The chapter has placed eight historic markers at sites in and around the city of Sanford. Chapter members and their families have also donated historic items to the Museum of Seminole County History for display in the DAR Room.
Chapter's Marker Quest Booklet
In addition to the placement of local historic markers, the Sallie Harrison Chapter has a long history of supporting the establishment and preservation of local historic landmarks, including the Gen. Sanford Memorial Library, the Seminole County School Museum, and Museum of Seminole County History. The chapter continues to work with local community-based organizations and historic societies to continue the preservation of our local history.
February 8, 1957 - Dedication of the General Sanford Memorial Library established in the City of Sanford.
In 1941, friends of the late General Henry S. Sanford, on behalf of his daughter, Carola Sanford Dow, approached the chapter. Mrs. Dow wished to present her father’s valuable papers, historical documents and portraits to the city he founded. The chapter raised funds by hosting Silver Teas, antique shows, bridge parties, and garage and rummage sales to build a replica of General Sanford's library. The City of Sanford, interested citizens, the Women’s Club and several local banks assisted with this project. In 1956, the Sallie Harrison Chapter saw its dream come true when the Sanford Museum opened at Fort Mellon Park.
List of Historical Markers across Seminole County
Grave marker for Organizing Chapter Regent Elizabeth Harrison Starling
The chapter's first marker was placed at the grave of Organizing Regent Elizabeth Harrison Starling, who died February 25, 1925. It was dedicated and placed on December 18, 1931. A re-dedication ceremony was held February 14, 1999 to replace the stolen original marker. Also, in honor of the chapter’s 80th anniversary, chapter members and Fort Mellon Society C.A.R. members gathered for a reception held in the gazebo near her grave site at Lakeview (old Sanford) Cemetery on Gen. Hutchinson Highway (Route 46A). The marker reads: “Erected in loving memory of Elizabeth Harrison Starling Founder of Sallie Harrison Chapter D.A.R.”
In 1934, a coquina marker with a bronze plate commemorating Fort Reid was placed at Grove Drive (22nd Street) and Mellonville Avenue. Fort Reid was established as a commissary and soldiers camp for Fort Mellon in 1840. It was named after the fourth territorial governor of Florida, Robert Reid, who was appointed by U.S. President Martin van Buren. The marker reads: “Fort Reid 1836 established as a Commissary and Soldiers Camp for Fort Mellon Erected by Sallie Harrison Chapter D.A.R. Sanford Florida 1934”
Historic Note: In 1875, a housing subdivision was built in Sanford near the site of Fort REID but it was named Fort Reed. A nearby train station also was named Fort Reed. It is assumed that these were named after Harrison Reed, the ninth elected governor of Florida (1868-1873). This has led to confusing about the spelling for the original Fort Reid.
A regulation DAR cast aluminum marker was placed April 28, 1935, commemorating Rollins College, which was formed in Sanford on April 28, 1885. The marker was first placed on North Park Avenue on City Hall grounds. When the city hall was removed the marker was removed and stayed at the Seminole County Historical Building for a number of years. In 1985, Regent Elisabeth (Libby) Boyd, in cooperation with the City of Sanford, rededicated the marker and placed it at the southwest corner of First Street and Park Avenue. The inscription reads: “Rollins College, Florida’s Oldest Institution of Higher Education was on 28 April 1885 incorporated, organized and named in the Lyman Bank Bldg, southwest corner of Park and First Streets here in Sanford by Rev. E.P. Hooker, D. D., Rev. F. W. Lyman, Rev. J.A. Tomlinson, Rev. S.O. Smith To Commemorate the Fiftieth Anniversary of This Significant Event in the Development of Education in Florida and to Observe the Semicentennial of the Founding of Rollins College This Marker is placed here 28 April 1935 by the Sallie Harrison Chapter, Daughters of the American Revolution and other citizens of Sanford and Seminole County.”
Historic markers across Seminole County
In 1936, a granite marker with bronze plate was placed at the corner of Mellonville Avenue and Second Street commemorating the site of Fort Mellon, which was manned by a garrison of 3,000 soldiers. The original plate was damaged in an auto accident and when it was replaced the spelling of Captain Mellon was in error. Re-dedication with correct spelling took place December 21, 1989. The marker was moved to the new Sanford River Walk location at the corner of Mellonville Avenue and Seminole Boulevard in 1999. It reads: “Site of Fort Mellon, formerly Camp Fanning where on February 8, 1837 during one of the fiercest battles of the Seminole Wars Captain Mellon commandant was killed in an attach of 400 braves led by King Philip and Coacoochee. Erected by the Sallie Harrison Chapter DAR”
Historic Note: This fort was originally known as Camp Monroe, not Camp Fanning.
Fort Mellon Park
On February 8, 1939, a regulation DAR cast aluminum marker was placed in Fort Mellon Park and dedicated by the Sallie Harrison Chapter. Located near the Sanford Museum on east First Street in Sanford, the inscription reads: “Fort Mellon Park 1837-1937. To commemorate the One Hundredth Anniversary of the first settlement on the shores of Lake Monroe, named Fort Mellon in memory of Captain Charles Mellon who died in defense of the fort. Subsequently known as Mellonville and later Sanford. Sponsored by Sallie Harrison Chapter D.A.R. 1938”
Speer Grove Park
On February 8, 1941, Sanford’s Founders Day, a granite marker with inscription in granite was placed at the corner of Catalina Drive (19th orange grove, planted in 1845 by Dr. Algernon Speer). It was unveiled by his descendant, young Tommy Speer. It reads: “Speer Grove Park Orange trees planted 1845 by Dr. Algernon Speer. Marker erected by City of Sanford – S.O. Chase – Sallie Harrison Chap D.A.R.- Fort Mellon Chapter S.D.T.F. 1941”
Flag Staff in cannon
On February 8, 1944, the Sallie Harrison Chapter dedicated a marker in cast aluminum at the base of the flag pole in front of what was then the USO building and now houses the Chamber of Commerce. It is located at the northwest corner of Sanford Avenue and east First Street. The chapter replaced the marker in 1975. The flagpole is set in the mouth of what was once Sanford’s official cannon. The origin of the cannon is unknown although it was long believed to have come from Fort Mellon. The first record of “Beelzebub” is a newspaper account from February 1, 1883, when the cannon was fired in honor of the arrival of the steam boat “The City of Jacksonville.” Local tradition says the cannon was mounted on a small platform near Mellonville wharf and then the Sanford wharf. The cannon was fired on special occasions such as the Fourth of July. Sallie Harrison Chapter history states the cannon barrel was donated to the city by the 1903 Mayor of Sanford, Aaron Robbins, who used to roll the cannon down First Street as a gesture of “welcome” when notable persons arrived in Sanford. On April 25, 1913, the cannon exploded when it was fired in honor of the creation of Seminole County from Orange County. During construction of the bulkhead some pieces were found on the lake bottom. The exact source the cannon section at the base of the flag is unknown. Inscription reads: “DAR 1944-1975”
According to chapter records, on February 8, 1942, a marker was placed near the site of the old cemetery on Mellonville Avenue. Much later, the city of Sanford moved the graves to the Lakeview (Old Sanford) Cemetery on General Hutchinson Highway (Route 46A), but no one knows what happened to the marker.