Speakers Bureau

The Cincinnati Chapter SAR Speakers Bureau consists of members of the Sons of the American Revolution who are knowledgeable in many historical and genealogical disciplines.  All of the talks are tailored to younger students as well as adult audiences.

Please contact the Speaker Chairman to schedule a speaker for your event. Our schedule fills fast. Don’t wait until the last minute to schedule your event.

All of our members are volunteers.  Donations are accepted. The Sons of the American Revolution is a non-profit 501(C) 3 organization.

Our Speakers…

Speakers Bureau

Classes, Lectures & Stories of the Revolutionary Era

The Battle of Yorktown – Presented by Dr. Ed Bonniwell

The Battle of Yorktown presentation is the story of the Battle of Yorktown, which effectively ended the Revolutionary war, and is full of mystery and intrigue.  In this presentation you will learn about how Britain’s greatest military tactician and strategist, Lord Cornwallis, came to position himself on the banks of the York River, the strategy of Washington at Yorktown, and the significant contributions made by American General Nathaniel Green.  The presentation chronicles the life of Lord Cornwallis following the American Revolution, and George Washington in the aftermath of the surrender of Yorktown.

Reflections on Samuel Adams – Presented by Dr. Ed. Bonniwell

Often thought of as America’s Brewmeister, Samuel Adams was a man of great substance and learning. This presentation reveals the life change that occurred in Adams’ thinking. We will see how he extrapolated from scripture the great principles and ideals that found their way into the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution of the United States and the Bill of Rights. His voice, perhaps more than any other, was the prophetic voice of the American Revolution!

Artifacts of the late 18th century – Presented by Dr. Michael Bernard Gunn

I have an assortment of more than 30 objects that represent items utilized in the 18th Century around the time of The Revolutionary War. They describe and reflect, for example, on what was worn as clothing, utensils at the dinner table different than what we see today.  A few items used in the Wars fought during that era Musket balls, Cannon ball, tomahawk, etc.

Washington’s Crossing – Presented by Dan Schmitz

The story of George Washington’s Crossings of the Delaware River followed by descriptions of the First & Second Battles of Trenton and the Battle of Princeton will be told. These events became known as the Ten Crucial days of the Revolutionary War, December 25, 1776- January 3, 1777.

The Events Leading Up to the Revolutionary War – Presented by Bob Bowers 

It is important to understand what caused the Colonists to rebel against the King of England. This presentation describes events from 1764 to 1775 that infuriated the Colonists and led to war.

The Battle of Brooklyn Heights – Presented by Bob Bowers

This presentation talks about the first major battle of the Revolutionary War and how weather, courage and deception saved the American army from utter annihilation to fight another day and ultimately win the Revolutionary War.

The Declaration of Independence – Presented by Gregg Ballman

This begins with a brief discussion of the events leading up to the war and why the Colonists felt a break with England was necessary, although not everyone wanted independence. The Declaration is broken down into its four parts with a brief discussion of each: the preamble representing the introduction and its meaning, a declaration of national rights, grievances against King George and a Resolution of Independence from England. The Constitution and Bill of Rights are high-lighted.

General Overview of the Revolution – Presented by Dr. Jeff Hartman

This presentation highlights the differences between the British and Colonists.  This discusses men’s and women’s clothing, citizen (militia), frontiersman and Continental Soldier.  It also men-tions key women of the Revolution, Deborah Sampson, Cybil Ludington, etc.

The Life of the Everyday Revolutionary War Soldier – Presented by Jack Bredenfoerder

Joseph Plumb Martin, a Memoir of a Revolutionary War Soldier.  Joseph Plumb Martin was a young Revolutionary War soldier from Connecticut who served throughout the entire American Revolutionary War.  He kept a detailed account of his firsthand experiences which is considered an extremely important primary source document for the Revolutionary War.  It has been often cited by scholars researching the war, and it is particularly valuable because it gives us the perspectives of an ordinary Private who eventually advanced to the rank of Sergeant. This presentation concentrates on the everyday life of the soldiers of the American Revolution.

The Bill of Rights – Presented by Lee Wilkerson

This presentation will explain the Bill of Rights granted to citizens of the United States by their government under the US Constitution. The Bill defines what rights the government may not infringe upon without first amending the Constitution. Many of these first ten amendments are a direct consequence of the grievances the Colonists had against the British government and without which the U.S. Constitution may not have been ratified by all states.

George Washington – Presented by Zachary T. Haines

Upon being asked by the officers of his chapter, Zac reluctantly agreed to assume the role of President George Washington.  Although new in the role, Zac visits K-12 schools dressed as General Washington to educate children about our Founding Fathers, Declaration of Independence, Constitution, and the American Revolution. He believes that America’s history must be preserved and transmitted to future generations.

