated daughters.