The National Society of the Sons of the American Revolution was organized April 30, 1889, and incorporated by an act of the United States Congress, June 9, 1906. The corporate charter states the purposes and objectives of the society as:
“…patriotic, historical, and educational, and shall include those intended or designed to perpetuate the memory of the men who, by their services or sacrifices during the war of the American Revolution, achieved the independence of the American people; to unite and promote fellowship among their descendants; to inspire them and the community at large with a more profound reverence for the principles of the Government founded by our forefathers; to encourage historical research in relation to the American Revolution; to acquire and preserve the records of the individual services of the patriots of the war, as well as the documents, relics, and landmarks; to mark the scenes of the Revolution by appropriate memorials; to celebrate the anniversaries of the prominent events of the war and of the revolutionary period; to foster true patriotism; to maintain and extend the institutions of American freedom; and to carry out the purposes expressed in the preamble to the Constitution of our country and the injunctions of Washington in his farewell address to the American people.”
The Oregon and Washington Society was organized June 6, 1891, at Portland, Oregon, mainly through the efforts of General Thomas M. Anderson, then Colonel of the 14th Infantry stationed at Vancouver Barracks. There were fifteen charter members. When membership increased, members residing in Washington organized the Washington Society at Seattle, June 17, 1895. Thirty-four of the fifty-nine Washington Society members demitted from the Oregon Society which left the Oregon Society with one hundred four members. The present name, “The Oregon Society of the Sons of the American Revolution,” was adopted at the fifth annual meeting on February 22, 1896.
The Oregon Society functioned as a single Chapter until the Southern Oregon and Portland Chapters were formed, June 14, 1935. The Eugene Chapter was formed in 1970 and chaged its name to the Thomas Jefferson Chapter in 2011. The Republic Chapter (Salem) was formed in 1973. The Central Coast chapter was formed in 1991, and the Portland Chapter changed its name to the William Cannon Chapter in 1991 in honor of the only Revolutionary War Veteran known to be buried in Oregon. The Lewis & Clark Chapter was formed in 1992. In 2001, the William Cannon Chapter was deactivated and the members transferred to the Lewis and Clark Chapter. The Oregon Society currently has five chapters.
Three national congresses have been hosted by the Oregon Society: in 1915, 1922, and 1982.
Judge Wallace McCament was President General of the National Society, 1921-22.