A Broad Perspective on the Period of the Revolution — Presented by Bob Hill

In his course offerings he addresses a wide range of subjects speaking to the causes of the Revolution, Paul Revere’s ride, and Sybil Ludington’s ride, the life of a Continental Army Soldier, Militiamen, speaking of his clothing, weapons, usual diet, shelter, training for battles, and life at Valley Forge.  He frequently speaks to the alliance with France, as well as the role of African Americans, or Native Americans in the American Revolution.  He wears the Dragoon (Cavalry) Uniform, speaks to the life of the Continental Cavalryman.  He also addresses the land bounties awarded to Revolutionary War Veterans and their migration westward into the Ohio Valley.  He carries very large copies of the Declaration of Independence, sharing it with students and speak-ing to it in its broader parameters.

Unknown Heroes, John Glover and the Marblehead Regiment – Mark Holland

If there is a story that needs to be told, it’s that of John Glover and his Marblehead regiment. These heroic, brave men saved the American Revolution in 1776 not once, but THREE times! This presentation will dive into these accounts and give exciting details on what makes these men heroes!

The Ten Crucial Days: Washington crossing the Delaware and the Battles of Trenton and Princeton – Mark Holland

 “These are the times that try men’s souls,” wrote Thomas Paine in American Crisis on December 19, 1776. Paine’s immortal words perfectly sum up the state of the Revolution at the end of 1776. The crisis was simple; George Washington’s army had been beaten and driven from Long Island, New York was in British hands, and many of his troop’s enlistments would expire at the end of the year. After a long retreat across New Jersey, the only thing holding the British at bay was winter, and the Delaware River. The Revolution tottered on the brink of failure.

African Americans in the American Revolution– Mark Holland

The story of how the original thirteen American Colonies broke away from Great Britain and formed the United States.  This story is well known.  Less well known is how African-Americans felt and what they did during the War of Independence. In this presentation you’ll learn about the difficult decisions faced by African Americans, the heroic first all-black continental regiment, and a slave turned spy.

Washington’s Commander in Chief Guards – Mark Holland

With the war about to change no longer would he be commanding an army maintaining a static siege line, but a mobile army, marching to meet the next British threat. With movement came additional dangers, there were a number of Tories spread over the countryside that were determined to assist the British and of course there was the British Army itself. Therefore, a surprise raid on his headquarters was a serious possibility. To counter that possibility Washington decided to form a personal guard. This presentation will discuss the attempted mutiny, the recreation of the unit, and their exploits in various battles.

Marquis De Lafayette, the Lancelot of the American Revolution – Mark Holland

Born into an ancient family of French warriors, the Marquis de Lafayette inherited a desire for adventure!  When the time came to prove his mettle, it was not at the service of France, but the rebellious American colonies. This presentation will discuss what Lafayette gave up, his relation-ships, especially with Washington, and his accomplishments on the battlefield.

John Laurens, The Abolitionist and Soldier – Mark Holland

In the words of George Washington about John Laurens, “that it is my firm belief his merits & worth richly entitle him to the whole picture: no man possessed more of the amor patria—in a word, he had not a fault that I ever could discover…” This presentation discusses John Laurens as part of Washington’s inner circle or “military family”, his plan for to recruit slaves from the southern states into regiments for the Continental Army and emancipate them in return for their military service, and his heroic nature.

Nathaniel Greene, Forgotten Hero and Youngest Brigadier General – Mark Holland

One of the most effective American generals of the War for Independence, Rhode Island’s Nathaniel Greene was one of those extraordinary figures who excelled as a commander despite having no formal military training or experience. This presentation will give details of Greene’s ups and downs and how he became one of the Revolutions greatest heroes.

Fascinating “did you knows” of the American Revolution – Mark Holland

Stories such as tales of the 16-year-old Virginia Giant who fought for the Continentals, what Washington’s teeth were really made of, the deadliest hurricane in recorded history, the first “national anthem” before the Star Spangled Banner, and many more fascinating stories and “did you knows about the American Revolution!

Washington’s Spy Ring, The Culper Spy Ring – Mark Holland

British forces occupied New York in August 1776, and the city would remain a British strong-hold and a major naval base for the duration of the Revolutionary War. Though getting information from New York on British troop movements and other plans was critical to General George Washington, commander of the Continental Army, there was simply no reliable intelligence network that existed on the Patriot side at that time. That changed in 1778, when a young cavalry officer named Benjamin Tallmadge established a small group of trustworthy men and women from his hometown of Setauket, Long Island. Known as the Culper Spy Ring, Tallmadge’s homegrown network would become the most effective of any intelligence-gathering operation on either side during the Revolutionary War.

The Captain Howard Miller Flag Collection – Colonel Don McGraw

The flag collection consists of 70 flags collected by the late Captain Miller and represent the history of the flags and banners that have flown over the United States since its earliest days as a British Colony.  The story of each flag is told and anecdotes from the period of its use are related by Col. McGraw.