First major, patriotic gift: DAR donates 76 trees to Independence Mall

USA250 is proud to announce the first major, patriotic gift to the nation announced for the United States Semiquincentennial:

At their 126th annual Continental Congress, the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) announced a $380,000 donation to the National Park Service (NPS), to underwrite the planting of 76 trees at Independence National Historical Park (INHP), a gift made in the spirit of 1776.

The trees will be planted over the next three years and mature as the nation approaches our 250th anniversary, the United States Semiquincentennial. Cynthia MacLeod, NPS’ Acting Northeast Regional Director thanked the DAR, noting that, “The park is a sort of arboretum, comprised of several landscapes. The new trees will significantly enhance the overall character that has defined the park for decades.”

The DAR’s donation is the first component of its new America 250 initiative, to engage the organization’s 185,000 members with the commemoration and celebration of the nation’s Semiquincentennial anniversary. It follows a long list of major DAR contributions over generations to strengthen Independence Hall and its surrounding environs. The group planted 13 trees at Independence Square during the 1926 Sesquicentennial, and it also funded the restoration of Independence Hall’s second floor for the 1976 Bicentennial.

For this donation, MacLeod explained that “some trees will be replacement street trees, others will be individual specimen from smaller flowering trees to larger evergreen and deciduous trees that fit in Washington Square, Independence Square, Independence Mall, and the Second Bank and First Bank blocks, among other locations in the park. Eventually we will have a map that locates each of the 76 trees.”

DAR also announced the appointment of Lynn Forney Young by Speaker Paul Ryan to the United States Semiquincentennial Commission. Mrs. Young serves as DAR Honorary President General and chair of DAR’s America 250 committee. The full list of Commission appointees is available online at www.usa250.org/commission.

USA250 expresses our deepest appreciation to Daughters of the American Revolution for preserving the national values and historic sites of the American Revolution and honoring the memory of those who served the patriotic cause. The DAR is part of an impressive range of individuals, organizations and foreign nations who, during past national anniversary celebrations, have donated works of public art and other civic contributions that have left a legacy both in Philadelphia and across the United States, ranging from the Statue of Liberty to the restoration of Independence Mall, from the LOVE Statue to the Japanese cherry blossom trees that beautify our public space.


Photos for Public Use

Photos courtesy of Daughters of the American Revolution:

DAR President General Ann T. Dillon, NPS Acting Northeast Regional Director Cynthia MacLeod, and DAR Honorary President General Lynn F. Young

DAR President General Ann T. Dillon and DAR Honorary President General and US Semiquincentennial Commissioner Lynn F. Young present donation to NPS Acting Northeast Regional Director Cynthia MacLeod

 

Dr. Andrew Hohns, Member of the US Semiquincentennial Commission, Board Chair of USA250

US Semiquincentennial Commissioner and USA250 Board Chair Dr. Andrew Hohns address the DAR Continental Congress to thank the Daughters for their patriotic contribution for 2026.

 

Dr. Andrew Hohns (USA250, US Semiquincentennial Commission) and Leah Popowich, Cynthia MacLeod (NPS), President General Ann T. Dillon (DAR), Honorary President General Lynn F. Young (DAR, also US Semiquincentennial Commission), Jon Grabelle Herrmann (USA250)

Dr. Andrew Hohns (USA250, US Semiquincentennial Commission) and Leah Popowich, Cynthia MacLeod (NPS), President General Ann T. Dillon (DAR), Honorary President General Lynn F. Young (DAR, also US Semiquincentennial Commission), Jon Grabelle Herrmann (USA250)