The citizen-soldiers who fought for the Confederacy
personified the best qualities of America. The preservation of liberty and freedom was the
motivating factor in the South's decision to fight the Second American Revolution. The
tenacity with which Confederate soldiers fought underscored their belief in the rights
guaranteed by the Constitution. These attributes are the underpinning of our democratic
society and represent the foundation on which this nation was built.
Today, the Sons of Confederate Veterans is preserving the
history and legacy of these heroes, so future generations can understand the motives that
animated the Southern Cause.
The SCV is the direct heir of the United Confederate
Veterans, and the oldest hereditary organization for male descendants of Confederate
soldiers. Organized at Richmond, Virginia in 1896, the SCV continues to serve as a
historical, patriotic, and non-political organization dedicated to insuring that a true
history of the 1861-1865 period is preserved.
Membership in the Sons of Confederate Veterans is open to
all male descendants of any veteran who served honorably in the Confederate armed forces.
Membership can be obtained through either direct or collateral family lines and kinship to
a veteran must be documented genealogically. The minimum age for membership is 12.
Proof of kinship to a Confederate soldier can take many
forms. The easiest method is to contact the archives of the state from which the soldier
fought and obtain a copy of the veteran's military service record. All Southern state's
archives have microfilm records of the soldiers who fought from that state, and a copy of
the information can be obtained for a nominal fee. In addition, the former Confederate
states awarded pensions to veterans and their widows. All of these records contain a
wealth of information that can be used to document military service.
The SCV has a network of genealogists to assist you in
tracing you ancestor's Confederate service.
The SCV has ongoing programs at the local, state, and
national levels which offer members a wide range of activities. Preservation work, marking
Confederate soldier's graves, historical re-enactments, scholarly publications, and
regular meetings to discuss the military and political history of the War Between the
States are only a few of the activities sponsored by local units, called camps.
All state organizations, known as Divisions, hold annual
conventions, and many publish regular newsletters to the membership dealing with statewide
issues. Each Division has a corps of officers elected by the membership who coordinate the
work of camps and the national organization.
Nationally, the SCV is governed by its members acting
through delegates to the annual convention. The General Executive Council, composed of
elected and appointed officers, conducts the organization's business between conventions.
The administrative work of the SCV is conducted at the national headquarters, 'Elm
Springs,' a restored ante-bellum home at Columbia, Tennessee.
In addition to the privilege of belonging to an
organization devoted exclusively to commemorating and honoring Confederate soldiers,
members are eligible for other benefits. Every member receives The Confederate Veteran,
the bi-monthly national magazine which contains in-depth articles on the war along news
affecting Southern heritage. The programs of the SCV range from assistance to
undergraduate students through the General Stand Watie Scholarship to medical research
grants given through the Brooks Fund. National historical symposiums, reprinting of rare
books, and the erection of monuments are just a few of the other projects endorsed by the
The SCV works in conjunction with other historical groups
to preserve Confederate history. However, it is not affiliated with any other group other
than the Military Order of the Stars and Bars, composed of male descendants of the
Southern Officers Corps. The SCV rejects any group whose actions tarnish or distort the
image of the Confederate soldier or his reasons for fighting.
If you are interested in perpetuating the ideals that
motivated your Confederate ancestor, the SCV needs you. The memory and reputation of the
Confederate soldier, as well as the motives for his suffering and sacrifice, are being
consciously distorted by some in an attempt to alter history. Unless the descendants of
Southern soldiers resist those efforts, a unique part of our nations' cultural heritage
will cease to exist.
If you would like more information about the Sons of
Confederate Veterans, call 1-800-MY-SOUTH, or 1-800-MY-DIXIE. Or contact one of our Camp Officers, located in the Officers section of our website.